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Are their weirdos who deny that languages evolve?[edit]

I ask because it just sounds like the dumbest thing someone could say. (talk) 16:00, 17 February 2023 (UTC)

Isn't that the basis of linguistic prescriptivism, or what linguistic prescriptivists want to be the case? Vee (talk) 16:07, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
I was thinking of people who deny historical sound change (talk) 16:44, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
If there are, I bet they’re French. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 16:49, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
you bastard. you stole my joke via an edit conflict AMassiveGay (talk) 16:51, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
Given that there are people who deny biological evolution (because we were all created a few thousand years ago) I suppose there might be people who deny language sounds evolve as they were all "created" at the Tower of Babel. But I would imagine that their denial of language evolution is just a detail compared to their denial of biological evolution. Nevertheless this is all supposition on my part. Can I ask the reason for the question?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:38, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
My guess would be that it's related to the recent redefinitions of words associated with sex, gender, and other things associated with modern identity politics, like the "power plus privilege" redefinition of racism. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 21:22, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
I thought of this concept earlier and thought it was so stupid that I had to ask if if it was real. 2600:4040:475E:F600:1CCE:DD46:FEEE:447D (talk) 22:10, 17 February 2023 (UTC)

the Académie Française are more concerned with anglicisation of the french language. internet/gaming terms are often english. the AF apparently arent keen on that. there are a lot of portmanteau words appearing as a result of the internet that are just fucking clunky and ugly and are just feel horrible to say out loud whether in english or french. id onboard with getting rid of those monstrosities. manufactroversy is the one that springs to mind. i believe they are loanwords from the language of ancient lovecraftian horrors. to speak them aloud is to risk drawing their attention and succumbing to utter insanity. they call us to speak to them aloud, only typing them during discourse via the internet can relieve their lure, the inherent madness dissipated across the web, coagulating into those horrors that feed on our nightmares and memes till they are ready to consume us all. when our minds are subsumed completely our ghosts will bear its mark. a blue tick seared into our dead souls, carrion to satiate their eternal hunger. twitter storms tenderises sentience while physical forms shrivel into husks, the conflicts we perceive and scream at one and other we know are shams and we know we all serve as the same nutrient soup in the belly of a grotesque beast. the incessant twittering is both appalling and deafening. oblivion cannot come soon enough.

on the plus side, it seems to have a taste for nazi/alt right fucknuts, so they are getting pulled in and munched on first. every cloud has a silver lining i guess. but god help you if tiktok is the beast that is dragging you to its maw. please god dont let tiktok be the one AMassiveGay (talk) 23:05, 17 February 2023 (UTC)

It depends what you mean by "evolve". If you mean "change over time" and not the more complex idea involved in biology, then it would be ignorant to deny it. In that case I think there are more preposterous beliefs, like the earth is flat. Ariel31459 (talk) 23:10, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
Ray Comfort probably believes that languages practice adaptation/microevolution rather than macroevolution. Nythar (talk) 05:09, 18 February 2023 (UTC)

Raquel Welch has died[edit]

The woman who defined beauty for at least a couple of generations has passed away after a short illness. Her children are about my age - but that wasn't an issue for a young man in the 70's :) Aloysius the Gaul (talk) 21:25, 15 February 2023 (UTC)

She weren't bad looking for someone over a million years old. AMassiveGay (talk) 10:30, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
I have to be honest, this is the first time I've heard of her. Vee (talk) 07:27, 19 February 2023 (UTC)

“No harm” fallacy of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) practitioners and supporters[edit]

A common argument I've seen among CAM practitioners and supporters is that their "medicine" and tips are often harmless. A certain Tamil Siddha practitioner (Sharmika Saran) on social media recently got popular because of her obscure "medical" advice. It usually goes like "eating X fruit does Y" (Eg: eating ice apples increases breast size). It was blatantly wrong, but her supporters keep making a twisted argument that it's morally right to lie to people (often accompanied by a Thirukural about how it's okay to lie for the greater good) because people would consume more fruits (or any natural foods) which would improve their health in the long run. They extend this argument to virtually every "medicine" of theirs (while being blind to using arsenic, mercury, etc., in their concoctions or dismissing their harms). I see a fallacy here, mainly "appeal to nature", but couldn't articulate it. What would be your thoughts and counter-arguments for this? — Unsigned, by: Edilebert / talk / contribs

I would point out that this argument was settled long ago when the term 'snake oil', referring to 'snake oil salesmen' was coined. I would also suggest that the only way to increase breast-size using fruit is by putting the fruit in your bra. FairDinkum (talk) 11:52, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
I think the OP is more referring to Consequentialism, as well as the closely allied 'right for the wrong reasons'. This first got me around the start of the pandemic, when it was clear a decent % of the population was wearing their flimsy non-medical mask in the incorrect belief 'it stopped you getting Covid'. It was a toss-up; it would satisfy my annoyance towards stupidity if I told them they were wrong, but then I'd have to accept the deal that chances were some 80% would have then binned them, as they didn't give a toss about others.
Ultimately, and with experience I believe that at least for 'responsable persons' [ie anyone able to reason and give informed consent], the ends usually do not justify the means. That firstly you may lose all your future credibility if/when your lies are discovered and secondly, it would allow said lies to gain more traction with the general public. However, I would grant a level of exception for dire situations, such as 'mortal peril'. KarmaPolice (talk) 12:08, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
Getting off topic, I would wager that there is some benefit to wearing non-medical masks, but it is a far more complex subject than people, including 'experts' and health authorities, seem to realize. The protection it provides the wearer may be minimal but it would hinder distance of projection of viruses from the mask wearer. There were definitely some useless COVID initiatives, and some that probably made it easier to catch COVID, such as requiring grocery stores and drugstores to close earlier. That just packs more people into the same space at the same time rather than having them temporally spread out. People catch COVID by being in a room or indoor space for a long time with a contagious person or people who have also been in that room for a long time. A person with COVID will saturate the air in a room with viruses if they stay in that room for an hour. If they wear a mask it might take longer for them to saturate the air in the room. And a non-infected person would have to be in a saturated room for at least 20 minutes to be sure to get infected. It's easy to get infected to if you spend a significant amount of time in a room that is already saturated. And some non-medical masks are surely better than others. If you can barely breathe through your mask, it's going to work a lot better than if it is easy to breathe through it. Most people who had to wear a mask for long periods like at work chose masks that are easier to breathe through. FairDinkum (talk) 12:43, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
But the benefits are for other people. I make it quite clear from my example that these are the sorts who don't give a damn about overall public health, are only doing it 'to protect self' and would ditch immediately if they realised 'it didn't work that way'. Thus, the dilemma; to enlighten them on the facts would cause a worse outcome with an overall public health angle. KarmaPolice (talk) 13:03, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
There are two main points at which you could object to their argument. First, that it just isn’t true that CAM is generally harmless, so that in fact lying to people about it does not produce good consequences. Second, that it isn’t generally true that it is permissible to tell a lie if it has good consequences. The argument is bad because it has false and controversial premises, not because it makes fallacious inferences. 𝒮𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓃𝑒 talk 13:12, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
Personally, I would attack this particular snakeoil by saying it can have negative consequences even if the oil itself is harmless; for example it may deter genuinely ill people from seeking genuine medical treatment, cause them to spread communicable disease further in the belief they have been 'cured' or even engage in riskier behaviours thinking they are somehow 'protected' from it [for example, the people taken in by the olive oil 'covid cure' very well may have indirectly lead to the deaths of several people [as the 'cured' visted vunerable persons, went about their daily lives normally etc]. KarmaPolice (talk) 13:30, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
an apple a day keeps the dr away. or lets you see in the dark. puts hairs on your chest. makes your dick harder, longer, stronger. general and vague non specific claims of it does you good seem generally harmless to me. making specific claims about how lifestyle and dietary changes have on specific medical conditions, over selling the benefits as more than general improvement to health if it prevents you seeking treatment for disorders you have been convinced you are immune or can be cured without actual medicine. just ask steve jobs about what harm that can do. at best you wont bother building healthy habits because the benefits do not come as immediately life changing as promised. and thats if whats being sold is actually healthy for you and not actually and significantly life limiting. outside of charlatans pushing a particular brand of snake oil for profit, are those promoting many practices we'd class as woo actually lying? if they are not profiting from the promotion, is it not just as likely they actually believe the hype? AMassiveGay (talk) 14:32, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
We actually have an article What's the harm (logical fallacy)...Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 20:50, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
I see two distinct cases with respect to non-traditional medicine. They are curable and incurable. People with curable disorders may be harmed by folk medicine, or outright fakery. It is in no wise advisable to venture beyond the recommendations of MD's in this case. On the other hand, the incurable case is more problematic. When can the effects of positive thinking matter when premature death is the prognosis? We can suppose that such sentiments are futile. Yet, just passively accepting ones fate according to the scientific premonitions of modern medicine seems a kind of terrible surrender. If I were dying I would not go gentle into that good night.Ariel31459 (talk) 22:22, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
i would not judge anyone with an incurable disease clutching at any straws that they can. it strikes me as being something else to sell useless treatments to the desperate AMassiveGay (talk) 00:09, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
Of course. But I don't think of a terminally ill person, as a victim of those miscreants. If they have access to the internet they can get all the information they need. Nobody uses wikis for medical advice.Ariel31459 (talk) 01:12, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
I know people in their 70's and 80's. They are certainly a demographic which in which terminal illnesses are common, but their frequently poor internet skills means they are not going to be getting much information about their conditions from the net. (On the other hand they are less exposed to internet hucksters too, so that may even out.)Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 08:27, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
I think the above assumption is dated and partly obsolete. Some 45% of American seniors use social media and 75% use the internet. In the UK, 'young elderly' internet use was at 83% by 2019 and 'old elderly' at 62% [and thus shall be higher now, due to the shifts from Covid]. In fact, 'living without the internet' has become so difficult I'm not sure it counts as 'optional' anymore [again, at least in the UK]. We also need to remember that 'barriers to entry' are much lower than 2013 [re smartphones, auto updates, unlimited broadband data etc]. So 'poor internet skills' are an issue, in the respect such people are more likely to be suckered by shite-peddlers on the Face-Book, rando sites which 'look professional' and so on. KarmaPolice (talk) 09:52, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
I am not talking about making an "assumption". I am talking about people I know personally who are terrified of the net. People who when they are told "you can do that on the net" automatically exclude themselves. I know these people and they are not uncommon. I myself am 70 years old so I can assure you it is a demographic I am familiar with. I live in Spain, and I'm not sure what the statistics are here - or whether the people with problems might have self-excluded themselves from the stats.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 14:32, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
Which is why I said 'partly obsolete' - I know one 'oldster' who uses it but believes nothing on it; will take a leaflet's word over a company's website, Daily Diana's over a Reuters direct report and an article from the 1987 Britannica over say, Wikipedia. I learned this when visiting them for Christmas and they called me a liar over raven coverage - their 'evidence' was from a kind of 'Enyclopaedia of British Birds' which I'd guess dated from about 1975 and was naturally, '100% correct'. I also have a boss of the same age band who's never used the SuperWeb; I mean literally he employs a secretary who's duties include printing out his emails to read and taking dictation for the replies. Not that I'm completely complaining here; it's partly kept me in a job as he thinks I'm a wonder for 'sourcing' items he can't find [and is unaware that eBay/Amazon exist]. Anyway, this is why I said 'poor internet skills' are an issue; for there's plenty now who fall into the Dunning-Kruger gap; ie knows enough to not be scared witless about it, but not enough to be genuinely 'safer' online. KarmaPolice (talk) 12:33, 18 February 2023 (UTC)
the parents of a terminally ill child will go to greater lengths to find anything at all that might help in some way than they would for themselves if they were the ones terminally ill. if their child's drs are telling them that it is hopeless, the available information is likely to reinforce that view. to have any hope at all of finding a cure for the incurable, you need to swim against an information tide. you need to disregard the objective advice of trained medical professionals, seek fringe and experimental treatments where research is as of yet lacking and inconclusive, where a positive outcome is highly doubtful. you need to take the advice of dubious individuals touting their services and telling you what you want to hear. treatments can be incredibly expensive, requiring funding thats denied, challenges in court to reverse decisions, determine who has the right to decide what treatments, or if to treat at all. i suspect parents in that situation will not easily make objective and reasoned decisions from the available information. and there will be a mass of charlatans and partisan ideologues pushing and pulling them in all kinds of directions. i am reminded of alfie evans and other such cases. not strictly CAM or alternative medicine i know, but similar issues involving disagreement with the relevant medical authorities. desperate people make desperate decisions. good judgement is impaired AMassiveGay (talk) 10:47, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
Seeking out second opinions is semi-normal in such a thing, and should be encouraged [as well as questioning doctors]. Medical persons are not infallible and at times yes, there are experimental treatments which do end working [for all treatments were experimental once]. However, you missed the point; the 'funding' had apparently been sorted in that case, the hospital objected on the grounds they believed it was utterly futile and thus, not in the kid's interest to be subjected to it. Therefore, basically they got in a argument with the parents on a definition of 'best interest', which was sorted by a judge [the clinching point being them basically saying 'there was no brain left to save'.]. KarmaPolice (talk) 11:13, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
my point is that one does not simply make a decisions after calmly and objectively assessing all the information available. the judgement parent of a terminally child is going to very different to the judgement of a terminally ill adult in control of their own well fare. the specific example i gave was to illustrate the lengths desperate parents, can go to try and save their child. parents/people will disagree with the medical opinion that they or their loved ones are beyond help not because they have considered the evidence and think its mistaken, they do so because they dont want it to be true. desperately dont want it to be true. in the context of 'whats the harm?' how far do you go to ensure your kid gets every possible chance before you end up compounding the misery of what are already unbearably tragic circumstances? parents in that situation can be forgiven for not being able to accept the shitty hand that fate deals them, but as in the circus surrounding alfie evans or the many other such cases, the parties exploiting them and encouraging them to drag out their misery for profit or for ideological point scoring deserve no free pass for their actions. AMassiveGay (talk) 12:20, 17 February 2023 (UTC)

I am a big believer in evidence-based medicine and there is a lot of quackery in medicine. One of the physicians I visited warned about trying a new medical procedure until there is more data due to the prevalence of medical science fraud in the medical literature. Fortunately, the condition went away on its own. I was initially driven to try out alternative medicine due to a team of infectious medicine professionals being unable to cure me after many months of treatment. Fortunately, the complementary medicine professional I tried out had a medical degree from Russia and his treatment worked within 30 days. I also sustained an injury and tried out tumeric combined with black pepper for inflamation and it worked fantastically and there is good scientific evidence behind it working according to the Mayo Clinic and a studies cited at PubMed.[1][2] At the end of the day, it is irrelevant whether a treatment originated from Western medicine, Eastern medicine or folk medicine as it ultimately comes down to the evidential weight supporting a treatment. Nythar (talk) 23:19, 17 February 2023 (UTC)

Anti-inflammatory is a pretty common effect to many different substances including cannabis. It seems to be a good thing if inflammation is a problem, but you also have to keep in mind that inflammation is a immune response and anything that is anti-inflammatory is technically a immunosuppressant; which can actually be pretty problematic for certain diseases especially when infection is concern. -Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 00:53, 18 February 2023 (UTC)
The infectious disease doctors couldn't clear up some kind of disease I had in my lungs that made me cough all the time and prevented me from working for months. This caused my car to be repossessed by the bank and caused my credit card balances to go sky high. And I was living in a different city from my family. So I was in desperation mode which caused me to try out the complementary medicine professional who had a medical doctor license in Russia. In the USA, this Russian-American was a chiropractor and nutritionist. He changed my diet to low fat and had me taking vitamin A and colloidal silver internally to kill off the infection/disease in my lungs plus I ate a lot of carrots (which have vitamin A). The Cleveland Clinic says there is potential harm from taking colloidal silver so they advise not taking it internally. But for me, I had no adverse consequences that I know of so I was fortunate. But the bottom line is that the Russian-American healthcare professional solved in one month what the infectious disease doctors could not cure in 6-8 months. I also had another serious condition that medical doctors could not cure that complementary medicine did cure, but there was a lot more evidence for it and no risk (unless colloidal silver which does have risk). So I come back to evidentially weighing the evidence of any particular treatment. The key though is to practice preventive health care through exercise and a more planted based diet with low mercury seafood too. That works great for the Japanese who live longer than most Westerners. Nythar (talk) 05:04, 18 February 2023 (UTC)
you've forgotten to provide a link to whoever you are posting these testimonials for. how are we to cure our vague and undefined infections that our infectious disease doctors are stumped by if you dont hook us up with a russian american quack or dubious supplements that are not allowed to be sold as or claim to bbe medicines? collodial silver is snake oil with no strong evidence for fighting infections. and really do not ingest the stuff. its not only ineffective for doing anything useful taken this way, its dangerous too. AMassiveGay (talk) 11:34, 18 February 2023 (UTC)

these ufo's are wired[edit]

like why now of all times to start having ufo's pop up, are they china's? russia's? from space? like what the hell Wheelsontheancom (talk) 16:17, 13 February 2023 (UTC)

We are certainly seeing a lot of argument from ignorance at the moment. As in - we don't know what they are therefore they are X.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:20, 13 February 2023 (UTC)
Do you mean 'weird' (the balloons may also have wires).

