RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive371

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Me and my brothers went to the store today[edit]

Now here is the interesting part, in a farm field near where I live there was a guy armed with a loaded crossbow and wore camouflage. This sounds paranoid of me but his demeanor and body language screamed far right white nationalist. That was extremely creepy. Fun part, I never seen him in the neighborhood and bow hunting season has not started yet. --Possible Goat (talk) 15:57, 3 October 2020 (UTC)

How do you determine someone's political leanings from their demeanor and body language? At any rate, crossbow regulations differ by jurisdiction, but are often different from both regular bows and firearms. What do you think he was doing that's more likely than something like visiting a friend or relative who he hunts with to pre-range a hunting location? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 05:49, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Sealioning noted. Oxyaena Harass 08:14, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Everybody should know that when you carry a crossbow, appropriate apparel is chainmail and a pickelhelm. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱsos. 16:35, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

An update on obsessive behaviour and small request[edit]

Just as an update, after this obsessive fear started to affect more aspects of my life than I would have liked, I decided to book a doctor's appointment to get my head checked out and see if any diagnosis can come of this. After knowing what's wrong with my head, I will get into counselling to hopefully give me the ability to fight back against these dumb fears.

As a final request from anyone who is willing and more or less knows what I'm on about, would you be able to just go to my talk page and tell me how unfounded this fear is and how the world is not going to end because some guy said so? How it's all bs and there's nothing to worry about because the world is not going to end as the "documentary" is just a bullshit hoax and the prediction is just bullshit fearmongering? I think it would just help to have that kind of reminder/reality check on somewhere where I can easily access it in moments of weakness during my recovery from this.

I'm sorry about all the paranoia and all the stuff I have caused, but I'm hoping that with time and professional help, this fear will die down and I can resume back to regular life that doesn't consist purely of paranoia. Thank you in advance. -- WMS (talk) 16:22, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

I put a link to this page on the list of predictions of the end of the world on your talk page. Basically, people have been predicting the end of the world since the beginning of the world. Note that it's usually of the form "but it won't end if you just give me something I want", even if that something is just respect/recognition. Just do what we all do when some predicts the end is nigh, just tell them to piss off and get a real job. CoryUsar (talk) 17:03, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Will the world end? Eventually but it will not likely end anytime soon. Climate change takes time to destroy the world, most world ending asteroids have not crossed Earth's orbit and the Rapture is just bullshit. In 5 billion years the Earth will become extra crispy and in 20 trillion years the universe will pull apart. The takeaway here is: take a chill and enjoy life. Don't let this get to you. --Possible Goat (talk) 01:41, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
world ending? perhaps not. get really fucking shitty and exponentially even shittier? climate change IS doing that, probably should be concerned, but there is action to be taken there and doing 'something' can mitigate any fears or distress. nuclear armageddon was once a legitimate world ending possibilty. several near misses. less a threat these days. individuals making definite predictions for religious apocalypses, 2012 style calamities are absolute dogshit. anything remotely plausible would likely have significant scientific investigation, and maybe much debate like with climate change and denials to boot. if some crazed sciencey guy spotting something no else has, and everyone ignores when he has alerted the world to his dire predictions, its going to be dogshit. if its pushed by infowars, david icke, people of those types, but no one else, its dogshit. extinction event asteroids, cosmic rays or solar flares, space stuff im vaguely aware of but too dumb know the details but are real things, are theoretically world ending events, but are just so unlikely any time soon in the next million years, they may as well be science fiction for disaster preparedness. if in the unlikely event somethng spacey appeared today, there'd nothing to do about anyhow, so why worry? probably. my science is a little spotty on cosmic annihilation. real probable calamities will likely be localised, and if you live in earthquake, hurrcaine, tsunami zones, you likely aware of them already. outside of warzones, day to day, you should worry more about crossing the road. the world wont end but would end you if you dont see that bus. look both ways AMassiveGay (talk) 09:23, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
I wish I just was able to combat this paranoia much better, and that's the thing, I focus on bogus dogshit predictions because they're so vague and appeal to fear that I completely ignore the real stuff like climate change and that's what I hate. I'd rather focus on that be in my bed paranoid over the rapture or something like that. But thank you all for contributing, everything you said has been logical, rational and very helpful. I'm hoping that with therapy I can gain some manner of control over this paranoia of mine. Thank you all, you guys are great :).--WMS (talk) 17:25, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

Scottish Family Party[edit]

These guys seem pretty mental. From what I can tell they spend 11 months of the year googling unconventional sex acts and then spend the other month thinking up ways of accusing the SNP of teaching those sex acts to kids. Do we need an article on them? I feel like they represent a side of Christian Scottish crankery that is rarely talked about but definitely a factor north of the border, on the other hand they are very small... https://scottishfamily.org/about/social-media/ Thoughts? Get ready, it's... (talk) 02:01, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

Hilarious. Definitely deserves coverage. --Annanoon (talk) 10:17, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

Reverse McCarthyism[edit]

Meanwhile at The Grayzone, Max Blumenthal calls all of his critics of his pseudoscience and his pro-Kremlin tendencies "neocon shills". The reason why? They oppose Russia's human rights violations, especially in Syria, so they must be fascist, notwithstanding the fact that actual fascists support Russia.Jeh2ow Damn son! 12:03, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

The enemy of my right wing psycho enemy, is likely to also be a right wing psycho enemy with a different authority structure they worship. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:03, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
How exactly is "neocon" supposed to be the same as fascist? There are a significant number of prominent Jewish neoconservatives.𝔖𝔲𝔪𝔪𝔞 𝔄𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔬𝔩𝔬𝔤𝔦𝔠𝔞 (𝔮𝔲𝔢𝔯𝔢𝔩𝔦𝔰) (𝔰𝔠𝔯𝔦𝔭𝔱𝔲𝔯𝔞) 15:48, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
And so? These days neocon's are pretty much the same as American fascism - including many groups that are ultra patriotic, characterise of enemies as communist, religious nationalists, etc - all fascist in colour if not in name. Also there's plenty of Jewish fascists! Aloysius the Gaul 23:54, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
One common tactic that Blumenthal and his cronies do is group all of their enemies into one group.Jeh2ow Damn son! 16:56, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm surprised Max doesn't have an article yet. Someone should make it. I always see him on the Jimmy Dore Show. 206.176.154.185 (talk) 22:58, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

JP Sears[edit]

So, there's this internet comedian that often does a good job skewering some of the nuttier trends out there, left and right. Plus, he does seem to have a message of taking the time to understand the other person in a debate rather than immediately get angry at them. His brand of humor involves a lot of forms of irony, so it's often difficult to be sure when he's being totally serious. But lately, he's been on an bullshitting campaign regarding Coronavirus. Some of it is spot on, others are using blatantly wrong interpretation of numbers and ignoring other issues regarding the virus. A little while ago, he interviewed Brian Rose, founder of London Real, regarding censorship and free speech, which sounds good on the surface, until you realize that Rose is a conspiracy theorist who associates with the likes of David Icke and worse. And of course, JP Sears also occasionally hawks alternative supplements and whatnot. Overall, he's more good than bad, but there is some bad. Not sure if he's worth an article or not.

Funny (lots more than this, but just a few)

If meat eaters acted like vegans
How to be gluten intolerant
Couples in January vs August 2020


Concerning (a lot more than this, but again, here's some)

Brian Rose Interview
Covid 19 Fatality rates, where he misplaces the decimal in order to make coronavirus look safer than flu

Thoughts?CoryUsar (talk) 15:55, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

We have a page on him (JP Sears): overall he's a dangerous nutter. Bongolian (talk) 21:49, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

Religions against sexuality[edit]

So I know before I said that Hinduism is against homosexuality, but it seems that in general the religion seems to take a negative stance towards it in general (and for that matter any sort of pleasurable activity is seen as an illusion). One teacher referred to it as an illusion and that its not pleasure, it's just nerve stimulation. Or some say that sugar is not sweet but it's in the imagination. https://gnosticteachings.org/scriptures/hindu/2156-sivananda-sex-beauty-and-imagination.html Seems kinda screwy to me. Machina (talk) 01:42, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

its religion. what is not explicitly forbidden is assumed to be according to what whoever holds sway of your creed has decided to extrapolate from scripture. and we can ignore what is explicitly forbidden because that bit was obviously allegory because we'd be really inconvenienced if it werent.
earthly pleasures are always sinful. you are lucky they are expensive too, so you wont get distracted by them, the kings riches, he needs those and he is better than than you, divinely appointed and all, and wont be tempted like you would. so no rebelling. thats probably super explicitly forbidden. but what the fuck do you know, you cant read you are a fucking serf. heavens super nice, you'd like it, just follow the rules that i kindly readout to you from god. you get cake and fuck anyone you like there, but your wife wont die in agony craping out babies after. just a life time of toil for you first. life time of toil very important. the really important rule is do as i fucking say. and yes, that you should be whipped from time to time right up there. we have made it so easy for you to avoid sinful earthly pleasures you are a shoe in for heaven. and a life time really not going to be that long for you. i almost envy you. and you wouldnt like cake anyway. bit rich for you. i feel a bit bloated after that five course meal, i need to lie down. we all have our crosses to bear. you are really not missing much. clear out all the cow shit from barn, and no wanking when im gone either. ok thats going too far, but inerrant word of god and all - keep it in your pants AMassiveGay (talk) 02:45, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Hinduism is more true than Christianity, but it is still just a religion and call fall into many of the same traps. HairlessCat (talk) 03:17, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Some religions do not seem to be very on board with the idea of people enjoying themselves. And that gives rise to puritanical attitudes and subsequent guilt. Sounds like a good reason to ignore religions as they are just social inventions and not a path to truth.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 07:31, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Saying any religion is more true is like asking what lie you want to believe.Machina (talk) 17:50, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Saying that the Earth is a sphere is a lie, but it's more true than saying that the Earth is flat. Different religions have different social policies, and these produce different societies with different quantitative outcomes that can be compared for desirability. For example, the Aztek religion produced a society in which slaves were taken from conquered groups and sacrificed in order to keep the sun and various environmental conditions operating normally. In comparison, Christianity has produced the only societies to have ever forced other societies to give up slavery by force. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 19:30, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

While in the process justifying slavery in their teachings. I mean only WE can have slaves but everyone else....no.Machina (talk) 01:11, 3 October 2020 (UTC)

I'm referring to things like the US forcing Indian Reservations that had not ended slavery to do so in 1866. The US had by that time fought and ended a war over it, and put the 13th Amendment into effect, ending slavery within its own territory. Hegemonizing abolitionism has historically been exclusively a product of Christian societies, as it has been exclusively a product of the Enlightenment philosophical tradition and the economic system of capitalism. Slavery is an example of how different religions can produce different tangible results in societies, which relates to how effective their teachings are at actually producing good results, which relates to how true their insights into human nature are. Do you want more examples, or do you get the point? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 02:25, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
you start with a sentence making reference to indian reservations, a product of imperialism and genocides, then continue on to mention the 13th amendment which did not end nor does it prohibit slavery on us soil, after a civil war that laid the foundation for much of the systemic racism it still struggles with today. good start. abolitionism was primarily concerned with the transatlantic slave trade, the main parties being european powers and the us, who valiantly ended this specific dreadful trade they'd created, and profited greatly from, causing immeasurable suffering, depopulated the african continent and collapsing any industry not the slave trade. exclusively christian enlightenment values won out in the exclusively christian nations coincidentally running the transatlantic slave trade just as it was becoming less profitable and just in time for enlightenment values to conquer the parts of africa enlightenment values hadnt already. treaties with afrcan nations, muslim nations lke the persia and the ottomens and nations across asia all contributed to ending slavery throughout the world, in this period only now becoming globally viable because aforementioned exclusively christian nations having the foresight to be unrestrained imperialists, and had conquer huge swathes of the world to plunder resources that fuelled industrialisation and provide the indentured servants that replaced the slaves in plantations. exclusively christian enlightenment values everyone. cherry picking stuff is great. AMassiveGay (talk) 10:38, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
That's nice. I mentioned Christianity vs. the Aztek religion vis-à-vis slavery as an example to illustrate a point. To that point, can you name one non-Christian society in all of history that forced another society to end slavery? Or one non-Enlightenment society? Or one non-capitalist society? A number of slaveholding polities have ended the practice of their own accord over the millennia, but those that forced others to do so is a very short list. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 11:28, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
what for? the point is irrelevent. the period when the slave trade was gradually being ended globally, was dominated by imperial european powers, which on top of the horrors of imperialism, played a major part in creating and expanding the scale and barbaric inhumanity of the transatlantic slave trade which christianity was used to justify and only after this trade help make britain and other powers rich, only after it helped build towns and cities in the old world, only after had help build the us, only after the haitian revolution made britan fear of its carribean holdings and it became less profitable, did 'some' christian voices heard in opposition start to have an effect in ending slavery and that involved all of the world not just christian, but muslim too, and hindu and buddhist. so you want a big hand for the cultural superiority of christian nations for their part in ending an institution that they were profiting from, and had expanded to an unprecedented scale, the human cost to the african continent, to its cultures, with scars still present today? or big hand to the US and how it ended slavery in the communities of the handful of native americans they hadnt murdered with war and famine? big hand to us that still has slavery permitted on its soil as enshrined by the constitution thats never applied to all its people equally. big hand to europe and its sanctimonious christians of the enlightment whose values never extended beyond their own citzenry, and certainly not to africa where the enlightment was justification of its conquest and plunder. but yes i concede. in a period where their hegemonic power global, christian nations were able to clear up a little bit of the shit they sprayed over the world, while leaving bigger fresher steaming piles in their wake. im confused by the aztek thing. do you mean aztec?. the christans that wiped them out did not end any slavery when they did. AMassiveGay (talk) 12:33, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
“but yes i concede” Acknowledgement of the facts is good. It means that you can check yourself against reality and become less wrong over time. So let’s bring it back to the topic that started this line of discussion, that of religions varying in their correctness. In the general case, yes, some cultures really are superior to others. Name any quantifiable metric by which societies can be compared against some moral goal, and some will do better while others will do worse. The same applies to cultural subcomponents like economic systems, philosophical traditions, and religions. You’re brushing up against something important there. There are actual reasons why Christian, Enlightenment, capitalist societies were in a position to dictate the affairs of other societies, and why they were the ones who built the industrial economies that made economic slavery obsolete. Cultural institutions have implications for the wealth and power attainable by a society. For example, Muslims and Christians have historically had very different ideas about the propriety of investigating how the natural world operates as an expression of the work of God, which is a major reason why the Scientific Revolution happened in Europe rather than the Middle East.
As for “the aztek thing”, I’m afraid that the shock of the aesthetics of the Pontiac Aztek during my formative years has made that spelling rather more prominent in my internal spellchecker. But in any case, most of the destruction of the Aztec civilization was from plagues that would have happened regardless of what the Europeans did after arriving, and most of the rest was done by previously-conquered neighbors with grudges. There were only a few hundred conquistadores involved. And while the conquistadores kept slaves (which is historically common), they did not kill them in sacrifices to maintain favorable climactic conditions. I was calling attention to things that stood out in history. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 02:22, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

Sorry Mr.Number, you're in the wrong here. Certain religions aren't more correct than others, they just believe themselves to be.Machina (talk) 02:36, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

Propositions can be evaluated as correct, incorrect, or partially correct when they have some observable consequence. The Aztecs believed that natural processes like weather and the day/night cycle required sacrifices in order to be maintained. This is wrong. Christians believe that the weather and day/night cycles are a part of the natural world without particular religious significance. I have a challenge for you: Can you formulate a definition of correctness by which different religions are NOT more or less correct than one another? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 06:03, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

There's not really a need to since you've been shown to be incorrect in your assumptions. Also they didn't believe that the cycle was part of the natural world, they believed God to have a hand in it like everything else.Machina (talk) 20:12, 4 October 2020 (UTC) Though them preaching control is pretty standard: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swami_Vivekananda#Death Machina (talk) 01:33, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Duck Hunt on the NES: Every player of that game wanted to kill that dog[edit]

If you ever had a Nintendo Entertainment System, it was common to have the game Duck Hunt. You shot the ducks with the zapper (plastic gun). Now there was a dog that would mock you each time that you missed a shot. I am sure everyone who played Duck Hunt wanted to kill that fucking dog. Sadly that will never happen. --Possible Goat (talk) 01:03, 3 October 2020 (UTC)

I hope you never play Duck Season. ElectrosPardon? 02:37, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
These days you could pay a few programming students to program a similar and super basic version of the game only where you can shoot the sniggering dog right in the face and I'm sure they could easily make it super graphic and bloody. So yeah, if you've always dreamed of it...like so many things in life...your dream could come true one day :) ShabiDOO 04:44, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
"Sorry, Mario, but our princess is in another castle." Oxyaena Harass 04:57, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
Actually, that's been part of the game from the beginning, though just in an arcade-exclusive version. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 05:13, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
Sweetness! ShabiDOO 06:50, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
That would have probably made a classic DOOM mod. Probably still could. A mod to slaughter all the really annoying things in retro games you never could before... Kencolt (talk) 09:12, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
According to my brother, there are fan games where you can kill that dog. I remember as a kid when I played, I tried with all my might to kill that annoying dog. --Possible Goat (talk) 11:12, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
The arcade version let you shoot the dog, VS Duck Hunt.—€h33s3βurg3rF@€3 Spinning-Burger.gif (talkstalk) 15:07, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
I killed the dog in the game once. Well, the game froze, but I pretended that was because the dog died. CoryUsar (talk) 19:13, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
That's "Thank you Mario! But our princess is in another castle!" And people seriously overplay how annoying that is. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario! 19:19, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Toad just says: "Thanks for rescuing me, but our princess is in another castle!". --HedvigsenSkreonk here 06:54, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Overcoming a personal issue[edit]

It's likely not what people think it is. I've sort of been struggling to not be gay anymore since its ruined my life. It's made it hard to just interact with other guys without it making things awkward and I'd likely saved myself a lot of pain in the early years of highschool (not that I was bullied or shamed for it, there are other reasons). Is there anything else for it besides celibacy?Machina (talk) 06:22, 26 September 2020 (UTC)

You really are asking on the wrong website if you think anyone here can tell you how to be "cured" of your gayness. No. It's not possible. Even if you are celibate, you'll still be gay. In all seriousness, it seems to me that you have real problems that cannot be solved by RationalWiki users. I urge you to seek help from a professional, who will hopefully not only convince you that it's OK to be gay but also that life is worth living and it really doesn't make any difference if it's just an illusion or not. Spud (talk) 06:34, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
@Machina Do you have friends? Do you have places where you feel happiness of any kind? ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 12:14, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
There’s nothing a professional can do because it’s not the usual case of being harmed by society or family or people in school, it’s just a case of personal experience. I’ve had some success with stopping it with meditation and mindfulness but it never lasts. They also genuinely recognize that for someone like me it is hard to be gay and understand why I wouldn’t want to be, which is refreshing from the mindless others who try to tell me otherwise without knowing my experiences. The rest of your remark Spud is wrong and I posted an explanation somewhere on here explaining why you’re wrong.Machina (talk) 16:11, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
No one here can help you Machina, you need serious professional help. A couple sessions with a therapist is not a sufficient engagement to determine if it will be helpful and people with various levels of severity of depression are famously expert at avoiding this, dismissing it, never believing it will make a difference and coming up with endless excuses not to. A CBT or of similar method are almost certainly the only people who can help you and there is no reason you'd have a reasonable chance of getting better. Looking to the internet is likely to make things worse and only a few things will moderately help. No one here is qualified to help you. You cannot be cured from gayness no matter what shit-head says on line. Sorry. It really sucks. Some of us (not I) wish there were a straight pill. There isn't. Please get help. ShabiDOO 16:41, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
Yeah all this repression of gayness is only hurting you. Get good professional advice, and avoid any sort of conversion stuff that aims to beat you up. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario! 17:50, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
Its not a couple sessions it’s been over 15 years. Nothing changes because it’s not depression. It’s why no meds work or anything else. Like I said I’ve had some luck with meditation and even now I feel my attraction to men slowly fading, but it’s a daily fight and conversion therapy was sort of rooted in the idea that it’s a disease or a moral failing which it isn’t. There is some evidence who suggest it might have to do with the brain but so far it’s kind of uncertain whether any surgery will help. As I have mentioned before I’m not depressed and the issue is the topic at hand not some underlying cause which is the cop out answer people usually give.Machina (talk) 19:17, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
Your story keeps changing Machina its hard to make much sense of it. First you tried a session you didn't like. Then it became several sessions. Now it's 15 years. I'm doubtful about some of the things you say. However if you are looking for someone to endorse your path to self-destruction by trying to get rid of your gayness, I don't think anyone but nobs will support it. It's a fucking absurd avenue of escape. I'm sorry you're in a shitty place at the moment. I sympathize and wish it weren't the case. But nothing short of professional assistance will help. Being in a position where you don't believe anything will help or get better is itself a red-flag. If it's true you've had unproductive therapists then either you need to find one that works with you and/or you need to actual work with them and be open to the possibility you are depressed (it is within the realm of possibilities). ShabiDOO 20:02, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
I never said anything about a single session, that was someone who wasn't reading my posts. I have been in therapy for 15 years. Never did I say I tried a session I didn't like. But during the 15 years we hit dead ends all the time because the problem was the issue at hand and nothing psychological about it. I wouldn't call this a path of self destruction but liberation. Without getting too into it the who gay thing has ruined my life emotionally and socially (but it has nothing to do with society or my home life or religion). After 15 years and several therapists its come to the conclusion that the general diagnosis for me is wrong about the root of my problem and there is nothing any of them can do. Nothing short of getting rid of being gay will help at this juncture and alas neuroscience isn't at a point where that can happen just yet. All I can do is bide my time until then. As I have said, depression is the cop out response for a case that doesn't fit your narrative.Machina (talk) 21:10, 26 September 2020 (UTC)
So, it's clear that you have what you regard to be a problem and you intend to to address the issue in your own way. So I'm not clear what, if anything, you are asking.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 14:21, 27 September 2020 (UTC)

I was referring to cognitive behavioural therapy and I have a very different memory of the conversation but if you say you have done 15 years of cognitive behavioural therapy then sorry, I was wrong. In any case no one here is going to encourage you to a path of self destruction and yes, psychology/science says that attempting to get rid of gayness is doomed to terribly terribly fail. If trying it isn't a path of self-destruction then I don't know what is. ShabiDOO 14:59, 27 September 2020 (UTC)

Well psychology and science say it might be possible to do it in the future and there are ways of doing it now that don't involve conversion therapy. Self destruction however it trying to pass this as good or not a bad thing when experience has said otherwise and you don't feel like it really is "you". I mean we don't say the same for pedophiles or necrophiliacs so why give people who want to stop being gay grief?Machina (talk) 21:35, 28 September 2020 (UTC)
1) Are you comparing LGTBQ+ people with pedophiles?
2) Pedophilia cannot be cured either, only suppressed. Which is honestly the only thing a gay person can do as well. That is, suppress their sexual urges and suffer the loneliness and lack of sexual fulfillment that comes along with it. That in itself would not be self-destructive. Just pointless in most cases though certainly a respectable personal decision if one chooses to. But following the bullshit "techniques that are like totally for sure to work because someone did it they say that like they are...like no longer gay" can only lead to misery. We create a lot of our own misery. ShabiDOO

