# RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive50

This is an archive page, last updated 13 February 2010. Please do not make edits to this page.
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## A poem for us all

Here you go. I think it is really fitting, giving all the L.J. shit that is going on. Enjoy. Tetronian you're clueless 13:13, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

## I will kill a puppy if my Rationalwikiwiki page is not updated!

http://rationalwikiwiki.org/wiki/Mustex --Mustex (talk) 16:02, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

Put whatever you think should be added/changed on the talk page there... ħuman 20:42, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
No need, it is now perfectly satisfactory. :) I should threaten to kill puppies more often (and I will happily admit to being an attention whore). Thanks whoever updated it (seriously, doing it myself would have been too whorish even for me).--Mustex (talk) 22:20, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
You're welcome. (and the AW bit was meant tongue in cheek). PsygremlinSnakk! 17:42, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

## UK General Election

So, us Brits. We like a nice, short general election period, the shorter the better. Not like your common-or-garden US election which seems to take 2 years from start to finish, and not leave much change from a trillion dollar bill.

We have an election coming up this summer, except you'd hardly know it yet. The press is full of speculation about the size the kicking that Labour is going to get, but no campagning has started yet. Except for this ill-advised, obviously airbrushed, and mercilessly lampooned billboard poster from the Tories. View the piss-taking ones here. Bondurant (talk) 16:29, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

You Brits have elections now? I thought the reason us Amurrikuns gave George III what for back in 1776 was cause you didn't get to elect nobody!
Seeing George III, I'm reminded that "The Madness of King George" was originally titled "The Madness of George III", but people in Hollywood kept asking what happened to the first 2 films. --PsygremlinSprich! 18:51, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
(Yeah, I know, Britain had a parliamentary democracy even then. But seriously, roughly when did the monarch become a figurehead and the PM the head of government?) MDB (talk) 16:39, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
With parliamentary and electoral reform throughout the 19th century, politicians came a lot more into the limelight than royalty, though the royal family was still a big thing back then. The Great Reform Acts of 1832 and 1864 (or is it '66? Been years since I've done history) changed enfranchisement quite severely. As for the election this summer, I remember the cancelled election in 2007 getting a shitload more press than this one. I feel awful for even thinking it, but I'd be less revolted by a Tory government as I once would've been given just how badly Brown's been doing. SJ Debaser 17:38, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
It wasn't democracy in 1776 - only men could vote (and only then if they owned land worth more than a certain amount), and the House of Lords could throw out any legislation they didn't like. So yeah, you were well rid of us really. Totnesmartin (talk) 17:56, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
So, who was the last monarch to have real power? Victoria? From my Yank perspective, I know her son Edward was most noted for screw-ups before becoming King, then everything I remember about British Royalty involves personal matters (the abdication, the variety of stories around Elizabeth's kids) or symbolic (the royal family refusing to leave London during the Blitz, for instance.) MDB (talk) 18:08, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
It was under George V that the veto power of the House of Lords was removed. This involved the King threatening to swamp the Lords with a large number of new peers so they would not veto the bill removing their veto power. ListenerXTalkerX 18:22, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
I know it's amazing that we have elections now. We even have things like the internet, Big Macs, automobiles, Lady Gaga and universal health care.
Still, there are daily reminders that the monarchy still has some symbolic significance in our lives. Her Maj's increasingly jowly face still appears on our money and stamps and our national anthem is all about her, not the country. She's still the person that all MPs (except for republicans like Sinn Fein) pledge allegiance to, still the head of the armed forces. James Bond still kills megalomaniacs for Queen and country. She still gets the best seat at the FA cup final if she wants it, and still lives in the biggest house in London. Bondurant (talk) 21:00, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
I hope Her Majesty becomes more like her own mother as she ages. The Queen Mum was one cool lady with a wonderful sense of humor. MDB (talk) 14:39, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
The Monarchy is a waste of space but if the alternative could be Bush or Reagan then it's worth it. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 14:45, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Or Berlusconi or Sarkozy or Putin, etc. Someone like me with an instinct that leans towards republicanism really struggles with the idea that the alternative could be even worse. Presidential elections often seem to be reduced to a cult of personality. Jeez, we could end up with Boris Johnson as our president. Bondurant (talk) 14:57, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Precisely! yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 14:59, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

## Bird is the word.

Helluva day today. I went out into town to get a book for college, and I come back home (yes, I am at home, yes, I am taking college classes) and there are birds in my chicken coop. That may not sound remarkable, but these birds were flying. Somehow, 15 birds had managed to get themselves stuck inside the coop, and I have no idea how they got in there. I open the door and try to shoo them out, no luck, they just fly back in. In the end, I have to grab them one by one and shove them out the door, the birds in question making loud bird noises the whole way.

Thinking I was finished, I go to leave... and there are three more birds in Melvin's (a rooster who is living alone due to violent tendencies) side of the coop. Fun times.</random blogging> Javasca₧ A sig not even he can predict! 18:15, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

Curious. What kinda birds we talking about? WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 18:17, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
Strange, last night I dreamed a bluejay got trapped in my kitchen. ħuman 20:48, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
They were common grackles. ĴάΛäšςǍ₰ do do da de do da de 23:32, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
The game is afoot! 174.79.10.130 (talk) 15:27, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

## Is this a gay-friendly saloon bar?

Is this saloon bar gay-friendly, or is it, as the name suggests, some kind of hick bar? LimpWrist (talk) 21:02, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

Opal's lounge is pretty gay, but I think she closed shop. This is about as gay is it gets. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 21:04, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
Well, in that case, give me a screwdriver! LimpWrist (talk) 21:05, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
....and there you go! — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 21:07, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, honey! LimpWrist (talk) 21:08, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
Yup, that there was pretty gay all right. Not that there is anything wrong with it. But mega-gay. That was so gay that every sailor in five miles just perked up their heads. It was so gay that cows around the world shivered in terror and anticipation of being made into chaps someday. Awesome.--(talk) 21:21, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
I think we welcome left-handed batsmen and women in comfortable shoes here. Grab yourself a Drambuie and chat about handbags! CrundyTalk nerdy to me 22:25, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
(ec) legal whorehouse. I know, but the spam it must go on --Swedmann (talk) 22:29, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
Drambuie is okay. But right now, I think I'll have a glass of chardonnay. And a salad! LimpWrist (talk) 00:54, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
This place has always been welcoming to me (though someone did take exception once to me making some word play about liking bears), and I'm about as gay as a football bat bought with a three dollar bill advertised on a commercial on Bravo. (Though not, as a character in Gaiman and Pratchett's Good Omens was described, "as gay as a tree full of monkeys of nitrous oxide". That was how a friend described himself, and he was, to be blunt, a flamboyant queen, and would not have objected to the term.) MDB (talk) 12:13, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

## AD (formerly TomMoore) for Bureaucrat

He's been on the site over eighteen months, contributes to on-mission articles, essays, debates & discussions, & seems relativeless sensible. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 01:36, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

### Goat

• He can have mine, it's in the shed out back being flogged. ħuman 02:05, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
• Don't you think we should get the whole Loya Jirga thing sorted before adding more? ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 10:28, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
• I think the reason for this was people wanted to put him on the LiveJournal nom nom list. ħuman 22:23, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

### Thanks

Thanks, y'all. Your confidence is much appreciated.--(talk) 09:58, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

## May I just say

I love Obama. His stimulus plan included the American Opportunity Tax Credit, which enabled me to get an extra \$1000 back in my tax refund. SirChuckBA product of Affirmative Action 07:03, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

Tax-cuts are all good and well when one is the beneficiary, but it is generally considered that we need a tax-and-spend policy at the moment, and in particular a tax-and-pay-down-the-national-debt policy. ListenerXTalkerX 07:18, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
On principle I agree with you, but this tax cut is so small, and affects such a limited group of people, I don't think it's really going to hurt anything... We're talking mere cells of the Tyrannosaurus Debt (anyone else remember Schoolhouse Rock?) SirChuckBI have very poor judgement 07:49, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Garrison Keillor reports that in 1960, tuition at the University of Minnesota was \$71 a quarter. It would probably be more cost-effective to restore that state of affairs than to bankroll tuition at private colleges. ListenerXTalkerX 07:57, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
While I do agree that we need to do something about making higher education more affordable, \$71/quarter seems way too low -- I'd say that's effectively free, considering the cost/benefit ratio. You need to have some kind of financial threshold so people don't go to college because they have nothing better to do. MDB (talk) 14:45, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
\$71 went a long way in '60. I'd call it affordable, not "free". Anyone got any links to cost of living data, or remember what, say, a cheap new car cost, or what a typical salary was back then? I remember bugs being \$1000 or so in the seventies... ħuman 22:31, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
US cost of living 1964 for ya! (and here's 1955 for comparison. Totnesmartin (talk) 00:23, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Well, I started work in 1962 (in the UK of course) at £7.10s/week: we were about £1:\$2 then so about \$15\$ per week. So \$71 'd be about 5 weeks pay - ish? yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 22:40, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Remember, this was when everyone in Britain used LSD. There were 12 pence to the shilling and 20 shilling to the pound. Toast was paid £7 10s/0d. Or 7 and-half pounds. Or 7 guineas and 3 shilling. And they delayed currency decimalisation for 100yrs or so because it would confuse the populous. CS Miller (talk) 22:59, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
"You need to have some kind of financial threshold so people don't go to college because they have nothing better to do." Would not the purpose of public universities be better served if, rather than educating those with the most ability to pay, they instead educated those with the most academic merit? There is your "threshold;" boot anyone who cannot make good grades. ListenerXTalkerX 03:31, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## Idiot bias?

