RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive441

From RationalWiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

This is an archive page, last updated 27 September 2023. Please do not make edits to this page.
Archives for this talk page:
<1>, <2>, <3>, <4>, <5>, <6>, <7>, <8>, <9>, <10>, <11>, <12>, <13>, <14>, <15>, <16>, <17>, <18>, <19>, <20>, <21>, <22>, <23>, <24>, <25>, <26>, <27>, <28>, <29>, <30>, <31>, <32>, <33>, <34>, <35>, <36>, <37>, <38>, <39>, <40>, <41>, <42>, <43>, <44>, <45>, <46>, <47>, <48>, <49>, <50>, <51>, <52>, <53>, <54>, <55>, <56>, <57>, <58>, <59>, <60>, <61>, <62>, <63>, <64>, <65>, <66>, <67>, <68>, <69>, <70>, <71>, <72>, <73>, <74>, <75>, <76>, <77>, <78>, <79>, <80>, <81>, <82>, <83>, <84>, <85>, <86>, <87>, <88>, <89>, <90>, <91>, <92>, <93>, <94>, <95>, <96>, <97>, <98>, <99>, <100>, <101>, <102>, <103>, <104>, <105>, <106>, <107>, <108>, <109>, <110>, <111>, <112>, <113>, <114>, <115>, <116>, <117>, <118>, <119>, <120>, <121>, <122>, <123>, <124>, <125>, <126>, <127>, <128>, <129>, <130>, <131>, <132>, <133>, <134>, <135>, <136>, <137>, <138>, <139>, <140>, <141>, <142>, <143>, <144>, <145>, <146>, <147>, <148>, <149>, <150>, <151>, <152>, <153>, <154>, <155>, <156>, <157>, <158>, <159>, <160>, <161>, <162>, <163>, <164>, <165>, <166>, <167>, <168>, <169>, <170>, <171>, <172>, <173>, <174>, <175>, <176>, <177>, <178>, <179>, <180>, <181>, <182>, <183>, <184>, <185>, <186>, <187>, <188>, <189>, <190>, <191>, <192>, <193>, <194>, <195>, <196>, <197>, <198>, <199>, <200>, <201>, <202>, <203>, <204>, <205>, <206>, <207>, <208>, <209>, <210>, <211>, <212>, <213>, <214>, <215>, <216>, <217>, <218>, <219>, <220>, <221>, <222>, <223>, <224>, <224½>, <225>, <226>, <227>, <228>, <229>, <230>, <231>, <232>, <233>, <234>, <235>, <236>, <237>, <238>, <239>, <240>, <241>, <242>, <243>, <244>, <245>, <246>, <247>, <248>, <249>, <250>, <251>, <252>, <253>, <254>, <255>, <256>, <257>, <258>, <259>, <260>, <261>, <262>, <263>, <264>, <265>, <266>, <267>, <268>, <269>, <270>, <271>, <272>, <273>, <274>, <275>, <276>, <277>, <278>, <279>, <280>, <281>, <282>, <283>, <284>, <285>, <286>, <287>, <288>, <289>, <290>, <291>, <292>, <293>, <294>, <295>, <296>, <297>, <298>, <299>, <300>, <301>, <302>, <303>, <304>, <305>, <306>, <307>, <308>, <309>, <310>, <311>, <312>, <313>, <314>, <315>, <316>, <317>, <318>, <319>, <320>, <321>, <322>, <323>, <324>, <325>, <326>, <327>, <328>, <329>, <330>, <331>, <332>, <333>, <334>, <335>, <336>, <337>, <338>, <339>, <340>, <341>, <342>, <343>, <344>, <345>, <346>, <347>, <348>, <349>, <350>, <351>, <352>, <353>, <354>, <355>, <356>, <357>, <358>, <359>, <360>, <361>, <362>, <363>, <364>, <365>, <366>, <367>, <368>, <369>, <370>, <371>, <372>, <373>, <374>, <375>, <376>, <377>, <378>, <379>, <380>, <381>, <382>, <383>, <384>, <385>, <386>, <387>, <388>, <389>, <390>, <391>, <392>, <393>, <394>, <395>, <396>, <397>, <398>, <399>, <400>, <401>, <402>, <403>, <404>, <405>, <406>, <407>, <408>, <409>, <410>, <411>, <412>, <413>, <414>, <415>, <416>, <417>, <418>, <419>, <420>, <421>, <422>, <423>, <424>, <425>, <426>, <427>, <428>, <429>, <430>, <431>, <432>, <433>, <434>, <435>, <436>, <437>, <438>, <439>, <440>, <442>, <443>, <444>, <445>, <446>, <447>, <448>, <449>, <450>, <451>, <452>, <453>, <454>, <455>, <456>
, (new)(back)

I, um, what is this nonsense?!?

I've gotta say, I'm a bit disappointed in Chris Pratt for stooping to taking a role in blatantly obvious Religious Right persecution complex Blue Lives Matter propaganda. Not that I have anything against cops or Christians in general (though I do see the problems in both institutions), but come on, obvious right-wing nonsense is obvious. --Luigifan18 (talk) 16:02, 13 August 2023 (UTC)

Hard Drive is a satire siteIluzasipalStone them! 18:50, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
Hard Drive is a very serious news journalism site for very serious gamers who care about the real issues. Such as how skills in games such as Doom translate to real afterlife, or the use of retro consoles as improvised weapons. It is necessary reading in order to stay informed if you too are one of the most oppressed people groups on earth: gamers. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 19:23, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
"Ukrainian soldiers are using a handheld video game console to operate machine gun mounts, per reports. The US Navy has also utilized Xbox controllers in the past."[1] Bongolian (talk) 20:06, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
Yeah, if you follow the link to the article, most of it is actually parodying his animation voice over work (such as his future affiliation with an apparent upcoming GarfieldWikipedia movie, why, Hollywood, why?). Pratt's also rumored to be a Hillsong affiliated church member (which I think Pratt denied, but others question that denial) which explains the homophobic / religion cop jokes.BobJohnson (talk) 20:58, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
More importantly, why do they think anyone wants a new Garfield film? Moon Sock (talk) 21:03, 13 August 2023 (UTC)

My weird hatred of Philosphers

I had an outbursts here a few weeks ago where I ranted that I hated philosophers. It's made me reflect a bit and think over why I don't like the field. I think my issue with philosophy is mostly a distrust of its conclusions. I feel that any process which could conclude "nothing am real, you can't prove you exist!" is just BS, but I realize I am being unfair. So I should probably start from ground zero.

What does a modern philosopher do? What problems are they concerned with, and what are developments in their field that they are excited about? MirrorIrorriM (talk) 15:35, 8 August 2023 (UTC)

You may as well ask. What does a scientist do? What problems are scientists concerned with, and what are developments in their field that they are excited about?
Someone working with polymers is going to answer that differently to someone looking at spending habits to someone looking at quarks. Likewise, for philosophy, someone working on the philosophy of pedagogy is going to answer that differently to someone working on democratic theory to someone working on non-bivalent logic.
It sounds like you have a very, self-admittedly, shallow grasp of what philosophy is and are generalising from these very half-formed ideas to the entire field. I can't entirely blame you. As an educator that teaches philosophy I know that questions like "how do you know that what you experience is real?" are often used as a jumping off point for introducing ideas like scepticism and epistemology, and many educators either don't have the time or experience to take the discussion much further than that surface level r/Iam12andthisisdeep introduction. But rest assured that such questions/dramatic statements tend to be the start of much more thought provoking debates rather than the memetic thought-terminating conclusions they are often assumed to be by those 'outside of the fold' so to speak. Tikitime2 (talk) 15:52, 8 August 2023 (UTC)
To use Aristotle as an example: The Poetics (literary theory) is very different from the Categories (classical logic) as they are two very separate fields of inquiry. Carthage (talk) 16:28, 8 August 2023 (UTC)
Also a lot of people sort of form ad hoc philosophical theories of their own that may or may not match what is found in the literature but in a "folksy" form (not to devalue the experiences of the common person, to do otherwise would be patronizing, insulting, and just general classist bigotry). However, to use the example put out by the OP, "common sense" objections to philosophical analyses often tend to fall apart under scrutiny. It's good you can recognize your shortcomings in this aspect. Not many people will own up to that. I certainly struggle with pride. Carthage (talk) 16:31, 8 August 2023 (UTC)
The whole "nothing am real" thing is basically about challenging our base assumptions. We rely upon our senses to gather information about the world, and our memories to keep track of what we have learned. But what if our memory is wrong; how would we know what's a "real" memory and a "fake" memory? What if our senses are incorrect? Heck, one of the most startling discoveries for early scientists must very well have been that light exists outside of the visible spectrum, or that sounds exist above or below our hearing range. What must early scholars have thought, to realize that much of the world that exists can't even be observed by our own hands, eyes or ears, that we need to build tools to detect such things? The absurdity that atoms are almost entirely empty space is something we take for granted today, but was absolutely mindboggling for the physicists of just a few generations prior.

If there is a problem with philosophy, it's the human problem; philosophers want the world to work a certain way, because we all do. We are all prone to reaching conclusions that make us feel good, especially ones that grant us a sense of moral superiority, and so philosophers are often drawn to contradictory or disproven ideologies just like everyone else. But unlike everyone else, philosophers will try to examine and hunt down the absurdities within a moral framework, and hopefully not shy away from a discovery just because it inconveniences their worldview. CorruptUser 17:31, 8 August 2023 (UTC)

Thank you everyone for the answers, I appreciate it. A lot of the answers include talking a philosopher "working" towards solving a problem in something like Democratic Theory. What does an example of a philosopher's work look like? As an engineer, my work is often either collecting data, brainstorming failure modes, quantifying risk, and writing test plans to ensure consistency / repeatability of results. A scientist may (I presume) do something like try to solve a mathematical problem or work with mathematicians to find a law or formula which correlates data they observe, and try to hunt for problems or untested waters in existing theories or laws. What would be an example of a philosopher "hunting down an absurdity"? MirrorIrorriM (talk) 20:10, 8 August 2023 (UTC)
I think philosophers have a bad rep in the Anglosphere partly because they do not seem to 'produce' anything. They're the apex of the 'cloistered intellectual'; at least historians, economists, sociologists, linguists etc can be shown to have some 'real world' use, even if it is viewed as somewhat marginal. The 'real world use' mentality is strong in both 'ends' of Anglo society too; the working stiffs think the idea of a person going off for years [and paying for it!] to basically, learn about 'ways to live by' is a load of navel-gazing wankery and the very idea that our supposed elites actually thinking beyond their own selfish desires and wondering if their overweening 'master ethic' might be misplaced is so laughable I think I'd wet myself. Even much of the Anglo middle classes are sufficiently 'practical' in viewpoint that philosophy doesn't really have much a good rep [I mean, what's the job market for philosophers these days?]. The fact that most philosophers have a tendency to write tomes as thick as phone books, dense as cement with a reading level of 'is another philosopher' doesn't help matters.
However, I think the most critical issue is that almost nobody in the Anglosphere learns logic. We are generally taught not to reason, just to remember. Thus, a philosopher - if caught amongst the 'big public' is often unintelligable because our brains quite literally can't go off the rails which have been set down beforehand. KarmaPolice (talk) 20:23, 8 August 2023 (UTC)
So @MirrorIrorriM, let's trying using the example you selected to see if we can make things a little more concrete and easier to visualise. Take our hypothetical philosopher working in democratic theory. Let's say they are on a project to examine the criticisms of, for example, consensus democracy. Their work may involve scouring the literature and trying to put together the most in depth overview of those criticisms that they can and then giving an evaluation of each one with reference to the existing evidence and the validity of the arguments (this is where logic comes in and why philosophy students are expected to be au fait with concepts and tools like fallacies, argument diagrams, standard form etc).
There work could also be somewhat more empirical in places. Instead of just evaluating the moral and purely abstract arguments perhaps they are, maybe on a seperate project, examining historical and contemporary accounts of consensus democracy in action and then writing papers about what can reasonably be drawn from these accounts.
Now at this point, you might be thinking... wait wouldn't it make more sense to just have say a historian do this? And, while that may seem the case at first that overlook the philosopher as a specialist in examining the implications of those historical examples and how they might bolster or disprove certain theories. In many cases this philosopher might collaborate with historians or anthropologists to decypher the more specialist materials or even work with them gather the research data first-hand; and in many more cases our philosopher might even have their own academic credentials in said field - it's not uncommon to stumble across philosophers of biology who have biology degrees and philosophers of pedagogy who were once primary school teachers. So while the bulk of their work is going to involve reading papers and evaluating the arguments and inferences made from those findings there may also be more hands on collaborations in places depending on the nature of their work, their relevant qualifications and the resources to hand. I hope that has helped made the picture a little clearer when it comes to what philosophers actually do? Tikitime2 (talk) 21:38, 8 August 2023 (UTC)
@Tikitime2 Yes that helps a lot. Thank you for taking the time to share it. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 04:06, 9 August 2023 (UTC)
Glad to hear it. I tend to market philosophy as "steroids for the mind", on its own it can seem pretty inert but studying philosophy familiarises you with the big conceptual problems that rear up in almost every intellectual endevour and really helps you tackle the core questions of any field. It's a great tool for developing a deeper conceptual understanding of a topic and how its findings & methods relate to various hypothesis and adjacent fields. If you want to pursue this, you can go two ways. You can either try and work your way through 'the cannon', which can be atrociously dry and difficult depending on your investment in the subject and who you consider canonical. Alternatively, especially in your case, it may be worth just figuring out what topics really interest you and seeing if you can find philosophy on that topic, maybe even something written by a relatively inter-disciplinary author... like a book on the philosophy of mathematics written by a bona fide mathematician, or political philosophy that is written by someone who is also a historian of sorts <- that can do a lot to help alleviate the dryness if "pure" theory feels a little lifeless to you! Tikitime2 (talk) 09:09, 9 August 2023 (UTC)
The Repugnant Conclusion is a fairly recent thought experiment, that highlights some absurdities in utilitarian ethics.
Basically, you have an isolated island, where there's plenty of resources, fresh air and water, etc, and a small group of people live an idyllic life. This is scenario "A". Pretty great, right? Now another island "poofs" into existence with the same number of people, but there's few resources and they all live a meager existence that is only just barely better than death. This is scenario "A-". It's clear that A- is at least as good as A, you would not be making this world better by sinking the second island into the ocean. Now let's say you can take some resources from the first island, and give it to the second island, the life of both islands is still pretty good and the average happiness/utility is greater. This is scenario "B+", and surely this is a better scenario than A-. Now the islands get smooshed together, in scenario "B", without anyone's lives being disrupted, so B is at least equivalent to B+.
Since B >= B+ >= A- >= A, it's clear that B >= A.
Now repeat the process with a third island. And again and again, until scenario "Z", where you have a giant island full of squalor, with people living rather pathetic lives, but the sum-total of their happiness/utility is greater than that of the original scenario A.
What does this imply? Well, consider abortion. Is it "moral" to bring into the world "unwanted" children, so long as we provide resources via charity or the government, and the end result is a world with a higher sum-total of utility, even if the average utility decreases? The repugnant conclusions suggests that yes, we should be encouraging this scenario. Immigration is another consideration, and the conclusion really is "open borders" to some degree. CorruptUser 13:46, 9 August 2023 (UTC)
I had the opposite feeling about philosophers when I was a young man. I understood a philosopher to be a special kind of person, a unicorn among intellectuals. One could say there is no real difference between the concept of philosophy and the concept of intellectualism. Philosophers and intellectuals are doing the same sorts of things and tend to be the same sorts of people. Often philosophers, and intellectuals of all sorts, abuse language in ways that skeptics (also philosophers) criticize. 'We can't prove anything really exists.' That always depends on what you mean by "prove" and what you mean by "exist." Empirical methods can deal with these questions in a very straight forward manner, though not always to the satisfaction of intellectuals unwilling to abridge their understandings.Ariel31459 (talk) 15:41, 9 August 2023 (UTC)
@Ariel31459 Sorry, how do empirical methods answer the question of what you mean by "exist"? Do you mean just by asking people what they mean? Tikitime2 (talk) 16:53, 9 August 2023 (UTC)
@Tikitime2 Hello! Pleased to meet you. I was tempted to distinguish academic from non-academic philosophy, but thought better of it. I confess to being obliged to Chomsky for my view of semantics, and David Hume for my skepticism. By empirical methods I mean those used in the sense of Hume's "easy philosophy," expressed at length in his Enquiry... Objects are said to exist if they make a common impression upon our senses. This is what the word meant before a few idealists got their hands on it. We assume our thoughts exist, though this appropriates a different connotation to the idea of sensory existence.
My favorite story about this notion of how we know something really exists comes from DT Suzuki. He attended a conference on ontology in Hawaii some time in the middle of the 20th century. The topic of the moment was (approximately): how to recognize objects that really exist. The moderator asked Suzuki, pointing to the conference table where they all sat, "Does this table exist professor Suzuki?" Suzuki answered with a word, "yes!" The moderator continued, "In what way does it exist professor?" to which Suzuki replied, "...in every way." Ariel31459 (talk) 19:06, 9 August 2023 (UTC)
@Ariel31459 Ah, I get you. I thought you were about to go down the crude scientism route. I'm probably in quite a similar boat to you when it comes to things like "prove". Like we can't get 100% certainty of anything but that shouldn't prevent us from being able to use the word prove in our conversations as something distinct and above "have evidence for", even if it's just a quantitive distinction. Tikitime2 (talk) 19:30, 9 August 2023 (UTC)

No major philosopher in the last 2’000 years has ever forwarded the stance “nothing am real, you can't prove you exist!", not even Descartes. Who, in fact, concluded that he could very much prove that he was real — the man wasn’t really endorsing external world skepticism. The guy just wanted to establish what he could know for certain.

If you don’t really understand the content of a given domain how can you possibly effectively critique it? Three major branches of philosophy is epistemology, ethics, and logic. (Note these are not the only three branches of philosophy).

Without propositional logic as developed in the centuries prior, we would not have the modern computer. The use of “logic-gates” in computer circuitry is not a misnomer.

Epistemology, as a field, does not simply concern itself solely with the question of “what is knowledge?”. It also concerns itself with the standards or rational justification. Which you have noticed is kind of a big part of what it means to be a scientific skeptic. Scientific skepticism is an epistemological tradition that has its roots in philosophy; think empiricism, the logical positivist movement, Popper’s falsification principle, Clifford’s “Ethics of Belief”, Russell's Teapot, etc.

A pet peeve of mine is when some engineers shit on philosophy, but then call themselves a pragmatist as if that isn’t a philosophy.

I would find it hard to believe if the realm of ethics was completely irrelevant to you. There are fields of medical ethics, engineering ethics, and business ethics and they are all taught by philosophy departments in colleges/universities the world over.

Would you ask an engineer about the morality of euthanasia? How would a physicists settle the question of the ethics of eating meat?

I lean strongly into the analytical tradition, and for me philosophy is broadly about the application of conceptual and linguistic analysis, the application of logic, sometimes the use of mathematics, and even appealing to existing empirical evidence, to the questions regarding fundamental and abstract concepts/ideas relevant to everyday life. Things like existence, morality, knowledge, belief, meaning, truth etc.

In a nutshell, its the application of critical thinking to the analysis of abstract questions, and attempts to answer them with a certain degree of systematic rigour. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 17:19, 9 August 2023 (UTC)

Personally, I don’t think a society that discourages critical thought regarding abstract concepts and questions would be the sort of society that embraces independent thought. It has a strong element of anti-intellectualism, and anti-skepticism to it. Something great for politically authoritarian regimes who want widespread conformity and total uncritical acceptance of dominant cultural dogma however. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 17:38, 9 August 2023 (UTC)
I've always considered questions of right and wrong to be split into the classifications of terminal goals and instrumental goals, where a terminal goal is something you want just because you want it (I want to survive) and instrumental goals are things you want in order to achieve your terminal goals (I want to make money in order afford rent, because without affording rent I will be cold in the winter, ergo I will freeze to death and fail to survive if I do not make money). I've always assumed the most anyone can do is show what the consequences of actions are (drinking water is more effective at hydration than alcohol), but can never say what you should want (I've heard this referred to as the Is-Ought problem). In mainstream philosophy, can you "prove" that a position is ethical, or only that a policy or action is consistent with or would further a set of "core tenants"? MirrorIrorriM (talk) 21:25, 11 August 2023 (UTC)
I mean that sort of speculation and question asking is kind of what philosophy is about. The expectation however within discipline is to think critically about what is implied by what you say, and how others may object to it or respond. Your framing takes a sort of position that is very similar to ethical egoismWikipedia — which is the stance that what is moral is what most satisfies your desires as an individual. Examples of egoists would be of the likes of Max StirnerWikipedia and Ayn Rand (which it should be said Rand’s status as a philosopher is highly contested, as she is extremely popular to dunk on). A utilitarian may object to egoism because they would argue that your own wants have no special character or property that makes them distinct from anyone else’s particular wants. You are also right that just because you want something doesn’t particularly imply that it should be wanted, or even that you should act upon your wants. That gets into the topic of meta-ethicsWikipedia, and touches upon David Hume’s particular brand of moral skepticism. Immanuel Kant developed his moral philosophy in part as a reaction to Hume’s is/ought problem. Kant made a distinction between hypothetical and categorical imperatives, the former being of the kind “If you value X then do Y”. This is usually under the hidden premise that doing Y reliably produces X. This is kind of what your whole “instrumental” and “core” tenet system touches upon without being aware that is an idea that is about 300+ years old. Kant thought that there existed categorial imperatives that would dictate doing Y because Y is in of itself of inherent value. It is what is good. He believed that his principle of universal maxim provided a foundation dictated by reason alone to what is good or bad. This forms the basis of his deontological theory. Deontological theories are theories that view morality as a set of duties or obligations that are dictated by rationality itself. Whether or not philosophers can “prove” ethical propositions depends on what you mean by proof, and what exactly ethical propositions are supposed to be. I am personally a skeptic like Hume, and I don’t personally think that Kant successfully handles the is/ought problem. I am also a subscriber to error theoryWikipedia, which makes me inclined to say genuine moral facts do not exist. This puts me in the minority of philosophers. Most think that genuine objective moral facts, do actually exist. Those individuals would be classed as moral realistsWikipedia - Only Sort of Dumb (talk)
I would argue even if pursuit of morals or emotional ideals are fundamentally prone to error, I would rather live in the world where we strive to maintain rights and pursue greatness as opposed to a purely mechanistic one that views people as no different than any other collection of atoms. This is in-spite of the fact that I believe there is no magic value or property of humans that cannot be explained by physics, and humans are just collections of atoms. Instead, I think that it would lead to people having the best standard of living if we intentionally go against the fact of humans and life being mundane and instead elevate certain ideals despite a lack of objective purpose. Essentially, I think it is best if we pretend that we humans, and other life forms, are magic and special and that our happiness deserves to be protected. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 02:34, 15 August 2023 (UTC)

The Internet Archive lawsuit

Heyo guys. Been thinking about this WIGO World entry:

Record labels sue the Internet Archive over copyrighted vinyl works from the 1890s–1950s. They want $412 million dollars. The original musicians are dead. The Archive will also likely pay an undisclosed amount to major book publishers due to a separate lawsuit.