I don't know, some of the people who performed those techniques seemed happier and maybe they did end up changing, maybe sexuality can change. I mean science has been wrong before and I think there is an incentive to disbelieve those who claim they changed under such techniques because it would blow a hole in the "born this way" rhetoric that the LGBT movement uses. The truth is that we don't know if you can change it and there seems to be incentive to downplay such claims, even progressives hide facts that don't fit their narrative. I've had on/off success with changing it for me, but it never lasts long.Machina (talk) 19:24, 29 September 2020 (UTC)

'born this way' rhetoric is a statement of affirmation in the face of the vitriol from those hiding behind the pretense of a debate on nature vs nurture, who dont really care either way, just want us gone. they suggest 'treatment' because burnings at the stake and gas chambers are out of vogue at the moment.
sure we dont know for certain sexuality cannot be changed significantly or a little. we dont know that it can either. we know studies that claim to have done so have been negligible, often involving the strong religious beliefs of the participants. we know that some treatments have been psychologically scarring. there is nothing to suggest anything is being hidden. there is not a whole lot to hide and 'success' is not easily assessed, dependent on the responses of those in the studies own self assessment.
have those claiming success from these techniques actually had their sexuality changed (and what does that mean here?) or could it be that another facet of their sexuality meets the physical and emotional needs otherwise gained from same sex attraction and is now their focus. in effect, some degree of bi? building on some existent but neglected part of your sexuality is probably a strategy of some kind, if you must have one. if your sexual needs can be met that way. if there is no amount of bisexuality to lean into, then you just left with repressing your desires. cant see how building sexual attraction for hetero or whoever is going to work, if there is nothing there to begin with as replacement.
i dont really understand your motivations here. dont put reasons here if you not comfortable doing so and im not asking for them, but motivation for wanting to change ones sexuality is probably significant to how you would if at all go about that. and i cannot think of any reason that you would, if not for the shame and stigmas of homosexuality and related we've all had varying experiences of, and still struggle with on personal levels. i cannot think of anything else that would 'ruin ones life' but for external homophobia and what we have internalised. AMassiveGay (talk) 21:24, 1 October 2020 (UTC)

I imagine it's similar to acquiring a taste for something and ending up liking it, the brain is pretty elastic after all. I used to hate things and now I like them, and vice versa. MY guess is that such folks weren't bisexual (which speaks more to you not wanting such things to be true) but overcame it through force of will. They didn't suppress their desire so much as transmute it. It's possible. And if you can't give a reason, there are plenty that don't have to do with society. The chief one being that dating is harder for a man who is gay because it's easier to handle a girl not being interested rather than playing a guessing game or relying on gaydar (which doesn't exist but whatever). Your view is quite narrow. Perhaps the person doesn't like gay sex at all but can't stop wanting it, there are cases of people craving something they don't want (it's weird but it happens). Or perhaps a lot of bad experiences with sex with guys, who knows. Calling it external homophobia shows you don't want to drop the narrative you've been filled with. As I have said, it's not the shame or stigma that leads me to wanting to change my sexuality. I just, flat out, don't like it. I would prefer to be straight as it would have made my life so much easier and I would have suffered less and made far fewer mistakes as a result. The LGBT needs to accept that trauma or society isn't always the reason people don't want to be gay. Even without society breathing down the neck of people some still would rather not be gay and it's not on you to try and brainwash them into thinking it's fine when they're clearly not ok with it. I mean if Trans people want to change their gender to what they feel is correct why not those whose sexuality they feel is incorrect?Machina (talk) 06:29, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Machina, please. We want to change our sex characteristics cuz our gender does not match our sex. We don't change our genders. You are comparing metamorphosis to evolution here. Sigh. Explain shortly, why do you not want to be gay?--HedvigsenSkreonk here 10:47, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

I already did explain. As for changing gender that does seem to be a thing especially when it comes to gender being socially constructed so yes we do change our gender, but my point is that we don’t tell trans people that changing their sex is wrong. It’s also not comparing evolution to metamorphosis since neither of the two have anything to do with it. Gender is not evolutionary and metamorphosis is something else entirely. I mean metamorphosis is natural, humans can only change their sex with surgery, which the argument could be made that trans isn’t “natural”. But that’s beside the point, what I am trying to say is that why do we not demonize trans people for changing their sex but other folks we do when they don’t want to be gay or whatever? Why is one ok and the other not? I mean it’s not like homosexuality confers any sort of evolutionary benefit but it still passes on, just like other traits such as vestigial structures or organs.Machina (talk) 15:31, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Machina, it would very much help that when you yet again dismiss my comments so flatly out of hand that its almost contemptuous, please do me the curtesy of at least sounding like you have grasped the points ive tried to make.
you will note i have not dismissed the idea of changes to ones sexuality out i have hand. i have stated research of what we can expect from treatments in current use is limited, with nothing conclusive shown. i didnt say before specifically, but i am dismissing out of hand reparative therapies as they have been shown to be psychological damaging. i have said that what constitutes success in these treatments and how that can be assessed is an issue here. it also an issue of what constitutes sexuality here, with the nature and significance of changes that may be effected will vary from person to person, with a myriad of different factors that can comprise sexuality. we speak too broadly of it here, which does not help a case made for being able to change it. the specifics of an individual can really spell the difference between a maybe possible to not a chance in hell.
in response to what you feel have been successes, i proposed an alternative, where change is not a fundamental shift sexuality but reexamining of what sexuality means for those individuals. i suggested some level of bisexuality to illuminate my point, but was not intended to suggest that bisexuality is the the real cause of any successes, though im sure it is going to be a factor for some. what i mean by 'facets' of sexuality are things like the biological aspects of sexuality, the physical acts of sex itself, the emotional and psychological aspects, the roles you take, the ascetics - a million different things that influence our choice of partner, consciously or otherwise. what facets are the real driving force in an individuals selection? how restrictive is that to a specific biological sex? choosing bisexuality to illustrate was clearly a poor choice. i'll try an example that i feel, should i ever be inclined, an example that i could pull off.
a gay man in the role top, having sex with another man, does not do anything on a physical level that a straight man would with a woman. the act physical penetration need not be dependent on the the biological sex of your partner. to put to crassly, any hole is a goal. but it is not solely physical. for me looks play a part but not significantly. the dynamics of the relationship have with a partner is the vital thing. very simply put, when toping, i go for more guys who are more fem than me, or less masculine. big burly guys dont work for me in that scenario. in other scenarios cute fem boys wont do. if purely topping, a female partner would hit the same beats as my choice of man. i do not consider myself bi, my partner choice has almost solely male. in practice, i am definitively gay. i could, but i wont, swap out men in favour of women. all my emotional and physical needs would be met. i could be just as content exclusively with female partners. in the one singular way, my sexuality has changed. but taken with other factors, is that change significant, can it even be seen a change at all?
finally, on reasons to want change ones sexuality in the first place, your suggested reasons that arnt the result of homophobia of any kind is nonsensical to me. i can envisage ways in whch dating could be problematic for someone, but not as you describe - im not even sure what it is you have described. homophobia, from external sources both overt and insidiously subtle, to what we have internalised of it is far from narrow. its pretty much all encompassing. this is not narrowmindedness, nor is it some conspiracy or failure to address some other issue outside of responses to homophobia. you have stated homosexuality has been ruinous to your life. i dont need your specifics, no doubt deeply personal and this is a public forum. but treatments are of suspect merit and i can see no compelling reason severe enough to consider risking them that do not have its root in homophobia. 'i just dont like it' is not a compelling reason AMassiveGay (talk) 16:11, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

"I just don't like it" is pretty compelling even though you may not find it to be so. But I can honestly say that my life would have been better off had I been born straight. No amount of therapy could get me to like gay sex, yet it's something I crave despite not liking it (like diet soda or for some people cigarettes. I have grasped what you've said but they are the same script being read by those who don't want to think outside their narrative so I don't give it much weight. It's not matter of some level of bisexuality and it has nothing to do with psychology since it's just a purely physical act nor does it have to do with emotion when it comes to the act. The fact is that I am trapped in a sexuality I don't enjoy and at the moment there isn't a way out of it and I am tired of pretending to accept it or feel it's ok when experience and my own feelings tell me otherwise.Machina (talk) 18:25, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

'i dont like it' is really not. we need more. if i am reading you correctly, the issue here is gay sex. the act itself. thats informative, you have not mentioned this as a specific thing here or elsewhere. if so we have been talking at cross purposes. this is not the broader multi varied sexuality. this a specific part with specific issues. there is a position on this to take that does not include homophobia or even sexual orientation. it still might, im not a dr after all, and there still not much to go on. consider this - sexual behaviour you loathe but are obsessively drawn to. compulsively undertaken. this is could be considered a form of self harming. it might not 'fit' perfectly for that, and ive honestly considered the idea around issues of my own. it sounds right but not quite. googling just now though for somethng along those lines compulsive sexual behaviour in common parlance sexual addiction - a term i dislike because i associate it with a trivialised or a made up neurosis. ive not ever really considered it as a result. i like the term compulsive sexual behaviour. it fits a lot better for more issues. but it is still contentious. the pathologising what should be normal sexual behaviour has not a great history. there are issues surrounding treating it as you would an addiction. there is a lack of research because its not yet officially recognised. i cant say if this is answer for you, or how to proceed from there. it might be a new line of attack if you've not considered this before. or it might not. there is nothing more i can add here. AMassiveGay (talk) 20:34, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Hypersexuality is not an actual thing that happens, I've checked that out already. Neither is sexual addiction, that's more of an excuse than an actual condition. And one doesn't really need more than "i don't like it", it's a sufficient reason for most if not all of the decisions we make in our lives. It's not compulsive unless you count sexual attraction compulsive, and it sort of is. It's in the sense of how you experience an attraction towards a set of people that is unwanted but you can't stop it. I don't want to be into guys.Machina (talk) 01:38, 3 October 2020 (UTC)

Not trying to be a dick here, but it sounds less like you are having a personal problem that you are ask RW to solve, and more like you are trying to justify your objective views on what homosexuality is. Or you are trolling. Either way you are giving off hints of an agenda, and based on the track record of why this site was founded, if you want a debate or wax philosophy about it, you can just say so. If none of these two things can be applied, and this is a personal issue that you are trying to overcome, I will echo the advice from those above: you need to get better friends, and should seek a professional to at least talk to. I personally don't think anything is "wrong" with me either, and I still seek therapy because 3rd person perspectives from the professional side are always welcome to better my well being. It also just feels really good to have someone listen to me talk besides my own brain. --Dustythoreau (talk) 13:50, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

I have a problem[edit]

Several days ago I mentioned that I might be gay and not bisexual. I tried looking into what might interest me in terms of guys yet I still feel attraction to women. This is absolutely stressful (yes I have made many discussions in the bar recently). --Possible Goat (talk) 01:23, 27 September 2020 (UTC)

How is it stressful? Sometimes how you feel in terms of attraction just can't be defined by a simple label. It can shift however you feel. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario! 03:13, 27 September 2020 (UTC)
Rather, it's better to not define yourself by labels in general. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 09:11, 27 September 2020 (UTC)
Why do you feel that it is wrong to still be attracted to women? CoryUsar (talk) 16:51, 27 September 2020 (UTC)
It is not really that but rather I simply don't know what I am. I talked with my family about it, my oldest brother told me that it could take years to figure out my identity. Hope I find out soon. Don't need to go crazy even further. Before my dad left when I was 17 and before my sister moved out, they were very judgmental and spoke homophobic nonsense. --Possible Goat (talk) 22:35, 27 September 2020 (UTC)
You don't NEED a label. But if you must have one...
You are attracted to men and women. That makes you Bisexual. If Trans or Intersex doesn't turn you off, then sure, call yourself Pansexual, but not important. If you are only attracted to some types of women, you just have a type, that's all. If you are only attracted to women you are in love with, or have absolutely no interest in casual sex when it comes to women, you are some form of Demisexual when it comes to women. Likewise, you could be Demisexual when it comes to men and into casual sex with women. Either way, that is Bisexual, but with different types of attraction by gender. Now, you could be Bi, but only pursue one gender. Some men are straight, but have sex with men for various reasons, e.g., prisoners who, after a decade behind bars, simply need some form of human affection. Ultimately, only you can decide what you should do.
But, remember, You are You regardless of broad sweeping generalizations. As long as your sexuality isn't causing direct harm, you should not be ashamed of who You are. CoryUsar (talk) 02:34, 28 September 2020 (UTC)
Aren't we slightly different from day to day, week to week? I wasn't a discussion participator when I got up this morning and now I am. We change all the time, often not by choice. Maybe a person trying to define themselves could consider a more loose, flexible definition of 'self'?Dopatap (talk) 02:56, 28 September 2020 (UTC)
Cory, people don't have to be pansexuals to be attrachted to trans and intersex people. Pansexualality is about gender, not sex.--HedvigsenSkreonk here 12:58, 28 September 2020 (UTC)
I went through a version of this myself, Possible Goat. Throughout my late teens, twenties, and early thirties I waited for the shifting attraction to one set of wedding tackle or the other to fade and for my functional bisexuality to resolve into either homosexuality or heterosexuality, partly because people always insisted that bisexuality isn't real and partly because it makes a stable domestic relationship seemingly out of reach. My advice is simply to not overthink it. Committing to one team or the other may make the people you're with feel more secure, but it's much more important to be honest. If you're interested in women one day and something switches in your head the next to make men more interesting only for it to switch completely back the next week (and on and on), then that's just what's going to happen. Sexuality isn't something that can or even should be controlled - individual kinks and unspeakably evil exceptions aside. It's just something you experience. Artificius (talk) 17:49, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Samsies my dude. I'm a bisexual in a monogamous relationship with my g/f. I love her unconditionally, and she I. But yeah, it's stressful. Hang in there man. Have you tried talking to more folks like us? It might help you out, or at the very least you won't feel like your the only one struggling. I would check out reddit's bi threads https://www.reddit.com/r/bisexual/. It also stands to reason that finding your community will help give you a voice in explaining these things inside you to the ignorant. Just remember: the things that turn us on are rational, and irrational at the same time. They are wonderful things, and also apparently they carry baggage - like shame, and feelings of alienation. Don't give into the baggage, or it will tip over and crush you underneath. --Dustythoreau (talk) 13:48, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Trump has COVID[edit]

So... this is going to make the upcoming debates somewhat interesting. Note that on average, for someone 70+ years COVID is fatal 5% of the time. More with other health conditions, such as obesity. I don't think Trump has too many other health conditions; say what you will but he seems to have unlimited energy when it comes to being an asshole. So his chance of survival is still in the 90's. But, interesting times, and while he'll probably live, it's important to remember what a 95% chance of survival means. If you take a baseball bat and beat 100 people into a bloody pulp until 5 of them die, the 95 who survive are NOT having a fun weekend. At least, not unless they are into that sort of thing. Hey, whatever gets your rocks off, you do you.

Also, interesting hypothetical. Trump and Biden were yelling, with no masks on. They may have socially distanced, but they stood near each other for 2 hours. Plenty of time to get enough exposure to get sick. There's a good chance Biden caught Trump's COVID, and Biden is even less healthy than Trump, no matter how good his facelift was. We really should watch the VP debates, because there is a remote but possible chance this election WILL be between Harris and Pence.

Also making things interesting? Let's say Trump lives, but Biden does not. Or you know what, doesn't matter if Trump survives, nearly any scenario where Biden bites it. Kamala was NOT nominated by the people voting in the Democratic primary. I honestly don't know what happens in that situation.

Ok, really, really interesting scenario. What happens if OR((Biden&Harris),(Trump&Pence)) die? Who then becomes the nominee? What if they get elected, but both die before being sworn in? It's a good thing Pelosi got her hair done lately, because there is a real chance she could become President. CoryUsar (talk) 06:17, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

what you basing 'biden is even less healthy than trump' on? we know the state of bidens health prior to any possible infecton, hes told us. trumps never released anything about his that wasnt self aggrandising dogshit. hes hardly looking the picture of health either, being barely coherent at times, other times like he could barely move. or that time when people where convinced he'd had a stroke. a letter from his dr saying he would be the most healthiest person ever elected to the presidency, was dictated by trump. hes a not even very good at it liar so all there is speculation. we cant even take for granted having covid isnt complete bullshit and we'd need him to be be wheeled out feet first for confirmation such is his relationship to the truth. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:59, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Fuck decency, democrats need to rake him over the coals for this. Milk the idiot for all he's worth (which isn't much given his massive debts)-Hastur! (talk) 06:30, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Both the Democratic and Republican Parties actually have a procedure for what happens if their nominee dies: namely, the national committee selects a new candidate. Most likely scenario, they just go with the candidate's running mate. KevinR1990 (talk) 06:57, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Functionally, it'd torpedo that nominee's election chances though. Besides the fact that it's Mike "the closest thing people associate with me is a robot" Pence, this close to the election, they can't possibly campaign enough to get a majority voter share. Trump dying would very likely mean a Biden victory. OTOH, if he survives, Trump can push a hero narrative hard enough and try to use that to win (his nuttier Brazilian counterpart, Jair Bolsonaro got attacked by a protestor and milked a persecution narrative). I'm personally curious to now see how the US's covid response is gonna change in the light of this. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 07:11, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
It's great that everyone is being sensible and analytical here. I must confess that I'm still trying to overcome the almost irresistible wave of schadenfreude.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 07:32, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
I can't help but feel a lot of schadenfreude in this, but it also has thrown every prediction we've made so far about the election out of whack for a bit. It entirely now depends on how things develop. I will say, apparently he's been projected a lower survival chance than other 74 year olds, due to his obesity and unhealthy lifestyle. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 09:24, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
I don't take any great joy from his catching the virus. But I don't feel the tiniest bit sorry for him either. I don't think I'll take any great joy in his death. But I certainly won't be sad. I won't have anything to do with any tributes to his great life. I won't say, "He wasn't such a bad old stick after all." I'll always remember him as a massive arsehole. Spud (talk) 10:11, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
What I want to see is how Garrison and his ilk respond. I look forward to stuff so pleasing that reading it is preferable to partaking it a large, fat slice of good cake.𝔖𝔲𝔪𝔪𝔞 𝔄𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔬𝔩𝔬𝔤𝔦𝔠𝔞 (𝔮𝔲𝔢𝔯𝔢𝔩𝔦𝔰) (𝔰𝔠𝔯𝔦𝔭𝔱𝔲𝔯𝔞) 13:01, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
All I can say is sweet, sweet irony. --Possible Goat (talk) 13:25, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Early on in the pandemic I probably would have felt a lot more empathy for the president and had a lot more tact than I do at the moment. I'm not experiencing any joy, but the prospect of the appallingly negligent Commander-in-Chief falling ill or worse from the sickness which has claimed the lives of 200,000 of his fellow citizens and which he refused to publicly confront for misguided political reasons tickles me in a macabre way. It's a bit like that sense of relief George felt on Seinfeld when his fiancé Susan died, or that scene in a recent IASIP episode in which Frank was choking and none of the gang did anything to stop it. He's an asshole victim, through and through. Artificius (talk) 23:36, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
"Funniest possible terrible world" is the future prediction heuristic psychics wish they had. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 13:25, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Looking at what contracting Covid19 did for Boris' standing in the UK, it would be best not to gloat over what is obviously hubris kicking a halfwit in the ass. But, when Boris contracted it, and it was also hubris kicking a halfwit in the ass, he emerged with renewed popularity. Which enabled him to tear up key functions of the state. It also silenced press & parliament at key moment in crisis from asking critical questions. And when it was announced he was moving to intensive care was moment of national shock. Everything about this is rocket fuel for ‘patriotism’. Donald Trump has the ‘China plague’. If I was Chinese-American, I would be fucking terrified right now. Cardinal Chang (talk) 14:02, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Johnson is also 20 years younger, and while he has carefully crafted the image of always looking like someone had slapped him upside the head with a salmon, British Trump is probably healthier than American Trump. If Trump's COVID is just as severe as Johnson's, well, he's going to have a rougher time of it than Johnson.
Also, not entirely convinced Johnson had it as bad as he did. If it were to come out tomorrow that he exaggerated for sympathy, I would not be surprised. CoryUsar (talk) 14:12, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Be that as it may, it doesn't change the fact that he came out far more popular than when he shambled off to the emergency ward shaking as many hands as possible. Cardinal Chang (talk) 14:34, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Reminds me of the time that guy shut down all the mental health facilities and then was shot by a nutjob that wanted to impress Jodie Foster. Sure, there was no guarantee the assassin would've been locked up in a mental institution had they been open, but those facilities existed specifically for someone like him. But the guy who shut down the hospitals somehow came off as the hero. CoryUsar (talk) 14:40, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
im not sure what contracting covid did for johnson. a week or two off work is all i can see. AMassiveGay (talk) 16:19, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
I’m not convinced Boris Johnson actually received a Corona-related polling boost (https://www.ncpolitics.uk/2020/10/no-boris-johnson-didnt-get-a-poll-boost-from-catching-corona/), nor do I think Trump will have one himself – we Americans have largely made up our minds since the primaries if not earlier. That said, Trump may believe that’s in the offing and could be lying for the sympathy vote, but he probably has finally caught it. Are you even remotely surprised that the candidate who insists on not wearing a mask and having massive rallies has COVID? It was inevitable.
Ah, puts things in a slightly different light then. Maybe it was just me feeling sorry for the sad sack. Cardinal Chang (talk) 20:38, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
On a slightly different note, this is unlikely to motivate his supporters or gain new ones. He's pretended since the beginning that COVID was a complete non-issue, contracting it himself a month before the election makes this impossible. If this is all a ploy - to "catch" it and then to demonstrate that it's not dangerous and/or that he's uniquely robust by "convalescing" faster than other people, then all I've got to say is that it's a risky gambit. He's got way too many eyes on him for such a lie to be tenable even in the short term of a month. Artificius (talk) 17:28, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
It looks like about a third of cases in Trump's age group are asymptomatic. The only thing distinguishing an asymptomatic infection from a lack of infection is test results, and those aren't independently verifiable. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 19:40, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

There is something I want to say, to all the rich and middle-aged/old people out there.

We live in a world with Decisions made by Humans. You have the power to alter those Decisions, and have been using said power for your own personal gain for years. This is nothing new, it's something humans have done since before civilization existed. When a crisis hits, we humans often Decide who suffers more, and it's the rich, well connected powerful people who Decide, even if the crisis was created by them. If there is a famine from poor farm practices, it's not the rich who starve. If the leaders go to war, it is the poor who are drafted and sent to the front lines while the rich and powerful have mysterious disappearing bone-spurs. If we run out of gasoline from intentionally inefficient means of transportation, it's not the rich who will have to walk. If the icecaps melt, it's not the rich who will have to live in flooded homes.

But today, we have a crisis where few Decisions can be made as to who to save. We don't have limited medicine where the rich and powerful can decide to hoard it while the poor die in the streets, we have NO medicine for it. Being well connected doesn't make you immune. If anything, it's those very same connections that make you vulnerable; all your friends, your maids, nannies, support staff, all of them are modes of transmission.

For years, you have used your connections to refuse to pay taxes, to lobby for a more favorable tax structure, or to simply commit fraud and not pay any taxes at all. You have dumped the tax burden upon "lesser" humans. The result hasn't just been poverty, but record levels of public debt. You think you have had the last laugh, but there's a catch here. If the middle class had some wealth, if the public debt was measured in hundred of billions instead of trillions, the best course of action would have been to simply have a hard shutdown of the economy. The debt would grow a bit, people would lose some money, but for the most part we'd all recover with few if any deaths. We could reopen softly, with a hard but localized shutdown whenever the virus reappeared. However, we don't live in that world. With massive debt, and with a middle class that has no savings to be able to weather a shutdown, a hard shutdown simply is not possible, at least not in any situation that doesn't end with the old rich people being spit-roasted to nourish the angry mob. So the only option we've had is the soft slowdown we've had.