A possibility - they are a form of misdirection (as with magicians tricks), while something else is happening and/or to see how observant the US monitoring system is. Anna Livia (talk) 18:24, 13 February 2023 (UTC)

If these are extra-terrestrial in origin you'd need to wonder about their technology if they are using balloons to cross the vastness of space then drift aimlessly across the US before being shot down by a fighter jet. Acei9 20:52, 13 February 2023 (UTC)
This is very likely testing NORAD air defense abilities which is why they have been allowing these balloons to float well into American/Canadian airspace before shooting them down. Don't want China or any unfree state adversaries for that matter getting details on our air defense capabilities. SwampFox (talk) 20:59, 13 February 2023 (UTC)
Probably the most useful article I have read on this.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 08:16, 14 February 2023 (UTC)
People should not jump to conclusions about low-tech being indicative of incompetence or a reflection of limited capability. If you can do something just as well (or better) on the cheap, it would be dumb to do otherwise. For all we know balloons could be the best or even the only means to do what their owners want them to. BTW, the latest is that some of the smaller ones shot down recently may be domestic commercial aircraft. FairDinkum (talk) 09:19, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
i am sorry for my miss spelling i'm kinda stupid ngl Wheelsontheancom (talk) 13:14, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
Titivillus stalks RW (as he and his 'computer-know-it-all young relatives' do more generally).Anna Livia (talk) 13:26, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
@Ace McWicked Perhaps they're just cheap. VeeMeow? 01:02, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

The East Palestine US Derailment and Chemical Spill[edit]

As a resident of Ohio, this has been filling my Twitter feed. While it is awful, some of the questionable things being thrown around include statements like "worst ecological disaster in American history", "mini Chornobyl" and claims of a "media blackout." While people share scary photos of massive smoke plums from the controlled burn and debate who's to blame, I feel that valid concerns are being drowned out by sheer alarmism and conspiracy theories. Has anyone credible taken a look at the claims and rumors around the whole mess? Paul S (talk) 01:24, 14 February 2023 (UTC)

I don't feel like being extremely concerned about this is an entirely alarmist thing. This will continue to happen until the railroad industry acts to end bad business practices like cutting down on minimum inspection time for rolling stock, overworking essential workers and undermaintaining pieces of equipment older than the people operating them. The current issue with the rail industry from what I've seen is that they have fully filled their niche and barely need to compete or expand: therefore, the only way to quickly increase profit is to reduce expenditures and increase productivity in staff. That leads to problems because one of the only things that can be cut down on is useless crap like essential safety measures and one of the only ways to increase productivity in a line of work where productivity depends on the time worked is to... increase the amount of time they work. I work with heavy machinery and fatigued equipment operators are really fucking bad news, on the level of intoxicated operators and sometimes worse. Can't imagine being fatigued and operating a mile long death machine weighing tens of thousands of tons going at automobile speeds. SwampFox (talk) 01:33, 14 February 2023 (UTC)
It's almost as if unions occasionally aren't "featherbedding" when they demand extra inspectors everywhere. CorruptUser 22:54, 14 February 2023 (UTC)
Train derailments happen in the US with concerning frequency. Two more have happened, including another one dumping chemicals. Probably has something to to with the fact that physical rail lines aren't maintained or monitored by the federal government, most are privately owned.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 23:50, 14 February 2023 (UTC)
I live close to a shortline that has been closed down several times. First was incomplete railroad maintenance and once an inspection happened all of the bridges (youngest ones were from the 1970s, this happened from 2009-2010) were unfit for rail traffic and a concerning number were on the verge of complete collapse if a train with a heavy enough load went over them. National railroad had to buy them out and even after 11 years of fixing up the damage the rail traffic is limited to 10 miles per hour. This is extremely common in smaller shortline railroads across the United States who run on shoestring budgets and cannot afford repairs costing millions of dollars per bridge. There's probably a fair chance that this derailment happened on a shortline rail line that gave NS right-of-way. SwampFox (talk) 07:14, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
The train derailment happened because the Biden Administration, which promised to overturn the Trump Administration deregulation of the railroad administration, never did it due to corporate interests influencing them. It's so insane that an industry that moves heavy loads at fast speeds isn't better regulated. As the effects of poor maintenance stack up, these accidents will happen with greater frequency.Nythar (talk) 11:31, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
I'm curious. Ignoring the whole "value of life" thing those filthy peasants yammer on about, what is the value lost if an entire train goes down a cliff? Google says it's about $1m per locomotive and trains typically have 2 of those. Each car is probably $50k so that's $5m. It depends what is being hauled, but ill pull out my ass that it wouldnt be out of the ordinary for the train to be hauling $100k/car, so the train is worth $17m. Youd think the companies would prefer not to lose the $17m from a crash, but if the government keeps bailing them out from their own mistakes then they arent really losing $17m are they?CorSock (talk) 11:54, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
I have changed the section title for clarity. Anna Livia (talk) 19:43, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
It sounds like the US freight rail companies are following the “short term gains, long term decrepitude” business model that started with the downsizing and corporate raider crowd in the 1970s and ‘80s. Basically, it’s about making short term savings by cutting everything to the bone and beyond, while avoiding investments in the core business like the plague and thus boosting quarterly earnings, which in turn boost stock values, and to send as many dividends to the shareholders as possible, possibly alongside stock buybacks.
Other countries are beginning to show cracks due to this, but hardly anyone, with the possible exception of the UK, seem to have ridden this short term “shareholder value” horse as much into the ground as the US; hence, other countries tend to be less affected.
Arguably, this also pertains to at least part of the US public investment in maintenance of infrastructure, which has pretty much followed the same model (continue to reap the benefits of past investments, while avoiding making the necessary investment in maintenance and upgrades for as long as possible). Here, the main issue seems to have been the freezing or cutting of various taxes that were supposed to fund such maintenance, alongside the problems with priority being given to new projects, which tend to give more exposure (ribbon cutting etc.) to political sponsors than do upgrading and especially maintaining existing infrastructure. ScepticWombat (talk) 23:36, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
There was a similar incident in Serbia that happened 2 months ago. A train that carried ammonia derailed and spilled ammonia all over Pirot. Next month another incident happened near Pančevo.ASerb (talk) 08:19, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
There might be a fraction of a sliver of a silver lining to the Ohio disaster for the US as a whole: Depending on how it plays out, it might sink a potential Pete Buttigieg presidential bid in 2024…
He has certainly handled and responded to it with all of the grace, warmth and empathy towards the victims and immediate regulatory action that you might expect from a US political careerist of the empty suit variety who’s also a McKinsey alumnus.
Basically, he seems to use the old Third Way line that gosh darn he just can’t do anything about it, though of course he would really like to (i.e. I really would like to help you, but I just can’t). ScepticWombat (talk) 17:30, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

Why do misinterpretations spread like wildfire?[edit]

I’ve been asking myself that lately, but it feels like some things in the public eye that are held as generally correct just simply aren’t. To name a few: the Illuminati symbol being eye of providence when it was actually the owl of Minerva; the 5 second rule which is just not correct; the idea that vikings had horned helmets or that dogs see in black and white when in reality they see a spectrum of shades between yellow and blue. Some of these, for lack of a better word, myths seem to be so ingrained in the public perception that certain people will stand by these even if you try to dispute them, but a quick google search proves the preconceptions wrong. So, how is it that misinterpretations and myths just become the standard, I know this is a question with probably many factors to the answer but I’m just curious on people’s perspective on this.-WMS (talk) 01:23, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

Well, lots of people believe these things and tell other people about them, and we generally treat other people's testimony as reliable (and not without reason). The exception would be if something seemed totally implausible, but oftentimes mutually incompatible claims can all seem plausible (it's easy to imagine a 3 second rule, or a 4 second rule, or a 6 second rule, or that dogs see a spectrum of shades between red and green), so it can be easy for stuff like this to get through. Things like these are also fairly inconsequential, so if they come up in casual conversation it might come across badly to correct somebody on them. 𝒮𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓃𝑒 talk 01:43, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
I see, that makes a lot of sense, these things are not too outlandish to believe and because of them being just little tid-bits of trivia/general knowledge most people don’t go on crusades to verify every claim haha. I guess if a person was very vigilant about any potential fact they would probably be seen as “that asshole” so most people just don’t bother and just take it at face value and say it to another person as this interesting little tid-bit and so it spreads. Makes sense :).—WMS (talk) 03:01, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
A lot of these things got started before the web existed, and back then it was very hard to verify information. There was a much greater tendency to rely on 'experts'. It used to be that if something was published in a book, magazine, or even a newspaper, people assumed that whoever wrote it made sure it was correct. People didn't just decide dogs can only see in black & white, some supposedly credible expert wrote it somewhere. Now we have the opposite problem, people don't trust experts and anyone can claim to be an expert. For seven years the idiotic tv show "Curse of Oak Island" has plodded along trying to find a treasure that does not exist because Readers Digest published a ridiculously embellished article in the early 70s, based on an account of a 14 year old boy who saw a campfire burning on the island from his location on the mainland, in the late 1700s. It's pretty obvious the kid had recently read Treasure Island, one of the few novels at that time that were written for adolescent boys. So he imagined that pirates were burying a treasure on an island even though pirates didn't bury treasures, it's a fiction from Treasure Island. People used to make up stuff all the time, to make their lives seem more interesting. Now they do it for political reasons. BSing doesn't have the cachet it used to, but it still manages to flourish because so many people want it to. FairDinkum (talk) 10:09, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
There's many reasons such 'misinterpretations' happen. For example the the Illuminati-Minerva issue can simply be that of an over-application of Occam's Razor; right now a lot more Americans know of the former than the latter, and thus assume it's the former. Sometimes, particular pop-culture happens to force things a particular way; the 'horned Vikings' started from 19th Century Germanic/Scandi art to a few critical early Hollywood films, via Wagner. As for the Oak Island issue... well, Upton Sinclair put it best; 'it is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it'. Having an article on how it is a load of bollocks is not going to sell well and there's not a chance in hell you'd be able to pad out that news for 166 episodes. KarmaPolice (talk) 20:13, 20 February 2023 (UTC)


The number of articles has sat at 7726 for a number of days: this is 51 less than 7777 - therefore 'there is a conspiracy':) Anna Livia (talk) 13:00, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

bruh moment wheelsontheancomsay hey 13:22, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
RW reaching 7777 articles is noteworthy - and mild 'playing with numbers' amused. Anna Livia (talk) 00:40, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

Why family (and people) can be really toxic?[edit]

What is about human beings that makes us fall victim to crab mentality. There are people who want nothing more than to bring other down others in life. They will insult, bully, threaten, and sabotage any attempt you make to advance forward in life. They also project their own personal insecurities on you in an attempt to make you feel bad about yourself. It makes it hard to trust anyone.SensaurC-137 (talk) 15:21, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

the need to be the one who has the last word, or be the one on top. (my take on your question) wheelsontheancomsay hey 15:48, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Well, the article you situated here, bullying, states that the mistreatment of others can and often is motivated by the desire for power, or social acceptance. I must say though that not everyone is in a ruthless pursuit of power. It's sadly common, but I assure you, there's always going to be a diamond in the rough. Direct your eye to that glimmer... make a bet that love exists. Servasym (Talk / Contribs) 15:49, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
I understand that. It is just sad when its comes from the people who are supposely to be closest to you. “Family” especially; who do nothing more than to judge you and insult you and want to see you fail even if they say they “support” you. (i.e I support you as long as you stay inbounds of my expectations).SensaurC-137 (talk) 16:22, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Greatness, ultimately, is relative. The more people are above you, the less great you are. The more people are equal to you, the less great you are. The more and further the people are below you, the *more* great you are. If you want to be great, you can either do so through personally excelling, through oppressing other's ambitions, or both. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 17:03, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── People can be assholes, but people can be also be genuinely altruistic and wholesome. Human "nature" is not what Hobbes wrote it to be, but Rosseau wasn't right either. It turns out you can't reduce the behaviors and qualities of a species as complex as humanity to a single state. VeeMeow? 18:14, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

Speaking particularly of families, there's one fairly broad type of damaging and dysfunctional person there (usually in the role of parent) who can do a lot of harm while fully convinced that they are only doing good. That's the type who sees their personal wants as the true needs of all others. Some therapists call those "narcissistic parents", in a broader idea of narcissism. On my mother's side of the family, her brother became deeply alienated from his and her mother (and not only from his more plainly abusive father), and that mother in turn was deeply alienated from her mother; and me – in the other direction – I've had a very difficult time feeling at ease around my mom (who later became a small-time alternative health person and conspiracy theorist who always knows best) ever since I was a child. These three mothers have in common that they always know best and always know that what they do is helpful (and if the person they help disagree, that person is of course wrong). --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 23:18, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Agree 100% on this. It can even be “friends” and extended family too. I don’t know how a person can survive that type of family structure. It’s that type of thinking that makes me think the idea of “family” is nothing more than an illusion.SensaurC-137 (talk) 23:38, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Keep in mind that most families are dysfunctional. It may not happen as frequently as it used to, but families used to get started when some horny idiot knocked up his girlfriend and was then told he had to marry her, and then he spends the rest of his life taking his resentment out on the kid(s). My family was very dysfunctional but thankfully by the time my siblings were in their late 50s they finally grew up to be adults. FairDinkum (talk) 08:11, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

what does it mean to be addicted? just what to know what you all think[edit]

to get a convo going, some would say i'm a pothead and addicted to monster energy. wheelsontheancomsay hey 13:20, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

some might say it but would they be correct? AMassiveGay (talk) 13:26, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
well ye, but we ain't talking about me wheelsontheancomsay hey 13:28, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
addiction is not having control over something to the point it is harmful. that in its self makes addiction entirely subjective AMassiveGay (talk) 13:56, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
Addiction is what happens when the urge to avoid withdrawal symptoms causes you to continue using the substance. Contrary to popular belief, cannabis can cause intense withdrawal. Nicotine withdrawal is much less intense, on par with coffee. The definition Amass gave is a standard definition that places that treat addiction use because they want to encourage their clients to think that drug consumption is destructive. The only 'harm' that comes from drug consumption is due to the price and availability of the drugs, and the price of the drugs is a reflection of their illegality. There are plenty of housewives who are addicted to benzos that do not experience any harm, unless they run out of pills and can't get more. FairDinkum (talk) 14:30, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
No, drugs are harmful. They vary in their harm, some are less harmful than alcohol but when you are comparing to a drug that's responsible for literally half of all murders in the US you arent exactly selling me on it. CorSock (talk) 14:40, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
addiction has little to do with withdrawal symptoms. if it were, drug addiction would be no big deal and easily 'cured'AMassiveGay (talk) 15:17, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
I didn't say anything about alcohol, but I will admit that some drugs are harmful, though usually only to the person ingesting them, but that does not mean every drug is harmful to some degree. What is the harm in opiates? What is the harm in edible THC products? Even benzos aren't harmful unless you take so many that either your heart stops or you pass out and choke on your vomit. Alcohol causes the most harm to society because drunk people do stupid things, but there is no other drug that does that. The only other drug that causes some harm to society is meth. It is also a myth that people who are addicted have to constantly increase their dosage. As for AMG's statement, I don't understand it. Why would addiction be easy to cure because of withdrawal? Withdrawal is the major stumbling block that people who try to quit drugs face. The other is habit, or routine, which is easy to break. I assume you are buying into the rhetoric that an addict is an addict for life, and that a clean addict is still an addict who must constantly go to 12-step meetings or counseling or they will relapse. FairDinkum (talk) 15:35, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
Even benzos aren't harmful unless you take so many that either your heart stops or you pass out and choke on your vomit. Nope - benzos are incredibly addictive and like alcohol the withdrawals can kill you. They also lose efficacy over time, can make symptoms worse and have a serious rebound effect when ceased. Acei9 18:09, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
because the withdrawal is a physical and temporary condition. you can go through the withdrawal and still have an addiction. the psychological aspects remain. my own experiences with substance abuse has withdrawal playing no part in it.
btw the definition i provided above is the one used by the NHS AMassiveGay (talk) 15:40, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
and no i dont suggest people are 'addicts for life'. that is a conclusion you are making and not supported by what i said. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:43, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
Yeah, I figured that's where you were going. I don't believe that. What about people in palliative care? Some 'experts' say that they're not addicted. If you take the stigma out of addiction, you're left with nothing but withdrawal and habit. Everything about drug addiction treatment is wrapped up in biased language. When you're in withdrawal you're 'detoxing'. If you decide to use drugs again after quitting, you've 'relapsed'. The psychological aspect you're referring to has been inculcated to you from this punitive system. And if you don't believe that addicts are addicts for life, what 'cures' addiction? How do you know when you're cured? If you relapse after you're cured does that mean you weren't cured? FairDinkum (talk) 15:50, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I think it's supposed to be that addiction only counts if it's pathological, but it's obviously more loaded than that. People who are neurochemically dependent on caffeine for instance aren't said to be "addicted" despite meeting all the technical requirements for such a diagnosis. VeeMeow? 16:00, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

I'll tell you one thing, my view jibes with behaviorism. Monkeys slam the cocaine button. No messy psychology to get in the way. FairDinkum (talk) 16:13, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
I'm a heavy drinker but my addiction days are over. I've been through alcohol withdrawal once, some years ago now. It was... unpleasant. These days I have the ability to not drink if the situation requires it. If I have my daughter staying with me I don't touch a drop for how ever many days I have her. Same goes if I have a day full of meetings. I won't drink the day or night before so I have my wits about me. But when I go for it I fucking go. Acei9 18:07, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
vee is correct. that something causes you harm is some way but you still persist. this can manifest way before any withdrawal becomes a factor, and things like gambling addiction, there is no withdrawal, but your job, and relationship to friends and family will be completely fucked. indeed withdrawal may only be experienced by the time you decide you do have a problem has become apparent with something and decide to quitAMassiveGay (talk) 18:45, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
I was lucky in that my alcoholism didn't cost me anything but some aspects of my health. Never lost a job, maintained all my friendships, my divorce was unrelated to alcohol and I have never been in serious trouble with the authorities (beyond things like "Move along, Sir. You're making a scene"). That said it did make for some difficult mornings. Acei9 18:49, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
Dylan Thomas - An alcoholic is someone you don't like, who drinks as much as you do. Acei9 18:50, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
hence the subjective nature of addiction. AMassiveGay (talk) 19:02, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
I have always viewed as it a situation wherein you forgo other aspects of your life to pursue a particular substance. Preoccupied with a substance at the expense of health, family and employment etc. Acei9 19:14, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

When I took drugs and behaviour in college we made a distinction between addiction and physiological dependence. Addiction was defined as excessive uncontrolled use that causes a person distress and persists despite a person’s efforts to stop. It was said you can basically become addicted to anything, sex, video games, gambling, etc. Physiological dependence happens when physiological activity becomes altered due to excessive use, that the body no longer engages in typical functions in the absence of the foreign substance. I.e. the brain no longer synthesizing or responding to dopamine in the absence of meth, the various physiological issues associated with opiate withdrawal, neuropathological symptoms associated with alcoholism, etc. Cannabis for example cam be described as something you can be addicted to, but you can’t develop a physiological dependence. Most drug users surprisingly don’t develop an addiction or dependence technically. But about a third of them do for “hard drugs” like heroin — which adds up in social costs. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:05, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