I wanna know what we all think of this. Does the Internet Archive have a chance of winning, or is this completely in the record labels' favour? If the IA does lose, what'll happen to it? Can the website survive if it loses? That would be so much information permanently lost. (っ◔◡◔)っ ♥ Natsuki Marx ♥ (talk) 13:09, 13 August 2023 (UTC)

I think that all publishing companies are bastards. Carthage (talk) 13:23, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
The record companies will likely win this one I think, due to current copyright protection being massively extended over time. This is less a case though of copyright being a Good Thing that Works to Protect the Work of the Artist and more a case of copyright being way overblown these days and more used as a dumb power wedge by rent-seekers. I believe this lawsuit is targeting the IA's "Great 78s" project, and at this time the copyright on most of these works is 100 years. I would postulate that an extremely large percentage of these works are completely forgotten except for era enthusiasts and collectors, and there is very little if any chance that most of the works will be published at all (let alone the artists, who I'm sure are mostly dead, seeing any payments for anything).
In other words, looking at their Mastodon feed, while there are some significant "names" (if you know the era) like Kid Ory, Spike Jones, and Duke Ellington in their list, there's also plenty of more "obscure" shit like "the Russ David Orchestra", "Dick Todd", "Jerry Cooper", and the "Hoosier Hot Shots". Some of the later aren't completely unknown artists at all (two of these four have Wiki entries) but I imagine very few people today would know them offhand. And when even the "big names" in the list all were dead by the 1970s, who is this protection really benefiting? BobJohnson (talk) 16:58, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
Based on the initial court judgment, it does not look very promising IA's potential legal appeal. The judge ruled, "At bottom, IA’s fair use defense rests on the notion that lawfully acquiring a copyrighted print book entitles the recipient to make an unauthorized copy and distribute it in place of the print book, so long as it does not simultaneously lend the print book. But no case or legal principle supports that notion. Every authority points the other direction."[2] Whether IA will survive the lawsuits is an open question. Judgment amounts often get reduced on appeal. Bongolian (talk) 18:13, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
I must reiterate: All publishing companies are bastards. Carthage (talk) 18:46, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
Their entire annual revenue (read: before costs are incurred) as an organization is about 40 million. I hope the Wayback Machine survives all this. I wish this other stuff wasn't happening to them either and they could keep hosting these other works but at bare minimum the Wayback Machine is their big draw. Chillpilled (talk) 05:39, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
This is the main reason I think the IA should 'stick to the knitting' and leave this stuff to other orgs. So if one goes down, it don't take the whole row down with them. KarmaPolice (talk) 10:45, 14 August 2023 (UTC)

Tankie and 9/11 truther overlap

Tankies usually hate the USA which is why they support russia in Russo-Ukrainian war. 9/11 truthers often believe that George W. Bush did 9/11 so that he could use it as an excuse to invade countries, So are many 9/11 truthers tankies and tankies 9/11 truthers ←§ Edward the eight (talk) 06:33, 14 August 2023 (UTC)

Resident "sort-of" Tankie here. I'm sure there are 9/11 "skeptics" in the tankie sphere, but honestly, in about 4 years of being in online and in-person spaces, I've not really met or interacted with them, so I would imagine they are quite a fringe element - though they probably do exist. My own position is that the U.S. has never needed to stage terrorist attacks on its own soil to justify an invasion, though it certainly has considered it, and honestly the U.S's track record is bad enough without having to speculate about 9/11 - which probably just went down the way most believe it went down.
So no, I don't think many tankies feel the need to speculate about 9/11 and I don't think many 9/11 'truthers' actually have a coherent enough analysis of world-politics or grasp of what marxism is to be meaningfully called a 'tankie', in fact they might as well be anarchists half the time. And that's ignoring that 9/11 conspiracy theories just as often tie in with libertarian styled anti-marxist conspiracies about NWO as they do leftist flavoured one's. Tikitime2 (talk) 13:58, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
As if anarchist theory isn't something that exists. You call yourself half-way between anarchism and Marxism. I mean, sure there are fringe elements, but are people like Noam Chompsky or Angela Davis "9/11 nutters"? I don't think so. To imply otherwise is just insulting. Carthage (talk) 14:18, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
Hey Carthage, not sure if you're responding to me or Edward? I certainly wouldn't consider either author to be crazy. Tikitime2 (talk) 14:25, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
I was responding to your assertion that many 9/11 truthers are anarchists. In all the anarchist spaces I've been in (I myself am "merely" a radical libertarian socialist) I've never encountered any bonafide truthers or general conspiracy theorists. You don't need to invoke a willful cabal of malign intent when systems out in the open work just as well, and are much friendlier to Occam. In general you'll find 9/11 truthism on the right more often than not, though I don't doubt there are fringe elements on the left. Carthage (talk) 14:30, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
I made no such assertion Carthage. I merely stated that where conspiratorial thinking and leftism overlaps it can just as easily be called anarchist as it can be called 'tankie'. My experience in anarchist space is much the same as yours, generally speaking conspiracy theorists are not liked or listened to much. They tend to undermine the groups credibility and often harbour anti-semitic views and so where anarchists do encounter conspiracy theories they tend to treat them with a lot of suspicion.
In my opinion liberal attempts to lump the far-left in with the conspiracy theory movement are often an attempt to strawman the left by proxy. Grouping their analysis and grievances in with easily debunkable and dismissive horse-shit so they don't actually have to engage with the claims in good faith. Tikitime2 (talk) 14:35, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
Yeah that's always annoying. However, getting rightly angry over it will get you painted as irrational. It's counterproductive, no matter how justified. Either way liberals often just ignore what you say anyways, and nutpick certain parts of your argument when they do actually engage, but for lurkers it makes you present a stronger case. Carthage (talk) 14:55, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
TBH I don't know how much of that is an issue with Liberals as opposed to just being the unfortunate nature of political disagreement. When I was a liberal I was convinced anarchists were the insane 2-dimensional stereotypes they were often made out to be. Then getting educated and involved in politics I became an anarchist and suddenly I was aware of how my political positions were being distorted by smug liberals like I used to be. Then I had a few life experiences, read some different stuff, spoke to different people and started coming round to a more Marxist-Lenninist perspective and found anarchists doing the exact same shit to me that I saw the liberals doing to them back when I was a 'capital A' anarchist. And I find myself now, when I get into those heated exchanges, having to moderate myself and exercise mindfulness to avoid over-simplifying the anarchist or the liberal view. I think politics really gets to the nub of how someone concieves of morality, the world and themselves so it can become a very high-stakes and adrenalised discussion that doesn't always bring out the best in us intellectually, or socially. And frankly, the people who think they are above this.. that seem to believe they are too smarty pants level-headed super rational to get caught up in silly things like ideology or political tribalism are often the worst offenders as they tend to be incapable of spotting the rot within themselves! Tikitime2 (talk) 17:54, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
From what I've observed, most 'Tankies' aren't pro-Russian, they're merely anti-American. If you look at the war reporting of the likes of say, the Morning Star [British orthodox Communist paper] or Socialist Worker [British Trotskyite paper] they're both very much of the view that this is nothing more than a NATO proxy war for old-fashioned 'imperialist' motives [power, export markets] as well as more oil for the various military-industrial machines, and that both sides are about equally shit [though now some are starting to say it's a proxy NATO-China war]. I'm a tankie enough to get what they mean about this, but enough of a heretic to argue that it's not equally shit [Precis: our bourgeois democracies may be corrupt and severely hollowed-out but they are superior to the Russian/Chinese forms of state because ours still has enough freedom within it to allow organic growth to ideally, something better]. Whether you consider the above view to be a 'conspiracy theory' is naturally, up to you.
With Sept 11... I mean, I did hear a very few real conspiricy theories about it from the 'hard left', but they were very minority views. I mean, if nothing else if it was a CIA job to help kick off an orgy of military spending, they wouldn't have bloody framed Saudis [said capitalist elites love them!], but Iraqis as the pilots etc. Slightly more plausable is that 'the CIA knew and let it happen', but I've come to the conclusion that this theory is too much a credit to the CIA re their actual abilities of detection and secret-keeping.
However, I do think what needs to be remembered is that some of the dimmer end of the hard left do have a kinda paranoid suspicions towards 'smoke filled rooms' of leading capitalists secretly steering the world for their own benefit, which can functionally look very similar to say, the 'International Jewish conspiracy' peddled by the far right [to the point one can be mistaken for the other]. Now, if you think that meetings like Davos, Bilderberg etc are to cement and deepen the world's capitalist hegemon... again, whether this is considered a 'conspiracy theory' or mere statment of the bleeding obvious is, again up to you.
But to be honest... how many right-wing 'truthers' are still out there? It was 22 years ago now. Or has it continued to be an evergreen topic to some, like how in the UK the Daily Express still wanks itself dry over Princess Diana [died, 1997]. KarmaPolice (talk) 20:37, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
From what I recall, the type of person "back in the day" that spouted 9/11 truther stuff did "lean left"... but certainly not exclusively. In the US, prior to the Trump GOP takeover, no real political bias had a lock on the conspiracy theory market, particularly for this type of conspiracy which was "anti-government" paranoid style. As an example, extreme fringe (read: "who?") truther presidential candidates include both a Democrat (Jeff BossWikipedia) and a Republican (John BuchananWikipedia).
I don't think 9/11 truthism is terribly prominent anymore (at least from what I can tell). It's been 22 years after all, and the conspiracy theory crowd has moved onto more outlandish things (QAnon, COVID-19, etc.) I'm sure there is a bit of a lingering faction out there that clings onto it, of course, kind of like how water fluoridation lingers as a conspiracy theory well past its peak during the John Birch Society days. But there's a lot of "recency bias" in the conspiracy crowd. Currently their topic du jour in the conspiracy groups online is the Maui fires, for instance. Maybe every now and then a historical conspiracy will pop up, but in general it seems this crowd seems to change topics largely as the news cycle changes... BobJohnson (talk) 20:59, 14 August 2023 (UTC)
Y'all are nuts. I remember the exact chair I was sitting in in French class 8th grade. One of my classmates said 'I heard about a Chinese flight' another immediately shouted 'bomb the chinese!' But in a weird still trying to make everything a joke. I never liked it. I don't have a good answer as to how the US let it happen but I do understand how a building collapsing straight down might throw shrapnel at building 7. A lot of conservative Christian libertarians are picking up the 'inside job' whip. I spent a lot longer looking for it, they are way more convinced, they are very prone to cognitive bias, and as I warned you dipshits before Jan 6, they exist in big widespread numbers. if you just focus on the nuts, you're forgetting about the tree the nuts fall off.2600:8804:500:FE90:5504:A5D7:2E05:FDEA (talk) 04:43, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
They are not debating it. The inside job theory is acceptable and useful. That's why you think it's dead. 2600:8804:500:FE90:5504:A5D7:2E05:FDEA (talk) 04:50, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
Don't get me wrong, there's a woo crowd that believes in everything as long as it is a conspiracy and will regurgitate any conspiracy theory that's ever been made on the planet. Alex Jones had a business after all basically doing just that (while shilling for dietary supplements, ironically which is not to be questioned). But like I said, there's a recency bias among this crowd... meaning, right now they are babbling about "direct energy weapons" or space lasers causing the Maui fires or something. I also don't think it's fair overstating the "popularity" of this crowd. Not that it's super-niche (prominent members of Congress are part of this lot), but it's also not super-mainstream. From polls (like this one produced by Statista in 2019), about 10-15% or so of Americans believe in "9/11 was an inside job". Most don't, with 45% strongly disagreeing. This percentage is about what matches QAnon belief. Yes, if you sample fundie Christians (which seem more attracted to this sort of conspiracy thing), I'm sure that percentage is higher.
However, from what I remember, 9/11 truther conspiracies used to be spouted by an audience beyond those who found a conspiracy in everything. This is what I think has sort of faded. That being said, I am willing to bet that, given that there's a somewhat justified general grouse about the government these days, far more people still wonder if the Dubya administration knew more about 9/11 than they were letting on. I personally don't think even this is plausible myself, but Dubya's administration certainly lied through their teeth about justifying the Iraq war. So for those who lived through that era, there may still be "lingering questions". This is my takeaway from the Wiki on this topicWikipedia at least; few people believe at that Dubya's administration actually planned 9/11, but many people wondered if the administration knew anything more than they did. Unfortunately recent (>2010) opinion polls on this nuance don't seem to exist. BobJohnson (talk) 13:36, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
The justifications for the Iraq war were a hot mess as our article created around that time explains. (One of the few occasions when our realtime article creations sorta worked). Our 9/11 article responds to the nutty truther claims. If anyone wants to debate these things then they can go to the article talk pages.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 16:31, 15 August 2023 (UTC)

My first attempt at Analog Horror


It is not the best I admit. --Trans Fem Agenda 20:23, 15 August 2023 (UTC)

Weird claim

So, last month I heard something that seems a bit odd...

Apparently in Canada, there's this law that if you live in a street that has a school, everyone needs to pay US$800 a month to that school and if you live on a corner, it's US$1600.

Eh, this sounds like BS. I know we have Canadian editors here, so I thought: "Maybe they can explain what's really going on and what is, probably being taken out of context?". I know provinces decide things on their own and seriously doubt that IF this would be true, that the ones that don't have CPC governors would just let this happen. Arcadium Trancefer (talk) 17:48, 15 August 2023 (UTC)

Not from Canada but, at a guess, you should spend less time reading WhatsApp chats.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 18:09, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
All the information I have seen suggests that Canada, like the US, finances schools heavily through municipal property taxes. Which are a percentage of the property's assessed value.
This makes the above scenario actually extremely slightly likely in some bizarre stopped clock scenario where the assessments work themselves out exactly this way. But generally this won't happen, and if it did, it is not for the reason described.
Perhaps there is a municipality out there somewhere has some bizarre rule like the above, but the Google searching I did could not find it. BobJohnson (talk) 18:17, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
@Bob M Actually, it was a video on youtube. Claim made by an American who heard it from her Canadian friend. Said person said something like: "yeah, it sucks and we all hate it". Arcadium Trancefer (talk) 19:40, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
@Arcadium Trancefer Claim on Youtube by one person who allegedly heard it from some third person? Is that marginally better than a WhatsApp message? Perhaps.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:51, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
@Bob M I never said I believed it. I just wanted to know what was really going on, since I'm not Canadian myself and it sounded like BS. Arcadium Trancefer (talk) 21:16, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
You could have asked that search engine starting with G something along the lines 'how does Canada fund schools' or something. The suggestion is so patently stupid I'd immediately invoke the Sagan Standard and leave it at that. But I shall say this; according to the City of Toronto's site; it charges an 'Education Tax' as part of it's annual Property Taxes. This years' appears to be about $1,400 - $1,500 for the average 3-bed home [according to Zillow]. KarmaPolice (talk) 21:30, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
Reason why I didn't do that is because the last time I heard some ridiculous claim being made, I got several results for Quora and 3 from sites that looked click-baity, so. Arcadium Trancefer (talk) 13:42, 16 August 2023 (UTC)

This site is funny.

You can make characters say anything you want with this site. Here is a sample.The Krusty Krab (talk) 22:43, 16 August 2023 (UTC)

Scottish Family Party?

Thinking of starting a page on these guys. Right wing religious cranks in Scotland. Electorally they are useless but in Scotland they are incredibly prolific. As far as I can tell almost everyone in Scotland has gotten a leaflet pushed through their door at some point rambling about how the SNP are giving primary school kids strap-on lessons or instructing teenagers on how to identify as a furry. I'm slightly worried that this might be a rather parochial concern but given how shamelessly toxic they are I'd absolutely love it if some day in the future googling their name gave you our page ripping the shit out of them. Tikitime2 (talk) 12:24, 16 August 2023 (UTC)

Seems to be rather like the anti-woke US Republicans so should be worth an article. Scream!! (talk) 14:12, 16 August 2023 (UTC)
If they run for elected office, I say they're missional. I'd also argue that they're 'unofficially missional' in the respect they appear small enough that a decent RW article is likely to be near-top of any Google listing. KarmaPolice (talk) 17:44, 17 August 2023 (UTC)

Will note at a slight tangent - since Nicola Sturgeon left and her successor was elected the SNP has been virtually invisible in the English and national (one of those cases where both have to be mentioned) news. Anna Livia (talk) 13:24, 18 August 2023 (UTC)

Question about eternity

Fundies love to claim that God does not feel the passing of time, and that the three that form the Trinity are in a perpetual present. As they claim that will happen to them once in Heaven.

Does someone know how that's supposed to work?. I have been hearing that since the first time I met an evangelical on Internet many years ago (together with insults to those who claimed that was nonsense or he was full of BS, presumably to self-feed his persecution complex). For me it's as nonsensical as the claim of God being outside space and time, thus unchanging, as others of their ilk claim too. Panzerfaust (talk) 21:27, 17 August 2023 (UTC)

It's not supposed to be logically consistent. Carthage (talk) 21:49, 17 August 2023 (UTC)
Jeremy Bearimy Revolverman (talk) 00:19, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
For a religious person, there is no need for a rational mythology. Perhaps they just want a narrative that enriches their lives. But there are others, non-believers, who have done the believers work for them. The idea that we live in a simulation is one such scientific myth. The operator of the machine that generates our universe is just some guy who manages the system. And even though we are just subprograms of that system, we can look forward to receiving the technological benefits available in the heaven of the deus absconditus of that digital reality.UncleKrampus (talk) 04:19, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
It's not difficult, really. Religion gives potted answers to the 'big questions', has the respectable sheen of something which has managed to exist for a long time, and fundie literalism is particulary appealing to people who aren't really introspective [just do/believe what the Pastor etc says]. They don't need these answers because they do not think about the questions. You've been told that Scripture says Heaven is real and all 'good people' go there, while your Pastor assures you that you are said good person. What's more to think about it? What, you some kind of Doubting Thomas? You know that the Bible tells you that Jesus holds those who Believe without demanding evidence etc as superior, right? [Not really, but actual knowledge of Scripture is actually rather poor with Fundies. But then again, why sully their believing minds with the 'evidence' of Scripture?] KarmaPolice (talk) 10:38, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
Rather than knowledge of Scripture as such, as it seems some of these know the Bible or at least the most read parts of memory, I'd rather say the context (or rather contexts) into it was written. Especially when such contexts force one to think outside Judaism or Christianity and read about other cultures and religions that existed by then (the OT accepting other deities, not demons or things as money, celebrities, social networks, etc. as Fundies claim exist, what are really Hades or Tartarus that are mentioned in the NT, etc). Of course, as you note, these people just obey and accept what the Pastor says, not caring about that, and even if you can read the Bible freely you must accept how such person rationalises those thorny bits and for everything else apologetics exist for some reason.
The more I know of these people, the more cultish they seem to me. Panzerfaust (talk) 12:21, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
IMHO *cough* fundies really aren't known for having a solid grasp of the Bible. At least, so many of them embrace concepts with either flimsy Biblical support (Rapture) or, by any charitable reading of the Christian Bible, would likely be heresy (prosperity gospel).
But, yeah, even when reading the Bible, the concept of heaven is pretty wishy-washy and vague. There are a couple places someone actually tries to describe a more concrete vision of heaven in the Bible, and these passages stand out in their superficial adoration of "earthly riches" (Revelation 21:9-26). Most of it though tends to frame heaven as a timeless place where all of the shittiness of life is whisked away, if you only adore the Big Spirit in the Sky. A bit of death, toil, and troubles escapism, in other words, something that never will be logical (and something that fits those flimsy-Biblical supported stuff like prosperity gospel and the Rapture too, although the later is one helluv a selfish paradigm). Escapism is something that is not unique to Christianity, or even religion. BobJohnson (talk) 13:51, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
Yeah, I strongly suspect a significant overstatement of % of Fundies who read their Bible frequently, and an even lower % who actually understand it. For if nothing else, it's long, dense as hell and with a high general reading age. To use a term from literature lessons, they don't 'interact' with the text. Most might be able to quote some choice verses [mainly about culture war topics], but it's just the crap Pastors push [and quite a lot of Pastors crib off easily got materials, like pre-prepared sermons etc], not actual passages which resonated personally to them, or lessons which they found thought-provoking.
As for being a cult... yes. I actually personally describe my Fundie childhood experience as 'the cultists'. Make no mistake, the American Religious Right is a cult and should be interacted with on a socio-political basis, not a religious one. They don't really give a fig about actual theology, it's all about politics, culture and money - an unholy nexus of power and mammon which Jesus repeatedly preached against. It is partly why 'Evangelical' is becoming more synonymous with 'Trump supporting Republican' than being actually about, y'know religion. KarmaPolice (talk) 13:59, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
(EC)In any religion, the moment you start to ask, "OK, exactly how does that work?" things start to fall apart. This is not an especial problem with fundamentalist beliefs - it's a problem of all faith-based belief systems. The more you ask the questions the more threadbare you will discover the responses to be.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 14:07, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
However, non-Fundies are fairly willing to admit the stuff they can't logically prove. One chat with an solid Anglican a few years back sticks in my mind; he was firm in his belief that Heaven was real but accepted there isn't the evidence base that Heaven exists in the same way there is evidence that say, Australia exists. It can be said if nothing else, they respect the Doubting Thomas [just like the Biblical Jesus did]. KarmaPolice (talk) 18:01, 18 August 2023 (UTC)
In point of fact Heaven is a great one to ask questions about: What actually happens there? What age will people be? Will people be able to have sex? and so on. I know that each religion will have its own official take on this stuff, but individual believers usually haven't gone beyond the "It's a nice place" concept.
In my experience, these people do not go beyond what's stated in the Bible: them with God and worshipping Him forever and ever, in that eternity that is always a present. That they'll be forever and ever such way (I'm imagining things as those four seraphs that appear in Isaiah and are lauding God non-stop) and oblivious to the many people being tormented in Hell forever and ever (and I think the eternity as always present would not be felt in Hell) is never touched, besides at best asking for monies to save as much people as possible after precisely a long sermon about Hell. Panzerfaust (talk) 21:41, 18 August 2023 (UTC)

Entropy woo

First the non-woo. Watching a Veritasium video on entropy, I was particularly struck by a part about complexity and life. Complex structure is, generally all over the universe, associated with moderate levels of entropy (first increasing, then later decreasing). Life itself furthers entropy (beginning with bacteria boosting it from early on in the history of life on Earth), and life may itself have arisen as a consequence of the second law of thermodynamics. As in, in the presence of low-entropy energy such as that from the sun, given enough time life may eventually pop up as a mechanism that spreads out energy.

