RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive385

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Are vaccine side-effects actually a good thing?[edit]

Being in a vulnerable cohort, I had the first shot of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine 2 days ago, and have had pretty much the expected gamut of side-effects - mild fever, chills, aches, hyperalgesia, fatigue, etc. My partner and his friends are all doctors and tell me that the fact I'm experiencing these side-effects is actually a good thing rather than an unfortunate nuisance, because it means that my body is generating an appropriate immune response to the RNA proteins and therefore is "learning properly" for the real SARS-CoV-2 in the wild. But none of them had a response, so do I take that to mean it's being more effective for me than them? I consider myself a rationalist, and understand to an A-Level extent how traditional vaccines work, but I have no clue how these new mRNA vaccines work (except that they're safe and decently effective) and so can't call bullshit, and the internet is just kind of rife with misinformation about the vaccines right now, so I'm turning to y'all to pick some educated brains if that's alright. Effervescent Bubble (talk) 01:33, 15 March 2021 (UTC)

Welcome to RationalWiki! I'm no expert, but I agree that the side effects are indeed a good thing, provided that you quarantine when you have them, and they don't last any longer than a day or two. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 01:38, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
The side effects are a good thing insofar as they indicate that your immune system is responding properly, and indeed likely more strongly than in those without side effects. The mRNA vaccine basically works like this: the mRNA from the vaccine enters cells, where it is taken up by ribosomes. These ribosomes then synthesize the viral proteins coded for by the mRNA, which can then exit the cell and trigger an immune response. There is no basis for claims that the vaccine has any interaction with DNA (this would require reverse transcriptase, which is not contained in the vaccines). (talk) 03:15, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
Screw these side effects! I'm taking a homeopathic vaccine. Guaranteed no side effects! (Though unfortunately no real effects either)Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 14:17, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
And I'm gonna just inject myself with Lysol, as the Orange Teflon God recommends. /s --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 16:41, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
If you get serious side effects beyond "minor rash" from a weakened strain of the virus, you are exactly the person who would not survive an actual infection. Sure, there's around a 50/50 chance you wouldn't have gotten sick otherwise, but knowing there's only a 50/50 chance you aren't in the path of a bullet, you should still duck. CorruptUser 17:21, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
I'm actually going to make sure I get Bill Gate's microsoft funded vaccines because I really want those microchips in my blood stream. If they control me then it takes all of the unpleasant decision making off my shoulders :) ShabiDOO 17:29, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
I can offer you a shot of battery acid to burn the little bugs out. That or you can douse yourself in radiation to get rid of the... blood... nanites. (Fallout 4, Tinker Tom). CorruptUser 19:16, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
I dunno. Do you have any vaccines with hallucinogens in them? ShabiDOO 19:22, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
I recommend my "dragon-chaser", made with artisanal poppy-extract. Just remember, never share needles, and if you are desperate for cash and need to do a little "this and that", get the cash up front and no glove means no love...CorruptUser 19:42, 15 March 2021 (UTC)
Please. I only use the finest shower mold and nuclear waste in my homemade vaccines. Laughing.gif Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 13:34, 16 March 2021 (UTC)
But seriously though, on a sad note, a few weeks ago, my uncle's mother got the first shot but got COVID afterward. They gave her the second shot immediately after to stop the virus, but the shock and/or side-effects killed her. Prayers (or the atheist equivalent) are appreciated. (Don't worry, I'm not an anti-vaxxer.) Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 13:39, 16 March 2021 (UTC)
Why would they give her the second shot? Doesn't make sense to me.
The way I understand vaccines, you either get a live but weak strain of the virus, or dead virus parts. In the first case, let's say you need to be inoculated against Grizzly-Pox, your body gets injected with Wimpy-Pox first, and after several days, develops antibodies which are not just effective on Wimpy-Flu but Grizzly-Pox as well. In the second case, your body is injected with Grizzly-Pox corpses, harmless but it makes your body think it's being infected with Grizzly-Pox, and eventually develops antibodies that work on living Grizzly-Pox. But in both cases, your body and immune system are at work, using up limited resources. I don't imagine that having Grizzly-Pox, and then a few days later getting infected with Wimpy-Pox, is of any benefit, considering your body then diverts resources away from fighting one to fight the other. CorruptUser 14:32, 16 March 2021 (UTC)
Vaccines work by priming the adaptive immune system to promptly destroy a kind of germ if it’s encountered in the future. This process typically takes weeks to develop, and does not produce overt physiological side effects. The difference it produces is the production of a population of immune cells bearing particular molecular markers, which mostly just sit around waiting to be exposed to something that fits their marker.
Side effects from vaccines are typically from things other than this process. A live vaccine produces an actual infection, which can have symptoms. Other sorts of vaccines contain a mix of various ingredients, and these may produce allergic reactions or have other unintended interactions with metabolic systems. These are, without exception, undesirable, and a perfect vaccine has no effects besides producing lasting adaptive immunity.
Strictly speaking, some of the “vaccines” for SARS-CoV-2 aren’t actually vaccines. A vaccine, as traditionally defined, contains an antigen which prompts an adaptive immune response. The RNA “vaccines” don’t contain antigens, but instead contain instructions for producing antigens. These are delivered to cells, where the antigen is produced, after which it prompts an adaptive immune response. This involves a heretofore-untested delivery system, as well as the complication of the RNA instructions not being perfect copies of the desired instruction, which introduce possibilities for complications of the sort mentioned above. Rushing vaccines in response to a pandemic doesn’t have a very good historical record. The combination of an often-asymptomatic virus with variable effects, vaccines rushed through quality control, and general politicization means that cost-benefit calculations are vague at the moment. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 05:49, 20 March 2021 (UTC)

Lets turn RationalWiki into a church (hear me out)[edit]

I propose that we create the First Church of RationalWiki. We could make so much money from tithing. Create a theology and get a smooth talker without a moral compass (likely a timeshare salesmen).

Imagine the cash we could make! Also we should sell dubious self-help books and mix orange juice with marijuana to sell as a fake cure for cancer. Once enough money is obtained we buy dirt cheap air time on basic cable, give a fire/brimstone speech and suck the parishioners bank accounts dry. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 21:57, 19 March 2021 (UTC)

That sounds like a great idea but...do you really think that a church could make vast sums of money? ;) ShabiDOO 23:37, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
One name- Kenneth Copeland. He is the richest preacher in the United States. He is charismatic, a smooth talker and lacks a moral compass. Just follow his example. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 23:45, 19 March 2021 (UTC))
Wait, what? How are we supposed to get Kenneth Copeland to run the rationalwiki church? Dude seems pretty committed to his current endeavors. ;LGol Sarnitt (talk) 05:11, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
It was just an example of the type of person we would need. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 13:26, 20 March 2021 (UTC)


On March 18, Kanye West became the richest black person in the history of America. Cheers! Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 23:40, 19 March 2021 (UTC)

No. IveBeenFrank (talk) 13:13, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
Though West is the most insanely rich black person. Bongolian (talk) 04:12, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

CCP's co-option of Confucianism[edit]

I've read a lot recently about China's government co-opting Confucian ideology to consolidate their authority. Essentially, the inherently pro-establishment nature of Confucian philosophy and the symbol of Confucius as the embodiment of China's history and culture makes Confucianism a good crutch to fall on to augment public approval. This interests me because of how violently anti-religion the CCP authorities were during the 20th century, which shows that even they are susceptible to dispositional/ideological shifts. Although I don't actually think they give a fuck about religious or philosophical ideas, this is if anything an attempt to legitimize their rule by falling back on cultural and national identity. Anyways, what are your ideas? Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 05:56, 20 March 2021 (UTC)

The CCP disowned their communist roots long ago. They're more interested in maintaining control and creating a stronger China than anything else; ideology changes on a whim to suit their needs. IveBeenFrank (talk) 11:49, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
Confucianism is one of the most convincing and attractive of all the political philosophies. My basic understanding is that it teaches that human existence is a web of relationships. Inequality is a necessary and inescapable feature of each of them, even between friends. Universal equality is a pipe dream. So these inescapable inequalities need to be tempered by custom, where the powerful are only able to demand what has been granted them in the past. Here is the basis for a conservative critique of ultracapitalism. This makes a great deal of sense to me, even if reconciling this with Marxist rhetoric seems quite a task. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱsos. 12:08, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
The state of China today... Confucius probably shit himself in his grave upon hearing the "adoption" of his school of thought by the PRC. Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 12:38, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
@IveBeenFrank That does appear to be the case, doesn't it? Nothing about China's contemporary economic policy is communist in nature, but they still promote communist literature and personages. From what I've read, they even consider Confucian ideas that they are promoting to be subordinate to communist ideas.
@Smerdis of Tlön I agree that Confucianism is fascinating, and you're mostly correct about its structure. Confucianism emphasizes social structures and proper government, seeing the two as the realization of a sort of cosmic order on a human plane. That being said, it does maintain some explicitly religious concepts, since all major philosophical trends in China inherited and transformed (rationalized in the case of Confucianism) ancient Chinese ideas. You are also correct in its emphasis on inequality. Confucian relationships almost always have a superior-inferior dynamic, and the ruler-subject relationship is one of them. Probably why the CCP is interested in it, right?
@IRonMan Yeah that probably is the case. However, despite the presence of 'Confucian' political/religious institutions throughout China's history, I don't think the benevolent government idealized in Confucian texts ever fully existed at any point in China's history. Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 22:09, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
I got the impression that the various Chinese dynasties ruled more by legalistic principles with a Confucian facade. Artificius (talk) 23:15, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
@Artificius Legalism certainly had an impact. The only explicitly legalistic state was the Qin, which was the first state which unified China under a centralized bureaucracy. Their legalistic idea produced horrifically violent punishments, which backfired when rebellions first started breaking out, since generals who failed to quell rebellions just joined the rebels rather than return to the court and be executed. The Qin state fell in less than 15 years and was remembered as a ruthless and unpopular dictatorship. It was succeeded by the Han, which removed some of the more violent punishments from legal codes and was not nearly as authoritarian. The Han, being a stable bureaucracy that lasted centuries, needed a civil service to remain functional. It created a civil service examination system based on Confucian texts that was practiced all the way up to 1905. In essence, knowledge of Confucian texts was mandatory to achieve positions of governmental power throughout most of China's history, and Confucian religious principles also dominated most forms of social life in China in ways that are also still visible today. But the affinity for violent punishments and authoritarianism is also certainly visible throughout most of the dynasties. Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 23:22, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
In fairness to the Qin, though, their actual law codes were only recently rediscovered and weren't as barbaric as the Han portrayed them. In particular, they explicitly discouraged use of torture unless someone was demonstrably lying and showed no intentions of letting up; the Qin explicitly noted that confessions under torture in any other scenario were basically useless because (as they correctly figured out) tortured people will usually say about anything to make it stop. So while they were definitely extremely harsh, as per Han Feizi's rantings (he who was so strident in writing but apparently stuttered so badly he couldn't speak in public), they weren't exactly punishing jaywalking with the nine familial exterminations; the Han definitely overstated it as a way of cultivating some legitimacy. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:05, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
@The Blade of the Northern Lights Yeah that sounds correct. Han writers resented the Qin for the whole book burning event, so bias in writing would certainly be present. In addition to the Confucian-Legalism discussion, parts of The Analects distinctly acknowledge that punishments and rewards are the lowest form of education, and that a society that operates around those punishment-reward motivations has no real virtue. Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 01:30, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

Possible that I might need surgery[edit]

Went to the doctor yesterday for a checkup and I asked if she could examine my foot and ankle. The doctor wants me to see an Orthopedic physician.

She told me that the Orthopedic physician might do surgery to repair my foot and ankle. Also got an x-ray and it was agonizing when I had to adjust my foot for the x-rays to be done.

Surgery is a last resort though. Fun times. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 17:41, 20 March 2021 (UTC)

Wishing you the best. Get well soon.Jeh2ow Damn son! 00:32, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
For over a year my foot has been swollen. Near the end of 2019 me and my brother were walking to the library when I fell and twisted my ankle. My brother who has severe Autism had to walk over a mile to get my mom to drive where I was. Worse was that people just drove past while I was on the ground. Also from where I live to the library is a country road without sidewalks. Thankfully there was no snow on the ground. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 01:18, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Wow, that's terrible. Best wishes on your recovery! Speaking from personal experience, post-surgical physical therapy does not necessarily get you back to 'normal', just back to a baseline of functionality. Post-physical therapy strengthening exercises, such as from a high-quality Pilates instructor, could be helpful. Bongolian (talk) 04:26, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
I'll keep you in my prayers. Don't put pressure on the foot! Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 20:39, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Most likely when I see the Orthopedic doctor I might be getting a brace (best case and most likely scenario). Hopefully I avoid surgery (although I am curious what it is like under the knife, weird huh).
If you've never been anesthetized, it's absolutely nothing like what you'd think; you're breathing, then you suddenly wake up however many minutes/hours later; when I got my tonsils taken out at age 4 I had trouble keeping anything down for hours, but both when I got the labrum in my right shoulder fixed and when I got my wisdom teeth pulled I was just groggy and not able to walk right for about 1/2 hour. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:09, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

God, not this again...[edit]

Indonesia's highest clerical authority apparently declared the Oxford vaccine haraam [1]. And I thought the EU fretting over blood clotting was the worst we'd see post-Trump. MeowPurr 16:21, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

Well then. Ban travel to/from Indonesia until their COVID numbers drop enough. That's all you have to do... CorruptUser 02:57, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Pretty much the stupidity you’d expect from Islamist authorities. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 03:21, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

Brainstar Ratings[edit]

So... I'm thinking, we should promote the following articles to Silver.

All are extremely well documented and missional, though not "effectively the only source anyone searching the webs would need". CorruptUser 15:20, 19 March 2021 (UTC)

Ima upgrade them. Edit war with me if you must... CorruptUser 16:24, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
No problems here, chief. Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 18:54, 19 March 2021 (UTC)
upgraded Ken Ham to Bronze. May be worth silver.
MGTOW, worth bronze? You decide.
War on Drugs, I bronzed that shit.CorruptUser
Blegh we need a vote for upgrading to Silver. Undid upgrades, added comment to talk pages. Links in next section

The List So Far[edit]

(add as you see fit)

Talk:COVID-19 pandemic Upgraded
Talk:The Daily Stormer Upgraded
Talk:Global warming Upgraded
Talk:ISIS Upgraded
Talk:2021 U.S. Capitol riot Upgraded

sigh... Finally through the whole list of bronzes. Feel free to help out and add to this list as you see fit. It's kinda important, because bumping to silver means we have more decisions to make for gold, and we can always use fresh cover articles... CorruptUser 02:51, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
We definitely need more cover stories, haven’t had a new one since February 2019. I had a quick look at V, W, X, Y, and Z and couldn’t see anything silver-worthy, but I might have missed something. Will do more later, hopefully I’ll actually find one.Christopher (talk) 19:30, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
@CorruptUser I would like to nominate Tiananmen Square Massacre for silver. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 20:57, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Added to list. I don't "own" the list in this section, feel free to add as you see fit. CorruptUser 21:23, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

I hate my racist aunt[edit]

I meet up with my relatives at my family's time share and my mom somehow told my aunt about my plans to go to Anthrocon this year (assuming everything reopens). She then posted on Facebook warning me not to go because "it attracts people with bad intentions". Thanks for the advice, you are really saving my cousin's life by making her carry a big-ass knife to the park in your white-suburban neighborhood , and please tell me how to protect myself from "the Muslims" when I ever go to Detroit like you did with grandma. PoorlyDrawnRockford.jpeg Rockford the Roe boop my snootpraise Oscar Wilde 03:46, 20 March 2021 (UTC)

Knives aren't very good for self defense. A pistol would be statistically much better. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 05:14, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
Or just bring a stun gun if you think you're going to be jumped in an alley or something. Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 12:41, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
Oh yeah. Racist ants are the worst.

Ariel31459 (talk) 22:12, 20 March 2021 (UTC)

One answer might be 'Actually, I am one of the people with bad intentions (so everybody I meet will be fine).
A way of dealing with 'annoying people' (including the nuisance-phonecallers and suchlike) - learn enough of some obscure language(s) to persuade them to ignore you, and/or find ways of persuading 'them' to ignore you. Anna Livia (talk) 13:45, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

'my cousin carries a big knife', 'nah you want a pistol', 'just bring a stun gun' in my neck of the woods, each of those options carries a jail sentence and marks you as wrong un. a set of keys and good manners is all we get here for personal defense. that said i can think of few circumstances were anything more is really necessary. all ineffective if a threat that warrants an armed deterrant presents itself, it would have to be directly in front you for you to point your weaponary at ne'er do wells and likely have to be unsheathed and ready to stab, waving it about before hand or pistols or knives will be pointing at you which kinda makes drawing a risky prospect. and your potential assailants had better not have their mates with them. dont walk down dark alleys in rough neighbourhoods. stick to busy areas with lots of potential witnesses to deter such folk. dont wear your diamonds out or wave your $500 mobile phone around advertising potential loot for muggers, and consider your top hat and tails inappropriate attire to not attracting undue attention. minding your own business is your best defence. thinking you are john wick because you got some pointy metal in your pocket, probably not so great. take cab if really too dicey to walk around. AMassiveGay (talk) 16:51, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

Best thing is to carry a nuke with you wherever you go. MeowPurr 17:06, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Or you could do what my grandad did: dress cheaply and carry a big stick. Now of course, what he wore was different, as he existed in a different area. But his sticks remained, a cross between smoothed logs and walking sticks. He made them himself, focusing on creating a cheap nonlethal weapon that would frighten away potential attackers without antagonizing the police. But he did tell me one thing that's valuable for this thread: nothing you have on your person could ever be worth your life. If they've got guns, it's best to just shill out the 1000 dollars and rush home to deactivate your credit cards rather than wind up with a bullet between your eyes. IveBeenFrank (talk) 18:16, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
AnthroconWikipedia is a furry convention, and while I have no experience with that specific con, in general there is not a huge need to worry about "people with bad intentions" at your more nerd/geeky gatherings (no more so than most of life, at least). Now, I will also say that geeky / nerdy conventions often tend to have crossover with a few crowds (ranging from the RenFaire folks to the fetish crowd) that carry "cough" *interesting* peace-bonded weapons. But I've never heard of an incident where there was even a need to use such a thing. Nerd/geek cons have security staff and work with law enforcement, that is always enough. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 12:02, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

EAS scenario thumbnail update[edit]

Made some changes to the thumbnail.

EAS scenario thumbnail (of doom)

Tried to take the previous constructive criticism to heart. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 22:18, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

You should do a Burmese military EAS. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 22:23, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Probably won't be for a while.

--Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 01:25, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

Seriously, remove the text entirely. Those solid red lines behind the text look awful and the text itself is still rather small, it is hard to read. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 14:38, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
A dude on my Discord didn't like my thumbnail so he made one. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 17:21, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
The pictures themselves look better now, but I agree that the text should be removed if the solid lines behind it can't be gotten rid of without making it hard to read. Right now, they obscure the eyes in the left picture. (talk) 17:27, 22 March 2021 (UTC)


Today I watched Stuart Little 1 and 2 (for the first time in probably fifteen years) and remembered that the family's house has a black and white tiled floor. PREPOSTEROUS! They're trying to brainwash our children to joining the forces of the FREEMASONS! Why else would they have put in, of all things, a BLACK AND WHITE TILED FLOOR into the set? You think that's a coincidence?! WAKE UP SHEEPLE!!! Aaronmichael5 00:21, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

You foo. You poor deluded fool. To even suggest that this is a Freemason plot is the very height of ignorant pseudohistorical conspiracy woo.
It's obviously a plot by the International Chess Federation to convert our children into Bobby Fischer clones. Orgone is probably somehow involved. Kencolt (talk) 07:25, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
You're both so simpleminded. Black and white - yin and yang! It's so obviously a CCP plot to capture our children's minds! MeowPurr 07:36, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Can you nerds stop making bad satire and go to bed? No one cares about stupid CGI mouse family movies. VerminWiki (talk) 08:44, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
And no jokes about how it took me three edits to make one post to spite me. I already called it. VerminWiki (talk) 08:49, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Anyone ever hire a mason? They're anything but free. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 13:39, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Some jackass, circa 1860s. "Did you hear, Lincoln made every Black person a Free Man!" "They're free now? I'll take them all!" CorruptUser 15:07, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

My amazing school DNS filter everyone[edit]

Screenshot 2021-03-22 at 9.15.58 AM.png

PoorlyDrawnRockford.jpeg Rockford the Roe boop my snootpraise Oscar Wilde 14:23, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

I was once blocked from a website by my school's content filter and the reason it gave for the block was "Arts/Culture Content." I literally go to an art school. Princess Mononokeradio contact 04:30, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

Articles for Demotion[edit]


As I was looking for articles to upgrade to silver/gold, I noticed that others had suggested an upgrade in the past but were left unanswered. I think we could use an "Article for Demotion" page, a la Articles For Deletion. Creating the template won't be too difficult, but basically, just one page where we can quickly view all articles that are being proposed, make things a bit easier going forward. It's not critical, but it's an important part of the Wiki as more cover stories means a bit more variety for people, more return users, etc etc. CorruptUser 00:39, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

This is a good idea. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 01:16, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
I agree. It took more than a year before anyone replied to my suggestion for demotion of one page. Bongolian (talk) 07:03, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
I think that's a great idea. Our standards are evolving and certainly aren't the same as they were in the "good old days". I bet there's some utter shite that's officially Bronze. Spud (talk) 12:15, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Ok, was referring to articles that needed an upgrade to silver/gold. Before I create this, we should decide on the title. Is "Articles for Demotion" the best name? And what design should we use; I posted the current blandish one below.
Wigorw.svg A user really likes this article, and suggests that this be given a higher Brainstar. Feel free to join in on the discussion at this article's entry on the Articles for demotion page
CorruptUser 15:42, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Why not make it Demotion/Promotion? Make it one place where we decide if articles go up or down in status. Then you could understand it as an article being "demoted" from Bronze to nothing or "promoted" from Bronze to nothing. You could think of it as an article being "promoted" from Bronze to Silver or "demoted" from Bronze to Silver. It works whether you brain's in RationalWiki Looking-Glass Land or in the real world. Spud (talk) 17:22, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Hmm... let's come up with a good name. Can always move/change things around. "Articles to Brain" CorruptUser 17:53, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

On the other hand, I also believe a revision for more comprehensive standards is fit. Silver to me feels more than just "is missional, has references, is well-written". I like a brainstorm for articles to brain. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario! 20:16, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

Israel elections are tomorrow, prepare for disappointment[edit]

There's a lot of anti-Netanyahu sentiment right now, but none of the parties against him have much in common besides being against Likud. I predict that Likud will maintain power with its Knesset allies propping it up. Still, maybe something interesting will happen. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 02:05, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

If you have high blood pressure, you shouldn't worry about that.UncleKrampus (talk) 17:57, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

According to the fish hook theory, all centrists hold right-wing beliefs[edit]

So does that mean they all voted for Trump in 2016 and perhaps 2020? 2A02:120B:C3FB:3B40:822:A52E:159E:9C79 (talk) 14:45, 8 March 2021 (UTC)

Can I see a citation for this description of "fish hook theory"? ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:48, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
Centrism haters are stuck in a cave-man tribalistic mentality. They are incapable of recognising that political ideologies are really complex and they cannot possibly fit into two homogeneous tribes (leftist vs rightist). People who say they are centrist (a badly defined nebulous middle path) challenges the world view that everyone is in two camps: the right one vs the wrong one, the valliant liberals vs the stubborn conservatives (or likewise the couragoues defenders of tradition vs the progressive shit-stirrers). People who don't openly identify as a member of those camps make political tribalists anxious and nervous and their reaction is to attack them, smear them and pour hate on them. They would rather have someone not in their so called "tribe" be clearly the opposite of them, something that they can be against...than to be sort of in their camp or ambiguous about things. To them...centrists just don't make decisions, make stuff up as they go along, cannot be easily pegged anywhere and are actually less easy to generalise about and critique. They see centrists as a serious problem or threat when in reality the big threat to society is tribalistic mentalities, digging into dividing everyone into two stupid ridiculous false camps where division reigns and compromise is impossible.
Claiming that centrists are just "Trump voters" is another way to force them into one of the two members of the false dichotomy (left/right or right/wrong). Better to lump them in with your enemies because it makes it easier to attack them and smear them by attributing false beliefs to them. When I hear people blab on with their centrist hate...all I really hear is: "ME NAMED CAVEMAN...ME LIKE MY WOODEN CLUB...ME NO LIKE STARRNG INTO SUN...SUN HURTS EYES...ME NO LIKE OTHER TRIBE...THEY BAD...ME GO AND FIGHT THEM...STRANGER WORSE...STRANGER IS SCARY...DON'T KNOW STRANGER...I CLUB HIM NOW". ShabiDOO 15:09, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
Good post!CorruptUser 15:12, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
@Shabidoo I've honestly never seen "fish hook theory" described this way. Maybe it's because I hang out in slightly more mature leftist circles, but the way I've heard it described is either A), a tongue-in-jeek joke, or B), that centrists are more susceptible to right-wing propaganda and arguments than left-wingers. The second one is fair enough, though the flip side of that coin is that centrists are also susceptible to left-wing propaganda and arguments as well. Hence I'm asking for a citation for the BoN's definition. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 15:16, 8 March 2021 (UTC)

@GrammarCommie I think this might answer your question. The fish hook theory is a fringe theory invented as a contrarian take against the horseshoe theory, I don't know if Wikipedia has an article on this. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 15:14, 8 March 2021 (UTC)

@MarioSuperstar77 I'm aware of what "fish hook theory" is and who invented it. I'm disputing the BoN's definition since it conflicts with the version I've heard in the past. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 15:18, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
The "Horseshoe Theory" isn't promoted by "centrists" because they believe An-Com and Nazism are the same ideology, but rather, those on both the Far Left and Far Right want to force their views and policies onto everyone else, violently if need be. The boot being on the left or right foot determines which of your sides gets kicked, not whether or not you need an ambulance. In fairness, in recent years the right foot has been doing a lot more kicking, but that hasn't always been nor will always be the case. To a Centrist, both Far Left and Far Right are trying to control what you can say in public, what your kids learn in school, and what culture you have access to, even though there may not be much overlap in terms of what gets banned under one side or the other. There are exceptions of course where both sides want the same thing banned, but they are not particularly common. CorruptUser 15:44, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
I think the theory is supposed to represent the internet "centrist" to Far-Right pipeline. It doesn't necessarily refer to how those people vote. Rockford the Roe (talk) 16:45, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
Centrist is slightly debatable. There is Center-Left and Center-Right. One type might lean toward one political ideology or another. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 17:50, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
Another example of false-political dichotomy tribal think. Just cannot accept people don't fall into two neat little groups. ShabiDOO 18:10, 8 March 2021 (UTC)
I've faced this myself. To some of my relatives, I'm a radical libural naughty boy, and to some of my classmates, I'm a deep blue Tory who just happens to be anti-Trump and anti-Farage. Dear, dear... MeowPurr 01:37, 9 March 2021 (UTC)
As a proud hater of self-professed 'centrists', this is simply not true. What I, and many others, find frustrating about them is their unique blend of smugness combined ironically with their intense gullibility. To fetishise the centre as a moral good is to makes oneself exceptionally prone to all sorts of bullying and relegates one's political input to impotent wailing while 'extremists' use their rhetoric to delineate the centrists politics by proxy. Centrists like to think they've smartly moved past their tribalism to be more effective and rational. In reality they're mostly just mugs that the political right runs circles around.
One does not need to submit the world to neat dichotomies to reject the dog-shit politics that makes up centrism. And one can most certainly be a tribal dick-head and a centrist, and often the two go together! Get ready, it's... (talk) 16:05, 9 March 2021 (UTC)
Deconstructing your caveman talk I can only think of two things: 1. Centrist haters come across as the smuggest political talkers I know. 2. Way to super mega extra hypergeneralise about an already fuzzy group of people. Zheesh...next thing you know you're going to tell me all blue eyed people are smug people who all think in the same convenient way that makes it easy to criticise them. ShabiDOO 16:49, 9 March 2021 (UTC)
Good post! Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 18:10, 9 March 2021 (UTC)
@Shabidoo How on earth did you know I was blue eyed!!?! Seriously though, to identify the centre (a position that is relativistic by definition) as inherently valuable in of itself is to out oneself as either a coward or a grifter. If you want to actually critique that, feel free to take a shot. Get ready, it's... (talk) 22:09, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
Nah. I only need to critique your cave-person politics once. ShabiDOO 22:53, 12 March 2021 (UTC)
@Shabidoo Currently your critique, by your own admission, is based on you ignoring what the other person is saying so you can substitute a lazy strawman and maintain your tribal sense of superiority. I'm going to hope your critique has more substance than that? But that might be the optimist in me... Get ready, it's... (talk) 23:10, 12 March 2021 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Ugh seriously? Does this have to even be spelt out for you? The political spectrum is just a handy way to organise a bad categorisation of people's political positions for only two aspects (progressive rights and distribution of wealth). And even then those two don't over-lap well. I know you likely live in America where everyone is obscenely forced into a blue-red dichotomy (so called "left vs right" or "liberal vs. conservative) where everyone is lumped into two totally artificial and false groups which some take as an important part of their identity. However it leaves out a grey area which most other countries with more than two political parties recognise. You can have people who support progressive human rights issues who however don't agree with super generous redistribution of wealth and equally you can have those who believe in funding generous social programs and yet aren't comfortable with progressive ideas. That's why left and right should be a vague marker of where you are on the spectrum...not a part of your identity. In most of Europe it is not. You have parties that tend toward the left or right but they can cover a wide variety of political ideas. Not only that but progressive rights and redistribution of wealth are also not the only two political aspects, they also cover things such as nationalism, military and foreign policy, education, secularism/religion and so on. These don't easily fall within the left/right false dichotomy. There are a SHIT TON of reasons some might identify as being centrist. A small number:

  1. The may be progressive on one aspect but conservative on another making identifying with one difficult
  2. They don't like being labelled "left" or "right" which is an entirely reasonable position
  3. If they live in a country with only two parties they may change their position depending on the current candidates or if it is at a national or regional level and don't want to be boxed in
  4. They recognise the arbitrary and overgeneralising nature of labelling oneself "leftist" or "rightist" and don't want to participate in this absuridty
  5. There are other political aspects aside from redistribution and human rights where they hold political views that conflict with the arbitrary "left" vs. "right" cliché
  6. They support centrist parties in countries with multiple parties to support stable governments
  7. They simply hold moderate views across the board
  8. They are flexible with their political views and they easily change
  9. They don't want to choose any side and just go with "centrist"

All of these are ENTIRELY REASONABLE reasons to be centrist and none of them automatically make one arrogant. My second issue with your caveman talk is, you are hyper generalising about a group of people who may identify as centrist (the arrogance of not joining one of these two false tribes) for a shit ton of different reasons. You are likely taking the vocal behaviour of a few centrists who may have an arrogant way of talking and assuming everyone else is just like them. That is stereotyping...something you probably shouldn't do. In the various countries I have lived in I have usually voted for parties that have traditionally been labelled as quite left on the political spectrum (though I cannot say I have ever voted for a communist or extremist party). In Belgium and Spain I had/have multiple progressive parties to choose from (which can include regional or one party issues like environmentalism/separatism/aminal-rights/online-pirating. All of those parties have voters who are progressive/centrist/conservative making it all even more complicated. For all of these reasons identifying as a leftist or rightist is already ridiculous in my opinion. So if I must be placed on that spectrum I am quite left. And yet I entirely understand why someone may identify as centrist, rightists or better none of the above. Attacking people who don't take either label and or identify in the middle is fucking ridiculous. Generalising about them because of how a few obnoxious people behave is super stupid. Even in the united states where many feel the need to identify as red/blue, left/right, dem/reb, lib/con or centrist in all those cases...none of them as a group can be easily stereotyped or as a whole labelled assholes, arrogant, stupid etc. They are just super broad divisions of diverse political opinions. Stop being ridiculous or stupid about arbitrary political groups. ShabiDOO 13:22, 13 March 2021 (UTC)

Big talk from the person who's only argument, apparently, was to suggest they're a stupid caveman; a lesser human being than you. They flat-out stated what they hated most about centrists was their smugness, then you went and proved them right by being a smug jerk to them. Well done! On a personal note, I used to consider myself a centrist; then I started seeing just how useless and impotent the system they champion is at actually helping and protecting people - particularly the vulnerable and marginalised, and particularly during uncertain times such as these - especially in comparison to how eager it is to provide even more protection to the rich and powerful than they already have at even the first minor sign of trouble. I realised that this isn't going to save us, no matter how much the powerful wish it to. 2604:3D09:167F:FDA0:E1B9:5A83:4534:6D2D (talk) 16:26, 18 March 2021 (UTC)
I see you skimmed all of the replies as usual. I clearly said I am "quite left" and not centrist in the least. So way to not read all the text and come to a hasty and silly conclusion. Also only one of the persons said their problem was with their "smugness" (who is this "they" you are talking about?). To which I replied that generalising about an entire group of people on a political spectrum as "smug" is fucking ridiculous. Don't agree? Then demostrate with evidence that "centrists" are smug (not just the few people you've interacted with). I also didn't say that they were lesser people but that their attempt to tribalise people on the political spectrum and force people into a "them vs. us" group best explains their irrational hatred of a varied and diverse people. I know you skimmed all this so you might want to re-read it. We all still have cave-people brains and we all tribalise people all the time. Might be better to avoid that as much as you can...and one way to start with that is getting over irrational hatred towards a group of people on a political spectrum. I take it you are a centrist hater as well 2604:3D09:167F:FDA0:E1B9:5A83:4534:6D2D ??? ShabiDOO 17:19, 18 March 2021 (UTC)
"I want Leftwing Policy X, instead of Rightwing Policy Z!"
"I hate Policy Z too, but Policy X is not only untested, it's fundamentally flawed as well. Stick with Centrist Policy Y, better the devil you know and all."
"You hate Policy Z too but don't agree with Policy X? You are a monster, die die die!!! CorruptUser 17:30, 18 March 2021 (UTC)
Dump them in the lake. If they drown they weren't centrists and were holy. If they don't...they are centrists. BURN THEM!ShabiDOO 17:42, 18 March 2021 (UTC)
Or just weigh them against a duck... CorruptUser 17:53, 18 March 2021 (UTC)

I think it's sort of ironic to dismiss people on the basis of making what you see as bad generalizations by making a bunch of baseless generalizations about how this outgroup makes baseless generalizations about you. Never actually addressing the contents of their ideology but the perceived personality you think all of them have, which as a reminder is just stereotyping.

Taking a course in political science you probably would just be taught that centrism or being in the centre of the political spectrum simply means you ideologically do not differ from the established status quo in the country you occupy. Left and Right are defined on the basis of deviations of that status quo, with more socially traditional values and tendencies toward free-market economics on the right -- and on the left you have people who believe we should replace those norms with ones deem socially progressive, with a great preference towards socialist non-market-based economics.

This makes "centrism" highly contingent on the political system you exist under. Being a centrist in a nordic country is dramatically different than being a centrist in the US. Being a centrist in Sweden would make you a moderate leftist in the US, but if you were a social democrat in say soviet Russia back when the USSR was still around that would make you to the right. Now if you are the type of person who sees the liberal white establishment of the US as having intrinsic to it systems of white supremacy, institutionalized patriarchy, and an inherently classist structure then it would make sense why you would not approve of folks who think dismantling all those things either through reform or revolution as "too leftist" and worth avoiding. It makes you complicit in that oppression. That's not a generalization that simply follows from being a "centrist" in the US -- you approve the status quo. You may not "as bad" as republicans or those to the right who just want to double down on these social hierarchies but you aren't exactly off the hook either.