Anyone who has tried to argue with Ken will eventually get how well Conservapedia does at Alexa as evidence that lots of people read Conservapedia and like it. He also taunts us about how poorly we do. Alexa works by tracking peoples internet viewing via a toolbar. The toolbar only works with Internet Explorer. We have a disproportionately large number of using Firefox compared to the internet at large and despite how many time we have tried to explain the to Ken he still insists on using it to measure our traffic. But recently I have been wondering if the reason we do so bad on it is that the only people with Alexa toolbars are idiots. To start with, who uses a third party toolbar anyway, you might as well invited people to install viruses on your computer. Recently they have started allowing reviews on Alexa and it is frightening stuff:

 WND is one of the few places one can go to get accurate news from a conservative perspective. While it definitely has a right-wing viewpoint, articles are supported with facts and when it speculates, it usually says so.Amazingly, this is the ONLY major news site that has regularly and accurately covered the Obama eligibility constitutional crisis, which doesn't say much for the other 99.999% of "news" outlets, including Fox, Newsmax and others. I am laughing now that the Obots are focusing on Fox as "Public Enemy Numer 1" when WND is far more dangerous in exposing them.— emaven - 5 stars
 One of the only sites out there that reports the truth. It's a must read site for every American. Only mental libs would not like WND.— anthonycedar - 5 stars
 a great website, concise, not to heavy on alarmist reporting, and clean.— Legacy Review - 5 stars
 9-11 was an Inside job. America is turning into a facsist dicatatorship police state. We are moving into a one world government.MSNBC IS PROTECTING THE ELITE GROUPS WHO WANT TO KILL US. MSNBC is Helping the criminals get away with murder, and helping enslave the world. They do not expose 911, they attack 911 truthers, the mass media supports 911, b/c they support there motivation which is a one world government.MSNBC are lying facsists.BOYCOTT THE COMPANIES OF THE NEW WORLD ORDER— Tom Johnson - 1 star
 even though some might be not true.. (most are) but helps a lot back when i was in school lol ns2forum*com— ddong2 - 5 stars

I am kind of glad we don't have these people viewing our site. - π 08:35, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

I can never understand why A) Someone would use a toolbar like that, B) Would use internet explorer, C) Would use Alexa as a benchmark for quality or D) Listen to Ken. Acei9 09:03, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm reworking the Liberal Style article, and Ken is singlehandedly providing a lot of rebuttals to the claim that attention seeking is a liberal trait. Thanks Ken! --Ask me about your mother 12:30, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
If everyone on RW installed the Alexa toolbar onto their copy of IE (everyone needs a copy of IE, even if they primarily use Opera or FF), it'd tip the scales quite dramatically, I think. So long as you then didn't go and visit CP at the same time... narchist 14:39, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I haven't had i.e. on any machine for over two years. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 15:02, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

System Requirements: Firefox: 3.0.4 - 3.6.* [1] -- Nx / talk 15:10, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

Didn't use to do that. - π 22:13, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
A bit off-topic but I don't understand what's wrong with the WP review other than grammar and stuff. The reviewer did not say they used it as a direct source for their studies only that it is useful for school work. I use it all the time to get background and pointers to more trustworthy sources on a given topic. Just the other day I used it to figure why the world government was using planes to spread neuro toxins via chemtrails. Me!Sheesh!Mine! 15:38, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Wait wait wait.... World Net Daily is "not to heavy on alarmist reporting"? That's like saying the Pope isn't too heavy on that whole Roman Catholicism thing! MDB (talk) 18:17, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

Just as an aside, while CP consistently gets more traffic than RW, and sometimes has spikes that dwarf us (hell, they've been mentioned on the telly), when I look at the last three months of "pageviews" our little blue line is higher than their little red line in 5 or 6 places. In other words, on some days RW gets more traffic reported to Alexa than CP does. ħuman 22:39, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

That usually happens when we get a delayed spike a few days after, when people want to know more what they saw they come here. - π 00:39, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## Pain delay

Last week: clearing rhododendron shrubs, chopping down willow hedge. Today: back pain. Why the delay? Totnesmartin (talk) 09:56, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

Usually takes overnight to kick in. I find that after I play my first cricket match of the season. I'm fine that evening but can barely walk the next day. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:43, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I could understand if i'd done the work yesterday, but it was last week. That's the puzzle. Should I add that I was once bedridden for three days after excessive air guitaring? Totnesmartin (talk) 10:51, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Oh sorry, didn't read that properly. Maybe you slept funny but you're blaming it on the hedge? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:57, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Maybe it's karmic punishment for writing last night's useless Bed article. Totnesmartin (talk) 14:34, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
You're weak. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 14:46, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Weak? Five years ago, I was a four stone apology; today, I am two separate gorillas! Totnesmartin (talk) 16:02, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

## HCM Over?

Just popped in to see whether the wiki is still in HCM. Is it, or did we finish with that? Fedhaji (Talk) 14:27, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

There's a lot of discussion on how to prevent HCM. I'd say it's going pretty well, and things are looking better right now then they have in a long time. --Ask me about your mother 14:28, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
HCM won't even kick off until the cabal is formed and attempts to impose itself upon the community. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 14:29, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Search for Loya Jirga and be amazed. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 14:30, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
We can elect a Super Cabal to keep an eye on the cabal. Turtles all the way down! --Ask me about your mother 14:31, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
We won't have cabals all the way, it eventually terminates with Colin. - π 23:30, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Haha, nice once Concernedresident. Personally I'm taking a minor wiki-break until we get things sorted out. It is fun to watch, though. Tetronian you're clueless 23:26, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Where is Colin? Šţěŗĭļė baby-sitter 00:55, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Judging by his contributions, he was here for the first few days, made a half arse attempt at returning twice and has never been seen again. Mind you he is still in email contact with TK, when TK is not fake signing as him that is. - π 01:06, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## Skins

Normally I view RW on a 24-inch monitor but having moved to a Toshiba netbook my screen space is much more limited - 1024 x 600. I'm using Firefox 3.6 on XP with the Santini compact skin. I now find the RW logo too large. So I wonder what tips people have for configuring viewing? ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 17:14, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

I'm on a netbook too. I use Chrome, which I find a little more compact than other browsers. And on several kinds of pages, I will tend to hit f11 to go full-screen, but that's rare. I can't say I ever had any problems with RW or its logo.--(talk) 17:21, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
The width of the logo seems to take up more space than the text which to my mind wastes space. Can I use a custom css to use a smaller version? Also it would be nice to have different settings on each computer but still have the same user ID. ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 17:28, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Modern skin seems to dispense with the logo. My main difficulty is the degeneration to one word per line on multi indented talk pages when on my phone. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 17:38, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Reducing the width of the logo won't help much, since the the sidebar will remain. You can remove the logo to move the sidebar up (hide p-logo with display:none and set padding-top of column-one to 0). You could also try the Chick skin. -- Nx / talk 17:43, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, the chick skin would go great with your cute netbook you little girl. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 17:50, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
It's more properly called the "Jack Chick skin." If you enter a word like "Catholic" or "porn" into the search box, then it just sends you to the page on Hell.--(talk) 17:55, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

## An Ethical Dilemna

I was wondering if the good people here at Rationalwiki could help me to sort out an ethical issue that I am having. I want to get a video game that I used to play 10 years or so ago. Problem is the game is no longer for sale anywhere (and I have looked everywhere). I note, however that the game is not abandonware and I read that the copyright owner (Lucas Arts) have specifically said that their games will not be abandonware. If it is impossible to purchase the game is it morally wrong to download it and play it? I understand the concept that piracy is theft because it rips off the people who worked on the product, but surely where the product is no longer for sale there is no issue. Thoughts? --DamoHi 22:45, 31 January 2010 (UTC)

Most of my music is downloaded, my movies and games so as far as I am concerned - download it from The Pirate Bay! Acei9 22:47, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
Ace, I think he knows how to do it, the issue is just whether it's moral. The answer is that if it's not abandonware, no, it's not moral. You will be infringing on their copyright and their right to sell their own work how they choose. I don't think many people will blame you, of course - witness above! - but the fact remains. What's the game - maybe we can help you find it for sale?--Tom Moorefiat justitia 22:49, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
(EC) I have a similar problem with the music sharing blogs - how do you square your conscience with illegally downloading old/deleted stuff, even if that's the only way to get it? My answer: buy something from the same artist/label/whatever - so they're getting something back at least. And deffo don't pass the game on. Totnesmartin (talk) 22:50, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
Have you (Damo) asked Lucas Arts? they might be able to assist. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 22:52, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
Ebay can house a lot of that kind of thing, from albums that you don't find anywhere to games no longer for sale. Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 22:54, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
Yes, it's moral. I fail to see how getting stuff from your friends would be immoral. --Swedmann (talk) 22:55, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
I try to buy 2nd hand original copies from Amazon or Ebay rather than download. Most games you can. Ethics and moral issues aside (if it has been abandoned by the original owner, and they have no interest in supporting it, then they have, in my eyes, surrendered their claim on it), you get documentation and the original media, for a lot less hassle and usually very modest amounts of money. -- 23:01, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for all the input guys. I hadn't considered going on Ebay (ours is called trademe) and picking it up. At the Lucas Arts website they have links to purchase their games but not to the one I want (Tie Fighter by the way). To add another piece of info I neglected to put in originally - Does it make a difference that I have already purchased the game, albeit 15 or so years ago, but no longer have it? DamoHi 23:21, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
About five bucks or so here.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 23:26, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
I don't think it's unethical in most cases, & certainly not for something that's been out for a decade & become unobtainable for regular purchase. If you buy a second-hand copy, the makers still aren't getting any profit from you, so you might just as well have downloaded it. Plus the people losing out aren't struggling artists: they're big corporations that accrue massive profits. Personally, I don't download pirated stuff, but only because I can't be bothered: it takes ages to load (movies anyway), & I get most of my DVDs & CDs very cheaply anyway, either new or second hand. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 00:01, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
I suppose it depends on the EULA, but it strikes me that once you purchase a piece of software (and never resold it) you have bought the right to use (one install of) it "forever" - doesn't matter what media you are getting the ones and zeros. Imagine if your original was corrupted, but you had a backup copy. The fact that you bought it properly once upon a time pretty much seals it from what I can see. As long as it wasn't a "limited time" license, of course. ħuman 00:29, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
The issue of ethics/morality is in some ways secondary to the legality. You may find some justification for doing it but are you ultimately breaking the law? And if so, what are the ethics/morality of doing that? You say that you once owned the game in which case Human's point is probably morally valid - provided that you did not sell or give away the game in the first place. The argument that buying a second-hand copy gives no revenue to the original producer so you might as well download it is specious because multiple copies of the original are being distributed rather than just one. Likewise saying that the money only goes to a big corporation - who happen to give jobs to little people and pay dividends to investors - is also morally unsound. Buying second hand is good because you then give some benefit to the original owner. ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 10:14, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