That slowdown means that people will die, and we don't get to Decide which people die. You dug this grave, but for the first time in a long time, everyone has to lie in it. Including You. CoryUsar (talk) 16:30, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Well, he's been hospitalised now. Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:26, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

How do we know Biden has not been quarantined for the past several weeks or months? They are not obligated to make a public disclosure. nobsSmile, and be friends.. 06:05, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
RobSmith, how do you know Trump isn't creating an army of gremlins that he feeds with the tears of unicorns? There's no law saying he doesn't have to declare this. I'm just asking questions. ShabiDOO 06:49, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
How do you know he hasn't set up on op-center at Walter Reed, is monitoring his enemies 24/7 with illegal FISA wiretaps, and preparing to implement the Insurrection ActWikipedia? nobsSmile, and be friends.. 08:48, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
They've laid the legal foundation for invoking the Insurrection Act. nobsSmile, and be friends.. 08:59, 3 October 2020 (UTC)

So what would happen if both sets of candidates were struck by the proverbial (preferred disaster movie scenario) in the last month before the election (so it would be difficult to select alternative R & D candidates who can 'show who they are and what they are made of')? And at what point between election day and inauguration day would it be considered expedient upon 'a sitting President's death or removal from office' to have the new President take on the role? Anna Livia (talk) 09:39, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

If the two main candidates were to die before the election? I don't know, but I do know if Kanye West was to right now change his mind and decide to not run for president, it's too late, the polling cards have been printed. Could it be a similar situation with two dead candidates? Do their running mates get the position? Cardinal Chang (talk) 12:32, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
If I'm not wrong, he dropped out in June. ElectrosPardon? 12:43, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Anyone writing a best selling novel/screenplay based on this - I want a cut for suggesting the idea. :)
With the UK electoral system if everybody voted for the minor parties in a 'None of the above' (main parties) protest it would be possible to have Count Binface facing Lord Buckethead which might be 'interesting' - until the next election. Anna Livia (talk) 12:52, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
I hope Trump survives, but gets fucked up so badly that it hurts to breath. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 20:22, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

Chris Christie[edit]

Update. Former Governor Chris Christie has COVID. You may remember him as "that jackass who fucked with my commute". He's 58 years old, so not the highest risk, but he's morbidly obese and has asthma. There's a significant chance that he will die from this.

So it's interesting, we are in a crisis where, for the first time in a long time, the leaders are at risk as well. Great Recession? They didn't go homeless. Cold War? They had their own bunkers. Great Cucumber Shortage of 1992 due to California's condom education program? They still had pickles on their sandwiches. But now, now we are seeing how they react when it's their head on the chopping block...CoryUsar (talk) 16:59, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

There was a passage in Daniel Suarez's "Freedom" that our leadership's response puts me in mind of. I'm paraphrasing, but the gist was that the entrenched elites of a society - the beneficiaries of privilege - will willfully ignore signs of systemic problems in society if they stand to lose in any way from addressing said problems. Same deal with the Oil and Gas industry for climate change and plastic building up in the environment as for the Trump-led GOP leadership and COVID. Artificius (talk) 21:25, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

New Borat[edit]

Seems Sacha Cohen somehow managed to pull it off. It's called "Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan" and seems to have been filmed during the covid pandemic. Premise is Borat trying to marry off his daughter to Mike Pence. Also, seems that he was the disruptor at CPAC back in February. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 11:16, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

I'm looking forward to it, he's a lot of fun. It's a sequel, but even with all that entails about its likely quality you'll probably get a laugh. Artificius (talk) 18:08, 2 October 2020 (UTC)
Didn't Sacha Cohen falsely accuse someone of being a member of a terrorist group. I'm sure it'll be funny but I don't find the man himself to be someone I admire.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/news/sacha-baron-cohen-sued-for-pound67m-over-bruno-terrorist-slur-1837551.html Get ready, it's... (talk) 01:46, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

The case got settled out of court. That said, he's been sued (unsuccesfully) several times over his antics as Bruno and Borat. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 11:12, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
his shtick is getting people to say dumb stuff on camera, when they know they are on camera. dont say racist stuff on camera if you do not want to look racist. and if you really cannot help yourself, dont sign the waiver/release forms. most complaints get dismissed immediately.
cohen is currently being sued for making roy moore look like a paedophile. that ones not being dismissed out of hand it seems. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:10, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Global Capitalism: Rich and Poor Nations[edit]

Oxyaena Harass 11:19, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
You know, you never did answer my question from earlier. CoryUsar (talk) 15:43, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
You mean the one GC tore you a new one over? Oxyaena Harass 16:44, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
1) GC never tore anyone anything.
2) YOU still haven't answered my question CoryUsar (talk) 17:21, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
What was it again? Oxyaena Harass 19:05, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm curious, Oxy. Why do you believe that you, personally, would do better under a communist system? I get the appeal of communism for someone working long hours in a low wage job with no hope of promotion, but you said yourself you can't hold a job, and communists would absolutely have no patience for someone incapable of working. Being autistic you would have trouble making friends, to say nothing of trans issues, so you are all but guaranteed to be sent to the gulags. I don't understand why you believe that communism would somehow work out well for you in particular.
CoryUsar (talk) 19:31, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
Since you obviously don't have an answer, here is an article from (classic) Cracked that I really think you should read. CoryUsar (talk) 23:03, 3 October 2020 (UTC)
Flandres already refuted you on that. As an anarcho-communist, and not a Leninist, I reject your strawman of communism. Under communism there wouldn't be the disadvantage disabled people get in today's capitalist system, because your worth as a human being wouldn't be based on your ability to produce. Everyone provides for each other, mutual aid in practice. Oxyaena Harass 01:14, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Oxy, while I am the first to say some people delight in harassing you and asking you snarky or rhetorical questions for fun, in this case I think Flandres is asking you a totally fair question and it would be only fair to give a straight forward answer. I personally have a hard time working out what your stance is as you seem at times to defend communist systems while at the same time support anarchist ones and these two systems are completely incompatible. Let me rephrase Flandres's question for you...I'll ask two in fact. 1) Forget about anarchism for the moment, do you think you would be better off today in any current or historical communist state than your current living situation in capitalist US? 2) Do you really believe that an anarchist state without a centralized governing body could ever lead to a stable state that could ensure safety, freedoms and a reasonable standard of living for all? ShabiDOO 09:55, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

There is a lot in there that bears comment, but in terms of a big-picture take, prosperity is a result of doing certain specific things right, and the ones that got those right conquered the world. They weren’t the first to try, just the first to succeed, and there are reasons for that. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 01:31, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

Anarcho-Communist societies only support the people they like. That's a big part of the whole "Anarchism" thing. Maybe I don't know you well enough, I can be wrong on this, maybe you really are a wonderful person and various groups should be begging you to join then. So enlighten me.
First, what can you, personally, contribute to society? E.g., can you repair cars, can you herd cows, can you file tax returns, can you perform surgery, etc, what skill or ability do you have to contribute to society?
Second, what could you, personally, offer to someone that would make them want to be your friend? It's not a matter of you "deserving" love, what can you do for someone that would make them want to be around you?
Because the harsh reality is, if you don't have an answer to either of these questions, in every society on Earth, Anarchist, Communist, Capitalist, Tribal, Socialist, you are going to have a tough time. CoryUsar (talk) 02:21, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
You're still applying capitalist norms to personal worth. One's own worth as a person is not defined by how much they can produce. Oxyaena Harass 02:41, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Please answer the questions. CoryUsar (talk) 02:46, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Your questions are based off of a flawed philosophical rooting. You're still holding Western metanarratives about personal worth to be the end all be all of the notion of "worth," whatever that is. Oxyaena Harass 02:49, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
And the phrase "from each according to their ability" doesn't mean that your need inherently entitles you to free shit. It means that EVERYONE contributes as well as receives. I have a need for a surgeon, the surgeon removes my appendix, the surgeon has a need for car repair, so I repair his car. He doesn't get more than me simply because "Capitalist society" has determined that some skills are more valuable than other skills.
So again. Please answer the questions. CoryUsar (talk) 02:58, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Do you not understand the concept of "mutual aid"? Oxyaena Harass 03:36, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Start out with this so you could actually learn something instead of yapping off about shit you have no comprehension of. Oxyaena Harass 03:39, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
But I am asking about mutual aide. I am asking about what aide that you can provide.
So please stop deflecting, and answer my questions. CoryUsar (talk) 03:53, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
The point being your question is irrelevant and misses the mark entirely. Any anarchist society will be based off of the principles of mutual aid and free association, unlike in modern capitalism, where you're forced to remain in one dominant societal superstructure. Oxyaena Harass 08:40, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
The word mutual implies that you also have to give in return. That's exactly what I'm asking about; about what you can contribute.
So once again, please stop deflecting, and answer my question.CoryUsar (talk) 14:52, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Is this user going for sealion of the year award or something? Fucking YIKES. 138.207.198.74 (talk) 15:44, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Wait, me or Oxy? CoryUsar (talk) 15:59, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
You, lol. Oxyaena Harass 11:45, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Would prefer to hear from the BoN before I have to decide what kind of wrong that is. Once again, what are you able to contribute to any society, whether that society is Communist or Capitalist or any other society in existence, and what about you would make you a good friend? The harsh reality is that society doesn't give a shit about anyone beyond what they can do, that's not a "Capitalist" thing, society has been that was since the days of hunter-gatherers and will continue to be that for as long as humans exist. People aren't excluded from society because "Capitalism" can't figure out how to profit from them, people are excluded because they apparently have nothing to offer, and that won't change if we restructured society around Marxist ideals, around Anarcho-Primitivism, around Objectivism, or around God-Emperor Elron Hubcap. CoryUsar (talk) 14:20, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

I think it is pretty obvious in context the BoN was referring to you. They referenced sealioning, which involves derailing a conversation with repeated polite-sounding but stupid questions that often display a clear lack of knowledge about the topic being discussed. Oxy has not done that, whether you think she is wrong or not.-Flandres (talk) 14:38, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
Not just a massive sealion (maybe when someone is this big of sealion we call them a walrus? food for thought), but a painfully, brutally WRONG sealion. 138.207.198.74 (talk) 14:39, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
Well, looks like we now know Oxy's IP address.CoryUsar (talk) 14:46, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
I looked through its contribs. They were... enlightening, to say the least.𝔖𝔲𝔪𝔪𝔞 𝔄𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔬𝔩𝔬𝔤𝔦𝔠𝔞 (𝔮𝔲𝔢𝔯𝔢𝔩𝔦𝔰) (𝔰𝔠𝔯𝔦𝔭𝔱𝔲𝔯𝔞) 14:49, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
That's not my IP address, and the BoN is still right. Oxyaena Harass 20:32, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

I Had a Covid Scare[edit]

Since saturday I've been feeling pretty weak and yesterday (monday) developed some chest pain when coughing, sneezing or burping. Today the pain was full time, but more intense under those afore mentioned bodily functions. Called my doctor and was sent to be tested for Covid19. Getting that fucking probe inserted to my brain through nostril was awful, but not as painful as I expected. Fortunately, it's also not a Coronavirus. I mean I wasn't particularly worried for myself either way. I'm 40, in fairly good shape and have no chronic diseases except for psoriasis (I don't think that counts here) and the mental health issues. But I saw my sister on saturday and she's in a risk group, so I'm fucking happy it isn't Covid. And kinda happy for myself too...I may be a healthy middle-aged person in a country with universal health care, but I still wouldn't want the possible long term ramifications Coronavirus comes with. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 19:00, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

'Fortunately, it's also not a Coronavirus' - that statement sounds like it is missing the second part 'bad news is...'. you sold us on weakness and chest pain increasing in intensity. kinda leaving us hanging. at least tease us with drug resistant tuberculosis or the ticking time bomb of a previously undiagnosed heart condition. i feel like ive earned some closure here. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:41, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Glad you aren't with COVID that would be uber-shitty. As Trump seems to be telling us "we have nothing to worry about" so uhh...I guess we should all go to a music festival and cough all over each other? ShabiDOO 19:46, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
AMassiveGay: I mean they only tested me for Covid. Could be seasonal flu or common cold. Could be tuberculosis, though that seems unlikely in this day and age. Hell, could be lung cancer, though I havent smoked for three years, so that would be weirdly annoying. Still glad it's not Covid. Even if it's cancer, at least that's not contagious. So my sis is safe. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 20:04, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm not sure "not COVID" is the best case scenario, as it stills means you could get COVID on top of whatever this is. So, umm, please stay safe. CoryUsar (talk) 21:02, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
I'll try. In all likelihood it's something like the the seasonal flu though. And that's massively better than Covid where, even if I survived (chances would be good), I might be left with permanent lung damage. And there's no evidence that having the Covid once would grant me an immunity anyhow. Obviously I will continue to take all possible precautions in future. Knight CommanderIn ServiceTo HerGoatness 21:22, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
There's been one documented case of reinfection. Reinfection mostly seems to be a bunch of scaremongering. The whole lung damage thing? Not scaremongering, it happened with SARS 1. CoryUsar (talk) 22:06, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Well a person my mom knew died of COVID, she is in tears about it. Knowing that this happened it makes me even more angry that people think COVID is a hoax. These conspiracy idiots always need a boogeyman to blame instead of biological evolution and possible poor biosecurity measures (China has had a bad tract record of biosecurity measures). --Possible Goat (talk) 23:51, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Where the fuck is my vape[edit]

The Great YouTube Purge 2.0! (I think?)[edit]

Well folks, hope all of ye are well. Just in case you don't spam recent changes, DuceMoosolini and Sirius appear to be having a nice cleaning session, putting old, uncared for YouTube articles out of their misery. If you want to give them a hand (or bitch endlessly about generic talking internet heads who have less subscribers than my mom) head over to RationalWiki:Articles_for_deletion. (I would too, but my account is as fresh as a new-born goat, so cast a vote for me, yeah?) Peace. - Rairyu75 (Talk) 17:49, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

@Rairyu75 The same restrictions don't apply for voting on whether articles get kept or deleted as for voting to block people or change community standards. For one thing, articles that get nominated for deletion are often created by new users who haven't edited anything else and it's only right to allow them to defend their work. I've seen BoNs weigh in on the Articles for Deletion page before and I've taken what they have to say into consideration. So go ahead and say what you think about those pages on YouTubers. Spud (talk) 23:29, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
@Spud Thanks for telling me Spud. It felt kinda weird, cause I'm not one of the regulars just yet, but I voted on a few of the stubs and will mull over the rest. - Rairyu75 (Talk) 21:40, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

Trump's COVID infection[edit]

While Trump is seemingly doing good with the cocktail of drugs given to him, I read that the only reason that someone would get medicine like Trump would be if their infection was severe. Trump literally has every disadvantage health wise. He is overweight, old and likely has high blood pressure. Honestly Trump's doctors have to be lying about his condition or downplaying it. Healthy people have died from infection. The only reason Trump feels good is that he is doped out of his mind. --Possible Goat (talk) 23:56, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

"Trump literally has every disadvantage health wise. He is overweight, old and likely has high blood pressure." You forgot he also fits that other at risk group, low income. At least, according to his tax returns :p Cardinal Chang (talk) 12:56, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Yeah, the other shoe is probably going to drop at some point in the next week or month even if he ultimately survives "falling off the cliff." The finest care money can buy doesn't include a cure at the moment AFAIK, and taking it easy with lots of bed rest won't fly with a guy obsessed with projecting strength and facing the real possibility of an election loss. (edit: Is anyone here capable of speaking to this issue of his treatment authoritatively?) Artificius (talk) 00:24, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Some of the stuff in that cocktail is bullshit — or just unproven and potentially dangerous, so it's hardly the best care. His lead doctor is an osteopath, which is indicative of crankery under the veneer of being an MD-equivalent. Bongolian (talk) 01:26, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
One of the drugs given to him was Dexamethasone - which is well known to cause mania and hyper-excitability.... exactly the sort of "feeling good" that the man remarked upon himself, and not any sort of sign of recovery. And of course he's already ben seen out of breath.... so all in all he's looking just like any other old fat guy with a debilitating and potentially fatal disease. Aloysius the Gaul 02:09, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
2020 has jumped the shark so many times already that it'll honestly be a surprise if he isn't bundled back to Walter Reed by the end of the week. Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 02:49, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
It's interesting to note that being rich and famous can sometimes result in worse medical care So might VIP Syndrome get Trump?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 08:17, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
you have a state of affairs in the us where even the proles are encouraged to demand prescription drugs as advertised on tv. if you are rich and not used to people telling you no, your doctor gets you what you ask for or the next one will. since they are rich and can no doubt afford whatever pills they like,i suppose they wouldnt even have the hoops of trying to justify it to an insurance company. im also guessing if you are the kind of doctor who without question gets you what you want because kerching, your medical profesionalism may not be of the highest standard. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:42, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm going to include this under my own definition of affluenza, spoiled rich people so used to getting their way that they think they can negotiate their way out of medical care. Later, maybe add to the affluenza chunk of the privilege article, in addition to the part I already added regarding spoiled rich kids getting themselves killed because they never learned about consequences. CoryUsar (talk) 14:03, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
with trump, is ego would be enough to think he knows better, but even if he doesnt, hes probably desperate to appear like superman impervious to this disease so deadly to lesser mortals. even if not at deaths door, it mght effect his reelection chances if he looks like he might go at any time when you are filling out your ballot. and hes been so vociferously attacking the health of biden, as he was with clinton, in relation to his own claims of physical well being, i doubt even he thinks he can pull off that lie if hes seen on a ventilator. hes got plenty of people around him to aid and abet any deception i shouldnt think they'd have any problem with leaning on drs. doubt his drs would be too keen with saying anything too pessimistic about trumps health and get accused of interfering with the election. roosevelt went to some lengths to hide his polio, but guess hes more fondly remembered and in doing so he didnt downplay the severity of a disease that has killed and is killing thousands of his countrymen, and whose actions didnt contribute to a not trivial amount of those deaths and likely contribute to more.
its not so much the pretense of health for his reelection campaign thats really problematic here - thats kind of understandable - its saying its nothing, dont worry about covid or do anything that will prevent its transmission because hes (barely) living proof of its mildness. hes going to kill more people as a result. hes still not even masking up, and hes literally breathing death into peoples faces. AMassiveGay (talk) 14:29, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Fun story, a distant cousin of mine was FDR's barber. He told his family about FDR being in a wheelchair, and immediately got punched in the face. You don't say such things about the Leader of the Free World.
Things were different before Nixon came in and revealed that the President can be an absolute slimeball. Not just can be, the overwhelming majority of them were. JFK gets too much of a pass because Murder and Sexy, the guy was a prescription drug addict from his youth and only got his position of Captain due to family, and I'm extremely suspicious about the whole story of PT-109. JFK reinjures his back in the collision, and it's JFK, the spoiled rich kid with a permanent disability that originally disqualified him from Officer Candidate School, whose family basically had to bribe the Navy to give him a posting, this kid is the one swimming to shore while carrying an injured crewmember? Not one of the other crewmembers who weren't injured, and then the military giving JFK the credit, because family? Uh huh, ok, and Pat TillmanWikipedia was killed by the Taliban.
Ok, enough of my crazy JFKaynspircies, but the Presidents were still mostly assholes. That's part of why "Jaynestown" is my favorite episode of Firefly. No really, you don't have to get into Firefly, but you really should watch that episode in particular. CoryUsar (talk) 15:40, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

Can somebody cone up with some fun new pointless polls?[edit]

I'm sick of seeing Godless Raven's dull as ditchwater pointless polls at the top of this page. They're meant to be fun for fuck's sake! Can somebody please replace the boring shit from that humourless shit with a few polls that are actually a bit of a giggle? Spud (talk) 14:18, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

i cannot see where it is they get changed. it links to an archive page. AMassiveGay (talk) 14:28, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Even when he is gone, you still manage to flog the dead horse, a horse that has taken far too much flogging in the past, if you catch my meaning. Fowler (talk) 15:52, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
I used to be into Bestiality, Necrophilia and BDSM, until I realized I was just beating a dead horse.
Jokes aside, problem appears to be within the Bartop template. I'm seeing if I can do a quick fix to it. CoryUsar (talk) 15:55, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
FFS, I can't find the template for the pointless poll because it wasn't created in a friendly manner. Going to have to actually write new code from scratch if I can't find it. Blegh. CoryUsar (talk) 16:19, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
The "archive" is all GR is editting anyways, though. Why do you care about doing it "right" if it works? The content of RW:Pointless Polls is just transcluded here. The help text saying it's an archive seems to be a misnomer. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:53, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
So, does anyone mind if I create some stupid polls now, and figure out the template thing later?CoryUsar (talk) 18:01, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
I speak for all wiki users when I say, no one cares. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:13, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Why is there an edit war in pointless polls? Tulpa001 (talk) 21:08, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Oh never mind. It's just cold feet. Tulpa001 (talk) 21:09, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

@CorruptUser, @Rairyu75 and @AMassiveGay, thank you for actually making me laugh. And @Cosmikdebris, thank you for keeping the Raven shit off the page. Spud (talk) 00:16, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

What happens to US politics from here?[edit]

I was looking at election statistics for Murdoch parties around the world, looking to see if I could statistically verify my hunch that the parties are doomed by demographics without a huge pivot. Using the UK as the example: The average age of Tory voters has increased by about than 15 years in the last 20 and hasn't decreased in an election as far back as I could be bothered the calculate. I was watching a journalist visit the crazy Florida retirement homes where they're shouting Trump from their mobility scooters and basically wanted to ask: If we make the assumption that Trump loses this election by a landslide, what happens to the political geography in the US? Does the Republican party actually have the same demographic problems? Then, with the Democrats sitting *so* far right, what can they do without shaking their base? Maybe it's my optimism speaking, but surely the party will be a damaged brand post Trump. Is there a possibility post 2020 that a proper 3rd party emerges?McUrist (talk) 08:40, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