Now for the woo. We have content on quantum woo, but there's also entropy woo, alongside other types of physics woo. In some New Age teachings, such as the Cassiopaean, entropy is associated with evil and reptilian aliens. Supposedly, creativity is the opposite of entropy, and the channeled source is of course a bastion of creativity, along with the channeler. Spiritless humans and the un-awoken are "aligned with entropy" and further it mindlessly, while the spiritually awoken have a higher creative hyper-dimensional wisdom not further defined, except that such people are of course radiant and give something of great importance to the universe while all others are just dull energy drains. (The article doesn't cover this entropy stuff yet, but I'm thinking about it.)

Any more examples of entropy woo? If so, maybe that could become a topic of its own. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 03:10, 15 August 2023 (UTC)

Gotta say, worst I ever encountered was a kid who was drunk, i was a kod too, said to me entropy proved science wrong, told him the earth wasn't a closed system since we get energy from the sun. He came back at me with nobody knows where thunder and lightning comes from, and I unloaded, drunk. I was young and not careful, next time I saw him he was getting punched out of a bar after grabbing a girl and I think it was my fault for suggesting Nihilism to a willfull idiot. Law of Entropy as the nature of information sure holds up in a bar. 2600:8804:500:FE90:5504:A5D7:2E05:FDEA (talk) 04:19, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
Entropy arguments really annoy me. As in the "evolution can't happen because entropy" type. It's like claiming that "trees can't grow because entropy". It's so dumb it make my teeth hurt.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:42, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
Does the entropy of woo increase to a maximum as it becomes ever more inclusive? Anna Livia (talk) 23:09, 18 August 2023 (UTC)

The Metaverse

Is the Metaverse RW-missional? If so someone with more knowledge on the subject than me needs to write it up. Anna Livia (talk) 22:56, 16 August 2023 (UTC)

It could go along with writing about "Meta Platforms" the company as separate from Facebook. It's not that much to it, currently, though; just a massively hyped business idea which has been doing pretty badly, the folly of a megacorp. Now lack of people present in Meta's metaverse leads to organizations not caring much about it, and so it goes... Technology-wise, I've read that it's pretty good for gaming gear, but a bit niche and expensive to use for such. A significant minority of users get nauseous to the point they can't use it when they try (because the brain decides something is terribly wrong when fed with non-super-realistic VR, way worse than car sickness), likely a long-term obstacle to adoption. In future decades, the technology may get much better and then it may slowly creep into use as a cheap and banal portable graphics thingy update. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 23:07, 16 August 2023 (UTC)
Some More News released a pretty decent video covering the Metaverse, and they always list their sources in a Google Doc linked in the description for those curious. Carthage (talk) 23:11, 16 August 2023 (UTC)
From what I can tell (since the buzzword is so linked with Facebook, though I know the term existed before and a few other places have borrowed the term), it's basically jargon for (cough) a lame attempt at a more "corporate" Second LifeWikipedia with a VR headset, e.g. Facebook's Horizon Worlds. You know someone's been huffing too much of certain online communities when Horizon Worlds decided to support the shitshow known as NFTs for a time period. Apparently (by quick scans of Reddit thread sentiment) even if you are looking for a VR Second Life, a much better alternative exists already called VRChat.Wikipedia So, meh.
I've tried an Oculus Rift (Oculus being the VR headset company that Facebook bought out, I believe, to kickstart their metaverse project), and the "demo game" stuff was cool, but not necessary to me (even a bit gimmicky in way). I am not a huge gamer and "total immersion" is the last thing I need when playing the few games I do play. BobJohnson (talk) 00:06, 17 August 2023 (UTC)
Here's a fun video essay on the metaverse and its history as a concept, along with plenty of pointing-and-laughing at its anarcho capitalist ambitions: Video Essay MirrorIrorriM (talk) 03:47, 17 August 2023 (UTC)
As it is something regularly discussed in various places: perhaps a broader overview including Second Life, The Sims 'and anything else involving worlds sitting inside a computer' would be more mission worth. Anna Livia (talk) 13:42, 17 August 2023 (UTC)
The concept (escape reality while reality burns all around you), the content (Did they not think that the early images of playing poker with Zuckerberg or looking at Zuckerberg in a skeleton costume would be offputting to non-acolytes?), and graphics (not that great compared to video games) are ghastly. Bongolian (talk) 19:34, 17 August 2023 (UTC)
Tuvalu is thinking of somehow reconstructing itself on the Metaverse.[3] The problems of accomplishing that seem daunting, but the problems of relying on that could also be very problematic:
  • There are privacy concerns if they put citizen data there, which would probably be necessary if they're going to provide government services.
  • Meta could decide to charge Tuvalu exorbitant prices for access, or just arbitrarily remove the whole thing.
  • If the Meta version is actually recognized as a country, libertarians could take over and finally gain access to an internationally-recognized tax-free country, and evict all the Tuvaluans who can't afford to pay citizenship fees for access.
Bongolian (talk) 19:47, 17 August 2023 (UTC)

One of the 'snowpiercer type world circling ships' might be a better base for the first 'state existing within your computers' (or Bramble Bank for 364 days of the year, or Sealand-type entities) - and Tuvalu is merely exploring the idea.

I know that 'the Metaverse', massively multiplayer online games etc are 'different categories of thing' but they share common elements.Anna Livia (talk) 13:35, 18 August 2023 (UTC)

Can someone add this topic to the 'RW To Do list' please. Anna Livia (talk) 09:51, 19 August 2023 (UTC)

Self Introduction

Sup guys! I'm ULTRACOMFY, a 21y/o adolescent going through a rough phase of his life. I recently found RW and it's been a godsent. Things took a turn for the real crazy, especially since a certain pandemic broke out, and over the last few months RW helped me maintain the last bit of sanity left in me. I would generally consider myself a rational person (well, as much as a person can call themselves rational without coming off as pretentious), but the fringes and crazies on the internet were starting to erode my grasp on reality, making me start to question the very fundamentals on which our society sits on, which in turned made me open to start considering that something like a New World Order or the 9/11 attacks being an inside job may actually be a reality and that maybe we really have all been duped. This was in part because it was very specific things I was told about, but RationalWiki made me realize that fringes won't only pull into doubt the things I mentioned earlier, but effectively everything. It doesn't matter what you come across, odds are that there is someone who's gonna say that noone can be trusted and that everything as we know it is just a conspiracy designed to keep us from knowing.

RW helped me make a reuinion with the scientific method and gave me the knowledge to gain a deeper understanding for why science is superior (not that I didn't "know" that before, but they definitely got me to a point where I was doubting it - "You know.. Maybe they are right.. They could be right. How would I know."). Science isn't just ten or twenty people that noone ever gets to see that randomly come up with insights that can be easily pulled into doubt by throwing a few politically loaded words at them, it is a global, self-correcting network of tens of thousands of extremely bright people (well, mostly) doing hard, really hard SCIENCE. And they do it everywhere, they do it on governments, they did it on the attacks, and in the digital age they can't just all be bought or otherwise bent. Hundreds of thousands of people looked at the attacks, analyzing every single pixel of the recordings and checking their integrity, if there seriously was something off and the buildings or explosions didn't behave as they should then we would know.

So, what am I here for? I don't know. I guess part of it is to say thanks? Your mission is great and let me serve as an example of a person to whom this project has been very valuable, whose life has significantly improved thanks to RW. Another part of me is interested in reaching out to, and getting to know, the community behind the project that has been so important since I found it a few months ago. Hi! I am currently undergoing major changes to my life (to the better), which means that I will not be able to participate a lot on RW, even though I feel like I really want to make it a hobby of mine (my contribution list is already as small as it is). Additionally I am also not used to contributing to wikis, don't know etiquette, the processes and how things work specifically, and I am irrationally anxious about making unconstructive edits - which is why I often stick to making safer edits like correcting typos (which does improve the Wiki, but isn't exactly the scale of contribution that I would be aiming for).

So, yeah. I won't be able to contribute much (or anything, really), even though I will try (working with what limited time and knowledge I will have); but I definitely want to say hello and thanks!

ULTRACOMFY (talk) 23:29, 18 August 2023 (UTC)

Thank you for your introduction. It's not something most users do here, but it's quite welcome. Feel free to contribute to RationalWiki:How I found RationalWiki. Don't feel pressured to make major changes. If you make edits in good faith and don't edit war (repeated reversions) with people, you should be fine. Chef Moosolini already gave you a welcome message, which has links to guidance on navigating RationalWiki. Bongolian (talk) 00:10, 19 August 2023 (UTC)

PSA: Are you talking to your parents about internet scams?

Everything being digitized and sent to a cloud is not just scary for your privacy, it is scary for your mother's digital photo albums. If you have a mom/grandmother who has ever created or inherited a photo album, there is a serious chance she will see a scam email threatening to delete her cloud Photo album.

This is a scam. Any major cloud storage provider will never send a warning along with a login link. If anyone is concerned, ignore the email link and log in directly through the account provider.

It is really scary for a certain generation. After the people and pets, what is the first thing you save in a fire? For my mom's demographic and generation, the answer is 'the photo albums' 2600:8804:500:FE90:5504:A5D7:2E05:FDEA (talk) 03:44, 15 August 2023 (UTC)

On this topic. I'm curious as to the extent to which rationalwikians feel scams fall under our purview? They may not be outright pseudoscience or authoritarianism but certainly make for some good case studies in how people can have their rational brain over-ridden... which would seem to be somewhat relevant... Tikitime2 (talk) 09:21, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
Scams fall under deceit and have long been covered by RW. Chillpilled (talk) 16:33, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
I would not have a problem with "scams" being included. It's kinda tangential - but I wouldn't object. (We might also want to be careful about over-generalizing in respect of certain age groups)Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:15, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
Damn, I searched for it but couldn't find it until you linked it. Something that explored maybe more the psychology of how scams work might be helpful. Don't personally have time to write it atm though. Tikitime2 (talk) 17:20, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
Is it that tangential? Regular scams are very similar to the worst of old school quackery. I could compare it to coverage of logical fallacies and anti-intellectualism too. Chillpilled (talk) 20:44, 15 August 2023 (UTC)
As I said, I would have no problem with them being included.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 14:29, 16 August 2023 (UTC)
Crankery, Woo, and other things covered here often go hand-in-hand with scamming. Oftentimes, it's the main motivation behind pushing these things.-Ryan1257 (talk) 05:08, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
Grift magnetism. As soon as a scammer promotes their crankery enough to get attention, other scammers rush in to try to steal the mark for their own scam.Antigem (talk)

Take My Test

Take my test that tests how smart you are!!! No, not really. It's funny. This is the test. The Krusty Krab (talk) 17:12, 19 August 2023 (UTC)

I got bored with it after question 15. I've never heard of John Cena, I've never watched SpongeBob Square Pants, I'm not interested in Diary of a Wimpy Kid or whatever it was mashed up with. I guess I'm not the target demographic. Spud (talk) 03:35, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
You got substantially further than I did.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 06:37, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
I must be younger than you both. I've heard of Cena, grew up on Spongebob, read Wimpy Kid in school. Still not taking this test. Pop tests like that are privacy blackholes. Carthage (talk) 16:32, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
I find it difficult to believe that anyone could get much (or indeed any) information about an individual from looking at the results of that test. You could certainly get a lot more by looking at their RW contributions.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 18:11, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
That's in addition to the aforementioned privacy issues. Carthage (talk) 18:15, 20 August 2023 (UTC)

People so stupid that they cannot get their ethnic slurs right

I am certain that there are people out there that cannot even get their ethnic slurs and stereotypes right. What do you think? --Trans Fem Agenda 16:25, 20 August 2023 (UTC)

Duh. Islamophobic dipshits attacking Sikhs for looking vaguely like a popular culture stereotype of a Muslim in a turban, for instance. In fact, very soon after 9/11 such Islamophobic terror attacks were being committed against Sikhs... Carthage (talk) 16:30, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
There's a reason you can sue (in the US) for discrimination based on the perception of belonging to a group you actually don't. Chillpilled (talk) 17:36, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
I had a co-worker who was Fijian and would received the slur “paki” as an insult, which is short for Pakistani. As a child she didn’t understand that people were insulting her for simply being brown, so she would naively correct them which she finds funny as an adult. “Actually, I am Fijian”. Turns out it is just a general catch all slur for anyone who looks to be southeast asian, but I still find it profoundly dumb. Especially considering the conflict between Pakistan and India, and Fiji not even being in the same continent that a short hand for Pakistanis is just used as a slur for anyone who looks brown. Its almost a boastful kind of ignorance, indistinguishable from a proud stupidity . - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 20:36, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
There is such a thing as Fiji Hindi, so maybe people just assumed she was one of them... no, that's probably giving them too much credit. What a bunch of uncultured rubes. That said, I generally find ethnic profanity doesn't land the same way as a true fucking swear word; given my family background, I can't say I'd care all that much if someone called me a paddy, a frog, or a kraut. Hell, I've been called a buckra in the USVI and, since I'll be visiting the subcontinent, people can call me a gora with the most offensive intent possible for all I care. At work I've been called a roundeye and told to fuck my cracker ass with a knife, at a certain point it gets hard to take it all that seriously. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:00, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
I would apply Bonhoeffer's Theory of Stupidity to such people. Many of them know the difference, they just don't care.UncleKrampus (talk) 14:27, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
Many do not want to give up their ignorant prejudice. Racists hate things like education; that is probably why public education is under attack. --Trans Fem Agenda 22:26, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
Bad news: the general public hates education. They never liked it much and tend to believe it is only good for children and young people. UncleKrampus (talk) 00:36, 22 August 2023 (UTC)

The perfect description of the natural health industry


Got to love Roger Horton. --Trans Fem Agenda 22:24, 21 August 2023 (UTC)

...I miss classic Cracked.com CorruptUser 04:42, 22 August 2023 (UTC)

Who is better, Elon Musk or Donald Trump?

Both men are quite arrogant and have many who hate them. And are both reckless. Still who is better? — Unsigned, by: Riptwitter‎ / talk / contribs

On talk pages, please sign your comments using four tildes (~~~~) or by clicking on the sign button: SigButt.png on the toolbar above the edit panel. You can also indent successive talk page comments using one more colon (:) for each line. Thank you. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 00:47, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
I read an article comparing the two, as distinct types of narcissists, using an analogy. "Emotion is heat. Trump senses it and preys on it. Trump is a pit viper. Elon Musk, on the other hand, is almost the exact opposite. ... He eats everything in front of him. As he does, he gets bigger and bigger… and so does his appetite. Musk is a python." The author further has the idea that Musk has taken on Twitter much like a python can sometimes eat a porcupine and end up... spiky. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 03:39, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
Elon Musk is a symbol of the decline of the Silicon Valley tech scene, Donald Trump is a symbol of the decline of the GOP. "Better" or "worse" is relative, because both are part of negatives in both scenes that were always there. But Trump's populism affected the political discourse of an entire country (one that while also in its own decline is still quite a major player in the world), and served as an influence towards other autocrats elsewhere. So as far as negative influence, there's not much question in my mind that Trump ended up being worse. BobJohnson (talk) 12:44, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
While "better" and " worse" are both relative personal terms, I think the question "Who is worse?" is really a better question. But then "worse at or for for what?" President? Boss? Moral example? Businessman?
For me: Worse at President - Trump. Worse as boss - a tie. Worse moral example - difficult, but probably Trump. Worse businessman - Trump.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 13:37, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
Has EM incited an equivalent to the Capitol Riots and other egregious damage?
Lyndon B Johnson, Richard Nixon and Donald Trump - compare and contrast. Anna Livia (talk) 14:00, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
They're interchangeable assholes of unusual size. Musk is better simply because he's a Boer born in South Africa, and can't become president of any country unless he buys one. Bongolian (talk) 18:58, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
You mean who is more awful - "better" has far to much positive ring to it, as does "less awful", even when being used to compare shades of posterior orifice. Aloysius the Gaul (talk) 20:45, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
I would have said Musk, as a businessman, until the idiot bought Twitter.Zatoichi (talk) 21:08, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
The way I understand it, Musk is a businessman who grew up in a very sheltered environment. His perspective is limited and apparently nobody told him the rules for rich people: Keep a low profile. So, while he may use his platforms, power and money to force upon humanity his incredibly stupid takes, his end goal is money. Transportation, health care, Mars, with Musk it's all possible, if you have money - in cash, please. A perfect example of a baby that was given Twitter instead of toy cars to play with.
Trump, however, is different. Trump is a grown man, but a grown man who is fighting the liberal conspiracy that undermines the world, the government, scientists, even just normal civilians - everyone's controlled and all is rigged against god-fearing, freedom drinking Americans. The liberals are out to destroy everything that made our nation great, they are out to spin and confuse your mind, questioning every bit of reality, anything a good republican has learned, like heterosexuality, patriarchy, THE BIBLE (!), it's all under attack by an evil liberal (or for some, Jewish) force that is trying to destroy the world. Trump is set on protecting the American people, set on protecting our values, he doesn't focus on money (he does, but nowhere like Musk), he is here to force his shitty moral code on innocent people. He goes out of his way, campaigning and bribing and lying his way all to American presidency so he can do what essentially amounts to nothing more than hurting and harming people for "ideological" reasons. And even if we grant him a few brain cells and say that he really just wants to be president for personal enrichment (which I think would be a valid argument), then the Jan 6 attacks are pretty good proof to me that, if he does NOT believe or act on it, the people he wants to vote for him certainly do.
Under this precedent I find that the question about "who is worse?" is an easy one to answer. Musk may have control over the platform on which a lot of politics happens, but noone uses it as much for harm as Trump does, even if Musk owns that platform. ULTRACOMFY (talk) 21:32, 21 August 2023 (UTC)
Nah. The 'self-made man who worships his creator' is a trope older than steam [first documented in the early 18th France, with the 'nouveau riche' insult]. They would [and perhaps did] retort to the 'keep a low profile' advice with 'if I had, I'd have never got where I am today!'. Founders are often 'larger than life' because their own egotism drives them and there's often a touch of the grifter about them - not that they're all looking to outrightly con you, but they will constantly be sniffing for opportunity and to play 'sharp with the rules'. A good historical example here being some of the American 'Robber Barons' of the Gilded Age.
I think the best way to 'compare' Trump and Musk is a little thought experiment. Imagine they are two AI 'leaders' in that game Civilization - in this way, we can strip out age and their exploits to date. How would the two characters be different? My argument is that while they'd do a lot the same [grifting, egotism, greed] Musk would channel some of that wealth into building 'constructive' items while all Trump would do is throw up shoddy towers. This means that ultimately Musk would leave a better 'legacy' to future generations than Trump ever could. KarmaPolice (talk) 09:13, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
Asking which one is better is like asking if Rabies, Necrotizing Fasciitis, Bubonic Plague or Stomach Cancer is better. All are awful and nobody would want them. --Trans Fem Agenda 23:07, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
This is why I use the term 'less worse' for questions like this. There are questions which all the options are bad, but you cannot say they are equally bad. KarmaPolice (talk) 10:00, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

Found this.