OK I do not want to denigrate people's experiences, but addiction is not as complicated as AMG is suggesting. If you have a gambling addiction and stop cold turkey you will experience endorphin and dopamine withdrawal, which is pretty much the same as opiate and cocaine withdrawal. The 'psychological' aspect is that drugs (including ones you manufacture in your body). People use drugs or gamble or whatever, because they like the way they feel when they do it. If you have a powerfully pleasant experience, you'll remember it, and if you're stressed out or things aren't going well in your life you may want to feel those powerful pleasant feelings again. That's what the addiction industry calls 'relapse'. But when we use those loaded words we set up a fictional dichotomy that only adds confusion to the issue. The thing that keeps you using is that you feel very crappy if you don't get your fix. That's addiction. If you go through withdrawal you are no longer addicted, but you can certainly become addicted again if you start using again, and it is much more difficult for a person who has been addicted to a substance to use it sporadically without getting addicted again. There are people who only use on weekends, they are not addicted. Addiction 'treatment' in the form of counseling or 12-step programs are simply methods that might boost your willpower to abstain from going back to using when you're not addicted. And the longer you abstain from using the more you will forget what it felt like, so the urges will become fleeting, so if you distract yourself for a few hours by watching a movie or whatever, the urge may subside by the time the movie is over. But if you've only recently finished withdrawaling, the urges will last much longer. If your addiction caused you to lose valuable things, like your family or your home, you can channel your rational understanding that you don't want that to happen again, into stronger willpower. A person who has used, even if they don't get addicted, will remember what it felt like to be high for a long time, while a person who hasn't ever used will not have those memories. There is also the issue that a person who was abused as a kid is much more likely to become addicted, because the memories of the abuse are dulled by the drug. I guess what I'm trying to say is that everyone's life is complex and unique, not just people who use drugs. Addiction may seem complicated because it happens to people with complex histories. But if you're plagued with memories of past abuse or you have PTSD, and you use drugs to dull those memories and the way you react to them, eventually becoming addicted, those issues were there before the drug use. The addiction isn't the problem, it's just a red flag that you're self-medicating a problem. There are plenty of people who become addicted not because of any psychological issue other than liking the way they feel on drugs. They may just be self-medicating boredom. It would probably be easier for a person who is self-medicating for boredom to kick an addiction than a person who is self-medicating for PTSD. But boredom and PTSD are not part of addiction, they are not complications of addiction, addiction is a complication of them. It may sound like mere semantics but I don't think it is. The addiction treatment industry combines the catalyst that is a conduit to becoming addicted, with addiction itself, and calls that addiction. But they are two separate, albeit correlated, things. That's why they treat the addiction first, and then maybe get around to addressing the contributing issues after, and that's why in that model, addiction is hard to kick. If they were to deal with treating the contributing issues first, then addiction would be easy to kick. I think that may be what AMG was saying, which means we are probably in agreement and may only differ in that AMG considers contributing issues to be part of addiction while I consider addiction to be a separate phenomenon. FairDinkum (talk) 03:38, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
BTW, OSD, the distinction between 'physically' addicted and 'psychological' addiction is out of date, All addiction is both. The only way addiction can't be physical is if we believe that mind cannot be reduced to matter. Cannabis withdrawal definitely has a strong physiological component. For one thing, it's very hard to eat food when you are in cannabis withdrawal. Your mouth doesn't even produce enough saliva. The addiction treatment industry generally recognizes this now. FairDinkum (talk) 03:43, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Also, I consider what Ace described as addiction, "Preoccupied with a substance at the expense of health, family and employment." to be a complication of addiction, not addiction per se. FairDinkum (talk) 04:04, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Paragraphs dude. Paragraphs. Acei9 04:10, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Yeah i know, but then I'd have to enter the right number of colons for each paragraph, which is a pain. In this case it would have only been one, though. I also did not expect it to be that long. FairDinkum (talk) 05:39, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
There's also a broken sentence near the beginning, I'm not sure what that was about. Perhaps I rushed it. FairDinkum (talk) 05:41, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Yes it is quite the arduous task I know. Who knew simple typing was so hard. I mean having to count "1 colon, 2 colon, 3 colons, 4!" Once I hit 10 colons I have to take my shoes off but by the time I remember how to undo my shoelaces I have forgotten why I started. Acei9 06:31, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Says the guy who finds it so difficult to read text without paragraphs that he has to make that deficiency known. FairDinkum (talk) 10:05, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
It's not a matter of can't it's that no one wants to sit there and read a giant wall of text. Acei9 21:15, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
The simple answers - copy previous colon-series, paste, add a colon, or start your line with '(reset)' Anna Livia (talk) 11:35, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
If the author couldn't be arsed to learn basic writing skills that every 5th grader is expected to know, they probably don't know enough to make a coherent argument.
As for addiction and harm, addiction is NOT solely "self-harm". Have you ever met the children of addicts? Often, those kids are fucked for life in a myriad of ways. Go ahead, tell someone whose family member was hit by a drunk driver that the drunkard was only harming himself. Tell the mugging victim that the mugger was the "real" or "only" victim because they needed to fund their drug habit. CorruptUser 14:41, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Mugging can be reduced to poverty, and also because so-called "junkies" are marginalized by society. If people are desperate they're going to resort to desperate measures. This is why we should stop treating addiction as something criminal, and instead as the pathology it's supposed to be. Stuff like safe injection sights, or the decriminalization or legalization of drugs, would go a long way towards solving this problem. News flash: the War on Drugs was a failure. The plants won. VeeMeow? 18:18, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
'Addiction is defined as not having control over doing, taking or using something to the point where it could be harmful to you.' this, i repeat. is the definition used by the NHS. how exactly is this complicated? AMassiveGay (talk) 19:45, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
And when a middle-class person loses their job because of drug addictions, and turns to crime to pay for their habit? It's not as simple as "poverty"; even the wealthy have their lives destroyed by drug addictions. Sure, it takes longer to spend all their money on drugs, but there addicts who used to be millionaires. As for society "marginalizing" junkies, sorry not sorry. Can you honestly say you would take a junkie/alcoholic as a roommate? Because I wouldn't; every addict, if untreated, will become a habitual liar at best. More often, they "borrow" your stuff, and in the worst case...
I think Portugal has the right idea when it comes to drug addictions. But don't pretend that drugs aren't a serious problem. CorruptUser 20:11, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
That attitude in and of itself is an example of the marginalization of the addicted, ironically enough... Also, where did I say drugs aren't a problem? All I said was that our current societal approach to drugs is a failure, and we need to rethink our approach. Just like our approach to addiction itself is a failure. VeeMeow? 20:33, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
I know a few “junkies” in my life that I definitely would rather have as roommates than you Cory. If you actually get to know folks who struggle with drug addiction you’ll come to realize they are actually a diverse group of people with a diverse group of needs. They don’t all fit into the one mold of a destructive unreliable liar. I know folks who completed college and paid their rent on time while struggling with hard drugs. Rather them than you, because unlike you they don’t strike me as a garbage human being. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 20:52, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
There are recreational chemical users who aren't "addicts", there are "addicts" who don't use recreational chemicals, and there are people who manage to fuck up their lives with none of these. I'd probably take the "halfway" end (the functional semi-addicted user) over, say, rooming with a religious fanatic. (Religious fanaticism can fuck you up pretty good, too.) I'm not sure what the point is here, TBH. BobJohnson (talk) 21:10, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
I know how you interact with others on this website; your disapproval fills me with pride, and when it comes to roommates I'll just have to content myself in the knowledge that I can afford my own apartment and don't need to worry about roommates. CorruptUser 06:06, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Yes, fuck the poors. "I'm better than you because I have money and you don't." VeeMeow? 06:18, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

Mmhmm. Don't swing at me if you can't take a jab or two. CorruptUser 07:04, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Weird flex, but K. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 19:56, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
You could have the same flex too someday, if you take my advice re: grad school. Even if you don't get in this time, that doesn't mean you can't audit the classes for free, make friends with the professors so you'll be a shoe-in next year. CorruptUser 20:50, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

i fucking hate fox news[edit]

that fucking " news " network makes my ears bleed just hearing it, and as a bi sexual it just hurts even more, (sry if this is out of place for me just needed to vent) wheelsontheancomsay hey 19:44, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

When i'm scrolling, minding my own business in the good old google news, the one outlet i avoid is fox. Nothing good out of it... Servasym (Talk / Contribs) 20:35, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Is there a reason you keep creating all these topics? CorruptUser 20:37, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Well, it's the Bar... This is kind of the go-to place to discuss inane bullshit on this wiki. VeeMeow? 20:43, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
(pssst... they have been making a lottt of new sections here, maybe more than from any other user in particular, so do we actually have anything substantial against making a new thread like this what seems like every other day now?) Servasym (Talk / Contribs) 20:46, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
If they are engaging in conversation in good faith, no, more parlance is gooder. But when they start a topic and rarely return to it, that raises a few eyebrows. CorruptUser 20:52, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Meh - it's the saloon bar. I think you'd struggle to find a reason to stop people posting here with inane nonsense as long as they aren't insulting anyone or derailing threads. Acei9 20:57, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Pretty much, but it's always worth considering who is the OP so I know if they are looking for a genuine response and all... CorruptUser 21:02, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Yes, hence the handful of templates we've created for certain users over the years. {{Aneris}}, {{Ctroll}}, and {{Solipsism}} all exist for such things (though the latter two occasionally get used elsewhere). The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 00:33, 23 February 2023 (UTC)

What do you think of this channel?[edit]

The channel link is here I really hate this YouTuber I think he is an incel and conspiracy theorist — Unsigned, by: Edward the eight / talk / contribs

Another generic conspiracy goon. No opinion. VeeBark at me 08:10, 19 February 2023 (UTC)
Have you at least watched his videos? By his titles, he seems to me like a typical red pill 4chanite Youtuber. ASerb (talk) 08:28, 19 February 2023 (UTC)
So? They're not exactly rare... FairDinkum (talk) 11:03, 19 February 2023 (UTC)
There's definitely some doom-and-gloom Mad Libs in the titles. So many videos with the "Why {object} Is Collapsing: The Coming {adjective} Crisis" title.
In Serbia there are dozens of channels like that, but with videos longer than an hour. Not only that, they are also conspirational, pseudoscientific and have mostly religious and nationalist anti-Western view.
EDIT: They have a very cynical view towards Western values and most claim that the West is collapsing and are in favor of Russia. This worldview is dominant in the Serbian political sphere, at least on YouTube. When I search about the West in my language, it's mostly negative.ASerb (talk) 16:32, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Another template, of course, is "{Movie} tried to warn you", with most of the movies being shit that the walking "neckbeard" stereotype seems to be obsessed with, like The Matrix, Fight Club, American Psycho, etc. You just won't get those 4Chan clicks any other way, I guess. Y'know, though, someone really should try some titles in this template that are more relevant to current politics. Like, say: "Idiocracy Tried To Warn You". Or: "Dr. Strangelove Tried To Warn You". How about: "The Great DictatorWikipedia Tried To Warn You", that's depressingly still relevant these days. Probably won't get the clicks, though, 'tis a shame. BobJohnson (talk) 18:55, 19 February 2023 (UTC)
I hate all of YouTube: it easily solves the problem of do I hate YouTuber X. There's a longshot US Supreme Court case coming up against YouTube/Google/Alphabet regarding YouTube's hosting terrorist videos in connection with the 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris.[8] I don't hold up much hope for the bought-and-paid-for extremists on the court to hold corporations liable for corporate misdeeds. An opinion writer on WaPo, who should know better, actually thinks that Republican judges can be shamed.[9] Bongolian (talk) 20:12, 19 February 2023 (UTC)
Moon is already listed under RationalWiki:Webshites/Politics since 8 September 2021. Also Moon is a plagiarist and was called out by Overlord Gaming, the person he plagiarized. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xd3clVfijE I wonder how many other people Moon has plagiarized. (talk) 23:10, 19 February 2023 (UTC)


I'd Moon is In Webshites Politics then Jake Tran should be there too since he scams people ←§ Edward the eight (talk) 06:56, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
just wanna say webshites is...webshite AMassiveGay (talk) 11:31, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

Am I the only one here who doesn't have a problem with Youtube? I don't think Youtube itself is the problem, it's the creators therein. Some will be reliable, others not so much. Rebecca Watson's main platform nowadays is Youtube, for instance. VeeMeow? 00:51, 20 February 2023 (UTC)

Youtube is more than a bunch of videos that you can choose to watch, it is also a company that profits from dangerous lies and material that incites violence. When people talk about hating Youtube they are not talking about videos that tell you how to fix your plumbing. FairDinkum (talk) 12:39, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
No Vee, I am delighted by YouTube. It provides information about every practical subject. I recently learned how to remove a wasp nest from the wall of my house. Also, it gives me an idea of who thinks what. People who express false ideas get a robust "don't like" from me. I also tell them what I think of them. People talk about hating the hate. You know, I really hate that.DocYankemPrevent Truth Decay!
I don't pay much heed to political stuff on YouTube. I spend a lot of time there, but I'm typically watching gaming videos. Luigifan18 (talk) 04:26, 24 February 2023 (UTC)

Victim blaming[edit]

Putin's speech. Anna Livia (talk) 11:36, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

Except for the threats if long-range weapons are given to Ukraine and deciding to leave that treaty against nuclear weapon proliferation, looks much more like as something for internal consumption in Russia than anything else. Panzerfaust (talk) 14:25, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Yep. However, see this as building the rhetoric of the new Russian 'Forever War', where the narod shall be thrown into the meat-grinder to 'fertilise' the soil their artillery has pounded into a wasteland until the Motherland is victorious in defending itself against the weak, decadent West who have lots of clout and aren't caving.
The near-term is truly depressingly obvious; that like the Iran-Iraq war or earlier WW1, the Russian Bear is going to have to be bled white so it falls over and accepts that it's neigbours are not their colonies. Thus, we need to continue giving Kyiv the means to help the bleed and avoiding their bleeding as much as possible. KarmaPolice (talk) 14:59, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Ukraine is burning through ammunition faster than the US and NATO can produce it and the US is not sure they will be able to supply Ukraine with enough ammunition during key phases of the war in 2023. There was a serious lack of NATO planning and preparation before this war and in 2022. Titus Silver (talk) 16:06, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Sigh, predictable cherry-picking troll is predictable.
Here's my cherry pick of the day: Russia Could Collapse Into 'New States' After Ukrainian Victory: Economist. The root of this article is just one guy's Substack blog (a Chatham HouseWikipedia associate fellow, so not just a random guy on the web, but still). But there is at least a somewhat similar historical precedent for such thoughts... BobJohnson (talk) 16:22, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
(EC)There has been quite a lot of discussion in the media about the West's ammunition shortage. But it's difficult to imagine the corrupt Russian state is in any better position.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 16:26, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
I actually had a nightmare a few nights ago that Putin actually won. The editor who used to be Andrew5, and is now (talk) 16:58, 21 February 2023 (UTC).
"Russia is using 50-year-old ammunition and dismantling breast pumps and kitchen appliances to get microchips it needs for tanks and precision-guided weapons, officials say." Yeah, current reporting says Wagner Group is low on ammo. DocYankemPrevent Truth Decay!
Interesting. "Russian ammunition shortage" gets lots of hits as a search. Clearly neither side was really prepared for this war. But with multiple lines of sanctions imposed against it, Russia has got to be hurting in production. And while Russia is undeniably big (though with large cold empty bits), Ukraine really has multiple supply lines which include just about the whole of Europe and the US along with whatever NATO (and Ukraine) can source globally.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 20:14, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Money means nothing in a country that can turn its workforce into slaves on a whim; this comes down to whether can actually produce the weapons at home. Russia has chemical plants, and while yes, a lot of the source for that was Ukraine itself, I'm sure they still have enough to pump out unlimited bullets, and have the oil reserves for all their fuel needs. They'll be short on guided missiles, because they don't produce microchips, but they won't want for bullets and tank shells... CorruptUser 20:25, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
However, the corruption in Russia is so endemic that one can seriously question whether or not Russian industry is up to snuff with supplying the demand created by the invasion. VeeMeow? 20:36, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

(reset) I am not particularly interested in Putin - just that he presently/intermittently is more RW-missional than much in the news (Nicola Sturgeon is 'north of the border' so an element of the West Lothian question applies). Anna Livia (talk) 20:54, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

Putin's speech today essentially was the same whoppers of a Big Lie that he's been repeating for a year now. (False neo-Nazi accusations against Ukraine, laughable declarations that they are "doing everything in our power to solve this problem by peaceful means", major whataboutism, whining that they are the real victims, "We are not at war with the people of Ukraine" (hah hah!), even a violation of Godwin's law). The culture war shit in Putin's speech was a hoot. Rape and torture courtesy of Russian soldiers is a-okay I guess, because opposition to those gosh darn homosexuals makes one Moral and High and Mighty. For some reason .BobJohnson (talk) 21:57, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Both sides were unprepared, but when it comes to it the needle is swinging back towards Russia on the simple fact Putin is preparing for the 'forever war', but NATO is not. From as far as I can tell, we are not ramping up matériel production etc but Russia is rapidly moving towards a full-scale 'war economy'. '23 is going to be a very hard year for the Ukranians, and this will be partly our [the West's] fault due to our unwillingness to accept the truly unpleasant/depressing truth that it was going to be a long, drawn out and corpse-laden war [which honestly became obvious to military persons after the failure of the initial blitzkrieg, Putin's doubling-down on the goal and charts showing ammo etc consumption rates] and ramp up production, logistics etc to [like in the two world wars] 'keep 'em firing'. KarmaPolice (talk) 22:40, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Putin IS the corruption. Or at least, he's a huge part of it. Basically, Gazprom was a completely unknown company that somehow bought up the whole of Russia's gas supply. Every cubic meter of gas pumped to the EU is a a few euro-cents pumped directly to Putin's personal bank accounts. Half the reason for this war is because the Black Sea has a fuqton of natural gas, and Putin could lose billions in net worth if Ukraine were to remain in possession of the fields. So there's an urgency for Putin to not just control Crimea but the entire coastline.
However, the Russian people have only backed Putin because for the first time in their lives they have real money and can buy real goods; take those away, and all bets are off. CorruptUser 06:15, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
So what is the attitude of 'the reindeer herders' of Russia's far eastern parts of Siberia, for whom 'Ukraine' #is# a far-away country of which they know little, where there is no taiga? Anna Livia (talk) 10:46, 23 February 2023 (UTC)
Point of order; you're wrong on Gazprom, Corrupt. It was not 'a completely unknown company that somehow bought up the whole of Russia's gas supply'. It was an old Soviet national monopoly company which managed to use it's heft and connections to avoid being broken up in the '90s and as a 'key national asset' the state had always kept a golden share when privatised. Not that forgivable, as it's all laid out in it's WP page. Lastly, a lot of Russians don't really have 'real money' - income inequality in the land makes America look almost like socialists [I love it when folks seem to forget 'full shops' mean fuck all if some 50% of the population cannot ever afford the items within]. What has happened is that like the '70s the Russians have managed to establish a 'vaguely-okay' SoL on the backs of natural resource values [esp oil/gas]. Now, it's somewhat difficult to compare like with like, but all the [pre-War] SoL/QoL indexes put Russia about the same as China. KarmaPolice (talk) 03:02, 24 February 2023 (UTC)

What do you think of this Website[edit]

https://www.atajew.com/?m=1. Looks like muslim version of Jew watch ←§ Edward the eight (talk) 16:03, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

Looks basically like an old-school green ink website that applies standard conspiracy theory tropes ("Jews! Freemason! Gay!") to Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, founder of the modern Turkey nation. I guess some folks or a person (likely Islam-Turkey-nationalist, I'd bet) is pretty pissed that Atatürk founded a secular state, it seems, so I'd say this is more a lame attempt at historical revisionism in an extremely childish ham-fisted manner.
I see that in 2007 there was some similar accusations on the talk page of Atatürk's Wiki (with the Jewish accusations in particular swatted down very quickly). I wonder if some of this, in part, is reflective of the rise of Islamic nationalism of Turkey (best reflected by the rise of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the AKP). Articles seem to suggest that Atatürk is still widely revered by the Turkish, so this website is probably extreme fringe bullshit even now. However, Atatürk's advocacy of secularism seems to be a bit of a thorn with the recent Islamic nationalist trend; Erdoğan seems to prefer espousing mythology from the Ottoman Empire side of Turkish history instead.BobJohnson (talk) 16:46, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
https://www.atajew.com/?m=0 This page is even worse it looks even more green ink and the site links to a 9/11 truther website. https://www.atajew.com/2000/03/faq.html?m=1

In its FAQ it says that it's not a hate site ←§ Edward the eight (talk) 16:57, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

Yeah, well, very few sites claim that they are. Rarely will you see a site explicitly state-- in the FAQ or anywhere else-- anything like, say, "This site is primarily here to disseminate anti-semitic bilge, jihadist nonsense, and racially divisive bullshit". Kencolt (talk) 03:36, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
Per the other WikiWikipedia as well as a small blurb in RW's Judaism page, "Dönmeh" (which, you know, appears in the website header), along with the Freemason stuff (same), is one of the major canards of Turkish antisemitism. So it doesn't really matter what the FAQ says, this site says what they are loud and clear. BobJohnson (talk) 04:13, 24 February 2023 (UTC)

we need a page about Diogenes[edit]

like fr fr i would love a ratwiki take on him, i would do it, but i know nothing on how to make a page like that. wheelsontheancomsay hey 15:45, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

FWIW he was a pompous holier-than-thou jerk. At least a few RWers would probably relate to him. FairDinkum (talk) 08:27, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Added here. I think Pythagoras (who ran a proto-communist bean-worship cult in addition to his math) would also be a nice addition but one thing at a time. Chillpilled (talk) 04:49, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

I am a clown.[edit]

Some Teenagers apparently can cut themselves compulsively but here I am at 27 and I can’t even break skin. I am a pathetic joke. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 05:12, 24 February 2023 (UTC)

Dude, unless this is just some sick joke, you shouldn't be concerned with being unable to break your skin or talking about it on RW. You should go seek help. Therapy exists, psychiatrists exist, and so on. Not sure what kind of reaction you expected, but either way, don't do this, it's not going to make you feel any better. RedAvenger98 (talk) 05:31, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
Great pep talk. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 05:46, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
I'm not explicitly trying to cheer you up. Obviously I want you to get better and not hurt yourself, but neither I nor most people here, if any, are capable of giving you what you need. I looked down at Ace's reply, and yeah, he sums it up. We can't actually do anything to help you. You need to take that first step yourself. I don't know which country you hail from, but most of the likely ones have some service akin to the Suicide Hotline. In the US, you simply dial 988. Not sure how it works in other places, but you can easily find that out with a quick Google search. You need to take the initiative. Talking to a bunch of skeptics who shit on conservatives and political extremism and the like in hopes of them giving pity will not help you. Getting actual help will. RedAvenger98 (talk) 10:25, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
I'm actually going to agree with Red here. Dude this isn't the first time you have made posts like this here - RW isn't a substitute for proper support and RW is not in any position to provide any help you might require. Please seek some help because, like I said, this isn't the first time and we are not equipped to assist. Acei9 05:54, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
I don’t remember asking for help but these condescending responses really bring out the hope. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 07:14, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
It's not condescending. You posted previously about having depressive issues which were concerning then and now this so my advice is to not seek advice on RW. This community cannot help with this. We're your friends but we aren't professionals. I'm a 42 year old borderline alcoholic - I'll be your friend but you start telling me about cutting then you need more than I have. Acei9 07:33, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
'I understand that' some people use fanfic/original fiction and deliberately transferring their own issues to the characters as a means of exploring, handling and even resolving such matters. Anna Livia (talk) 11:31, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
Again, bruh, you can always do something about your life. A while back you mentioned grad school. Did you consider my advice? CorruptUser 17:00, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
Except that's not always a feasible option. VeeMeow? 22:48, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
It's... not a feasible option to ask if you can audit the courses? OSD had said they wanted to go to grad school but the fear was not getting in. That implies that OSD has the time/money for grad school, just not the acceptance letter. If that's the case, auditing courses is not out of the question. CorruptUser 03:48, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
I have negative balance in my bank account currently I was going to pay for grad school through taking out student loans. I am not taking out a full loan just to audit courses for no credit. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 05:51, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

Filtration Camps[edit]


Russia has been operating "Filtration Camps" which they pass off as checkpoints. The reality is more akin to the Nazi Concentration Camps or the Soviet Gulags. How are Ukrainians the Nazis in this conflict? Is there something that I am missing? Apparently this was done in the Chechen Wars and were also crimes against humanity.