It's always a possibility, but any emergent and viable third party is unlikely to remain a third party in US politics for long. Because of first-past-the-post, single seat elections (your Congressmen and Senators) we trend towards two big ones: you'd probably see the Republicans suddenly implode over the course of one or two election cycles while the new more malleable party and the Democrats ate its voters or the GOP redefined itself to be able to do the same to the new party. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duverger%27s_law Artificius (talk) 11:51, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
They will just rig elections. After all that's how Republicans held down to power through the Obama years even though though the majority of Americans were left-leaning. —Tuxer (talk) 13:55, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Rigging elections is a bold claim, also something about boys and wolves.McUrist (talk) 15:10, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
This year the prevalence of mail-in ballots hand a lot of power to the federal government, if they can get away with it, to manipulate results. For polling places, you at least tend to have poll workers from both parties who can watch the ballots being collected, and be each others' watchmen. For mail in ballots, there's no partisan supervision. It could get messy. You have to count on whistleblowers. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:24, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
While I do feel like the paranoia by Trump around it is purely because he's trying to figure out how to do it, Trump couldn't organize a piss up in a brewery, I doubt he could be orchestrating a conspiracy grand enough to have even a modicum of an impact. McUrist (talk) 15:31, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Trump wouldn't have to organize it. It would be the state level Republican officials plus some Trump appointed bureaucrats. The Republicans have gotten fairly good at subverting election results through vote suppression and other means. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 15:34, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
We have enough evidence to say that republicans give exactly zero shits about democracy. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:55, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
I guess you are too young to remember the days of Machine politics. CoryUsar (talk) 16:08, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
First past the post single seat is also the norm in Europe. But they don't have only two party systems there. There has been a growing trend for fringe groups to eat bits off centrist parties, probably due to social media. The US has simply had such strong establishment parties that it hasn't happened there yet. And I suspect they are still stronger than they look. Tulpa001 (talk) 16:18, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── The UK is the only European country that uses a first-past-the-post system without readjusting the seats proportionately per the popular vote (in fact most European countries have seats purely proportionately distributed at a national or regional level). And even in the UK the national parliaments (Scotland and Wales) use proportional systems). So I'm not sure where you got the idea that it is the norm (first past the post). A few countries do have directly elected constituencies but then seats are added on top of those to ensure the seats resemble the over all national popular vote as closely as possibly (though sometimes do so by regions which can somewhat skew the distribution, especially in Spain). In fact first past the post is almost exclusively in former British colonies with a couple exceptions like Brazil and Laos and even then many former UK colonies have gone to proportional (like NZ and Australia). First past the post is obscenely undemocratic with majority governments forming in the UK and Canada all the time with less than 40% of the national vote, in a system with an impotent senate/house-of-lords meaning the governments can do virtually whatever they want despite 60%+ people not voting for them. And yet reform is fiercely resisted in England and Canada under the myth that "stable governments" could not be formed otherwise despite most (though certainly not all) of Europe doing so all the time (a couple Mediterranean countries as notable exceptions). It even flies in the face of the most important motive for democracy: the ability to get rid of bad governments which is hard to do when 39% of the people support a bad one and get their way. ShabiDOO 16:43, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

I must be operating on old information. Have you heard of this new thing called the European Union? Tulpa001 (talk) 18:17, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
I just want to clear a minor thing up, since I'm volunteering as an elections official this season: I don't know if it's the same nationwide (though I suspect it is), but in my state mail-in ballots are processed at the county level, not federal, and I'm pretty sure they're counted with multiple representatives of both major parties present specifically to stop attempts to game the election at that level. This is not to say that voter suppression or other manipulation can't or doesn't occur by other means. When it does, it almost always happens external to the actual election mechanics, through things like gerrymandering, not installing an adequate number of polling places in certain areas, or things like "granny farming" where third parties are trusted to deliver absentee ballots. thecnoNSMB (talk) 18:34, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
its not fair to compare the us presidential system with the uk parliamentary system. that they both use a first past the post system isnt particularly enlightening to explain relative shortcomings in the us or uk, or problems with fptp. for one, you are not voting for the same things. a vote for a president is not present in the uk system. we dont vote for the pm directly, nor is it a comparable post. im not even sure voting for the senate is comparable to what we do in the uk either. voting is for your local mp in your constituency, not directly for the pm or government. we only decide who gets the individual seat in your area, its the tally of seats for each party that decides. senators when elected dont then form a government nor do they decide the president. they represent the state electing them, with the states powers and issues of more import than to a constituency. mps are often not that involved in politics at a local level. mps and senators, pms and presidents. they are different things and do different jobs. fptp doesnt really explain the absence of even a third political party not fully. and check and balances is a better explanation than fptp for an unresponsive government. that you are voting fr a singular senator or a singular president plays into things too, i guess. maybe the relative power this people have, at the level of government they exist at. im thinking there are third parties at satate legislatives (i think, i honestly dont know). what does this tell us? the uk fptp is explained by the fact you are voting for a sole mp, proportional representation is not required there, a throwback from the early days of parliament and parties not formally recognised. but for the faults of the uk system, it can be very responsive. it does have third parties and the occasional fringe group can win seats. it does favour a con or lab governments, coalitions being, or used to be, rare, so fringe groups not in government very often. but it is generally responsive. it is possible to get of bad governments. it is possible to relatively easily move to a prop rep ystem of voting should we choose. we had such an opportunity during the con/lib coalition shortly before brexit. there was a referendum. the lib dems fucked it up though so it will be a while before we try again. i cant see how you would change to prop rep in the us though. the whole deal there is not changing anything, and it would have fundemental changes with it that would not be so in the uk. AMassiveGay (talk) 23:07, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm not interested in the US and their political reform because they are fiercely resistant to political change (the constituational amendment required would make it almost insurmountable to allow a quick change) and having two houses with relatively equal power AND because the fact that they have an elected president makes their system incomparable to parliamentary countries. First past the post in parliamentary democracies (with impotent second houses like the Canadian senate and the UK house of lords) results in two-party rule (100 years in the UK and Canada) which is incredibly undemocratic. There is only one exception in both countries with the Lib-dems coalition and the occasional short lived minority governments propped up by other party here and there though without actual power sharing (with the exception of the Lib-dem conservative government the cabinet and ministries have been controlled by the two parties in both countries for 100 years). Very very few of those governments ever won with more than 50% of the vote and yet in most cases had absolute rule. Again, that flies in the face of democratic principles. In Canada, at a provincial level there are a few cases of three party rule but the vote split is so extreme that in a couple cases parties gained absolute rule with 35% of the vote. It's true there are a couple European countries with proportional representation that have had issues (Spain and Italy are occasional examples) but the overwhelming majority do fine and have very healthy democracies. In almost all of Northern Europe every single government is made of coalitions where parties truly represent the political spectrum and can represent important special interests (environment, regional interests etc). This leads to far less radical swings in governments where in the UK and Canada two parties simply take turn rolling back many of the other parties legislation and re-instituting their own and where reform can be much slower and only happen during minority governments. Countries with perpetual coalition governments have an ingrained sense of compromise and collaboration and at least in my experience have far far less rhetoric and a toxic political climate. ShabiDOO 09:53, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I don't think anyone's under the delusion that the US system or UKs FPTP are desirable, they're convenient relics for the ruling parties. There's also a weird by-product in MMP I don't see mentioned much: It seems to exclude the misanthropic parties as, even when they get plurality, they basically never form government. No one wants the be on the receiving end of the shit they'll get in coalition so they either moderate themselves or get selected out. I think the less toxic political climate is also part due to some systems denying media interests control. But on the US: given that there's pretty much going to be no systemic changes, what does the post Trump republican party look like if they get something like 150 seats? Assuming they manage to peel Trump off the seat after. With the whole "trumps army" thing he might not go easily, but hopefully it'll just make him look like more of a pathetic wannabe fascist dictator. McUrist (talk) 12:04, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
it should be noted that the UK system is by design adversarial AMassiveGay (talk) 14:31, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

I'm trying to decide if MMT is woo or not[edit]

I'm trying to form an opinion on whether Modern Monetary Theory or on Wikipedia: Modern Monetary TheoryWikipedia, is fighting pseudoscience in the economic industry, or promoting pseudoscience in the economic industry. However, the RW article on it is stub quality, and has more argument problems than it has sentences. What should I do? Propose it for deletion? Tulpa001 (talk) 18:52, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

All economics is pseudoscience. Scientific framing, claims of scientific credibility, poor if any empirical substantiation. MMT is an idea for how governments should direct their taxation and spending, it's politics, and trying to understand it as science is a fool's errand. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:38, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
I hear a lot of people say it's pseudoscience. Never do I see people demonstrate it's pseudoscience. Though, there is a lot of political bias in the industry, to the point it's often not worth listening to the opinions of high profile economists. Tulpa001 (talk) 20:22, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Those people are morons. Economics, as it is currently structured, is not science. There are parts of the field where it brushes up against science, and recoils like a frightened rabbit against what it finds there. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:36, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Keynesian economics and it's successors tend to be better than most. The Wikipedia article seems to imply that MMT is bullshit, at least as far as I can see. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 21:12, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
I'd say there's much less pseudoscience in Economics than in most other social sciences such as sociology. If an economist is going to make a claim, they at least have to provide some mathematical model which explains why their claim is what it is. For instance, you could make a claim that a monopsony would result in lower employment, and hey, here you go. Now, the models can be wrong of course, but it's slightly less awful than other soft sciences where people can make unsubstantiated claims that can be accepted simply because the groupmind agrees. CoryUsar (talk) 22:22, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
I don't see how sociology is any more "pseudoscientific" than economics. HairlessCat (talk) 23:24, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
@HairlessCat I assume it has something to do with sociologists tending to lean left of center. Either that or Cory is talking out of his ass... ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:35, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
You think putting ideas pulled out of your ass in purely mathematical terms then never ever ever meaningfully testing them in any kind of experimental or controlled way is less pseudoscientific? It's exactly what makes the pseudo part of the term so relevant. If you think sociology of social psychology has a replication crisis, econ is a field rife with utterly untested, much less replicated, ideas.
  • This is the most cited article of all time in the highest impact factor economic journal
  • Do you know what it does? It proposes how to assess the efficiency of a business and its workers.
  • Do you know how it corroborates this?
    • Running a controlled experiment against the previous best understanding of that same metric as a null hypothesis? No
    • Maybe experimenting with money is hard and they compared longitudinal evidence of a large dataset of companies and employees in a retrospective natural experiment? No
    • Well, maybe that information is hard to come by, maybe they just looked at a few select real world examples and ran the calculations? Nope
    • Went up their own ass and talked entirely theoretically about their assumptions about how markets work for thirty fucking pages? Ding ding ding
  • Maybe I'm being unfair, let's look at #2 most cited, ARROW: UNCERTAINTY AND MEDICAL CARE. This one is more up your alley, CU, since it has LOTS of equations. They must come from a very scientific place
    • They come up with this formula for the price of medical care: "DR(P) + Dp(p) = 1.1," Where DR and Dp are the functions for prices for rich and poor people respectively. How do they arrive at this relationship?
    • "It is assumed that there are two classes, rich and poor; the price of medical services to the rich is twice that to the poor, medical expenditures by the rich are 20 per cent of those by the poor, and the elasticity of demand for medical services is .5 for both classes. Let us choose our quantity and monetary units so that the quantity of medical services consumed by the poor and the price they pay are both 1. Then the rich pur- chase .1 units of medical services at a price of 2. Given the assumption about the elasticities of demand, the demand function of the rich is DR(p) - .14 p--5 and that of the poor is Dp(p) = p`. The supply of miiedical services is assumed fixed and therefore must equal 1.1. If price discrimination were abolished, the equilibrium price, p, must satisfy the relation"
    • Oh, turns out they just assume it's true. No that's not the framing for possibly varying those assumed truths as variables, they just assume it, and generate the equation and go to the next chapter, that treats that formula as a given.
I do want to say that the entire field is not like this, just the dominant forces within it. There are plenty of economic empiricists, they show up every generation, get sidelined and complain about it, and then are forgotten, only for people to line up for some dumbshit handing out confident lies like Friedman.
Anyways, @CorruptUser, if you think doing that kind of shit is real science because it has equations, and fields like sociology that mostly have rigorous standards of evidence and experimental methodology to be published aren't because their findings tend to be more restrained, that's because you're actively choosing to be a credulous moron. And do feel free to feel insulted by that, I feel pretty insulted by your lack of thought on the subject. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 02:40, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
What a bunch of bullshit. Economics is a social science. It is not a hard science, I doubt many economists would even think of themselves in that category. But it is hardly pseudoscience. Due to the difficulty of directly observing millions of complex human beings performing complex daily transactions, it is true that economics can lack the rigor that you do see in, say, physics, and some propositions are more theoretical in nature, ala psychology, sociology, and the like. With Arrow, your dissing a paper where a simple executive summary could be a demonstration that standard market-oriented economics can not apply to the health care industry, due to the distorting effects of uncertainty. That's hard to directly test, of course, so I would see it as more a very influential thought experiment... though I do think the American health care industry has demonstrated this principle, in my opinion. I also think that economics *does* tend to use data when it can. The problem with economics is that even when it is possible to measure, drawing a simple conclusion is often difficult due to the massive amount of data. Because of this, in the past at least, there has been an unfortunate tendency for certain economic "factions" to loudly push a viewpoint that fits their narrative. I am hoping with better data analysis this trend will disappear in the future. Minimum wage increases is an example -- there is now a lot of excellent data on the effects of minimum wage, and the effects are pretty complex after all. Sometimes good, sometimes bad, but it's pretty clear that the old classic economist models who would tut tut it no matter what are wrong. At any rate, it's pretty preposterous to compare economics to pseudoscience, a category which includes Flat Earthers and people who ingest bleach. 209.250.252.120 (talk) 03:32, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Of course there's a lot of pseudoscience in Economics, but I've worked with both economics majors and sociology majors, and in general, the economists tended to be more capable of doing higher level math. Yeah yeah, personal experiences and anecdata. Soft sciences in general have to work around the fact that they have trouble doing empirical testing, but that doesn't mean they are worthless. I'd say history is probably more important than any other field, personal opinion I know. But the reason the hard sciences sneer at the soft ones is not because physics is more important than philosophy (which is itself a surprisingly difficult field), but because there's a perception that you have to be smarter to go into hard sciences. Here is a list of majors by GRE scores, note that the hard sciences tend to have much better quantitative reasoning scores than the soft sciences, but ALSO note that the soft sciences have much better analytical writing. So they appear to require a different set of smarts. Also note that economics has an average quantitative reasoning score that's more than a standard deviation above any other social science. CoryUsar (talk) 04:20, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I got a perfect GRE score in math, and one off perfect on verbal. Let me assure you, given that, that it's a terrible basis for assessing anything related to intellectual credibility. Good science has nothing to do with being able to rapidly apply high school level trigonometry after completing university, and everything to do with the scientific fucking method. Being complicated is not the same as being sound. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 05:14, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
It never ceases to amaze me how much sociologists look at economists with envious eyes just because they're good at math and actually follow the scientific method instead of using pure subjective, qualitative arguments. Yeah, that's the difference between science (Economics) and pseudoscience (Sociology) 2804:14C:5B72:867F:E042:7509:D1FD:3E49 (talk) 04:32, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
"Those other fields use qualitative arguments" says man defending a field based on normalizing "preference" as a number. Brainless. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 05:14, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Google "linear regression". It will change your life forever. 2804:14C:5B72:867F:E042:7509:D1FD:3E49 (talk) 06:23, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I am amazed at how fucking stupid you are. How does that fucking sentiment even apply to the conversation we're having? Are you people just brainless? ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 13:47, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
This has got to be the dumbest hot-take to ever come out of your mouth ikanreed. I love how you have the confidence to handwave away a whole field of research as though you have seen something that thousands of other academics haven't. It's not that parts of economic orthodoxy are pseudoscientific, not the history of it, nor laymen understandings but all of it. Anyone else would be a troll, but you really think you are that clever don't you?
To OP, if there is any doubt in your mind about whether a subject is pseudoscientific or not, then it's probably best handled by TOW not RW. RW excels at dismantling really obvious woo, but struggles a bit with the grey area stuff. TOW has acess to a vast userbase, many of which will be economists and researchers who are better placed to elaborate on those topics. RW has a loveable cast of characters (like ikanreed above) who probably love prodding dumb people's dumb ideas more than exploring nuanced issues and topics. 203.54.149.190 (talk) 06:44, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Alright, baby brain, let's see you apply the "science" of economics. Make a prediction about the future with a 95% confidence interval. About anything using any economic model. Apply your science for me. Let's see you apply Peter Diamond's growth model, the 6th most cited economics paper of all time. To make a single solitary assessment about the future. Do it. He's got the math, so the fact that I can calculate now he has retrospectively been wrong for decades shouldn't matter, he's doing science. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 13:47, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I am always a bit suspicious about any field in which there are different groups offering radically different interpretations of the same data. Like macroeconomics. Also each of these schools seems to be fantastic as interpreting past data in such a way that it fits their existing models - but there seems to be little difference in their ability to predict the future. I understand that it's not meant to be a hard science but it does seem to be rather significantly on the soft side.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 08:22, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Psychology and psychiatry has come a long way from the days where Sigmund Freud was babbling about penises. We still don't know a heck of a lot about the brain, but we know a little bit about more hard biochemical data (eg the role of neurotransmitters), and "softer techniques" do at least get tested by randomized trials (see cognitive behavioral therapy). Is it perfect? No -- there are a lot of unknowns. But it's the best standard "for now". Nonetheless, I personally see neuroscience playing an increasing role in these fields in the future, informing the "soft side" of what works best.
Likewise, an issue with the old school macroeconomics has always been the simplicity of its models, often created out of simple direct observation of events which did not fit older models. (Keynes' theories was created in response to how the Great Depression failed classic economic models. Friedman's theories gained traction when the oil shocks of the 1970s seemed to prove him right.) By its nature can lead to factional divisions (as simplistic assumptions will always vary). This problem is amplified by politicians attaching to economic theory from perspectives that are less rational and numerical and more populist. (It would be far, far easier to argue, for instance, that "supply side economics" -- a largely political phenomenon -- is indeed pseudoscience, in my opinion -- to be honest, I don't think too many legitimate economists support it.) But from my perspective, this is changing. Increasingly, I think you'll find statistical oriented approaches, including machine learning, "big data", and analytics, integrated into economics, of which a lot of the field has already moved beyond simple economic models (behavioral economics / game theory for instance is one of the trend du jours). 209.250.252.120 (talk) 15:06, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Maybe the truth is somewhere in between: Most economic models are fairly good at predicting outcomes by certain metrics, but because economics is entirely based on statistics or simulation instead of experimental data (because honestly, how can you expect them to get constrained experimental results from an economy) there's too many unadjusted factors, poor feedback and often "paperclip maximiser" type oversights. It's on the soft end of science for sure, but boy do I dislike verysmart people dismissing entire fields because they've decided the field is not pure enough for their enlightened brains. McUrist (talk) 11:06, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
"but boy do I dislike verysmart people dismissing entire fields because they've decided the field is not pure enough for their enlightened brains." I love how people are up in arms that ikanreed dismissed economics, but these very same people were suddenly mute when CrorruptUser did the same for sociology. I'm not accusing you all of double standards, I'm just noting that you might need to rethink some things. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 13:48, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
And I didn't dismiss the entire field of sociology, only claim that it was less scientific than economics. CoryUsar (talk) 13:51, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
And I just entered the thread, and it's not exactly specifying what I should rethink, and why not hold me to the defence of literally anything mentioned in this thread about economics. This comment is an enigma. McUrist (talk) 14:21, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
@GrammarCommie And frankly, it shows a complete lack of ever reading a sociology paper in a respectable sociology journal. Just try finding a single paper in the american sociology review that applies anywhere near as grossly suspect methodology as the American Economic Review papers I posted above.
@McUrist "Most economic models are fairly good at predicting outcomes by certain metrics but [...]" If I had ever seen anything showing that to be true, I would not be taking that position. If I saw evidence to that effect now, I'd change my opinions; I don't care how brash and confident I am in my current argument, I'd admit to being wrong. I have some standards for what would qualify as that kind of evidence, but nothing too extreme(e.g. I suspect but don't know that behavioralists have more credibility than the rest of the field, and wouldn't find them being right reliably as surprising). ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:03, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
@CorruptUser Actually to the effect of my reply to McUrist, I never answered your very early post about monospony, did you look at the "empirical problems" section of the wikipedia article you linked? For all the theory, there's very little tie of actual material evidence to the conclusions economists came up with outside extremely small markets like professional sports. And monospony is one of the more parsimonious and reasonable economic ideas in the field, which I still insist is full of complete garbage. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:12, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Was I knowledgeable enough on the subject I'd probably use some of the examples where a significantly majority of the economics community has predicted an negative outcome, been ignored and then proven right: one that jumps to mind in recent history is the UK response to the 2008 recession that was fairly unilaterally panned by economists at the time. Though that's aside from my point: Even if they weren't particularly accurate, it's like saying chemistry is worthless because it gave us phlogiston theory.McUrist (talk) 14:21, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I love how people are up in arms that ikanreed dismissed economics, but these very same people were suddenly mute when CrorruptUser did the same for sociology. Of course, I would do the same if we were comparing Astronomy and Astrology after all. It's just not fair to compare a science with a field based on PIDOOMA. Economics not a hard science, you can't predict things. Yeah, the tools used on economics aren't perfect. Is this a reason to use more abstract arguments and less rigorous methods that are nor based on evidence? Funny how both the left and Paulbots use the same argument. It must suck to be bad at math. Oh, and economists agree more than you layman think. As for ther topic, yes, MMT is massively pseudoscientific, even if the article is not very good. 2804:14C:5B72:867F:E042:7509:D1FD:3E49 (talk) 15:07, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
@ikanreed My Polisci teacher said it best. "Theories are lenses through which we see the world." That's obviously much different than in the hard sciences; physics doesn't have "the Theory of Invisible Rubber Bands" and "the Theory of Bowling Balls on a Rubber Sheet" to describe Gravity. That's what the soft sciences use, because, well, there's no way to do anything better. Rather than empirical testing, they have to analyze each case in terms of how well each major theory explains the scenario. In polisci, it's Realism, Constructivism, and Liberalism. None of them are truly "wrong" or "right", but help to make sense of the world. And the reason that no theory will be able to always explain every event that happens is because we are studying people, and people aren't perfectly rational beings. While a sociopathic country may do X, sometimes the country will do Y instead because the people or their leaders actually do want to do what they see as the "right" thing to do even though it's not truly in their absolute best interest. Sometimes the leaders are acting on incomplete information, sometimes they are acting on information that is just plain wrong.
Economics isn't all that different in this regard. The competing theories aren't entirely "right" or "wrong", but rather, lenses through which economists make sense of the world. The math thing isn't just tacked on after the fact, but rather, a way to try and make sense of things. Problem is that people are, well, human, and humans don't act logically. In hard science, if you mix a specific amount of chemicals, you will always get the exact same result (at least as near as the eye can tell). In soft sciences, if you do the exact same sequence of events you aren't guaranteed to get the exact same sequence of results.CoryUsar (talk) 15:32, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
The difference is that "bowling ball on a cloth" is a way to visualize mathematical laws that were verified extremely well by direct measurement, far before the visualization was created. There are non-scientific lenses of interpretation that have value, just by letting you focus your vision, but it's really really important that you don't confuse them with science, which builds itself on testing ideas against reality. And the softness of soft sciences aren't an excuse for failing to use theories to make predictions and reject theories that don't work. And hard sciences aren't free from problems of absolute predicability. Quantum physics makes all sorts of reliable "soft" predictions: conservation of momentum won't be violated, even if you can't precisely and reliably determine the momentum of a particle in a given moment. Social science reliably shows things like: child abuse predicts negative life outcomes as an adult across cultures, or that people primed to think about something tend to perform better on mental tasks related to that subject. Economics, as a field, mostly doesn't do that. It could be a science, but it's not. It's like phrenologists assigning very precise equations to head bumps, but completely glossing over the lack of empirical validation. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:12, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Just to be sure. Are you so pissed because some people ITT said they don't respect Sociology? Would your opinions toward Economics as a science be different if Sociology wasn't mentioned? Because I'm trying to be coherent here. I have no respect for sociology at all, and I think comparing the many epistemological problems of Economics with Sociology is basically supporting Trump because Biden has many many flaws. 2804:14C:5B72:867F:543C:CB6D:AFA6:CCF7 (talk) 17:36, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
My opinions on economics came first. Nottheless sociology is more credible scientifically than econ, and its problems in that area tend towards institutional pressures against academics, rather than the ideological underpinnings of the discipline, making them easier to reform. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:56, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
So, just to be 100% sure I understood you, you mentioned that you felt insulted when Cory criticized sociology, right? And yet, you feel like you can insult Economics? Now that's better. Your problem is therefore ignorance on the subject, not only anger because some people on the Internet despise your beloved subject. That being said, as I'vw mentioned before, I'm partially on the same boat since I consider sociology gibberish pseudoscience, even if I don't feel pissed when people talk about economics just like you admittedly did since that often just show their lack on knowledge on the area. 2804:14C:5B72:867F:543C:CB6D:AFA6:CCF7 (talk) 18:43, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
For god's sake, you don't need to reiterate for the ten thousandth time that you have stupid and innane opinions based on your own gut instinct, just shut fuck up. Stop restating your beliefs without any evidence. I don't care. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:52, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I've already mentioned your flaws. You just said "wow, you can't predict how people will act with the same accuracy as in chemist, so we need to use more a more abstract approach!" That is, simply put, a strawman and shows that you have no idea how much econometrics have advanced since the second half of the XXth century. Indeed, you'll make mistakes sometimes, but when you are creating a good model they tend to disappear, and even if they don't that's not an excuse to use less rigorous methods that have no resemblence with scientifi method. I repeat, just Google the words "linear regression". If you weren't talking about sociology I would assume you were a Paulbot, their arguments are the same as yours. 2804:14C:5B72:867F:543C:CB6D:AFA6:CCF7 (talk) 19:44, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
So... do you have a pan? ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 01:53, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Actually, I was the one who pointed out the weird hatred of sociology, not ikanreed. I can link the dif links if you want. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 03:31, 9 October 2020 (UTC)