### this whole "Pirate Bay" thing

This is new to me. How likely is one to get caught if one downloads games/music from them? Would a proxy be wise? TheoryOfPractice (talk) 23:37, 31 January 2010 (UTC)

The risk is almost non extant for games and books. For movies it's marginally higher. For music it is upgraded to "slight risk." You cannot effectively use a proxy given the nature of torrenting. If you are concerned, use a closed tracker rather than an open one like Pirate's Bay.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 23:40, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
Also, you may want to use a Torrent client that allows packet encryption, so that your ISP can't tell what you are downloading/uploading. As a Linux user, I use the rather excellent Ktorrent, but check out this list for one that might work for you. Bondurant (talk) 10:03, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
I think there's some guides on using eMule to get safe servers from online lists and how to use protocol obfuscation as well. Google it. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:30, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

The pirates are out to get you. Piracy funds organised crime, terrorism, & sweaty fat guys with branding irons. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 18:58, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

### Another thought

I just thought, as far as the developers are concerned, if they are refusing to sell the game anymore (god knows why, they could host it on Steam for a cut of the profits) then what difference does it make if Damo illegally downloads it or buys a second hand copy from someone on fleaBay? They don't get any money from either, but they do get interest in a game franchise which they might resurrect one day and have an extra fan ready with the green on release day? What do you think? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:11, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

I used to download heaps of things from Pirate Bay, hell I once downloaded a whole OS. But one day I stopped and thought that all the excuses I had been using (that the developers make lots of money anyway, that it spreads the word), they were just excuses I was using to justify taking something that wasn't mine to take. I've got no problem with people who download torrents, most of my friends do, but I'd rather people accept it for what it is. In the end, it's easy and free, it's too much of a temptation. --Seantalk 20:57, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Hear, hear! If you're going to steal something (even if it's a digital theft), at least nut up and admit you are. Justifying it as though you're some sort of crusader for the little guy, or protesting TEH MAN, is laughable. Just be open: You're cheap, it's easy, and that's the way you are. --Irrational Atheist (talk) 21:01, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## The part where I talk about kitties being cute

So, I fled to my friends' house in Milwaukee to gather some much-needed sanity in my life for a few days. Long story short, they own 7 cats, all which they took in from animal shelters and all of them are fixed. Obviously, their entire house is the cats' domain. So I slept on their living room couch, and awoke this morning to all 7 of their cats curled up into a big ball of fur and sleeping on top of my chest. Needless to say, I wish I could've reached my camera, but that would've meant disturbing them. It was really cute, and, to me, an omen that, while things in my personal life are looking down and out, I have to cherish the little things that can brighten my day, if only until reality hits me in the face again. Punky Your mental puke relief 08:04, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

You're talking about cats.... YOU ARE CUR!!!!!!! (do you even know who that is?) That is too funny. Nothing like cute animal things to brighten your day. SirChuckBObama/Biden? 2012 08:37, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
On that same note, my mom sent me this picture a while back. She took it in the parking lot of her office building. SirChuckBCall the FBI 08:40, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
isn't he (she?) cute?
That is really cute Goonie. My ragdoll likes sleeping on me or the wife, and she's able to do this weird "log rolling" thing, so if you turn over she tippy-tippies along so she's still on top of you. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:59, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
We used to have a pair of mallards living under a shrub in the parking lot of my office (which is, oddly enough, not near anything resembling a large body of water -- the closest are a couple of miles away). I used to watch Mr. and Mrs. Mallard every morning, and was hoping we'd get to make way for ducklings eventually, but I think the groundskeepers must have disturbed the nest and they ducked out. MDB (talk) 12:15, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
(Rimshot) CrundyTalk nerdy to me 13:08, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
I am nothing if not an incorrigible punster. So please don't incorrige me. (and that was one of my lamer ones. Just ask me why I almost got a cheddar biscuit thrown at me at Red Lobster after I saw Star Wars: The Phantom Menace with some friends.) MDB (talk) 13:55, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
Why did you almost get a cheddar biscuit thrown at you at Red Lobster after you saw Star Wars: The Phantom Menace with some friends? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:53, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
We went to Red Lobster after the movie, and, as happens with a bunch of geeks, discussed the film. The question of how Anakin came to be such a good mechanic came up. Various theories were bandied about, and someone suggested that he was trained by Jabba the Hutt. I said, "yeah, but he used a computer simulation of engines! You know... a Jabba virtual machine." At which point my friend Brian almost threw a cheddar biscuit at me. I was so proud. (At another occasion, he almost hit me with a throw pillow for the phrase "contributing to the delinquency of a mynah".) MDB (talk) 16:11, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
No, the reason the biscuit was thrown was as divine retribution for watching TPM. --The Emperor Kneel before Zod! 01:58, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## 20 Years Ago Today

FW announced the unbanning of the ANC and the release of Morgan Freeman Nelson Mandela. Probably our (or my) generation's "Where were you when..." question. So where were you? I was at home, packing. Had to report for National Service (bloody typical, I was in the last intake ever!) the next day. --PsygremlinPraat! 17:53, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

I was in the saloon bar where you're supposed to be posting this. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 17:54, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
God, I just felt like Huw. Sorry. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk /

Block 17:54, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

Yeah, but you were funny. ħuman 00:40, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
I was in my car, in front of Safeway, listening to Maryland's late, lamented progressive rock station WHFS, when the DJ broke into programming, and, rather overcome with emotion, announced the news, and then played Free Nelson Mandela. MDB (talk) 18:13, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I was at home in NZ watching the telly. My fiancee however was looking on with wonder as her neighbours in Jo-Burg locked themselves in their panic rooms expecting society to collapse and for roaming gangs to kill all the whites. Acei9 21:35, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Nelson Mandela... and now the leader of South Africa just fathered his 20th child out of wedlock. Interesting trend.--talk 23:08, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
At least they got rid of the AIDS woo idiot. Totnesmartin (talk) 00:08, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Oddly, I don't really remember that one specifically. But I do have a B Globe front page from that era with three crazy headlines: Germany's reunion talk raising old fears; Soviets backing some surveillance flight plan; and... "Mandela seeks to reassure whites"... just checked, yeah, 2/13/1990. Those were wild and crazy times. ħuman 00:40, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
I was...not even born. Interesting. Tetronian you're clueless 03:16, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
At least we didn't ask "where were you when Jack Kennedy was assassinated". Maybe your parents weren't even born? ħuman 04:59, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
My previous "where were you when..." moment was hearing about the explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger, since I was too young for JFK. 9/11, of course, outpaced the Challenger explosion. And for a purely personal matter, I can remember exactly where I was when I learned my brother was dead. MDB (talk) 13:20, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
I was too young to appreciate the impact of Nelson Mandela 20 years ago, though I remember the news story. For both Challenger and 9/11 I was home sick from school/work in both instances. And MDB, that isn't something one would soon forget, and I'm sorry to hear that happened. Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 14:28, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## Kiva

Anyone else lending through Kiva? I just signed up and gave a few loans, but then noticed that:

• I get no interest on my investment (but wasn't expecting to, so don't really care)
• The field partner does charge interest, sometimes a horrific rate (e.g. one of my loans is rated at the equivalent of 46% APR!!)

This seems a bit fucked up, that people in poor countries pay obscene loan rates from my money, which I assumed would provide a good boost rather than potentially crippling credit to someone who might not be able to afford it if something goes wrong. Am I thinking about this all wrong? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 20:24, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

There's also zopa for person-to-person loans. CS Miller (talk) 21:29, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
See, that's how I pictured Kiva, only with a many-to-one architecture. The trouble is it's a many-to-broker-to-one architecture with the broker taking a fuckload of cash, when it isn't even their fucking capital going into the loan!! I wouldn't mind, but very few of the brokers (charging more than 40% APR let's not forget) don't offer "insurance" to the loaner if the loanee defaults. Who exactly wins here? The loanee gets a loan with shit interest rates, I risk losing my money for zero profit, and the broker gets an obscene amount of cash in interest. I think we know who the real winners are. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 21:41, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
You must not have gotten the memo. Kiva is for giving your money away so you can feel good about it. You're not supposed to look back. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 22:11, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, I feel like a twat now. I was thinking I was doing a really great favour to someone who really needed help. In actual fact I was just helping an overseas loan shark to make loads of cash. I feel raped. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 22:47, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
Does this help? yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 22:51, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm given to understand that this is a pretty standard rate when dealing with such sums. Unfortunately, interest is the price of capital, no matter on what scale. If you're dubious, do the math on how much the lender is actually making. You're still doing a lot of good by making loans available to the people trying to improve their land.--talk 23:16, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I hope I am making a difference in a good way. If not then I'm going to withdraw my funds when I get it back. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 23:55, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I've been lending with Kiva for abou 2.5 years now, after an NPR story on them. I find it interesting just to pick the recipients of my loan (and my one guilty part is that I was loaned to someone because I thought he was hot.) MDB (talk) 00:45, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
I was looking at it a few days ago and the numbers were shocking to me at first, too. When you read the explanation though it seems pretty reasonable. One cannot check the exact figures of course, but it seems most of their "Field Partners" for a given region charge about the same. To me that suggests they are not loan sharks, but quite honest organisations trying to break even. — Pietrow 09:30, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## Terry Pratchett's Shaking Hands With Death