Slava Ukraine from the United States. --Sexy Trans Zombie (talk) 21:43, 21 February 2023 (UTC)

"How are Ukrainians the Nazis in this conflict?" Simple, anything the Kremlin says goes. People need to realize modern Russia is not the USSR. VeeMeow? 21:47, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
I guess that wrapping my mind around Kremlin logic will get me nowhere; much like wrapping my mind around Republican logic. Probably impossible. --Sexy Trans Zombie (talk) 23:13, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
The Nazi thing refers to the Ukranian Azov Regiment, which was primarily populated with Nazis and probably still is, but they have valiantly defended Ukraine against the Russian invasion which now makes them national heroes and apparently part of the 'good guys' in western propaganda. FairDinkum (talk) 08:32, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
The Azov regiment may have some questions to answer - certainly historically. But if Putin's speeches are to be believed then the whole of western society is composed of Nazis, gays and drug addicts depending on his focus.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 11:22, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
And it is probably lost on him that if the west is composed of lots of gays, that means gay people in the west feel accepted and safe enough to live openly as gay. As for drug addicts, isn't Russia ground zero for the Krokodil epidemic? I suppose he's right about Nazi's though, having played a huge part in facilitating them. FairDinkum (talk) 11:56, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
If you 'adjust' your mindset you can vaguely get what Putin means with the 'Nazis' claim, and it doesn't require outright doublethink. Three points to consider;
1 - Ukraine banned 'left-wing' parties; either after the 2014 invasion or the 2022 one. 'Who bans such parties? Nazis!' Truth; such parties were heavily riddied with Neo-Sovietism and/or pro-Russian supporters, and thus were banned as fifth columns.
2 - After 1991, Ukraine followed a level of Ukrainisation, something which accelerated after 2014. Old Soviet motifs [statues to Lenin] came down, the Ukrainian language got a revival in the official realms, place-names started to flip [Kiev became Kyiv]. 'The Russian minority are being oppressed! Who does such a thing? Nazis!' Truth; it is more an 'Derussification' than anything else; simply allowing Ukraianian 'parity'. Being a Russian-native speaker doesn't preclude you from seeing yourself as fully Ukrianian - just ask Zelenskyy.
3 - Ukrainian historians, politicians etc have plied the revisionist art on such figures as Bandera, 'honouring' and giving veteran status to Nazi collaborators like the Ukrainian Insurgent Army etc. 'Of course Nazis would do things like this for old/dead Nazis!' Truth; there is a good point here. Ukraine does need to have an honest and frank discussion [with herself] over this, but has been unable to because of the rather weak state of her existence since independence [for various reasons].
KarmaPolice (talk) 12:44, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Tell that to Serbs. Most will outright dismiss it, cuz "Murica bad, Russia good". Or will only point out Western hipocricy. I am one of Serbs who don't think like that.
Regarding Bandera, most nationalist Serbs sanctify Dragoljub Mihailović.
EDIT: Whoops. I meant the other guy.ASerb (talk) 20:10, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
Homosexuals were one of many noteworthy persecuted groups under the actual regime of Hitler, one of the many ironies of Putin's speeches that throw the "Nazi" label on anything West, while speaking approvingly of concepts actual fascists embraced in the 1930s. It's far easier for me to "adjust my mindset" and see that Putin has implemented a distinctive brand of "fascism" style government in Russia. Many other commentators have. BobJohnson (talk) 13:20, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
That's the 'normal setting' for me. And I suspect 'Nazi' and 'fascist' may not be synonymous in the Russian mindset. Lastly, political education in Russia has never been accurate or even that deep. I suspect that if you went out to 'provincial Russia' with a clipboard to ask what 'Nazi' means, I suspect the majority will say either 'pure evil' and/or 'the fuckers who invaded in 1941'. Actual definitions of govt forms/policies etc don't get a look in. KarmaPolice (talk) 13:39, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
What I say above in a related thread - what do the reindeer herders of the far eastern Siberian taiga think about such matters? Anna Livia (talk) 11:34, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
A Russian friend of mine says that Putin himself isn't an ultranationalist, he's just a "cynical neoliberal." He does however cultivate the Russian ultranat movement for his own gain. VeeMeow? 20:45, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
I personally think Putin's simply a cynical autocrat who never started out with much 'ideology' whatsoever. However, I strongly suspect has he's aged he's been brooding more and more over 'legacy' and this [as well as his increasing social conservatism and well, hubris and megalomania] has increasingly 'become the mask' aka has genuinely been getting high on his own supply aka 'Czar Vladimir the Great'. KarmaPolice (talk) 21:33, 22 February 2023 (UTC)
ive been under the impression putin has been shaped by the chaos after the fall of the soviet union and the resultant 'hiumiliation' of russia turning him into an ultranationalist and autocrat AMassiveGay (talk) 09:23, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
Putin's 'formative years' would have been the Soviet '70s, and would have been in his late 30s for the epoch-ending period of '85-'92 [if I remember right, he was in E Germany when the Berlin Wall fell]. I think the autocratic elements were always in here - remember, the KGB was the 'Pretorian Guard' of the Party, with it's own armed forces. What's more, the Soviet Union was after c1928 very autocratic in nature, save the period in the 50s under Khrushchev.
As for the Russian ultranationalism... well, our young Putin would have had a whole bottle's worth as a kid. The place after c1935 had become very nationalistic [also, socially conservative], albeit under the fig-leaf of 'Soviet patriotism'. But like 'British', many non-Russians in the Union complained it was just disguised Russification and Russian nationalism.
My personal guess is that while Putin's view of the ending of the 'Second Empire' at the time shall be relatively unknown, his experience of the '90s led him to double-down on the lessons/views of youth. And like almost any autocrat, his learned that nationalism is a very easy drug to push on the masses. KarmaPolice (talk) 12:15, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

Is the "noble savage" stereotype right, wrong or what?[edit]

Firstly, we have those french chronicles by Bafon de Lahotan (apparently praised by some athropologists as a "realistic" depiction): https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Voyages_to_North_America Then, some pair of BoN in Talk:Noble Savage are counter-criticising the concept as some kind of sealioning by Imperialist Eurocentrics (I guess...) However, who has the last word? Is there any consensus towards academics? Deadend (talk) 21:21, 24 February 2023 (UTC)

If you articulate specifically what you mean by "the noble savage stereotype" in a way that can be checked against reality, its rightness, wrongness, or whatness could be checked against reality. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 21:30, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
It's not even wrong. Hunter-gatherer societies were and are a lot more egalitarian (and to an extent communistic) than civilizations are, but on an individual level hunter-gatherers are still human. Hoarding is seen as a crime by many hunter-gatherer societies precisely because some people selfishly hoard, at the expense of the group. What would normally be considered negative behavior is incentivized under capitalism. The reality is that human "nature," if it even exists, isn't a simple thing. It can't be reduced to statements like "humans are naturally evil" or "humans are naturally good," and resorting to the "human nature" argument is in a way an appeal to nature fallacy. VeeMeow? 22:34, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
Oh, it exists. It is just difficult to pin down. The argument is only a fallacy if you argue it must be right or good because it is natural. Big difference from: it is unavoidable or difficult to eliminate because people naturally do it. Ariel31459 (talk) 23:47, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
A good "compare and contrast" for the Noble Savage stereotype is Orientalism. Generally speaking, I see this trope happening when something borrows bowlderized, often romanticized stereotypes and over-generalizations of a different culture. Like Orientalism, this culture is often presented as primitive and inferior to the West, but not without merit. Like Orientalism, it can teeter between things which are outright imperialism / "Manifest destiny" on one end, and a sort of naive culture worship / appeal to the primitive on the other. For the natives on the later end in modern times, there is a lot of appeal to nature stuff floating around as part of the trope. (Modern Orientalism in the West tends to be expressed through New Age type eclecticism).
I tend to associate both of these more with art, music, and other media than anything else, which is why both of these have TV Tropes articles. [10] [11] I'm not sure where the "sealioning imperialism" thing comes from, it's not all that way. Some art in fact uses the trope more to criticize modern Western civilization, as the song the TV Tropes "Noble Savage" quotes in the header does. (Andrews Sisters - Civilization) BobJohnson (talk) 00:36, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
@Ariel31459 That depends, do abstractions exist? Human "nature" exists in the same way money does, ie as a social construct. There's no hard physical rule saying that human nature and money are inviolable physical forces in the same way that gravity or electromagnetism are. At least with money you can point to a coin and say "this is a real thing, even if the value we assign to it is made up." Human "nature" is even more nebulous than money.
Either way, the existence of socioeconomic models other than capitalist self-interest shows that human "nature", if such a thing even exists, isn't the end-all-be-all of human societies and how people work. This isn't hard blank-slatism so much as to say that culture is also a relevant factor to play here, alongside a whole host of other factors that the inherently vague "human nature" can't adequately explain beyond being a tautology. That brings up another question. If it is "difficult to pin down," what academic utility does it actually possess? VeeMeow? 00:47, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
Social constructs are diffusions of human tendencies that could be framed as being natural. Human nature is not only an abstraction but also a set of descriptions of what humans are like. Not all societies have had money. All may have bartered, I suppose, but it is not instinctive, I think. Human nature is exemplified by a wide variety of of tendencies. The tendency to appreciate beauty, for example. That is not really a construct, but an innate tendency. Language itself is part of human nature. It has been shown that single individuals have invented their own language because they were isolated from other humans.The variety expressed by the various kinds of language accounts for the difficulty of organizing linguistic theory, various as the individual shapes of living things. But, to satisfy your concern, I don't think human nature makes any ideal impossible. Just some more likely than others.Ariel31459 (talk) 01:26, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
Is that necessary to being classified as "human"? Take, for example, people suffering from vegetative or minimally conscious disorders, who by definition are incapable of "appealing to beauty" or linguistic cognition. What about GenieWikipedia, a poor girl traumatized, isolated from humanity until she was 13 and despite tremendous progress in linguistic ability, was never able to fully acquire a first language? Was she not human? If "language" is a defining feature of what it is to be human, and there are people incapable of language, where does that leave us? Furthermore, if biology is the defining limiter of human "nature" (whatever that may be), why does that exclude technological and cultural evolution from overcoming those limitations, and if so, what does that say about human nature? VeeMeow? 01:44, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
No. Human nature is a family of behaviors. If some people are unable to acquire cultural artifacts because of injuries or defects, that is simply a misfortune. It is not meant to be exclusionary. We are speaking of tendencies. I don't think I have been addressing your concerns exactly. One girl who had problems learning a language is not really relevant to the normative situations people face. I never claimed biology was somehow responsible for limiting human progress. Maybe that was someone else. I only claim that humans have similarities that distinguish them from other primates. Some of them, like the tendency to learn a language, are innate. Ariel31459 (talk) 02:05, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── @Vee, I find these word games about whether human nature exists silly. As are many claims about what human nature is, which often fall into categories of bad philosophy or made-up claims. Asserting there's no human nature is rather like asserting there's nothing distinguishing humans from, say, dogs, or, say, from potatoes. The three natures in question are in large part studied through natural sciences, and understood in such terms, not too nebulous. For human nature, there's however also social sciences, and also lots and lots of philosophizing, complicating matters, especially since so much of philosophy is just nonsense.

Looking at some examples from above of claims about human nature, your initial "...but on an individual level hunter-gatherers are still human" definitely appeals to the existence of human nature. There's no way around that. But I fully agree with you that human nature can't be "reduced to statements like 'humans are naturally evil' or 'humans are naturally good'." Doing so is an example of bad/nonsense philosophy, very popular but also very vacuous. The 'evil' and 'good' in question are examples of something you mention, vague and ill-defined socially constructed abstractions. Problems easily appear whenever claims are made which assign such to more concretely real categories, which I would argue includes the in large part biology-and-behavior based human nature.

On noble savages, I don't have many thoughts. The stereotype seems to have developed in part as a reaction to the "not-so-noble savage" stereotype, in the way that cultural and 'counter-cultural' ideas often do. Both stereotypes are bad/limited in the way that stereotypes are by the nature of what a stereotype is. The "noble savage" stereotype is however associated less with bloody and unpleasant things historically, and so, to many it doesn't "morally smell" as badly. It still obscures reality, though, like any stereotype. And the argument for it being bad seems to in large part consist in pointing out that it's just a stereotype. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 16:16, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

Progress & Regress Pokémon[edit]

Hey, remember when I shared my ideas for a pair of Pokémon based on RationalWiki and Conservapedia? Yeah, I'm serious about making that happen. In fact, I'm currently trying to build a full suite of Progress and Regress Pokémon — gameplay-wise, the groups will be based on the Paradox Pokémon from Pokémon Scarlet & Violet, but lore-wise, I want the Progress Pokémon to be based on things that RationalWiki supports and/or endorses (rationalism, renewable energy, liberal ideology, etc.) and the Regress Pokémon to be based on things RationalWiki opposes and/or condemns (bigotry, alternative medicine, fascism, etc.). Does anyone have any ideas they can help me out with? Luigifan18 (talk) 16:21, 18 February 2023 (UTC)

You're going to create your own Pokémon ROM? Arcadium Trancefer (talk) 19:22, 18 February 2023 (UTC)
I don't have the skillset to do that, sadly. Luigifan18 (talk) 19:48, 18 February 2023 (UTC)
But you do have the skillset to make great edits! FairDinkum (talk) 11:04, 19 February 2023 (UTC)
Thanks, but I really do want help on making the Progress and Regress Pokémon in particular. I'm trying to build them as two parallel chains where each link in the chain is an embodiment of some thing or set of things that RationalWiki endorses (for the Progress Pokémon) or opposes (for the Regress Pokémon), and each has super-effective STAB on and is heavily resistant to the STAB of the immediately higher link in the opposite chain (with complete immunity being substitutable for super-effectiveness). The top links in each chain are the Pokémon I discussed in the previous thread, Azureality (a Psychic/Electric-type donkey/goat-hybrid that represents rationality, science, and RationalWiki as a whole) and Crimsolusion (a Poison/Ground elephant/eagle-hybrid that represents denialism, conservatism, and fascism). The second links in each chain are Dawseculab, a Steel/Flying-type representing controlled experimentation (and, yes, it is named after Richard Dawkins; also, its Steel/Flying-type renders it immune to Poison and Ground attacks, while it will have Psychic-type coverage moves to hit Crimsolusion hard) and Cleragate, a Ground/Dark-type representing fundamentalism (it's immune to Psychic and Electric-type moves and can hit those types super-effectively with its STAB). The third links are Ratitchepy, a Bug/Fairy-type representing hippies, "give peace a chance", and protest movements (and, yes, I named it after Christopher Hitchens; its typing makes it resistant to both Ground and Dark, and both of its types can hit Dark super-effectively… I had a hard time choosing between Bug/Fighting, Bug/Fairy, Grass/Fighting, and Grass/Fairy for that one) and Koallution, a Fire/Electric-type representing the fossil fuel industry (Fire is super-effective on Steel, Electric is super-effective on and resistant to Flying, and both Fire and Electric resist Steel). I think the next links will be either a Ground/Rock or Ground/Water-type Progress Pokémon to counter Koallution and either a Flying/Poison, Fire/Steel, Fire/Flying, or Poison/Steel Regress Pokémon to counter Ratitchepy, though I'm not quite sure what their names or themes would be yet (well, the Progress Pokémon would probably be renewable energy to contrast Koallution's fossil fuel theme). But see what I'm going for here? The Progress and Regress Pokémon are locked in a sort of Lensman Arms Race where each of their members perfectly counters a member of the opposite side and is in turn countered by another member of the opposite side, which prevents either side from completely crushing the other, so the idea behind a hypothetical game revolving around them would be that they're both looking for new recruits (like, say, an up-and-coming Trainer) to tip the balance in their favor.
As another note, one thing I'm trying to do with the Progress Pokémon in the spirit of their collectively representing rationalism and RationalWiki is to strip as much supernatural stuff out of them as is feasible. Azureality's only a Psychic-type because out of all Pokémon types, Psychic-type Pokémon tend to be the most intelligent, logical, and rational (as seen in representatives like Alakazam, Metagross, and Orbeetle), so the Psychic-type in Pokémon is (ironically) aligned with logic and rationalism. The Progress Pokémon are still Pokémon, so they'll be doing some supernatural things, but I really want them to adhere to materialism and scientifically-viable methodology as much as possible. They can still use moves like Flamethrower, Surf, Thunderbolt, Ice Beam, Earthquake, Solar Beam, and Dazzling Gleam because those can be explained scientifically, but more supernatural moves like Aura Sphere, Shadow Ball, and Dark Pulse will be a lot iffier (Psychic-type moves only get a pass because the Progress Pokémon put such huge emphasis on critical thinking and properly using the brain, and even then, only for a few of them). As such, the Progress Pokémon have a shared signature move called "Skeptic's Scourge", which is a Normal-type move that hits Psychic-, Ghost-, Dragon-, and Fairy-type Pokémon super-effectively (and, yes, the super-effectiveness on Ghost-types does override the Ghost-type's usual immunity to Normal-type moves) — those four types are generally the most supernatural and thus the most readily destroyed by skepticism. However, for the sake of balance, I'm also thinking that Skeptic's Scourge is not very effective on Normal- and Bug-type Pokémon because those types are generally the least supernatural. Incidentally, this gives Azureality a way to deal with Psychic- and Ghost-type Pokémon that doesn't require it to use unscientific nonsense like Shadow Ball or Dark Pulse. And, yes, the Regress Pokémon also get a shared signature move. I'm calling it "Escape Hatch", and it's a Dark-type move that… confuses the target and switches the user out. Yeah, it's not as cool or as useful as Skeptic's Scourge, and that's intentional. I want the Progress Pokémon to have a slight advantage over the Regress Pokémon in order to reflect how, all other factors being equal, a rationalist society is going to be stronger, happier, and healthier than one that wallows in ignorance.
I've also come up with a sound-based special Fighting-type move named Coward's Bane — think a weaponized form of "Stop right there, criminal scum!" — just to be a special Fighting-type move that doesn't involve the use of qi or aura, so that Azureality (which has a specially-oriented stat spread) can smack aside Dark- and Steel-type Pokémon (as well as Rock-, Ice-, and Normal-types) without needing to use Aura Sphere or Focus Blast. Coward's Bane would have the gimmick of having below-average power by default, but getting stronger based on how many status buffs the target has and how many status moves they know. (Admittedly, the best justification I can come up with for how Coward's Bane would work is some "force of justice" mumbo-jumbo, but like I said, I can't strip the supernatural out of Pokémon completely, and at least Coward's Bane makes some scientific sense (loud noises can do real damage), unlike, again, Aura Sphere or Focus Blast.) Coward's Bane isn't unique to Azureality (it can also be learned by Absol, Lucario, Gardevoir, Gallade, Reshiram, Zekrom, Cobalion, Virizion, Terrakion, Keldeo, Kommo-o, Zacian, Zamazenta, and Calyrex, as well as some other Pokémon), but I still designed it with Azureality in mind. (I'm not totally happy with the name "Coward's Bane", so I'd like to know if anyone has any better ideas.) Anyways, I'm interested to hear what you think of what I'm doing and what I can do to make it work better. Luigifan18 (talk) 16:11, 20 February 2023 (UTC)
…Uh, hello? Anyone? Luigifan18 (talk) 04:23, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
wrong audienceAMassiveGay (talk) 09:26, 26 February 2023 (UTC)