Not understanding this just makes you come off as politically illiterate -- Only Sort of Dumb 06:06, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

I cannot make a whole lot of sense of this and I'm not entirely sure if you are addressing this to me or to someone else.ShabiDOO 10:47, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
The center is an inherently relative (and conservative) position, is what OSD is saying, and since the center is a relative position that is in favor of the status quo, by definition by being a centrist you are upholding the system, and thus you make yourself morally responsible for it by doing so. In a way, you are no better than rightists, and in a way, you ARE a rightist. Try reading for comprehension next time. Oxyaena Harass 12:37, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
From Wikipedia, "Centrism is a political outlook or position that involves acceptance and/or support of a balance of social equality and a degree of social hierarchy, while opposing political changes which would result in a significant shift of society strongly to either the left or the right." It doesn't mean whatever the heck you are thinking in terms of PoliSci. Simply put, "centrism" is "centrism". It doesn't mean "exactly what we have as policy", but rather "somewhere near the middle on an issue". Centrists can absolutely oppose a policy that's in place; we call those policies "unpopular". CorruptUser 14:01, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
What the fuck Oxy?!?!?! Centrism =/= Conservatism. Conservatives are form of centrism (center to center-right) but centrism as a category encompasses more than just conservatism. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:33, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Furthermore, to address Cory and Shabi, OSD is correct. "left", "center", and "right" are dependent on region and time period, as well as the pre-existing status quo. I keep telling you this shit, in particular in regard to "radical" ideas, but you don't fucking listen. The concept of status quo vs radical is related to the dynamic of left-center-right, and highly entwined with it. This is why Bernie Sanders is a "radical leftist" in the US but pretty fucking mild in the Nordic countries, where the status quo favors social democracy rather than neolibalism with reactionary tendencies. The left, right and center of the one dimensional political spectrum are highly context dependent, and your personal politics don't fucking come into it. If those facts make you uncomfortable, well tough fucking shit. Gods and goddesses fucking orally and anally above and below.... ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 14:44, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Shagnarök ftw Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 18:05, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Wikipedia's definition of centrism is highly american-centric. Centrist does not inherently mean "status quo" or even "resistance to significant shifts". For example a broad section of centrists in the US could take very different positions on universal healthcare which, for many Americans would be seen as a significant shift...supporting universal health care is not remotely "status quo". Meanwhile they may be against gun control but pro-life and the next centrist could be the opposite of all of those things. There are MANY reasons why someone self-identifies as centrist. And sorry commergrammie, but I don't remember ever insinuating that what centrist is...is not dependent on where you live. Of course it is. What I am uneasy with is over relying on broad classifications of political ideologies. Even grouping everyone into three blocks (left/centre/right) is extreme and it should just be a vague outline for placing people on a spectrum covering only two aspects of political ideology...NOT your identity. My whole distaste with centrist haters are that 1) It's fucking absurd to hate an overly broad group of people to being as in...being a leftist hater or rightist hater is equally fucking nonsense. However centrist hate for me can be even more absurd because it can come with lots of terrible even worse generalisations (i.e. making incorrect assumptions of why someone self identifies with being centrist, wanting to lump everyone into even fewer blocks [left vs right], not understanding that some people are unsure of where they are on the spectrum and just go with centrist, assuming centre just equals "closet right", that a centrist could be a super mixed bag depending on the issues, that being centrist means judging the left or right negatively etc). No large grouping of humans can have such a homogeneous set of political ideas and hating them because you think they do is just pointless-hate. ShabiDOO 22:46, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
I think an issue with what you are describing is that none of what you said is strictly incompatible with the predominant ideology of the united states on which that country has been founded upon, namely liberalism. I live in a country that also has universal healthcare but "universal healthcare" is not incompatible with the ideology that dominates mainstream politics. This is what makes "centrism" next to useless as a political label, someone who is pro-gun control and pro-life is totally in line with liberalism as a political ideology, same with someone who is anti-gun control and pro-abortion -- in fact that usually reflect the liberal ideological basis that many right-libertarians describe themselves as being an extension of. I also think it comes with an unbelievable amount of privilege to suggest that it is nonsense to have a disdain for those who sit along a particular section of the political spectrum, politics is about the distribution of power who gets to have it, and who doesn't. I don't have to remind you how fundamentally incompatible LGBT+ rights are for the majority of those who align themselves with social conservatism. If an entire group of people identify themselves with an ideology that denies me a right to exist I am more than justified to dislike them for it. -- Only Sort of Dumb 01:16, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
... and another thing to add is that the Wikipedia definition of centrism with it being a political outlook that "involves acceptance and/or support of a balance of social equality and a degree of social hierarchy" again is not categorically distinct from liberalism. In fact, Wikipedia includes Christian democracy and social/welfare liberalism as examples of centrist political ideologies --Only Sort of Dumb 01:21, 24 March 2021 (UTC)

End the Filibuster[edit]

'Walks to his soap box'

In the media I am seeing three things in regard to the filibuster in the Senate: (For non Americans unfamiliar, the US has two chambers in the legislative branch, the smaller of the two, the Senate, requires a super-majority to end discussion on a bill, and proceed with voting on it. This chamber has 100 members, so 60 are required to end discussion)

  1. Lefties and some liberals eager to through the whole thing out to get shit done.
  2. Centrists and those on the right warning that there will be future pain by doing it.
  3. Media people of all stripes, claiming it would end bipartisanship as we know it.

As my moniker indicates, I am in favor of throwing the whole bloody thing out, and there are some primary reasons I support this.

Firstly, the idea that the filibuster encourages bipartisanship is bollocks. Since 2006, it has been used like blunt instrument to completely stop an administrations agenda cold. Though the GOP has been the most ruthless, the Dems have used it as well. This now incentivized the opposition to ignore the controlling party completely and then blame them for failing to deliver to their constituents. If instead, parties knew that the bill was going to pass with or without them, then they would try to craft law knowing that if it's going to pass they might as well get something in it. There were flashes of this with the ARP, when several GOP members made proposals, some versions of which made it into the bill. And even though the entirety of the GOP voted against it's passage, a few have been touting things in the bill that will help their constituents. Though the bill isn't bipartisan in terms of votes, several GOP governors and mayors supported it's passage, and it's popularity is well above 70%.

Additionally, I think the last 60 years of politics has hardened in many peoples minds that government is not supposed to work. Things are not actually supposed to get addressed, and Congress can only get together to solve things when their is a crisis (and even that is debatable). The party that wins control, should get to make the laws that they want. They have received the mandate from the people to act, and they should. There is some squirming, I think fairly, that because of the undemocratic make-up of the Senate, there is a fear that an un-filibustered GOP will do a bunch of terrible things. However, the GOP since Reagan has not actually stood for any thing. They have no real ideas, or honestly have any interest in doing things that help people. If they regain control in four or eight years, they will be empowered to do all the terrible things they say they support. And then they will be pilloried for the consequences of their actions. People dying of back-alley abortions won't exactly be a great thing to rally Americans behind. Nor will a widening wealth gap that will be supercharged by insane tax breaks and disruption of government services.

I can't believe I'm writing these words, but Americans need to actually suffer the disastrous policies of the GOP if they are ever to reject them.

'returns to the crowd' -RipCityLiberal (talk) 23:57, 19 March 2021 (UTC)

"Americans need to actually suffer the disastrous policies of the GOP if they are ever to reject them" It won't work. Here in Texas we've been pulling most of this shit for years, and it hasn't caused mass societal rejection of the GOP yet. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:03, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
To be honest, my observation of the mainstream media is that overall the mood is against it. The Economist (in a paywalled article, sorry) said "nay" to the filibuster and highlighted how it was largely used for racist civil rights opposition back in the day. The Washington Post pretty much did the same. McConnell's scored earth bullshit a few days ago on what would happen if the filibuster ended elicited a big "meh" from many outlets, largely because McConnell's basically done all the bullshit he threatened already. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 00:19, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
@PanGalacticGargleBlaster Is McConnell just posturing? What could he do to stop legislation without the filibuster? VerminWiki (talk) 05:10, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
As far as I'm concerned, McConnell is just a bullshit artist who, as typical for the GOP these days, performs the atypical dance where no government can happen, except for tax cuts for the wealthy and deregulation (regardless of whether the regulation is a good idea or not). This normally would not be a way to achieve popularity, but McConnell of course knows (ala the GOP side that is more intelligent than Donald Trump) that tossing off a few culture war nuggets that may or may not get implemented is a great way to rile up "the masses" of Kentucky to support shit that economically hurts them. So his rant on the filibuster contained cultural war bullshit bogeymen like "Planned Parenthood", abortion shit, guns, racism against immigrants "border security", and guns. So, yes, it's posturing, designed for the Fox News low information crowd. On the filibuster, it's IMHO one that might actually backfire, because McConnell has had *decades* of bullshit by now, and a routine like that is a clear sign that bipartisanship ain't gonna happen as long as the Ayn Rand worshiping donor class controls turds like him, perhaps moving your Joe Manchin types towards further reform. We'll see. A long term additional wrinkle of his routine these days is that many in the donor class actually care a little bit more about some issues (like climate change) than the GOP actually admits at this time, and more than a few of them certainly wouldn't support a party that hates democracy. Long term, we'll see how his slimy ass wiggles out of the fact that some of the "donor class" aren't quite as enthralled with the GOP anymore. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 05:36, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
I did student congress in high school, and we heard tale of student senate getting formed and immediately the adults had to end it because of filibuster. The three years I did it, the whole boogeyman of student senate was "filibuster." I don't really know if there was a student senate or not, but can you imagine somebody with a 10th grade reading level representing nobody other than themselves, since we all chose to take it as an extracurricular finding out about "the filibuster?" and debating a topic they don't like? Like, this was early oughts and kids in my state were saying letting felons who served their time vote was a Democrat strategy for votes. Liberal wasn't even a label. I never got into politics. I scored in state student congress final tally every year. But I always talked out of my ass. I literally faked scientific studies, 100% of the time if I had a statistic from a study it was made up and attributed to Dr. Samuel Mulholland of Michigan State University, just a made up a person that nobody in high school student congress could fact check on the fly and really waited for somebody to call it out, but nobody ever caught on that it was the same name every time because it didn't matter to anybody, we all just wanted to score points. And they liked me because I was really good friends with the guy who did presiding officer duties most often, and he liked me because I would wait on bills so he didn't have to call on me, until we let everybody give their speeches, and then I would stand up and give a crazy fervent speech for something, then raise my hand again after my allotted time and give a crazy fervent speech against my own speech. Like, I knocked out points in student congress for the sake of knocking out points, just to get on the scoreboard. I figured out if I listened to and talked about everybody else's speeches when I did my bullshit, whether I was on their side of not, they'd prop me up in the final scoring vote. I have seen legitimate US congresspersons do an absolutely worse job of that. But the filibuster, that's a kinda special kind of awful. No time limits for the floor is something, but like, not respecting that? Maybe implement a time cap, followed by a floor vote on "what are you talking about?"
100 members of Senate, let's respect the minority, so let's demand that 7/16 says "thumbs up, keep talking" and it's fine, give the senator 5 more minutes. Doesn't quite work with 100 since we don't like the metric here in the US, but it would be 57 senators saying "wut?" versus 44 senators saying "continue". Correct me if I got that fraction wrong.
But the filibuster, as it stands, is a really small idea with the sole purpose of not facing up to any issue. It is really worth asking, what can the filibuster protect? I would wipe the filibuster out, but to do it I'd put the responsibility upon the rest of the senate to actually stick it out to continue the, well, it would still be a filibuster, but you know. If you can't get 44 senators to approve the filibuster every 5 minutes, no special bathroom breaks, no recess, even if it's been 6 hours, eat ass, it's somebody else's turn at the floor. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:39, 20 March 2021 (UTC)
I like the filibuster in theory, but the risk to the legislative branch has become dire: every time one of these McConnell-esque “just say no” moments (here undefined as a nebulous period of partisan gridlock in protest of the incumbent president) happens they cede de facto authority to the presidency. Congress has already given up its constitutional power to declare war (I’ve heard they’re going to try to wrest it back this year), if at any point they lose the power of the purse to executive orders or the Senate becomes unworkable we’ll be over the Rubicon. Artificius (talk) 20:01, 20 March 2021 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I like how the filibuster was described to me in grade school (preserving minority rights to extract compromise), but that's not how it has ever worked. It's always been about preserving the rights of the rich and empowered over the popular will, preserving the rights of slave owners, and preserving white nationalism. As Lawrence Tribe quoted Alexander Hamilton on the filibuster: "[I]ts real operation is to destroy the energy of the government and to substitute the pleasure, caprice, or artifices of an insignificant, turbulent, or corrupt junto, to the regular deliberations and decisions of a respectable majority." Bongolian (talk) 17:12, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

"Americans need to actually suffer the disastrous policies of the GOP if they are ever to reject them"
Same could be said about any brain-tumor induced policy though. New Yorkers got so fed up with DeBlasio's bail reform that it was effectively scrapped entirely after just a few months.
...Anyhoo. As much as I'd like the filibuster to end, well, remember that every tool you have or don't have will always be available or unavailable to your opponents. We were here before; the Dems worked their asses off to reduce the power of the filibuster during the Obama administration, but were so delusional about Obama's tenure that they simply couldn't believe people would vote in both Trump and a swarm of the nastiest Republicritters to ever crawl out from under a rock. In 4 years, Biden may not be President, and Congress may be Republican. Do you, or do you not want the filibuster in this case? CorruptUser 16:24, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
I think that "Americans need to actually suffer the disastrous policies of the GOP" implies that they do want (or at least would be fine with) having no filibuster in the case you describe. Personally, I suspect that getting rid of the filibuster is likely to lead to laws being treated like executive orders are currently: every time control changes hands things get rolled back and replaced. In that case, laws that require long-term enforcement to have a substantial effect might not accomplish much, and I'm not informed enough to predict which party stands to benefit more from such a situation. Arguably, the fact that nothing gets done with the filibuster in place does indicate that it encourages stability, and that has some benefits, but its not clear to me that those benefits outweigh the costs. In any case, there do seem to be some arguments in favor of abolishing the filibuster that rest on democratic principles rather than overt partisanship. On the other hand, the idea that the GOP would assent to the framing of rallying the American people around back alley abortions reveals clear partisan thinking. My best guess, if the GOP successfully implemented their abortion policies and it led to a massive increase in back alley abortions, they would blame this on efforts to "defund the police," and rally the GOP base around increasing police funding and authority. (talk) 17:39, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Don't forget that it was the GOP who legalized abortion in the first place; Republicans don't really want to criminalize abortions so much as they want a bogeyman to wave around to scare people into voting for them. CorruptUser 17:46, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Fair enough, but if they could get an even better bogeyman, they might feel incentivized to deliver to their base on the abortion issue. Whether that would risk their command of the evangelical vote, I cannot say, although it does seem plausible. There's a point to be made that for things like, say, SCOTUS, having a de facto 60 vote threshold does insulate against pushing extreme partisan justices through to the court and having them squat there for the next 30 years. On the other hand, it's debatable how much that has actually done in the past, and as we've already learned the filibuster already isn't worth much when you can end it with a majority vote to change the rules, something both parties have already proved willing to do. Similarly, it isn't clear that the filibuster has actually produced bipartisanship, but this is attributable in part to the decisions of party leaders. The filibuster could in principle be used by the minority party to promote bipartisanship by applying pressure to negotiate, but the parties have made strategic decisions to instead use it as a means to obstruct completely. In any case, the filibuster is inherently unstable, because it is always a handicap to the party with the power to get rid of it, and it always presents the threat that if you keep it, the other party will get rid of it as soon as they have the opportunity. It's a bit like the prisoner's dilemma. (talk) 00:38, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Something that I thought of today was a few months back when the 5000+ page stimulus bill was brought to a vote just a few hours after being introduced. I have no idea how that kind of scheduling intersects with the filibuster, but it occurs to me that a similar kind of thing could be abused in its absence in a way that might not be possible right now. I may be concerned over nothing, but I'm wary of the idea of politicians pushing through bills that nobody has actually read or understands. (talk) 02:56, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
What is also interesting is a GOP congressional union strike total government shutdown. Even without the filibuster, scumbags continue to scumbag. https://omaha.com/news/lee-terry-says-he-cannot-handle-giving-up-own-paycheck-during-shutdown/article_06c17b2b-84ac-54f9-ad38-248b4ffbd423.html Power to the dorks in power, this is, at least in my memory, why the Republicans are worse as a majority power than the Democrats. They actually do this temper tantrum shit and call the people who aren't loyal to the message traitors.Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:15, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Not to say the Dem establishment that pulled all money and up and quit in Nevada isn't the same kind of dorkish petty bullshit. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:30, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

Shooting in Colorado tonight[edit]

https://www.cnn.com/us/live-news/colorado-king-soopers-shooting/index.html RIP Aaronmichael5 03:06, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

Fun fact: the USA is the only first-world nation to have such lenient gun laws. Even countries at war have similar gun laws to America. I seriously hope Biden fixes this.Jeh2ow Damn son! 12:08, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Presidents only sign legislation. I seriously hope the congress addresses our gun problems.UncleKrampus (talk) 17:56, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Presidents also propose and draft legislation, but this often goes no where or gets heavily rewritten in Congress. But, you're right, the reality is that Presidents can't "fix" anything: the more they try (the alleged 'bully pulpit'), the worse it gets. Take a look at the Green Lantern Theory of the presidency.[2] Bongolian (talk) 18:07, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Well, apparently he was born in Syria. But it looks like he was Incel or whatever. We'll see how this turns out... CorruptUser 18:19, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
It's a Constitutional issue in the US. Congress does not have that authority. Much of current gun regulation is unconstitutional by a straightforward reading of the text. The founders saw fit for private citizens to have warships with naval artillery, as well as high-capacity semi-automatic rifles (they're older than most people realize). And you should be careful about proposing that the government should ignore the Bill of Rights. Can you name any other first-world countries with freedom of speech? At any rate, the rationale behind gun control is questionable at best. In this case, guns are also a low-hanging fruit. Remove them as an easy option, and people may get creative. Explosives are used for such things elsewhere in the world. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 18:40, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Uh... what did I just read? CorruptUser 18:43, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
A prompt to examine actual causes and solutions to things like this shooting. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 18:47, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
It's darkly amusing to note that our favorite friend of Russian spies everywhere, the NRA, celebrated a judge striking down Boulder's ban on AR-15 style rifles last Tuesday on Twitter. Which, of course, were the weapon style of choice, again, for another mass shooting.
And to the BoN: To be honest, I actually would have much less problem if the 2nd Amendment truly literal. You can have your high powered military grade weapon, provided that you are an actual member of the armed forces (eg part of that "well regulated militia", an example of this sort of system would be Switzerland). Wouldn't stop everything, but it would certainly cut out the cases of people with poor mental health who are barely of the age to even buy a beer yet that decide to "solve their problems" by going pew-pew (this is the second twenty-one year old mass shooter in a row). Current gun culture in America is all about gun manufacturers exploiting the paranoid, which is great for the industry I suppose, but not so good for America's health. Contrast this to Swiss gun culture, where instead of paranoid delusions, gun ownership is more seen as a patriotic duty for national defense. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 19:01, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
But this guy was part of the Militia; all able-bodied male (and some female) citizens (and those who intend to become citizens) between 17 and 44 years old are members of the Militia.CorruptUser 19:12, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
As your link notes, the well regulated portion of the "militia" is the National Guard. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 20:04, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Who did the shootings? Right-wing extremists or incels? Anyone knows? 2A02:120B:C3FB:3B40:15D2:710F:8DD5:B97C (talk) 18:48, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
I have to say, it was impressive how many people's first impulse, upon seeing the news, was to scream bloody murder that this guy was obviously a white man. Ouch. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 21:56, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Because the shooter being a White dude fits their narrative, that's all. CorruptUser 22:14, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
one would think by now that any sane and reasonable person holds off on making any kind of pronouncements or statements about the perpetrators of these things and their possible motives or who they are even, until at least the dust has settled but you know, social media and 24hr news. charitably i'd say with lotsa of folk its just the way they process these tragedies, clouded by anger and sadness and requiring someone to blame, they jump to conclusions with their own 'usual suspects' to focus it all on. by the time they can be proved wrong, their prejudices would still be reinforced in their own minds. it will be rationalised as 'the sort thing they do though'. less charitably, there are people who will do all that but it not be the result of their emotions getting the better of them but be because everything bad in the world is because of 'them' and they are always looking for a tragedy like this to try and galvanise the public to really get their hate on. you dont even need to point any fingers. if you frame your speculation right you get the same result but not have to do any back tracking for blaming the wrong people. AMassiveGay (talk) 23:22, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
i wonder though how many people, on hearing of a shooting or bombing, dont immediately think to blame their enemies but hope it wasnt one of 'us'? AMassiveGay (talk) 23:28, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
The most "darkly amusing" domestic terrorism, at least as far as the "let's play the outrage at terrorism stereotypes", has to go to the Boston Marathon bombing. Where the perpetrator was both Islamic. And a White Dude. Now, *both* sides can get outraged! (Or confused.) While Islam and the far-right racist / incel crowd do tend to have higher incident counts of terrorism / mass shootings in the US, mass shootings and terrorism have tons of motives, including sometimes no real motive at all. For this incident, I will say so far the funniest jump-to-the-left/step-to-the-right routine I've seen so far online comes from the Breitbart commentary section, whose "MUSLIM!!!" shrieks to this incident fit oh so well with the whataboutism / "mainstream media's gonna blame TRUMP!" type reaction to the (/s) nice Christian Atlanta boy (/s) that shot up Atlanta spas a couple weeks back. So far it seems that paranoia / schizo behavior more than anything religious explain Mr. Alissa, at the moment. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 23:56, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Also, bonus points to the people losing their shit over the deceptively edited video of the Atlanta police officer describing the shooter. At the very minimum, if you want to freak out over someone answering a question at a press conference you should actually play the question too; amazing how many people fell for that. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 03:51, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
All trolling aside, I agree with the troll (or what its agenda was a facsimile of, assuming the IP was a troll). The only way to approach meaningful gun reform is through a constitutional amendment that annuls or addresses number 2. I don’t pay attention often enough to have an informed opinion because shootings are part of the background noise of my life (a colleague was caught in a Wal-Mart and had to evacuate him and his daughter out an emergency exit about three years ago, in Colorado, my home), but I’ve seen the supreme court rulings often enough to believe nothing will happen until Congress passes an annulling amendment. All other legislation is palliative or a lie until number 2 is addressed (or shit gets *weird* enough that American government is sidestepped by technology or something like that [A fresh hell of corporate overlords dictating their own policies in the corpse of a superpower]). Artificius (talk) 02:47, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
Your first paragraph was a hasty declaration and probably unneeded. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 17:55, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
Dudes, that gleeful "Not a white person" attitude is specifically reactionary and gross. If you honestly don't like gun violence, you wouldn't racialize it. I have a solid opinion, that guns in America need to be regulated and registered because we need to know who has them and what they intend to use them fore. A gun club, would be the locality, officially filed, and not that difficult to file for even as an individual. I do recognize that it's kind of a "must own property" problem, but being subject to gun storage regulations is really different from saying you REALLY gotta stop deifying an inalienable and unregulated right to own a gun as something that should be regulated by personal responsibility. It's romantic, but it's killing people, and I really don't want to see people get killed just because we all have a disputed right to a really efficient "kill the thing you point it at" tool. Are you responsible for your kid getting a hold of your gun? YES, how the fuck did you just have a gun laying around? Why the fuck does anybody who has no criminal record who wants a gun just get to have one and we don't know where it is? I'm a little emotionally raw on this subject, but my opinion hasn't changed. All guns, ALL GUNS, registered to gun clubs. Nothing difficult, just file your home as a gun club if you're scared of the government taking your guns. Gun tax, I'm not worried about it, you want to have a gun, right? A kid shouldn't be able to steal their parents' gun and do harm with it without some, I don't know, investigation into how the kid got the gun, and nobody should be able to just get an AR-15 without gun club membership and some investigation of what that asshole was doing holding that AR-15. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:38, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
I believe in the Media Contagion Theory. Gun violence happen because the media glamourizes gun violence. People get the idea of mass shootings from the media coverage, the same as all the coverage in the EU of the Nice truck massacre resulted in, all of a sudden, a lot more truck attacks. If we really want to stop gun violence, stop glamourizing it on TV. Show heroes like McGuyver, who refuses to use guns but is awesome from his genius alone. Show more Batman, the superhero that in spite of famously having no superpowers whatsoever (beyond super-money), refuses to use guns. You can still have gun violence in movies, but make it clear how bad it is.
As for gun rights, I view owning a gun as just as much a right as owning a car, and should have the same requirements. I.e., register it with the state, inspection, taxes, and you need to pass a basic test to use one. CorruptUser 04:31, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