Youtube or iPlayer while it's available and if you can get it (higher quality at least). I've literally been laughing and crying in equal measure for the last hour watching this. narchist 23:39, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

I started watching it but I felt the tears start to well up fairly soon & had to change channels. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 00:03, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for posting this link. I know a few people in similar circumstances, one actively persuing a dignified exit. RagTopGone sailing 13:12, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
My mother had it: dignified was the last word for her end. Truly horrible. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 13:18, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
I couldn't even stay in the same room as it for very long. And I didn't even know what it was about. Wisest harmonic Hoover! 15:06, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

We don't link to Metapedia, so now that we have a page on Jew Watch should we link to it? Personally, I believe it's better to give these people enough rope to hang themselves, rather than censoring them and giving the impression you're covering up information. But, since we don't link to Metapedia, I'm evidently not in the majority on that.--Mustex (talk) 05:01, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

Generally we don't link to racist/hate sites in articles. Conservapedia is not included in that category. SJ Debaser 10:24, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Not linking to CP might cramp our style a little. Totnesmartin (talk) 10:37, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Exactamundo. As Fonzi would say. SJ Debaser 10:42, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## The Pope's UK Visit

It seems the UK government is going to cough up about £20 million for the privilege of having a homophobe in a pointy hat visit the country. If you're British and don't like this idea, the National Secular Society has a petition on the subject. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 09:23, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for that. I signed up right away. Bondurant (talk) 10:10, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
I had thought of demanding the right to discriminate against Catholics but this might be a saner alternative. ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 13:27, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
And Me. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 13:35, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
(I note that there's twats on there too: Monty Python's signed up! ) yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 13:38, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Sigh. There's always at least one... It's not doing too badly though - over 7,800 sigs in only a few hours. It's making the national press too. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 14:05, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
On line petitions always get phony signatures, which is one of the reasons they're so very ineffective. MDB (talk) 16:26, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

## Pay attention to me and I'll help Haiti

Moved to Forum:Pay_attention_to_me_and_I'll_donate_to_Haiti--talk 02:32, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## A proposed check on Loya Jirga power

I have proposed a check on Loya Jirga power. Please go here‎ to discuss it. Gooniepunk2010 Oi! Oi! Oi! 04:05, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## How do you demote?

I should probably know this already.--Mustex (talk) 23:52, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

You haz to be a Burrowkrat. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 00:04, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Oh, I thought I just had to be a sysop. And here I was preparing to claim glory for demoting User: Little Bobby Oppenheimer.
He seems to have been and gone. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 00:12, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Damn, imagine the damage we sysops could do if we had demoting powers. I shudder at the thought. Tetronian you're clueless 03:14, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Hell yeah. Huw would get drunk one night and bust us all down to swabbing the deck faster than you could say Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch. --Ask me about your mother 11:57, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Don't give him ideas: he is a 'crat. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 16:20, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## Black Books

For the UK Freeview viewers "Dave" is showing Black Books, one of the best sitcoms of the past few years, starting next Wednesday @ 9:40pm. Eggselllllent! yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 15:42, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

Three of the UKs great comedy talents in one great show. Unmissable! Bob Soles (talk) 15:45, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Dylan Moran's Irish. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 15:52, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Ooops - of course you're right. Bob Soles (talk) 15:56, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Bloody good, though. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 15:59, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Makes a change from QI and Top fucking Gear all the time. Totnesmartin (talk) 16:33, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Not hard to see why it's England's longest running series, and today, we're showing all seven episodes. — PBS guy, The Simpsons - Missionary: Impossible
4OD have all the Black Books episodes available to watch online any time. Most of 4's decent sitcoms are on there in full (Father Ted, It Crowd, Peep Show, Spaced, etc.) WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 19:03, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Forgot about that. I got series 1 of Black Books on DVD. Watching it now. Ep 3 is by far the best. Kevin Eldon ftw! CrundyTalk nerdy to me 20:32, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Lol. Customer (miffed): "You know, I'm probably getting a lot of second hand smoke from you", Shopkeeper: "Don't worry about it. Get me a drink some time". CrundyTalk nerdy to me 21:59, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## Scary Poll Numbers

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cNm97DDvXFY&feature=sub Wow, just wow.Ryantherebel (talk) 18:55, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

Nate Silver points out that this is a big strength and a serious problem for the GOP. But this is a reflection of the extremely low level of people identifying themselves as Republican - comprised increasingly of the hard right of the party and fewer moderates - and the lockstep conservative media. Weird world we live in.--talk 02:42, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Fail.--Mustex (talk) 03:56, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
The GOP is seeing the beginnings of what could become a very major problem to them: they have spent so much time and effort catering to a very hard core conservative base that they've managed to alienate practically all of their moderates. Plus, they've basically got a mix of loons, idiots and ass holes as leaders -- the base loves them, the rest of America is horrified. The teabaggers whack off at the thought of a Palin/Beck ticket in 2012 (once they figure out how to add 4 to 2008) and the rest of America says, "Ha, ha! You're kidding, right? You're... not... kidding."
Look at the top figures in American conservatism now. Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, Palin, Savage, etc etc etc. I will grant that Gingrich is a thinker, at least (and to quote the great Maxwell Smart, "if only he had used his genius for niceness, instead of evil"), but beyond him, the intellectual voices of conservatism aren't being heard over the din of rabble-rousing.
Back during the Fifties, Bill Buckley famously drove the John Birchers out of the conservative movement. I've seen speculation that the conservatives need a new Bill Buckley to do the same with today's conservatives nuts, but the difference now is that the nuts aren't just a force in conservatism, they're running American conservatism, and they demand ideological purity . It's a much bigger battle than Buckley faced.
The Democrats faced a big problem from 1980 or so until 1992, when they were viewed as "the party of special interests" and/or "the party of Jesse Jackson". I wonder if it would be a worthwhile strategy for the Democrats to start campaigning against "the party of Palin/Beck/Limbaugh" etc etc etc ad infinitum as nauseam. MDB (talk) 12:22, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm a little relieved that these numbers are as low as they are. Which leads me to wonder why Republicans in office seem so lock-stepped in support of the loonier side of their supporters. Last night I had a dream that a Moderate Party materialized in the gap between the Republican wing-nuts and the soft-shelled Democrats, but when I woke up I still lived in AmericaTM. Jorge as if my opinion counts 18:51, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## Meeting Fail

I just had a quick meeting with the one of the top dogs, named Wayne, of the organisation I work for to discuss some processes. He is big and really quite scary. Within 5 minutes of being in his office I had accidently drawn on my face and called him "Bruce" twice. Fail. Acei9 01:21, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

gOD! Times change: a "Top Dog" called Wayne! I don't think the name (as a forename) had been invented when I was alive. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 02:42, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Bruce. Wayne. Batman. Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 02:45, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
I know someone called Wayne, and he used to have lego man hair. We joked that we'd get him drunk and then put his hair back on the wrong way round. Ace, you sure you're not living in a sitcom? --Ask me about your mother 11:58, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Wayne Newton Me!Sheesh!Mine! 15:36, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
I think I upset my boss yesterday. He said "Oh god, I watched something I've never ever seen before last night..." and apparently "Straight porn?" was NOT an acceptable response. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 16:15, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
I know a Wayne, too. He's a close family friend. Although, he goes by Skip and I've seen him actually punch someone for calling him Wayne. I always figured that parents who hated their kids named them Wayne, if Skip was a superior alternative to it... The Foxhole Atheist (talk) 19:34, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## Orphans? Well, technically, their parents are still alive, but we're doing God's work here.

Fuck these people. Fuck them up the ass. TheoryOfPractice (talk) 19:57, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

Don't you see? Godbotherers always know what's best for everyone. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 20:02, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
But they didn't know it wa illegal to smuggle transport minors across national lines! They wanted what was best for the children! Why doesn't anyone think of the children!! Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 01:28, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## Warning

Don't stir coffee with a spoon that has just been used to fish stray chips(french fries!) out of the deep frier. Scum of the oily variety ensues. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 20:00, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

How, in the name of fuck, did you manage to do that? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 21:30, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Coffee and freedom french fries? Gross! Tetronian you're clueless 21:58, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Two women, 1 kitchen! say no more. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 01:24, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Coffee.... mmmmmmm..... Šţěŗĭļė baby-sitter

here Totnesmartin (talk) 23:22, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

summary --Swedmann (talk) 23:33, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

## My David Cameron

Apologies if you've seen this or don't live in Britain and don't know who David Cameron is, but this is effing funny. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 15:44, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

Is good! yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 15:58, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Also mentioned, lemme see... here. But, yes, it made me laugh at work, and get an audience around my pc. Bondurant (talk) 16:03, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Oops! Sorry for the dupe. I've not been reading everything recently :/ It's well worth reading again though! –SuspectedReplicant retire me 16:09, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
I've just emailed the site owner asking to use one of the pictures for our David Cameron excuse-for-an-article. Totnesmartin (talk) 20:42, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Permission granted! Totnesmartin (talk) 21:04, 3 February 2010 (UTC)
Good work. I hereby pronounce you to be the Anti-Karajou. --Ask me about your mother 11:56, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
As a (recently) official British Person, I declare MyDavidCameron to be full of win.-- 17:52, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## LOST Season 6

Moved to Forum:Some assholes spoiling LOST for me since I haven't seen it yet go away --talk 22:28, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## Ah, now I feel better.