Where, if anywhere, does this wireframe design come from?[edit]

I have this shirt from a band that I like and it has this design of an expanding wireframe globe in a grid, I feel like I’ve seen this design before but it might just be my mind messing with me. Does anyone know where this comes from or is it just their own original design that my brain tricked me into thinking it’s from something else?—WMS (talk) 17:01, 24 February 2023 (UTC)

Looks reminiscent of a Star Wars targeting computer display, though not an exact copy. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 21:28, 24 February 2023 (UTC)
why does it have to come from anywhere? wireframe designs all look kinda similar AMassiveGay (talk) 09:30, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
You do have a point, it’s just I thought I saw this design somewhere else, like I thought it had something to do with early astronomy (like a primitive version of a revolving earth or something) and was just curious if there was anything to that intuition.—WMS (talk) 05:01, 26 February 2023 (UTC)

It seems that most of you got the question in the poll wrong[edit]

Apparently, some people need to learn the difference between weight and mass. Plutocow (talk) 04:48, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

I'm the minority who recognized the trick question. Though it must be said, if you used silver or gold instead of lead the majority would be right. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 04:55, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
It says "which weighs more." A kilo is a kilo. If you'd've asked "which is more massive"... VeeMeow? 05:04, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
I agree with Vee. The majority is right. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 05:12, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
If both materials are weighed under equal conditions in a vacuum, they weigh the same. If weighed under equal conditions in an atmosphere or other fluid, the feathers will displace more air/fluid, so the lead will weigh more. The question does not specify measurement conditions, so the answer is ambiguous. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 05:37, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
I'll respond to meme spawned from Limmys Show with meme spawned from Futurama. :p BobJohnson (talk) 05:46, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
To quote Randall Monroe, communicating badly and then acting smug when you are misunderstood is NOT "cleverness". CorruptUser 08:54, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
But an (avoirdupois) pound of feathers would weigh more than a (troy) pound of gold (but ounce for ounce would be the reverse) Anna Livia (talk) 12:33, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

There's also the fact that the gravitational force gets weaker the farther apart two objects are, so since the lead is more dense, it is slightly heavier. The difference is infinitesimally small, but it is a reason why the lead would be heavier than feathers even if the masses are equal. Plutocow (talk) 14:02, 25 February 2023 (UTC)

The question is about "weight". Weight can only be calculated if there is gravity. So presumably the weight of the two objects in question has been calculated under the same gravitational conditions. The question states that weight of the two objects under (presumably) these same conditions is the same - and then asks if it's the same. I'm not sure what we are debating.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:29, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
Where you're going wrong is that kilograms are a unit of mass, not weight (as imperial pounds are). Plutocow (talk) 18:00, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
Well, that's really good to know. I was wrong about something and I have learned something. Thanks!Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:49, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
When you *weigh* something on a scale, though, you're typically (outside the US) going to get the result back in kilograms, even though scales measure weight and a kg is a measurement of mass. I don't think I've ever seen a scale that gives you newtons back.
If we are talking "common units on common measuring device", in other words, a "kilogram" of feathers will roughly weigh the same as a "kilogram" of lead. Because both scales, while they are displaying kg, they actually are reflecting roughly the same newton value (most common scales aren't terribly precise, because they don't need to be, so allow some "fudge room" here).
Technically, yes, a (mass) kg of feathers might have a different newton value than a (mass) kg of lead, but we are in ordinary conditions talking relatively trivial factors that might cause a slight difference (eg air displacement, gravitational field variations, etc.), usually meaning the mass kg of feathers are slightly lighter in weight than the mass kg lead. If you need to be super precise, this matters, but these are not factors most people think of when they are, say, weighing produce at the grocery store. BobJohnson (talk) 19:00, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
"talking relatively trivial factors that might cause a slight difference" Uncompressed down is about five times as dense as air, while lead is about ten thousand times as dense as air. In the video example with the bag of feathers and air on the scale, the bag with equal weight as the steel would have about 20% more mass (depending on specifics of feathers and packing), which may not be insignificant. Feathers have a very low bulk density, which can make usually-negligible factors important. If the weight is measured underwater, then buoyancy becomes ~1300x bigger, and a significant factor in weight vs mass even for metals. And there are engineering concerns where the buoyancy forces of liquid metals are important. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 10:05, 26 February 2023 (UTC)
Sure, it depends on how much error is "important". This has come up in other places, for example one constructed scenario here calculated ~0.77 "gram force" difference (eg feathers are lighter) in one type of test (other answers I've seen are similar). So if your acceptable tolerance is .1% or less, fudging it won't work, and I can imagine science / engineering cases where stuff like this absolutely matters. Most common scales though probably aren't that accurate (or if they are, how many people regularly calibrate their scales with a standard weight?), and a 1 gram / kilo fudge factor is probably acceptable. Still, if you really *do* have objects precisely calculated to be 1 kilogram mass (not 1 kg mass-force!), if you use the same scale to measure both feathers and steel (one followed by another), and the scale is precise enough, I imagine that gram force difference above will actually show up. BobJohnson (talk) 16:30, 26 February 2023 (UTC)
"calculated ~0.77 "gram force" difference" This uses a different setup than what I mentioned above (starting with equal mass rather than weight, not including the mass of the air entrained within it). At any rate, the question is not "does the weight difference exceed some threshold?" it's "which weighs more?". 192․168․1․42 (talk) 22:10, 26 February 2023 (UTC)

Weight can surprise you[edit]

Believe it or not, on earth a kilogram of lead does in fact weigh more than a kilogram of feathers. A kilogram is a measurement of mass, while weight is a measurement of force exerted upon a scale. The atmosphere will exert more buoyancy upon a collection of feathers than the same mass of lead, because the feathers have greater volume. If we change the question to "What weighs more, a kilogram of helium filled balloons, or a kilogram of lead?" then this factor becomes more obvious. If you want to measure the mass of an object based upon its weight, you have to make buoyancy corrections, even for dense things like steel or lead. I have to do it all the time at my job. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 12:02, 26 February 2023 (UTC)

Is Police Reform possible? If so, how?[edit]

Not really sure how to start this except that it's been on my mind a bit as I've heard all of these different perspectives on whether we can actually reform the police or not. I don't really think that it's a completely broken system, but we just need good people and good reform in order to make a policing system that actually works to protect people. Mostly I'm just wondering what people of this question and also what an ideal future would look like. StingraeyAngy 18:45, 31 January 2023 (UTC)

The core of American policing needs to be completely reimagined. The roots are based in violence and abuse toward minorities and poor people. If that is still there, reform will fail.-RipCityLiberal (talk) 20:11, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
Not towards minorities, at least not these days. However, definitely towards poor people... who are more likely to be minorities. But as everything in America, the only color that matters is green. CorruptUser 20:31, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
The first step is holding all crooked cops accountable for misdeeds. That would be a start. Mental health officers should be in all police departments for mental health emergencies. People with mental illness and other mental disabilities are often targeted by cops. There are a lot more to address. --Sexy Trans Zombie (talk) 20:52, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
The accountability will rarely apply to the actually corrupt cops, but rather, only those who fall afoul of politics and so forth. Ask any professional that has to submit to an ethics board; the people that make themselves known in the org and volunteer are virtually always given a slap on the wrist at worst whereas the unknowns get thrown under the bus.
As for mental health situations, well, can you actually point to the major incidents that would've called for a mental health professional instead? Because I don't think that a mental health professional would've been sent to arrest someone using counterfeit money or robbing a convenience store (George Floyd and Michael Brown). Heck, the latest major brutality with Tyre Nichols was over a traffic violation, and I don't think the mental health professionals are going to be the ones pulling people over. CorruptUser 21:20, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
16 times more likely to be killed by police this is a known problem and reform of the police is impossible or pointless without corresponding reforms in society at large AMassiveGay (talk) 23:19, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
the issue here is that as a result of deficient mental health services, a mental health crisis of an individual which ordinarily be a public health concern becomes a police concern. and us police have guns. AMassiveGay (talk) 23:26, 31 January 2023 (UTC)
My problem with police reform is that the activists have shown themselves completely incapable of being reasonable about this either. People were shrieking about Dolal Idd, Ma'Khia Bryant, and (this was especially egregious) Tekle Sundberg being shot (seriously, watch what self-proclaimed activists did to the woman who Sundberg was shooting at when police shot him). That Sundberg especially was undergoing some sort of mental health breakdown doesn't negate what he was doing in that moment. Plus, there's this delightful story; I work with people who have mental health issues, and I would never think to approach someone who has attacked someone with a staff multiple times and killed someone's dog without some sort of police protection. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:21, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
agreed blade. Someone please show me an (in)famous example of a call that, under the "defund police and fund mental health folks", wouldve been handled by said mental health folks. Every one of the major cases is a police fyckup, but one that did require the police in the first place. CorSock (talk) 01:55, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
In case it wasn't obvious, I want fewer police killings/injuries/threats. I'm a white man in a minority/majority area and I don't always care for how the police treat citizens (even white ones), but I have a Hispanic coworker who's still waiting for arrests in the murders or her son and (although in-law) pregnant niece. I'm totally on board with having a mental health specialist on hand for such things, I figure it's adding a non-lethal tool to the arsenal of law enforcement and therefore can be a huge asset. But yeah, none of the viral stories I've seen are the kinds where mental health specialists would've made much of a difference. The only high-profile story that could remotely fit into that narrative is this horrific killing of a man with Down syndrome, but (for reasons I think are self evident) that's totally unrepresentative of the great majority of police encounters involving mental health patients. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 02:51, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
There are six things which can be done to improve American policing, and they are all reforms advocated by [amongst others] responsible LEO's themselves. Nor are these overly 'political'.
1/ Abolishment of majority of agencies. Rationale; there is way too many of them. Not only does this produce chronically overlapping jurisdictions [and even worse, 'but I thought that was another's job' gaps in coverage] but way too many of them are simply too small to have decent training/hiring/management capabilities and a relative dearth of 'senior cop skill' to be shared out. This would also allow the below point to be done much easier [as the new agency shall start with zero staff, and all hired cops shall be checked].
2/ Proper retrospective checking of all cops. Rationale: Even if new cops coming into the field are just and good, there's no point if you're putting them in a contaminated station-house. Those 'gypsy cops' need to be found and rooted out, as superspreaders of bad practice. Let a new maxim arise; that a bad cop is ultimately worse than no cop.
3/ The ending of making cops pay for their own training up-front. Rationale; poor cops often continue in the field simply because they are still having to pay off their training. Kicker; some poor cops know they are and would quit if they could afford it, while some training centres don't do psychological screening of applicants. On the flip side; there are good potential cops put off by the cost. Some of the better forces already operate a 'free training and handcuffs' model – let this become the legally defined standard for new cops.
4/ Improving training and setting minimum standards for such. Rationale; non-American police are shocked to learn how little time their American fellows spend in developing skills such as 'de-escalation' and 'non-firearm combat' when visiting the USA. I recall one retired British cop describing his American colleagues as suffering from 'the law of instrument' – that as they only really know how to take people down with guns [and now, tasers] they resort to this reaction as default.
5/ Start Federal subsidies for [good] police training. Rationale; there is a national cop shortage. Too many LEOs end up dropping hiring standards and/or waiving checks in an effort to fill uniforms. Increase the supply of good, new cops instilled with best practice, and like a variant of Gresham's Law, the 'bad cops' shall increasingly find themselves ditched for the hoarded 'good cops'.
6/ The setting up of a Federal LEO records agency. Rationale; when a cop moves agency, it is down to their new force to do the background checks regarding previous career. Many either can't do it well or don't bother. Others do try to do it right but are taken in by the 'blue line' within the old agency. By the creation of a 'one stop shop' for LEO records; training, experience and every single charge, complaint and disciplinary action and make it mandatory for every agency to file accurate records to it. Nail the gypsy cop, by making it impossible for them to shake their pasts.
KarmaPolice (talk) 09:58, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
I don't think I disagree with any of this. CorruptUser 14:30, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
It would also help to decouple the military and the police more. The skillset required for these two professions really aren't the same, but between the ex-military equipment shoveled over to law enforcement ("1033 program"), the excessive amounts of leaning on near-military-like teams (SWAT teams etc.), and other "battlefield mentality" type policies, there is too much "warrior" mentality and paradigms in American police forces. Anecdotally (and with "bias" since I live here), US police have a much greater tendency towards brainless belligerency compared to other developed nations I've been too. And I'm in the "privileged" sect of American society!
The thing is, I think that a lot of this stems from a combination of the "War on Some Drugs" in the 1970s-1980s with a legitimate crime wave in the United States in the 1970s (of which I legitimately feel that the lead-crime hypothesis actually is the most plausible primary explanation) that might have scared people some. Between the two, this seems to have led to some seriously hardened tough-on-crime attitudes among Americans, re-awakening that good old fashioned Puritan instinct to be punitive as hell without thinking of possible long term effects. I have seen a few places on the Google (such as this 2016 analysis from a social justice advocacy group called "The Opportunity Agenda") which suggests that "punitive sentiment" in the US might be falling. That stands to reason: lead in gas is banned, and the War on Drugs paradigm has been completely demolished via multiple events (eg the increasing acceptance of marijuana, the Biggest Drug Scourge in America for a while being a controlled-legal prescription drug (Oxycontin), etc.)
Because there seems to be (as seems too typical on many social policies) such a big age gap on the topic of police reform, this is one of those things I think will eventually happen, slowly, once the (with apologies to the non-Trump-y Boomers) Age of Boomer Political Insanity passes. The "think tank" side of this is pretty much in semi-bipartisan agreement that some reforms are needed (well, at least the libertarians and the ACLU both tend to frown on militarized cops, and have for decades at this point). Its the angry elders whose crime paradigm was shaped by the Reagan tough-on-crime years that might be the biggest "blocking force" for police reform at this point. BobJohnson (talk) 14:58, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
I don't use the subway that often, maybe once a month. In spite of that, I saw someone urinating on the subway, I saw a person on the tracks (just a crazy lady, not a murder-attempt), I've seen crazy homeless people harassing the passengers, and just a single stop away from mine someone was murdered and an hour prior to arriving at a major stop another person had been murdered. Just the other week I saw one of those shoplifters simply walking out of the store with a shopping cart of stolen goods, and the store shelves were mostly empty of the cough medicine I had gone there to buy. Rudy Giuliani got elected before because the public was fed up with all the crime, and another of his ilk could and likely will be elected in the future. In the last election, Governor Kathy Hochul only won by 6% in one of the Bluest states in the union, and all it will take to turn NY purple is 3% of the population to switch their vote. So that police reform? Not if the public doesn't see the crime being dealt with one way or another. CorruptUser 15:28, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
Your point being? America needs more SWAT teams to shoot persons for public urination or being a crazy lady on the tracks? Anyway, I did hear an interesting argument [admittedly British, but I think it applies here too] is that part of the causes of a rise in 'low level' crime was the slashing of the 'quasi-official' persons in society; the park keeper, public building janitor, crossing guard, train station official etc. The simple feeling that a) someone cares and b) they may be watching reduced opportunistic anti-social behavior and petty crime. Because like it or not, but quite a lot of people in this world are only kept in check by fears of being caught and punished [and I'll be honest here... I'm kinda in this grouping too].
But anyway, BobJ nails the point perfectly; that you can have the most professional, morally decent and non-discriminatory police in the world, but that don't mean a huge amount if they're having to enforce shite laws. Calls for cop reform needs to bear this in mind. KarmaPolice (talk) 15:48, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
My point is that if crime continues to get worse, we WILL get the SWAT teams to shoot public urinators... CorruptUser 16:20, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
Why? Is someone's urination really that offensive to you? Plus, you never considered the possibility they may have been doing that because they quite literally could not find a public convenience? or that the remaining ones may be utterly disgusting or unsafe? KarmaPolice (talk) 17:00, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
Are you intentionally being obtuse? I can't tell with you. Having a bunch of trigger-happy psychos beating the shit out of someone for pissing (there's a joke in there) is NOT a noble goal, but as the crime gets worse, the public is more willing to turn a blind eye to or even celebrate abuses of power. Many New Yorkers lauded Bernie Goetz. Trump took out a full-page ad to condemn the Central Park 5. We don't want to return to those days (I hope), but to avoid those days we first have to avoid the mess that was the 70's and 80's. CorruptUser 17:22, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
If you didn't realise it, I was questioning a) why the hell public urination should be criminalised and then b) why it should be a 'police matter'. I was also trying to get you to consider that the police have ended up being 'backstops' for other societal issues, including lack of medical care and drug addiction. Or in this simple case, the relative inability for you to find a free, reasonable public bathroom in many American cities. KarmaPolice (talk) 18:07, 1 February 2023 (UTC)


"Reform the police" doesn't necessarily mean being "soft on crime" (let alone "defund the police", in retrospect one of the biggest self-owns of any activist slogan) anyways. It means adjusting some of the things that didn't work in the past very well, and probably won't work well if applied again. Over-aggression in the police is just going to result in more Tyre Nichols style incidents; maybe some people are pissed about crime and want to go all-in on Tough Police Laws, but many people also equally if not more pissed about repeated stories of police brutality. To me, there's no issue with adding more security guards for the subway public urinators (in addition to addressing some of the issues like mental health and homelessness that might be causing someone to whiz in the subway in the first place); "reform the police" is not the same as ridiculous "ALL COPS ARE BAD!" hyperbole. But we can't continue to brush some of this stuff away by continuing to throw them in the clink and wishing the minor offender / "crazies" type away. And we can't have police be so reactive that they always reach for their weapons first. (Seriously, there's something wrong when police can't handle a f'n dog without shooting it...) BobJohnson (talk) 17:26, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
Ironically, the reforms I proposed would actually make the police harder on crime for if nothing else, it would be more efficient, competent and perhaps also more of them. However, I shall question why a bunch of things should be criminalised. KarmaPolice (talk) 18:07, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
I guess that's the big question I've been thinking of for a bit. the Defund the police movement was completely stupid, but it's such a strange thing because either: we keep the police budget the same and try internal reform, give money to the police to give them more training and equipment in non-lethal measures and de-escalation training, as well as some going to oversight to make sure officers are actually using it, or we take money away from the police and try something else entirely. I kind of also liked Karma's idea which I hadn't thought of before, which would make funding for local police a more federal measure, at least in some respects, so there can be much more standardization and oversight instead of the huge asymmetry we see in police around the country. StingraeyAngy 18:08, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
Which is why I present my 'Third Option'. Because abolishment is stupid and you can't reform from within when it's riddled with peverse incentives and with far too much organisational slack. KarmaPolice (talk) 18:24, 1 February 2023 (UTC)