The time I saw a kid almost get crushed to death[edit]

Time to set the wayback machine to about 2001. I was in a special needs class due to having mild Autism (my mental illness diagnosis was not till 2010). Now one day a kid in the class had a major meltdown and was running around and being violent. The special needs workers did not actually try to calm him down. Then said kid got to a heavy file cabinet and tipped it over. That was when one of the workers actually did anything. The special needs worker could barely hold up the cabinet but the kid got out.

Now the cabinet was merely a foot above the kid. Had the worker not reached the cabinet in time, the kid would either be dead or severely injured plus the parents of the child would be able to file a lawsuit against the school. Witnessing that was a truly horrifying experience. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 01:07, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

I worked daycare my senior year of high school. We were a little understaffed, but I was 19 my senior year because I went to special first grade, then went to first grade again. I got all my first aid and child CPR certifications, so that meant I could watch 10 preschoolers by my 19 year old self. Worst gamble of my life, I had crushes on 3 girls that worked there, all of them went military wife. NEVER WORK CHURCH DAYCARE FOR BABES they think you're cute but they don't care about you and you will not have a second to care about them. I was not prepared, I had no younger siblings and no family in town with kids. I did my absolute best to be a good preschool teacher and schoolage babysitter, I really did. I got my nose broken one time, and literally counted kids and asked the other teacher if they could take the extra numbers while I went to the bathroom to stop bleeding, had an administrator come and ask me about my last tetanus shot because even a scrape could cause tetanus, and I'm like "No, the bleeding is from inside my nose, pretty sure I just separated the bone and cartilage, nothing broke the skin." I sneezed blood for like a month, but I was back on that playground in like 5 minutes. Like, it was THE most stressful job, I had so many kids to watch at all times. I had violent kids, and I had parents who got really mad at me because I told them their kids were being violent and I had parents who got really mad at me because I couldn't always stop a kid from being violent to their kid. IT IS HARD TO TAKE CARE OF OTHER PEOPLES' KIDS. Saving a kid from getting crushed under a file cabinet sounds like good reaction time to me.Gol Sarnitt (talk) 05:16, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
I know that's a formative memory for you, I'm not trying to invalidate it. When I worked daycare I really thought a lot of ways other teachers treated the kids when they misbehaved was dumb. I had one very autistic kid. He hated the credits of a movie, shouted that it was over and ran and turned the lights on. Not guessing whether he was autistic or not, like, think Sia's bullshit, but really a little kid and I don't want to speak for an autistic 8 year old. Now, I kinda wish I could have explained to him how the credits worked and if you liked a song in the movie you can see what it's called at the end of the credits, but that would be a big concept for an 8 year old and I was 19, so, Chutes and Ladders and "that's ok, I get it, but c'mon, we're doing whatever now" was the best I could do. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:10, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

Dealing with spooky mind-control rays[edit]

To those suffering from the work of omnipresent and near-omniscient adversaries, as evidenced by even the most banal forms of emotional upheaval and disagreement between people, I have the magical solution.

I would like to share it with you, for, as a resource and community trying to embody refined reasoning, RationalWiki is no doubt a prime target of their attacks. For as we all know, those who know too much are a threat to those who wish to control the minds of others.

The solution is simple: Knowledge magically protects from such dangers. The moment you have been duly informed, salvation from the spooky ills which besiege you has been delivered, whether you know believe it or not.

And so, without further ado...

Q: Did aliens do anything to create emotional turmoil here?

A: They always do.

—Cassiopaean channeling, August 8, 1994

--ApooftGnegiol (talk) 08:15, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

What about Humanism?[edit]

Humanism is "an outlook or system of thought attaching prime importance to human rather than divine or supernatural matters." From some modern critics: "a system of thought criticized as being centered on the notion of the rational, autonomous self and ignoring the unintegrated and conditioned nature of the individual." This might be seen as a mutated form of Christianity, exemplified by various forms of Unitarianism, some of which do away with Christ as a deity altogether. There is a kind of "atheism plus" ethos to this wiki, where most folks seem to be atheistic while professing definite social justice criteria in their writing. Why not come out and say, "We are Humanists?" It should be clear to most users that the RW ethos is perfectly amenable to subordinating scientific realism ( determinism) to the consequences of existentialism, that, is the development of the individual as a free agent capable of determining their path in life through the application of free will. UncleKrampus (talk) 18:58, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

While most humanists are atheists certainly not all of them are (there are Christian humanists). And it is most definitely not the case that all atheists are humanists or even that all secular, rationalist atheists are humanists. Being passionate about justice and equality doesn't make you automatically a humanist either (it's just sort-of one part of it and not even entirely so). I would say that a lot of recent content on the site fits in well with some aspects of humanism, and that I myself am a member of two humanist organisations and I believe that humanism is one of the most praiseworthy ideologies there are...but I would not label rationalwiki as a humanist site by any means. There are some people here who are most certainly not humanists and while we may make some jokes about God here and there I don't believe that secularism is a particular driving force behind the majority of the content here. I'd say this site is in the ball park of humanism.
Humanism being a mutated form of Christianity is one of the more bizarre arguments I have ever heard. That is nonsense. I also don't know why you are throwing free will and existentialism into the mix. It actually sounds just like your own idiosyncratic interpretation of humanism...an unnecessary extra set of qualities that humanism doesn't have. It is actually extremely simple. Contemporary humanism embraces: secularism, rationalism/scientific-explanations and human-dignity (rights/fairness/equality). You don't need really to say much more than that. ShabiDOO 21:30, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
I thought you would be the one to reply Shabidoo. Good for you. Petrarch, reputed to be the founder of Humanism, was of course, a Christian, as were most Renaissance Humanists. Most, if not all intellectual movements of that period were consequences of or reactions to Christian scholasticism. So, no, not my idiosyncratic idea. Although, I would not reject your notion of the independence of the basic schema. Not entirely my point, however. Without notions of free will, one falls into deterministic patterns that progressivism must reject. The existentialist does not require you to be progressive, true. However the progressive must hold with existentialism to have courage of their convictions in the modern world.UncleKrampus (talk) 22:11, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
What humanism is has radically changed over the last 500 years. Humanism began as a movement which was a notable "departure" from Christian intellectualism at the time including a strong interest in pre-Christian ideas/stories/mythology so I don't know what you are talking about. In a sense literally everything in the West can be traced back to something Christian because for a long time all of Europe was Christian. But when a movement is actually a counter-reaction or departure from something I think its silly to consider it a "mutation" of that thing. Contemporary humanism is a universe apart from 16th century humanism so why don't we stick to contemporary humanism. If by free will you mean free from supernatural interference then I guess what you are saying makes sense. But if you mean the modern free will debate you can be a Sam Harris fan (who is a humanist) who believes free will is an illusion or a Daniel Dennet fan (also humanist) who thinks combatibalism allows free-will in a deterministic universe. So...no...I don't see how free will in the modern debate has anything to do with humanism. Humanism is not inherently an "existentialist" ideology at all. Humanism doesn't dwell on many existentialist ideas like angst, being doomed to choose, the absurdity of life or the importance of authenticity etc. Certainly finding/creating meaning is a recurring topic but that is one of the only frequent themes they have in common. ShabiDOO 22:39, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
Humanism is existentialist in the strictly literal, philosophical sense, in that it draws meaning and moral value from what exists(specifically humanity, I guess), as classically opposed to transcendental philosophies which suppose a framework of meaning then try and cram existence into it sideways hoping it fits. Nonetheless, even with that framing I have little hope of discerning what the fuck Krampus is trying to say. I mean, obviously I'm existentialist as hell, and have doubts that even truly transcandental-seeming concepts like math or logic exist at some non-material level, so I'm not gonna disagree with his final sentence, but the rest of it makes little sense to me. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 01:31, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
I was referring to existentialism re: Kierkegard, Sartre, Camus, Nietzsche etc. Some of their ideas overlap with the humanist sphere (sometimes big overlap) but their primary questions and goals are hardly the same. I'd also argue that 20th century existentialism was full of diverse thinkers and is a lot harder to pin down. Meanwhile contemporary humanism is a whole lot easier to define and fall fairly easily into the three concepts I mentioned above. As for Krampus making sense...I agree very much Ikanreed that I am having a hard time understanding it myself. A humanist simply encourages secularism, rationalism and human dignity/thriving. Christianity conflicts heavily with secularism, is ambiguous (though often quite aggressive) towards rationalism and I'd argue Christians give less shit about human dignity than the dignity of their holy book, crucified deity and power structures. How you could call Humanism a warped version of Christianity is beyond my understanding. Once again...humanists promote secularism, rationality and human dignity/thriving. Existentialists anguish over the absurdity of the human condition, the struggle for meaning and authenticity. Yes there is overlap...but the two are hardly interchangeable. ShabiDOO 01:59, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
Ikanreed is right: I am very hard to understand, and you are not the first ones to recognize that fact.Existentialism isn't defined exclusively by the eccentricities of French philosophy. It is the belief that your personal world is of your own making. I refer to the moral postures and not complex ideologies elaborated by great literary talents. To believe otherwise suggests outcomes that conflate progress with the inevitable. If when we consider these ideas we find contradictions, it is because there are contradictions, no matter how we formulate ideas about freedom and justice. ( I think Kant talked about antimonies and maybe he had it right.) UncleKrampus (talk) 02:08, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
Kierkegaard and Nietzsche were Danish and German and their writings were very different from Sartre and Camus (whose writings were also different) and apart from Nietzsche I wouldn't call them eccentrics. Existentialism cannot be reduced to "the belief that your personal world is of your own making". That is absurdly hyper simplifying it. I cannot be sure...but I kind of get the idea that you are informed about Humanism and Existentialism through one paragraph summaries rather than an even brief outline of them let alone reading a single original text by any existentialist or humanist writer. ShabiDOO 11:01, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
In fact I'd say that characterization is more accurate of transcendentalists, whose obsessions with souls, gods, and free will all tend to put the self in a position above the world that self resides in. In general, existentialism forces you to contend with what is. And what you believe is, at best, something you do to frame those things that exist whether you like it or not. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:21, 24 March 2021 (UTC)

A little problem with Anti-Mask logic (okay, there are mountains of problems)[edit]

I commonly hear the excuse from Anti-Maskers who also refuse the vaccine

My immune system is my vaccine

Yet somehow the same said immune system can't protect you from some bacteria that could possibly grow on the mask. So how is it the immune system can easily face off against a virus that is completely new yet it can't fight bacteria on a mask that came directly from you? I find that a tad bit confusing. Then again, if something does not fit the predetermined conclusion of the anti-science crowd then it is automatically wrong. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 20:14, 23 March 2021 (UTC)

The argument they make changes based on the immediate context, just like every conspiracy theory out there. The same logic allows Sidney Powell to simultaneously believe the kraken was an indestructible truth meteor made of pure facts, and also that her assertions are not factual and that no reasonable person would ever believe her. It's like they want to have their cake, and eat it too, and have it also be whatever they need to excuse their great carelessness. Semipenultimate (talk) 21:02, 23 March 2021 (UTC)
@Semipenultimate Are vaccine conspiracy theories something you know a lot about? Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 03:11, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
As an idle dilettante, over several decades, I've absorbed a lot of wingnut arguments over vaccination and disease, and their misunderstanding regarding both. On the face of it, a huge conspiracy pushing a substance a person only takes once is asinine compared to Actual Reality, where maintenance drugs taken daily and medicine for those in extremis such as cancer are where the actual money gets made. This is why they focus on total bullshit like microchips, to add some long-term boogeyman you focus on more than the fact that this is Underpants Gnome logic. Semipenultimate (talk) 15:48, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
Also the thought that you need a microchip to be indelibly marked ignores fingerprints, DNA evidence, blood typing, facial recognition, search patterns, your goddamn CELL PHONE... Semipenultimate (talk) 15:48, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
Anti-maskers fall into two categories. Category 1 are normal people who just have concerns (especially due to the confusion at the start of the pandemic) as they do not fully understand the science behind it - to this group, some explanation and convincing will help them understand. Category 2 are reckless nuts; no amount of convincing will help - it's as good as banging your head on a tree. MeowPurr 03:26, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
@Meow I've seen you discuss anti-vaccine ideas in Indonesia above, I was wondering what you think about @CorruptUser's recent edit to the page on the anti-vaccination movement. Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 03:31, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
@Nebuchadnezzar7658 Well, he's just documenting some more anti-vax wingnuttery. Nothing much to say about that. MeowPurr 04:19, 24 March 2021 (UTC)

Part of the reason people don't wear masks is because they are ignorant.

There needs to be more competition in terms of schooling. In Belgium, the money follows the student and they can go to a private or public school (Maybe they allow home schooling too). Too many public schools are failing to educate people properly.Whitepine (talk) 08:32, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

Flags of Convenience (intl shipping)[edit]

With a massive cargo ship blocking the Suez, I think it's time world leaders stop ignoring the cause; flags of convenience. Basically, every country has strict rules regarding ships, wages, etc, with the exceptions of Liberia and Panama. As a result, nearly every major cargo ship is registered with these two countries. There's no standards to speak of, so long as the ship isn't underwater it'll pass inspection. Thus, a huge 20,000 container cargo ship was so poorly maintained that it lost power and ran aground in the Suez. The current result is going to be a hiccup in the supply chain for Europe and China, but the ship might not be freed soon; the longer it's there, the more disastrous this is for the world economy. This is not a freak accident, it's a warning of things to come. What happens when the container ship loses power and is on a collision course with a major bridge? At 200,000 tons travelling at 45 knots, crashes are measured in tons of TNT. We have to stop allowing these ships into our ports, or something much worse than "the Suez canal is blocked" will happen. The EU needs to put its foot down and say that any ships docking at one of its ports must be registered with a country that the ship regularly docks at. If the ship docks 250 times in the past 5 years and never once in Panama, sorry, no, the "Panama registered" ship is not allowed to dock in the EU. CorruptUser 15:16, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

Oh for fuck's sake. The operation to free it is likely to take weeks. CorruptUser 19:50, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

Israel election[edit]

Looks like nobody won, since Netanyahu can't get 61 seats right now, and the opposition have no hope. The problem is that a bunch of far-right wackos did really well, meaning that they'll likely have a say in whatever government Netanyahu can form. Said far-right wackos want to segregate maternity wards and have Israel governed by religious law. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 00:27, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

On a related note, China wants to mediate peace talks between Israel and Palestine. With the dang right wing government I doubt that China mediating the talks will change anything. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 00:54, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Peace talks will go nowhere because Israel has everything they could want under the Oslo Accords right now. Palestine has zero leverage. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 05:18, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Said far-right wackos won't be enough to get him a majority - the only effective result is that Gantz is destroyed. All depends on Lieberman now, but the only viable option for him is to ally with Netanyahu - there's simply no alternative. If he refuses and they hold a fifth election, then... CathedralOfTrier Skeleton.JPG MeowPurr 06:18, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
As for China, they just badly want Israel as an ally. I'd hate to see Israel allying with a regime that looks very similar to a little thing in the 1930s, so I hope that falls through. MeowPurr 06:29, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Also upon further reflection, this fiasco just makes the international Jewish conspiracy even more hilariously absurd. Israel can’t get 61 politicians to agree to govern, but they supposedly secretly rule the world. Lmaooo. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 07:16, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
The big surprise in the election apparently was that a Islamist party (Islamic Movement in Israel) won 5 seats in Parliament, pushing out all the more moderate Islamic parties. The Islamic Movement has said that they'll talk to any other parties as long as they offer a seat in Parliament. The upshot of that is that Netanyahu could be forced to choose between saving his own neck (he could be banned from running again if he's not chosen as PM) and trying to cobble together a coalition of extremists (Kahanist and overtly racist Jewish supremacist parties along with the Islamist party). Bongolian (talk) 07:27, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
It looks now like Netanyhu has lost unless his opposition doesn't hold together. Bongolian (talk) 01:37, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
But will they? I don't see any chance of that; the opposition is a rabble of different parties that don't agree on anything. Lieberman is the only wild horse, and his only options are to ally with Netanyahu or become neutral as usual and trigger a fifth election. MeowPurr 01:46, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
But for a islamist party, it's pretty "moderate", because they support also a two-state solution. Yes, they're homophobic, but at least they're not like Hamas, which wants (or more like tried) to destroy Israel. Kevs Ping! 12:56, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

The Tin Foil Clowns are calling the Boulder shooting a (wait for it...) false flag operation.[edit]

SIGH... I really shouldn't be surprised by this. But yes folks, the conspiracy theorists are already calling it a false flag operation.