A little dose of teh crazy helps. Tetronian you're clueless 03:30, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

(facepalm) These people make us all look so bad.--Mustex (talk) 05:10, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
'twas a joke CrundyTalk nerdy to me 09:13, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
But not completely without foundation - Given the plenitude of e-mails we've received over the years expressing the very same sentiments as this letter, it (regardless of the intentions of its creator and/or sender) apparently does reflect the genuine opinions of a not insubstantial readership base.  Lily Inspirate me. 09:56, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## Supporting moderate Islam and separation of Church and State

Ok, taking a class on Islam now (very different take from the college I did my undergrad at, which watered "Islam" down for the sake of not offending Muslims until there was almost nothing left distinctive about it), and we watched a Frontline video that I thought was very interesting, and made me wonder about something. Ok, one thing that's helping the fuel terror is the spread of Wahhabism (not to say that all Wahhabis are terrorists, but the kind of fundamentalism and anti-Westernism in Wahhabism is usually present in terrorism). The reasons for the spread seems to boil down to this: When the Soviets invaded Afghanistan they cracked down on hardline Wahhabi clerics, who fled to Saudi Arabia. The Saudis had to do something with them, so they put them to work in the educational system, and they made a big chunk of the country Wahhabi, and in turn the Saudis funded Wahhabi educational institutes around the world as part of their alms.

Now, to get to the point: The show went to one particular poor Muslim village (forget which country it was), in which the local public schools taught moderate Islam, that wasn't particularly anti-Western, as part of the curriculum. However, the Wahhabis had opened a separate school, and students attending that could get scholarships (courtesy of Saudi money) to go study in other countries. This leads to a major issue: It's easy to produce fanaticism when a particular ideology takes you from having no prospects in life, to having a good education and hope for the future. The interviewed the Cleric at the local public school, who said that what they really needed was scholarships of their own. So, here's my question: Assuming we accept the premise that it could cause more people to remain moderately religious, would it violated separation of Church and State if our government helped clearly religious organizations that taught more moderate Islam to provide scholarships to its students? (also, if any parts of my reasoning are entirely flawed, let me know)--Mustex (talk) 06:15, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Assuming you're American: yes, it would be pretty clearly abhorrent for the government to promote one version of a religion over another.--talk 07:46, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
That's a tricky one, actually. Yes, it would be wrong for a government to endorse a particular religion (at least in western secular society, the US, UK, France etc.). But if the only option is to help moderate/progressive organizations compete against fundamentalist ones, then it may be a practical necessity. narchist 14:10, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
I do not think it is a good idea for a country to be involved in the affairs of another for any other reason than that it is right for the individuals involved. To do so with selfish motives like this only increases resentment in the Muslim world and gives the extremists yet another reason to hate the west. By not being involved at all in the Middle East, the west would remove the raison d'être for the extremist groups. After all, one of the main drivers for the Wahhabis is America's presence in Saudi Arabia.
Unfortunately, it's already gone too far for that, and the damage is too deep and will take too long to put right. It just isn't practical to pull out entirely and leave the growing power of the extremist groups totally unchallenged, at least without supporting the western-friendly governments. The middle east has become the gordian knot of western foreign policy.
One thing that should definitely never be done is to put children (and other innocents) at risk. By putting money into "moderate" islamic schools, simply to oppose the extremist schools will put the teachers, children and their parents at risk. Al-Qaeda and the Taleban were not above a few beheadings of teachers and children of any school.
I'd be interested to see where this documentary got its information from, as I thought that The hard-line Wahabbis were against any form of education other than Koranic. Bondurant (talk) 15:18, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
The documentary was called "House of Saud," you can look it up if you want. Also, btw, this nation wasn't actually Middle Eastern. I think it was an island somewhere in the Indian Ocean, but can't remember which one (kind of embarrassed). They picked that village because it was the origin of a man currently wanted for a major bombing that killed over 200 people. He went to the Wahhabi school, and was given a scholarship to study in Pakistan when he was 16. And what I'm thinking of isn't so much trying to reverse Wahhabism among those already converted (if they've already made a choice, far be it for us to tell them their wrong), so much as trying to slow or stop its growth in places that are still mostly made up of moderate Muslims. I mean, give the people other opportunities, and I think few of them would really want to fight a war with a superpower when they could be getting jobs and raising families.--Mustex (talk) 15:33, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
The book Three Cups of Tea(nonfiction) addresses this topic pretty thoroughly. Basically, the founder of the Central Asia Institute, Greg Mortenson, has been helping villages in Northern Pakistan and Afghanistan open there own schools where there previously were none. There's a point in the book where some US Brass tries to offer him a cool million to help his cause, but he turns it down because he fears it would hurt his reputation as a charity not directly associated with the American government. To the best of my understanding the CAI has built up alot of credibility in the region and I've donated to them in the past. I'd encourage anyone interested in this issue to look them up. Jorge Legendary Creature-Human Ninja 18:08, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

I know we now have lots of cool templatey things people can use to mark up their uploads, but is it not as easy to use them as it should be? Example: http://rationalwiki.com/wiki/File:Clarktoon.jpg - no magic templates or boxes. I don't blame the uploader (or should I?), I think perhaps the interface isn't as good as it could be. And if the interface is good, Wodewick, please learn to check off the right boxes! ħuman 07:42, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## Why atheists need to speak up

Moved to Forum:Why atheists need to speak up 18:20, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## Richard Dawkins Documentary

Issue the first: Hai everyone, I'm back from wikibreak. Long story short in one run-on sentence: Got very angry about a more-aberrant-than-usual stunt performed on CP, the sheer callousness of it made me feel very sad, took some time away from CP, spent time with friends, debated politics, video games and other nonsense, much better now. Yay!

Now, on with the show. There's a documentary ABC will be showing on Monday called The Enemies of Reason, which is presented by Richard Dawkins. I know this documentary isn't brand-new, but I've never seen it before. Unfortunately, ABC will only be showing part 2 which focuses on alternative medicine, I really would like to have seen part 1, but we can't always get what we want. As I'm sure many of you have seen it, I'd love to hear what everyone thinks of it - rest assured, even if (remote chance) everyone says "OMG it sucked nuts" I still plan to watch it. I've never seen a Dawkins documentary before as I don't watch a great deal of TV, but being a fan of his written works, I'm curious as to whether this documentary is up to the same standard.

Glad to be back, I see things have gotten a little... weird while I've been gone, so I'd best be off to read through that massive wall of text. -Redbackdemands obedience 12:01, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

WB. Don't normally condone this kind of thing but... If you have eMule, then you can download the missing episode from this list. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 13:54, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm pretty sure it's on YouTube. Also, if you look hard enough, you can find the full interview between Dawkins and Derren Brown. The actual documentary cut this down to a few minutes but the full thing is over an hour and well worth watching if you can find it. narchist 13:58, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Actually, now I think about it, I think the Derren Brown interview was sort of officially released so there would be definitely no harm in trying to find it. IIRC, I got it from Ben Goldacre's mini-blog and I think Brown's website itself hosts it. Anyway, as much as I don't want to publicly endorse obtaining things through non-legal means, I really don't think Ricky D will be shedding any tears if you do grab it from some file-sharing site and you probably won't get the FBI on your arse as they seem to be concentrating on major music pirates more than TV sharers. narchist 17:02, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
I'd say that Dawkins would be glad for you to watch it no matter how you obtained it. Of course the powers that be at Channel 4 may have a different view.  Lily Inspirate me. 20:43, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

### PZ

Has been in Dublin and will be on BBC Radio Ulster on Sunday Dunno if it'll be i-playerable. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 20:52, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

I don't weather to laugh or cry at this.Ryantherebel (talk) 15:58, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Now that is fucked up creepy. narchist 18:40, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Utterly bizarre... ħuman 00:53, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

## I am tempted to put this in WIGO World...

But it doesn't have much to do with the world, being kind of out there. Here are some recent images of Pluto, as captured by the Hubble Space Telescope. Beautiful, if you ask me. ĴαʊΆʃÇä₰ 16:45, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

I can't see red very well =(( But I'm sure it's very pretty. I find it impressive that a sort-ofplanet as far away from the sun as Pluto would experience seasons. I'm not very knowledgeable with all this outer-spacey crap however, so it doesn't take much to impress me. -Redbackdemands obedience 16:53, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
How long 'til we see "Pluto-reddening-denialism? TheoryOfPractice (talk) 16:55, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
I think it's been theorised for a while that pluto could have some sizable season changes. For a quarter of it's year, it's closer to the sun than Neptune because of it's odd orbit. So during its "winter" it would be cold enough for its atmosphere to actually freeze, while in it's "summer" it'd evaporate again. narchist 16:59, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Another link including one to a movie. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 17:00, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
How long 'til we see "Pluto-reddening-denialism? Since you ask so nicely. Pluto is not even a planet. Only planets have weather and seasons. The reddening is obviously reflected light from the planet Nebiru which is beginning its approach to the sun in its 35,000 year orbit, (or 3,500 years ) Nebiru, Marduk and Enlil will arrive in earth orbit about February 2012. The already made a movie about 2012 , so it must be true. Hamster (talk)

## Let's debate abortion! Let's debate abstinence-only! Let's debate what's wrong with these kids today! Let's debate what's wrong with parents today! Let's debate whats wrong when these kids today ARE these parents today! Let's have a big drink!