Possible sure, desirable...debatable (really depends on what you value and what you wish to see in society). This thread is painful to read as a lot of fact/value confusions are abound that make any political discussion on the saloon bar absolutely hopeless. Unless of course everyone just regurgitates the same palatable to liberal talking points. Really constructive and philosophically nuanced that is/s. It's not "hyperbole" to say all cops are bad, in that person's particular moral framework cops are classified as bad qua being cops for reasons x, y and z. It isn't an exaggeration but it's not statement of fact either because nothing is as a matter of fact simply good or bad. It's not coming from a logically inconsistent perspective either. You don't have to agree with it but at least practice some empathy so you can actually understand the perspective you are opposing. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 21:43, 1 February 2023 (UTC)

A lot of skepticism of police reform comes from a place that if the foundation for an institution has racism implicitly built in it there is no way you can simply "reform" that out of the system by changing a few policies or laws You need to get rid of the foundations and start from scratch. There is also the question if certain kinds of social issues really need police to be involved to begin with, instances of drug use, mental health crises, etc. There is also conflicting literature on whether or not police are even effective in doing what we expect them to do. Technically in the US they actually have no legal responsibility to protect you, as Uvalde illustrated. We know that when it comes to rape most rapists will never interreact with a police officer related to their crime (because the crime is rarely ever reported to the police, and when it is it is often met with further traumatization or dismissal of the victim, something our article on rape culture acknowledges). About half of murders never get cleared in many parts of the country and that's only comparing that to the crimes that actually get reported. This is only in reference to felonies which is not what police deal with the vast majority of the time. 98% of the time they are dealing with minor misdemeanors, most of which is the result of poverty. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk)
Two things can be true at once; there's an egregiously low clearance rate for major crimes, and the "minor misdemeanors" sure don't seem minor to the people who directly deal with it. Graffiti and broken windows seem minor until it's your car that's been keyed and broken into and your house that requires a several thousand dollar paint job to repair. I live right on the border of an extremely affluent, extremely white area (which I grew up in) and a minority-majority area with some serious crime problems (which I also spent plenty of time in growing up), and just recently I nearly had my catalytic converter ripped out. I don't get why, for instance, graffiti is seen as a minor issue unless it says something racist; then the same people scream ZOMG IT'S A HATE CRIME and castigate anyone who doesn't break out the torches and pitchforks. If there were a clean line between mental health issues and criminal activity I'd be all on board with segregating the two tasks, but that's just not how it works. To cite a real example, I saw a guy having a mental breakdown who also happened to be in a stolen car. I'd get behind having a mental health expert out there, but not without some form of protection; can't think of any better option than an armed officer. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 23:26, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
The clearance rates for property crimes is much much much lower then it is for violent crimes. So how this is an argument for policing is beyond me because it doesn't seem like they deal with it effectively. I stated before most of these sorts of crimes are the product of poverty. You only have to compare the graffiti in poor city blocks to wealthy suburbs to see a correlation. It does not suggest any direct cause for crime but policing isn't the reason why the wealthy suburbs are mostly without graffiti as police barely involve themselves in such communities. They are however overwhelming present in poor neighborhoods where you are more likely to see such vandalism, graffiti, etc. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:33, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
You can see entirely where someone is coming from when they make a hyperbolic statement, while at the same time recognizing it as ridiculous hyperbole. Sure, "ACAB" is a reaction to a somewhat broken police system, one that can be appallingly so at times. But at the same time it's not helpful. It sweeps away an entire pillar of our legal framework dedicated to enforcing laws as "bad" (completely dismissing the fact that, y'know, some people *do* have good experiences with police) without offering any sort of replacement. Part of what killed "defund the police" was that, from what I can see (eg the Minneapolis vote in 2020), even minority communities were concerned that police cutbacks would reduce public safety in their neighborhood. It seems like there was more of a desire for better police, not no police.
And yes, many of those issues you bring up are major concerns for the poor state of US policing, including systematic racism / bias, overstretched police forces, lack of training, too many things criminalized, etc. Obviously police reform is not easy and multi-faceted. BobJohnson (talk) 23:54, 1 February 2023 (UTC)
Some people also have good experiences with sweatshops, unpaid prison labour, etc. That doesn't mean the institution is justifiable. When you say something isn't "helpful" that does not mean anything in a vacuum. Helpful towards what? If someone was a police or prison abolitionist then they would classify any proposal for reform as "unhelpful" to their subjective aims. Replacements have been proposed by the likes of Angela Davis, or Alex S. Vitale but they are not given any mainstream attention or platforms. In part due to the incompatibility of such a position within the Overton window which is primarily controlled by the business owning class. People believe a lot of things help improve "safety" that really amount to security theatre. The goals and interests of the mainstream population is not by default the correct position any more or less then any radical position. We are talking about people with different sets of values, different moral views, different ideas of what is just and right. If someone else's politics isn't helpful towards your preferred political goals, so what? That doesn't make them wrong. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 00:41, 2 February 2023 (UTC)
The main issue with SWAT teams in the United States is that rather than being used as an incredibly sharp scalpel, they're the big hammer of law enforcement. By using them for drug raids on unarmed, unfortified locations and other frankly frivolous situations their professionality gets diluted and as a result standards fall. IMO tactical law enforcement should return to being the sharp scalpel of policing for terrorist attacks, bank robberies, hostage situations and armed barricaded suspects. I don't necessarily mind them being militarized, hell, give them as much as they need to be including armored vehicles and automatic weapons so they can be the sharpest scalpel possible, but don't use them for everything that may pose a slight threat to other, non-tactical police. Currently, in the jurisdiction I'm in, the county police (weird type of situation, county police and county sheriff exist simultaneously) usually have a plate carrier with NIJ III plates along with a semi-automatic rifle and a pump shotgun. They're already well armed and trained enough to deal with half of what SWAT gets called out to do. SwampFox (talk) 04:31, 2 February 2023 (UTC)
So, I'm trying to follow this, so correct me if i'm wrong, but Onlysorta hit exactly what I have been thinking about, insofar as the whole "ACAB" deal. At first it looks like a repugnant statement, but if you actually analyse some of the theory around it, it starts to make sense, and that's what worries me. I think putting a specification to that claim though is the only way it makes sense, which is that ACAB doesn't mean that cops are inherently bad people, but that because of the role and system they are in, it is impossible to be a "good cop" however we choose to define it. It brings into question how do we actually fix policing if it really needs to be rebuilt "from scratch"
At the same time though, you don't really present any true alternative to policing. We will always need a person with a gun that is willing to enforce a set of rules that we set upon ourselves, but what those rules are, who has the gun, and especially what their overall purpose is, and all those specifics are the problem. So stating that the police is a broken system is kinda depressing and frustrating because then how do we fix it? I know it seems like an impossible question, but we keep asking the first question of "how is the police broken" and not "how do we fix it?" StingraeyAngy 07:03, 2 February 2023 (UTC)
First, I'll point out that 'a gun' is not vital for every bit of law enforcement issue. The very fact you said that shows how blinkered the police debate has become in the USA.
Anyway, part of your answer has already been given; every remotely large force needs at least one 'mental crisis team' [which is why I think police force merging is vital, to make them large enough to support them], current police need better training so they can have solutions which aren't simply shooting people and local govt/organisations really need to bring back the 'quasi-official' persons who can deter/deal with the low level 'annoyance' issues like littering, graffiti and so on. KarmaPolice (talk) 08:29, 2 February 2023 (UTC)
If I am not mistaken in the UK the police are not usually armed right? It goes to show how great the divide is because even the call to "disarm the police" is given the same kneejerk response as "defund the police". Of course there is a significant difference between the two nations as the sheer number of guns in the US is absurd with the number of guns outnumbering the human population. I am critical of gun control for reasons similar to most Marxists but I think one of the reasons why such stances is so unpalatable in a place like the US is just the sheer number of guns and gun deaths that makes everyone feel so unsafe. I think there is a space for the analysis to the role to which capitalism played in this particular problem as overproduction tends to be a problem more generally with industrialized societies. Couple that with barely regulated gun manufacturers you end up with a serious problem to the availability of causing a violent death. With that people feel they need armed protection- Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 19:06, 2 February 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── It's almost as if there hasn't been decades of literature on the subject of alternatives to the police. Or alternatives to the criminal "justice" system. Vee (talk) 20:52, 2 February 2023 (UTC)

The thing is, though, there are actually worse alternatives to the United States police system. I don't think I know of a country with no police, so I can't compare directly on that angle. But I certainly can think of many with weak or corrupt police. In the countries where this is the case, the "business owning class" happily hires private security forces ("security for the highest bidder") to make up the gap. Meaning of course security give even less of a shit about the common man and are not accountable at all. There are also many countries where the line between military and police is much blurrier than the United States, too (and that even extends to blurring with corporate security). So just a cautionary point, if the argument is more based on a rotten system than anything else, it's easy to see something worse emerging if police forces and criminal justice systems disappear. BobJohnson (talk) 21:50, 2 February 2023 (UTC)
What exactly are the alternatives that police abolitionists talk about that you aware of? - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:22, 2 February 2023 (UTC)
Yeah. And the justice system too, now I think of it. And I'm not going to accept 'police/courts by another name' either. If you make laws, you shall need a method of enforcing them on those who'd prefer not to follow them, a form of organised method of judging guilt and lastly administering the judgements. When I hear 'alternatives to police' I normally assume the speaker is an American who has little idea that not all police/courts/prisons are like the American [thank fucking god].
Speaking of which, yeah the UK police are not armed as a matter of course [they don't need to be; as our numbers of firearms in civilian hands is very low]. However, exceptions exist - for example, Northern Ireland. This is because of some historical bother which means they're much more statistically likely to encounter armed 'baddies' than on the mainland. Every force has at least one 'Firearms Command' [our SWAT] on 24/7 on-call too, to deal with when gun-related shit comes down. But they're all coppers, which means they've trained on non-gun methods of dealing with folk [which is often needed when dealing with knife crime, which is quite a thing here due to the lack of guns]. Lastly, if I remember right they have to account for every bullet fired and a 'suspect shot' shall be in the glare of the media. This shows in stats; in the USA in '22, 1,176 persons were directly killed by police. In England/Wales, 3 and NI, 1 [can't find Scotland].
And if I had my own way, I would make armed private security forces follow the same rules and regs as the LEOs. I can understand the desire to 'fill the gaps' and having the cash to make this happen [I'm not even ideologically opposed to them existing, which is a bit odd for a Marxist] but I think they do need clear oversight, standards and public accountability. KarmaPolice (talk) 09:41, 3 February 2023 (UTC)
yet what exactly are these alternative proposals, and what would make them "police by another name"? Can you cite examples from known police abolitionists? - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 21:34, 3 February 2023 (UTC)
I've heard 'citizens' watches' and 'local community patrols' suggested in the past. I would class them 'police by another name' because they basically, aim to enforce the laws and preserve public safety [which is the stated goal for police forces the world over].
Thing is, actual 'police abolition' [as in the complete removal of police period] is not actually advocated by anyone who isn't a full-blown anarchist - at least, not anyone who is 'someone'. The 'lets have no police' shite is normally spouted by relative randos who when pressed have no answer to my 'how shall lawbreakers be detected and apprehended?' which normally ends we me being accused of being 'reactionary', 'blinkered' or similar. Including on this very site. KarmaPolice (talk) 08:51, 4 February 2023 (UTC)
I don't think Angela Davis, or Alex S. Vitale has ever suggested citizen watches or local community controls. You didn't actually cite anything from known police abolitionists. I think the closest to what you suggest is Thoughtslime's proposal for directly democratically elected voluntary militia (though Thoughtslime is not exactly a widely known police abolitionist or academic on the subject). Which could be argued to be "police by another name" but in that case I would argue that are relevant differences. Police function on the behalf of the state and are NOT directly democratically elected or recallable by their communities. They also are not required to be transparent in their activties to the communities they are assigned to "protect". There is also a distinction between "community defense from violent antisocial threats" and "official body of enforcement of the law". You kind of have to work from a conception of policing so broad that everything from military soldiers, ancient roman guards, to members of the black panther party are all classifiable as "police". Regardless I would agree that Thoughtslime's suggestion has grounds for objection, but I also know form reading figures like Vitale and Davis that this is not really what academics who call for police abolition actually suggest. Typically they focus on the prevention of crime rather than stopping it through the expansion of social programs, poverty reduction measures, a expanded role of social workers, mental healthcare workers, etc. Davis especially calls for a model of restorative justice and lets be real probably would be okay with having more organizations like the black panthers roaming black communities providing food, shelter, and community defense. Neither Davis or Vitale are anarchists btw so the claim "actual 'police abolition is not actually advocated by anyone who isn't a full-blown anarchist" is false. Unless you want to argue that Angela Davis an incredibly influential academic feminist and critic of the prison-industrial complex is not "someone". Vitale is a sociologist and researcher in the relationship between social justice and policing whose book the end of policing exploded in popularity after the George Floyd protests.
There exists even within social scientific research methods of reducing crime in communities that don't involve the use of policing see: https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/23141405/violence-crime-cbt-therapy-cash-shootings and https://www.vox.com/future-perfect/2019/3/26/18281325/ecuador-legalize-gangs. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 17:42, 4 February 2023 (UTC)
I'll be blunt; 'known abolitionists' like Vitale ultimately live in a castle made from clouds. That is if they genuinely believe literally, in 'abolition' and aren't simply using it as hyperbole [which I generally do think]. And yes, I would say self-policing by groups like the Panthers as 'policing by another name'.
Many of the things they suggest make sense; from taking an axe to swathes of the criminal code to having more mental crisis teams on-call. However, they fall down in two respects; one is a 'soft' fall and the other a 'hard' one.
Firstly, the 'soft' fall is that some of their solutions are effectively a drastic shift in the general layout of American society; for example regarding wealth inequality and chronic consumerism. Now, I'm a socialist, I'm in favour of these things but I also fully realise that that is going to be a much harder project to both sell and implement. What are we to do; get rid of all policing and hope things hang together until the underlying issues 'wither away'? I think the predictions shall be easy here; there would be complete fucking chaos [and most 'normal' people realise this].
The 'hard' fall is that abolitionists either ignore and/or handwave away the issue that even if all the suggested 'prevention of crime' factors are put in, there shall still be a residue of 'tasks' some form of LEO would need to perform. Investigation of crimes such as fraud and corruption and the protection of persons during demostrations, for example. That however good the other systems get, they shall be falliable and thus, the 'backstop' of the coersive power of the state/community shall be required.
Which is why some of the alternatives leave me distinctively cold. I don't want to be policed by 'my community' because generally speaking groups are less tolerant of minorities than the law is/should be. It's all well and good to say that A is oppressing minority B and therefore B should be able to 'police themselves' but then you suddenly realise that B is in fact oppressing minority C and you've just withdrawn the ability of the state to protect them.
Lastly, power abhors a vacuum and if the police withdraw entirely, others shall arise to take it's place. I've seen this happen in Northern Ireland, it really wasn't fucking pretty. KarmaPolice (talk) 10:00, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
I am sure all those trans women forced to give blowjobs by gunpoint after being arrested during stonewall felt mighty protected by the state. Something I am sure random joes from the queer communities they hailed from had just as much legitimized coercive power and motivation to pull off. Did these protections of person's during demonstrations happened before or after police ran over protestors with their cars during the 2020 George Floyd protests? As we all know the law historically has been mighty tolerate and accepting of black and brown bodies, and queer people more so then black and brown communities and communities of queer people have ever been. Fuck the LGBT+ community give me those police who raided bathhouses. Clearly the police care about me more than any gay fuck on grindr. Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 19:08, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
Also save the dumb ass fallacy of straw manning anarchists and abolitionists as if we are calling for the abolition of police tomorrow while keeping all other oppressive hierarchies and exploitative institutions intact. We call for the abolition of police alongside the abolition of patriarchy, the state, capitalism, prisons, etc. We take this as the long term end goal happening simultaneously with the establishment of socialism. It such a dumb take to act as if we are seriously advocating we just get rid of the police right away and leave all else the same, and do nothing in establishing the above mention approaches to preventing crime. The case of Northern Ireland has fuck all with what we are advocating for. For a socialist you are remarkably ignorant to the theories and ideas of other socialists. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 19:30, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
"I am sure all those trans women forced to give blowjobs by gunpoint after being arrested during stonewall"
Do you have a citation for that? I know that police can rape too, but I'm unaware of it happening during the stonewall riot, let alone multiple victims.
And it's absolutely not "strawmanning" when there are literally anarchists running around creating "police-free zones" in Atlanta or Portland, and people marching in the streets demanding police abolition and claiming that "defund the police" is a "compromise". And it's a fair question to ask how rules/laws will be enforced in any society. Even amongst the wealthiest communities, for whom wealth is effectively infinite, there's still rapes, assaults, drug use, etc; the very idea that any hypothetical anarchist society would not suffer from some crimes of some form is so outlandish that the person suggesting there'd be no need for some sort of judicial/police-equivalent should be written off as a complete crank. CorruptUser 21:40, 8 February 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Wikipedia cites incidents of lesbians being sexually assaulted by police from "Carter, David (2004). Stonewall: The Riots that Sparked the Gay Revolution. St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-0-312-34269-2." and the mention of trans women having be victims of sexual assault themselves was covered in the episode of You're wrong about on the Stonewall Riots

"trans women talk later about how they are arrested by the cops on suspicion of sex work with no evidence, just because they exist. And then they will take them to jail, shave their heads, if they have long hair. They would force them to give oral sex, they were often raped." - Michael Hobbes, Journalist.[12]

- Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 21:49, 8 February 2023 (UTC)

@CorruptUser Those were temporary autonomous zones and the police weren't actually abolished in those instances. In a sense yes, police defunding is a kind of compromise because it's technically a policy of reform not abolition; though it can be used as a stepping stone to eventual abolition. Cite me any actual notable anarchist that makes the argument that I claim is a strawman. Also like why even talk about rape as if Police do fuck all when it comes to rape. We already addressed how most rape survivors don't even feel comfortable going to the police, the vast majority of rapists never have to interact with the police for their crime, and of those who get brought to court only 2% ever get convicted. Who gives a shit about drug use? The only reason that drug prohibition is even a thing is for deeply racist reasons to fuel the prison-industrial complex. The people in wealthy neighborhoods doing drugs the vast majority of time aren't getting arrested for it. That shit almost exclusively happens on city streets and poor communities. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:04, 8 February 2023 (UTC)