This is Kanye East. NOT to be confused with Kanye West. "He’s like Kanye West but better. And he makes better music. And he doesn’t like Hitler." -some guy on Genius.com The Krusty Krab (talk) 22:31, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

This is an interesting scientific curiosity


Fungi apparently have over 20,000 gender variations. At least fungi don't deal with pronouns like humans. Transgender fungi. --Trans Fem Agenda 22:43, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

There's a distinction between sex, a biological construct, and gender: a psychosocial construct. Fungi don't have gender, they have sexes. Carthage (talk) 23:09, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Also, not all languages have gendered pronouns. Bongolian (talk) 23:47, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
My favorite creature with a bizarre reproductive process has always been the Siphonophorae. They are colony organisms whose members all have independent brains but are tethered into a single neural column which can override the wills of individuals within the collective, even forcing them to take suicidal actions (such as sacrificing themselves to save the colony from an attacking squid). The species essentially has a "sex" for any sub-organism it wants to manifest: "arm", "mouth", "digestive tract", etc. The members share resources, most of them being unable to feed themselves or requiring multiple individuals to process a single piece of food. While they can only survive by carefully coordinating with each other, they all reproduce asexually without a "queen" or some other director deciding the next member's function. It is my favorite example of a creature which is just a mind-fuck by its very existence. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 00:29, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

How to quit sex

Is No Fap worth it? I want to quit sex but am really struggling with sexual thoughts all the time. How do you do it? TheFrench (talk) 08:48, 22 August 2023 (UTC)

No Fap is about giving up wanking, not giving up sex. And there's nothing wrong with wanking. You do realise that we are mostly a bunch of atheists who don't think there's anything sinful about sex, don't you? Spud (talk) 11:08, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
I am a slave to sexual desire. I want to be free from the urge to fuck. What does it takes? TheFrench (talk) 11:36, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
If it's really making you unhappy, you need counselling from a professional. Unqualified strangers on the internet can't give you the help you're looking for. Spud (talk) 12:51, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
The "solution" is, um, in "your own hands". But I certainly agree with Spud - it seems you might need professional advice. So asking professionals for advice might be wise.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 13:16, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
(EC)I never completely gave up on porn, even after I got married, but I had a severe problem of porn and masturbation compulsion during my early to mid 20s, so much than I had to use viagra at 25 before penetrative sex in order to get erections (I could only get hard with lesbian sex and titfucks because that was the only kind of porn I like), so I can relate to this topic. No matter how bad is your situation, mine was worse, I almost had RSI on my left wrist. I used to masturbate 5 to 7 times a day (sometimes more), so it can be a problem. Some things that helped me: 1 delete all the porn on your computer in case you download stuff (I used to have more than 2TB of porn on my computer). 2 Block all the porn sites. There are extentions, like Blocksite, that can do this for you. 3 Find out what is the "trigger" that makes you masturbate and get a substitute. For me, it was boredom. When I fell the urge to see porn, I just pick a book and get out of the computer. I know our article NoFap#Porn addiction says it is bullshit and it probably is, but that's my personal case, that's the way I've been dealing with it and it's been working for me for some years. GeeJayKWhere all evil dwells Where every lie is true 13:18, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
The problem with the word "addiction" is that colloquially it represents two somewhat different physiological things -- substance abuse and compulsive disorders -- that may require different treatments. Pornography "addiction" isn't complete "bullshit" at all but such, if a problem, is also a compulsive disorder, not a substance abuse addiction. It's similar to an "addiction" to gambling or many other compulsive "addictions" out there.
Pornography attracts the ire of puritanical culture / fundies because oh noes sex, and that's one of the issues with NoFap; much of it has been hijacked from people who are anti-pornography *period*, and this group tends to overstate what "porn addiction" is. What GeeJayK described does sound like an actual legitimate compulsive issue, but from what I can tell, much of the NoFap crowd treats even standard porn viewing as if it were some horrible drug. In many cases, it's almost obsessive-compulsive from the other angle, where one is obsessed with purity and the mere act of masturbating is a sin. So you will *never* get a great diagnosis from this crowd.
The other issue with NoFap is that it also has been hijacked by the machismo / manosphere crowd, and there's a lot of strange nonsense regarding how you will become Muscle Manly Man Chad if you don't masturbate, with cherry-picked citations of studies they don't understand and weird talk about testosterone and whatnot. This part is pretty much bullshit all the way around and can be safely ignored.
So I agree with the advice that if you are worried about it, sure, check with a professional (or even "self-modify" behavior if possible). NoFap won't be of much help IMHO. (Edit) I'll add that this advice also applies if your possible problem is less "compulsive porn" and more "compulsive hypersexuality", since it's not clear from your posts which one it is. NoFap will help even less with compulsive hypersexuality (since it is porn focused), but a professional might give some good advice for both. BobJohnson (talk) 14:01, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
Yeah, that's why I said "porn compulsion" and not "addiction". I also agree with Spud about getting counselling from a professional, but until then, TheFrench can already try some things to get rid of his problem, hence my suggestions. Another thing that worked from me, especially in the beginning was having a "cheat dayWiktionary" every ten days where I could see porn only once. GeeJayKWhere all evil dwells Where every lie is true 15:25, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
I can advise that old age reduces the desire for sex quite a lot!! Not entirely you understand, but it's not quite the "must have always" that it once was :) Aloysius the Gaul (talk) 20:53, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
Good post! (I'm 79) Scream!! (talk) 22:22, 22 August 2023 (UTC)
At 65, can confirm. It just ain't a priority. (Never really was in my case, but even less of one these days.) Kencolt (talk) 00:32, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

Antidepressants seemingly killed my sex drive, which is a reported side effect of various SNRI's and/or SSRI's. Not a really advisable recommendation, but I wonder if antidepressants have been studied under the context of reducing sexual compulsion. The side effects may not be reliable or frequent enough in medicated samples to actually be an effective tool in that regard, but who knows. I am going to look into it and update this thread. Reminder I am not actually providing medical advice here, I am not qualified to do that. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 04:10, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

Look the reason why I don't like therapists is because: I am too ashamed of my sexual desires, I don't think they will help me get rid of it and they cost quite a load of money. @OnlySortaDumb Thank you for the suggestion. And desires of the flesh, I consider to be morally wrong. I have come to realise that I am not the good person I think I was. I want to change that. TheFrench (talk) 09:04, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
What else is there to say, suspicious new account? You cannot naturally 'get rid' of your libido; it's simply part of the human condition. 'NoFap' cannot work here because it basically is you denying you have a libido [though may help a bit if you're dealing with a compulsive/impulse control issue]. If you want to really to get rid of it, my observations tell me the following might work...
- Alcoholism. The classic 'brewers droop' is a thing.
- Obesity. Nothing like carrying around a keg of lard to knock back pesky desires. We're talking over 180kg here, so get eating!
- Opiates. I've never heard of a heroin addict wanting sex. Perhaps you could find a doctor who'll give you a bucket of OxyContin or Vicodin on eternal repeat?
- Castration. Your libido is hormonal in nature. Thus, remove those hormones.
KarmaPolice (talk) 10:21, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I really would not want to get castrated. TheFrench (talk) 10:41, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
None of the 'solutions' are a good idea. That's the whole point. Every male mammal after the onset of puberty has a libido. If you think that is somehow 'wrong', well that's more an issue in your own head than anything else - which goes back to the first suggestion ['seek professional help'] in which part of this would be discovering who fed you this stupid idea and accepting it is really stupid and should be ignored. KarmaPolice (talk) 10:49, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I don't like it. That's why. If I don't control it soon, it will destroy me. Its an addiction. TheFrench (talk) 11:22, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
So what kind of an answer are you looking for? Apart from "consult a professional" (which you don't want to do) - what is it you expect from this conversation?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 11:34, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Why the fuck is your username "TheFrench"? Don't you know that the French are known to be promiscuous as fuck? Next time pick a better username, like "PleaseCockBlockMe" MayGodSaveUsAll (talk) 11:59, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
This is why 'denial' programmes don't really work. You cannot learn to manage a biological urge if the starting point is 'it is wrong and must be suppressed at all costs'. KarmaPolice (talk) 12:04, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

(reset) Try writing fiction - see the various fanfic sites. (Bear in mind much fanfic is written by women for women; and check 'tags'/beware of 'dead dove' fiction.) Anna Livia (talk) 13:53, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

“desires of the flesh” make me think of Rocky Horror. OP should watch Rocky Horror and report back their review. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:14, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

Pedantic point: op said no fap, but i think you meant abstinence. we have an article on the ideas and motivations behind it with a deep dive into the pseudoscientific justifications thereof. at the end of the day though, abstinence isn't a bad thing in and of itself, and it's your choice, really. The G (talk) 04:38, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

Pedantic counter-point; OP was asking about it because [I believe] they are full of self-loathing due to the possession of a libido. Thus, 'abstinence' is not a solution because a libido isn't something you can ignore and it 'goes away'. KarmaPolice (talk) 09:11, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
Why does OP think that their libido will "destroy" them? How bad it is? There is nothing 'inherently' wrong about having libido and acting on it, it's when the rest of your life suffers from it that it gets problematic. And by "suffer" I don't mean "issues made up in your (or someone elses) head", I mean not going to work, not socializing, not taking care of yourself, that kind of stuff. If you find having a libido 'at all' is a bad thing then you are being irrational - and that's fine, but you should definitely address it. If you are in fear of "being destroyed" then you need professional support. In case of crisis you can always resort to calling your national emergency line. ULTRACOMFY (talk) 14:29, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

The ping pong of sexual orientation

Is it normal to have your sexual orientation seemingly flip on a dime? Does bisexual mean you like both men and women at the same time? What does it mean if you only like one at a time or none for a while? Most of the day I would describe myself as "anti-horny" (don't know how else to say it) where I absolutely detest any depiction of sexuality (games, movies, commercials, how people dress around me, etc). I think this is mostly because I was raised in a strict southern baptist household and that just never really leaves you, but maybe I'm sporadically a-romantic / a-sexual? MirrorIrorriM (talk) 15:23, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

I think most people's sexual desires ebb and flow: they're "in the mood" some proportion of time, and "out of the mood" another proportion of time, with a gradient between them. The exact distribution varies from person to person. Some people's "ebb" is vastly more prominent than the "flow", and that's completely valid. Preferring one type of sexual partner sometimes, and preferring a different type at others is perfectly reasonable. There's no arbitrary Bisexuality Law that demands you be aroused by both men and women at all times, in all instances. As for whether you should identify yourself as aromantic and/or asexual, that's for you to explore and ultimately decide. Again, there's no hard and fast Aro/Ace Identification Law that makes unconditional disinterest and avoidance of romance or sex a requisite to claim the identity. (talk) 15:37, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Normal in a statistical sense? No, probably not. People are programed by culture and biology to be one way or the other. But, humans are also capable of infinite variation and that is also normal. You don't need to identify yourself as anything. One simply needs to understand oneself in time to live in the world.Ariel31459 (talk) 16:26, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I've recently read a definition of bisexuality that I found very compelling:
I call myself bisexual because I acknowledge that I have in myself the potential to be attracted – romantically and/or sexually – to people of more than one gender, not necessarily at the same time, not necessarily in the same way, and not necessarily to the same degree.
Because I'm kinda struggling with bisexuality myself (still extremely closeted), this is really reassuring. I agree with Ariel in the fact that human behaviour (especially sexuality/gender) is way too complex to be always perfectly labeled. But I think that labels can help you to find people with similar experiences to yours and communicate with them. And even though bisexuals are quite rare, there are probably more than for example redheads (: IluzasipalStone them! 21:54, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
The idea that anyones sexuality is “programmed” is straight up unsupported by the existing evidence. There is no “gene” or a pre-determined morphological phenotype for sexual orientation as well as no real means to culturally condition or “convert” someone into a particular sexuality. At best you have correlations with hormone exposure in pre-natal development, and vastly differing attitudes, beliefs, and practices, towards sex, gender, and sexuality across various cultures and time periods. Science doesn’t know why people vary in this regard, but in all likelihood it doesn’t boil down to a singular determined cause nor is it necessarily fixed across a person’s lifetime. Hormone replacement therapy and other endocrinological factors have been reported to change a person’s sexuality, but for many people it does not have that effect. It is also not something strictly speaking only observed in human beings. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:29, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
More to the point, I have identified myself as bisexual since I was about 16. Now however I find myself more inclined to refer to myself as queer. It was entirely normal for me to feel that I would flow between “gay moods” and “straight moods” with periods of time where I was more predominantly attracted to women, and other periods where I been predominantly attracted to men. I never really felt any specific attraction to individuals who would identify themselves as non-binary, but I also don’t see any reason why a enby couldn’t be someone I was potentially sexually or romantically attracted to. I never met anyone who identifies as bisexual who has a perfectly equal sexual attraction to men and women (or any other genders one would want to include) simultaneously. The idea that bisexuality entails that is widely considered a myth within the bisexual community. Terms like this are often ways human beings like to put people into boxes, identify how you wish; there isn’t any clear rules here. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:35, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I think what's most important is not the words you use to describe yourself, but the feelings you have about yourself and your surrounding. What matters is that you find sexual/romantic gratification, as long as you have that it doesn't matter what words the other person uses to describe themselves or you. (Unless it's a murderer. Or a serial criminal - except when you are a criminal, in that case go ahead. Anything, really, that would be likely to significantly affect your relationship or your wellbeing right now or in the future.) I for one am pretty sure that I am hetero, but if I find myself kissing a dude sometime then I'm not gonna regret it. Am I bisexual now? Maybe? I don't give a fucking damn though. ULTRACOMFY (talk) 14:34, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

Spud's 50th birthday

It's my 50th birthday on 29th August 2023. To mark the occasion, I'm gong to get absolutely fucking ratarsed. So if you want an excuse to get absolutely fucking ratarsed next Tuesday as well, now you've got one. Spud (talk) 04:01, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

Honestly thought you were misspelling a certain slur before realizing you were writing rat-arsed. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 04:12, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I never knew it had to be hyphenated. Yes, rat-arsed is what I meant. Spud (talk) 08:03, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I'll have a few in your honour young man.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 10:10, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
@Spud Happy 50th birthday to you! Ψ (talk) 13:27, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I dunno. Somehow your being officially fifteen years younger than me doesn't seem like a valid excuse. Not if I want to keep my own liver much longer, anyhow... Kencolt (talk) 18:56, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
@Spud Cong-rats! IluzasipalStone them! 22:16, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
@Spud Congrats on becoming half a century old. It's also kinda funny to see someone around the same age as my parents contributing to a wiki dedicated to debunking the bovine-feces most people (including my father who espouses transphobia, neo-confederate dogwhistles, and pro-trump views, but excluding my mother who is very apolitical) their age buy into. LeGrandePumbloom An Eldritch Abomination from the 21st Dimension 23:10, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
So here is what I thought was an interesting take on older people's views which I came across recently. It is often suggested that people move "to the right" as they get older. They often seem to have extreme opinions about race, sexuality or society. But is this a function of getting older?
Or is it simply that the overton window has moved to the left while their opinions have remained unchanged? In this view society has changed and left them behind. Personally I am now kind of old, and I'm really happy that I am no longer the sexist, racist homophobe I would have been if my opinions had not changed over time. But it's very easy to imagine the really horrible person I could have been.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 12:46, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
The people that I know that actually became MAGA (and they're all my age, late 40s, or older) didn't change much. In a couple cases, they were already not the brightest bulbs and heavy into the conspiracy shit. There's so enough in real life of these folks around that fictional archetypes have been made of them (think Dale Gribble from King of the Hill), but the conspiracy crowd really wasn't as tilted to the right-wing until the last several years; now it is.
The others I know that became MAGA were, at best, "closed off" and frankly quite uncomfortable in any social paradigm that wasn't their version of the WASP experience. At worst, they already were pretty racist, and actually were the type that was really upset when black guy became president, because black guy.
The "overton shift" has largely been a result of America becoming more multicultural and somewhat more tolerant on things like homosexuality. Society changes, some people don't. I am wondering if additional shifts are on the horizon. There's a lot of economic malaise among the youth (especially on things that are known to be quite shitty, like US healthcare), and climate change is something you can't ignore as much as the Reagan 1980s thinktanks did. We'll see. BobJohnson (talk) 13:35, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
OK. Thanks for that localized US-centric perspective.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 14:29, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
You got to assume anyone talking about "neo-confederate dogwhistles" and "pro-trump" is talking from an American perspective. (Though I think I've heard a few WTF reports of racist groups elsewhere flying the 28th Virginia Battle Flag, because this lot isn't terribly intelligent and consistent.) BobJohnson (talk) 14:46, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
I am indeed speaking from a U.S point of view, specifically from the U.S Deep South, a known neo-confederate hotbed. LeGrandePumbloom An Eldritch Abomination from the 21st Dimension 23:03, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
The 28th Virginia Battle Flag is widely used by hate groups abroad as a substitute for the Nazi flag in jurisdictions where the latter is banned. Plutocow (talk) 00:35, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

Anybody watch the first Republican debate?

To be fully fair, they are all a bunch of losers who have no chances again Trump, so its pretty understandable if you didn't watch it. Ψ (talk) 14:08, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

i feel a certain hubris watching Pence turn his back on the guy he was VP for. not that I support Pence in any way, but it is a wonderful thing to see the Trump empire finally collapse in his face and for everyone who once had his back to leave him in the dust. Jake Holmesyell at me 14:14, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
I'm not interested in driving my brain cells to suicide by listening to moronic bigoted drivel. (Then again, bigotry is moronic by definition,[Rdc 1] so that's not much of a superlative.) Luigifan18 (talk) 17:22, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
Burgum didn't really stand out, though it is funny to contrast his position on abortion bans with his record. (The ghost of Stephen Douglass would be proud.) Hutchinson clearly wants to break with Trump but there isn't enough substance to him beyond that. If Scott wanted to be above the fray all he did was make himself look like an empty suit. Pence still wants a gold medal for basic human decency. Christie is less like a candidate for president and more like a has-been insult comic-it's like he's running to have the most viral moments on what's left of liberal twitter. A lot of eyes were on DeSantis but he was just...there. The most memorable aspect of his performance is that he appears to have had microphone issues. A lot of centrist media outlets will probably claim Haley was the winner but she clearly doesn't know what party she's in.
It's surprising to see how much of it revolved around Ramaswamy. He got the sort of pressure normally saved for frontrunners. He's mastered the Trump style-at times he came off as a homunculus made so Trump could be in two places at once. He'll probably get a lot of mockery in the press but he is the only one who seems to remember he's running in the 2020s GOP.-Flandres (talk) 18:11, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
Ramaswamy was definitely the others' target, much more than DeSantis, and he broke from the other candidates on several issues, including Ukraine and climate. DeSantis didn't really stand out; being next to Ramaswamy kind of emphasized his lack of charisma, and he sounded stilted and over-rehearsed (he kept repeating the same line about the decline of America). He also kept dodging the questions in a really obvious way, even the moderators called him out for it. Pence was surprisingly aggressive, and his and Haley's attacks on Ramaswamy were sharper than Christie's. Overall, I'd say Pence, Haley, and Ramaswamy performed the best. Christie did not live up to his reputation for debate, DeSantis really was just sort of there, Hutchinson was forgettable, and Scott and Burgum didn't really do anything to break from the crowd. Burgum would like you to know that he's from a small town. I'm most curious to see what happens to Ramaswamy's numbers; the other campaigns seem to perceive him as the likely threat, and I don't understand what the Republican base wants enough to know whether they'll prefer his stances. He's now my least-preferred Republican candidate. Haley was the most focused on the general election, and I'm dubious whether that will be well-received by the primary voters. The UFO question was bizarre, the 1 minute time limit was too short, and the moderators didn't do a good job enforcing it or ensuring that the candidates got approximately the same amount of time to speak. 𝒮𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓃𝑒 talk 20:00, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
Welp, I'm going to try to vote for either Haley or Christie if they are still in the running when the primaries come to my state. Yeah yeah, Christie is the asshole who f'ked with the commute, but in the grand scheme of things, if the worst we can find on the guy is that he's a petty narcissistic asshole who shouldn't be allowed in a position of power, well, that's the best endorsement any politician can have these days. CorruptUser 20:09, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
I didn't watch the debate but the impression I've had so far of Ramaswamy is that he's the Andrew Yang of this campaign cycle. Sort of. While they both have that "I am entrepreneur" vibe going for them, Yang at least had a central position (universal income) that was a novel idea to campaign on. In contrast, Ramaswamy has... woke obsessions. At least, that's all I have heard so far. Has Ramaswamy moved off that obsession yet? Because no one cares about that. It isn't working for DeSantis (and some commentary I've heard about the debate mentioned DeSantis actually shied away from using the "woke" word) and it won't work for Ramaswamy as well. Maybe those alt-right bigot types that oddly fell into Yang's orbit in 2020 will like it (and shout loudly about it), but who else? BobJohnson (talk) 20:43, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
I'd argue Ramaswamy is more relevant to the GOP than Yang was to the dems. Yang was closer to democrats than republicans ideologically, but his platform had a lot of quirks, so he never really fit in. By contrast being obsessed with halting social justice causes-whether you use "woke" or "SJW" "political correctness gone mad" or whatever term-has to be at least 40% of what animates the republican party right now. Like Trump, Ramaswamy is a republican Monster from the Id.-Flandres (talk) 20:51, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
@BobJohnson In the debate, Ramaswamy memorably advocated ending aid to Ukraine (presenting this as an either/or with securing the border) and was the only candidate to firmly deny the reality of climate change (calling it a hoax and claiming that more damage is done by climate policy). He also called Trump the greatest president of the century to date. So he has a few (coarse-grained) planks in his platform. 𝒮𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓃𝑒 talk 21:00, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
Hmm. The problem I see with riding this particular rail of politics is... well, I just can't see the evangelical Christian and white nationalism "id" vote fully embracing someone who is a son of Indian immigrants (oh noes melanin in skin!) and is Hindu, even if he (hypocritically) makes the "right noises". Especially if (as a few articles seem to indicate)[4][5] his Hinduism might be of the Narendra Modi Hindu nationalism type. Horseshoe theory only goes so far with the id voter lot, methinks. Obviously many outside the "Trump's biggest fan" club (conservatives included) won't give a hoot about skin color, nationality, or religion, but it's still "Trump's party" at the moment, and I'm guessing this lot would rather vote for a Trump in a jail cell than a Ramaswamy. (Though maybe Ramaswamy's vying for a VP slot in the quite likely chance that his campaign fails, in which case what he is doing makes a little sense.) BobJohnson (talk) 23:01, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
I'd agree that he isn't running to win. He's done great at building a certain image, but he never is interested in differentiating himself from the frontrunner he allegedly wants to unseat, and he almost never even implicitly criticizes Trump. He probably just wants a bigger national media profile as a red-blooded conservative before he does something else.-Flandres (talk) 00:18, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

Republican debate commentary

  1. At best, bigotry is merely an evolutionary holdover from a time when one's survival frequently came at the expense of one's neighbor. As I've said before, it's kind of hard to "love thy neighbor" when you can't trust your neighbor not to slit your throat the moment an opportunity to do so cleanly and to make a profit by doing so presents itself, but in civilized societies, people have morals that prevent them from doing that (those who don't tend to get ostracized and/or locked up (and that's in societies that frown upon lynching)), so… basically, yeah, bigotry is essentially a toxic combination of ignorance and paranoia that can be most effectively fought through education of the young to prevent it from forming (and I mean proper education, not homeschooling by bigots for bigots). (As for those who have already had their minds poisoned by bigotry and won't change their awful opinions… well… they're little better than rabid dogs.) Luigifan18 (talk) 17:22, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

Prigozhin poll

Congrats to the six people who got the answer right! Plutocow (talk) 18:46, 23 August 2023 (UTC)

This might still weaken Putin's regime either way. Carthage (talk) 19:03, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Gotta admit, I kinda thought he was gonna get away with it into next year. Rest in piss, Priggy! Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 19:11, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Either way, the reason this still represents a weakening of Putin's regime is because one can oppose Putin without being immediately blown up as long as they hold assets valuable to Putin hostage. Carthage (talk) 19:14, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Yeah he did way more than oppose Putin. He killed Russian soldiers and blew up helicopters. And he got away with it for ages. How humiliating for Putin. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 19:17, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
It is sort of odd that you can get sent to jail for voicing criticism but if you organize a mutiny you can (temporally) get away with it. Still, it worked for Trump.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:23, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Not really. The jailed people are 'Western-style' dissidents of which Putin et al have nothing but scorn for. People like Prigozhin are 'like him' in the respect they're evil-minded, violent fuckers who'll do anything for their own ends. One thing which I admit surprises me is why the hell Prigozhin thought he'd be 'safe' travelling within Russia. KarmaPolice (talk) 19:33, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Assuming Prigozhin didn't fake his death, it probably creates a power vacuum for Wagner: no clear successor, mercenaries spread out in multiple countries. The mercenaries outside Russia probably have even fewer options for travel at this point. Bongolian (talk) 19:47, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
I don't understand. Why the fuck did he return to Russia knowing they are not welcomed here and especially that Russia's intelligence services were more than likely tracking him?. Panzerfaust (talk) 20:47, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
In some Wagner-affiliated Telegram channels they are threatening another march on Moscow if he is really dead. Some others claim he is actually alive, though I find this very unlikely. Chillpilled (talk) 21:19, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Lots of rumours, lots of "name doubles" travelling on his name. And pictures that pretty clearly show a missile strike on the plane. All part of the siloviki "court politics" that is the tradition in Russia since forever. Aloysius the Gaul (talk) 21:24, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Please, God, I hope Wagner marches on Moscow again, that would be the funniest thing ever. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 22:36, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
Please let him be a corpse. After committing crimes against humanity, he deserves it. --Trans Fem Agenda 23:05, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
One Wagner channel says he is in fact dead: https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/russian-mercenary-chief-prigozhin-dead-channel-affiliated-with-wagner-says-2023-08-23/ Chillpilled (talk) 23:39, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
He was Putin's butcher, now he's just a Burnt Weeny Sandwich.Wikipedia Bongolian (talk) 23:45, 23 August 2023 (UTC)
#RipBozo #Packwatch 👎😹👎 Moon Sock (talk) 21:51, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
This is probably Putin's most expensive assassination. An entire plane which costs at least $5 million got blown up just for this shit. [6] [7]. Why can't Putin just make some tea or push them off of a building? Those are much cheaper alternatives. MayGodSaveUsAll (talk) 15:18, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

And the new BRICS members are...