Jesus Christ. TheoryOfPractice (talk) 18:18, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

11 is a bit young but not that amazing these days. I notice they kinda skipped over the father and circumstances of the conception. Hamster (talk) 19:49, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Well, that would invoke a very, very clear statutory rape case. Which is probably another article completely considering the bulk of that seemed to be quite real health concerns. narchist 19:51, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Meh. We had that in Edinburgh years ago. Wisest harmonic Hoover! 19:52, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
...wow...--Thanatos (talk) 20:33, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Could be worse. Lina Medina of Peru gave birth at an age of 5 years 7 months. I noticed as well that they made no mention of the circumstances of the pregnancy. Hmm. Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 21:40, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
The Edinburgh case was not short of details, most of which are depressing. Wisest harmonic Hoover! 21:53, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
I also seem to remember that the baby was taken away later when the girl got drunk at a party or something. Wisest harmonic Hoover! 21:55, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## Excuse me

I have been waiting here for a considerable length of time and I have yet to be served. Is it always this busy on Fridays? Erasmus Aloysius Runcible - gentleman, scholar and cat (talk) 19:38, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

sorry , sorry er's yer tea and scones ..Hamster (talk) 19:41, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
You probably want the back alleyyummy &  honey(or marmalade) 19:44, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Tea and scones are for humans. Bring me salmon. Erasmus Aloysius Runcible - gentleman, scholar and cat (talk) 19:45, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Allow me, your grace. One salmon, fresh from the river shop down the road. Totnesmartin (talk) 19:50, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
my finest Milk tea , and tuna scones , I feel so unloved :( Hamster (talk) 19:51, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Tuna scones? I may reconsider. And a hamster as well? I might start liking it here. Erasmus Aloysius Runcible - gentleman, scholar and cat (talk) 19:53, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
fair warning El Gotto, Hombre Hamster carries largly defensive weapon of Gun , beunos Dios, mi aqmigo 199.242.176.85 (talk) 21:48, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Can I interest you in a Loya Jirga Burger? It is made from only the finest ingredients. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 22:53, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

## O'Keefe rehash

Yay! Finally got high-speed and can continue following this story! This is what Fox news does not want you to know. Hannity is still defending this guy. Un-fuckin'-believeable. I also saw one comment on a forum about how an ACORN employee is suing the lil bastard. This was a week ago, so I cannot find where I saw it, but one poster said that they were glad not to donate to Haiti, and were instead going to donate to his defense fund.--Thanatos (talk) 04:57, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

## I got offered a youtube partnership!

Wow...just...wow. Ok, I was kind of hoping it might happen someday, but I figured it would be years in the future. Apparently, by reposting Neph's video, though (btw, got a message from a friend of his, his friend moved back in with him), I attracted so many hit (over 800 in the past 2 days), that youtube is now offering me a partnership. Could someone tell me: how much is this worth, and is it any hassel?--Mustex (talk) 04:09, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

You earn about \$2.50 per thousand hits, I believe. If you drop below a certain earning level, they drop you. This guy at PC Magazine recounts his experience.--talk 05:21, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Ah, good chance I'll get dropped then, but whatever. I may get a few extra subscribers out of it in the meantime. My real goal is to have enough that the people I respond to take me seriously enough to respond back.--Mustex (talk) 05:49, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Looks like it doesn't matter anyway. NephilimFree personally asked me to take it down, so I've decided to give anyone who wants to do further derivative works 24 hours to grab it up (matter of principle), and then its gone (edit: scratch that, it's all gone, deleted from my computer, I decided it wasn't worth it).--Mustex (talk) 06:04, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, I watched it. I don't know the context, but it seems like you were making fun of the guy's friend who'd suffered a serious illness, and him for taking care of her. It was a little weird.--talk 07:04, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
I was not making fun of her. I specifically said my heart bleeds for her. I was saying that he shouldn't blame her son and his ex-boss for all of his problems.--Mustex (talk) 08:48, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
It seemed a little sarcastic. But I don't know the context, like I said.--talk 09:00, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Watched it again. Yeah, still seemed sarcastic.--talk 09:16, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, you're not the only one to make that mistake, but it wasn't sarcastic.--Mustex (talk) 14:20, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
I got offered it. I have no idea why, though. narchist 15:55, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
After he deleted it, I grabbed it from the server and reuploaded it as a private video - once 25 people watch it, no one else can. Feel free to see what we were talking about.--talk 17:21, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

## To whom it may concern @Blightynet

It's something to do with the HTTP server; I can connect with FTP fine. Wisest harmonic Hoover! 08:51, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Bummer, I liked those bastids. Hope they're back soonish. ħuman 10:59, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
It's back up now. We just popped out to the shops before the rugby starts. Totnesmartin (talk) 12:39, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

## A Very Entertaining Creationist

I've been debating with someone in my comments section. The screenname is carterfamily8903. Thought the conversation might entertain you guys, it started on one video, and then went over to another. First here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3EjjMM2xzQA Then here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiTGxTl3dAk I wish he'd make videos on the subject, he's very amusing.--Mustex (talk) 15:56, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

## Health woo on the BBC?

I guess nobody's perfect. Tetronian you're clueless 20:10, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

## Funny Junk

STOP IT! Javasca₧ duuudddeee... 02:57, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

Hehe, that's a good one. That's actually taken from a Superpoop comic.--talk 06:07, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

## A reminder for my fellow sysops

See that button? Click it. Even if you revert the edit. Unless it's an edit to an article and you can't be bothered to check its factual accuracy, in which case leave it there and hopefully another sysop will do it. -- Nx / talk 09:29, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

...Why? Wisest harmonic Hoover! 09:30, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Because that's what a sysop is supposed to do. -- Nx / talk 09:32, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
It's only for posts with the ! next to them. --Psygremlin말하십시오 09:37, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Screw the Limon Jagoff, Nx is asking us to actually do what 'sops (& 'crats?) are "supposed" to do on a wiki. Instead of RA's brilliant idea of "I don't like red exclamation points so I'll sysop everyone!" ħuman 11:03, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
When I desysopped myself, I got complaints about leaving red exclamation marks and someone resysopped me for that reason. - π 11:06, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Probably me? I've gotten used to them again now that we don't sysop new editors on sight. Nutty's right, along with some other people - we should use the sysop and crat user groups as they were meant to be used, or at least something like that. Instead of as candy. ħuman 11:15, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I've been a sysop for a few months and I had no idea that I was supposed to do this. Tetronian you're clueless 18:02, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
Should we add it to the sysop guide? ħuman 22:57, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
No. What does it achieve? WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 21:07, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
It's already in there, but it isn't explained very well. -- Nx / talk 21:10, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

## Greetings from Snowmageddon

For perspective, I am 5'9". Snow is up to my waist

aka Snowcocalypse 2010 (since the December storm was already Snowcocalypse). aka SnOMG.

At least 18 inches of snow in Central Maryland (it's hard to tell with all the drifting) and more to come.

Thankfully, I still have power, though it did flicker off last night once. And we actually had what may have been thunder during a snowstorm, though I'm not sure it wasn't a tree falling. As I remember (I had woken up at 3:30 AM), it had the long, low rumble sound of thunder.

They're saying this may well be the record snowstorm for Washington, DC. That's a record that goes back to the Knickerbocker Storm of 1922. And it just dawned on me... that means there's almost no one alive who can remember the last snow storm this bad. MDB (talk) 12:10, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

We're getting pwned in Western PA as well. Easily 2 feet in our driveway. Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 12:32, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
We have power here, but the TV is near unwatchable. I guess I'll have to fire up the Xbox 360. --Edgerunner76Save me Tsisnaajini! 12:44, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
I think the snow's done with England for this winter. I walked down to the shop this morning with my mate without having to wear a jacket. Very liberating. SJ Debaser 13:35, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
You know, I've never actually come into contact with snow. In the winter, we can see it top of the mountains through the valley, but it doesn't get cold enough to snow here. On that topic, greetings from the southern hemisphere, where it's currently pleasantly warm, if not a little humid. So, just how cold is it with all that snow stuff laying about? I have my handy Fahrenheit-Celsius (upgrade to metric, bugger ya) converter ready to go! Oh, and another question from someone who thinks temperatures below 18C should be illegal - is snow heavy to shovel? I assume it is, but how the hell would I know? -Redbackdemands obedience 13:48, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
The thing with snow's weight is that it really depends on what the temperature is. If nearer to zero degrees C the snow is wet and heavy (as it is right now, the temp is near -3 C) and the colder it gets, the lighter it generally is. Shovelling some 24 inches of snow at -3 C puts the weight in the backbreaking range. Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 14:00, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
(ec)It depends on the moisture content. The big storm we had in December was very light weight and easy to shovel. I've not even started shoveling yet, but this is reported to be very "wet" and heavy. At least it doesn't seem to be piling up on the power lines. I can deal with losing my Comcast service for a few days, but losing power would be bad. MDB (talk) 14:08, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
And I finally did lose power. I had, as Lisa Douglas of Green Acres fame might have put it, no electrisickles from 10:00 AM till a little past midnight. I ended up going through five logs of firewood and wearing three layers of clothes, plus several blankets. Total snow -- the National Weather Service says my town got an even 28". MDB (talk) 05:42, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Rough, 'cause you guys don't expect weather like this. Amusingly, this storm isn't even touching New England. Couple year ago I had to make my own electrocity from gasoline for five days straight. The hard part was finding places with generators so they could pump the gasoline. Oh, and going outside last thing at night to refuel the generator. ħuman 06:14, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
According to the WaPo, this is the fourth worst snowstorm ever in DC, and this is the third highest winter snowfall total ever (and winter isn't over yet.) Note those totals are at Reagan National Airport. MDB (talk) 07:04, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
We got the 4th worst snowfall for Pittsburgh at 21.2", although with drifting, you couldn't even find my deathtrap Toyota in the driveway, and some of the snow had drifted to about eye level. It took all day to get the driveway cleared and to unbury 2 vehicles. I still have some digging to do, to get my car completely clear, and I look forward to shoveling snow at work tomorrow. Aboriginal Noise Punkrock 13:40, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

## Experimenting with a slightly different format

Ok, I've seen youtube videos that use quick jump-cuts in the past (most notably Lacigreen's "Doing Your Daddy"), and I decided that might be useful, since I can just say the same line several times and then cut out all the worst takes from a single video. I was hoping someone could give me an opinion. Also, I'm thinking of making the final shot ("Remember, we all die in 2012") kind of a signature for my videos, and I'd like to know if it works: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UlvP2-bwls4 --Mustex (talk) 02:55, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Tea Party