The Wikipedia page only mentions Lesbians being felt-up by some of the police, not forced blowjobs or other forms of rape.
As for rape, the police do take cases seriously, but if they aren't bothering it's usually because there's too little evidence to pursue. That or politics gets involved. The "2%" stat for rapists is actually a huge misnomer; that's how many rapists go to jail for rape, not how many rapists take plea bargain for something that won't get them on the registry. CorruptUser 22:15, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
Yes, rape the crime notorious for producing plenty of evidence most of the time. The thing that is not "too little evidence to pursue" 99% of the fucking time. Also the you're wrong about reference is to the transwomen rape claim. Sure, whatever, I see that for you sexual assault of lesbians isn't a big deal unless it's rape by gunpoint. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:22, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
1) Too little evidence to pursue 99% of the time? [www.cmsac.org/facts-and-statistics/ Even this biased website claims slightly more than half of reported rapes lead to at least an arrest], so I don't know if you are just misinformed or completely making things up. The website doesn't mention the rate at which police investigate reported rapes, but if they are making an arrest more than half the time, they are investigating a lot more than half the time. The stats, again, also fail to include when the rapist is arrested or convicted for something other than rape, because yes rape is difficult to prove beyond reasonable doubt but drug possession is easy. Furthermore, it does make any mention of rapists being convicted for subsequent rapes, so that 6% number they have at the end is also suspect. These aren't easy numbers to tease out, but these points are being intentionally ignored. I'm also extremely suspicious of the claim that only 69% of convicted felony rapists spend a day in prison, for a felony, when every single state has minimum sentences; my guess is that the 31% includes a lot of "time served" for someone who spent a year or two awaiting trial.
More importantly, the myth that the police probably won't do anything at all is why rapists think they can get away with it and victims don't report to the police, which is why it's so important to stop spreading that myth.
2) It's (alleged) sexual assault, which is terrible, but not all terrible is equally terrible. CorruptUser 22:56, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
The Washington Post cites felony convictions as being less than 1% in the case of rape [13] - 23:15, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
Really showing your colors in regards to rape culture when talking about some sexual assaults being better then others, and immediately casting doubt on the women who have come out in regards to be sexually assaulted by the police. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:15, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
You're right. I was once sexually assaulted in an elevator; a drunk woman hugged and tried to kiss me uninvited. What I suffered through was just as bad as what happened to the Central Park Jogger. /snark CorruptUser 23:21, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
Very useful discourse, we should we really focus on making sure that survivors all make comparisons to one another about who had it worse so we can dismiss lesbians' when they groped by police. Very progressive, much empathy. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:25, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
Also that source you cite says fuck all about "police probably won't do anything at all" as being a myth. Thinking that is a primary factor why survivors don't come out kind of suggests you haven't actually read all to much about rape culture. Like you really think the rapist often being someone the victim personally knows has fuck all to do with it? You think survivors are never humiliated, doubted, or dismissed by law enforcement, courts, and the media when they come out? No retaliation from the perpetrators family or friends? All rape victims just get told the cops won't do fuck all and so it's all their fault if their rapist gets away with it? - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:44, 8 February 2023 (UTC)
You are grasping at straws and changing the subject. Focus on the claim alone before moving on.
Claim) If a rape is reported to the police, the police are more likely to perform an investigation than ignore the reported rape
Assuming the source I found is true, is my claim true or not? CorruptUser 00:00, 9 February 2023 (UTC)
The source does not really claim that. Using the find feature in my browser the word "investigate" or "investigation" do not even appear once in the source you provided. So assuming your source is true...it's irrelevant. I don't actually know what the rates are for investigations when a rape is reported, and what constitutes a investigation. Are we talking filling out the most basic of relevant paperwork as "investigating"? Or is it finding suspects, gathering evidence, etc. There are definitely rape survivors who have reported coming to the police and having the police tell them to their face there is nothing they can do about it. Others too have reported being subject to victim blaming or being told that "drunken one-night stands" is not rape. In many cases without DNA evidence or external evidence of any kind police genuinely can't do shit about it besides filing the report. You also don't seem to aware of how re-traumatizing reporting to the police can be if say something like a rape kit has to be performed. I have no idea how common that is, but knowing that rape is a notoriously difficult crime to press charges for without DNA evidence I don't think is defies reason to assume it may be fairly common. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 00:27, 9 February 2023 (UTC)
You have their stats on the percentage of reported rapes that lead to an arrest. Unless you seriously believe the police are making arrests without investigating the claim, the percentage of reported rapes that lead to arrests are a minimum on the percent of reported rapes that are investigated.
So answer the question, before I say some things that I won't be able to take back. CorruptUser 00:34, 9 February 2023 (UTC)
Arrests don't per se mean charges or convictions were laid. Also your source states "If a rape is reported, there is a 50.8% chance of an arrest." Only half of rapes that get reported result in a arrest? Guess what you say is technically true but that is with the current rate of very low number of reports which can bias the results due to selection bias. Especially if overwhelmingly the kinds of rapes that get reported is precisely because they have additional evidence or factors that increase the likelihood of resulting in a arrest in the first place. Regardless this does not mean that policing is the effective solution to rape to begin with. It's a response to sexual violence not a prevention of it. Prisons themselves also tend to be rape culture centers in their own right so having resulted in prison isn't per se necessarily a good thing. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 00:55, 9 February 2023 (UTC)
You initially claimed that the police didn't pursue in 99% of the cases. If the actual answer was 80%, sure, the 99% would just be hyperbole. When it's less than half, sorry, that 99% is just pure bullshit. Are there cases of rape that the police are ignoring? Probably, but the same could be said of murder, arson, etc. And if 60% of rapes are being unreported, but the police arrest 51% of rapes, which is more important to focus on to increase total arrests; getting the arrest rate up a full percentage point, or the reported rate down a full percentage point?
As for the claim that the police only stop rapes after the fact, well, imagine the following scenario. The legislature declares amnesty for all rapists, decriminalizes it, and releases every rapist from prison. Do you honestly believe that in this scenario, the rape rate would stay the same? Because that's what is literally implied by claiming police prevent no crimes. The police themselves don't directly stop a crime most of the time, but that's not the point of having a police force; it's a combination of the threat of consequences and sequestering violent criminals away that causes untold numbers of crimes to never happen in the first place. CorruptUser 14:35, 9 February 2023 (UTC)
I never actually claimed that though. Give me a direct quote of me saying that. I said the conviction rate for rape was about 2% finding another source that said 1%. You are confusing arrests, charges, and convictions. These are not all the same thing. Someone can get arrested but never charged, and likewise someone can get charged but never convicted in court. To think 50.8% arrests result from reporting to being the same rates for convictions and jail time is foolish. Also why the fuck are you trying to argue with a feminist about decriminalizing rape? It’s not just prison or full decriminalization, Jesus christ. Are you even fucking trying? No one here was arguing for decriminalizing rape, no one said anything about decriminalizing rape resulting in the “same number of rapes”, this is a complete red herring. - 18:11, 9 February 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Even feminists, with their primary interests being women's rights, must be concerned about violence in general. I found by googling the general conviction rates (Always meaning cases brought to trial), for assault is very close to that of rape (60%, 58% resp.).Ariel31459 (talk) 18:35, 9 February 2023 (UTC)

And you've missed my point about the "decriminalize rape" scenario. You made the claim that police do nothing to stop rape. This claim ignores all the crimes that don't happen because the police did their job, not because an officer physically stops the assailant during the commission of a crime, but because the assailant is either afraid of getting caught or is already in prison. If you truly thought the police did nothing, you'd believe that legalizing rape (or at least decriminalizing it) and releasing all the rapists from prison would have no impact on the number of rapes committed each year.CorruptUser 18:51, 9 February 2023 (UTC)
I didn't didn't say police "do nothing" to stop rape, I said they are largely ineffective which is still true. Weak efficacy is not the same thing as NO efficacy, and we are not comparing police and prisons to an proposed alternative that may be more or less effective in your "thought experiment"; but rather an absurd proposal made by the likes of someone like Roosh V. It's not a genuine argument for police efficacy and justification if the argument is that we should be looking for better alternatives to policing and prisons. We still have it being the case that the vast majority of rapists never interact with the police for the crime of rape. We don't even know necessarily if the average rapist is a repeat offender. Knowing the norms surrounding consent in culture at large I do not think the vast majority of those who have raped think of themselves or know themselves to be rapists. There are so many instances of rape that is completely normalized from "drunken one night stands" to picking up a girl at the bar to manipulating her to agree to have sex with you. Shit isn't we need to support the racist prison-industrial complex or allow rapists to run rampant. Why isn't restorative policies and specialized house arrest not options here? I don't think the average abolitionist is arguing we should do jack shit to prevent sexual predators from having access to potential victims. But if we want to eliminate rape in society we have to do so by abolishing rape culture. We cannot do that but putting people in facilities where rape is a common and expected outcome -- so normalized that "prison rape jokes" make regularly appearances in media at large. You can't combat rape culture with rape culture. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 20:10, 9 February 2023 (UTC)
I hate to break it to you guys, but police culture IS rape culture. Male police officers rape female police officers with alarming frequency. Do you have any idea what's going on in sleepy ol' Canada? 3086 female RCMP officers are suing for sexual abuse, many of which endured violent rape and gang rape from their male colleagues. And the only reason it's possible for us to know about this is because it's a nationalized force. So a nationalized force isn't going to stop the abuse, but at least it makes it possible to have SOME idea of how shockingly common it is. RCMP is a force with all kinds of pride, they have extra-respectable red uniforms for special occasions, they have ROYAL in their name, it's all about pomp and circumstance and supposed high-professionalism but it is anything but. From the top brass down, the corruption is staggering. Americans clearly have no idea how bad their police problem, the data simply can't be gathered like it can from a national force. And guess who pays the billions in settlements for this systemic debacle, the taxpayer of course. There is no way to rehabilitate this, especially when they extent of it is completely unknown. But I find it laughable when people say the 'defund' movement is ill-conceived. Ever since the forfeiture law was enacted police forces everywhere in USA are flush with drug cash. There are forces (LOTS of them) with 5 members in a town of 200 people in the middle of nowhere with tricked out million-dollar police assault vehicles and full blown SWAT teams, because the town happens to be situated on an interstate highway so they can pick off drug runs with regularity, and if they don't spend the forfeited cash it goes to govt. general revenue, so of course it's always spent on police toys. The fact is police deal with actual crime like it's an annoying nuisance that takes time away from their corrupt shenanigans. And every urban force is fully infiltrated by biker gangs, mafia and drug cartels. There can never be reform, it's impossible. The best we can do is try to make people informed about how to deal with police that will enable them to be less likely to be the victims of police abuse. FairDinkum (talk) 11:55, 10 February 2023 (UTC)
Really isn't breaking it to me I am the resident police abolitionist on this site. I doubt half the people in this community is aware of the documented criminal "police gangs" in places like LA and if so they would probably provide apologia for it. My grandmother had a non-profit organization focused on raising awareness of the sexual exploitation of youth and in it's prevention. She worked with a lot of youth who were victims of coercive sex trafficking and had a high profile case where one of the RCMP officers she worked was charged and convicted for the sexual exploitation of a minor. That minor being one of the youths she worked with. People say shit like "bad apples" including my grandmother without realizing the whole statement is "a bad apple spoils the bunch". The only way you can prevent abuses of power is preventing such positions of power arising to begin with. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 19:14, 10 February 2023 (UTC)

I don't dispute that American police appear to suck on any yardstick applied, Dumb. I've never said they didn't suck either. I am also going to strike out all your bits of appeal to emotion as irrelevant to the discussion. Not that I think such shits should be cops, but the belief that any right-thinking person would agree on 'don't give violent rapists a gun and badge' and so does not need to be stated [though I have in fact said right at the top of this discussion that such people must be filted out and sharpish]. I mean, I don't say 'don't hire paedophiles as teachers' either... I like to think it goes without saying.

You accuse me of strawmanning but what you are advocating for America would be 'complete fucking chaos'. This would be unavoidable as to achive your goal would require a wholesale smashing of the status quo past the level of the Bolsheviks in 1917. Even at this point, if Americans were told that it was either 'shit police' or 'no police' and the latter would require the break-up of any organised entity [as it's all hierarchal and ultimately based on 'oppression'] including all layers of the state I strongly suspect the vast majority would stick with the status quo, even the marginalised and exploited parts. Thus, 'clouds in the sky' - reforms that shall never happen unless there was some kind of Black Swan event to wreck everything first.

I'm not 'ignorant' of other theories, I simply do not believe anarchism 'scales' past a relatively small size [individual communes etc]. I have already cited one of my complaints; that I fear that a crowd 'groupthink' of behavior etc would be in fact be more confining than the leeway permitted by law in most modern democracies [social conformity is a bitch]. What's more, while I do accept that quite a few problems are more structural in nature I don't accept the implied premise that nothing can be done to improve the American policing systems within the current societal setup. KarmaPolice (talk) 10:39, 11 February 2023 (UTC)

” This would be unavoidable as to achive your goal would require a wholesale smashing of the status quo past the level of the Bolsheviks in 1917.” HandsomeChad: Yes. Imagine being a “socialist” and so passionately defensive of the status quo and majority opinion, then also openly expressing concerns of groupthink. My argument wasn’t an appeal to emotion. I was stating clear counterexamples of police NOT being the force that protects minority rights but actively works in their violent oppression. Something that is still an ongoing problem. Like many minorities actually live in communities of their peers. I don’t see how the other gay people in a place like Davie Street in Vancouver is going to somehow be more bigoted against other gay people than the police who have a long history of harassing queer people and the homeless population. I don’t think the gay homeless couples I see sleeping on the street feels more protected by the police enforcing anti-homeless laws in the queerest part of the city. Likewise I don’t see how black communities in places like Oakland in California feel less protected by their black neighbours than the police who have a long history of victimizing black people in those parts of the states. Do you not understand why BLM started as a movement to begin with? Do you think racist policing is just a thing of a past? It’s such a basic premise in most social justice circles that the idea that police primarily exist for protection is a deeply white and deeply privileged misconception. As the ulvade shooting illustrated the police actually have zero legal obligations to protect the life of anyone within places like the states. A consistent Marxist would know that the police actually exist for the protection of private property as a tool of violence for the capitalist class. The criminalization of poverty, brutality and harassment against society’s “undesirables” is not a bug of the institution... it’s a feature. Read anything about the prison-industrial complex and becomes clear that a lot of criminalization especially in regards to drugs is to produce a class of labourers that are free of the regulations like minimum wage, the right to unionize, etc. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 15:57, 11 February 2023 (UTC)
Because marginalized communities often find police protection to be piss-poor at best, and at worst the police are a hostile threat, they often take it upon themselves to ensure for community safety and survival. This is part of the reason why street gangs form, for instance. Vee (talk) 19:29, 12 February 2023 (UTC)
You mean the Mafia and the protection rackets. CorruptUser 09:03, 13 February 2023 (UTC)
I don't buy the argument that we need so many cops to prevent 'chaos in the streets'. Cops don't stop crimes from being committed, investigators solve crimes after they take place. The means of reforming the police cannot be done within the police organisations, it can only be done with very strict civillian oversight, and that oversight would require the cops to go through years of training like psychologists do. Once upon a time every FBI agent had to be a lawyer, so why not require every cop to be a psychologist? Because there would be a dearth of recruits. And weeding out 'bad apples' would decimate any force. The people who want to be cops are psychologically messed up to begin with. Many of proudly say that they knew they wanted to be cops when they were toddlers. In other words they are living out a fantasy they had when they were five years old. Police culture is not adult culture, they are all developmentally stunted. There is no way to make the kind of people who want to be cops be good cops. The entire concept of policing would have to be changed. The kind of people who would be good cops aren't dumb enough to take the job in the first place, they have the skills and composition to work better jobs. FairDinkum (talk) 10:03, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
Ok, I'll ask you the questions that OnlySorta was too obstinate to answer.
If the police/courts stopped investigating and/or punishing any particular class of crimes, would the number of those crimes remain relatively the same? CorruptUser 16:57, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
No. Wow so obstinate. In fact I might even say those rates may get even higher. That's a problem with the question though. The question is just asking if these institutions stopped; it does not ask under what context and if any alternative systems would be set up. If we consider every possible world to which the police/courts did not exist or stopped doing there jobs I think an intellectually honest assumption would that be that some possible worlds would see an increase in "crimes" while others may not, while others may even lower depending on the social programs and police set up in that particular world. It's one of those "more than you can possibly know" kinds of biases where we are running on assumption not knowledge. That being said we know in cases where the police do stop doing their job there does seem to be a increase in violent crime, but that is also in the total absence of any alternatives or funding to other policies and social programs. Also the data on such violent crime increasing tends to come from police departments themselves which presents an obvious conflict of interest. Regardless it's not hard to admit that if our criminal-justice system stopped tomorrow people would take opportunity of that. That's why that's not what police and prison abolitionists are seriously arguing for. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 18:31, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
I'm not suggesting that police-as-is is the ideal scenario. Rather, I'm fighting back against the idea that "police do nothing". The police arresting a car thief prevents future car theft even if the original car was long ago scrapped for parts. That doesn't mean that there aren't hypothetical education or job training programs that would also prevent car theft, possibly better than the police currently do.
However, the biggest gripe I have with the police-abolitionist crowd is that, to reach the world with a decent social safety net and education system, you have to keep a police system in place until after the crime rates decline. CorruptUser 18:41, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
But the idea that future car thefts are necessarily stopped isn't a logically valid consequence of having a car thief arrested. We do not know if the car thief in question even would have been a repeat offender, and is not simply committing this one off crime out of desperation. I think the only reason why rates would rise at all is because of the absence of deterrent not that police themselves are genuinely effective qua being police in actively preventing crime. If we genuinely found other systems that effectively dealt with crime without the additional social harms of police, in this supposed time "after" the rates have declined and we then abolished police and the rates stayed the same as before would you not at least in the case support police abolitionism? At least as a hypothetical? - Only Sort of Dumb (talk)
In that hypothetical? Mostly. But it will always be a hypothetical for the simply reason that even if everyone were millionaires with 'bots doing all the menial tasks, there'd still be crimes like vandalism, assault, murder, rape, etc etc, because it turns out that poverty isn't the sole cause of crime. CorruptUser 20:33, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
It doesn't need to be. But that doesn't mean ruling out poverty no crime is preventable. Even if such crimes are "inevitable" they are "inevitable" with the police with additional harms associated with the police if you can minimize such crimes from occurring as much as possible without the police, would that not be the utilitarian alternative? The existence of such institutions creates the power dynamic to enable some of these crimes as the yearly extrajudicial killings and rape culture present in police culture will attest. Criminality is not an inherent mystical essential component to what someone is. The principle of sufficient reason applies just as much to human behavior as it applies to physics, and "crime" is a social construct. If you can determine the causes of crime then you can manipulate the phenomena as to reduce if not outright stop crime. That's not what policing is doing. If anything all it is do is supplying a potential consequence to demotivate criminal behavior, but it doesn't address or attack the causes. It's not to say it has no effect on the outcome, but speaking purely in a way that is consequence of a physicalist worldview there would necessarily need to be ways to remove the casual factors to criminality entirely. Deterrents may work, but they are not an alternative to directly manipulating or intervening in the causes of crime. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:01, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
That's a map/territory fallacy.
The laws surrounding "Murder" and "Rape" are technically social constructs, because laws are by definition social constructs. That doesn't mean that just because an action isn't properly defined under the law, that an action isn't a murder or rape.
As for the cause of crime? General Strain Theory. But the reality is there will always be some sort of strain because people's expectations will always exceed society's capacity to provide them. Our ancestors would be absolutely jealous that we live in a world of "medicine" and "unlimited food", yet we are miserable. In the utopia of infinite wealth, there will always be love triangles and jealousy; there will always be more guys who think they deserve Christina Hendricks than there are Christina Hendricks's, there will always be sociopaths born into society who take pleasure from the suffering of others, there will always be those who believe they deserve more than their neighbors for whatever reasons, there will always be young men angry at the whole system, and there will always be violence of some form. So yeah, work to prevent people from being criminals as much as possible, but ultimately, there will always be some amount of crime. CorruptUser 23:35, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
I don't think you understand the map/territory fallacy which also called the fallacy of misplaced concreteness. The fallacy is when you mistake an abstract concept or object for something concrete as in occupying space and time, participates in physical causation, etc. Taking an abstract concept like "crime" and insisting it is a set of concrete physical behaviors would actually be an example of the map/territory fallacy. I sort of subtly made a distinction between the physical actions we call crimes and the concept of crime itself. I am suggesting for those physical actions they will have physical causes, and because of that they should be preventable. Whether or not they are the product of poverty or not is not even relevant. The entire argument though is such a thinly veiled strawman because I never say murder or rape were social constructs; I said crime was. This is confusing a set with a particular element of that set. I.e. a category mistake - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:51, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
The significance of that is that not all crimes are necessarily violent or even antisocial acts. One of the ways you can reduce crime, is classifying less things as crimes. No shit we would want to continue classifying murder and rape as crimes, but that is not actually what the majority of activities classified as "crimes" are. The vast majority of people have committed at least one crime in their life, those being things like piracy, j-walking, illegal parking, noise violations etc. Couple that with more "serious offenses" like the sale of cannabis, or the possession of heroin. These are way way way more common and way more demonstrative of what police actually deal with day to day than "murders and rapes". In some instances as well these minor things that hurt next to no one still result in people being harassed, arrested, or in the case of someone like George Floyd....killed. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:58, 15 February 2023 (UTC)
Have you ever driven NYC? I committed a few "crimes" such as "forgetting to move my car before street cleaner came". I'd happily pay those fines if it meant there were cops actually enforcing the rules, because when the cops aren't there I get passed on the shoulder by assholes trying to jump the queue, I have to deal with the maniacs merging across 2 lanes of traffic and weaving in and out, the people that merge into my lane before I've even finished my own merge out of it, etc etc. Because society does in fact, go to hell when you don't have someone enforcing all those "petty" rules.
Oh, and drug laws are their own issue. I mean, it's done to side-step Due Process, but basically, no one goes to jail for weed; they go to jail for something else that the cops were sure of but couldn't prove, or pleading down from something nasty. E.g., the cops are investigating a series of breakins, they know who is in possession of the stolen goods but can't prove that the suspect actually is the burglar and not just someone the burglar sold to, but... the person also has a bunch of weed in his apartment. The obvious problem is that this allows the system to arrest people for any reason, such as "one cop was sleeping with the suspect's girlfriend and wanted him to go bye-bye"; Tyre Nichols being a more extreme version of that case. CorruptUser 00:23, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
You mean to tell me that all these traffic crimes happen regularly in spite of the existence of a traffic cops? Man it's like the deterrent only works provided people don't assume they can simply get away with it. Well it's not as if there is any combination of smart technology we can integrate into cars to make them self-driving, or alternatively ding traffic violations by the driver to automate a fining procedure that does not require any human actor enforcing said rules. :/. That's beyond imagination. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 00:34, 16 February 2023 (UTC)