A counter argument to "COVID is no worse than the flu"[edit]

Okay, COVID deniers just love to say that the current pandemic is no worse than the flu. Here is my counter argument- there have been flu pandemics that have killed millions of people in a short period of time. Also, they only cite the seasonal flu. They happily ignore flu pandemics. --Possible Goat (talk) 14:07, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

Here's a true statement: "COVID is no worse than the spanish flu" ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 14:12, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm... actually not so sure that's true. While the Spanish Flu was 5 times as deadly (and COVID in turn 5 times as deadly as regular Flu), that's with medical practices from literally a century ago. What would the COVID death rate be if we didn't have antibiotics or respirators? CoryUsar (talk) 15:00, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Is it frequently causing downstream bacterial infections? Why do antibiotics matter? I'll concede we have more and better automatic respirators now. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:54, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Around 7% of COVID patients have a bacterial infection in the lungs. Not a lot, but when talking about millions of people...CoryUsar (talk) 19:06, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
The 1918 flu pandemic lasted more than two years. So far, we're still in year one of the COVID pandemic, so unless one compares similar time frames they're not comparable. Bongolian (talk) 19:59, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
You misunderstand me. Spanish Flu didn't kill 5 times as many people as COVID, Spanish Flu has an infection mortality rate 5 times as high. You absolutely can compare any two diseases on this metric, though it helps to also consider how quickly it transmits. Spanish Flu is estimated to have a transmission rate of 1.8, while COVID is now estimated at around 2.2 (much lower than initial estimates, but still super-fast). Basically, if we all acted like normal, 4 out 9 people would get Spanish Flu if it came out tomorrow, whereas 6 out of 11 would get COVID. That means that COVID doesn't need to be as deadly as Spanish Flu in order to kill the same percentage of the population. CoryUsar (talk) 21:13, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
OK. Bongolian (talk) 03:17, 9 October 2020 (UTC)

Attempted terrorist attack against the Michigan state government[edit]

https://news.yahoo.com/fbi-busts-militia-plot-abduct-163410333.html?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly9zZWFyY2gueWFob28uY29tLw&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAChU2sQVc7VtCUNDKm0l_qxN46jmL8icj5rSXoLsqBUoMbiYKZz8BQn6OD0qoQt2raFWicl5ayvYpcLPfN7ukTs8a3_PdWGE4WfQY7Krjprbd1KqdX04qJgm-fy5O-JWqpu9vMZhgQcujDNRhqihsocUHv7O4rSPFMtAosfa-QmO

White supremacist militia members plotted to kidnap Governor Whitmer. Their intention was to start a fucking civil war. The FBI arrested several members of a militia group. If this is not terrorism then I don't know what is. Right wing nuts cry about Islamic terrorists (which obviously exists, nobody is arguing about it) yet I am more worried about White supremacist organizations. --Possible Goat (talk) 20:15, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

It's terrorism, absolutely. I think the WIGO needs an update though, I haven't seen a source that states that the Proud Boys are directly involved. Most sources like this claim that this is an obscure militia group who named themselves the "Wolverine Watchmen". The main link to the Proud Boys is the rhetoric of Donald Trump -- just like Trump not only didn't denounce, but actually encouraged the Proud Boys at the 1st presidential debate, he stoked up the Michigan anti-mask protestors in April with tweets like "LIBERATE MICHIGAN!" That rhetoric is certainly one of the reasons to worry more about white supremacists these days. 209.250.252.120 (talk) 20:35, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
On the plus side, they were caught. Either they were a bunch of bumblefucks or the FBI is actually taking right-wing threats seriously. Or possibly both. CoryUsar (talk) 21:14, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
White Supremacism was always something to worry about, it has been viewed as a major terrorist threat for decades. But, the public got side tracked with the blowback that was 9/11 and the convenience that those tan skinned people in the desert who worship a different Deity want to destroy "our" way of life. Shame many failed to see that foreign policy by "our" leaders was destroying their way of life for decades beforehand Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:17, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Bumblefucks, hahahah. What was the title of the essay by Bruce Schneier, Portrait of the modern terrorist as an Idiot? It's always worth a read https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2007/06/portrait_of_the_1.html Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:20, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
@Card If the US's foreign policy is to blame for Islamist terrorism, given the US's abuses of Latin America, why aren't there similar amounts of Latin-Supremacist terrorism? CoryUsar (talk) 21:23, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Couldn't tell ya. Different pressures in the Latin America, compared to the middle east, And some states managed to overthrow their dictators in Latin America, unlike the continuous jackboot on the neck of much of the middle east Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:25, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Also, you'll note I said "our" leaders, not US leaders. I'm not American. You forget the Uk, France, Germany and Italy fucked that region up before the Yanks set up Standard Oil. Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:28, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I do find the whole thing unnerving. Plenty of right wing nuts in my area who would happily join in said violence. Welcome to Michigan- plenty of militia nuts. --Possible Goat (talk) 01:08, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
it's official - Among DVEs, racially and ethnically motivated violent extremists—specifically white supremacist extremists (WSEs)—will remain the most persistent and lethal threat in the Homeland. Aloysius the Gaul 03:05, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Terrorism seems to be primarily right wing these days. Like the anti-communist militia forces the US funded and trained in the middle east. Maybe the reason why no Latin terrorists are hitting the US is because all the right wing paramilitary in the Latin world actually like the US. Tulpa001 (talk) 12:02, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
I don't think that's it at all, considering that the European Far-Right tends to be anti-American, and if they are pro-American, it's only because the Far-Left over there is anti-American. CoryUsar (talk) 19:30, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Have you ever thought that European and Latin American Far-rightists might be just a little different? That they might have a different set of claimed historical grievances which leads them to have differing views on the same country?-Flandres (talk) 19:34, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm sorry What? The European Far Right tends to be Anti-American? I'm not sure what European far right nutters you're seeing, but they love the Confederate flag and QAnon shite over here in Europe. We do not have a legal or constitutional definition of Free speech in Ireland and the UK (unsure in the rest of Europe) although there is protected speech and freedom of expression, but you'll generally hear "free-speech" being uttered from the gobs of the knuckle dragging hate mongers with regular refrain. But lets be clear, the white supremacists appearing on the streets of America brandishing weapons are certainly different from the thugs over here. American Far Right is something most counties would in a normal year, with a normal and healthy functioning state, be utterly embarrassed and ashamed of. (also, AMerican money funding the far right https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/5050/the-american-dark-money-behind-europes-far-right/ Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:37, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Also, the far left, heck it's not even the far left, it would be progreesive left, and left of centre would have a healthy dislike to America, because, and lets be clear, they oppose imperialism. The US is an Empire in all but name, and has been since the Declaration of Independence, unless I've read Zinn wrong. Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:40, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Golden Dawn regularly burns the American flag. Front National sides with Russia on the Ukrainian invasion, claiming that the crisis was actually because the US was subjugating the Ukraine. CoryUsar (talk) 22:31, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Golden Dawn? Who endorsed Trump when they were in parliament? Oh ok, I can see how that would be viewed as anti-American!. And is it Front Nationale or National Rally? One is a fucking horrendous political movement, and the other is a fucking deplorable one. But, anti-american? Are you certain? Considering where the funding comes from these days? Cardinal Chang (talk) 07:13, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm given to understand that the balkanization and tribalization on the far-right creates a unique situation wherein you can vitriolically hate the homeland and people of the politician whose policies and rhetoric you love and embrace. The Golden Dawn probably sees a kindred spirit whenever Trump rails on the immigrants from "shithole countries" and Muslims and like the implications of Trump pulling America out of NATO. Artificius (talk) 21:40, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
The terrorist plot made front page news with the title Right Wing Terror Plot Exposed. In the article there was a mention that several more people were arrested. All face life in prison. On a different note, it is amazing that newspapers still exist. --Possible Goat (talk) 23:02, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
It is, and isn't it just as well they somehow do. Unfortunately, newspapers are in decline due to consolidated ownership, and loss of revenue including eyes on pages. In many cases the public don't care, have too many local and personal concerns to be depressed with horrendous news stories of what their leaders and trusted institutions are doing to them. In your neck of the planet, have you checked out Pro-publica and the work they do? Cardinal Chang (talk) 07:20, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

John Brennan (formerly head of CIA) has released a book[edit]

Does anyone think it will be good/bad? Anyone going to read it? 1.136.104.53 (talk) 20:05, 9 October 2020 (UTC)

What is the book about? --Possible Goat (talk) 22:59, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
About a woman unhappily married in the 13th century who falls in love with the kings page boy. It's filled with romance and set in a time when a war is brewing between warring families. You'll laugh, you'll cry - it'll change your life. I give it two thumbs up. AceModerator 02:05, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
That's his other book. This one is a SF novel about a guy who is half space-vampire half viking-werewolf and who, unaware of his ancestry, has to fight the Evil Galactic Empire. Will he be able to overcome his space-vampire tendencies long enough to allow his his berserk werewolf side to defeat Dark Lord of the Underworld and rescue the beautiful galactic Star Warden? Read the book to find out!Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 11:21, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

In Search of a Flat Earth short film[edit]

Really well worth watching YouTube vid. Basically a very interesting take on conspiracy theories - specifically focusing on Flat Earthers and how they relate to QAnon. AceModerator 02:04, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

I watched it, and I highly recommend it. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 02:56, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
If you meet a flat Earther, tell them they should spread their message around the world. CoryUsar (talk) 07:47, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
I never really understood what the end game of covering up the shape of the Earth would be. --Possible Goat (talk) 12:19, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
It might be in the vein of what the video's talking about: If the worlds flat, then satellites aren't real! That means planes aren't going anywhere, so they're dropping chemicals and the birds are all robots built by the lizard people running the government! It starts by filtering out all but the absolute most ignorant and convincing them of a first major untruth, that (it has been alleged) makes them feel uniquely informed, then you can build a world from there. The flat earth isn't the endgame for the "system", it's that nothing the scientific community has fed you is true. I've only met one flat earther and honestly it was hard to follow, but no surprise flat earth was not even the most bizarre part of their worldview. McUrist (talk) 19:22, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
Thinking about Flat Earthers in the vein of "people who think the Earth is flat" is actually a mistake. I know, that seems counter intuitive doesn't it? Here's a slightly different lens; People who believe all manner of conspiracy theories but all happen to believe the Earth is flat. This makes more sense as Flat Earthers tend to use their common denominator as a springboard for other conspiracy theories. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 21:47, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

Did drugs prices drop?[edit]

Luckily my relatives and I are healthy, so I can't know directly. Did drugs prices drop? -TheOldMan (talk) 12:05, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

Trailer for my YouTube Halloween special[edit]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEmkwoWLdqQ

I think that I chose awesome music for the trailer. Took me an hour to create a 33 second long video. --Possible Goat (talk) 12:23, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

You[edit]

I have been treated with the same level of hatred by everyone I've ever met, except one other person. Whether or not I deserve it, I am my own self and only myself, so I am the only one I can defend. Your rejection is absolutely nothing new to me. But you can all shove a fat one up your asses. I attempted to make a comeback and legitimately become part of the group, and I should have known that interacting with humans again would just come back to bite me.

I don't consider myself or my special one to be human.

I only hope that you vote against Trump so he can get out of office and stop oppressing my family, not because I care anything about you.

Also, down with Christianity. That religion is horrible and the Christians don't like me.

And incels. They just reject everyone with any level of decency.

And RationalWiki! For also rejecting me. Even though I hate all the things mentioned above just like you do.

It's the adult expectations of normativity that got them all to reject me, including you.

You guys don't believe me though. But that's okay, because only I can ever know me. Gem Hunter (talk) 19:02, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

Am I supposed to know who you are? ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:05, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Oxy? CoryUsar (talk) 19:10, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
I was named after Gemma Galgani. I cry about it nightly. Gem Hunter (talk) 19:19, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
But what was your prior user name here? CoryUsar (talk) 19:46, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
This strikes me as a very, very casual space, so not the best place to try for community. I could be wrong. This looks to me like a standard victim of capitalist alienation and a world built for the pleasure of neurotypicals. Tulpa001 (talk) 11:27, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Aspie here. The world is built for neurotypicals because humans are social creatures and of course the social environment is going to be built around being, well, social. There is nothing "unfair" about this, the real problem I have with this world is the whole song and dance we do because society doesn't let people be honest. If a girl doesn't like a guy, she can't say "you are ugly, dress like a schmuck, have poor hygiene, and your 'talents' all involve pop culture trivia", nope, she has to say "well, I think you are nice..." to avoid an argument. So an aspie like me? I have no way of finding out what I'm doing wrong. On a job interview, the employer isn't allowed to tell you just why you are a terrible candidate, because then you could sue them for some BS reason, and even if the company wins, they still have to eat the legal costs, so again, you'll never know what you need to work on. That's something we should fix somehow, but even in the improved world, this better world will still be built for neurotypicals.
Now for the "capitalist alienation", that's just a bunch of pseudo-intellectual BS. "Alienation" has existed in absolutely every system on Earth, it's just how humans are. We should be more accepting of "weird" but otherwise harmless people, and to some extant we've improved in this regard as being gay is no longer "too weird to be allowed to exist". However, there will always be those that are too weird for the rest of us. I don't think anyone would be comfortable living next door to someone with a sexbot that looks like an 8 year boy, even if studies could prove that pedophiles with sexbots have absolutely no increased rate of sexual assault over the average person, that will still be too "weird" for society. And this acceptance has effectively nothing to do with economics. CoryUsar (talk) 18:46, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Alienation has indeed existed forever. Capitalist alienation is caused by capitalist belief structures. If you think that's bullshit, you might be right. I've never seen a study confirming alienation caused by capitalist thinking. So I cannot personally confirm. On the other hand, if you fail in life, who's fault is that, and if you succeed in life, who's fault is that? If you say you, congratulations, you are a member of the capitalist belief system.
Can't disagree with the rest of what you said though. Though I do like the intellectual BS. Books are so hot. Tulpa001 (talk) 04:49, 11 October 2020 (UTC)

Denver shooting[edit]

https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/10/10/denver1011/

It seems that a security guard hired by 9News shot a participant of the “Patriot Rally” -TheOldMan (talk) 08:50, 11 October 2020 (UTC)

You should have put your signature after the link. Spud (talk) 09:14, 11 October 2020 (UTC)
@Spud Fixed.-TheOldMan (talk) 09:32, 11 October 2020 (UTC)
You know, given the uncertainty that they faced, as well as things like the Rittenhouse incident, I can hardly blame the news channel for hiring mercs. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 10:12, 11 October 2020 (UTC)
Well, the same apply to any citizen, not just the press. Hiring security guards is entirely legal, the issue is if the shooting was justified.-TheOldMan (talk) 14:45, 11 October 2020 (UTC)
From what I've seen, the deceased attacked a reporter and then the sprayed the security guard with bear mace, possibly in the process of the guard trying to protect the reporter. From that alone, I would give a soft yes to the shoot being justified. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 17:24, 11 October 2020 (UTC)

A piece of pseudoscience from a Facebook ad: might be worth an article[edit]

https://brainmd.com/brain-health-coaching-certification-course?utm_source=fba&utm_medium=social-paid&utm_campaign=bhccc&utm_term=clients_copy&fbclid=IwAR23Xm418R6e5G_DzbG299T3RwADgwqrteaSMckZcKdyqDHdWgVLbt9KU88

I admit, they do a good job at sounding scientific. --Possible Goat (talk) 15:53, 11 October 2020 (UTC)

Physicists Build Circuit That Generates Clean, Limitless Power From Graphene[edit]

"A team of University of Arkansas physicists has successfully developed a circuit capable of capturing graphene's thermal motion and converting it into an electrical current."

https://news.uark.edu/articles/54830/physicists-build-circuit-that-generates-clean-limitless-power-from-graphene

I don't believe it.-TheOldMan (talk) 16:41, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
The actual paper is paywalled and not on sci-hub. If we could review their methodology we'd have something to talk about re believing it or not. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:22, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
There's a copy on the arXiv: https://arxiv.org/abs/2002.09947 -TheOldMan (talk) 17:29, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
Hm. Seems overstated. Even the abstract makes that clear: "The system reaches thermal equilibrium and the rates of heat, work, and entropy production tend quickly to zero. However, there is power generated by graphene which is equal to the power dissipated by the load resistor. " So they're not claiming "unlimited free energy". They're just capturing differential heat energy in a way that defies conventional expectations. No second law violations here. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:15, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
The law of entropy is a statistical average of all possible movements of a system. In theory, extremely small systems should occasionally, randomly, go backwards and produce energy differentials. I have no idea if this is harvestable. This paper, apparently is answering my question for me. It is harvestable. But I want a physicist to confirm it's not a hoax paper.
Also, there's a battery in the middle of their circuit. Please repeat without battery. Tulpa001 (talk) 19:28, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
The "limitless" in the headline is - at best - misleading.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:32, 7 October 2020 (UTC)
It's limitless the way regenerative braking is limitless energy. It captures energy that normally gets wasted. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:43, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Without actually having seen that paper, I also suspect it's overstated or implausible. On thee other hand, scientists have developed a working prototype for limitless passive cooling based on high-efficiency reflection of electromagnetic waves into space using a nanomaterial. The physics principle is actually uses the same one that pre-modern South Asians and North Africans used for making ice in the desert.[1] Bongolian (talk) 04:22, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

I gave a look at the paper and it seems really cryptic. At some point is says:
"Our model provides a rigorous demonstration that continuous thermal power can be supplied by a Brownian particle at a single temperature while in thermodynamic equilibrium, provided the same amount of power is continuously dissipated in a resistor. Here, coupling to the circuit allows electrical work to be carried out on the load resistor without violating the second law of thermodynamics."
What the hell does this mean? It seems like they are saying that thermal energy can be converted in electrical work as long as that is then dissipated as thermal energy... That's still against the second law of thermodynamics.-TheOldMan (talk) 14:49, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Second law of thermodynamics is only as good as the empirical evidence to support it. If this thing works it might very well disprove the 2nd law. Alternatively, it could expand out understanding and create an addendum to the 2nd law. Further, we could discover that brownian motion is not the end state of entropy and there is a further state which can be reached which is truly irreversible. Finally, quantum fluctuations can temporarily cause ordered states by random chance, essentially causing entropy to decrease in the system. Using a piece of graphene at the atomic level is definitely going to be governed more by quantum fluctuations than conventional physics. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 15:26, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
@MirrorIrorriM I understand that the second law of thermodynamics (like any other law of physics) is not a dogma. Anyway the author claim that their result does not violate the second law of thermodynamics while, at the same time, it seems to me that it does. That's the source of my disbelieve. It would make more sense to me if their claim was that they discovered a violation of the second law of thermodynamics due, as you mentioned, to some quantum effect.-TheOldMan (talk) 15:50, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
While science is not dogma it's kind of unlikely that the second law has been overturned (if this is actually what's being claimed). It's also kind of unlikely that there wouldn't have been more notice taken if it had. The idea that the earth is not flat is not "dogma" in that it could theoretically be overturned by observations. But it of kind of unlikely that such observations will be err ... observed.
Although the second law of thermodynamics is not quite up there with the Earth being an oblate spheroid it's certainly on the previous level. If this study does demonstrate a violation of the second law then I'm wondering why it wasn't in Science or Nature. And I won't be preparing the salt and pepper for when I need to eat my hat.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 14:06, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
The definition of entropy can be tricky to grasp, but this circuit does not violate the 2nd law of thermodynamics because it doesn't decrease entropy in the system. Entropy is very specifically the motion towards thermal equilibrium of a system in thermodynamics. In information theory it is related to the amount of information necessary to describe a system (with chaotic systems requiring more information). Two important facts here: You can decrease entropy in a local system as long as the universe's entropy as a whole remains constant or increases, and the entire system of this circuit must be at an equilibrium temperature in order to work. If they have found a cheaty way to keep the information in the system constant while maintaining thermal equilibrium, anything is possible. Very specifically they are taking advantage of the fact that graphene is such an orderly molecule that its vibrations are not completely random, so it oscillates in a manner which can be captured by a rectifier circuit. This circuit actually does nothing special, it is graphene which is violating brownian motion and they are just taping that power in a very simplistic manner. Graphene was only first isolated from graphite in 2004, so Richard Feynman couldn't have known about it when he made his assertion that brownian motion can't do work. This device also does nothing to stop heat radiation eventually chilling the system with time, which means the total entropy of the universe will still increase over time, which is the only real hard fast part of the 2nd law of thermodynamics. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 18:19, 13 October 2020 (UTC)

Social anarchy[edit]

What would the 90s in America have been like if it were a social anarchy, and racism, sexism, and other forms of traditionalist bigotry didn't exist, and adults were allowed to act like children? That's the world I want to live in. Gem Hunter (talk) 19:10, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

Uh, racism and bigotry will always exist, anarchy or no. People are assholes, and that's not the fault of the system, maaan. You might as well ask what the 90's would have been like if people had no urge to have sex. CoryUsar (talk) 19:14, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
It's a little bit the fault of the system. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:29, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
"adults were allowed to act like children" Looking at the current President - isn't that the situation in the US now?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:31, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
So we have both social anarchy and a lack of bigotry? Well I'd say it would be nice because of the lack of bigotry (at least nice for people who suffer from bigotry...not nice for people who build their power base, self-esteem, social networking or bank account off of bigotry) and as for the social-anarchy...I don't know. It's a completely untested idea and as we know the history of untested ideas being tested without considering how human power structures work...has been nothing short of a horror fest. ShabiDOO 19:54, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Sure, a different system might have resulted in the US being less racist, but there is no possible system where the US would not be racist at all. You create a town in the sticks someplace with nothing but Swedes, Finns, Norwegians and Danes, and inside of year everyone else will be convinced that the Finns are a bunch of assholes. CoryUsar (talk) 20:10, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
In 1998, when I was a kid, I met a girl named Hayley at school and we became bestest friends. She would play outside with me a lot, and we would go on adventures throughout town. We would watch movies together late at night, too. One day a new cartoon came on that was about a little girl who pretended to be a vampire superhero, and pretended to fight monsters with her friends and her cat throughout her hometown. So that cartoon gave us an idea. We decided to form our own team of heroes. I was Gemma the Witch Girl, and she was Hayley the Impaler. For years we ran around town saving everyone from the monsters and villains. My arch-nemesis went by the name of Count Verum. According to the story, he was my ex-husband who I was arranged to marry a long time ago (I was pretending that as a witch, I had been living for over 500 years, but still appeared very young because I cast a spell on myself to do so), but who I ran away from with my kid, who at the time was really my cat Mr. Kitty. He wanted to remarry me and have custody of Mr. Kitty again, and I didn't want that because 1. Verum is evil and 2. He would make us do ALL kinds of chores and stuff around his castle that nobody would ever want to do! Hayley and I defeated his minions and him several times over, for years and years.
But one day, in like 2005 or something, Hayley had a talk with me, and said she can't be friends with me anymore. She had "grown out" of being a crimefighter, and started dating. And that made me cry! So my best friend in the whole world is not even the same person she used to be anymore! This is what "maturing" does to people. It ruins their brains!
So today, I want to play outside, and play with my toys, and do all the things that a kid would do, but I can't because people around me would see that and who knows what would happen. I would be outcasted more than I already am. And no, Trump is NOT making it easier to realize that goal, he is making it harder. Republicans all around me only want their traditional values upheld, and acting like a kid and playing outside in the apartment complex parking lot in front of everyone as a 27 year old is not included in those traditional values. Fuck Trump, I want to go out and fight evil monsters and have Verum challenge me again. I want a VCR in my room, and a whole toybox full of dolls and action figures. I want it to be easy to be a REAL child in 2020 as a physical adult. Gem Hunter (talk) 22:15, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
There's nothing inherently wrong with playing with kid's toys. Being an adult doesn't mean "watching Frasier instead of TMNT", "reading the Wall Street Journal instead of Batman Comics", or "playing chess instead of with action figures". However, your friend isn't a bad person for wanting to start dating, or to have different interests at age 12 than age 7. CoryUsar (talk) 22:42, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
tbh if ur not dumping half ur income into bionicle sets, you need to re-evaluate your priorities and that’s just Facts. A S E L A និយាយ 22:46, 11 October 2020 (UTC)
much of modern mainstream culture is essentially nerd culture, which is basically stuff normally considered kids stuff - superheroes, comic books and star wars. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:12, 12 October 2020 (UTC)

A few new cool templates[edit]

For the archive bot: {{subst:DNAU}}, {{subst:Bump}} and {{subst:Pin}}.