Okay, am I missing something here, or is staging an entire faked shooting completely pointless? The idea here is that these shootings are staged so that politicians can call for gun control. Okay, let's say that's true and bad politicians (presumably democrats) want to do this. Is it really necessary to go through all the time and effort to FAKE an entire shooting? Why not just hire a guy to go in there and commit a real shooting? Allegedly these are the same politicians who run pedophile rings and satanically sacrifice children and a bunch of other stuff so it's not like they wouldn't be willing. And plus, now here's where the REAL logic lies so try not to hurt your brain here: wouldn't that be a LOT safer and less likely to get exposed than hiring a bunch of crisis actors and faking victims names inside a PUBLIC setting like a grocery store? Seems to me like there's a bit of a plot hole in that plot, so to speak. Aaronmichael5 18:35, March 25 2021 (UTC)

Clowns? In tin foil?! THE ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT IS UPON US ALL!! Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 18:53, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
But srsly, would a clown wearing tinfoil be more likely to get struck by lightning in a thunderstorm? Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 18:54, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
I don't think tinfoil is the best conductor of electricity, so probably not. Could be wrong though. CorruptUser 18:58, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Calm down. Qanon people are evil trolls. They can't believe any of the shit they say, but they love to say nasty, disreputable things about progressive America.Forget themUncleKrampus (talk) 19:18, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
So far this sort of theory seems like "fringe of the fringe" to me (eg random Facebook and Telegram crapola). The story doesn't seem to have made more "well known" false flag piddlers like Infowars yet. Even on 8Kun there is dissent among the conspiracy theorists and racists these days, with some of them realizing the Watkins QAnon grift in their own special way. One half wonders if the QAnon crowd will eventually whittle itself down to a bunch of hired Russian disinformation goonsWikipedia racing to out-shitpost each other. Unfortunately, as judged by r/QAnonCasualties, it seems there are still stories of people still trapped in the cult that believe this sort of shit. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 19:26, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Given the number of 'mass shootings' in the US (even allowing for 'feuds, criminal activities where guns were used, person shooting ex-lover with latter's present lover, persons with psychological issues/substance abuse issues using a gun' and suchlike - which will probably collectively account for a fraction of all such events) there would have to be a plan and joined up thinking/activities (including 'a steady drumbeat of rhetoric and newspaper etc articles' to encourage 'the honest, hard-working average guy/voter' to think that some form of gun control would be A Good Thing ('Next time it could be your grocery store, your kids' school...') by using such staged shootings.
In the UK even the Countryside Alliance promotes safe shooting; while the only limit on crossbow ownership is being over 18 (the top speed for crossbow bolts is 'bullet train speeds'). Anna Livia (talk) 15:39, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

Stories from Kansas: Senate majority leader flees from cops[edit]

In today's issue of "Duce is proud to be a Kansan", our state Senate majority leader Gene Suellentrop got arrested last week for getting pulled over for DUI and then fleeing from the cops by driving the wrong way up a divided highway (this was less than a mile from my apartment lmao). Then a judge released him because the cops didn't do the paperwork right. Story here. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 23:08, 22 March 2021 (UTC)

I'm sure it was a total accident the cops fucked up the paperwork they do a billion times a year. Revolverman (talk) 23:16, 22 March 2021 (UTC)
Just, thank God he didn't hit the turnpike, or somehow we'd all be paying for it. I did the bad thing, I got pulled over on the interstate for drunk driving and I literally went to jail and got my car impounded. Nobody released me, I had to call my mom and my bank, since you actually can't post your own bail in my county. I really doubt the guy had to dress out either. Being said, Kansas has some pretty strict laws around alcohol already, but I have family there and the Three-two Flu is like the cutest term for a hangover I've ever heard. Drunk driving is the bad thing, I fully admit to my problem behavior. I literally saw the aftermath of an accident while illegally driving a moving van without a license. I was sober as a judge. I had a blow n go permit, but it was only to drive a car with an interlock (breathalyzer) installed, I do not fuck around driving and I chose to fuck around driving for one day to move my shit, and I saw a kid dying in the street. A kid who went to my high school, who was in a car hit by a drunk driver who fled the scene. Drunk drivers who flee the scene, GO FUCK YOURSELVES. Like, to do the bad thing and then to run, absolutely the worst way to get in trouble for the bad thing. For ANYBODY else, it's bad, you'll get through it, bud damn, sometimes drunk drivers kill kids, like, really really, it's only a numbers game that I saw this kid dead in the street. Don't play that numbers game. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:13, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
But this specifically is what pisses me off about midwestern leadership. It's not like nobody is fucking up, it's about owning up to fucking up, living through the consequences is what is supposed to be impressive, it's the fucking standard. Paying for impound fees and court fees and getting to every probation meeting wasn't easy, but I could do it. if I didn't do it, I went back to jail. Not every person I met who was trying to do the same thing I was doing could meet all those parameters. Just getting off because it was kind of a mistake is kind of a luxury. Being able to wire my mom my own bail money and show up to work the next day and then get my car out of impound with my dad, who took me to get a photo ID at Sam's Club, I consider all of that a luxury. The rules I had to follow, I followed. I couldn't get my car out of impound without photo ID, but the police took my license, and I was on the hook for impound fees. Consider anyone who can't get a photo ID after their license has been confiscated. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 06:38, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

Progress on our recently-created article demotion vote page[edit]

I've just gone and added a couple shortcuts, added a link to RW:BRAIN on the project page nav menu, and changed the case for "Demotion" in the title to lowercase for consistency reasons- as well as changing all mentions of the old name. Forgive me for polluting RecentChanges by forgetting to keep Ninja mode on when I did this decapitalization spree. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 20:01, 25 March 2021 (UTC)

Yeah it's a headache. Thanks for your help with this...CorruptUser 20:21, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Blegh, been making a mess of the template. Will back off it for now... CorruptUser 20:41, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Feel free to fix my preloader prototype in my sandbox (the latter link in my sig), whose formatting seems to be failing. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 20:44, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
[EC]I’ve created {{demote2}}, a quick copy/paste of {{afd2}}. Will need to be incorporated into the {{demote}} template in a similar way but I’ll hold off doing that for now. Do we want the two to look exactly the same? Christopher (talk) 20:45, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
That's part of it. Just what do we want the page to look like? What do we want our template to say? CorruptUser 20:46, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
What’s not working about your preloader? It’s hard to tell as it’s a template that’s meant to be substituted. Christopher (talk) 20:53, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
When I try clicking the "preload" link, it just loads a blank edit screen for the AfDem, without the "Demote", "Status quo", "Promote", or "Goat" sections or the reason parameter. I don't know what gives; I took such care... --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 00:09, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Because no one’s yet made an equivalent to {{Article for deletion discussion starter}}. Christopher (talk) 00:16, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
I've just gone and done it. --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 00:26, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Thanks all! I think our AfDem page is ready-ish. Still some work to do, want to figure out how to auto-populate the new page...CorruptUser 03:29, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

I copied another template we were missing, articles for demotion now has all the same functionality as articles for deletion. Christopher (talk) 20:17, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

Spoke too soon, should be true now. We’ll end up running into the same issue of multiple AfDs at some point. Christopher (talk) 20:29, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Added all but Renewables and Transphobia to the page, kinda agree with the criticism. Renewable Energy does need a lot more cites. Anyone want to slap a bunch of [citation needed] on everything? Because Renewables is really an important thing IMHO. CorruptUser 00:45, 27 March 2021 (UTC)


Try to answer these individually first and then perhaps explain the greater logic:

  1. Should police put extra effort into investigating a grizzly murder-rape than say...an inter-mafia murder?
  2. Should police put extra effort into investigating the murder of an elected politician?
  3. Should police prioritise the murder investigation of a President/Prime-Minister over the murder of say five average civilians?
  4. Should police put extra effort into investigating the murder of a fellow police officer?

ShabiDOO 15:40, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

the easy answer is that the status of the victim should not effect the priority the police place on its investigation. beyond that there may be be procedural reasons why one crime is prioritised over another where the time frame in following up leads might be finite, but i guess some crimes will be more high profile than others and have political pressure to prioritise one over an other. AMassiveGay (talk) 16:04, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
  1. The inter-mafia murder is just criminals killing criminals, the average person doesn't really care. The murder rape scares people more.
  2. Ok this and the next are the same one. Basically, the politician is not just a high profile case, but one that is basically a symbol. If a politician can be killed without the crime being solved, then it sends a very bad signal to everyone else that their crimes can't be solved.
  3. See above
  4. No one will trust the police if they can't even protect themselves. Would you trust a fire department that had their fire station burn to the ground?
Note that all these aren't about "justice" and "fairness", but rather about symbols. Never underestimate the importance of the story you tell. -Cory (on a diff compy)— Unsigned, by: 2603:7000:E40:66:E57E:4F49:C69:20E4 / talk
Cory you gave a fairly logical explanation of why this happens but I don't know if you think this should happen. ShabiDOO 16:28, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Don't know if it should, but there's a strong argument.
Let me ask you a question instead. Should the police put extra effort into solving a murder that's clearly a hate crime over, say, an inter-mafia murder? CorruptUser 16:34, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
dunno about inter-mafia crime but gang violence is incredibly high profile crimes often involving kids killing other kids. it gets a very priority irl AMassiveGay (talk) 16:39, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
A factor to be considered - the proportion of murders where the murderer is not initially known; and the proportion of these crimes which are likely to be followed by other violence (including unrest etc). Anna Livia (talk) 17:04, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
The concept of "extra effort" is just vague enough to lead one away from a suitable reply. I prefer "sufficient effort." The amount of effort a police force applies to investigating a crime is, I believe, a matter of statistical averaging. (1) If a mafia actor gets killed, the cops are likely to apply a token investigation for the obvious reasons. One can argue over their true motivations, but effective use of resources comes to mind immediately. A horrible murder rape should definitely receive sufficient resources for adequate investigation. This is the type of crime the resolution of which gets politicians elected. (2) Likewise the killing of any public official. The public would not wish to tolerate mysterious murders of important people. (3) When it comes to the assassination of any head of state, now you are in headless chicken mode and there is hardly any limit to the investigations. It is equivalent to an act of war. (4) When a cop is killed, there is an official obligation to keep the investigation open until situation is resolved, and one might expect such an inquiry to be excessive.UncleKrampus (talk) 17:39, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
The UK uses a category system for murders: Cat A, Cat B, Cat C (and a Cat A+ but it's real rare). Cat A gets more time, resources, money, etc allocated to it than a Cat B, which gets more than a Cat C. Cat A is a big high profile murder where the murderer is unknown, or there's a lot of media interest, or the crime itself was particularly high profile (like a shooting in public), and there is potentially an ongoing risk to the public. Cat B are murders where the murderer is unknown, the murder itself is relatively low profile, there's no ongoing risk to the public, and there's no need to throw extra resources at it to secure evidence (i.e. you don't need to shut down and secure an entire road to search for clues). Cat C is low profile murder, no ongoing risk to the public, and you know (or strongly suspect) who the murderer is - maybe they're even in custody. Cat A+ is like a Super Cat A where public and media interest is massive and you need even more resources just to handle that - like a celebrity or politician or someone is heavily involved, or for whatever reason the story just goes massive. There are other things that can affect it but those are the major things. I can't figure out how the hell to link to it because whenever I click the link it's just downloading the PDF, but if you google "UK Category A murder", there's a result from Devon & Cornwall police that goes into it. X Stickman (talk) 17:48, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
You right-click the link, and the browser should give you the option to "Copy Link Location" or some such. Devon and Cornwall Police Nowhere Man (talk) 18:19, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
ikanreed's social consequentialist assessment
  1. Instinct tells people to worry more over #1, due to the suffering and presumed innocence of the victim, but persistent organized crime tends to create way worse downstream effects than even the worst sadist going unpunished once.
  2. The intuitive answer is "yes, worry more about the politician", the intuitive response is "all people is equal", but I think serious analysis says "Societies that allow murder of elected politicians become overcome with byzantine politics from factions that seeking their own empowerment. That corruption destroys far more lives"
  3. This just scales up the concerns in the previous statement by an order of magnitude but isn't a fundamentally different question.
  4. Only good cop is a... Let's just pretend I was going to say "not tribalistic one" ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 18:37, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
And if all the cops died, or retired or went into different careers, there'd be a fuckton more murders and such. The "microaggression and moral culture" paper pretty much explains exactly what happens when dispute resolution leaves the domain of cops or other external forces and instead is a "take matters into your own hands" sort of justice, and what kind of culture and value system exists as a result. SockPup (talk) 19:02, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
I'm not sure how to answer questions 1-3 myself. I would say that the attention given to murder investigations (assuming limited resources) should probably be focused less on say "if they were famous or the victim of a hate crime" and more on those who are likely to murder again or based on the severity of the offence (number of victims or if it were premeditated vs. manslaughter etc). I'm sure it is an insanely difficult job to decide how resources are distributed. What I am uncomfortable with is the automatic assumption and an immediate huge chunk of resources are given just because the victim was famous or another cop. ShabiDOO 15:56, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Well, there is the problem of media feedback: reporters will keep asking about the murder of famous people. The popular expectation is that the situation will be resolved. It can be attributed to a consequence of popular opinion. Hard to fight that. When it comes to the police, homicides are statistically so rare that one can not expect a normal response. For example, In 2019 there were almost 700, 000 full-time law enforcement officers. During the same period, there were 89 police homicides. Compare this with annual fatalities from lightening strikes: 49. One cannot expect to predict what people will do in such cases.UncleKrampus (talk) 18:25, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

Focus on number 4[edit]

I am particularly concerned with the idea that the police may dedicate and excessive amount of time and resources to the murder of one of their own. I can understand a somewhat higher level of concern, but I do believe that a tacit tolerance of diverting significant resources to a "let's leave no stone unturned for one of our own" could be as problematic as nepotism or corruption in politics, the civil service, charities or NGOs. I'm also concerned that overzealous investigations into a "one of our own murder" or even a politician can lead to sloppy, bad or even outright dirty police work. ShabiDOO 19:46, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

I think there's a better way to approach the problem. Somebody else pointed out the issue that if murders of police are not resolved, this reflects badly on the police, making them seem incompetent. On the other hand, the concern over this creates a perverse incentive to just arrest somebody, anybody to save face. I think there are really two questions you are asking. First, should the police devote extra resources to investigating a murder of a police officer? Yes seems like a credible response: the police are tasked with public safety (I'll bracket the issue of their effectiveness), and if they cannot solve murders of police, then this reflects poorly on their ability to do their jobs, and could undermine public trust, or encourage the murderer to strike again, or inspire copycats or other criminals to act. All of these concerns are admittedly abstract, and ideally should be backed empirically for this argument to stand. The second question is how much additional effort and resources should be used, which is a much harder question. I do not think they should be allowed an arbitrarily large amount of resources, but that isn't saying much. Honestly, it probably depends on context. If there is no reason to believe that the victim was targeted for being an officer, probably little to no extra resources should be used: it is effectively the murder of a civilian. On the other hand, if it was done to make a symbolic statement or create a spectacle, that is a more serious issue. You express concern about the possibility of them using "excessive" time and resources; I think what you are really trying to get at is what constitutes excessive. (talk) 20:13, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
There was an infamous case 30-someodd years ago. For context, NYC was in the middle of one of the worst crime trends in the US. The middle class had been chased out of the city and into the suburbs, drugs were everywhere, and murders happened at about 6 times the rate of today. The city was doing everything it could to make it feel safe and try to bring people back, but it was still a very precarious situation.
Then, a young woman was out jogging in Central Park, when she was raped and left for dead; she was not expected to make it through the night. She did, but wasn't expected to come out of coma. She did wake up, though with severe TBI and no recollection of who committed the rape. It shocked the public, and the police wanted to reassure the public.
In the meantime, the rape occurred around the time about 30-40 kids had arrived at the park to rob and assault people there, the media at the time called it "wilding", not sure how true that was, but there were numerous robberies throughout the place. So the police grabbed every one of those kids they could, to try and figure out who did it. They eventually found 5 kids who seemed like a match for the suspects based on testimony, witness reports, etc. These became known as the Central Park 5. They weren't guilty, it turned out to be someone else, but the kids weren't exactly innocent; they did participate in the muggings of people at the park.
So the police basically railroaded 5 petty crooks for a crime they didn't commit, because they needed to reassure the public. SockPup (talk) 20:39, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
I am aware that such things happen, which is why I decided to bracket (that is, ignore) the issue of whether the police do their jobs well, and highlighted the need for empirical evidence to confirm the legitimacy of the proposed argument in favor of allowing them more resources. There may be others, but my goal was more to highlight the fact that there is more than one question being asked here. Now, looking at the case of the Central Park 5, is this an issue of the amount of resources / time devoted to the case? If it is, is the problem that excessive time and resources were devoted to the case? Does this case even fall under number 4 (cases of crimes against the police)? I think your point is that reassuring the public is a bad justification in any case, and I am not going to challenge you on that. But if I'm understanding you correctly, while you have posed a significant challenge to that particular example (which, I want to highlight, I chose for convenience, since it was mentioned above, so I didn't have to come up with my own), you haven't put forward a definitive stance on either the question whether it is appropriate for the police to devote extra resources in case (4) or the question how much extra resources, if so. (talk) 21:06, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Personally, going just off what you wrote above, I would argue that this is a pretty good example of the perverse incentive I mentioned before: the police arrested somebody, anybody to save face / reassure the public. (talk) 21:08, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Yeah there are certainly some pretty high profile cases of shitty police work where the cops hastily found a suspect, threw everything at them and even convicted an innocent criminal. I'm not sure these lessons are ever learnt because it keeps happening. I think in many North American police jurisdictions there is painfully little oversight, questioning of policies and procedures and a pitiful level of accountability. ShabiDOO 16:00, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
The accountability problem is definitely a pressing one, and I think it interesects a lot with the lack of critical examination of policies and procedures. Perhaps the more pressing question is what kind of resources the police should have in the first place? In questioning whether they should have more resources to investigate murders of officers, I think it is salient whether they are using more of the same kind of resources, or whether they are allowed different kinds of resources. I think the latter is more obviously problematic, but even as is, they seem to make use of tactics and resources that are excessive to begin with. So, assuming that some increased resources is justified (and without endorsing that position), in the real world, it perhaps must be accompanied by across the board restrictions on available resources, revisions to police procedures, and increased oversight. Perhaps also a renewed incentive system, to encourage accuracy in investigations and discourage making an arrest just to save face. Serene (talk) 16:44, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Now here's the real ethic question. Let's say there's some horrific crime, and the police "sacrificed" some random crook to keep the city from going into a panic. If you found out about this, would it be more ethical to reveal the scandal, knowing that it will result in panic and more total harm, or keep it hidden, knowing that a travesty of justice has occurred and likely will continue to occur in future cases? CorruptUser 18:26, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
That is an extremely contentious question. Personally, I'm going to have to say reveal the secret. Whoever did the horrific crime is still at large, creating a perpetual threat that another such crime is going to happen. If I were a member of the general public who didn't know, I couldn't reasonably will that somebody keep it secret from me that the police were doing something like that, even if the revelation would be harmful. Also, if the right thing to do is to keep the secret, this leads to a problematic conclusion: if you are going to commit a crime, you should make it as heinous as possible, to encourage the police to arrest a scapegoat to alleviate concern. Now, a related question is whether the police, having arrested the random crook, should seek to continue their investigation in secret? This would increase the risk that their deception is found out, and making the false arrest could restrict their options for investigating going forward: imagine if you were questioned by the police about a heinous crime they had purportedly already solved. Wouldn't that make you a bit suspicious? Serene (talk) 19:22, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

for murders of police officers - are we talking in the line of duty? as in killed responding to an incident of some kind? or have they been targeted for being police officers? were they off duty and their killers probably unaware of their job? these are all going to have different levels media attention. in the line of duty gonna be very high profile. a show of of pulling out all the stops is what is expected here. headlines will be all thin blue lines. moral amongst front line police will suffer if it isnt a top priority - they put their lives on the line they deserve top priority, good deal of public support there to no doubt. and there is the idea of police safety - you dont kill police because the heat it generates ensures you getting the worst outcome possible no chance of getting away as criminal friends wont appreciate the unwanted attention it draws. there is an argument that if you dont investigate the killing of police in these cases with vigor, you put the police at risk because it makes killing them seem like you could get away with it. so usually impulse killings when disturbed doing other crimes. resources here would most likely be for a manhunt over a few days and then just die down

targeting of police by terrorists in an ambush or assassinate officers before they can testify - like happens in italy with some the mafia trials. id imagine there would be large scale and long running investigations into organised crimes and terrorist activities and with security concerns here. headlines wont be front page but would be consistantly in papers over a good while. the issue here is the time and expense if it all collapses at trial.