Four reactionary dictatorships (Saudi Arabia, Iran, Egypt and UAE) and two countries with failed economies (Argentina and Ethiopia).[8] . Assuming the BRICS would be a bloc to counter the west, this was a bad move IMO, especially considering how the Chinese economy is at its worst in over 40 years. GeeJayKWhere all evil dwells Where every lie is true 20:15, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

I love that they tossed Iran in alongside three countries that absolutely hate it. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 19:26, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

I made a game.

I made this in 20 minutes please tell me if it's good this is the game. Yes. Really. The Krusty Krab (talk) 17:59, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

Kinda got the impression that I don't want to press that "download" button IluzasipalStone them! 18:58, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
It's not a virus. It's a game. The Krusty Krab (talk) 18:59, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
It's a ScratchWikipedia game. Since the DL is an SB3 file, it won't work unless you go to the Scratch website, create an account, load the editor, create a new project, and load the file. There's nothing wrong with the contents that I see (SB3 files are just ZIP files that have the game resources (graphics and sounds etc) and a JSON with the game code).
I would advise The Krusty Krab to, if possible, share the project instead, it makes things easier. The only caveat is if you don't want to put this project in a public share (which save a kinda hackey workaround doesn't look possible at this time, sigh.) BobJohnson (talk) 22:47, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
You don't need an account to open SB3 files.The Krusty Krab (talk) 23:18, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

Wagner Group fighter upset by Russia bulldozing cemeteries filled with slain Wagner mercs


I don't know why he's surprised by this. Wagner is nothing more than cannon fodder and is arguably less than that now because of Prigozhin's stupid stunt last month. Carthage (talk) 06:40, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

There have been multiple reports of criminal ex-Wagner recruits who were pardoned and released back to Russia, who have subsequently been committing serious crimes.[9] That might be reason enough to renege on the pardon promise. Bongolian (talk) 07:30, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
What did they think? That psychopaths wouldn't act like psychopaths when not on the front? Carthage (talk) 07:41, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
He probably thought that Wagner would be disoriented after he killed Prigozhin. Arcadium Trancefer (talk) 10:23, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
Or has Put in created many mini-Prigozhins? Anna Livia (talk) 23:24, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

trUmp is a chud

the problem with boycotts in florida (or any red state)...

... is that they disproportionately affect the liberal areas. for instance, the article in the wigo entry largely focuses on broward county, which is one of the more liberal counties in the state – having voted for democratic candidate charlie crist in 2022 even as other liberal counties like osceola (orlando area), hillsborough (tampa), and even neighboring dade (miami) fell to desantis. this won't do much to change the minds of current policymakers (who are mostly republican, for those who don't know) because the liberal cities and counties (who oppose the policies sparking all the backlash anyway) will bear the brunt of all the boycotts. in other words, they're suffering economically over something that's no fault of their own. it's not only florida. our funspace article on texas (and georgia, to a certain extent) explore this phenomenon a bit, too. to paraphrase the line from the tx article, it's a win-win for reactionaries. The G (talk) 01:08, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

The funders of American reactionaryism are also responding negatively to the excessive culture war bullshit pushed by Meatball Ron and co... which makes sense, because these plutocrat ghouls are funding fascist movements out of their own economic and cultural self-interests, but punishing business for, well, doing business also goes against their class interests. Meatball Ron done fucked up. Carthage (talk) 01:21, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
also, just to add a little bit more snark to the situation, it's pretty ironic how a convention is being moved from florida to... texas, of all places. like, what's the point? six of one, half a dozen of another. The G (talk) 01:55, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
Texas has been trending bluer as Florida has been trending redder. It'll probably be a decade or too before we see real change there, but it is legitimately a better bet than Florida at this point. Plutocow (talk) 02:02, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
I would say, "not really". One of Florida's appeal to the elders (many of them "the reactionaries") is that there is no personal income tax for the state. Now, if there is no income tax (or estate tax, inheritance tax, gift tax), where does the money for actually running Florida come from? The answer is by extracting cash from the huge amount of tourism coming into Florida. Tourism means that a not-terribly-outrageous sales tax (6% for the state) generates 80% of the budget revenue.
Now, frankly, I haven't really seen evidence that "woke" politics is affecting the tourist tax base one way or another at this time (generally more mundane things affect economics). That is... yet. (Obviously FY2023 numbers aren't yet in, as DeSantis tried to "go more national" his behavior got worse, and it seems like most of the convention cancellations etc. are this year). But if it did, it would not only hit the "blue" counties with their convention centers, but also the budget of the whole state (that depends on tourists paying that 6% sales tax). It's actually not a great time for DeSantis to be playing this sort of game with Orlando conventions and Disney; the Miami area, having embraced the crypto scene for some stupid reason, is currently taking a bit of a "bath" with the recent crypto crashes. I suppose DeSantis' hope is all of those incoming Villages and Naples elders spend a lot of money on things to make up for it... BobJohnson (talk) 03:31, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
I'm not sure that boycotting areas always works. Last year I had occasion to visit the least populated and most Republican county in all of New England, Essex County in Vermont. Part of why it's so Republican is a cult basically hijacked one of the 3 most populated towns there (Brighton, better known as Island Pond), but even without that it's a remarkably isolated place; it's clear the overwhelmingly Democratic state government (notwithstanding their actually reasonable Republican governor) has grossly underinvested in the area. Just over the Connecticut River is Coos County, New Hampshire, which despite similar difficulties in getting to is much more connected to the outside world; I liked Berlin and Gorham just fine, but I came away from Essex County thinking I'd found somewhere entirely different and wanting to come back for more. From talking to a few people there, they highly distrust generic "outsiders" but are also happy to actually talk to those who show up actually knowing a bit in advance with an open mind. In my case I'd never go to Florida, but not because of DeSantis the Nasally; Connecticut has by far the best pizza anywhere, and I love the wildly unpredictable climate of New England. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 04:53, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
Not everyone is boycotting Florida just because they don't want to hurt them financially, many people also fear homophobic, transphobic and racist attacks. IluzasipalStone them! 12:55, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
And aside from blustering on about library books and similar, and some generic nasty rhetoric from politicians, has there been any actual rise in such attacks in Florida? I don't recall hearing about any sort of increase, though since I'm from Connecticut it's not exactly something I painstakingly track. If there has been I'd be interested in the data. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 14:57, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
Does there need to be an increase in actual reported crimes? A lot of people will look at upswings of rhetoric and come to the conclusion [with some justification] that there's a direct correleation between words and deeds. Esp when it is officials making such words. KarmaPolice (talk) 15:21, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── @Iluzasipal so here's my hot take on the matter (in case it was not immediately evident): these boycotts might come with good intentions, but they are very misguided. i was in florida last month. i visited miami and the keys. not once did i feel in danger of the political climate there (keep in mind that i'm considered a minority in this country). i think the perceived threats to minorities and lgbt people are way overblown. the unintended consequence is that minority and lgbt business owners will suffer as a result. in other words, these boycotts are hurting the very people they're meant to help. it's no wonder that some business owners criticized the travel advisories that were issued earlier this year. The G (talk) 15:41, 25 August 2023 (UTC)

Florida's national crime reporting currently is shit because of their slowness in updating their national reporting systems to the latest modern FBI standard. So it's hard to directly compare statistics to previous years at the moment. Personally, speaking as someone living in the state, I don't think there actually is a bigger threat to minorities / LGBT that is any different than the pre-DeSantis period. However, I don't think it is wise to discount the power of rhetoric from top officials. In addition, DeSantis' shitty, hastily crafted and vague laws, such as those on "drag shows", have caused some IMHO justified worries with certain conventions. (Think of conventions that engage in cosplay, such as anime / sci-fi conventions, as an example). BobJohnson (talk) 15:57, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
@Plutocow (ec) it'll be a while before texas finally flips back to democrats. sure, they're making gains in urban areas, but they're losing south texas just as quickly as they're losing south florida. maybe the urban areas will make up for the losses, but for their sake, i hope democrats don't forget about south tx latinos in the same way they forgot about south fl latinos (and fl in general) after the 2012 election. [10] in the meantime, the fact that abbott was re-elected by more than 10 points despite all the migrant flights and the mishandling of the uvalde massacre (to say nothing of the explosive allegations from earlier this year of his treatment of migrants on the border) means they're not out of the woods just yet. The G (talk) 16:18, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
@BobJohnson i can understand where you're coming from, but the point of boycotts disproportionately harming liberal areas still stands. this might be why desantis and friends aren't willing to change their minds anytime soon. i've noticed a similar trend with the anti-abortion states after roe was overturned. people want to avoid the anti-abortion states because of politics and understandably out of fear for their own safety. the result is that the residents of those states suffer economically, while minorities and rural residents in particular are finding healthcare more inaccessible (as many medical students and new doctors are avoiding anti-abortion states, also). [11] The G (talk) 18:08, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
Well, according to Texas's AG, Biden would have won Texas in 2020 if they hadn't blocked Harris County from sending out mail-in ballots, so take from that what you will. The gains in the Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth areas more than make up for the losses along the border counties, which are considerably less populated by comparison. Overall, the problem with Texas is that it has the worst voter suppression in the country, but without that it'd already be a purple state, perhaps a blue-leaning one as well. Plutocow (talk) 19:04, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
@G Man Found this article, which claims that antisemitic violence rose by 100% since 2019 and by 300% (!) since 2012 (as of 2021) and this regarding transphobic violence: "Cooper says HRC has noticed a rise in fatal violence across the South, particularly in Texas, Florida and Georgia." TBF no numbers, and I couldn't be bothered to read through the original source. Awful website design. IluzasipalStone them! 22:28, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
hmm, interesting observations. i would be interested in seeing a map of these incidents. a geographic distribution of such incidents would certainly add context to the matter.
as for the political leanings of texas, i feel like the attorney general's account is an oversimplification of the outcome of the 2020 election. democrats winning texas is the perfect pretext for restricting absentee ballots, but who knows whether it would have really affected the outcome. it's not like democrats are the only ones who vote by mail. another likely reason democrats lost texas was because they massively scaled back canvassing efforts because of covid (bonus: florida, too). there are other factors at play, and we can only guess how elections would be like if they were free and fair. (however, it's not hard to believe that progressives would win more often. progressive ballot measures do tend to be popular, after all.) The G (talk) 03:07, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

just to be clear, yes i am aware of the shootings in jacksonville and the implications it may have on this topic. my heart goes out to the victims. The G (talk) 03:20, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

What do you think of Kaiser VS

Kaiser VS

←§ Edward the eight (talk) 03:48, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

Is that like "Snoopy vs. the Red Baron"? Spud (talk) 08:07, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
it's much worse he is French wehraboo who defends Nazi Germany, he also appeals to Tankies and Tojoboos ( western apologists of Japanese empire), he essentially radicalises teenagers down the Alt-right pipeline ←§ Edward the eight (talk) 08:31, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
Oh, fuck me! I thought it was a video game. Well why did you have to ask? He's a piece of shit, obviously. If by, "What do you think of...?" you mean "Can I create an article about...?" The answer is "Yes." Our current threshold for who is a notable enough YouTuber to warrant an article about them is they have to have one thousand subscribers. So Kaiser VS meets that criteria 444 times over. Time we updated the policy, don't you think? Spud (talk) 12:07, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
Lol, then we're way behind on articles about youtubers.-Ryan1257 (talk) 16:17, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

Trump mugshot

He'll be arrested this evening and the jail will release the mugshot. It's easy to anticipate this photo will gain iconic status for years to come. Chillpilled (talk) 21:45, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

Donald Trump mug shot.jpg Ψ (talk) 03:54, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
He looks like he intends to eat someone's spleen. Kencolt (talk) 03:59, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
An angry bird, 🖕. Bongolian (talk) 07:34, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
And that picture will be the one that will define both his presidency, and his life. In history books on the early 21st century, that picture will be the reference pic for Trump. For all the wrong reasons, he will be the American president most people remember. If the maxim, "The populace gets the leaders they deserve." is true. Then the USA has really fucked up. Cardinal Chang (talk) 16:00, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
The version I came across was - 'the populace gets the leaders they deserve - what the **** did we do?'
How does the Peter Principle 'work' in relation to Donald Trump? Anna Livia (talk) 16:06, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
The Peter Principle? "a person who is competent at their job will earn a promotion to a position that requires different skills". Other than running businesses into the ground, what other skills has he attained? Cardinal Chang (talk) 16:26, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
I know, I know, there's a second half to the Peter Principle, but I just liked the glib response that echoed the 2nd amendment nutters. Cardinal Chang (talk) 16:28, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
This image is very funny. It's gonna be a meme soon, mark my words.The Krusty Krab (talk) 18:35, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
This picture perfectly encapsulates the "angry white man" stereotype although I guess 50% of Americans will take this as "American hero heroically stands up to the oppression by the woke up". ULTRACOMFY (talk) 19:08, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
He’s literally doing the Kubrick Stare. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 19:25, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
Mobile Task Force Theta-28 "Eola Golino" has found SCP-5004-B. The Krusty Krab (talk) 21:47, 25 August 2023 (UTC) (+1 points if you get the reference.)
Much like the above, people will either see the Trump mugshot and be disgusted or inspired, and there's very little overlap for the stans of both people. CorruptUser 19:54, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
Unless Andy Warhol and Gerard Malanga come back from the dead and do a satin print, like Gerry did with the Ché image. I doubt Trumps portrait will be as iconicCardinal Chang (talk) 07:49, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
Yes, yes. I know Gerard Malanga is not dead. But most people haven't a clue who he is and what he was responsible for. (Getting broke in Italy and creating an iconic image for drinking money...)Cardinal Chang (talk) 07:51, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
You don't need the original artist to copy their style. Remember Obama's iconic "hope" image? Remember how EVERYONE copied it? CorruptUser 16:18, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
Back to the mugshot of Trump. His inmate number has also been released as well. He's now inmate P01135809 at the Fulton County Jail. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 10:32, 27 August 2023 (UTC)
You know, I now see how people think badly taken photos are proof of someone being a demon or a reptilian because damn, he looks grossly inhuman in this one.Ryan1257 (talk) 06:26, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
"He looks good, and he looks hard." - Jesse Walters exhibiting his unblemished heterosexual record about Trump's mugshot. Carthage (talk) 06:34, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
I guess. That unedited photo isn't the best-looking, but at least it's an accurate depiction to who he actually is as a person. But no matter what, "Donald Trump"'s or *ahem* P01135809's face and expression here will be used at his expense for years and years to come. Although those nutjobs that run P01135809's campaign are using that photo to sell merchandise to those that still drink his Kool-Aid (which probably tastes just like rotten cantaloupes mixed with his own boiled-down urine). As of writing, 7.1 million dollars of merchandise was sold to those knuckle-draggin' troglodytes. Guess all that Kool-Aid P01135809 had been peddling and pushing for decades is still dealing damage (But the drinkers of the Kool-Aid continue to guzzle it anyway.). TheEternalOutsider (talk) 09:42, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
His mural in Atlanta. My Ass Got Arrested.CorruptUser 18:05, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
The code P01135809 is 9 digits long. There's two 1's. Using the 2, the middle 5 digits become the first 6 entries in the Fibanacci sequence. Without the Fibanacci sequence you get P009. P009 upside down is "G00d". 9-5 is a big hit by Dolly Parton. Parton = Pardon. Dolly Parton and Donald Trump are both famous for having large assets that are probably fake. WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?! CorruptUser 15:12, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

Morocco controlled and Polisario controlled Western Sahara: Pick your poison


From my understanding human rights violations occur on each side of the never ending conflict (maybe with the heat death of the universe). Which one do you go with? --Trans Fem Agenda 22:03, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

That's a simplistic analysis. Morocco is actively colonizing the Western Sahara and denying the Sahrawi people their right to self-determination. The Polisario Front by contrast is fighting to liberate Western Sahara from Morocco colonialism. So the PF aren't innocent by any means, but they are fighting a war of insurgency against an oppressive colonial regime. So if I had to choose I'd go with the guys not doing the colonizing, although this in no way absolves the PF of their human rights violations. Carthage (talk) 00:07, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
If I had my choice between the two (irrespective of my views), I would choose living in the Moroccan controlled portion. This is not out of holding any hate but out of a better living standard. I cannot say how much better but at least it would be easier time getting food, clean drinking water and medical care. On the political side of things: If I ran Polisario I would, on the surface, accept the autonomy proposal but once integration happened: Unilaterally declare independence. It would be a practical way to get independence. There would be infrastructure, basic utilities and natural resources to take over. The status quo conflict is completely impractical and wastes resources for a certain failure. --Trans Fem Agenda 01:19, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
What's stopping Morocco from rolling troops right in as soon as Western Sahara declares independence? Morocco could claim it's a violation of the ceasefire agreement. As for which one we'd choose to live in... that's the crux of the issue, isn't it? We're neither Moroccan or Sahrawi. I'd imagine what the Sahrawi think is more important than what we think from our cozy positions here in the West? Carthage (talk) 01:25, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
That is a tough one. So far it seems that with any choice you are screwed. --Trans Fem Agenda 01:48, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
There's no oil for anyone to care. Money trumps morals every single time. Ψ (talk) 02:49, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
The only reason breakaway polities like South Ossetia, Abkhazia, and Northern Cyprus still exist is because of outside intervention. Taiwan has managed to entangle itself in the complex web of geopolitics that outright invasion would be disastrous for China, the current status quo is preferable for all parties. Artsakh is only hanging on by a thread, and Somaliland is independent because Somalia is a failed state. An ethical argument could be made that all of these polities have the right to self-determination, but geopolitics does not operate on ethical lines. Foreign policy is solely about power, furthering your country's interests at the expense of all others. I've seen international politics be compared to a poker game before, and the game is rigged. Some players just start out luckier than others. Carthage (talk) 03:15, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
UPDATED LINK: https://freedomhouse.org/country/western-sahara/freedom-world/2023 (Freedom Status, 4/100. 7 points in civil liberties, docked three points in political rights due to ethnic cleansing by Morocco.)
The whole Moroccan berm that Morocco built landlocks the Polisario, which is yet another thing that has to be brought up about the situation. The Polisario, meanwhile, conduct most of their lives in exile in southwestern Algeria due to the lack of safety in their supposed home. The Polisario also have Spanish as a significant language, which is a bit of a tense topic concerning Morocco, as Spain occupied their Mediterranean coast until 1956, controlled Western Sahara until 1975, and still has Ceuta and Melilla, which gives Morocco and Spain a land border that has been a contentious debate concerning refugees. And finally, Mauritania has claims over Western Sahara as well, complicating things a lot more. No matter what, every party involved is in a state of zugzwang, and the status quo is detrimental as well to boot. And nobody is willing to conduct a peaceful treaty either. If I had the power to do something about it, I would likely end up partitioning the territory by drawing lines on a map, revising it if no consensus occurred, which ultimately in the end would probably not help anyone either.
Seriously, borders are not just lines on a map, and anywhere on this planet there are disputes, there will be disputes. Even in North America, there's a swath of ocean in the Gulf of Maine with a barren and foggy island known as Machias Seal Island that is disputed between the US and Canada, full of succulent lobsters to fish for money. (Canada has a lighthouse there to assert control, there's no clear rules over who gets what leading to competition, and the island really isn't a priority at the federal level on either side, so that island would likely be a source of friction for the locals that the federal governments won't address.) TheEternalOutsider (talk) 14:19, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

The "Free Zone" controlled by Polisario is essentially a Hellhole due to the fact that none of it is developed and the fact that there is little to no water supply. Algeria only seems to care about the Sahawari people is so they can stick it to Morocco. If, by some divine act, Polisario beats Morocco, Algeria would probably try to take over. There is no real benefits for Algeria if Polisario won as it would likely create a bigger conflict between Polisario and the current residents of Western Sahara. --Trans Fem Agenda 23:31, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

Trying to understand the whole thing about Jung

From my knowledge of Jung, he was quite a prominent psychoanalyst in his time with some, well, wacky and pseudoscientific ideas like synchronicity and collective unconscious. Honestly I like his ideas as being allegorical in a way, like the shadow not being and actual physical manifestation (or spiritual or whatever) but just kinda a nice little story to theorise on the way that people may or may not have these dark impulses and such. Honestly, to me, a lot of his work seems to work really work from a media analysis (films, books, games, etc.)