DNAU prevents the archive bot from archiving a section, Bump makes it so that archiving is delayed for 30 days (and inserts the signature of the bumper) and Pin is the same as DNAU but inserts a messagebox so that it's obvious that the section isn't getting archived. Make sure to substitute them, both Bump and Pin will yell at you if you don't (DNAU just won't work). Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 11:11, 9 October 2020 (UTC)

Thanks, I think. Wonder how much use they'll get, but never hurts to have options. CoryUsar (talk) 19:19, 13 October 2020 (UTC)

Winning[edit]

i have made and drunk two cups of tea this morning that i did not leave on the side to get cold.

Winning. AMassiveGay (talk) 12:30, 12 October 2020 (UTC)

You are my superhero! ShabiDOO 13:15, 12 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm from the south and hot tea is considered a weird thing for yankees and foreigners. It may taste better than iced tea filled with sugar, but culture works like that. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 02:49, 13 October 2020 (UTC)
a decent cuppa is prerequisite of anything that can be described as culture. a cup of tea vs iced tea is not a question of taste, it is civilisation versus savagery. cave paintings from early homo sapian have shown rudimentry stick figures getting a brew on, while amongst the fossilised remains of neanderthal settlements, packets of lipton ice have been found. what became of the neanderthal? one might ponder while dunking a digestive into a steaming mug of cha, as if it were really a mystery. AMassiveGay (talk) 16:25, 13 October 2020 (UTC)
Always need a cup of black coffee to start my morning. No milk or sugar. Oh and it is cheap store brand coffee, not name brand. I am not really a fan of tea. --Possible Goat (talk) 22:38, 13 October 2020 (UTC)

People vs. NRA[edit]

https://twitter.com/NewYorkStateAG/status/1291397976200548353 l https://ag.ny.gov/press-release/2020/attorney-general-james-files-lawsuit-dissolve-nra

Well, well. As of today (August 6th 2020) New York's Attorney General Letitia James just filed to dissolve the NRA, citing "18 causes of action that violated multiple laws including laws governing the NRA's charitable status, false reporting on annual filings on state and IRS levels, improper expense documentation, improper wage reporting, improper income tax withholding, failure to make excise tax reports and payments, payments in excess of reasonable compensation to disqualified persons" and more offenses... Bigwiggler (talk) 16:58, 6 August 2020 (UTC)Bigwiggler

I don't think this will accomplish much.-Hastur! (talk) 17:09, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
You wanna destroy an organization, investigating corruption and self dealing is a pretty good way to do it.RipCityLiberal (talk) 17:10, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
There will still be a robust gun lobby. Of course, if they did what they're accused of I'm fully in favor of prosecuting them, I just don't see this as a gamechanger-Hastur! (talk) 17:11, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
Agreed, Hastur, I just find the development interesting nonetheless.Bigwiggler (talk) 17:17, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
Funny as fuck, too. Couldn't happen to a nicer bunch. Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 17:21, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
Relatively speaking, the NRA is the sanest and most establishment of the gun lobby outfits. Remove it from the picture and something worse will fill in the void. This I guarantee. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱsos. 19:41, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
If the NRA is the sanest, then we don't need gun lobbies.RipCityLiberal (talk) 20:04, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
Depends on what you mean by "sane"... the Second Amendment Foundation for instance doesn't get *quite* as heavy into the right-wing politics, for instance. Also there are actually a handful of small gun advocacy groups that either cater to political (Liberal Gun Club), working class (Redneck Revolt / John Brown Gun Club), or minority (National African American Gun Association; Pink Pistols / Operation Blazing Sword) concerns from the left. I actually feel that there is room for a gun lobby from a *sporting, safety, and training* perspective (no identity politics!) to form, I don't know of one that exists, and this is what the NRA was before the 1970s. It's been clear for years that the NRA has been a political organization that uses bogeyman tales of conspiracy to sell weapons. If they really gave a shit about the sporting crowd, they'd fight tooth and nail anytime Republicans fuck with the national parks and forests. They don't. Soundwave106 (talk) 20:14, 6 August 2020 (UTC)
Socialist Rifle Association. HairlessCat (talk) 13:40, 7 August 2020 (UTC)
So, as crime and homocides rise in New York state, the state wants abolish the NRA. Brilliant move. nobsTo Bob Mueller:Every dog has his day. 17:57, 7 August 2020 (UTC)
Guns don't make people safer so...RipCityLiberal (talk) 18:36, 7 August 2020 (UTC)
What do you think the purpose of arming guards or police is? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 19:16, 7 August 2020 (UTC)
Guns will still be around without the NRA. However, Wayne LaPierre won't be able to fleece the rubes anymore in order to pay for his vacations to the Bahamas. (Unless the NRA reforms in Texas, because machismo sucker idiots are gonna be machismo sucker idiots.) Soundwave106 (talk) 19:41, 7 August 2020 (UTC)
Considering America has more guns than all industrialized nations, yet still leads in gun violence seems to refute your point BOE.RipCityLiberal (talk) 22:07, 7 August 2020 (UTC)
I'm honestly not sure what the debate is here. I'm doubt that anyone is arguing that removing one corrupt gun-supporting organisation will have a significant impact on American gun violence. I'm guessing that the idea behind the move is that corrupt organisations should be prosecuted. Or am I being overly negative or naive?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 15:40, 8 August 2020 (UTC)
There's no debate, it's just nobs making a non sequitur straight out of Fox News talking points. It is true that the NRA is part of "conservative identity politics" and if you are one of those that likes to yap about imagined liberal bogeymen, you are probably pissed at the liberal bogeyman for daring to stop Mr. LaPierre's Bahama vacations that you suckers pay for with your NRA fees "STEAL MAH GUNS!" or something. Soundwave106 (talk) 21:49, 8 August 2020 (UTC)
This is just partisans trying to take out the NRA in an election year. They still blame the NRA for Gore's loss in 2000; in 2016 the NRA and Maria ButinaWikipedia was part of a Russian plot, remember? nobsTo Bob Mueller:Every dog has his day. 18:03, 9 August 2020 (UTC)
No one gives a shit. The NRA has been exposed as a slush fund for LaPierre, and they definitely need a wholesale change of leadership because they aren't a gun rights group anymore.RipCityLiberal (talk) 16:18, 10 August 2020 (UTC)
They tried to take Roger Stone and Jerome Corsi out of the 2020 election cycle. Didn't work. Attacks on LaPierre and the NRA will only increase money and membership going into NRA, especially from Blacks fleeing white BLM terrorists burning down their communities and businesses. The history of racism is the history of gun control. Blacks aren't stupid like Biden and Democrats believe. nobsTo Bob Mueller:Every dog has his day. 21:04, 10 August 2020 (UTC)
Pretty sure someone that refers to Black people as "Blacks" knows little about the struggle for Black Lives. Also the NRA is super racist, just because they had one token, says nothing about their efforts to flood Chicago with guns.RipCityLiberal (talk) 23:05, 10 August 2020 (UTC)
If that's what you're going with, what about someone who refers to Black people as "black bodies"? And what definition of racism are you using such that trying to flood Chicago with guns is racist? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 17:39, 11 August 2020 (UTC)
Well BoN, using Black bodies makes clear the cost of violence perpetrated against Black people, and makes clear that society only values bodies rather than their lives, hopes, dreams or contributions to society. Guns are tools that make killing easier. Flooding urban areas with guns, maniacal focus on more guns creating "safety" serves a sinister purpose to refer to Black people as inherently violent, used conveniently as an argument that "black on black violence" is the real threat, and not a system that inherently oppresses, damages and kills. But certainly you know that and your comment was just to start shit so fuck off.RipCityLiberal (talk) 15:17, 12 August 2020 (UTC)
Hmmm, "If you don't vote for me, you're not black people", or maybe, "If you don't vote for me, you're not a black person". Nah, I'll stick with the Bidenism. nobsBlack Guns Matter 04:50, 13 August 2020 (UTC)
Yeah, you should probably sit this one out birther.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 16:06, 13 August 2020 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── You didn't actually answer my questions, so I'll ask them again. If using the term "Blacks" somehow implies that a person "knows little about the struggle for Black Lives" what does it imply when someone refers to Black people as "black bodies" as you did recently here? To quote, "NCAA is a racket that profits on black bodies." In fact, the NCAA profits from various things related to the activities of student athletes. It doesn't run a morgue. And the second question: What definition of racism are you using such that trying to flood Chicago with guns is racist? Those tangents you went off on don't actually supply a definition of the word under contention. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 11:51, 18 August 2020 (UTC)

Ok BoN, lets play then.
Did I say "dead Black bodies'? No, I said Black bodies, meaning fairly clearly that the NCAA benefits directly from the labor of Black athletes. The NCAA almost exclusively makes it's revenue from two sports; College Football and College Basketball, sports with feature majority black athletes.[2] Combined these revenues exceed 90%, and they literally pay for every other collegiate sport across all three divisions. Because the CBB tourney was cancelled, it reduced the amount of money the NCAA distributed by 63%.
Second, the NRA/GOP doesn't give a single shit about Black lives, because they allow guns in every part of society. Illinois actually has pretty strong gun laws, Indiana however does not, and most of the guns used in Chicago can be traced to straw purchases from Indiana. This allows the NRA/GOP to both 1. Blame Democratic Mayors/Governors for not controlling violence, even though they actively seek to undermine the actions that limit gun violence and 2. Continue to prop out the bullshit that Black on Black violence is worse then the systemic racism the NRA/GOP seek to protect.
There is no one that cares about Black lives, Black empowerment, or Black success that refers to Black Americans as "Blacks". Take it from me, a Black person living in America.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 23:37, 21 August 2020 (UTC)
“Did I say "dead Black bodies'?” You said “black bodies” lowercase.
“meaning fairly clearly that the NCAA benefits directly from the labor of Black athletes.” Incorrect. The NCAA gets its money indirectly from the activities of athletes. It gets money directly from things like ticket sales and television/marketing rights. But in any case, you chose to characterize the student athletes that draw the crowds as “bodies” rather than something like “people” or “students” that would imply agency on their part. And how is it pertinent that many of the students in the most profitable sports happen to be black?.
“There is no one that cares about Black lives, Black empowerment, or Black success that refers to Black Americans as "Blacks".” The point of the above line of discussion was to prompt an acknowledgement that the thing that implies an understanding of something or its lack is not the specific words used in a discussion about something, but how those words are used.
“Take it from me, a Black person living in America” You are not personally in charge of the English language. What do you think of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History’s use?
“Second” And you still haven’t answered the second question despite more tangents. So I’ll repeat it again. What definition of racism are you using such that trying to flood Chicago with guns is racist? To make it clearer, I’m looking for a definition here. But here’s an interesting tangent:
“Illinois actually has pretty strong gun laws, Indiana however does not” And Illinois has more violent crime, both gun and otherwise, than Indiana. As if violent crime correlates inversely with the ability of law-abiding citizens to defend themselves in random encounters. Criminals are capable of performing cost-benefit analyses and altering their behavior in response to risks. Like my above comment about armed guards and police. Now, what were you saying about the NRA? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 17:58, 26 August 2020 (UTC)
It seems like you are intentionally choosing not to understand so let me be very clear; The NCAA profits directly from Black athletes. Ticket sales and television rights are driven by the athletes. This is not a difficult concept, the athletes are Black, they are why people watch. Though we have created some illusion that the "student" part of "student-athlete" is the most important, the attempt to bring college sports back exposes this for the bullshit it is. I don't particularly give a fuck about your argument regarding proper description. Go to a group of Black people and refer to them as "the blacks", let me know how that works for you.
You're continued failure to understand basic concepts regarding gun policy and race are also pathetic. The implication above, and implied by racists like Rob, is that Black people are inherently violent, and as such letting them kill each other with guns is OK. Additionally, the NRA frequently uses dog-whistles, bordering on fog-horns, to describe "urban violence", a handy trope to describe POC, and that guns are the only way to protect their "invasion". The standards for enforcing gun laws is also blatantly racist, the NRA bitches and moans about gun restrictions, but when lawful Black gun owners are murdered, crickets. Phillando Castillo was a legal gun owner, murdered by the police. Breona Taylor was murdered by police breaking into her home, and her boyfriend lawfully defended them. Bye every metric, the NRA is an organization that openly supports white nationalism at the cost of Black safety.
Maybe poke around the site, and read some of the info regarding the NRA or Racialism.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 21:44, 26 August 2020 (UTC)
“Go to a group of Black people and refer to them as "the blacks", let me know how that works for you.” I see you’re moving the goalposts there. Perhaps you found the usage by the ASALH too obviously inoffensive. But let’s move a bit further. I have a quote for you to consider. “Good education, housing and jobs are imperatives for the Negroes”. Do you think the person who said that knows little about “the struggle for Black Lives”?
“the athletes are Black” Some are, while others are not. There are not racial criteria in selecting student athletes, and the NCAA profits from them regardless of their race. So why frame the issue specifically in terms of “black bodies”?
“The NCAA profits directly from Black athletes”
directly | diˈrektlē, dīˈrektlē |
adverb
2 with nothing or no one in between
Student athletes draw crowds and viewers. These crowds and viewers buy tickets and merchandise, and watch licensed programming. There is an intermediary layer of commercial organization between the activities of student athletes and the NCAA getting money. As such, the NCAA does not DIRECTLY profit from the activities of student athletes (of whatever race). In most paid employment situations, labor is not directly profitable to anyone but the laborer, as the employer usually makes profits from indirect actions like selling things to a third party. A contrast would be things like a street performer getting money directly from viewers. Definitions matter. Clarity of language enhances clarity of thought, and muddying definitions impairs both analysis and communication.
So with that in mind, I’ll repeat the question yet again. What definition of racism are you using such that trying to flood Chicago with guns is racist? You’ve gone on a number of tangents expressing disapproval of the NRA et al, but “racism” is not just a generic catchall term to describe things you don’t like. What is the specific meaning you intended to convey by using that word above? I can quote what a dictionary has to say about it if you want another example of what I’m looking for.
And I’ve been here since 2.1. I’ve poked around already. If you’re going to make an argument, you should be prepared to support it yourself. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 12:15, 31 August 2020 (UTC)
You are just going to refuse to take any answer huh. Firstly, you seem to lack understanding of context. Your quote is from 1964. Negroes was the correct vernacular then, but I'm quite sure Malcolm X would be able to update the way he refers to Black people. The NCAA profits from two sports, Football and Men's Basketball. If you bothered to read the link I produced above, you would see that these sports are 80% Black. They are the reason fans buy tickets and merchandise. They are the reason why companies pay to sponsor games. They are the reason companies pay billions for rights to show the games. Your entire premise that because that not every single player isn't Black means the profit isn't derived from their labor, but the overwhelming majority is Black. At the next level it's even more extreme. So get your fucking Argumentum ad dictionarium out of here.
Do you want examples of racism from the NRA? How about this? Or this? Maybe this? Not enough for you? What if you consider that when they talk about "violence in the inner city" it's a dog whistle? And that a great way to perpetuate this, is to challenge any and all form of gun regulations, to guarantee the profits of arms manufactures and still convince white people guns will protect them.
In summation, fuck off.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 23:30, 31 August 2020 (UTC)
“Firstly, you seem to lack understanding of context.” Nice of you to concede the point that the implications of word use depend on how they’re used rather than the words themselves. If you have nothing to add to that, the first point should be resolved.
“Your entire premise that because that not every single player isn't Black means the profit isn't derived from their labor” Not even close to what I’ve been saying. Maybe reread what I wrote if you want to follow that thread.
“Do you want examples of racism from the NRA?” I want a definition, as I mentioned before. You seem rather interested in various tangents, but I really am looking for a definition. For the fifth time now: What definition of racism are you using such that trying to flood Chicago with guns is racist? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 23:56, 4 September 2020 (UTC)
Can I ask, because I dunno what you're talking about, how you would define racism? I mean, in a city with disproportionate levels of security (i.e. housing, food, education), say, via capital, what... I guess separates or, worse, excuses your question from addressing reality? As it stands, I think you're asking for a non-sequitur response. Nobody can give that to you. That doesn't mean your premise is airtight.
Like, let's take this question "What definition of racisms are you using such that trying to flood Chicago with guns is racist?" Five times you've asked, are you gleaning a definition of racism or are you refusing any definition that isn't cut and dry? Does your definition have nuance? What are YOU fucking up, if you have to ask the same question five times? This is when you would offer your definition of racism, so that the conversation could be had. Ducking behind "you haven't explained racism to me" admits you aren't considering racism as a point, but not much else. Are you asking how an established power dynamic can be enforced or exacerbated by weapons? What are you actually asking? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 08:38, 6 September 2020 (UTC)
“Can I ask … how you would define racism?” I’ll quote my dictionary for you:
racism | ˈrāˌsizəm |
noun
prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior: a program to combat racism.
• the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races: theories of racism.
The gist is that racism involves using race as a categorical basis for action or judgement. Considering the negative connotation, I would also add that for common use it applies only to situations where race is NOT a legitimate basis for such things, though in a technical sense those would qualify.
“What are you actually asking?” I mentioned above that clarity of language is important. The inability to talk precisely about things impairs discussion and finding solutions, which makes it more difficult to actually solve problems. “Racist” has in some circles today become something of a generic catchall term to describe things the speaker doesn’t like, and this seems to be how RipCityLiberal used it above. I therefore issued a challenge to produce the definition behind that use. Something like the dictionary definition I gave would show that it clearly doesn’t apply, and that the use was improper, while admitting it to be a mere expression of disapproval would remove the invocation of moral condemnation associated with the concept. Attempting to stretch the dictionary definition to fit would be obviously ad hoc. RipCityLiberal seems to be attempting to steer the conversation along various tangents to avoid having to confront this, which is a legitimate rhetorical technique, if one which is simple to counter. The point of all this is an attempt to improve norms regarding the quality of discourse by calling attention to where it's gone wrong. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 19:14, 6 September 2020 (UTC)
Well, I guess that's fine, but then what do you want to call inbuilt and practiced structures of society that were originally predicated on race differentiation? Like, I'd call it an anachronism if it weren't for the fact it's still going on. If you aren't a racist, great. Nobody is asking you to be one. Do you think there are any causal relationships between your dictionary definition of racism and what people live with today? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:54, 7 September 2020 (UTC)
If you’re talking about racism by institutions, that used to be called institutional racism. But not all things “originally predicated on race differentiation” are racist, institutional or otherwise, so be sure to say precisely what you want to discuss. As for causal relationships, do you mean something like “racism” being defined in a certain way, “racism” being considered wrong, therefore those certain things defined as “racism” being targeted by policies while ignoring other things that should also be targeted? Or is your question about the relevance of the definition I gave to what people experience today? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 20:37, 7 September 2020 (UTC)
Well, the question was more along the lines of whether you personally wanted to separate the definitions of prejudicial racism and institutional racism. I don't really see how making the difference the point is functional except in defending institutions or political stances as less racist than they used to be. You can define the two ideas separately, but why would you actually have to? Like I said, nobody is asking anybody to be a racist. There are structures and systems that are inherently racist, and I suppose it's a good idea to remind people of what prejudicial racism is, exactly, but it's not a good idea to excuse taking part in those institutions without also critically thinking about how they are based in all of the definitions of racism. What is the functional benefit of stratifying racism as personal, political, institutional, or inevitable? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 02:47, 9 September 2020 (UTC)
“separate the definitions” “two ideas separately” “stratifying racism” You’re misinterpreting the situation. They aren’t separate. Institutional racism is a subset of racism, which is a more general category that includes a lot of different things. Institutional racism still involves using race as a categorical basis for action or judgement, it’s just that institutional racism specifically involves legal/organizational/cultural actions or judgements rather than those by other entities. The term was coined because racism by institutions was perceived to be both important and useful to consider as a conceptual category. For example, Jim Crow laws are a rather different sort of racism than a restaurant owner refusing to hire Irish people, and opposing them takes different techniques. New terms in general come about when someone finds a situation where a distinction or description would be useful, but the existing lexicon is not up to the task.
“There are structures and systems that are inherently racist” Like what? Please be specific. That “it's not a good idea to excuse taking part in those institutions without also critically thinking about how they are based in all of the definitions of racism” bit doesn’t mean much without specific details of what you’re talking about. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 03:47, 12 September 2020 (UTC)
This is a special situation, because I don't think I disagree with you on amy of that. So, let's say under that point, we entertain the idea of "the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun" Well, that rhetoric isn't up for debate, we know that originates from the NRA, so who dp they use as an example of a good guy (the suburban mom, the meek white grandpa, the perfectly law abiding policeman) if you aren't familiar with NRA magazines, unfortunately I am) and who is the bad guy (Obama, middle-eastern king gun-taker, but that's a little outdated, I've been taking shits in the same work bathroom since 2010). So, what do we have to do to call out racism, if it isn't EXACTLY defined? And who gets to call it out if they don't have your exact and specific definition? I mean, again, I agree, it's a bigger thing, and I'm not upset calling that bigger thing racism. I'm glad you're not stratifying as a necessity, but look at who is. They aren't exactly bastions of racial equality. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:54, 12 September 2020 (UTC)
“so who dp they use as an example of a good guy (the suburban mom, the meek white grandpa, the perfectly law abiding policeman)” You mean people representative of typical NRA members? Marketing to one’s customer base is ubiquitous.
“who is the bad guy” The saying is more about “bad guys” in general. Criminals mostly, but authoritarian politicians can qualify too. Criticism of Obama or his policies is not inherently racist, and if you want to make an argument that some criticism is racist, you’ll have to actually support it. Can you imagine any reasons why the NRA or its members might not like Obama other than his race?
“So, what do we have to do to call out racism, if it isn't EXACTLY defined?” Not every problem in the world is racism, or due to racism. If it’s not a use of race as a categorical basis for action or judgement, it’s not racism, and calling it racism obfuscates the issue. This makes the problem less likely to be fixed, not more, despite the attempt to tie the moral criticism of racism to it. So restrict attempts to call out racism to things that actually involve racism. If there is a problem that doesn't involve racism, address what is actually wrong.
“They aren't exactly bastions of racial equality.” Can you identify any policies, publications, or other works by the NRA that are actually racist? To my knowledge they accept everyone interested regardless of race. They don’t ask about or track their members’ races, and their political activities are not about racial issues. Do you think that trying to flood Chicago with guns is racist? If so, how did you reach that conclusion? What definition did you use to judge that it qualifies?
“we entertain the idea of "the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun"” As a practical matter, that’s certainly the most effective way to do it. Politicians, celebrities, rich people, and others who want protection from “bad guys” have armed guards. Banks, government headquarters, and secure corporate facilities have armed guards. Do you think that the politicians advocating for gun control want to give up their armed guards? Can you imagine why someone in Chicago might want to have one? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 07:13, 14 September 2020 (UTC)
It looks like your issue isn't with "people in Chicago," but a very specific cadre of people who coincidentally advocate for gun reform. I think you've taken a specfic point from a cadre of people who are very interested in keeping people armed and have been dogwhistled to bark at anyone who disagrees. Everyone has reasons, but you've engaged "the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun" as a "practical" ....Not solution, but, what? I'ma try and get there, because I'm not for gun reform for funsies. I mean, "good guy shoots bad guy" doesn't have much empirical evidence, bad guys with guns kill people. More often, it's the person(singula) with a gun that kills people(plural). I would do everything I can to remove the killer weapon as a factor before I started spouting off about good guys and bad guys, but that's just me. If the argument is something stupid like any criminal is going to get a gun anyway if you criminalize it, then I have this question. 04:18, 18 September 2020 (UTC)
Who do you think deserves to own a gun? And, of course you wouldn't know my history on it, I've said sportsmen and game hunters, sure, and I would still say a gun club membership would be a prerequisite for that ownership, and gun club storage would be the ONLY ubiquitous legal recording of guns. For brevity's sake, yes, this means police would not have guns. I think that's more "practical" than "If I have a gun I'll shoot the bad guy when I see him." But that doesn't even answer my own question. Who DESERVES to own a gun? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 04:18, 18 September 2020 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── “It looks like your issue isn't with "people in Chicago,"” I wasn’t mentioning Chicago or its people because I have an “issue”. It’s a callback to previous discussion about Chicago, particularly where the reality is opposed to RipCityLiberal’s initial statement. Ongoing discussion sometimes calls for specific examples, so I try to select ones that serve multiple purposes.