They'd happen more frequently without the occasional police there or the people getting their licenses revoked. As for limiters and auto-penalties... those ignore that there are times when breaking the law is necessary. E.g., there's an ambulance and you need to move out of the way, or there's a dangerous situation where you need to accelerate, that sort of thing. I don't want a machine, because a machine isn't going to pull me out of a wreck; an officer on the scene will. CorruptUser 15:35, 16 February 2023 (UTC)
Police don’t pull you out of the wreck either. Did you forget that paramedics and firefighters exist? - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 05:13, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
You've don't get out of the cities much, do you? CorruptUser 05:56, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
I literally live in one of the most populated cities in Canada. It's the firefighters who operate the jaws of life and pull people out of car wrecks. This is the case in most cities. Maybe I don't know much about New York's overinflated police budget requiring the police to do the firefighter's job but the very existence of the practice of firefighters doing this sort of work takes a point off as this being a necessary job of policing. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 19:00, 17 February 2023 (UTC)
Dumb, I'm not 'defensive of the status quo' and it don't help your argument by calling me names. My point was to as I already said point out the majority of Americans would end up 'clinging to nurse for fear of something worse' [which is bad if you're a movement which wishes to use a vaguely democratic route]. Personally, I do accept that a bit of 'smashing' does need to be done now and then, that most people will put up with a very defective current system simply out of distrust of alternatives, laziness, propaganda and so on. Like with [for example] anarcho-primitivists, I can at least respect their sincerity when they accept for example, perhaps half the world's population would die if they got their way [still think they're fucking nuts, though].
After stripping out the 'American police are baaaad' broken record [which again, only shows that American police suck, not all policing concepts] I'm actually not sure on what you're continuing to bitch about, really. Oh, except to do a variant of the 'no true scotsman' fallacy by hinting that I'm not a 'real' socialist because I don't agree with you 100%. [My view that even a 'fully socialist state' would need some form of policing isn't a minority of one; that at least during the 'transitional period' law officers would be required to protect the weak from the strong and watch those in power don't try to turn into a new ruling class and/or become corrupt]. Not for the first time, I am going to point out there are many shades of opinion and trying to shoehorn me into the 'law and order' types just makes you look, frankly kinda dogmatic and blinkered.
Speaking of 'smashing'... yes, I do think the American system is so broken a model that it's incapable of internal reform or gradual evolution. As Dinkum points out, the 'weeding out' of bad cops shall decimate forces but that's not an argument not to do it, simply to prepare in advance for the 'great weed-whacking' by setting up a new system of producing much better cops [and a lot more of them], recuited from a wider set of the population, trained with best practice and with a much more healthy 'serve the people' ethos. KarmaPolice (talk) 09:51, 19 February 2023 (UTC)
It didn’t help your argument to dismiss experts as “living in clouds” which I can just as easily call ad hominem to. You’re not sure what “I am bitching about” yet feel pretty confident to assess my intent and meaning regardless; acting in performative contradiction. Yes it’s just “American police is baaaad” such a good faith, charitable presentation of what I been arguing. At no point in European history has the bourgeois or even fascist states ever utilize the police to suppress worker’s strikes, arrest queer people, or round up the jews. Nothing of value what so ever to talk about the pre-existing political structures as structures that enable such things to happen. No way in which the absence of an institution can institutional abuse be prevented. Petty crime is always to be on par of course to the extrajudicial killing power of the state. Never has it been the case in any dystopia real or imagined that the police of said state been the source of rape and death.
Nothing about giving people the power to dominate others with the use of force ever incentivizes that force be used for better or for worse.
It is of course not a product of Marxism to see the police an extension of the class apparatus of the bourgoise as inherently opposed to the aim of socialism as it is their literal sworn duty to protect the rights of private property. No, of course we just need to the good guys with a gun to stop the bad guys with a gun....or in some enlightened nations the good guy with the a baton. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:42, 21 February 2023 (UTC)
Firstly, this is one of those many subjects where 'experts' are not all in unanimous agreement with each other; it would be a snap to find some which wouldn't agree in part or whole with, for example Vitale. What's more, they're not infalliable beings either, incapable of criticism or comment - now, while I did not rush out and buy/read his work, I did at least read reviews, précis of his arguments etc and laid out a couple of the holes that I'd found within them.
I don't 'assess your intent', I simply go on what you say. Hmm, when a person says stuff like HandsomeChad: Yes. Imagine being a “socialist” and so passionately defensive of the status quo and majority opinion, then also openly expressing concerns of groupthink. yes, I think I've got reason to suspect for example, you have monocrome vision and think any person who is not your mirror viewpoint-wise is on 'the other side'.
But you know what? There's no point in continuing this discussion. It is pretty apparent throughout this that you are arguing from an ideological standpoint alone in which no information, no reasoning or appeals from anyone could budge you from in a single millimetre. Your position is 'perfect', thus you shall never admit any gaps, weaknesses or contrary facts. Whether you genuinely believe your official line or it's simply a public position [never admit weakness, lest They use it against you later] shall, I suspect remain unknown. And even if I did agree with you ideologically I'd still be narked with you for your disingenuousness - for example, while you've spilled many KB in saying why the current [mainly] American system was shit [a position which I don't think anyone disagrees with] there's been nay a peep on what your alternative vision would really look like. KarmaPolice (talk) 01:02, 22 February 2023 (UTC)

A response like this never actually addresses the vast majority of premises either explicit or implied in support of my conclusion and instead focuses on evaluating my character. I presented evidence of the limited efficacy of police, the role they play in class warfare against the working class, a history of being the primary force to which discriminatory policies and systematic oppression is enforced. The argument primarily is a moral one. I am sure someone can just as easily argue that my opposition of child porn is “ideologically motivated” and that “I won’t move a millimetre” on such a stance. None of that is actually relevant to justifying the thing my moral stance is opposed to. It’s a red herring, an ad hominem, etc. In regards to Vitale you never offered said counter-argument to his claims, hell you never illustrated that you know what his claims even are. You states that he lives in a city of clouds and dismissed him on that basis. That’s attacking the source of an argument, not the argument itself — illustrative of the whole class of fallacies titled “fallacies of irrelevant premise”. I am not claiming I am innocent of doing this too but at the very least I am offered reasons and premises in support of my argument besides “it’s not widely supported (appeal to popularity)” or that “I believe police is necessary (fallacy of assertion)”

Don’t be naive in thinking I am the only ideological actor in this conversation. Your very stance is also in service to a political and ideological position namely in those who want to protect the interest of capitalist class. Sure you may be a socialist but acting in service to those opposed to the implementation of socialism makes you a pretty ineffective one. In fact detrimental to socialist aims. In even the case of Marxists and socialists who support policing, they still maintain that capitalist policing must be abolished. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 18:10, 23 February 2023 (UTC)

Considering the long history of worker oppression by police not only in the US, but in the UK too, OSD has a point. Police are the ones most often to break strikes, and police are the ones who enforce evictions and anti-homeless laws. This doesn't change whether you're in the UK or the US. VeeMeow? 18:37, 23 February 2023 (UTC)
Of course. The police are the instrumentality of social control. It doesn't matter who is in charge of the police, they will always protect the status quo, whatever it is, capitalist, socialist, fascist, whatever. There is one important reason that the police cannot be eliminated. That is, they do indeed form a kind of organized crime family. That family does not simply vanish when the pay checks stop coming. No. That's when the real crime would begin.

Now I am addressing OnlySortaDumb and KarmaPolice. Instead of battering one another over your differences, why not collaborate on an article about reform. How about some theoretical speculation on how to advance socialism, that you seem to want to defend? I have to say, I'd like to see solutions, if they exist. Ariel31459 (talk) 20:31, 23 February 2023 (UTC)

That's irrelevant to the discussion. VeeMeow? 00:54, 25 February 2023 (UTC)
I appreciate the motivation of your intervention, Ariel but 'collaberation' with Dumb is impossible on this topic. The splits between both our viewpoints are simply too vast; the main sticking point being that Dumb appears to view anything not complete abolishment and zero replacement as 'defending the status quo', squirts a lot of jargonese ink to disguse their non-answering of issues resulting to their policies and repeatedly disparages me personally. Coupled with the fact it's become clear over time that not only are our positions on the possible solutions not only completely irreconcilable but I rarely have the patience for long metaphysical discussions at the best of times and right now I've got flu.
Now, Dumb there's two issues here. One is ideological. Your maxim here appears to be somewhere around 'all power structures are bad'. Now, I am not an anarchist for much the same reasons I'm not a libertarian [or even say a fascist]; in that I see power as more 'a tool' than anything intrinsically bad/good. You desire to break the machine, I desire to hijack it and use it for the common good instead. Two is the fact you clearly approaching this from the theoretical end of things, while I'm coming at this from a pragmatic materialist one. I start off with the look at 'how things are' and then try to look at ways to improve things from that point.
Which is the critical issue. You desire to break everything up to make a theoretical utopia. I don't trust that on principle [and a lot of the Big Public feels the same way]. Instead, I believe we should work for 'protopia'; in that we have a kind of kaizen ethos towards society; that of continuous improvement. Oddly enough, this doesn't make me a automatic flag-bearer for dipping the status quo in aspic. KarmaPolice (talk) 16:38, 28 February 2023 (UTC)
Pretty sure Maya Angelou wasn't an anarchist. If you think police abolitionism automatically equates to anarchism you're wrong (they're separate, but related movements/schools of thought). VeeMeow? 20:35, 28 February 2023 (UTC)
I don't think that and never said they were synonymous either. KarmaPolice (talk) 21:45, 28 February 2023 (UTC)
Framing this as “see you are strictly ideological and idealist while I am pragmatic and materialist” is the kind of posturing I don’t have a whole lot of patience for. You can’t judge practicality without a stated aim. Something is pragmatic as a means when it efficiently brings about a desired end. I desire a particular conception of social justice, you desire an entirely different conception of social justice (if I were to be charitable). The issue isn’t that one of us has a more “practical” solution to some unstated problem, or that one is purely “rational” while the other ideological. The fact is what is practical to my aims is not the same as yours. To play off your machine analogy. I am not trying to break the machine, the machine is already broken and I am insisting it should be replaced and that even as designed it has never been a very good machine. We need to seek something better. You are insisting the machine can simply be repaired, and whatever flaws it has can simply be kinked out. I am telling you no, the machine is old and outdated and even though it does some things well, it’s too dangerous to keep around. We need a new machine. With that framing there is no body who is actually wrong here, no one who is fundamentally irrational. It’s two understandable responses to a broken machine. Some of us though have more skin in the game because that machine has only ever hurt us, and it’s kind of shitty to go out of one’s way to invalidate that. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 02:45, 1 March 2023 (UTC)
Framing this as “see you are strictly ideological and idealist while I am pragmatic and materialist” is the kind of posturing I don’t have a whole lot of patience for.
I can get this, actually. The line of 'we have to be pragmatic' being the one peddled by Third Way types into doing nothing much at all, lest they spilt the drink of the hallowed 'White Moderate' spoken of by Dr King. However, in this particular case that's a red herring. I am not a timid centrist and I think that's been obvious in this discussion to everyone except apparently you.
You can’t judge practicality without a stated aim'.
Did you not read the title of this discussion? Or the OP's opening paragraph?
Something is pragmatic as a means when it efficiently brings about a desired end.
Except shall your ideas do this? We don't know; what you propose has never been attempted on a modern nation-state scale. What's more, even if it does work [for discussion's sake] we do not know what the costs to society shall be. And thus, we don't know whether the benefit/cost ratio shall be ultimately positive or negative. Normally, this case I would say it would be the time for some controlled, localised experiments but the issue here is that your solution requires a complete societal rebuild top-to-bottom and thus, the experiment is too expensive to run. Even various communes wouldn't be good enough; most are too small, almost none are devoid of rules/enforcement, they still accept 'oversight' of the outside police/courts and lastly, they are voluntary - I chose to be there, and can equally choose to leave. A vital 'safety valve' which we currently don't really have in the modern world.
I desire a particular conception of social justice, you desire an entirely different conception of social justice (if I were to be charitable).
Did that backhanded vague compliment hurt you, Dumb?
The issue isn’t that one of us has a more “practical” solution to some unstated problem, or that one is purely “rational” while the other ideological. The fact is what is practical to my aims is not the same as yours. To play off your machine analogy. I am not trying to break the machine, the machine is already broken and I am insisting it should be replaced and that even as designed it has never been a very good machine. We need to seek something better. You are insisting the machine can simply be repaired, and whatever flaws it has can simply be kinked out. I am telling you no, the machine is old and outdated and even though it does some things well, it’s too dangerous to keep around. We need a new machine. With that framing there is no body who is actually wrong here, no one who is fundamentally irrational. It’s two understandable responses to a broken machine. Some of us though have more skin in the game because that machine has only ever hurt us, and it’s kind of shitty to go out of one’s way to invalidate that.
The machine is either broken or elderly, outdated and going for the wrong goals - can't be both. And as the vast majority of Americans are still housed, fed, provided with basic services and so on the latter is clearly the correct answer. Thus they all have 'skin in the game' regards to this; they all have something to lose [however small] if the machine is smashed. Even the majority of people who have been abused or failed by the machine still haven't given up on the principle of a machine existing - as seen for example, polling done on the topic of police reform/abolishment in the USA. Now if you cannot even convince the majority of the abused group to ditch the concept of policing, how the hell are you going to get them to ditch the whole capitalist framework which it's a part of? To paraphrase that old song; if you manage to do this, come and tell me how because I ain't got a fucking clue.
Which is the crux of the matter. You took much ire in me saying variants of accusations of being ideological, idealistic and so on. You accused me of 'argumentum ad populum' too. Both of these show you've missed the actual point I was making. Idealists are not automatically wrong. What is popular is not automatically right either. However, in a democratic state you cannot have a 'revolution from above' done by a small vanguard faction. In fact, you oppose power-structures and coersion so you wouldn't even have the machine to even make such a revolution. No. Your only real hope is that the current machine utterly falls to bits and then you can build on the ashes. Thus, effectively you need to oppose me on a kind of 'revolutionary defeatism'; true reforms might make the structure more solid and with greater public support. Not the first time I've heard a variant of this argument either.
Lastly, don't you insinuate that I do not know what evils this machine can inflict. If nothing else, you know nothing about me personally. I have worked hard to not make this discussion personal. KarmaPolice (talk) 12:50, 2 March 2023 (UTC)
Why are you tying my grievances about pragmatist posturing to something about being a timid centrist? This isn’t an argument I am making. Who or what is this for? - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 04:00, 3 March 2023 (UTC)

Addressing your other points.

The machine is either broken or elderly, outdated and going for the wrong goals - can't be both.

Why not? When it comes to real machines they can be designed for malicious reasons, break down because of age, require repair, experience mechanical failure due to wear and tear. Outdated and elderly does not equate to “not broken”. There is no logical contradiction, no positive reason why it can’t be.

Even the majority of people who have been abused or failed by the machine still haven't given up on the principle of a machine existing - as seen for example, polling done on the topic of police reform/abolishment in the USA. Now if you cannot even convince the majority of the abused group to ditch the concept of policing, how the hell are you going to get them to ditch the whole capitalist framework which it's a part of?

And on that basis wouldn’t that just reduce itself down to an argument that’s fundamentally anti-socialist? Many a working class person has been subjected to a cultural superstructure that has imbued them with false consciousness. It doesn’t then follow because socialism is unpopular among workers in the context of a place like the US that the premise of anti-capitalism is therefore false. Same principle applies to various marginalized groups and the institution of policing. Copaganda is effective.

...in a democratic state you cannot have a 'revolution from above' done by a small vanguard faction. In fact, you oppose power-structures and coersion so you wouldn't even have the machine to even make such a revolution. No. Your only real hope is that the current machine utterly falls to bits and then you can build on the ashes. Thus, effectively you need to oppose me on a kind of 'revolutionary defeatism'; true reforms might make the structure more solid and with greater public support. Not the first time I've heard a variant of this argument either.

I never said I opposed power-structures or coercion however. You’re imposing a view onto me and then making inferences from that to what conclusions I must hold. There isn’t a true dichotomy between “revolution” or “reform”. Even certain schools of anarchism acknowledge a third-option in building “dual power” operations from the bottom-up as a kind of gradualism. I prefer wobbly-style unionization and grassroots community organization as praxis to building workplace democracy and bottom-up political organization — hopefully in the aim to create a degrowth economy. My opposition to policing is on principle to the ideals that inform why I hold those other opinions. There is a reason why cops are not allowed to join the IWW, it’s not solely because some anarchist theorist determined cops to be bad (the IWW is officially not an anarchist organization FYI). The reason being is because the actions and goals of the IWW are fundamentally incompatible with the job duties of the police. It would be no different then welcoming landlords or bosses. You cannot abolish capitalism working with capitalists actively maintaining capitalism. It’s why in marxist theory cops are classed a “class traitors”. Defending cops is akin to defending scabs, from the view of folks wishing to organize things like general strikes. You are fundamentally undermining the class interests of workers in the context of labour politics. Police have always been the opposition. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 18:09, 3 March 2023 (UTC)