A lot of the WIGOs at WIGO World seem to suggest that the Tea Party is further to the right than the Republican Party. The articles that the WIGOs link to, however, don't really support this view. I would argue that the Tea Party is simply a reincarnation of American populism, and because many of its supporters are from the more conservative part of the US it has courted with the far right. However, I do not believe that it is a movement headed by fringe nut jobs, just angry people who don't like big government. As proof I would point to two facts: 1) the Tea Party does not have a social or religious agenda, just an economic one, and 2) many teabaggers protested one of their own conventions because they thought it was too decadent. Though the Tea Party may be more paranoid and more hateful, they are not further to the right. Thoughts? (Note: I do not support the Tea Party at all. But I do think we are misrepresenting them.) Tetronian you're clueless 17:20, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

The Tea Party are mostly a group of people who would customarily be part of the Republican base. All these people left the Republicans in record numbers, after it became clear they had no interest in following even their own absurd ideals. They weren't going to be Democrats, so now they're migrating from the Independents to this movement. As far as I can see, they're just Republicans who are fed up with their party spending money like drunken sailors with a fistful of credit cards, but who also buy the party line about Democrats. They have no place to go comfortably, so there they are.
I wish so much I could be there to see the convention and the speech. It is a fascinating movement in American politics.--talk 17:34, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
That makes sense. There is a lot of anti-intellectualism associated with the movement, which is probably why people tend to brand them as far-right. I suspect they're just lumping Democrats and Republicans together into "big government," which would explain why Congress's approval rating is 30%. Tetronian you're clueless 17:44, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
I think Congress' approval rating is so low because Congress is terrible. The Republicans are blatant obstructionists, who recognize that making the government fail as much as they quietly can will benefit them - because American politics is almost entirely a zero-sum game in this respect. And the Democrats have been held hostage by a few swing votes like Nelson, who have blackmailed their way into blatant pork to be bought off for things like the health bill.--talk 17:52, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
This year really has been a lose-lose situation in Congress. Admittedly the healthcare bill was full of pork, but the Republicans decided to kill it rather than compromise. I find it amusing that Republicans blame Democrats for the lack of progress because they claim the GOP refuses pass legislature with pork spending or earmarks. On the flip side, the Democrats have been awful at rallying their party. Same for Obama - he didn't reel in the Democratic leadership like he needed to. Of course, the Glenn Becks of the world don't really help much, either - rants about death panels are not exactly productive. Tetronian you're clueless 18:06, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

I always thought democracy was somewhat safe because the idiot vote was always split between the two parties and the so-called moderates, as every side has their share of morons. But the tea party movement seems to be united a huge share of the idiots into one very large block of (to paraphrase Rahm Emmanuel) fucking retards. That's a very big and powerful demographic. That, coupled with a rise in anti-intellectualism, is pretty scary. The fact that the teabaggers are recruiting Sarah Palin to be their "leader" says about all you need to know. The dunces have formed their confederacy, and it might spell doom. DickTurpis (talk) 19:03, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

I think the teabaggers will split the Republican vote in the next election, get Obama 4 more years, and then die off. Also, my ideal system would be four parties: Democrat, Republican, Socialist, and Libertarian.--Mustex (talk) 19:25, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
There's a fascinating thought: what if they actually got mad enough at the GOP to put up their own presidential candidate? Unlikely, but if they can't get a Palin elected in the primaries... 19:34, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm not sure its unlikely. Most of they may just vote for the GOP candidate, but if we get another spoiler in addition to whoever the Libertarians run, and they take an extra 2 or 3% of the vote, the GOP is finished.--Mustex (talk) 19:51, 6 February 2010 (UTC)
(EC) @DT: The fact that they have chosen Palin means that they are extremely anti-intellectual, which, as you so eloquently put, does indeed put them in the "fucking retard" category. But I don't think that splitting the idiot vote was ever a good think. In fact, I think it actually increased polarization. That doesn't mean that the Tea Party is a good think (far from it), but it does mean it is something a bit different. Then again, some people think it is just the same phenomenon over again. @Publius: I doubt it. In the NJ governor's election we had a 3rd party candidate who appeared competitive, but come election day his support vanished. It's really hard to compete with the two-party system when you get down to the wire. Tetronian you're clueless 19:55, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

Their main aim seems to be to run conservative, or very conservative, candidates against sitting moderate Republican candidates in this years primary. They will never vote for a Democrat, but as Farah wrote in Taking America Back they won't vote for Republicans that are; pro-choice, pro-civil unions for same-sex couples, non-Christian, and support tax increases for the wealthy. Their check boxes pretty much line up with Andy Schlalfly's on what makes a conservative. They rallied around that Conservative Party candidate and handed a safe Republican seat to the Democrats in a special election in early November. - π 23:28, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

Five reasons I support Palin 2012.--talk 08:47, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

I loved the shoutout to RW: "Sarah Palin just bought a new goat on Farmville!" ħuman 07:07, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Local blogger[redstickrant.blogspot.com] is obsessed with this, I think he is an organizer. Or something.He has become less coherent of late. Being a 6-8 cup a day drinker, I just want some tea. Green. Hot. No sugar. Tyrannis (talk) 15:18, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

## John Prescott

Talking about the internet (or, as he calls it, "network"): "a blog is passed on from person to person, like a christmas tree." Well that clears that up. Totnesmartin (talk) 10:57, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

Well, at least it's not a truck. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 12:57, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
A Christmas tree tube... Hmm... Wisest harmonic Hoover! 12:58, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Good ol' Two-jabs Prescott. At least he didn't claim to have invented the internet. Bondurant (talk) 10:07, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
In some alternative universe, John Prescott is Prime Minister and Boris Johnson is leader of the opposition. That would be fun to watch. Although not to live in. Totnesmartin (talk) 12:48, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Sarah Palin.

That's it. I've come to a decision. I'm going to do everything I can--put up posters, knock on doors, man the phones, beat up suspected Democrats in the line to go vote--WHATEVER IT TAKES, DAMMIT--to make sure that this woman is the next President of the United States of America. TheoryOfPractice (talk) 15:45, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

Welcome to the club, TOP. Tetronian you're clueless 17:15, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
but , but, If she leaves Alaska who will stare down the Russian Horde ? Who will patrol the border in her helicopter with hunting rifle ? make sure Palin stays in Alaska , or Siberia. Maybe her daughter could use a job since the guy dumped her and she has a kid to feed ? BUffy Palin for Secretary of State ( I m sure she can take minutes longhand ) Hamster (talk) 17:20, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm due to go to Siberia next week and the last thing I want to see there is Sarah Palin, thank you very much. ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 17:13, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
She can take minutes on her hand. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 17:35, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

## Essay and blocked

Hi there, I've got an upcoming essay due and I think it could be on mission for this site. How do I create an Essay page, as opposed to a normal article? Also, completely unrelated and off topic, I thought I'd create a Conservapedia account, but not to do anything silly with. Found I was blocked for being a vandal/troll/troublemaker by TK. I know very little about him, but seriously? Is it just an automatic block if you are found loitering here? I'm no conservative but I am a Christian (sort of) and certainly have never vandalised, trolled or made trouble in any way shape or form, on Conservapedia or any other website. --Seantalk 23:13, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

Just create Essay:Essay title here. --The Emperor Kneel before Zod! 23:14, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
As for TK - he literally blocks without thinking twice about it. Sooner or later, the Conservapedia Not-So-Secret Police will kick your arse off for being guilty of thoughtcrime. SJ Debaser 23:16, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
The recommended way is to go to Category:Essays and use the form there. It will insert the essay template for you, just don't forget to change "Your name here". You can also create a page by typing it into the search box, then clicking the red link on the search results page. -- Nx / talk 23:29, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
It's a blockable offense to be known to be on Rationalwiki. We spend a lot of time dissecting their stupidity, and they can't do anything about it except be passive-aggressive and sometimes get lucky blocking one of us.--talk 23:34, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough, thanks for the help. --Seantalk 23:52, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Oh and apparently I'm at the 'Uni for the Intellectually and Logically Challenged'. That made me laugh. --Seantalk 15:08, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Which one? Harvard, Princeton, Yale, University of Chicago, or Columbia? 17:51, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
York (UK not Canada) --Seantalk 19:37, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## The Tebow commercial

It just aired, and they didn't make any direct mentions to abortion. If you didn't know about the Tebow story or Focus on the Family, it wouldn't make much sense. Probably edited for that reason. So it's low key, but it's the principle of the matter. ENorman (talk) 23:51, 7 February 2010 (UTC)

A woman choosing to have a baby despite serious health risk to her and the child? I can't think of a less persuasive example.--talk 00:50, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I haven't really been impressed with any of the commercials... In fact, I think they've all sucked. SirChuckBA product of Affirmative Action 00:54, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Link. - π 09:55, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
CBS' favoritism is what sparked me during the debate. They passed up ads from, as far as I counted, atheists, gay rights suppoerters and pro-choice supporters, yet gave FotF a spot for \$2 million, compared to the 2.5 or 3 million from other agencies. It reeks. Then again, AFN won't air non-military commercials or PSAs, so I wasn't very motivated to get up at 3 in the morning to watch it. -- CodyH (talk) 06:39, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Local satire magazine reported that abortions in the South(except Florida) tripled, for fear that their children would play football for FloridaTyrannis (talk) 15:12, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

## Anyone see the caveman guy on Colbert?

Pretty interesting, but I'm wondering whether it's pseudoscience woo or not. WodewickWelease Wodewick! 04:12, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