However, one thing that caused alarm bells to ring was because of Jordan Peterson, more specially, Peterson talking about Jung’s book Aion. Peterson seems to love Jung and he described Aion as something along the lines of the most terrifying book. I tried to get a grasp on why, and after some research I came up empty handed, from what I understand it’s something to do with Astrology, the collective unconscious and anti-Christ, I don’t know which parts are meant to metaphorical, concrete or spiritual, but to me it just seems to hold little, if any, scientific value when it comes to human psychology (I understand that it’s not meant to be psychology, but I’m trying to look at this of strict materialistic, scientific angle). On top of that some people have stated that it’s “dangerous” to read Jung. Like apparently it can put you into a state of psychosis or mild schizophrenia??? (No joke, that’s what someone on the subreddit said). Like, yeah, maybe that could be the case for someone as susceptible to bad mental health as myself but it just seems weird to me that certain books, no matter how far out there, can apparently have the same effect as pvycahdleics?

Now the biggest curveball that was thrown my way was the Jung subreddit and people there talk about having almost prophetic dreams after reading Jung, mentions of the immortal self, being trapped in lower worlds, their unconscious changing and shaping and needing certain life experience in order to read some of his books. The thing about all that, it felt like they were not talking in allegories but as if all this was some actual physical/spiritual manifestation and it just, well, freaks me the fuck out.

I’ve been suffering from chronic anxiety lately and a few times flirted with mania, I was under the impression that Jung was more scientifically inclined? But it seems very spiritual and I’ve not seen anyone speak much critically about the veracity of it, it all seems to be accepted as fact (at least according to the Jung subreddit which I guess makes sense) and that is really fucking with me, because lately my grasp on reality has been waving and I don’t know what the fuck is actually real. Maybe it’s because I’ve been looking in the wrong places but it just seems like it’s taken at face value that the, frankly, unfalsifiable concepts proposed by Jung are just assumed to be real.—WMS (talk) 22:18, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

Neither Carl Jung and Freud used the scientific method and can be regarded as protoscientists of modern psychology, which despite it's problems does at least give weight to the scientific method. There is so much that has transpired since the time of Freud and Jung (advances in neuroscience, psychiatric pharmacology, and evidence-based psychotherapies), that it's really not worth studying them except to learn about the history of the field. Bongolian (talk) 03:13, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
Maybe protoscience. The thing is, there already was some good psychology science done before Freud's ideas became popular. In the late 19th and early 20th century, some studies into the nature and limits of perception, the stuff which would be revived a century later as the study of the "adaptive unconscious", or nonconscious processing, as part of cognitive science, was being done. Timothy D. Wilson in Strangers to Ourselves points out how those early studies read very much like the work of a century later. Though with simpler equipment and no computer analysis nor inspiration, still it had the chance to begin mapping flaws of perception and some cognitive biases. But suddenly everyone lost interest in that, a century spent distracted by the attention-grabbing ideas of Freud and then the behaviorist counter-reaction to Freud, before coming around to pick up where science had left off a century earlier.
As for Jung, he's popular with New Agers, Western "healers" (including plastic shamans who reinterpret all indigenous teachings through a Jungian lens), etc. You really can psychologically "see" a lot by considering Jung's ideas, it can be good inspiration. The problem is, working that way is art, not science, and everyone with any axe to grind will see exactly what they're invested in seeing when they do so. Every opposed camp with a slick Jungian in it has a super-sophisticated analysis of how the other side goes wrong with shadow projection, etc., while the in-group is totally in the right. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 05:06, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
Ahh I see, that makes a lot more sense than my mistaken belief that they were more rigorous about the use of scientific method. Cheers guys for explaining the hubbub, and I do agree that Jung’s approach seems more interpretive and art like (which would explain the appeal to New Agers). One thing that still confuses me is how much more positively Jung is seen compared to Freud (at least from what I’ve seen). I think it’s because, whilst Jung’s approach does not have much scientific merit, it does seem to be interesting to ponder in other ways, like literature. Or, if I were to be more cynical, I’d say the prominence of New Agers who fell in love with Jung as opposed to Freud.—WMS (talk) 19:11, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
I can make no claim as to the effectiveness of any form of talking therapy. Consider that a human personality is not treated as a general object by the analytic and psychoanalytic schools, but as a unique individual. This is especially true with respect to Jung's Analytical Psychology. I think of their approach as that of artists attempting to restore a damaged work of art. Humans are, of course, the subjects of countless scientific studies. But they are, for the most part, impersonal, statistical studies. Or, another analogy might be, that of a superb plastic surgeon. It is as an artist that they would engage the public. Those that study their methods may lack the skill to execute them. Bongolian is certainly right that these historical figures are not worth reading by those uninterested in the history of the subject.Ariel31459 (talk) 20:19, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
In high school I was taught the Jungian hierarchy of needs uncritically but also never went into Jung as a means to self actualization. Just floor level, what humans all need. Is the Jungian floor level a bad place to start? 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 03:25, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

I think I just found this site's theme tune.

Oh my God, this song fits my attitude towards the entire notion of political conservatism to a T. 🤣 Well, maybe not the entire notion of conservatism — liberalism does need a counterbalance to rein it in to what can realistically be achieved and prevent it from recklessly pursuing dumb ideas (like, say, communism or New Age shit) in the name of "progress" — but definitely Trumpism, the Religious Right, the alt-right, and the modern Republican Party in general. Those who can't (or won't) adapt to reality and morality and insist on dragging humanity backwards to barbarity really would be better off dead. The music video even has goats!!!! Luigifan18 (talk) 17:21, 24 August 2023 (UTC)

Counterpoint. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 18:33, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
I find this quite distasteful. 𝒮𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓃𝑒 talk 21:21, 24 August 2023 (UTC)
Dunno what's quite so dumb/insane about the notion that entrenched class rule derived through the coercive exploitation of labor is unethical, but OK... Also, conservatism is the ideology which holds that certain hierarchies are both natural and good, and that any efforts to oppose these hierarchies (say, through organized labor or racial activism) is a disturbance to the natural order... If you think that's the counterbalance liberalism needs, and not, say, social democracy to counteract the excessively harmful impacts of capital (at least domestically, social democracy does nothing to end the continued neocolonial domination and exploitation of the global south), then I question your priorities and/or political literacy. There also isn't really any real conservative movement anymore, at least here in the States, as harmful as traditional conservatism is it's been gobbled up by Trumpist fascism. Carthage (talk) 01:15, 25 August 2023 (UTC)
A song called "Hurry up and Die" most definitely should not be the theme song of RationalWiki. It should be our positon that we do not wish death on anybody, no matter how vile and hateful they may be. "Stop wasting air"? That's the kind of stuff fascists say. We need to be better than that. Besides, it's not only older people who can't accept that the world has moved on that are the problem. How many of those YouTube turds that we've got pages about are over 50? Spud (talk) 02:04, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
This is better. Yes, it's about a thing called "Skibidi Toilet", but look at how deep the lyrics are.The Krusty Krab (talk) 16:57, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
But how do we reconcile the absurdity of Skibidi Toilet with the direct action of a slap and chop combination? It is currently very convenient to consume media, diversity is mixed. Spud can't be older than me, Gaul Dernitt. I am with it with all of it, silly is okay for its own sense. Fun is fun. But I agree that the idea of 'die' or 'kill yourself' is actually indirectly harmful. I think it's not difficult to be smarter than that 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 02:59, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
Gaul Dernitt, my old friend, I just turned 50 two days ago, which is no doubt why I said, "over 50" above. And so far, I'm loving it.
"Skibidi Toilet" is indeed much better than "Hurry up and Die", simply because it doesn't call on anyone to die. "Wave of Reason" is fun. Pity it features Richard Dawkins so heavily. And a bit of Queen Latifah never goes amiss. Spud (talk) 13:31, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

On the Thresholds of Social Acceptability

What can be seen as acceptable or not in society can vary a lot, and unfortunately, it is riddled with personal biases and perceptions, making things far more subjective than objective. It's just that the goalposts seem to constantly get moved against me, and not always in a good way.

The vague lines in the sand vary from people to people based on biases and backgrounds, and that can also be a tough place to look at. Something that offends one person may not offend another, and the former and latter's importance are subjective from person to person. But trying to offend absolutely nobody is a tantalizing pipe dream, since no matter what, it is almost certain there is going to be SOMEONE on this planet who would get offended.

If you want to see my current situation and why I feel so nervous, check my talk page. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 15:24, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

"Don't be a bigoted dick." Carthage (talk) 15:39, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

But that would be another facet the question, since the term "bigoted dick" can be subjective and at times a snarl word misused by bad actors who would throw it at valid criticism. Someone could just call someone that, fabricate evidence to give it a veneer of legitimacy, and then implicate someone on a false charge. You get my point, right?

(Note: I am not calling you a bad actor by any means. I'm just responding to a lack of context in your short adage.) TheEternalOutsider (talk) 15:51, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

UPDATE: If I sound a little blunt with my explanation, I am just bringing up one example. Since subjectivity and objectivity are quite a mess, it could be a little better to look at acceptability not as a single line in the sand but as a gradient. There's the obvious nutjobs that are the extremists and tin foil hatters, but then there's those that are in between moderate/acceptable and hateful/offensive (but haplessly get slammed by mobs on social media anyway). Whether someone is a bigot or not is not as black and white as many of the social media dwellers make it out to be. It varies, since someone can theoretically be a bigot in one category but fully accepting in another. All I could ask is where everyone sees the lines and shades of their thresholds of what they like and dislike as well as what they think is acceptable for them. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 16:16, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
What do you think a "valid criticism" would be? Against who, exactly? Carthage (talk) 16:26, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
I have to spend some time thinking about that, and it is quite complicated with how it all comes together. In my eyes, and this can change based on context, the validity of criticism comes from its sourcing, its spin, and its tone. Just try to be polite is one way, but even then, it's quite difficult to tell for sure. If you wanted a clear and concise answer, just be clear that everything isn't so black and white.

Now nobody is immune from criticism, so that part of the question can be answered. Anyone can be criticized for their life and their behaviors, especially active behaviors online. And it is also difficult to tell criticism from abuse or hate either, which is another thing that I have thought of. The lines are so blurry that my answer above can only do so much. But maybe my perceptions of the vicious social media mobs (especially when criticism is levied against someone who as a large number of loyal followers to unconditionally attack and defame critics) are what seem to spur this in the first place. Ratting someone out to the social media mobs would be a severe breach of trust as well.

Why am I even here to answer? Well, I have suffered a lot from zero tolerance institutions such as schools that have treated me poorly and used rigid protocols that were harmful long-term. And I don't know if RationalWiki functions like a zero tolerance institution (One strike, you're out) in any ways.

I may have not told you this, but I have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum disorder, and my social skills have been quite lacking in certain areas. Something that has bitten me way too many times than I can count. And combined with zero-tolerance educational institutions and forced social interactions, and I have been hurt quite hard. I just don't want a repeat of the same trauma I faced in school being faced here on this site. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 16:48, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

Since you've not been very specific, the general rules of engagement are: the RationalWiki:Community Standards#Conduct, and the Civility page which is part of the Community Standards. Bongolian (talk) 17:49, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

Thanks for the general links, while I was attempting to look for something beyond that. Maybe it's best to close this conversation. (I just don't know what to do first on this site, that's all.) TheEternalOutsider (talk) 17:58, 26 August 2023 (UTC) I'll likely be on the debate and essay namespaces from now on. And if I do come here, I should be talking about something more concise, such as what's going on online.

So can I move this away from the Bar and onto a different page where this would be more appropriate? TheEternalOutsider (talk) 18:13, 26 August 2023 (UTC)

Your questions above were fine for the Saloon. Bongolian (talk) 19:32, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
Just respect the community standards (which others have linked to) and you'll be fine. You will notice that our mainpage states: "We welcome contributors, and encourage those who disagree with us to register and engage in constructive dialogue." You might be better advised to consider what we say about ourselves and about the standards we publish than to consider what third parties say about us. To your other point - you cannot unilaterally close a SB conversation (or any conversation) even if you started it.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 19:46, 26 August 2023 (UTC)
You can criticize people without mentioning their nationality, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexuality, medical conditions or anything else that's irrelevant to why you're criticizing them. There's a huge difference between calling someone "stupid" and calling someone a "stupid woman". There's a huge difference between calling someone a "liar" and calling someone an "Australian liar". Spud (talk) 03:18, 27 August 2023 (UTC)
But now that all is said and done, what can be helpful is that if anything would be controversial or in case of a mistake, that a set of templates can be placed for disclaimer purposes or corrections on talk pages and debates. We can start by making templates on these (currently red) links: Template:Opinion, Template:Controversial, Template:HotTake, Template:Mistake, and Template:StoppedClock. Just be clear that these should be designed to be used on said talk pages or conversations. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 12:15, 27 August 2023 (UTC)
I really don't think those would be necessary. Look, expressing anti-Semitism, racism, misogynism, homophobia and transphobia is not OK, no template will excuse it and it will probably very quickly lead to a ban. If you think you are in danger of saying anything like that, you'd better leave now and save us all the trouble. Otherwise, you really don't have to worry about expressing your opinions. Can you say you love Donald Trump? Yes. Can you say Charles Darwin was the Antichrst who is burning in hell? Yes. Can you say you like pineapple on your pizza? Yes. You don't have to apologize for that. Spud (talk) 15:14, 27 August 2023 (UTC)
I agree with Spud, but I think form is also important, not only substance. Saying that you support Donald Trump won't get you blocked or banned, it's true, but being disruptive will. It's ok to say controversial things once in a while (Cory, one of our mods, is by his own admission a bit of a provocateur), but creating dozens of controversial topics just to get a reaction from the community is not. By the way, I think you did the right thing by asking us these questions. GeeJayKWhere all evil dwells Where every lie is true 17:13, 27 August 2023 (UTC)
I also doubt that we need such templates. Things are either acceptable under our CS or they are not. Adding a template would not change that either way.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:20, 27 August 2023 (UTC)
But then there's the gray areas. I need to know if there is anything to do with those. I know better than to say certain things towards strangers for shock value. Where this gets tense is if I say something that borderline opposes the common consensus but does not technically violate the CS. If some editor think I am disruptive by saying something borderline, but others aren't, then things get tough. Stuff that is borderline such as extremely controversial opinions and speculations targeting immutable (or immutable to some) traits (race, sex, gender, etc.) are what I was talking about. (Miscellaneous question: Though with what was mentioned above, if the target was a majority (i.e. blatant heterophobia), does that count as a violation too?) Thanks for reading and answering my questions either way. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 20:44, 27 August 2023 (UTC)
Yet I think I could keep a personal tracker/template page that would track the days since my last hot take / borderline incident. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 20:53, 27 August 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I, too, have The Big A, and I've found the people here have put up with me. With some regularity I have a penchant for meaning well while saying it the worst way possible, and occasionally being a fucking idiot and posting some screed in the wrong conversation (see a couple discussions above), but if you're genuine and will actually listen when you get pushback you'll be fine here. I like it here because people will fight me on my views, and if I don't ultimately agree it's because I had to think the issue through and actually justify myself. In the broader world, I would agree that there's some belling the catWikipedia mentality around autism; everyone agrees autistic people are better off with friends, but hey you want 'me' to be your friend you disgusting creep!!11!!1!! Sorry I was trying to be a decent friend, I won't make that mistake again. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:38, 28 August 2023 (UTC)

@TheEternalOutsider Again, you cannot say anything racist, sexist, homophobic or transphobic. Using a template, whether it's just for you or for users in general, will not excuse that. Being on the autism spectrum and having OCD will not excuse that. Again, if you think you are in danger of saying anything racist, sexist, homophobic or transphobic, then please leave now and save both us and you the drama. Spud (talk) 12:57, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
Plus, even if you don't mean it that way, if someone tells you that's how you're coming off just listen. You don't always have to agree with it, but doubling down will only make it worse. It's fine to say you didn't mean it and that you also won't repeat it. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:05, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
I think something should be added on this part by TheEternalOutsider, because that's never addressed above: "If some editor think I am disruptive by saying something borderline, but others aren't, then things get tough." There's never any guarantee that everyone will get along, neither here nor anywhere else in the world. And here, it's often enough happened that some member ends up at odds with some other member, while both remain because they don't really break any rules. A few are more trigger-happy, a few escalate the tone more easily, some are super-sensitive on a specific topic or two but otherwise reasonable. While not that common, if it gets really bad between a pair of members, an interaction ban can be made between them. Anyway, there's always a risk that there'll be some drama, either soon or later in the future. --ApooftGnegiol (talk) 05:56, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
In my own opinion, schools [and esp American schools] are terrible places of human interaction. They shove you all in a building where tons of facty facts [many of dubious worth] are ladled into you until you puke, make it almost impossible to avoid person(s) you seriously don't get on with [for 'personality clashes' are real, normally blameless and unsolvable] and thow a load of stresses [much of it confected] onto structures which aren't that experienced to cope with it while bellowing at you to paint yourself fucking magnolia so you can 'get with the programme'. In short; seeing school as a reasonable example of human interaction is like seeing, say Donald Trump as a reasonable example of an American President.
Which goes to RW itself. As far as I can tell, we're a fairly tolerant lot; the only things which do seem to get on our goats is disruptive trolling, vandalism, repeated personal insults and/or pushing of extremist views. I mean, yeah this place does have an Overton Window of I'd guess American and 'liberal' but you're not gonna have your privates nailed to a board if you're outside of it [though I would say you're gonna get a stronger demand to justify your positions]. But then again, that's only for the Bar, not RW in general - I mean there's loads of current editors which I see doing 'RW stuff' who never come in to this 'room'. The Bar habitues [like myself, suppose] are generally fairly easy-going; part of my suspicion is that too many of us are simply too knackered/ancient/busy to be overly upset over disagreements.
Anyway, if you're really that bothered, you can look at the archives of both the Chicken Coop and the Mod noticeboard. There you'll get a bit of a glimpse of what it does take RW as a community to actually act on something, and if I take my experiences of other forums etc over waaay too many years, it's rather a lot. KarmaPolice (talk) 21:26, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

Flat Earth: It is easier to get easy answers than research complex truths about the universe

All I can think of when I see Flerf arguments I can only hear, "I want easy answers instead of years of dedicated study into natural phenomena". Just a thought. --Trans Fem Agenda 22:57, 28 August 2023 (UTC)

At least online it seems like a significant percentage is trolling and shitposting, I think. (Though, we know what the Vonnegut said about becoming what we pretend to be...)
Still, the same seems to apply for a lot of other conspiracy theories. People want not only easy answers, but Hollywood-esque stories to go with them. BobJohnson (talk) 01:25, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
I think it takes more energy to actively and willfully deny obvious reality than to simply acknowledge reality. Carthage (talk) 01:27, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
But then, those Flat Earthers don't even think that reality is a reality in the first place. And when backed into a corner or called out, they put on their tin foil hats are start spewing nonsense. But then, it takes less energy to make up conspiracy theories than it does to do research and verify claims. Other times, it could just be Poe's Law in action. Even if the pro-Flat Earth content is just parody, it's not funny either way. It's counterproductive to everyone involved. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 09:40, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
I still think, using your own example of "when backed into a corner and called out, they put on their tin foil hats and start spewing nonsense" that it takes more energy to deny than to acknowledge. Those engaging in denial have a vested interest in said denial, be it psychological or material. That requires energy to expend, more so in some cases than simple intellectual honesty. Carthage (talk) 13:50, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
Yet, Flat Earthers often don't care if they expend more energy, since many of them have already drank their Kool-Aid to the point of no return. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 11:12, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

Why does this wiki not have an article about "Math being racist"

The closest thing we have is the CRT article and it doesn't even have the word math in it. VerminWiki (talk) 21:01, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