“a very specific cadre of people who coincidentally advocate for gun reform” Meaning who, SPECIFICALLY, and what do they advocate for? If you’re going to invoke dogwhistles of “specific” points, you should be specific. Being vague may be useful in political slogans, but it’s not good for analysis. The difference is important.

“Not solution, but, what?” An empirical fact. If a “bad guy with a gun” is stopped, it is almost always from the intervention of a “good guy with a gun”. If no such good guy intervenes, the bad guy is unlikely to be stopped. Which is why people and places that are intended to be secure employ armed guards, as I mentioned above, and why police and other agents that oppose violent criminals are armed. Defending yourself with a gun in a mugging or other criminal encounter is the option least likely to result in harm to you (even compared with trying to escape or with peaceful compliance) and most likely to prevent a robber from getting away with your stuff (thereby making a living through crime). Look up any report of criminal activity involving guns, and consider how the situation was resolved. Note whether someone with a gun opposed the criminal. The NRA likes that saying because it’s a truism, and disliking the NRA doesn’t make a truism false.

“More often, it's the person(singula) with a gun that kills people(plural).” Let’s consider the US, where there are statistics. About two thirds of gun fatalities are suicides (of which about half are with guns). Of homicides (of which about three quarters are with guns), nearly all involve a single victim. There are about 14,000 homicides involving guns in the US per year, compared with something on the order of a million defensive uses of a gun. Guns are not the only tool available for committing violence (knives are rather more popular among criminals, and have been since laws were invented), but they are by far the most effective tool for defending against criminals. You might read this for related information.

“something stupid like any criminal is going to get a gun anyway if you criminalize it” As I mentioned below, guns are a medieval technology. They can be built in a cave with a box of scraps. Pandora’s Box was opened nearly a millennium ago, and wishful thinking won’t get rid of the knowledge of making guns or the demand for them. Broadly banning guns merely gives a near-monopoly on modern guns to governments and organized crime (as in Mexico), since they can run mass production facilities and large scale logistics. But pretty much anyone can make a zipgun or shotgun from readily available parts. And many do in places where modern guns are banned.

“Who DESERVES to own a gun?” You’re framing this in a curious way. A person DESERVES something as a reward or punishment for specific actions. Something deserved is not a right, and the default case is that a random person is undeserving of the thing in question. Someone wanting the thing in question must make a case they they deserve it. This is in contrast to rights, where the default is that a random person has some sort of freedom or entitlement to the thing in question. Restrictions on rights must generally make the case that a particular person is specifically unworthy of them. The former has led to the gun situation in Mexico today, while the latter led to the gun situation in the US until 1934. US citizens used to be able to own and operate warships with naval artillery and order machine guns (actual machine guns, not “assault weapons”) through the mail, all with no government tracking or regulation. But to your question. I think that self defense is a right, and has the corollary of the right to own personal weapons generally. I also think that citizens have a duty to check government overreach by maintaining arms and means sufficient to prevent the operation of a tyrannical state, which has the corollary of the right to own military weapons generally. One consequence of an approximation of this sentiment is that the civilian population of the US outguns every military that has ever existed, combined, which (among other reasons) renders the US immune to military conquest. This is a rather important thing. Of course, it requires a high degree of social capital to work, but I prefer that mode of operation to the lords-and-serfs model. So if you insist on a direct answer to your question as worded, I would answer “citizens”.

“I think that's more "practical" than "If I have a gun I'll shoot the bad guy when I see him."” In the US, police fatally shoot about a thousand people per year, compared with about ten million arrests. In particular, this compares with about four hundred thousand arrests for aggravated assault, which is where police (or most anyone) is justified in using immediate deadly force. With about eight hundred thousand officers in the US, the majority will never shoot someone over their entire careers. Also for consideration, about 160 officers are killed on the job per year. With the vast majority of people shot by police being armed themselves, how do you think those encounters would play out if the police were not armed? It would be nice if there weren’t violent criminals, but that’s not the world we live in. Practicalities involve dealing with problems, not imagining what things would be like if they didn’t exist. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 10:22, 20 September 2020 (UTC)

OK, so I guess we're breaking this down since you've responded but have clearly read me wrong. First, a cadre of gun reformists was bait. I meant to put forward am absurd idea that there's a power structure behind gun reform, so, no, I can't be specific. The Clintons? The Obamas? Soros? Specify the cadre, I don't know, you don't buy that either and I'm really glad you don't, so I'm confused about your next points.
If no such good gunman intervenes. This is a stupid scenario. If you can agree that gun crime is a problem, gun justice isn't a solution.
Guns are medieval technology so criminals will get them, not really falling outside of the "stupid" part of the argument I claimed. Are you purporting that criminals will start crafting gun to commit crimes if purchasing a gun is off the table?
About two thirds of gun fatalities are suicides (of which about half are with guns) is... confusing, and your link doesn't go anywhere. I think you're saying half of suicides are guns, and two thirds of gun deaths are suicides. But are you still advocating for casual gun ownership on that point, like, huh?
The ownership of guns does not render the US immune to any invading army. That's absurd.
When was the last time you were held up at gunpoint by a criminal? I haven't been, but you know what I would say if somebody pointed a gun at me and told me to give them my money? "Yeah, sure, I guess we're doing what you want to do today." Nothing gambled, nothing lost. You know what I'm more scared of? Somebody who says "I don't like the cut of these peoples' jibs" and I'm in that crowd. I think the idea of a gun as a defense against a person with a gun is useless, and the better tactic to reduce situations in which a gun CAN BE FIRED is to HIGHLY regulate gun ownership. The rest is just fantasy. Serry, Constitution, you didn't get voting right on the first try either. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:56, 25 September 2020 (UTC)
“I meant to put forward am absurd idea that there's a power structure behind gun reform” It’s a popular political football. OF COURSE there are “power structures” (plural) involved. And “gun reform” just means an effort to change gun-related policy somehow, not specifically what those changes are to be. Different groups want different things. That’s why I asked for specifics. If you don’t want to talk about something, don’t bring it up.
“If no such good gunman intervenes. This is a stupid scenario.” It’s what happens most of the time in crimes of opportunity like muggings, or the gang-related violence that produces most of the gun homicide in the US. You could check what went on in Chicago last weekend if you want examples. Most such criminals get away, at least initially. If they are eventually tracked down and caught, it’s almost always by an armed law enforcement agent. Were you unaware of this?
“If you can agree that gun crime is a problem, gun justice isn't a solution.” Non sequitur. All crime is a problem, and there are various responses that are more or less suited to dealing with different sorts of crime. As it happens, opposing criminals armed with guns is most effectively done by “good guys” armed with guns themselves. For consideration, the same goes for criminals armed with knives. And you mention justice there. What do you think justice is? Your meaning seems to be something other than establishing incentives that encourage a well-functioning society.
“Are you purporting that criminals will start crafting gun to commit crimes if purchasing a gun is off the table?” That’s what many do right now in the real world in places where modern guns are unavailable. Did you see that video of guns being made in a jungle with hand tools? Even in the US, criminals make unregistered guns (never mind the existence of 3D printed guns now), and they’re much more popular elsewhere in the world. Palestine and the Philippines, for example. Instructions for making a variety of guns with basic tools and materials are easily available for free in the Internet. The Improvised Firearm Wikipedia article even links to a detailed instruction PDF.
“I think you're saying half of suicides are guns, and two thirds of gun deaths are suicides.” ”like, huh?”” Correct. Suicides generally involve only one death (contrary to your earlier statement), and there are other commonly-used methods of killing oneself. Preventing those deaths would require some form of psychological treatment, not gun restrictions. People without guns can and (just as) often do kill themselves. It just happens to be the case that suicides represent the considerable majority of gun fatalities in the US.
“your link doesn't go anywhere” The link goes to a summary page from which the paper can be viewed or downloaded. Here is a direct link for your convenience.
“The ownership of guns does not render the US immune to any invading army. That's absurd.” Note that I said military conquest. The distinction is important. Conquest is not just invasion, but subjugating a territory such that it can be put to productive use. The profits derived from conquest have long been a driver for wars. Becoming unconquerable has been a major goal of state militaries for millennia, and was prominently remarked upon by Sun Tzu. A state that cannot be conquered (invaded, subjugated, and put to productive use) must be dealt with peacefully because war would be ruinous.
Consider that the modern US military has more power projection capability than the rest of the world combined, and that the last fifty years have been a demonstration of how difficult it is to suppress a hostile population. Now consider that the civilian population of the US is not just more populous and vastly better-armed than Middle-Eastern militants or Vietcong, it runs a modern industrialized economy with all sorts of things that could be used to make trouble for an occupying force. If the entire US military vanished, and the entire rest of the world decided to conquer the United States, the armed civilian population of the US would outnumber and outgun all the armies of the world several times over, rendering such an endeavor futile.
And as a tangent, this relates to a point I mentioned earlier, about the “citizens” social model vs. the “lords-and-serfs” model. When states are in competition with each other, it is to their advantage to cultivate a powerful, prosperous population that can pay for a powerful military as well as defend the land against invaders themselves if needed. Some places have had obligatory military service and/or ownership of weapons with which to defend the realm. But when there is little risk of foreign destabilization, leaders tend to focus on solidifying their position against internal competition by suppressing the economic opportunities and access to arms of the general population. The Pax Americana has had the Western powers without serious competition for nearly thirty years now, and what do we see?
“Nothing gambled, nothing lost.” Except your money, ID, credit cards, keys, phone, watch, and anything else you have that may look valuable. And the mugger may decide that he doesn’t want to leave a witness to the felony, and kill you despite the cooperation. As I said, statistically speaking, defending yourself with a gun in such encounters (even against a criminal that is himself armed with a gun) is the option least likely to result in harm to you. Cooperating is about 7-8x more likely to result in harm to you than defending yourself with a gun is. And there are externalities to consider. Producing an environment in which mugging is reliably profitable incentivizes mugging as a career. Producing an environment where muggers face a significant risk of serious harm discourages mugging as a career. Consider again the different gun policies and crime rates in Indiana and Illinois.
“You know what I'm more scared of? Somebody who says "I don't like the cut of these peoples' jibs" and I'm in that crowd.” People can say what they want. Freedom of speech and such. If you mean something else, say what you mean.
“I think the idea of a gun as a defense against a person with a gun is useless” I’m curious. Do you have even a single piece of evidence to back this up? Or do you regard it as an article of faith?
“the better tactic to reduce situations in which a gun CAN BE FIRED is to HIGHLY regulate gun ownership” The ability to fire a gun is not a problem per se, and framing it that way is a sloppy proxy. The problem is criminal violence of all kinds. Gun use is not exclusively a problem, and criminal violence is not exclusively committed with guns. Many places like Mexico and Brazil with strict gun control have much higher violent crime rates than the US, and the US states with the strictest gun control also tend to be the ones with the most violent crime. It’s as if violent crime correlates inversely with the ability of law-abiding citizens to defend themselves in random encounters. Note that there are parts of the world where people don’t have a legal right to self defense. Consider the crime-related incentives that establishes.
“Serry, Constitution, you didn't get voting right on the first try either.” The Constitution has been amended several times regarding voting and related issues. The Second Amendment is still in place. Are you proposing that the Bill of Rights should be ignored when convenient? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 11:12, 30 September 2020 (UTC)
Do I have to do this point by point? I guess I started it, so let's clear up a few things, since this has gotten very broad and I don't want to waste time arguing things you aren't talking about. So here's what strikes me as as bleh.
Suicide attempts and suicides are, sadly, different, a lot of mental health problems go under the radar until, you know, the thing. I don't care about 3d printed guns, I don't think muggers are going to get me with 3d printed guns, and if they do steal my shit and they didn't kill me, I'm not dead, look out motherfuckers because I'll still be comin at ya live with that anti-gun rhetoric.
I read the paper you cited, I mean it doesn't really go anywhere. Yes, it's easier to protect yourself from crime with a gun, it's not great that you've got one paper from the 90s to prove that point. Not invalid, but not what I'm talking about. What I'm saying is, what if we make it so people who have guns are automatically criminals unless they meet very specific and rigorous standards? I know, perfect world problem on my side, but second amendment be damned, or struck down, or rewritten, or at least applied like it's not 1791 and the shit got ratified to stop me getting mugged with 3d printed guns, what if we stopped treating the second amendment like it was anything but reactionary?
So, with that much of my position cleared up, what are you saying? Because I'm reading your trying to say "it's easier to stop crime with guns" and I keep trying to say "without guns crime would be less fatal" and I think somewhere either I'm missing you or you're missing me. And I think it's that NRA thing, that "You can't take my 2nd amendment given guns" thing that's getting in the way. I don't want your guns to be taken away. I want you to meet an admittedly heavy burden of proof that you use your guns for real purposes because the consequences of anyone using a gun wrong are obvious. Every single lady should own a gun to prevent rape is not an appropriate conclusion to the paper you cited. Let me frame it this way AGAIN, who do you think DESERVES to own a gun? Gol Sarnitt (talk) 09:52, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
“Suicide attempts and suicides are, sadly, different” I brought up suicides because you said, “More often, it's the person(singula) with a gun that kills people(plural).” This is incorrect because most gun deaths in the US are suicides, and most gun homicides involve a single victim. You were uninformed or misinformed about the issue, yet you decided to weigh in on it anyway. And your framing of the issue is sloppy. You don’t want to talk about suicides here, but you wanted to talk about guns and shooting deaths. Well, suicides are about two thirds of the shooting deaths in the US, they just don’t fit the narrative you want. And regarding gun homicides, it’s the “homicide” part that makes it bad, not that the weapon used happened to be a gun. Disarming law-abiding citizens in an attempt to reduce gun homicides doesn’t help if overall homicides go up. Guns are tools, and they can be used for good and bad things. This should be obvious, yet you’ve continually failed to consider this concept, as if you take it as an article of faith that guns cannot under any circumstances be beneficial.
“I don't care about 3d printed guns” Yet they make a mockery of the notion of disarming the modern US. They are a fatal flaw (one of several) in your proposal above.
“it's not great that you've got one paper from the 90s to prove that point” There’s also the other paper from 2004, but at any rate, the pertinent question is whether their information is accurate and relevant. The answer would seem to be yes to both. I note that you have not provided any evidence whatsoever in this discussion.
“What I'm saying is, what if we make it so people who have guns are automatically criminals unless they meet very specific and rigorous standards?” You’d have to toss out a lot more of the Constitution than just the Second Amendment. You seriously seem to be uninformed on the relevant issues to the degree that your proposals are completely unrealistic. I have a quote for you to consider: “Under no pretext should arms and ammunition be surrendered; any attempt to disarm the workers must be frustrated, by force if necessary.” Government disarmament of the public is a hard line in the US. It’s what kicked off the Revolutionary War. The Second Amendment is there for actual reasons.
“"without guns crime would be less fatal"” And if magical unicorns patrolled the streets, crime would be less fatal too. As I said before, Pandora’s Box has been opened. Getting rid of guns is not viable, period. So policies that rely on doing that are not viable, period. Meaning that the only viable policies deal with the presence of guns in the real world. Is your intention to discuss issues about the real world or to write a utopian fiction?
“Let me frame it this way AGAIN, who do you think DESERVES to own a gun?” As I specifically answered above, citizens. A loaded answer for a loaded question. “Citizen” derives from a Latin root referring to cities and the cultural institutions that allow civilization. A citizen has a number of rights and duties pertaining to the maintenance of civilization, and keeping and bearing arms is one of them. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 11:58, 9 October 2020 (UTC)
Perhaps approaching this from another angle will help. Are you aware that your proposal is that the Trump administration should disarm the American public, then maintain an effective monopoly on guns for itself? Is that really what you want to happen? 192․168․1․42 (talk) 10:12, 14 October 2020 (UTC)

The illusion of life[edit]

I found this to be a rather interesting take on what life is, from the point of physics though.

https://www.quora.com/Are-we-actually-alive-real Machina (talk) 23:37, 3 October 2020 (UTC)

Did anybody see this heading and not think it had been added by Machina? Spud (talk) 00:52, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Better question. Does it matter whether we're real or not? ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 01:00, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Yes I read the quora all about a deeply philosophical topic which almost exclusively listed classical 20th century philosophical responses to the question. It's all stupid and useless to everyone. These questions should not be asked or answered, it's a waste of time. ShabiDOO 01:10, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
I'm deeply suspicious of the impulse not to ask a question or to avoid a given set of knowledge because they're "wastes of time." We can all name something we consider meaningless or irrelevant, we could probably even reach a consensus on much of it, but people who utter variants of the phrase "it's not worth knowing" seem to do so reflexively and often. Artificius (talk) 11:23, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Yeah you might not have picked up on my sarcasm Artificius. I'm lampooning this guy who has spent the last two weeks insisting all 2500 years of philosophy have been a useless waste of time while he at the same time posts his 25th thread on the saloon on a classical blatantly philosophical topic he's obsessed with and cannot stop asking. ShabiDOO 16:40, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Yup, sailed right over my head. Artificius (talk) 00:04, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Well it has more to do with the physics definition of structures that create emergent phenomenon, like consciousness. Then saying that life is an illusion because at the physical it's just structures and patterns interacting with each other and the only thing that separates us from a rock is the complexity of our patterns. Though it's a little weird to see a physics take on biology. Still not sure if I fully grasp it.Machina (talk) 02:38, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

FWIW, I know a dude studying neurophysics, and he says that when it gets to this level all we really have to go on right now is philosophical arguments. A S E L A कुरा 03:43, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
No it doesn't Machina, physics plays little role in the argument, these are really 95% in the realm of ontology/espistomology/metaphysics. Neuroscience certainly plays a big role as those who are researching this problem have used experiments from Neuroscience (some experiments are actually run by joint philosophy-science ventures for example through Raymond Tallis and Daniel Dennet to name a few) who are answering questions about free will, consciousness and our limits of the understanding of the world around us, but that is a source of evidence, not where the discussions are situated. Nearly that entire threat is philosophical. You should stay away. It's all useless and valuable to nobody. The fact that you are even concerned about these questions shows you are engaging in useless question asking and wasting your time. Find something else to do Machina. ShabiDOO 05:22, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Daniel Dennett is a doofus. HairlessCat (talk) 15:34, 4 October 2020 (UTC)
Yeah, like Dawkins he has said some unfortunate things outside of his field of study. ShabiDOO 16:40, 4 October 2020 (UTC)

Ignore Shabi, they're still bitter. Anywho, it doesn't seem like the realm of philosophy considering that it deals with what we define as alive and dead and according to the argument in the Quora link these are illusions because at the base level there are just patterns and complexity interacting with each other. One forms us and the emergent phenomenon of consciousness and what we call "alive" while others lead to "death". Not sure how right that is or if that interpretation is true but it's interesting to see it from a physics point of view. But I think you're right, at a certain level things get too abstract to make any definite claims about it. It's just weird how at those levels what applies there doesn't work at our level, which is where life and death are. Ugh, my head hurts.Machina (talk) 03:33, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

It's really adorable Machina, you're young and can't settle on what you believe and flip flop between absolute rejection of the value of something to an inability to stop considering what it means. Enjoy your journey. ShabiDOO 03:43, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
@Machina Again, a better question ( and one I find more interesting) is whether this distinction matters or not. @Shabidoo metaphysics is dead and good riddance to a form of overly reductionist thinking. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:14, 5 October 2020 (UTC)
Wow a second person who finds a nuanced question to a philosophical problem "interesting" and then dismisses it's utility. It's not surprising as I see it from time to time, it's just surprising that such a ridiculous hypocrisy would come from someone I intellectually respected up until now GC. It's dead? I never even knew it was "alive" before. Reductionist? First time I ever head that about metaphysics. Just about everyone complains it is the opposite (which can actually be a fair criticism as a lot of it was) but reductionist? WTF? ShabiDOO 16:20, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Metaphysics definitely isn't dead, and I'm not sure what could kill it short of a sudden outbreak of omniscience. Minor quibble re. reductionism: pretty much any metaphysical question involves making a choice between asserting the existence of some thing / property in its own right, or offering variously reductive accounts that adequately explain the thing / property in terms of other, more fundamental things / properties. Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 19:53, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