killed of while off duty for nothing related to work, get no more headlines than an office worker. his colleagues might put in some unpaid overtime but it wont be prioritised over any other murders just because the victim is a police officer.

honestly though, killing of police officers arent really the cases that end up as travesties of justice. most are done on impulse and the culprit usually apprehended at the scene. state side they'd be killed at the scene. if they evade capture then its a few days of drama. serial killers, terrorists, rapists, child killers -these get the headlines and serious political pressure to get results. its these i associate in my head with falsifying evidence and unsafe confessions, where there has been an effort to convict their favourite suspect inspite of the evidence. those ones and the ones where a lazy cop just picked up the first crack head they see to pin the murder of another crack head on and they do 20 years because no one gives a shit about dead crack heads.

the justice systems of any country is a complex beast, there is always room to convict the innocent deliberately or by accident. as it evolves one would hope we clean up the parts that allow for one travesty or another but there is always scope for someone to fall though the gaps. sadly legal reforms dont always work to make wrongful convictions rarer.

was there something in the news that prompted these hypotheticals?AMassiveGay (talk) 20:57, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

Jeff Vandermeer's Southern Reach Trilogy?[edit]

I recently finished reading this weird and wonderful series, has anyone here read them? —LeucippusTalk 00:20, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

I saw the film adaption for the first book "Annihilation" which was an absolutely disturbing yet amazing film. It includes one of the creepiest moments I've ever seen in a film (the being that copies everything towards the end). How were the books? Whats the writing style like? ShabiDOO 00:54, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Yes, I saw Annihilation prior to reading the series. The books are even-more disturbing than the film, but at the same time both fascinating and thought-provoking. If you want to read something that captures the truly alien; if you can stomach the deeply unsettling, then I'd recommend this series.—LeucippusTalk 11:10, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

User: Christopher[edit]

Can someone tell this person he has no say in what is allowed on my talk page and has no right to change permissions.— Unsigned, by: Mercian / talk / contribs

I’ve already said this a few times but if you keep talking about it on different pages I have to keep saying it: I wasn’t the one who protected your talk page, go bother @Spud. Christopher (talk) 14:38, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
You were the one who decided you could block someone for infinity though, were you not?— Unsigned, by: Mercian / talk / contribs
Infinity blocks on sysops are pretty much jokes. You could unblock yourself at any time, and many users just use it to send a message.-Flandres (talk) 14:43, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Remember to sign, and Flandres is right. I was trying to get a message to you that I could be sure you’d see (which apparently didn’t work), because I thought a simple misunderstanding like this wasn’t worth a talkpage thread. Christopher (talk) 14:46, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Also, why bring this to the saloon of all places? Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 15:59, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Yes, @Mercian, I was the one that protected your talk page. Whereas I usually don't like to interfere if some users are happy to keep things on their talk pages that many others would remove for being trolling, I cannot sit idly by when I know for certain that a banned user keeps coming back to edit one particular page. The constant stream of Ken socks really got beyond a joke. And you, Mercian, could have stopped feeding the troll. If you really want to have a two-way conversation with Ken, you'll have to have it somewhere where neither of you are banned. Spud (talk) 02:44, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Been a while[edit]

Sup guys, been a while. Years, actually. Doubt anyone even remembers me. QuantumDudeI am beyond your understanding 05:06, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Weird lies & the liars who tell them[edit]

Global Warning and Global Cooling switch places[edit]

Climate change denialists say "global warming is a myth" or so some variant of said phrase all the time. What if global cooling was taking place and global warming was not the current issue. Would climate change denialists claim "global cooling is a myth"? --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 00:14, 26 March 2021 (UTC)

I guess that would depend on whether or not global cooling was considered a catastrophe. Generally, when people say climate change is a myth, they don't mean that the climate literally never changes, they just don't believe any sort of action is required for the well being of the planet. My best guess is that if global cooling were considered a potential catastrophe (i.e we're all gonna freeze to death if we don't burn any more carbon fuels) then yes, I think things would be the same just in the other direction. Aaronmichael5 00:56, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
On Sott.net (fringe "news"), for over a decade the idea of a catastrophic ice age onset, always coming in just a few years, has been trumpeted. (They describe The Day After Tomorrow as close to the reality to come.) When they lost their former concern with global warming and melting ice caps, and decided that that's a conspiracy to deceive the public, they swung to the most extreme opposing viewpoint at once. There's a minority who think that's the real story and that the mainstreamers are all denialists regarding much of civilization being buried under ice in the near future. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 12:03, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Shit, I said "Carbon fuels" in my last post. I meant "fossil fuels". My bad. Aaronmichael5 15:24, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
Well, the concerted opposition to climate action can be explained by the drastic reforms it mandates. People who have a vested (financial) interest in keeping the status quo will oppose that, and give people downplaying/denying the problem a platform if they can. If global cooling called for action on a similar scale it would meet similar opposition.-Flandres (talk) 15:33, 26 March 2021 (UTC)
More than anything, I'm always amazed at how many people talk about the importance of dealing with climate change but absolutely lose their shit when, my god, it's cold in the winter, and run an air conditioner nonstop in the summer. Try adapting to the conditions, save some tons of emissions. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 20:22, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I think it depends on the type of opposition, what best explains it. There's lobbying and shills – more directly tied to large organized efforts – on the one hand, and those who are simply contrarian cranks for free on the other hand. I think the "best" and most cultic cranks do it because they burn with the desire to prove the world wrong, and secretly want to live in a world which seems to justify that stance. Thus they become useful idiots.

There seems to have been a curious wave of increasing numbers of formerly "progressive" New Age and conspiracist airheads beginning to flirt with fundie and alt-right causes over the last decade. Another example is David Icke. Why? Maybe when society began to meet older concerns half-way, e.g. struggles for rights and environmentalism and against religious dogmas becoming one established "wing" of the status quo, it threatened their status as lone truth-warriors against the world. And so, when society began to polarize around a new counter-current to that, they flipped positions and joined that so as to regain that coveted status as underdog rebels in a sinister world. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 14:43, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

SCOTUS is poised to give itself a veto power over much of the Biden administration’s authority[edit]

SCOTUS is poised to give itself a veto power over much of the Biden administration’s authority.[3]

The more things change, the more they stay the same.Venisaac (talk) 02:11, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Didn't we already know that from day one since they snuck a new justice in at the last second?QuantumDudeI am beyond your understanding 05:27, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
With her age and health problems in recent years, actuarially, it was always a big gamble than RBG would go the distance.
Call me a cynic, but when push came to shove, it was inevitable that the McConnell and the GOP would assertively push to replace a SCOTUS member as soon as they could no matter what they had said in the past. And they would do it publicly and in broad daylight. It wasn't really a matter of sneaking the new Scotus member in. It was matter of practicing realpolitik.Venisaac (talk) 07:08, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
It makes perfect sense from their perspective-they have trouble keeping power the "legitimate" way. If anything, given the high priority McConnell placed on judge nominations as majority leader this was his plan all along.-Flandres (talk) 17:30, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
It is debatable whether a President can ignore an order from the Supreme Court. It can take years for cases to even get to the high court, as we saw during Trump. Given the President's pardon power, the Federal court is inadequately equipped to enforce its orders versus any POTUS. Eat your vegetables.UncleKrampus (talk) 18:21, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
My inner historical determinist and classical weeaboo is wondering how long before we see the offices of President and Chief Justice hammered together for some neo-"Primus inter Pares." Artificius (talk) 04:52, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Don't hold your breath. And have some orange juice. It always cheers me up! UncleKrampus (talk) 14:45, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

Another piece of false COVID news circulating the web[edit]

No, New York state is NOT requiring all residents to have a covid vaccine to go anywhere. A few days ago, some of my contacts on Instagram shared a bullshit Tweet that said New York is "requiring" COVID passports. False. New York is launching an app that allows people to show proof of a covid vaccine, but nowhere does it say, anywhere, that you must have the vaccine or else you can't go to any businesses.

And that's it for tonight's episode of "Debunking stupid ass myths on the Internet." until next time, good night folks! Aaronmichael5 19:00, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

Newsweek: Joe Biden's Approval Rating Starts to Erode[edit]

Newsweek: Joe Biden Approval Rating Starts to Erode.[4]

The first 100 days of a president's term are important in terms of moving forward his agenda. And the Mexico border crisis could get worse.

At least he is making fast progress as far as his mass vaccination campaign.Aware (talk) 02:14, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

Surprise surprise, another letdown from the Democratic party. All they do is elect people that prevent the government from moving leftward and allow the Republican party to push it further right when four years are up. At the end of the day, they both support corporate interests overseas and enforce the same leftover colonial ideals of our predecessors. Princess Mononokeradio contact 06:15, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Oh no, Biden's rating is down 6 points *checks article* ...in a single Ipsos poll with a ±3.5% margin of error.
Why is this a topic of discussion? ℕoir LeSable (talk) 06:57, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
The Rasmussen presidential poll of likely voters has Biden at a 48% approval rate which is an underwater approval rate (below 50%). Rasmussen also reports that 43% of American likely voters strongly disapprove of Joe Biden which is an all time high for Biden.[5]
The Rasmussen Reports poll of the 2016 presidential election was one of the few polls that was right.
Usually presidents start out with relatively high approval rates. Since 1942, according to the Gallup Organization, the only USA president who actually improved his presidential approval rate from the time he was first elected was Franklin D. Roosevelt.[6][7]Aware (talk) 08:13, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
And the Rasmussen polls undervalued Democratic candidates in key states in 2020: Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, and Minnesota were all labeled as toss-ups or moderately to solidly Republican states. As we now know, this did not correspond with reality. Not to mention that the companies' polls indicated a probable win for Donald Trump in the presidential election, while Joe Biden ended up with a sizeable popular and electoral lead. Getting one 50-50 independent probability right does not make you foolproof, or even reliable. IveBeenFrank (talk) 10:35, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
The Real Clear Politics presidential approval poll average of 7 different polls (RCP POLL AVERAGE) had Biden start out at a disapproval rate of 36%. It keeps going up and now Biden's disproval percentage is now at 43%.[8]
Bidens RCP POLL AVERAGE as far as his approval rate has merely dropped about a few percentage points.Venisaac (talk) 11:02, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
The RCP Poll Average for the month of March only had two major sources, YouGov and Politico. Going back through the almost all of February only adds two poll companies which conducted only one poll each: one from PBS (3/3-8) and one from Harris Research (2/23-25). FiveThirtyEight, which encompasses a lot more polls in its rolling averages, including the 3/25 Ipsos and Rasmussen ones, shows a small increase of 36% disapproval to 39%.
Also, every president since at least Truman has had an increase in their disapproval rate since inauguration. Obama had a 13% spike in disapproval rate in his first 66 days. There are valid things to criticize the administration about, but this ain't it chief. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 19:46, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Why the fuck are people using single polls in this day and age? Fivethirtyeight shows the "poll of polls" with a steady 55% approval rating the last few months, and a disapproval rating that ranges from 36% in the beginning to about 39-40% now. Basically, surprise, surprise, it's a reverse Trump poll. No fucking shit, what a revelation. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 20:36, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Who are these "Aware" and "Venisac" users that just signed in to post in tripe? --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario! 20:41, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

When Joe Biden fails to sufficiently stand up to Senator Manchin, who is blocking the removing the fillabuster, he is going to lose support among progressives. Progressive RW editors like Princess Mononoke that are ready to express criticism of fellow Democrats at the drop of the hat are proof of this.Venisaac (talk) 00:23, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Look here son, what do you suggest a President do "to stand up to" any democrat in a 50-50 senate? Keep in mind Manchin could turn the senate Republican with one vote. Take your time, and don't forget to eat your vegetables.UncleKrampus (talk) 00:56, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
You hit the nail on the head. In a lot of ways, Joe Manchin is more powerful than Joe Biden when it comes to domestic policy being enacted. Biden's sticks and carrots are very limited in getting Manchin to cooperate with him. But many progressive Democrats are going to take a "Don't stand there, do something" attitude when it comes to Biden pushing back against Joe Manchin. And nothing Biden does as far as opposing Joe Manchin will be sufficient in their eyes. Biden could easily lose more and more of the support of progressives.Venisaac (talk) 01:43, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Joe Manchin is only one of fifty. That's how much power he really has. Republicans know he is the only guy standing between them and a shit sandwich for the next four years. And people who know politics, know that. Progressives are not stupid, they are impatient. Have a spinach pie, it it good for developing vision. Listen to your Uncle Krampus and do your homework.UncleKrampus (talk) 03:23, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
With Democrats holding merely a one-vote majority in the Senate (including VP Harris' tie breaking vote), Sen. Manchin of W. Virginia can make or break a lot of bills for Democrats.
Manchin was reelected in 2018 by only 3 points. West Virginia has a lot of Reagan Democrats and white evangelicals. Trump carried West Virginia on Election Day by 38.9 points in 2020. Manchin comes up for reelection in 2024. Manchin is a wily politician who looks out for Joe Manchin - not Biden or progressives.Venisaac (talk) 03:39, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Just as an aside. Biden was not my man, as the saying goes. He supports capitalism, is much softer than I'd like on the instigators of the January 6th putsch (more specifically, the ones at th top such as Trump and other politicians who are walking away scott free), is too slow on climate issues, and very importantly, isn't gutting the fuck out of Taft-Hartley. I and mine (the left proper) are more or less where most of us expected to be under a Biden presidency. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 03:43, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
America's constitutional republic was designed at a time when the vast majority of its voters were rural - not progressive urbanites. Many of the Founding Fathers, who wrote the U.S. Constitution, were wealthy and/or land owners. They designed a constitution designed for slow change - not rapid change.
American's like and love their constitution more than most of the world's countries citizens.
I have never had a U.S. President that changed my life much at all. American presidents tend to be like uncles who you see once in a while, but who don't change your life much. Don't expect Biden to change things much. Biden has a history of supporting bankers. Venisaac (talk) 04:30, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Young Turks: This month Manchin told a reporter that he would NEVER vote to revoke the filabuster. When pressed by the reporter, Manchin said, "What part of never don't you understand?"[9]Venisaac (talk) 06:07, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Presidents are not supposed to change anything. They are supposed to validate laws passed by the US Congress even though they have the authority to present legislation for consideration. Congress has the right to ignore the President's requests. Since you have never had your life change much thanks to any one President, I hope you have had a pretty good life. Many people have seen improvements or deteriorations in their lives under various presidents. Many suffered under Hoover, and helped by F.D.R. Without giving Trump much credit, he signed the 2020 Covid-19 Relief Bill. LBJ was also a mover of great changes that led to improvements as well as detriments in many people's lives.
Manchin also said he would consider changes to the filibuster rule, such as making the minority talk if they refuse to end debate, and produce 41 votes at the call of the President of the Senate. The democrats will know when to sleep and when to be ready to vote, and the republicans will be guessing. See how they like sleeping on the senate floor for a few weeks. Uncle Krampus knows. Behave yourself and get plenty of rest.UncleKrampus (talk) 17:40, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
The U.S. president is in charge of governance (head of state/government) and to make sure laws are executed enforced. The president has the bully pulpit too to encourage laws to be created by Congress thus he is a change agent in that respect.
If the various U.S. government agencies are run poorly, people rightly blame the president (this is part of governance). He is supposed to improve the various agencies functioning or at least maintain their level of performance. Thus, the president is supposed to cause positive change in this area too. In addition, presidents have run on cutting down the size of unnecessary/bloated government (Reagan/Trump).
American Presidents often run on change. For example, Obama ran on the slogan "Hope and change". Trump ran on "Make American Great Again" (Which he borrowed from Reagan).
Vox.com has a pretty good article called "The elites have failed us" that is worth quoting:
"It should be a truism that material conditions matter much less than expectations. That was true during the Great Depression and it’s true today. The rhetoric of the rant on the web feeds off extreme expectations — any imperfection in the economy will be treated as a crisis and a true crisis will be seen as the Apocalypse.
Take the example of Chile. For 40 years, it had high economic growth, rising into the ranks of the wealthiest nations. During this time, Chile enjoyed a healthy democracy, in which political parties of left and right alternated in office. Everyone benefited. Yet in 2019, with many deaths and much material destruction, the Chilean public took to the streets in revolt against the established order. Its material expectations had been deeply frustrated, despite the country’s economic and political successes."[10]
Rightly or wrongly, Americans expect each generation to see improved economic conditions that line up with their expectations. And the middle class is presently frustrated in the USA.Venisaac (talk) 23:35, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Imagine how the lower classes must feel. Imagine how those who have it worse than the middle class must feel. Now, if only there was a group of people who specifically advocated for that class almost exclusively... Hmm... Perhaps they'd oppose the current socio-economic status quo, capitalism. Anti-capitalists we could call them... And since the right wing variant of that is fascism, they'd have to be opposed to that. Leftists we could call them.... Hmm... ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 20:45, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Yeah, funny how that never worked out. I hate lazy leftists, don't you? California oranges are good now. Support our migrant workers.UncleKrampus (talk) 03:21, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