I'll give the answer I always give when people ask why we don't have an article about X. If you think the subject would be interesting and missional, you can always write one. GeeJayKWhere all evil dwells Where every lie is true 21:08, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
...I'm trying to get my head around the idea of "math is racist" in the first place. Numbers aren't something I generally connect with race. Kencolt (talk) 22:17, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
It is probably some kind of straw man if I had to guess, but sources would be helpful to determine that. Chillpilled (talk) 22:31, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
Because no one of influence genuinely thinks that and it has nothing to do with CRT. It is also barely relevant as a culture war moral panic as of now. Anyone who knows of the history of mathematics would know that it is a cross-cultural phenomenon. We use numerals that originated from ancient India and were later adopted by the Arabic — joint ancient civilizations who gave us the number “0” and invented algebra by the way. Fuck, it was the Chinese that invented paper. Calculus during the European Enlightenment would have not happened if it weren‘t for these developments created by people of colour. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:59, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
According to this Washington Post article, the idea (or at least a part of a drama) started when USA Today wrote an article claiming that math education was racist and used the completely fitting and absolutely not misunderstandable title "Is math racist?". IluzasipalStone them! 23:10, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
Looked at this from here bc some folks at newsweek hated on it, and most of the proposed changes sound quite reasonable to me. Like trying to use more real world examples or accepting other possible ways to to the solution if they are mathematically correct. The main issue from the conservative side is the usual "relativism" stuff culminating in articles like this claiming that leftist think 2+2=4 is racist, probably based on a misrepresentation of a NYC math prof who claimed that saying math isn't racist because 2+2=4 would smell of racism.IluzasipalStone them! 23:26, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
The people who write the headlines and the people who write the actual article are often completely separate people. I wish more people knew this. Chillpilled (talk) 01:12, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
These articles are also two years old and it seems the headlines have already been edited to reflect their genuine thesis. Do we really need an article every time media conservatives decide not to read past a headline and freak out about it for a short period of time before some other manufactured controversy gets their attention? It only seems worthwhile for us to write about if it has some lasting relevancy, and I am not entirely sure it does in this context. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 01:47, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
If you were on the twitters around then (I was not, but it wasn't hard to piece the gist of this together), this was A Big Deal and a few people made complete fools of themselves by literally arguing that 2+2 didn't necessarily equal 4. But if you don't think a couple weeks of social media drama and a handful of people saying what were admittedly fantastically stupid things about math is worth an article... then it's fine for it to remain unwritten. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 04:42, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
But you are also running with the assumption that these tweets were authentic reflections of the poster's views and were not, in fact, the result of sockpuppet accounts deciding to troll a bit. How do we even measure what is a "big deal" on Twitter? Every little element in the set of trending Twitter topics is not itself a part of the set of culturally relevant events. Do you know how small the percentage of the population who regularly post on Twitter is? - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 05:31, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
I remember being presented with (only) a headline screenshot saying the sex offender registry was homophobic once. I looked up the article and it was about how courts put LGBT sex offenders on the registry more often than they do straight sex offenders (e.g. actual rapists), and how they don't want to "ruin a good boy's life" (something to that effect). I genuinely did not know this was a problem until I decided to look it up after seeing the headline (I don't agree that the root problem is "the sex offender registry is homophobic", but, the discrepancy is a problem). I know sex offender registries are often weaponized against prostitutes and their partners where sex work is criminalized, too. It's the kind of thing you may have never thought to be happening until someone brings it up. Or, it was for me at least. Chillpilled (talk) 05:58, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
This whole "math is racist" controversy smells like a rat. Some random professor says something stupid like "math is racist". Then conservatives have a huge meltdown over "wokeness" and use this as proof that leftist are "loony and out of control". Conservatives then use this as bait to goad voters to vote against their best interests at the next election. It was the same when conservatives started screeching that the word "American" was being banned at Stanford only to discover that it was simply from a style guide sheet. They wanted people to say "US citizen" instead of "American" to avoid confusion between the USA and the continent of America. There is tons of conservative rage bait all over Twitter mainly from Murdoch cesspools (New York Post, Daily Mail, the Sun etc) and other far right sites usually by some people (who might or might not consider themselves on the left or at least liberal) who say stupid shit. Usually we never get to hear from these people because people use to just ignore these things. But we now live in the age of the internet where every single fucking opinion needs to be heard. Conservatives will believe in any dumb shit if its continues to make them feel outrage especially when it involves young people. Don't fall for it. Leave your outrage for shit that's actually important like actual injustice taking place. Ψ (talk) 06:09, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
Pedantic point of the day; the Daily Mail isn't owned by that ancient Auzzie leech, it's held by Rothermere. Oh, and simple answer; nutpicking. If it's not some very fringe [and small] group of idiots being idiotic [qv: 'woke trying to put paedophiles into LGBT!'] it's something/one being taken way out of context and/or missing critical details ['woke hospital bosses orders medical staff not to ask anyone's names!' (reality; an unofficial poster politely reminds them to try to avoid deadnaming of trans patients)]. Then circular reporting kicks in, increasing it's legitimacy by repitition by the same old crappy suspects. If lucky, then the respectable media gets suckered into covering it, sometimes with the flimy justification that while they know it's shit, the manufactroversy has gotten too big to leave uncovered.
This works for two reasons. Most people don't fact-check nor care enough to really remember it. Most propaganda is subconscious in nature; a constant dripping of water on stone, the ubiquitous advertising billboards which your mind has learned to 'filter out' [just ask anyone who's spent any amount of time in a dictatorship like say China]. But they still work because the mind still registers a little bit each time and that builds up; for example most Soviets didn't buy the individual propagandic claims but via osmosis they'd bought the 'mood music' that the system as a whole is okay. This happens all the time, for different things; and 'woke' is currently one of them. KarmaPolice (talk) 09:10, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
Yeah, your right the Daily Mail is not run by Murdoch but some other sleazy wanker. But it's all the same. The whole point of these newspaper existence is to create as much rage in their middle to old aged readers as possible. These newspaper are practically junk food for the brain and probably makes you more stupider after reading it. BTW, do you know that English Wikipedia bans the Daily Mail as a news source because how absolutely shite it is? Ψ (talk) 10:28, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
Eh, it's more complex than that [at least in the UK]. Media like the Mail are designed around and for Conservative interests. They mainly do this by promoting the fiction that the UK is a 'naturally conservative' country and encouraging petite bourgeois dreams/viewpoints [individualistic materialism, mild anti-intellectialism, neo/xenophobia and an strong reverence for anything of the status quo]. I mean, it's all shit, but different gradients of shit - traditionally at least the Torygraph would keep the crap out of their factual reportage while I'm not sure the Express knows what that is. [The Marxist within me cannot help but note this is due to the British class system; my rule of thumb is that the 'higher' the target demographic is on the pyramid, the better factual reporting they have].
And yes, I know the Daily Mail's tussle with WP. However, we need to remember that the 'print' DM and 'online' DM is in fact two different beasts, with different heads, target consumers and so on. They do share a lot of raw reportage etc, but the Mail(s) also share this with the freesheet Metro [which I'd call mildly socally liberal and perhaps a better barometer of the UK's 'political centre'.] KarmaPolice (talk) 12:27, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
I would also call the printed version also quite shit, though I dunno, maybe they got better since I was last in the UK. Ψ (talk) 12:54, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
Murdoch's current tabloid in the UK is The Sun, which has similar ragebait shit as the Daily Mail does, and is also a "banned" source at Wikipedia. (He also owned another one called News of the World, but this closed due to the rag being very naughty boys.Wikipedia) Curiously enough, Murdoch's srs/highbrow UK-owned paper is The Times, which I think is perceived as not quite as reactionary as the "Torygraph" in the UK.
It's sort of a similar pairing to Murdoch's US paper lineup, where the ragebait tabloid New York Post is paired with the more srs/highbrow (if you ignore the spittle in the editorial section) Wall Street Journal. BobJohnson (talk) 15:01, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
Except the UK and American newspaper systems is still rather different; the Scum is for sale over the whole UK [save perhaps Liverpool] while the NY Post is not really easily had outside it's namesake. The Times/WSJ overlap is stronger; as the latter is a newspaper of record and one of the few which could be seen as a 'national' paper. From what I judge from The Times is that the leech has been relatively careful in interfering with it; as a paper 'the ruling class' [traditionally] reads I suspect he values it more in influence than simple readership/profit numbers [which means it cannot report crap, at least not in the news sections]. From the copies I've seen recently, the main difference between that and the Telegraph is that The Times often has opinion/letters from people who are at least worth listening to, even if you don't agree with them.
I would personally rate the reliability of the printed Mail a bit better than the online Mail, mainly due to the simple reason the former has to be more careful ie libel, reputation etc because you can't memoryhole some 800k of printed papers easily, but can with a webpage. As I've said before, the Express has long not cared about 'reputation'; in fact it's crappy reporting and dementia-like obsessions with crap like 'wonder cures', house prices, Brexit and Princess Diana have been around so long now it's a running joke. KarmaPolice (talk) 20:23, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Funny how a troll post is actually producing good discussion. Personally, as an outsider, I'd never put the British media on the same level as the American media. Of course, The Sun, the Daily Heil and others are garbage, but there is still The Guardian, BBC, The Economist, FT and even The Times. They do blunder a lot (see our transphobia sections on each of these outlets, for instance). But not as much as the American press. You can disagree with them in many instances, but they usually have a point. GeeJayKWhere all evil dwells Where every lie is true 20:34, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

Ask me anything about philosophy.

I am by no means particularly authoritative on the subject but I start my masters program in philosophy next week and will be working as a TA. I guess that puts me in the camp for being knowledgable enough for grad school. I really like talking philosophy and just want an excuse to explain concepts and answer people’s questions. My general areas of interest and what I am most educated in is philosophy of science, logic, and epistemology - so I am going to be relatively more reliable on those subjects. Ancient philosophy is a weakness for me, and I know jack shit about medieval philosophy, and philosophy within more culturally eastern traditions but I may still be able to point you to academic sources regardless so ask away. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 22:10, 28 August 2023 (UTC)

Something up your alley, I've wondered about the Marxist positions on epistemology and scientific fact. How we figure out truth, and how their views might align or differ to other people. I didn't find much about it a few years ago. Chillpilled (talk) 23:35, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
My favourite moral dilemma: you come across a planet, it is filled with unintelligent (or barely intelligent) yet sensitive creatures who suffer terribly, almost all the time due to a very strange evolution with an internal structure (akin to DNA) so complex, it cannot be altered in any conceivable way that would end their suffering. Due to their strange nature, the likelihood of them reaching any future intelligence is a google to one (so basically won't happen). The planet is far from any other inhabited planet, does not make up any part of interstellar relations, trade, resources or industry. It is a planet of endless suffering, with a likely future of more endless suffering. Flinging anything at all into the planets atmosphere at the speed of light, will set it ablaze and destroy all life on the planet (land, earth and below). Quick, and a lot less painful than their every day existence. Would you do it? Why? I've always found the answers to this question very fascinating. The more detailed the reply, the more interesting.
Also found philosophical approaches to the fermi paradox extremely interesting. Any thoughts on the utility of the fermi paradox and if we could qualify the answers?
Also, curious what your position is on mind/brain identity theory vs. qualia (or some other position). ShabiDOO 00:18, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
So for @Chillpilled I think why you may struggle to find stuff on the topic is because Marx himself wasn’t all that interested in epistemology. His writings were primarily motivated by the dominant classical economics of his time, Hegel, and the various young Hegelians and political thinkers writing in his time in response to the conditions that resulted from industrial revolution.
Which is why a lot of his works are often responses to other thinkers, especially those in Prussia and Germany at the time. He dedicated entire works to simply critique. Marx didn’t seem to care too deeply about metaphysics or epistemology. Though I think he genuinely took himself in developing his theory of historical materialism as acting in correction of Hegel who seemed to think the cultural zeitgeist and the dominant discourse of a given time period shaped history. Marx rejected that as he thought human societies were shaped more so in how they utilized natural resources, technology, and physical labour. The “productive power” so to speak.
The man himself didn’t really provide a genuine philosophy of science or how to define it but to be fair philosophy of science wouldn’t become a mature discipline of its own until about a century later. Engels did however write extensively about how strongly he felt that what Marx was doing for economics was what Darwin was doing to explain the diversity of life. He genuinely did think what Marx was doing was a kind of science, as many political economists before and after thought of themselves as doing as well.
Engels went out of his was to term what Marx was doing as “scientific socialism” contrasting him with thinkers he thought to be “utopian socialists” (some of whom identified as such). The distinction was that utopian socialists would base their theories on a preconceived moralistic theory or personal ideal to what they felt was the best way to organize society. Marx on the other hand was trying to predict how the properties of capitalism materialistically conflict with one another creating what he called “contradictions”. These contradictions were supposed to inevitably lead to capitalism’s collapse due to its own inherent instability, or workers themselves would inevitably revolt due to the intolerable conditions that would be produced by capitalism’s contradictions.
In the sense that Marxists use Marxist theory to analyze science, the only ones I know of are in passing interacting with Marxists, and one example used by Charles Mills in his essay on white ignorance. With the former I seen Marxists use the concepts of base and superstructure to argue that the dominant mode of production would shape the dominant ideas of a given time period. This would lead to capitalism shaping the media landscape and Overton window of acceptable political ideas being largely favourable to capitalist interests. Scientists would not be immune to this and so the degree to which they function publicly in the communication and pursuit of science will inevitably come to bias their attitudes. Some truth to this maybe, but taken too far we get concepts like “bourgeois science” which lead to lysenkoism being adopted in the soviet union.
The other example comes from Charles Mills writing about race making an analogy to class. He argues that “ignorance” can be deliberately and systematically constructed by those in positions of power in the hopes of maintaining certain social hierarchies even if not done explicitly. His major focus in his essay “White ignorance” is mostly focused on how white supremacy white washes the teaching of history, and denies objective facts about the realities of racism in America from being widely known, or simply denying black and indigenous people their place to provide evidence for their claims under the threat of racialized violence. He takes it as fact that a similar form of systematic ignorance exists as it relates to class through the social hierarchy between the bourgeois and the proletariat. Just as how the proletariat can be subject to “false consciousness” so to can non-white people be subject to white ignorance. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 00:59, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
I was aware of a lot of this already, though I expect others here wouldn't be. Marx himself actually sent copies of his own works to Darwin (which Darwin never bothered to read, and I don't think he ever responded to Marx, either). Another interesting overlap is that Marx had been influenced by some of the writings of Charles Babbage, father of computers (particularly Babbage's economic writings). I was asking the question pretty broadly, inclusive of other leaders like Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin, Luxemburg, etc. I guess Einstein was an influential pro-Soviet socialist, too. I think he had some to say on the crossover between science and socialism, though I don't remember what. Chillpilled (talk) 01:39, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
@Shabidoo Personally I am probably not the best for this question as I am a moral nihilistWikipedia but I can assess what the major normative theories would likely conclude. The utilitarians would likely argue we are morally obligated to destroy this life unless we can determine some way that keeping them alive would be more beneficial to some larger population. Kantian Moral Law probably wouldn’t extend the principle of humanity to such an alien race, so it would be fair game. The virtue theorists would probably feel that acting mercifully is a virtue and putting something out of its misery when it cannot do so itself is the virtuous thing to do.
But, I can see the argument that we shouldn’t interfere with life on other planets for concerns related to justifying a mentality of intergalactic colonialism, but I don’t know how much weight that argument would hold if by the thought experiment it was a known fact these alien creatures were suffering. Still one could say that it would be an imposition of human cultural values onto an alien life.
When it cones to the fermi paradox I probably on the more pessimistic side of things I don’t think intelligent alien life if it were to exist would ever be accessible to us. Distances would be too vast and they may be so vastly different to ourselves for any hope in communication. The paradox seems to suggest to me that we may genuinely be alone in the observable universe, or at the very least alien life doesn’t exist in a way we can readily detect with our current technology. I am completely comfortable with that.
Another thing that bothers me in particular is the assumption that intelligent alien life must exist or must have a high probability of existing. My limited understanding of probability pushes me into the conclusion that the sample space is too indeterminable to make meaningful judgements in that regard. We only have a single example in the whole universe that we know of as intelligent life and that is ourselves.
In regards to qaulia I am of the current mindset that “qaule” if conceptualized as this ineffable, wholly individual, and private component to conscious experience, then it is entirely indeterminable in referent so as to know that when we speak of it were genuinely referring to the same kind of “object”. It falls into the trap of Wittgenstein’s private language argument that determines that wholly private objects only accessible to single individuals can’t be referred to in language. On that basis I don’t think we have the justification to take that qualia definitely exists. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 01:45, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
After looking it up I think the Darwin/Marx direct interaction may have been a myth. Chillpilled (talk) 01:47, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
@Shabidoo, this is a nitpicky, but "…internal structure (akin to DNA) so complex, it cannot be altered in any conceivable way…" sounds like irreducible complexity. Also "Flinging anything at all into the planets atmosphere at the speed of light…": anything at all? How about photons? Bongolian (talk) 01:56, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
Yeah that is very nitpicky. I liked sortadumb's approach which was answering it through various moral systems (though wouldn't have minded hearing their own take). Originally: in order to change the beings, you'd have to individually change every single one of them and they would be changed to such an extend (in order not to suffer) that they would be a wholly unrecognisable and a new form of life (in which case you might as well destroy the life on the planet and just create some new artificial life). As for firing something into the atmosphere at the speed of light, yes, it would have to be bigger than a photon and how big it is would depend on the planet and its atmosphere, none the less, it would be fairly easy to destroy all life on a defenceless planet with a variety of approaches (some more sinister). While this moral dilemma is very specific and dependent on a large number of specifics (especially considering we don't even know for certain there is life in other solar systems), we have all dealt with equally complex problems, where coming up with an answer is challenging (or for some could be dependent on a moral system or instinctual reaction). Even within moral systems there could be very different answers. Having said all of that, I'm always fascinated by people's reactions, including the reaction to nitpick or even get annoyed and call moral dilemmas stupid and a waste of time :) which is way more common than you'd think. Alas, there is no obligation to participate if one doesn't want to. ShabiDOO 12:28, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
I guess my take would probably be to destroy the planets life since I approach ethics in a kind of coherentist way. It would only be consistent to what I think we should do in the case of other non-human animals. Though I guess alien life wouldn’t constitute an “animal” technically, but I don’t see a relevant difference regardless. The most relevant thing to me is that they are sentient and non-sapient beings who are suffering. I think in that case it would be permissible to engage in this sort of planet-wide euthanasia. I would open to the possible objections that this would be akin to genocide but I think there are also morally relevant differences in this case. - Only Sort of Dumb (talk) 23:55, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

Can a person own a thing? Can a person own a place? Many non-human animals exhibit territorial nature (i.e. cats or dogs) or are posessive of items they find (i.e. many birds keep trinkets in their nests); the psychological quirk of ownership is not a uniquely human idiosyncrasy.

When we take a step back though, the concept of ownership quickly becomes absurd. A monkey is born into the world, walks onto a hill, cuts down some plants, and assembles a box out of the cut down plants. Now suddenly the monkey is "deserves" to have a say over the hill and its path forward just because they built a box out of plants on it? One might say the monkey owns the box on it, but do they? The plants were not theirs. If I take parts out of someone's car and build a new car, few would argue that the new car deserves to be mine. One might argue that the plants were not owned already, but why not? Why can't plants own things? Why not animals already living on the hill? Why can't I own the car I made out of the parts I took out of your car?

The concept of ownership seems incredibly arbitrary, yet people are extremely vitriolic about maintaining their ownership of things. This isnt even mentioning how a collective can own things: i.e. corporations, governments, or even something as abstract as a culture or people group.

What are some philosophical perspectives on this? I understand that there are strong evolutionary and personal advantages to "playing along" with the concept of ownership, but I'm curious about what the philosophy aisle has to say about it. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 13:37, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

I'm not OSD, but Marxists distinguish between personal and private property. Personal property is your items of everyday use. You're not exploiting anyone by using your toothbrush. Private property is real estate, basically, rooted in the violent closure of the commons and the seizure of land from the indigenous and perpetuated through inherently unequal and exploitative landlord/tenant relationships. Mutualists distinguish between titled property and what they call "occupancy and use," this neatly sidesteps around the issue of landlordism while still allowing for, at least in theory, private property rights. With animals I suspect the issue becomes a little more complicated. Property itself is an inherently vague social construct anyways, and only matters insofar as people, or people hired by systems designed to enforce the interests of property holders (think law enforcement being used to break strikes or catch runaway slaves), are willing to enforce it. Hunter-gatherers and other cultures who tend to hold resources in common don't really gripe about "property" issues, as that's fundamentally a non-concept to them, or an artificiality imposed from above and without. Think the violent imposition of Western-style conceptions of private property on indigenous peoples that held land in common, ie the Dawes ActWikipedia as an example. Carthage (talk) 13:43, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
I had never heard of the Dawas act. I may have just been a victim of propaganda then, I never knew there were cultures which didn't have private land ownership. Sounds nice actually. MirrorIrorriM (talk) 20:25, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
However, I would argue that the above law simply changed the type of land ownership; the native tribes did 'own' the land, merely communally [rather than the 'individual proprietor' model dominant by the 19th]. The theft of said lands was almost identical to what happened in Europe with the 'enclosures', most graphically with the Scottish 'Highland Clearances' [which started when the Highland Chiefs were morphed into British Lords and the clan common land became the Lord's personal property]. KarmaPolice (talk) 13:33, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
Hence why I called it the Western model of property, ie private as opposed to communal. This is a process that continues to this day BTW (see the indigenous water protests, indigenous resistance to Canadian development of unceded land for an oil pipeline, and the forced assimilation of the nomadic San in Botswana to reify and enforce property rights that the nomadic San contest). Hence "property is theft," since it's rooted in acts of systemic land theft and enforced through systemic inequities that create and perpetuate an exploitative and coercive landlord/tenant and colonizer/colonized relationship. Carthage (talk) 23:18, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
When you ask can a person have a right, like to own a thing, have property rights, have the right to associate with others as one might see fit, or anything that might be construed as involving a right, you are either asking if there is a license (consent) that must be acquired from someone, that is, someone other than yourself must permit it; or you are asking, "do my principles allow doing this?". Well, the first possibility only instantiates the question for the assumed authority. Where did they get the right to give anything to you? The second case resolves itself if one has consistent principles, though I seldom see that happening. Sometimes when a college president confesses that their institution lies on property stolen from the native peoples of that area, I have heard the response "Why the heck don't you give it back then?" And I think something should be given back, though it just seems that those people think someone else is expected to do the giving.UncleKrampus (talk) 00:09, 1 September 2023 (UTC)

On Self Determinism and Committing to a Personal Truth

Real question, and I truly consider this as relevant, I think it's a deep question if done carefully. You are in front of shelf with every candy as a single piece, individually bagged (candy only, no ducking the candy parameter) ever invented or conceived, all ethically and morally sourced, priced fairly at buy one, get it for $0.00 There are no philosophical quandaries, no Omelas situation, quite the opposite. This is your one chance to just get a single piece of candy and enjoy it, no harm to anyone. All candy still exists after this choice, so you have no need to defend your choice as the last you'll ever take. You see what you want, close your eyes, reach out and grab the bag. When you open your eyes, what is in your hand? 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 04:04, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