Indeed. I mean, its true a LOT of metaphysics has been dragged and dropped into the "historical bin" (especially since a lot of it came before the enlightenment and modern thought and science) that hardly means metaphysics is dead. That's such an extreme statement GC! And sorry but how did this whole discussion get lumped into one single branch of philosophy anyways GC? Talk about being reductionist, ironically, in a different way, you're reducing all these questions to only metaphysics and leaving out epistomology and ontology (to name just two?) Are those also dead? ShabiDOO 20:46, 5 October 2020 (UTC)

Ontology, another useless branch of philosophy along with metaphysics.Machina (talk) 00:41, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Like totally Machina isn't it stupid just like everything else? I mean stuff is so dumb and people are so stupid and philosophy is horrible and doing stuff sucks and questions are pointless and talking about things is awful and what's the point of stuff or like even wanting to like stuff cause everything is so dumb...right and even if we tried to do stuff it would all just end up being stupid so why bother? Shouldn't you be posting a new philosophical thread Machina? ShabiDOO 00:47, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Anyway, this is getting off topic from the main point of the thread which is about seeing life from an alleged physics point of view. Because at the base level it seems to just be patterns and the emergent phenomenon from them.Machina (talk) 00:59, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Would it cause you any particular distress if I told you no self-respecting physicist would ever claim the current Standard Model represents a complete, or even particularly accurate, account of the fundamental nature of the universe? It does a lot of things well, and that's good enough for now, but don't kid yourself that the big questions disappear if you just yell "Physics!" Accept they'll probably remain unanswered in your lifetime, reconcile yourself with uncertainty, and get on with living your fucking life. Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 02:42, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
@Shabidoo I was referring to things like Thales' "everything is water". Now, if Epistemology and Ontology are properly categorized under metaphysics, I stand corrected, and admit to being wrong. I still don't think it matters whether we really exist or not. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 03:25, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
PS: Please don't patronize me with the same snide tone you use for Machina, it's actually kind of insulting. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 03:31, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Well GC with your tone you basically came across JUST like Machina with his equally flippant "philosophy is dead and it's all stupid" which to be honest is as insulting as it gets when one basically infers that what you studied and put a great deal of your time into is all useless and a waste of time (cause you read a book that half-says so and you seem to agree even though you cannot respond with straight forward answers to simple questions). I apologize too, you were criticizing classical metaphysics and only this and misunderstood. Sorry. Yes, classical metaphysics covering things like "the part is the whole" and Plato's categories is mostly (though not entirely) dead. Metaphysics lives on, most modern metaphysics describing the world quite similar to a rationalist scientific point of view only rightly pointing out unresolved issues. Machina's question covers multiple fields of philosophy from metaphysics to epistemology and ontology (think the overarching theory of how things are and work, how we can know things and how we exist). So when you take a modern rationalist scientific approach to answering questions like are we real that IS a metaphysical approach (and like the approach you take meaning it certainly is not dead). It's one thing to ask "does it even matter", which I agree I don't think it really does matter if reality is as we think it is (especially since we cannot confirm it) but its not the same as saying this question is completely irrelevant in other contexts. ShabiDOO 04:16, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Shabidoo, GC is right. Metaphysics absolutely should yield almost all its claimed intellectual territory to science. For example, there's very little value in conjecturing about implications of the Copenhagen vs many world interpretations of quantum mechanics in your head if you're not going to scientifically test and experimentally distinguish those ideas. It's conjecture at best, pseudoscience with unfair academic credence at worst. I searched for "Open questions in metaphysics" and here's the first .edu result: Go down this list and try to find something that's not just puffery and asks something philosophically useful. Some of it raises testable material hypotheses that they don't bother to test, like the notion of a soul as a material thing. Trash.
I don't think metaphysics has no useful questions to ask but I do think it's become a place cowards who are afraid to be wrong hide. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 04:36, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Another ridiculous overgeneralization Ikanreed. You took the intro list of questions for an undergraduate course as though that's the kind of central questions academics write on. I could read the sylabus about questions that will be explored from any class and find infantile seeming questions. And some of those questions are puffy because they are likely being asked so they can be refuted not because they are being taken seriously (for example the soul). Many of those questions are entirely reasonable ones for anybody to ask. And yes, much of metaphysics has been handed over to science (I personally don't have a single philosopher friend who dedicates themselves to the topic) but these questions need to be addressed for anyone studying the art of critical thinking. Zheesh. Refuting bad ideas is a skill someone with a critical mind has to develop. If you want good metaphysics just look up Paul Boghossian for example (to name just one). "Could there be a person who was not in time?" is a question I doubt any student seriously believes but are using these examples as practice material to refute bad claims. Some metaphysics is useful. Calling it generally a place where fearful minds go to hide is a ridiculous ignorant overgeneralization. I'm surprised with you Ikanreed. ShabiDOO 04:55, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
@Shabidoo "Well GC with your tone you basically came across JUST like Machina with his equally flippant "philosophy is dead and it's all stupid" which to be honest is as insulting as it gets when one basically infers that what you studied and put a great deal of your time into is all useless and a waste of time (cause you read a book that half-says so and you seem to agree even though you cannot respond with straight forward answers to simple questions)." Err... What the fuck? I actually like philosophy and view it as important in developing things like ethics, critical thinking, and an understanding of social structures. For fuck's sake, I'm a leftwing anti-capitalist! I kind of have to base parts of my views in philosophical fields. I just had a mistaken impression of metaphysics, which I corrected and admitted to when called on and disproven. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 13:43, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Also, when someone asks "is life an illusion?" and I reply "does it matter? I don't think it does" I'm referring to the notion that there is no difference between a mind that is "real" and a mind that only thinks that it is "real", in that in either case there's no discernible difference. Another example that comes to mind is that if we are indeed within a simulation so sophisticated as to be indistinguishable from reality, then that simulation is in fact functionally the same thing as reality from our perspective. I don't remember who made that argument though. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:16, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Yeah GC and I had a mistaken impression of what your were saying and took it back and apologized which is why I explained my reaction and then explained why I was wrong about yours. I agree with you the question "am I real" doesn't matter in a practical sense and only as just one argument to question our limits of certainty and nothing more. ShabiDOO 16:21, 6 October 2020 (UTC)
Alright, I'm open to the possibility of being wrong. What metaphysical text of the last half century has seriously contributed to our ability to understand anything? What have I overlooked? I don't get good feelings reading even credible journals of the field ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:49, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Brief list to name some of my favorites of the 20th and 21st century

  • Daniel Dennet's "Freedom Evolves"
  • Karl Popper's "Objective Knowledge"
  • Peter Boghosians "Fear of knowledge"
  • Wilfrid Sellars "The metaphysics of epistomology"
  • Bertrand Russels "Essays in skepticism" and "Logic and Knowledge"

Yes there certainly is garbage in some journals though to be honest a lot of it is pointing out problems in rationalist models. I agree most of it has been handed over to science, some of it is junk but it is an exaggeration to say it is a useless field where weak minds hide themselves. That's extreme. Also a lot of questions and problems cover multiple fields overlapping metaphysics which makes it difficult to broadly dismiss metaphysics when its simply one part of a larger set of tools. ShabiDOO 19:39, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

I really don't get your point mechina. Whatever do you mean by "the illusion of life?" Our senses detect reality much like a thermometer detects changes in temperature, or a giger counter may be calibrated to detect beta particles and gamma radiation, which you ought to know are really there because, in sufficient quantities, they can kill you. The point is, one can consider the human senses to be instruments, designed by evolution, for the detection of changes in the common properties of local reality. Consciousness, to say as little as possible without being idealist, is a process mediating individual understanding of said local reality. Understanding is a continuous process, like a light bulb turned on, and during which any number of descriptive relationships are distinguished, depending upon the given observer. To agree with you, everything is a result of properties of emergent phenomena. That is what some folks call a deepity. Since emergent phenomena are detectable by our senses, they can hardly be called illusions, anymore than the clicks from my giger counter are illusions. The word "illusion" is a label for a kind of misunderstanding. As mentioned above GC is also right. It doesn't matter whether existence is real because some of us will misunderstand what it means to be real. Ariel31459 (talk) 05:31, 6 October 2020 (UTC)

Sorry I was having fun watching Shabi twist themselves in knots trying to avoid the inevitable conclusion of philosophy which is nihilism, and it has been proven to be so, or to try and rationalize metaphysics as useful. But I guess my illusion I mean something not being as it appears to be. I mean we do have a definition of life and what it means to be alive but there are some creatures that seem to defy that explanation, like viruses. There's also that aspect of physics where everything is just patterns of varying complexity. I honestly don't know what that Quora poster meant by being self aware as an illusion though. There is also the question of "levels" like the quantum and our world and which one constitutes reality "as it truly is". One "paper" I read said that quantum physics proves that nothing exists, but all the sources were from the same woo website and when I asked physicists they all said no. So I doubt that. Also I get a headache whenever the word "real" is thrown about. Dealing with solipsism the idea of real and existing is a maze to put it lightly. I mean you get the question "what is real"? And to be honest I don't have a good answer. I mean where exactly does one draw the line between reality and illusion and how do you tell? If a lie goes on without being uncovered does it become the truth? Then there's the question of how do you know this "is it"? A lot of Eastern religions talk of the ground of being or direct experience and they sound sure of themselves. But In my mind I always wonder if there is another layer you can't see or know. There's also the question of what is the point of digging deeper when you can't know for sure if there is nothing else. I mean it's already troubling that basing knowledge on experience means you have to deal with the problem of solipsism. Most of us take external reality for granted but when pressed about it all we have is our own experience to fall back on, which doesn't really prove anything. I'll be honest I was terrified that I am alone in all this and talking to people was like playing with shadows on the cave wall. It just seems to me that the more I dig the less I like because it really reveals how baseless much of my knowledge turned out to be. That's kind of what scared me about philosophy. It didn't give answers but it took a lot of things away that I would have been better off with.Machina (talk) 03:46, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

Bluntness time, you've either got an absolutely full of shit idea of what the word "proven" means, or you're bullshitting us. Either way, you're wrong and willfully so. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 04:44, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

I'm not wrong. Because according to the rules of philosophy Solipsism would be the default position when it comes to reality: https://www.shroomery.org/forums/showflat.php/Number/4846074/fpart/2/vc/1#4846074 Machina (talk) 03:06, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

I've got a few answers:
A. The rules that don't actually exist because you learned them from a posteriori observation and you believe in solipsism?
B. Who set these rules of philosophy? Some kind of philosopher king?
C. Actually write the proof, don't blow wind up my ass and just tell me something's true, deduce it with formal logic from a priori first principles, dammit.
I personally prefer A as an answer, but C is the most likely one to lead you to cut this special pleading garbage. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 03:22, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Right here: https://www.shroomery.org/forums/showflat.php/Number/14592600#14592600 Showing that it is the default position.Machina (talk) 03:40, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Hmm... Magic mushroom forum I've never heard of before or the Standford Encyclopedia of Philsophy? The choice in sources is ever so difficult... ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 03:51, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
That forum post is not a deduction. And it's really not formal logic. Give me a syllogism or fuck off! You know, X means Y and Y means Z therefor X means Z. Don't tell me you throw the word "proof" around to mean "thing I read online some place" like a fucking boomer. Are you a boomer, machina? Are you? ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 05:23, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
No offence machina, and I’m not a philosopher, but shroomery??????? That’s legit a worse philosophical source than DMT Nexus and I do not say that lightly. A S E L A និយាយ 19:49, 8 October 2020 (UTC)
Like, we’re not just talking the old “DMT aliens are actually Real” shit, but we’re also talking a place that’s like 90% 14 year old stoners and/or trolls. Please reconsider getting your philosophy from places like this. A S E L A និយាយ 19:56, 8 October 2020 (UTC)

You guys are dismissing it simply because of the title instead of reading what they are putting forth. Isn't that a logical fallacy in and of itself? Also that user does use formal logic, you just don't like where it leads because solipsism is the end result of reason and Occam's Razor. "My consciousness definitively exists I have no definitive evidence of other consciousness

therefor my consciousness is the only one that definitively exists." They still use the same sources of philosophy other places do, but the fact the you'd rather handwave it like that and commit the ad homeniem fallacy shows me you're scared because it just shows how flawed philosophy is because of where the argument leads. Because you don't want to accept that positing anything other than solipsism is itself a leap of faith and therefor not philosophy or logical.Machina (talk) 01:07, 9 October 2020 (UTC)

Look I’m not saying whether you’re right or not bc I’ve only studied extremely basic philosophy so far. However, I will say that, right or wrong, people are gonna be less likely to trust an argument that comes from somewhere like fuckin Shroomery. It’s just good practice to try to back up your arguments with like, better sources (eg actual philosophers, academic articles, etc). Even if you could argue “they’re still right so who cares” , the problem is that people tend to be more critical when your source is clearly unreliable (and especially when that source has the whole “teenage stoner/troll reputation”). Sure, it might be “illogical”, but you gotta think about rhetorical features too — how to convince people more effectively. A S E L A និយាយ 09:47, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

Isn't the point to engage the argument and not where it comes from. Otherwise then you're not that different from the people who claim others are close-minded or lack critical thinking. I post the link because copying their argument would take a lot of space up and at this point in the topic there is no need for that. You don't know what the source is like or it's reputation, that's just more ad homeniem attacks. You aren't really making a good case for philosophy or critical thinking if this is just going to devolve into the same fallacies you accuse others off. Also most academic links require either an account or payment so that generally doesn't work. When it comes to philosophy the source doesn't matter, it's the argument. I highly doubt the first philosophers cared about sourcing, they addressed the arguments at hand. Again, not doing the profession any credit with your dismissal or refusal to hear the argument. So either address the argument in the link or don't claim to hold such principles in esteem, sourcing matters when it comes to scientific claims it doesn't matter in philosophy. Also to add insult to philosophy are the ridiculous thought experiments it posits, which are only for discussion but don't solve anything or have any real impact. I mean what's the point of the Boltzmann Brain experiment anyway if there is no solution?Machina (talk) 21:25, 10 October 2020 (UTC)

The most frustrating thing of discussing anything with you Machina is that you don't pay attention to the texts people type out here. You glace, you skim, you hop all over a point and forget about the rest. I've pointed this out before. I suggested several options, not just finding a better source. That includes putting things in your own words. You could have easily summed up the info from your bad source in your own words and put it in a far more reasonable argument and then mentioned the sources that are listed in that website. I've suggested you do this several times (putting things in your own words). It is a skill you should learn, because you have a habit of mis-characterising other people's (or sources) statements and just providing a link to it and then go "job done...it's proven". It isn't proven if you misuse a source (claim something the source doesn't claim or prove or link a bad source). Please learn to read the full texts people type and pay attention to all of it (and try to address all of it). It is a recurring problem. In any case Machina, you are a university student, you have access to a library and all sorts of online journals, you should have ZERO problem finding a better source. If you expect people to take your arguments seriously, don't cite trashy websites. Find a better source or put the content from your trashy website into your own words here. And claiming that a "source doesn't matter" makes me doubt you are even a university student at all. Seriously? ShabiDOO 07:36, 11 October 2020 (UTC)

The source depends on the subject matter, something you learn in college. In the case of the harder sciences it does matter where you get it from, even sociology. But in the case of philosophy it doesn't really matter since it's all just arguments. You can cite rules or fallacies but in the end it comes down to the argument being made. As I had posted about someone arguing solipsism being the end point of reason and Occam's Razor, that it's the standard assumption. You keep attacking where it came from instead of the argument which is irrelevant. The argument is from a user, so target the user. The website is not relevant to the argument, hence why I question your commitment to this if you are just going to commit the same fallacies as anyone else instead of attacking the argument. It's not me to put it in my own words but to present it as they have and show you what they said. It sounds like you don't know how this works, and I know next to nothing about philosophy but I understand the "rules" of argument better than you do. So either address the point being made in the link or say nothing, because attacking the source doesn't invalidate the argument, it's just lazy. Dismissing it just because it's not from Stanford is the height of hypocrisy, I doubt the first philosophers committed such idiocy. You and everyone else on here sure aren't behaving as proper philosophers like on other forums. That being said the study of philosophy and I don't mix. Trying to read through any of the greats of the past leaves my mind boggled by what they were trying to say. I can understand the words in an individual sense but strung together they mean nothing to me. It's like reading the classics all over again. It's only when they "boil it down" like in the forum there where I can get it. But most of the other stuff I "read" and link uses complex language that I don't understand and I can't really follow how they think X or Y. I used to love philosophy because I thought it was about knowing stuff, but it's not from what I gather. I got a lot of maybes, everything seemed more like an opinion rather than a fact, and at the core of it I saw that it was pretty much based on faith with axioms (that was disappointing). Critical thinking seemed to be based on the same "airy" ground that anything else was, though at least better than religion which just asserts God and that's it. At least with an external reality you sort of need that for any philosophy. But to learn that a lot of things we take for granted are either leaps of faith or luxuries. Honesty is a luxury in a society where much of survival is less costly than the wild, same with being generous. Even critical thinking itself becomes a luxury until it ends up swallowing itself, like with solipsism (which some argue is the endpoint of Occam's Razor or is the base level assumption). I mean, how much can you doubt before you have nothing left and how can you know what to and to not doubt? I began to think that the questioning of philosophy was unless and led to a lot of dead ends and endless arguments because there is no right answer or wrong one. I'm starting to think that truth isn't something to strive for because it can be debated endlessly and ultimately it has no basis (according to the Munchausen Trilemma), I'm thinking it's better to believe what is useful or helpful. What is useful seems to be the best definition of what is "real" (another sticky word). I don't decry my grandma or others for believing in God if it gives them comfort and helps them. I used to think that truth was a noble thing to pursue and comfort was for fools, but after exposure to philosophy I'm starting to think the reverse is true. I mean have any of the big questions ever been answered with philosophy? What exactly is the point of questions with no answers when most of them are not relevant to my life? Just sounds to me like philosophy does more harm than good and sometimes ends up eating itself. Question this but not that, you have to start with axioms (things you just accept) otherwise you'll get nowhere, and what of the problem of solipsism. I don't think your words about singing it's praises are grounded in strong evidence. I'd likely have been happier and less mentally unstable with philosophy. Actually this all started because of philosophy and what it "taught" so I guess a sarcastic "thanks" fits in here.Machina (talk) 23:25, 13 October 2020 (UTC)

Book report on those assigned reading[edit]

Summary level: I'm not thrilled. I want to stress that my position isn't that metaphysics is optional or should be discarded. Just that it's used to cover a kind of philosophical ultracrepidarianism way too often. And a lot of the actual value that comes from things nominally called "metaphysics" makes far more sense under another philosophical umbrella, like epistimology, and including scientific knowledge doesn't really make something metaphysical.

  • Dennet was my starting point, and while I had some hope when reading chapter 1 he'd get around to making a sound point, and I just keep waiting chapter after chapter. He circuitously dances around the notion that natural sciences have some deeper value that can only be extracted by philosophy, but never makes a clear example that demonstrates it. Aside: His defense of steven pinker as "unfairly maligned" does not look good in retrospect. Chapter 2 is a low point, where he does exactly the sort of thing that fills me with such disgust for metaphysicians. He makes up a novel and false "simplified" physics to frame his discussions about determinism based on voxels, and with only a handwave towards whether the differences he proposes have any impact on his conclusions. His rapid approach in the next chapter to "possible worlds" by way of complexity without addressing the scientific validity of his proposed "possible" feels me with disdain. "Could x actually happen according to the laws of physics? Who cares! Things are compicated, surely there's an arrangement of matter that makes it possible". Not. A. Fan. I think in the end we get an argument from personal ignorance. If he had scientific evidence to back his position, I'd be a lot friendlier to it, than rambling pages of anecdotes and conjecture.
  • Russell's work on formal logic is plainly epistimological in nature. It's literally a set of methods for describing and assessing knowledge.
  • Sellars. He comes close to making a direct argument for the universal application of metaphysics to science
But I recommend that you think very seriously about this framework. Get a good grip on the rationalist approach if you do feel you have insight into the fact that everything must have an explanation. Einstein, e.g., always looked at quantum mechanics as scandalous; he thought that there could not occur events which have no cause but just a statistical probability that they will occur. As he put it, "God doesn't throw dice." There are many philosophers and scientists who, when contemplating the idea that there are events which occur without being necessitated by some antecedent situation, feel that there is something weird about that. They may not hold an explicit rationalistic philosophy of this kind, but they are close by. Einstein did not have a theory of knowledge here, but he had the insight that every­thing must have an explanation. He probably would have been offended by this tidy talk about levels of attributes, relations of entailment between kinds of events and so on, but all we are using here is nice, technical terminology to formulate something which everybody recognizes as some­thing that is plausible.
  • This is not his only thesis or anything accross the work, but it comes closest to addressing my specific concern, so I've gotta talk about it. "Einstein did not have a theory of knowledge here". Except that's a ludicrous statement. He had, at that point, spent years structuring his own studies in the language of knowledge he was quite familiar with, mathematical formulae. The end of that very sentence in hist letters expounds cleanly, "and I [believe] in complete law and order in a world which objectively exists, and which I, [...], am trying to capture". There's absolutely a theory of knowledge to that perspective, and because it's not written the (unnecessarily in my mind) abstracted language of Sellars' metaphysics doesn't make it less a way to frame knowledge with a coherent theory. Maybe I'm hounding on this one point too hard, but I don't really know what to say or feel about "Mild rationalism" or his idea of a "Datum". It makes me shrug my shoulders and go "I guess?" None of it feels like it really helps me frame the mechanics of the observable world. It's just kinda... there?

I'm tired and ranted too much and didn't read the others yet. It hasn't shifted my opinion much. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 04:43, 7 October 2020 (UTC)

Ad hominem is attacking a claim because of a quality the person who stated it has, not because they present their information in such a way that it makes a bad quality source (shroomery is a ridiculous source to quote Machina). Using reasonable sources is pretty much the first lesson you learn in any academic discipline (far more important in the humanities and super essential in philosophy). Linking to a "shroomery" page will lead to people not taking you seriously. If it isn't an academic sources (or one of academic quality) or at the very least written as though it is of academic quality (a forum page like shroomery ticks off none of these) then either go directly to the primary source and/or rewrite it all in your own words. Asking for a better source is not a "handwave" but a perfectly reasonable thing to do. Learn to paraphrase other people's ideas in your own words (without actually changing or modifying their ideas unless you give a disclaimer) and find better sources. Since solipsism is clearly causing you mental anguish, consider not reading or discussing this topic anymore or better yet abandon this field that you clearly find useless and damaging. ShabiDOO 12:56, 10 October 2020 (UTC)
Machina says: "but I understand the "rules" of argument"
You clearly don't Machina. If you did then you wouldn't be presenting non-proof as proof, avoiding answering straight forward questions in straight forward ways and then claim that you did, ignore statements and not respond to them, hypergeneralise, complain about having to use good sources, complain you don't have access to sources when you do, casually dismiss things you don't like and talk about things you know little of as though you are experienced. But I certainly like your overconfidence. ShabiDOO 10:21, 14 October 2020 (UTC)