Why did hitler push for Aryans if he wasn’t stereotypically aryan himself[edit]

This is coming from a layman perspective as I only know the basics of history which is probably fact mixed with misconceptions. Anyhow, I remember in history class how we were told that Hitler’s ideal master race consisted of tall, fair-skinned, blonde and blue eyed people (I.e. aryans) but what’s strikes me as odd is that hitler himself wasn’t blonde and wasn’t that tall either, so why did he push this look? Also, aren’t Aryans Nordic? If Hitler viewed Germany as the ideal nation, why did he strive for a Nordic look? I’m sorry if it’s a dumb question but just wasn’t sure about it.—WMS (talk) 20:10, 27 March 2021 (UTC)

Well, he also called Asians Aryan. I think he meant with Aryan the „master race“, not blonde and blue-eyed people. Kevs Ping! 20:17, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
It's also worth noting that Nazism has the unspoken notion that Jews are the actual "master race"; Jews had relatively low amounts of intermarriage and in spite of their obstacles kept making their way into the middle-upper echelons of society. If Germans wanted to ensure that only Germans would be at the top of their quasi-socialist worker's paradise, Jews had to go... CorruptUser 20:58, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
The Aryans are believed to have originated from the area north of the Caspian Sea (see the map at Aryan). This is based on linguistic (see the red area on the map at Indo-European languages) and archaeological evidence. The Nazi German concept of Aryan was whatever they decided it should be (PIDOOMA); it wasn't solidly based on historical, archaeological, or linguistic evidence. Bongolian (talk) 23:10, 27 March 2021 (UTC)
Indeed. The aryans were most likely darker than moodern Europeans (certainly not as white as 20th century Germanic people's) so yeah the Nazi's definitely invented an "Aryaness" out of the pure racist creativity of their stupid minds. There was little integrity to their "ideal white complexion blue eyed pure blood" as not many German's themselves are blue eyed (compared with Scandanavians or the Irish), their German-speaking Austrian collaborators were even darker and less blue eyed and their Italian allies even less so. In any case the racist policies of Naziism was rather complex with the fiction of "whiteness" brought to a whole new level, centuries old anti-semitism and emerging German-nationalism in a climate of radical political, social and economic revolution/experimentation/change. The fact taht Hitler was tanned, dark haired and not blue eyed I don't think really mattered. Most germans weren't either and there was so much cognitive dissonance going on at the moment he could have been of Spanish parents and I'm sure Germans would have heiled him. ShabiDOO 00:20, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
About the the Nordic look, the Nordic countries (except for Finland) are culturally and ethnic North Germanic peopleWikipedias. Ethnic Germanic people are far more common than we think across Europe and they were even more before World War 2. The Dutch thought that the German ocupation wouldn't be so bad because they're West Germanic (of course they were totally wrong). Another two good articles on Wikipedia about this are Flight and expulsion of Germans (1944–1950)Wikipedia and HeimatvertriebeneWikipedia. There's also a map somewhere on the Internet showing how prominent were Germanic People across Europe before WWII and after, I can look for it if you or anyone else want to see it. GeeJayK (talk) 00:38, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Honestly, I don't care who Hitler perceived as Teh Mastar Raec; I think that we can all agree that Nazis and Nazism are hella bad. Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 17:56, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
It's almost like associating a particular phenotype/race with power then ramping up the war rhetoric until the pot boils over is a sure-fire way to diminish said ubermenschen. The North Koreans seem to have the right idea (so far): the master race is fragile, and needs its dear leader to shield them from dangerous foreigners and the tough questions their media and lifestyles might provoke. It's juche right. Artificius (talk) 05:11, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

hitler and the nazis didnt invent blonde people and they werent the first to consider blonde/blue eyes the ideal. its been considered the pinnacle for beauty by various european cultures for a very long time. AMassiveGay (talk) 14:47, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

It was culturally advantageous to the politics. I remember first being taught that the Nazis wanted to kill everyone who didn't have blond hair and blue eyes, and that was that for education. I don't think it was until I was in a high school French class watching a French movie about the holocaust, can't remember the name of it, but a Jewish kid got sent to a boarding school, I think to protect him from the Holocaust, but my memory on it is fuzzy. His last name ended with -stein. The other kids were bullying him in a scene, pointing out his "Jewish" features, and they asked him if his name was actually pronounced -stine, or if it was pronounced -steen. It was a tense moment, I should probably find the film again. I literally, to myself any time I hear a "=stine" say in my head "-STINE? ...or -STEEN?" Not because I'm being racist, or because I have it straight in my head, but because it's ridiculous and, I would assume a real if it made it into a very heavy French drama about hegemony
during Aryan supremacy days in Europe.
For that exact reason, I really worry that "Nazi" is reductive and anachronistic to the benefit of ethnic nationalists, race realists, and militarists. I mean, I remember when "grammar nazi" was a fun term. A soup nazi was a mainstream beloved joke, thanks Seinfeld, or is it "Seenfeld." It's not good to be a Nazi. It's also impossible, in 2021 America to be a Nazi if you aren't registered in the Nazi party, sorry kids. It is, however, possible to espouse every damn dumb political rationality that got the Nazis into power, so that they could militarize to protect their political leadership, who disenfranchises any culture culture that doesn't majorally put them in office, and somehow that's the right thing to do because ownership and stewardship of property is, what, inherent to race and not systemic based on the comforts of power? Any modern self-described Nazi is a fucking idiot. It's always been about wealth management and nobody is going to let literal Nazis murder and steal, again, Nazi is an anachronistic term.
we are looking at a zero sum game informed by Malthusian ethics when we're looking at a hardcore ethno-nationalistic fascist, not just government, but society. There are more clear terms than Nazi. It's absolutely unfortunate that there have to be people who are espousing every ideal that Nazism espoused. But they aren't literal Nazis. But if you see a literal Nazi, and they, say, get punched by somebody, I would not say "it's important for both sides to be civil" or any stupid middling shit like that. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:01, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

It is my 27th birthday![edit]

Or as one of my Facebook friends put it, "Uterus Eviction Day". --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 12:57, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Happy birthday! Christopher (talk) 13:26, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
GET A JOB!!! QuantumDudeI am beyond your understanding 17:11, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Happy b-day! ℕoir LeSable (talk) 19:04, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Happy Birthday! Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 19:15, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Happy birthday bro. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 23:04, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Bewaaare the curse of the 27 club!
In all seriousness though, happy birthday.-Flandres (talk) 23:23, 28 March 2021 (UTC)
Had a birthday brownie instead of cake. Brownies are good. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 00:43, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Ĝojplenan naskiĝtagon! Vi jam estas preskaǔ maljunulo (same kiel mi). Spud (talk) 00:51, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Derp de derpity derp derp Birthday derp de derpity derp! ShabiDOO 00:53, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
२७वीं जन्मदिन मुबारक! --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 19:44, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Happy birthday! Ughhh, sorry I missed it. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:09, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Happy belated birthday! Keep up with the zombie novel! Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 16:42, 30 March 2021 (UTC

COVID vaccinations in Serbia and what is could mean for the rest of the Balkan Peninsula[edit]


Due to shortages of vaccine in Balkan nations people have been flocking to Serbia for COVID vaccinations. There are claims that the leader of Serbia is using vaccination surplus to gain political power. I wonder how this will go? --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 21:35, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

Isn't Serbia getting its vaccines from China? Since Serbia is one of the most openly Belt and Road positive European countries? Nebuchadnezzar7658 (talk) 22:55, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

Alan Watt Died[edit]

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yw40dslqI_k a true crusader of crankery is now dead. May he always be remembered... one way or another. Aaronmichael5 02:44 30 March 2021 (UTC)

Fillbuster does not appear to be going anywhere. Manchin and Sinema want it to stay[edit]

Pfizer vaccine may be less effective in people with obesity, says study[edit]

Pfizer vaccine may be less effective in people with obesity, says study.[11]

A lot of people gained weight during the pandemic.

It is one-two punch healthwise plus it makes at least one of the vaccines less effective.Yakikako (talk) 07:33, 29 March 2021 (UTC)

One of the issues with the current reporting world is that reporters are not used to a world where pre-print, non peer reviewed papers exist, so they may be over-enthused to report on something that may or may not be bullshit.
One of the issues with the Wiki format is that banned socks can fairly easily come on and create bullshit accounts, almost give themselves away with an atheism obsessed edit, but retract and instead almost appear normal. Maybe sooner or later, this person will slip up and link to their Conservapedia bullshit on atheism and obesity! We shall see. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 12:03, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Well that is an odd couple, obesity and atheism. While I don't think fat shaming is a good approach to health concerns that obesity might engender, obesity should not be considered a political issue. People are probably better off when they follow medical advice. Bananas are very satisfying when taking a long walk. Try one today.UncleKrampus (talk) 14:57, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Oh, well. At this rate, some of Ken's socks might get blocked as users in their own right if all they ever do is troll. Spud (talk) 15:40, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Good to know that you think COVID is a "good" thing because it might kill atheists who happen to be obese, Ken. Very "loving of thy neighbor" of you indeed. What a great "religion of love" you have. /s
Lol... give Ken time and he'll be fantasizing about genocide... --Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 18:13, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
Curious that "yakikako" means "that's right" in Swahili. UncleKrampus (talk) 18:30, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
I think if Jesus were actually divine (lol) and met Ken he would be pretty horrified by his chronic un-christian-ness.ShabiDOO 19:04, 29 March 2021 (UTC)
And you know what, Ken, if you are using any of your socks to actually make good faith edits to articles on this boring, dying, irrelevant wiki of your atheist and agnostic enemies, then the joke's on you. You'll reveal yourself eventually. You won't be able to resist boasting about how you tricked us. Then we can ban your sock but still keep any changes you made that are worth keeping. I know not every right-wing troll is you. But your desire to follow in the footsteps of Mikemikev, DMorris and GodlessRaven and dozens of teenage edgelords by becoming our newest whack-a-mole troll means you've sunk even further in my estimations, Spud (talk) 06:10, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Bye, Ken, keep on spamming the talkpage with your earth-shattering revelations about the connection between atheism and obesity. Hell, I'm not even kidding. I need my daily high of lulz. Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 16:40, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

Some quality Fox News reporting (and a question about informal fallacies)[edit]

Fox News juxtaposes the website for the "Biden-Harris administration" with verbal gaffes by Biden referring to "President Harris" and right-wing commentators' speculation that Biden is senile, thereby insinuating that... Harris is secretly pulling the strings? Or something.

Is there a name for this rhetorical "technique"? It's kind of like just asking questions, but it's not really asking any questions explicitly, just putting unrelated information side-by-side in a way that tries to get the reader to infer a certain conclusion. Wikipedia calls this WP:SYNTHESIS, but I don't think that term would be recognized outside of Wikipedia. Aaron Rotenberg (talk) 20:35, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

Poisoning the well I think fits here. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 21:03, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

MediaBiasFactCheck and RW[edit]

I thought MBFC's ratings for RationalWiki and Wikipedia were peculiar. Was reading thru our article on MBFC and noticed RW is rated "High" Factual Reporting, whereas WP is "Mostly Factual". At face value this seems questionable; as much as I like RW, among other reasons - but also due to a smaller number of editors and a higher tolerance/less controls around trollish behaviour - it's only natural that we would be more prone to errors in our content. The MBFC analyses are also interesting; on one hand it states "[Regarding RW] In general, all information is sourced to credible sources of evidence, much like Wikipedia." And on the other hand, "Factually, not all Wikipedia entries are properly sourced or may link to poor sources, therefore we rate them Mostly Factual, with each entry needing a review of the sources used."

Thoughts? Kauri0.o (talk) 20:49, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

I dunno. I think WP and WP each have their strengths and weaknesses. Because of WP's NPOV and vast scope, there's a certain amount of bullshit creep that can be offputting, particularly about lesser-known individuals and organizations, which can self-written in some cases. Given RW's smaller scope, we're less likely to allow bullshit creep. Both sites suffer from reference rot (assuming that a reference is OK even if it was added 10 years ago). Bongolian (talk) 21:16, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
I get tired of seeing right-wingers being called 'conservatives' when there hasn't been anything conservative about US right-wing politics for forty years. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱsos. 22:21, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
With all due respect to RW, I'm quite surprised that MBFC rated it higher than TOW(The Other Wiki, i.e. Wikipedia.) Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 22:31, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Well, as Bongo said we have less of a "overextension" problem. We can correct errors where we see them quicker. As somebody who edits the ancient history portions of Wikipedia...let's just say if the topic is obscure and people cannot fact check you instantly you can get away with an awful lot. A lot of the Armenian history related pages say fucking Moses of Chorene is a perfectly reliable source.-Flandres (talk) 22:35, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
I do not like MBFC, they seem to favor sources based on amateurish reviews that are inanely short and guts feelings. The most accurate sources out there (Think of sources like TheGuardian) are rarely rated "high" and are instead rated "Mostly Factual" or "Mixed". Their rating system is neither consistent or accurate, it just sucks. Also, a source will always be rated higher for being non-partisan or "centrist". I guess it makes some sense that unbiased sources are ideal to get information from, but what does that have anything to do with factual reporting I may add?
Let's say a source is an ultra-right-wing populist and partisan news/blog website that mostly reports on Republican's achievements, let's call it "MAGA2024.org" for simplicity's sake. MAGA2024.org never fabricates or alters news, in fact, it covers news responsibly without any form of garbage (Think of it as the polar opposite to Infowars). Should the rating of the website be low because it is all about promoting Conservatism? Actually, that website does exist, it is called "Townhall".
According to Newsguard (Which was extremely harsh toward Fox News because of their repeated bullshit), there is nothing wrong with Townhall and the information on there is reliable, but despite this, MBFC gave it a "Mixed" rating and a two paragraphs review. It is utter shit all around.
I do not know anyone's opinion on Townhall because in the sense that it biased it would be better using other sources, but like I said, in terms of factual reporting, Townhall is unproblematic. likewise for TheGuardian which for god knows why also has "Mixed". 2A02:120B:C3FB:3B40:5811:BFB:373:10A2 (talk) 00:01, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
"There is nothing wrong with Townhall.com..." ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:25, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
For the record, Townhall isn't Conservative, it probably never was. It's a reactionary tabloid outlet that's no better than Breitbart 1.0, possibly worse to be honest. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:30, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Townhall.com spun off the Heritage Foundation and largely runs conservative opinion of the style where the GOP can do no wrong and the Dems can do nothing right. From my viewpoint, the RW article on them is correct that their fact accuracy is mixed, because they publish every pundit that wants to. Accuracy therefore depends on a combination of the columnist and/or how the GOP is handling a particular subject. For a subject the Trump era GOP didn't do very well on, for instance, Townhall.com has a very amusing set of articles on hydroxychloroquine (including one from RW's former "arch-nemesis" who goes racist with the "Wuhan virus" bullshit). Not looking good there. It's "better" than Breitbart, though, much less "racial resentment" culture baiting. I actually don't know why The Guardian is "mixed" in factual reporting at MBFC. My "gut feel" wouldn't put them at the highest level, but I can't think of any controversies (or Google any) at this moment. MBFC did list some inaccurate articles that does sort of confirm that they may not be the greatest fact checkers, though. They are left (but not heavy left) biased, of course. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 00:47, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
@PanGalacticGargleBlaster Three points. Townhall is more reactionary than conservative. Two, Townhall is still pumping out misinformation, including the conspiracy theory about Covid originating in a PRC lab. Three, I would suspect the Guardian's rating is affected by their UK branch, which has issues staying accurate when it comes to the science around trans people (the UK has a rather high number of TERFs and transphobes, including on the Guardian UK's staff). And four, as a bonus to pre-empt the BoN's "but that's the opinion section of Townhall" response, Townhall is mainly built for its opinion section. One only need to look at their front page to see how much space is dedicated their opinion sections over their (supposed) news section. That aforementioned news section takes up less than a quarter of their frontpage by the way. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 00:56, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
You can have "blowhard" conservative reactionary type opinions that, technically, aren't factually inaccurate. (But they will also say nothing much other than "OMG Dems bad". A typical Townhall.com article is often basically this). Just Googling, it seems MBFC really will ding misreporting on bad science (the Wall Street Journal which isn't terrible outside its editorial page gets dinged for anti-climate stances for instance). So Townhall's bullshit about climate change will probably hurt the rating more than Townhall's NFL social musings, I imagine. In that light, The Guardian being majorly dinged for TERFs makes sense. Generally the only magazines I've seen with the "very high" factual reporting rating so far is technical, peer reviewed journals like Nature or Science... which actually makes sense to me. This also probably explains the high rating MBFC assigns to RW, because from my observation, this Wiki's weaker articles don't tend to be the science oriented ones. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 01:14, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
When it comes to news, Townhall is factual while extremely biased, they hired blatant liars as opinion columnists I'll give you that, while I personally didn't think about that before making my comment, that does explain the perfect score on News Guard (News Guard doesn't rate opinions). Guess if you'll use Townhall as a source, stay the fuck away from their opinion section. 2A02:120B:C3FB:3B40:712B:13BB:82E4:150E (talk) 10:31, 31 March 2021 (UTC)

Hilarious video with plenty of goat[edit]

--Goatspeed. Watch meCircularREmail2.gifasoningMy experiments 07:34, 31 March 2021 (UTC)

Downplaying harassment/stalking[edit]

This discussion was moved to RW talk:All things in moderation#Downplaying harassment/stalking.