To go first, peach ring. That's all it takes to answer the question. If you really need to change your mind, don't answer yet. 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 04:04, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
What day are you asking me? My immediate taste for food changes pretty much every day, if you asked me that question last night I'd be holding a Godiva chocolate and tonight I'd have come away with some Arethusa Farm ice cream (admittedly, more nights I'd be coming away with the latter; if you're not a Connecticut native and you see Arethusa ice cream or cheese in your area, you have to go for it). Same thing goes for almost everything else, my greatest desire at any one moment depends on what's going on around me and how recent, distant, or imminently attainable a desirable experience has been. And if it didn't change I'd be concerned, having a total one-track mind would make it impossible to handle basic functions of daily life; what's the most important thing at any given time has to depend on how all facets of your life interact with each other. (I still think this is a good question, I don't want to come off as sounding flippant) The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 04:54, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
I mean, I'm asking everybody right now. It's about that, for sure, but it's less consequential. You can still have all that. This is one choice with confidence no take backs, and it does not affect your future. You do not have to answer yet. 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 05:13, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
If you mean, "What's your favourite sweet?" then ask "What's your favourite sweet?" without couching it in 50 layers of philoso-babble. So I'll have a Mars bar, please. (By which I mean what the Americans call a Milky Way.) Fuck knows what horrible trolling trap I've just fallen into. Spud (talk) 06:07, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
I'm not really big on sweets or chocolate bars. I see the question posits a selection so vast that whatever I felt like at that time would probably not be in immediate range (or even view) anyway. So having no great preferences in the first place I would probably take the closest and most interesting thing I could see. Or nothing.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 06:42, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
It is in view, that's the special action of the candy shelf in this specific hypothetical. 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 04:10, 1 September 2023 (UTC)
Ok, so how is this "deep" or whatever stupid bullshit you want to portray it as if it's a no-cost, low-effort choice about whatever food you want? I'll take a s'mores please. Carthage (talk) 06:53, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
if the question bothers you that much, sheesh, a S'more thank you for contributing.. 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 04:23, 1 September 2023 (UTC)
To allay any concerns, I do not think I'm getting anything over on anyone who responds. I really appreciate the responses. I'm not trolling, I'm not trying to get anything over on you. I appreciate it. The question is still not 'what is your favorite candy' though. 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 06:00, 1 September 2023 (UTC)
Here is a joke. You are driving a bus. At the first stop, 12 people get on. At the second stop, 4 people get off and 2 people get on. At the third stop, 10 people get off and 4 people get on. At the fourth stop 2 people get off and they are really upset about it. 1 person gets on. At the fifth stop, 2 people get on. At the sixth stop, everybody gets off and they are all upset for the same reason. What color is the bus driver's hair? 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 06:27, 1 September 2023 (UTC)
I guess it's on me to respond at this point. My answer, peach ring, is something I came to by really practicing a single inconsequential question. Not everything is as tough as picking a piece of candy, but if you boil it all down to the parameters, it can be. Juggling pragmatism, utilitarianism, realism, existentialism, nihilism, rationalism, and absurdism, it's important to sometimes ask yourself what you believe is true. I can't say that my answer will always be peach ring, but For the foreseeable future, if the question is asked, the candy in my hand is a peach ring. And I'm happy and confident with that. I don't even like sweets. 2600:8804:500:FE90:D4A7:9D10:5438:46E8 (talk) 04:06, 2 September 2023 (UTC)

Another coup in Africa

A snap report to something that just happened today. A coup d'état broke out in Gabon as longtime "president" Ali Bongo Ondimba (though he's more like a dictator due to his iron-grip rule and him being handpicked to succeed his father.) was deposed by the military after they refused to acknowledge his re-election. (though to be honest, that election wasn't free or fair at all, but still, a military coup and military rule isn't much better.).

This is just the latest coup in Africa since the beginning of the 2020s. First there was Mali, then Guinea, then Burkina Faso, then Niger, and now Gabon. You may have noticed that all these countries the coups took place in were formerly occupied by France as colonies. TheEternalOutsider (talk) 19:36, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

I see your point, but there was also a coup in Sudan in 2021, a country that is not a a former French colony. Many other countries, like São Tomé e Príncipe, also saw coup attempts. ::I think saying that coups happened in these countries because of the French colonization (I'm not sure if you said that) is not a very good argument. Kinda like saying that they happened because those countries are located on West Africa. GeeJayKWhere all evil dwells Where every lie is true 21:18, 30 August 2023 (UTC)
More notable is the fact that all of the states named are either in or near to the Sahel, which is becoming totally fucked due to climate change. States which were always pretty fragile are becoming so weakened many are losing their ability to perform base functions; ie food/water/security. And as the 'liferaft' supplies dwindle, the survivors fight ever-more bitterly for what supplies are left. The 'China' finger needs to be pointed too; Beijing's influence/power has grown majorly in all African nations in the last two decades, and they're a very self-interested presence and they naturally don't give a shit over things like 'democracy' or even simple competent rule. KarmaPolice (talk) 08:10, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
I understand just how severe the Africa situation can be at times and my initial comment was just to start a conversation up. Yet also, since those countries' economies are so small and the resources there are so limited, not many people bat an eye anyway. (As for geography, the Sahel is such an unlucky place for a country to be located. (Gabon is in Central Africa and located on the doorstep of the Congo Rainforest, however.)) TheEternalOutsider (talk) 11:10, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
I mean, your original point is not devoid of worth; when it comes down to decolonising, the French were not particulary skilled at building democratic structures which survived intact [I guess the winners are perhaps the Brits, and even then their record was kinda shit] and it's fairly well-known that once a coup has happened, other coups become more likely [even if not for many years]. And yeah, Gabon is further south, I suspected as much but couldn't be arsed to actually look at an atlas. I'll admit, part of my snarky tone above was simply down to me being a bit pissed off that most of us aren't aware that climate change is fucking up whole nations now. KarmaPolice (talk) 21:39, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
For environmental purposes Gabon is about as opposite the Sahel as can be imagined, it's enormously forested and wet. But the problem of a tiny elite lording over everyone (which was especially a problem in Africa even before Europeans showed up) is about the same. Mobutu managed about the same thing in a similar (biosphere) environment, so it's hardly unprecedented there too. (Fun fact, one of the biggest prizes for Rwandan fighters in the eastern part of what was then called Zaire was Mobutu's diapers, since his prostate problems made him incontinent; couldn't have happened to a nicer guy) The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 02:05, 3 September 2023 (UTC)

Found out recently RationalWiki was actually created by aliens.

Inconsistences in Jesus' crucifixion?

I asked this in a Talk article, but it's clearly better here: it was a long ago and I have do not remember the details, but I have seen described on skeptic sites an as inconsistence that had the Mosaic law been followed, Jesus should have been lapidated instead of crucified, and Romans (which would not have allowed the former execution anyways) would not have cared about what Jews had to say of Jesus except if the latter had been some sort of for example leader rebelling against Roman occupation (others claim traces of that existing (texts having been redacted since then?) when Romans go to capture Jesus and the disciples have swords ready to defend). Am I missing something? Panzerfaust (talk) 17:39, 28 August 2023 (UTC)

The most solid elements of Jesus historicity are widely seen as his baptism by John the Baptist, and the crucifixion itself, due to the existence of multiple sources for affirming such. However, for the minute details why the Romans executed Jesus, well, aside from the Bible, as far as I know the details are rather slim. Again, as far as I can tell, the best guess of scholars was that he was executed by the Romans for sedition or some other political crime (eg Jesus was an "enemy of the state"). Crucifixion was not typically used for ordinary criminals in Rome (which means that the "thieves" Jesus was crucified with in certain parts of the Bible were probably more like a pirate or bandit, assuming that story has any truth in it). I would frankly say that if the details in the Bible actually do suggest lapidation instead of crucifixion, it is probably more like "some details" are missing from the Biblical account than the other way around. BobJohnson (talk) 19:37, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
I mean, I think easily the biggest inconsistency in the crucifixion story is the idea that the Romans needed to get their arms twisted to kill Jesus. Revolverman (talk) 19:47, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
The Romans were very paranoid of rebellion in Judea, so I doubt they would have had qualms about crucifying a man who's preaching a radical theology in a volatile region, is getting a lot of followers, and causing an uproar among the local populace. I've been of the opinion that the "hesitant Roman rulers" part of the story was more of a political reinterpretation of events in order to have the Romans' role in the killing of the messiah downplayed and blamed on the jews, especially when the church became an institution of the empire and had a solid reason to not sully its legitimacy. Maybe that's just enlightenment era, anti-catholic propaganda talking though.-Ryan1257 (talk) 20:52, 28 August 2023 (UTC)
"The most solid elements of Jesus historicity are widely seen as his baptism by John the Baptist, and the crucifixion itself, due to the existence of multiple sources for affirming such." Apart from the bible stories themselves - what are these multiple sources?Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 06:54, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
It's in the sources for the historicity of JesusWikipedia Wiki article. The crucifixion event is probably the one single event where some significant non-Christian sources actually directly mention it. (Most notably Flavius Josephus and Tacitus -- the later a very unsympathetic to Christians account, and a few others of varying historical interest as well).
For the baptism (Baptism of JesusWikipedia), sources are thinner. Flavius Josephus also mentioned John the Baptist, but not the Jesus baptism specifically. Per the Wiki article on the baptism, scholars seem to see this story as accurate based on this as well as on account that, in their view, there would be no reason to actually invent this story ("criterion of embarrassment").
Information from that far back always has a higher degree of uncertainty (and as noted in the Wiki articles, nothing is "rock solid" and there is plenty of dispute of authenticity of some of the sources to various degrees). A lot of the rest of the Jesus Bible stories are on much shakier historical grounds (including the nitty-gritty details from the Bible on the crucifixion / trial / etc. like "sympathetic Pontius Pilate"). But I don't think it's a stretch to conceive that a rabble-rousin' preacher who was leading an apocalyptic mysticism-tinged religious cult of significant size would be seen as a danger to the Roman state and therefore necessary to crucify. It's probably the "most solid" part of the historical Christ story. BobJohnson (talk) 14:15, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
Our own website has various comments about non-biblical sources which largely dismiss them. Even if the vague alleged Josephus account which may refer to the crucifixion were accepted, I guess that you are going to walk back the statement that the most "solid elements of Jesus historicity are widely seen as his baptism by John the Baptist ..." - as there is literally nothing you have provided which even marginally supports that the baptism claim. On the other hand, it may well be true that this unsubstantiated claim is the most sold thing Christians have.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 15:00, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
That article overwhelmingly cites Richard Carrier, who is seen as a fringe Christ mythicist by most scholars. Carthage (talk) 15:20, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
Both the baptism and the crucifixion are seen as solid by current scholarly consensus, but the reasoning is different for both; unfortunately since I focused on the crucifixion, such is unclear in the first statement. So apologies for this.
The "Christ myth theory" is one big area where certain Rationalwiki articles lean on the "New Atheism" dismissive angle way too hard IMHO. In general, Christ myth theory is seen as fringe by scholars. Now, there is obviously a lot of vagueness on what really happened here due to the vagueness of the historical record of the time; documentation is sparse. But it's worse the further back you go (especially if you aren't some Important King). The little we have on Jesus though is better than the barely nothing on other "mystical figures" like Buddha (though I think there is more information on later "mystical figures" like Muhammad then there is on Jesus). I think some of the RW articles "overplay their hand", so to speak.
Tellingly to me, the passage considered most authentic from Josephus concerns Jesus's brother JamesWikipedia and his stoning by Ananus ben AnanusWikipedia (High Priest of Israel in Judea at the time, and a far more notable figure in those days). The passage directly concerning Jesus is considered less authentic in current form, though there seems to be consensus that Josephus probably mentioned his name in a more neutral, passing way. There's a lot of other minor figures and tales in the Antiquities of the Jews (many of which aren't even notable for Wikipedia articles, let alone for a religion). Yet I haven't read anything that suggests all Josephus wrote is complete bullshit, and he did document some major events of the time. So I think it's more convincing to say "Jesus existed, but the details may have been way different" then to say that he didn't exist at all, he may have been just a relatively minor rabble rousing apocalyptic mystical priest or something. It's not like this doesn't suggest that there is a lot of mythos in the Biblical account. The fact that Jesus had brothers and sisters for instance already causes problems with that "perpetual virgin Mary" angle some churches have (or even the "virgin birth" itself depending on how one arranges the "family tree".)
In modern times, there exists many figures for which mythos or tall tales have developed, where we also actually have a pretty good record of the real person in real life. That unfortunately is something we do not have for most of the religious figures of old. It does however show how such can develop. Wouldn't surprise me if the "real story" is similar for all these so-called religious deity figures, though no one will ever know for sure. BobJohnson (talk) 16:59, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
I largely agree with what you say here. I took (and take) issue with your first statement "The most solid elements of Jesus historicity are widely seen as his baptism by John the Baptist, and the crucifixion itself, due to the existence of multiple sources for affirming such." There are certainly not "multiple sources" affirming his baptism, and apart from the somewhat ambiguous Josephus reference, there are not for the crucifixion either. As far as the baptism is concerned there are those who maintain that John and Jesus were contemporaneous and then follow some logic to maintain that the biblical story is possible. But to call this a "solid element" is overstating the case.Bob"Life is short and (insert adjective)" 17:51, 29 August 2023 (UTC)
An Armenian monk mentions "Muhammad's Arabs" in one inscription, if you want a roughly contemporaneous attestation of Muhammad's existence. Likewise, an example of a well-established historical figure still having tall-tales and myths told about them is George Washington. We even know how many of these myths spread in the first place: disregarding the myths spread as a result of the need for a founding national myth, others like young George and the cherry tree were spread as a result of a huckster spinning yarns to make a quick buck. Notice the two are not mutually exclusive, but that's neither here not there. Carthage (talk) 17:04, 29 August 2023 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────There’s a massive problem with the “scholarly consensus” argument when it comes to biblical studies, of which the question of the historicity of Jesus is essentially a sub field: It’s overwhelmingly dominated by theologians and use the kind of evaluation criteria that would be laughed out of any field within actual history.

While I generally give a lot of credence to the scholarly consensus, this is one of the fields where that general rule of thumb should either not be used at all or be ring fenced with some serious caveats about the state of the field and the scholars within it.

I’m not always enamoured of Richard Carrier’s approaches (in particular, I find his application of probability math to questions of history to be an unnecessary exercise in “dressing things up in equations” that provides little new knowledge or insight into the actual issues), his outspoken criticism of the attempts within biblical studies to do historical research without adhering to standard historical methodology is pretty much on the money.

Biblical studies have provided a lot of interesting results in analysing the way the texts could’ve been created by using form criticism and similar “internal” textual analytical tools. However, these are simply not sufficient tools when addressing questions of historicity, which needs to go into broader topics, using “external” sources and evidence, as well as historical analogy. In that sense, the problem would be similar to any field of literary study trying to establish the historical veracity of the contents of key texts mainly through textual analysis of those texts themselves with little concern for other sources. ScepticWombat (talk) 15:42, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

I think these caveats are a worthwhile note, but from what I recall, most historians criticized Carrier, including Ancient Rome historians. Also, there are New Testament historian specialists that consider themselves atheist or agnostic (and who have criticized Carrier, too), so in theory "religious paradigm" should not get in the way of historical rigor for them, either. There are probably some Biblical scholars that "go too far", I wouldn't doubt that, but not all IMHO.
One problem I see with the "Christ myth" crowd is that IMHO they seem to demand exactness in sources that ancient history, quite simply, does not often provide. Socrates is the classic example of a similar figure (no contemporary reports, everything written down after the fact). Using Christ myth type picking-apart, the conclusion would be that Socrates "does not exist", instead of "there probably was a Socrates of some sort, but who knows what, and who knows what is actually from his hand and what was altered" (also the scholarly consensus for Socrates historicity if I recall). You don't have to embrace the whole Bible mythos to think that "hey, a couple Romans remembered a certain preacher named Christ being executed, so at least this part of the story probably isn't complete bullshit". Such is more evidence at any rate than the conjunction that a Christianity religion sprang from nothing. (How many times have we seen a religion or cult springing from nothing happen in modern times? There are exceptions, but most religions and cults I know of typically sprung from one charismatic figure, or maybe a few.) BobJohnson (talk) 20:48, 30 August 2023 (UTC)

As a side note, I think our article on the jesus myth theory is far, far, FAR too kind to it.A somebody. (talk) 04:15, 31 August 2023 (UTC)

I find a comparison of Jesus and Socrates to be fairly silly considering the vast difference in the kind of claims made for each (basically divine Messiah and prolific miracle maker vs. annoying social critic and founder of a certain school of thought).
The main issue is exactly what “mythicism” is considered to be. I find it hard to believe that any serious historian would consider anything like the New Testament depiction of Jesus to be historical in any meaningful sense of the word. Anyone doing anything even remotely close to what is being claimed in the New Testament would definitely have left traces in other sources, while the New Testament itself is essentially useless as a source of anything resembling hard, historical facts.
If the claim for Jesus’ historicity is the sort of “historical minimalist Jesus” who was some kind of charismatic preacher who was little noticed in his own time, but subsequently inspired the New Testament through the beliefs of his second and third (or even later) generations of followers, then that’s far more probable. But it’s anlso essentially unprovable and doesn’t really tell us anything about what, if any, information about this “historically minimalist Jesus” is trustworthy. I happen to agree that such “minimalism” is a more likely scenario than “completely mythical Jesus”, but that’s mainly because the former requires making fewer assumptions.
However, the gap between “historical minimalist Jesus” and “New Testament Jesus” is essentially not that different from that between the latter and “completely mythical Jesus” and it remains impossible to say which parts of the source material (if any) might actually depict this “real” Jesus. Hence, I don’t really see why anyone would take a particularly strong stance against mythicism on historical grounds, apart from considering it as being needlessly complicated. ScepticWombat (talk) 13:09, 3 September 2023 (UTC)
Another note on the Socrates/Jesus comparison: We mainly know of Socrates through Plato’s dialogues and to a lesser extent through Xenophon. So to make a case for “Socrates mythicism” we have to consider either that Plato too is mythical, or that he would use a fictional character as a keystone in his philosophical teachings. Now, we could go on and say that Plato and/or his writings were all invented by some later author and then spread from there. I don’t know of anyone who holds to this view, however.
If we then accept that Plato was a historical figure and his writings are indeed genuine, then the issue arises: Why would Plato invent Socrates solely as a “pedagogical device” and place him within the living memory of his immediate audience? Considering Plato’s highly literate audience (Athens high society) why don’t we have any sources mentioning this, which surely would be an obvious counter to Plato’s ideas?
Furthermore, it’s simply untrue that we don’t have any contemporary sources for Socrates, since Aristophanes satirised Socrates in The Clouds (to the consternation of Plato). Thus, to make a case for “mythical Socrates” we also have to consider Aristophanes’ play either a subsequent invention or somehow a contemporary satire linked to Plato’s “pedagogical but fictional Socrates” that also for some reason chooses to go along with the myth, again despite the audience definitely knowing the setting.
Contrast this with the sources for Jesus which are filled with completely historically unknown authors with no firm connections to any actual historical figures (which is basically what all of the New Testament amounts to), or a smidgeon of dubious mentions that are either far later (and usually pertains to Christians and their beliefs, rather than a historical Jesus), or, as is the case with the passages in Josephus, are extremely suspect. ScepticWombat (talk) 13:36, 3 September 2023 (UTC)
As for the "Plato an invention of later authors" this is suspect because of the influence Plato had on later thinkers and even religion. Neoplatonic thought has influences on Islamic and Christian philosophy and theology, for instance. Someone had to come up with the ideas in the first place, and Occam suggests that someone is Plato. We already have his texts. Any hypothetical Plato mythicist would also have to explain the roughly contemporaneous references to Plato in the historical record, including by his student Aristotle, and the fact that Plato's writing is largely internally consistent (ie penned by a single hand). This is the reason we consider Paul to be a historical figure, for instance. I know you're using it as a rhetorical tool, but I do think we should nip any potential Plato mythicism in the bud, or dispel any genuine doubts one may have. Carthage (talk) 12:18, 4 September 2023 (UTC)



Our local book store, besides being awesome, has a great sense of humor. A new specialty drink is proudly displayed among the other super sugary designer microbrew soft drinks. At the checkout counter they had one of these in a cooler, so I got one. It has a slight citrus flavor but resembles no natural flavor at all. And it has lots and lots of cane sugar in it.

Also, I just noticed that I recently passed my 11th year on RationalWiki. —cosmikdebris talk stalk 20:20, 1 September 2023 (UTC)

@Cosmikdebris I've sent you a card. Spud (talk) 02:12, 2 September 2023 (UTC)
This is hilarious, but is this new? According to Wikipedia it's been around since 2002. Carthage (talk) 12:08, 4 September 2023 (UTC)

New armoured “skeptic” vid dropped

And it’s fucking bizarre. I haven’t watched the entire video because who has 40+ minutes to go through this bullshit, but through skimming it’s basically talking about the “woke” agenda in film is a psyop by the CIA/KGB/people in power and that every time a movie gets panned for being “woke” it was on purpose to cause culture wars. Also this quote from the video made me fucking laugh.

“George Lucas did that [‘that’ being redeeming Anakin Skywalker for murdering kids by making him a force ghost] on purpose! Star Wars was ruined on purpose to push an agenda, to make child murderers look redeemable and nobody noticed.”

Also, apparently Guardians of Galaxy 2 promotes child trafficking because it has goofy jokes and it’s lighthearted in tone…? I guess Hanlon’s razor went to go fuck itself. Genuinely can’t tell if he actually believes all this bullshit or if he’s just grifting the conspiracy theory train. Whatever the case may be, it’s still fucking annoying that he pushes this bullshit.—WMS (talk) 12:09, 4 September 2023 (UTC)

"He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you." Carthage (talk) 12:12, 4 September 2023 (UTC)
I watch many movie review videos for language experience. Many on youtube are what you might call rightwing or implicitly racist maybe. This video is really typical of very many entertainment youtube videos, except for the nonspecific criticisms of what he thinks are woke (I think?) trends. This is not new.Zatoichi (talk) 18:31, 4 September 2023 (UTC)

Hi everyone, how is it going?