Timestamp Christopher (talk) 17:49, 31 March 2021 (UTC)

Is Lil Nas X the new Marilyn Manson?[edit]

As expected, his new "Heaven and Hell" themed phrase is ruffling some fundie jimmies. I know it's kind of a ballsy move to drop sneakers with real human blood, but it was noneoftheless still politically incorrect enough for the Ken-state-pant-shitting-gun-girl to claim victim of her being "threatened" by him to rape her dad after she told him that he has "daddy issues". So much for the thick-skinned right. PoorlyDrawnRockford.jpeg Rockford the Roe boop my snootpraise Oscar Wilde 02:04, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

An artist in danger of being a few-hit wonder tries the Satanic Panic gimmick, and proves that it works just as well at triggering the fundies as it did in the 1980s. Nas X's first big "country trap" hit sampled Trent ReznorWikipedia (which means that the guy that wanted to fuck you like an animal with harsh industrial rock in the 1990s not only wrote the Man in Black's last big hit, but now also has a Country Music Association award. Strange world, eh?). Since Marilyn Manson is in a bit of a legal drama right now, maybe Nas X should sample the original shock rocker, Alice CooperWikipedia, next, perhaps? PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 02:38, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
I literally tried to explain WAP as shock rock to some guys who love metal, and one likes Marylin Manson. Alice Cooper, Black Sabbath, I dunno, Rob Zombie? Like, they're acting like these bands weren't on the radio. I mean, I get the difference, one is a "subculture" of white people who want to wear buckles and chains. My older brother started with Marylin Manson and got way into metal. Nobody told him what he couldn't listen to. ON THE RADIO, I heard NIN's Closer, on TV, I saw Bloodhound Gang's "the Bad Touch." It's not scary. It's schlock, nobody actually lives a pop song. It's just not exactly the sex jokes we're used to. I did actually spend my allowance on a Hot Action Cop CD, and I'm now fuckin mortified by that. I had friends put Christmas lights under their cars. It wasn't ironic but the music wasn't causal to it. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:23, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
WAP is just a pop dance song about fucking. The main difference is that the detail uses more words that were once considered "naughty". All those hair metal guys singing about "wanting action" in the mid 1980s? Turning on the quiet stormWikipedia for some "sexual healing" in the late 1970s to early 1980s? Same topic. Granted, before the sexual revolution things were more cutsie in music (probably up until the late 1960s or so) so I could see a shock for audiences raised on Lawrence WelkWikipedia champagne bubbles. But that was 50+ years ago. I mean, Donna Summer was moanin' about loving to love you baby in 1975, this was well before blowhards who are triggered by this subject, like Ben Shapiro, were born. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 14:42, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Not artsy enough. HairlessCat (talk) 12:36, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Welcome back. Oxyaena Harass 14:05, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Hi, Oxy. I hope you're doing well! Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 16:43, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
Anyone remember the "stroke me" song by Billy Squier? It was a song about giving him a handjob, and that was on the radio too. I don't think WAP should be celebrated as having a lot of artistic merit, but neither should it be denigrated the way it is by the far right. It's a stupid song the singers wanted to have fun with, even Mozart wrote multiple songs about getting licked in the anus. SockPup (talk) 17:09, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
"The Stroke" is according to Mr. Squier a song about the music industry cleverly disguised as a song about masturbation or other "dirty activities". There's no doubts about Cyndi Lauper's She BopWikipedia (1983) and what she's bopping though. (This song landed her on the PMRC's "filthy fifteen", but the PMRC probably was populated by some of those raised-on-Welk types.) PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 17:45, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
And "tubthumping" was a cleverly disguised criticism about the Tony Blair Administration. Yeah... no. If a song's message isn't obvious without the artist explaining it, it wasn't there in the first place. To paraphrase XKCD, "communicating poorly and then being smug when you are misunderstood is not cleverness". SockPup (talk) 19:00, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
I speculate that Squier deliberately wrote the lyrics that way to get a naughty sounding song past the censors to be honest. :) PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 19:52, 30 March 2021 (UTC)
For SockPup, consider the Matrix and it's reception and fanbase. The allegory for not fitting into the "regular" world so taking a pill to help you feel connected to your own experience, accepted by a band of misfits who are constantly under attack by conformity might hurt your argument, but it was still a tight movie. Consider Fight Club, and its reception and fanbase. I don't even think it's intentially subversion, it kinda knocks people over the head, but knowing that the book is about how stupid it is for guys to feel like they need to punch each other in the head to truly feel masculine, and anything underneath pure combativeness gives you big ole "bitch tits," might hurt your argument, but it's still a tight movie. If I imply these songs are "not artsy enough" it's because they are built to be commercially accessible. Bloodhound Gang was consistent in their sex-pun schlock, I've always defended their existence as impressive, building an entire career out of sex puns, like, if you want to hear original sex puns put to dance beats, they fucking did it flawlessly. They actually got to have a radio hit that wasn't about sex, but pretty much all of their tracks are sex puns. Hot Action Cop was not being ironic, they were commercially available to 14 year olds who were chomping at the bit to have modded cars and finger girls. Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion aren't selling anything smug, they are just performing something that might blow your brains out because it's explicit. Nobody is asking you to have the correct interpretation of it. I hope you don't apply that XKCD joke to any piece of art you would want to take ownership over. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 02:54, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Btw, Sock Puppet, obviously, you can refer to me as Cory :P, may change the sig to "CorSock" to match. The Matrix and Fight Club are interesting. The Matrix is a great example of how art itself can evolve; originally about the Cartesian Demon given cool action sequences, now that the Wachowski Brothers are the Wachowski Sisters, it has since become about Trans issues as well. Fight Club is, well, Tyler Durden was a terrorist, and nothing they did was supposed to be emulated. The movie was about how toxic masculinity is an escape from reality than only gets people killed for the dumbest of reasons, and that as crappy as the world is you have to face reality with a clear mind or your escapism will result in you joining some whackadoodle cult based around a nonsensical ideology. There's artistic merit to the movies, and they do ask serious questions. The real criticism I have with them is that they, along with a lot of movies like American Beauty and Office Space, imply that that the worst thing that can happen to you is to have a decent middle-class job. There's a reason these movies stopped being made around 2008.
When I say we shouldn't celebrate WAP, I include it with things like the Transformers movies. Sure, they can be entertaining and a lot of people can like them, but they don't have any deeper meaning beyond "hey, let's entertain ourselves for a little bit". Not everything has to be moody and artsy and thought provoking, obviously. Point is Cardi B isn't going to win any Nobel Prizes for Literature a la Bob Dylan for her works, nor should she, the same way I don't think Transformers should be in the National Film Registry. SockPup (talk) 18:44, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
So commercializing anything deep is absolutely inherently oxymoronic, in that if you want to ask people to look deeper at something than you've done creating it, you can't actually make art for yourself. And I would agree, Max Martin is a brilliant scourge, Sia has become a big problem. But when it comes to art, if it's somehow validated by who gets paid, and for people like you or me, who mostly consume art, it's sometimes frustrating to see somebody get validated regardless of our standards. There was a time when I thought "art is a scam." Art is an intentional effort to produce. Art appreciation is the scam. I'm not asking you to stop doing it, I love considering art. But believe me, the crap that gets paid out, maybe we just don't get it. It works, sonically, lyrically, I don't know why it works. I mean, I'm there for it visually, hubba hubba, and I occasionally get that ear worm of "That lil' dangly thing in the back of my throat" like, perfect lyric, meted perfectly. I haven't listened to the song many times but sometimes I wake up and have to say it out loud. That's a me problem, I dream vividly and I wake up with pop songs heard running, just running wild. It's Taylor Swift or it's Lady Gaga or it's Cardi B, the ear worm is real. With all pop, I think the whole is less than the sum of its parts, but there's always something that grabs me. Were I less inclined to critical thinking, I'd probably love it. Were I more inclined to protect a media I have no control over, I'd probably hate it. But it's fun for people. I have a problem where I can easily express myself through other peoples' music.
Cartesian Demon, I'm not familiar with that interpretation of the Matrix, looking at it it's pretty spot on, but if the authors managed to walk it back far enough to not include it, maybe this weird argument about art and intention and using somebody else's art as intention gets illogically, irrationally, and unmeasurably weird. Gol Sarnitt (talk) 03:08, 1 April 2021 (UTC)

40 years of attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan[edit]

Considering how Taxi Driver was the main reason behind the attempt I can't say that some things changed that much... GeeJayK (talk) 14:20, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

Happy tdov, though I don't believe in an afterlife,I hope Reagan is suffering in hell ❤!PhoxyDude (talk) 00:54, 1 April 2021 (UTC)


So the US State Department has produced an annual report about the state of civil rights around the the world. It's getting some traction in Spain because it points out that some politicians were a little aggressive when speaking about right-wing media. But if you click through the countries they report on, every country seems to have some sort of problem with the press being attacked by politicians, other civil liberties nor being fully enforced or occasions of somewhat heavy-handed policing.

The report is for the year 2020. One of the years of the Trump Presidency. I'm just wondering how much moral authority the US has to point out other countries' problems in these respects. I don't want to be accused of tu quoque and I'm not saying that the criticisms might not be valid. It just seems a little bit hypocritical. Ah! And there is no section on the US.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 16:32, 31 March 2021 (UTC)

This irony was acknowledged and remarked on - Secretary of State Antony Blinken condemned Trump's human rights record when releasing the report. Freedom HouseWikipedia also released a report recently with their rankings. The United States ranking declined from 94 in 2010 to 83 in 2020, lower than all western European countries (as a reference point, in this report, 83 is tied with countries like South Korea, Panama, and Romania). PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 16:46, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Ha. OK, thanks for that. Unfortunately that bit of information didn't cross the Atlantic well.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:02, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Honestly, I feel the same way at times. I think the best approach is acknowledge the problems in the US, and then focusing on whichever other country you're criticizing. Perhaps pointing out parallels as well. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 17:12, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
The problem is that American propaganda claims it has the unique right to sit in judgement of all other nations as the "greatest bastion of liberty." Thus people highlighting American domestic issues in political arguments is very popular to derail a conversation about another country.-Flandres (talk) 17:29, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
America has declined in terms of civil rights, and that's a problem. But there are far worse places to be as far as lack of liberty and civil rights goes. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 17:42, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
True...but in a internet argument where, sadly enough, sophistry often carries the day, pointing out perceived hypocrisy is very convenient.-Flandres (talk) 17:44, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
America hasn't kept up with many mixed-system countries (especially in Europe) where there are many rights which barely exist in the US such as the right to housing, postsecondary education, healthcare, strong labour rights, stronger rights and protections for the disabled etc. But the US is far ahead on Free Speech. It is the last bastion of true free speech because most democratic countries don't have anything as extreme (though it should be said most don't even want it.) No developed country sees America any longer as the exemplar democracy. ShabiDOO 18:45, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
It seems that some pretty absurd things can be claimed to free speech in the US!Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:43, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
The free speech thing is going down the tubes though. It's not against the law to say things that disagree with the groupthink online, but it certainly can get your career ruined. "Cancel culture" is a real thing, and I don't get the sense that Gen Z values absolute free speech the way Millenials and Gen Xers did. Is Fahrenheit 451 even still taught in schools? SockPup (talk) 19:51, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Free speech is only valuable when the communication it produces is valuable. Claiming the election is fraudulent, for example, isn't. As I recall, Fahrenheit 451 argues against artificial restriction from information or ideas as a method of social control. Information, knowledge, and ideas are still accessible: people can find out a great deal of things on this very wiki. But that does not mean such ideas should be accepted, or even tolerated: a fascist's views are contradictory to the fundamental values of a liberal society and democracy, and and cannot be tolerated. People have a right to know concepts, but do not have a right to be accepted for promoting ideas that directly or indirectly advocate for the discrimination or murder of people or groups. IveBeenFrank (talk) 20:25, 31 March 2021 (UTC)


Oddly enough, from a historical perspective, I think the current status of "cancel culture" honestly is an improvement. See the Hollywood blacklist for what American "free speech" was like for some in the 1950s. We've gone from a world where government censorship of media figures had teeth (HUAC, 1950s) to where government censorship was discussed, but had no teeth (PMRC, 1980s) to (so far) merely babbling about social media companies supposedly "censoring" (today). Roscoe ArbuckleWikipedia was "cancelled" half because of the yellow journalism William Randolph HearstWikipedia. Charlie ChaplinWikipedia was "cancelled" half because J. Edgar Hoover didn't like his leftism. Today's situation is more mob driven or employment driven (all corporations have certain reputation standards they want upheld). Hard to control mob opinion, honestly... besides if you don't like the mob opinion, there's usually a "counter mob" where you can go and bleat away. As far as employers go, that's what at-will employment means, conservatives, right? Call me back when you start supporting unions. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 20:41, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
But the most visible cases of "cancelling" are being done under the nose of the most powerful union the world has ever seen; the Screen Actor's Guild. SockPup (talk) 20:53, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Freepup, Free-speech is entirely limited to the government's ability to censor you or punish you for what you say. Freespeech has nothing to do with losing opportunities, sponsors or friends because you said some stupid shit. People have ALWAYS paid a social price for saying stupid shit and they always will. This isn't a new thing. Canceling has always been around and until recently it was fairly dominated by conservative forces. Depending on who you were and what you did...if you announced to the world 18 years ago that you "didn't support the troops" you would have paid a stiff social price. Saying you were against segregation in Southern States some decades ago would have seen you paying a massive social price. It goes a little too far sometimes but then, it has always gone a little too far sometimes (and that was relative to the time and the climate). People quickly forget McCarthyism. At least, and for the first time in a significant way, topics that have you pay a social price include bigotry, sexism and rape-culture-jokes as opposed to the same ole anti-nationalism. ShabiDOO 21:03, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Right, "the mob" even applies to the SAG. If "cancel culture" gets bad enough where "the mob" of actors thinks it is a problem, there is a mechanism to resolve the issue through the SAG. It does not seem like this has happened yet. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 21:14, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
You know, for some reason this conversation about precedents for cancel culture makes me think of OS Star Trek and the deep south
Also, this sounds like useful stuff for the draft article on this topic...-Flandres (talk) 22:16, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Well, considering how Shatner was never cancelled despite being often called out pretty much everyone else involved I'm not sure it's a good exemple. GeeJayK (talk) 22:19, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
I was thinking about the kiss scene in Plato's Stepchildren. Didn't some southern stations threaten to yank Star Trek of the air for that?-Flandres (talk) 22:21, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
According to the other WikiWikipedia there was some executive concern about the kiss, but nothing really happened after it aired. Speaking of the South, though, one group that sort of "cancel boomeranged" the South was the Beatles. According to Paul McCarthy, in 1964 they threatened to cancel a concert in Jacksonville, Fla. because they refused to play in front of a segregated audience. (Update: The show actually went on, non-segregated, as the Beatles demanded.) Of course, the Beatles themselves were "cancelled" by certain parts of The American Mob in 1966, particularly in the Deep South, during the infamous "more popular than JesusWikipedia" incident. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 22:37, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Oh, now I remember. This episode is so bad... Also about the Beatles, were they ever cancelled because of Billy Preston or something like this? GeeJayK (talk) 22:40, 31 March 2021 (UTC)

Your COVID vaccine experience?[edit]

If you've gotten the vaccine, and are willing to, please share your experience here. Got my first Moderna shot last Friday, got a fever and chills that night as the vaccine did its work, and the arm I got the shot in hurt for three days (frickin' intramuscular shots y'all!) but is now back to normal. Semipenultimate (talk) 16:17, 24 March 2021 (UTC)

The research I've read indicates getting a fever on first shot is about 25% of people, but nearly everyone gets a pretty serious one on the second shot. I'm not yet eligible. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 16:18, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
I stood in a long line. I got the shot. My arm hurt. We went home. The end. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 19:47, 24 March 2021 (UTC)
First shot was a very minor pain in my arm for a day. I got my second shot early afternoon, I was up till midnight and felt nothing. The next day I didn't have a fever or chills, but I was extremely hypersensitive to touch; not even temperature, but even feeling my clothing brush against my skin felt like someone stabbing me with needle that delivered electric shocks below my skin and down into my muscles. Staying completely still basically mitigated it, but I forced myself to go to work that day and even had to work an extra hour. I'm 30 and generally healthy, which definitely played into it. After the second shot plan to take at least the next day off from doing anything, it's not worth it. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 02:38, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
I am still waiting for my turn to get the vaccine. 2A02:120B:C3FB:3B40:CC9E:F5BC:9019:16BF (talk) 10:51, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
i went in, i gt the jab, i went home. took less than a minute at the drs and no side effects at all. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:18, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
My dad, my sister and I are on our way from Chicago to Southern Illinois and back to get the 2 dose Moderna (typing this on my Chromebook with my cellphone's hotspot). My dad has a college friend that said that he's willing to ignore the emergency prioritization for us to fill a quota. There's not a lot of people down there willing to get it because they believe in Facebook posts about how Bill Gates is coming for them. PoorlyDrawnRockford.jpeg Rockford the Roe boop my snootpraise Oscar Wilde 17:20, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Well, I just got the first dose and there was basically no line. Nothing bad so far since I have to give myself shots in the arm daily. It looks like a lot of other Chicago people had the same idea because the cars clash with the vibes down there. PoorlyDrawnRockford.jpeg Rockford the Roe boop my snootpraise Oscar Wilde 18:11, 25 March 2021 (UTC)
Had two jabs (Pfizer: Jan 11th; Mar 25th) no effects from either apart from a little ache in my arm at the jab point. The flue jab early December still aches. Scream!! (talk) 13:45, 28 March 2021 (UTC)

Well, since I've just been told that I am eligible for the shot staring April 5th, I will take these experiences into account...-Flandres (talk) 20:43, 1 April 2021 (UTC)

Going for Gold![edit]

Well, I think our AfDem page has been a success. We now have a decent system in place for demoting articles to silver and so forth. However, we have not had a new gold cover story in years, while the ones we have, a couple of them might not be worthy of their golden brain. So I plan to work on getting one of them up to gold-status over the weekend, but I don't know which one just yet. What articles do you believe that, with a bit of work, could be gold? CorSock (talk) 18:16, 1 April 2021 (UTC)

Category:Cover story nominees is a good place to start. Christopher (talk) 18:19, 1 April 2021 (UTC)
Great idea! I've made a small tweaks to the page (mostly just templatized a year with a magic word so that there's slightly lower maintenance) and added a watch link. Glad to see this process formalized. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 18:33, 1 April 2021 (UTC)

New Slogan for the MyPillow products[edit]

Low quality pillows for Low IQ's

MyTraitor MyPillow makes low quality products and stupid people buy these products. It completely works. --Eggs Over EASyPlus (talk) 23:19, 30 March 2021 (UTC)

Honestly, from reviews I see, the quality of MyPillow didn't seem terrible in its category (shredded polyurethane foam), though far from the best. But the marketing tactics Mike Lindell uses pretty much stink. Very Z-grade con-artist like even before the bromance with Trumpism.
His latest newsmaking event was to "predict" Trump will be back in office in August, a prediction should be just as successful as recent QAnon predictions have been. He also announced a new "documentary" (that surely will cure some people's insomnia without medication), and also announced a new conservative social network (that surely eventually will provide new data breech stories to hungry tech news outlets, if he actually gets around to building it at all). I guess shit like this keeps his name in the news and solidifies his image. Though "someone that reminds you of your racist conspiracy babbling uncle" doesn't seem like a positive selling image to me. (shrug) PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 00:18, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
Bonus points for the bad porno mustache; I'm a guy who's inclined to give facial hair the benefit of the doubt, as I have a full beard (I'd shave it for the right occasion, but that's sure not happening anytime soon), but you'd he was actually trying to look like Ron Jeremy or something. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 02:13, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
"The only pillow that is truly there for you after 72 hours of Twitter and Facebook. Collapse into your own fevered nightmares, wake rested, ready to commit the atrocities you painfully fumbled with in your dreams." Gol Sarnitt (talk) 04:33, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
I remember reading somewhere that he was subject to presidential speculation for 2024. Laugh as you please, and he deserves it...but it is scary how little a diffrence there is between him and the average Republican.-Flandres (talk) 13:21, 31 March 2021 (UTC)
I think I'm less of a MyPillow guy and more of a Pillow Cube guy. Roman Sionis tends to be inactive during summer 02:11, 2 April 2021 (UTC)