He made some sense, but his premise was unproven. Doctors always tell you to eat lean meat and vegetables and avoid refined carbohydrates (most cereal products we eat these days are refined carbohydrates as few people eat wholemeal), so his diet would be healthy and you probably could live on it with no nutritional problems. But the idea that it is better because cavemen did does not follow, how do we know the were doing what was best for their bodies? Also he is ignoring the fact that most of our fruit and vegetable are the result of the agrarian revolution, they don't grow like that naturally. - π 04:24, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
You can improve our article on it if you want to do some research. - π 04:27, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I googled a little and read that "paleos" do not even eat New World foods like tomatoes because they were not available to the "original" out-of-Africa humans. Seems like more of a fad diet than a science based thing. WodewickWelease Wodewick! 05:29, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Tomatoes, really? They are extremely good for you, full of antioxidants and vitamin C and stuff. - π 05:31, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
On the one hand, the point that we co-evolved along with a certain available diet probably has some validity. On the other hand, that doesn't mean the available diet was optimal, and relatives of some foodstuff (keep in mind we are all relatives!) might be better for us, it also doesn't mean our domesticated varieties aren't better. And there is also the critical problem of determining what diet was dominant during the majority of our period of adaptation. ħuman 07:17, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Put another way, it is quite possible that the "optimum" diet for humans does not even exist in nature. ħuman 07:39, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Exactly, you just can't get mammoth nowadays for love nor money. Totnesmartin (talk) 10:06, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Mind you Bear Grylls is on TV now eating his usual weird crap and I can't help but think as disgusting as some of that it, out ancestors probably at some of that stuff. - π 10:09, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Well many people in the world still eat what we might consider to be weird crap, but surely there is plenty of weird crap on our supermarket shelves like Pop Tarts, Tootsie Rolls, Tang, Cheese Straws etc. (Sorry if I have offended any weird crap eaters.) ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 17:20, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
"Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern" is a show made of awesome. The Foxhole Atheist (talk) 17:59, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Future of Wicca?

Ok, every time I say this to anyone they think I'm crazy, but for a while now I've felt like Wicca is set to become Christianity's major rival religion in the West, far more so than Islam (at least within the US, Islam may take a big chunk of Europe with immigration). I say this because many of the values seem more in-line with "western" values than Christianity (men and women as equals, you can live your life as you choose as long as you don't hurt anyone, you're free to pick and choose what you believe). So, my theory is that the "freak," "santanist," and "bored teenager" stereotypes are holding Wicca back at the moment, but if they ever get over those the religion could spread like wildfire (notably, according to wikipedia, the American Religious Identification Survey put them at 8,000 in 1990 and 134,000 in 2001, and they're already #2 to Christianity in the Airforce). So, I have four questions for everyone who reads this: (1) Do you think Wicca could ever become a sizeable and/or powerful minority (or even majority, albeit I doubt that could happen in less our lifetimes) in the US? (2) If you're an atheist, would you rather live in a majority Christian or majority Wiccan country? (3) If Wicca did become a sizeable population, how do you think it would effect American politics? (4) How do you think it would effect relations with the Middle East (I mean, Muslims at least accepted Christianity as a pre-cursor to Islam, how would they react to dealing with open pagans)?--Mustex (talk) 06:52, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Given the speed it is growing (the Australian census has it as the fastest growing religion for years now) it could be come a serious minority group with in the next ten years. 07:01, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
1. No. There is absolutely no chance of this happening. It is way more likely that Chuck Norris will be caught on camera eating one of the severed toes of Billy Joel while an extraterrestrial coats him with peanut butter. Wiccans comprise 0.003% of the population or something like that.
2. Not enough information, and I can think of too many cons for both. For example, on the one hand it would be great if Focus on the Family had no donations. But on the other hand, most female Wiccans I've ever known of have been chubby goths.
I'm not sure how to answer either of your other questions. It's just such a spectacularly unlikely - nigh impossible - event, that to speculate about its consequences seems surpassingly difficult, like trying to guess how it would affect politics of everyone was born with two heads.--talk 07:06, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I'd like to point out that virtually every religion was tiny at some point. At one point Muhammad had to lead the army of Islam against the forces of Medina, and all the men capable of fighting numbered a little over 300, and there were 10,000 troops who wanted to kill them all (historical note: they survived because their sheer fanaticism in the first few battles impressed some bedouin tribes, and they joined). If a religion that small can become a major world religion, how can you seriously write off a religion of hundreds of thousands of people in a country where no one's allowed to kill them for their beliefs?--Mustex (talk) 07:15, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Not every small religion becomes big. And I see Wicca (in America, don't know about Australia) as a religion with neither tradition nor a central theology nor a serious leadership to get behind. I can sit down right now and write a text about Wicca that's just as authoritative as anything by Gardner, as long as it sounds cool enough and smacks of historicism. That's not what religions are made out of. Scientology needed a Hubbard, Christianity needed a Paul of Tarsus (that fucker), and so on.--talk 07:22, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Yes, but I was saying that could actually be an advantage. But, the lack of a central source for something doesn't prevent orthodoxy from forming as consensus. There are tons of beliefs that are held by the majority of Muslims and Christians that don't have any origination in the bible or qur'an (albeit they usually try to justify it as an "interpretation," its typically just what they want to believe). In the same way, there are certain orthodoxies within Wicca. For instance, most accept the Wiccan Rede, the rule of three, and the existance of the Summerland and of reincarnation. But, as for the lack of consensus, that's one part of my question about politics: I think it would actually make the world more secular if our government was run by a religion that couldn't agree on any values to enforce. (also, how many small religions are there growing at that rate over ten years?)--Mustex (talk) 07:29, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
As a non-Wiccan neopagan, it ain't going to happen. Neopaganism in general doesn't work the way most people think of a religion. There is no dogma, no sacred texts, no teaching that anyone has to take seriously. There is no real "religion" in the way most Westerners are used to thinking about it. It's much closer to a subculture than a religion.
Now, Wicca, on the other hand, does have all of these things, but "real" Wicca (as in the Gardnerian/Alexandrian type Wicca) is astonishingly small in the US. Most "Wiccans" in the US are more like the above neopagans. As for the other questions, I'm not an atheist anymore; I doubt it would affect politics much except to move it away from the Christianists, because pagans themselves are all over the political map; and most Muslim countries are a lot more flexible in their politics than we give them credit for. (EC) Researcher (talk) 07:34, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Ah, ok, but I'm still not following. I know that the belief system is alot more flexible, but aren't there still people who identify as Wiccan? Why does the lack of a clearly defined set of beleifs prevent that group from becoming a large percentage of the population?--Mustex (talk) 07:37, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I think the answer to that is a simple matter of definition. If there's no real way to determine if someone is truly Wiccan (or whatever), how can their number be counted? ħuman 07:44, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Census forms. I'm just going with people's open, self-definitions. I mean, if I asked you whether or not the United States could ever be majority Muslim, you wouldn't ask how to define a "real" Muslim, and there are still tons of sects (Wahhabis, seveners, twelvers, the Nation of Islam, etc)--Mustex (talk) 07:45, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Taking those points in reverse, Muslims believe that Allah is God and Mohammed is his prophet and stuff. Like Christians believe Jesus was God's Son, was resurrected and stuff. As far as census forms, yeah, that would work as long as they had a category that would capture all of them. Or do you suppose "Wiccan" will be the label every random neo-pagan or whatever would adopt? Now, back to the original question, where you compare Wiccan values to modern Western ones, I don't see why that would make people "join" Wicca or adopt some sort of belief system. Just because some religion has values I agree with doesn't mean I'm gonna join it, or, especially, agree with whatever supernatural stuff it promotes. ħuman 08:24, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Exactly, Wicca is a religion rather than a subculture because it has supernatural beliefs - magic, lots of deities, an afterlife, all that stuff - which many people will struggle to accept. In formal versions of Wicca there are initiation ceremonies as well. These are all eithergateways or barriers, depending on the individual. Wicca is fashionable at the moment, which is a mixed blessing, but the future is unwritten as The Clash used to say. Totnesmartin (talk) 09:42, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

(1.) No. The funny people that aim to have 8 kids per decade will take over before that. (2.) The majority of christians are casual anyway, they just want to have a church wedding and a cheap grave. They answer in polls they don't believe there's anything after death. It couldn't get better. (3.) idk, it would be gradual (4.) 9/11, with extra hatred? --Swedmann (talk) 12:49, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

(ec)(unDent) As far as the "fastest growing" religion goes, that's one of those statistical claims I loathe, because it can be wildly misused. For instance, if I establish the Church of the Divine Elvis (the Presleyterians), and I get one member (myself) in the first year, and then find four more members to partake of our fried peanut butter and banana sammich sacrament in the second year, Holy Graceland, that's a growth rate of 400%! We've got to be the fastest growing religion in the world! MDB (talk) 12:55, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Clearly the new religion in the west is Jedi-ism. It already has something like a half-million British adherents. --The Emperor Kneel before Zod! 13:05, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm with Palpatine. From my atheistic perspective, without clear proof the only one that has a chance with me is Jedi. Even then my participation would be half-assed.--Edgerunner76Save me Tsisnaajini! 13:48, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
• (1) Do you think Wicca could ever become a sizeable and/or powerful minority (or even majority, albeit I doubt that could happen in less our lifetimes) in the US?
• Possibly, but it would have to get over its reputation as a belief system of aging hippies and disaffected teenagers and the like. You'd need a prominent Wiccan to "come out of the broom closet", as they say, and I can't think of any prominent Wiccans. There have long been rumors about Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac fame, though she denies the rumors, and even if she confirmed them, that's not really going to dispel the "aging hippie" stereotype. I'm friends with a Wiccan who is a multi-millionaire lottery winner, and one of his plans for his money is to help spread the Wiccan "gospel", as it were -- someone like that could have an effect. (And even before he won the money, he did appearances on local radio discussing his beliefs. And on a major rock station, not a talk station.)
• (2) If you're an atheist, would you rather live in a majority Christian or majority Wiccan country?
• I'm not an atheist, I'm a progressive Christian, but it would depend on the philosophy of the majority Christians. If it was hard core Jerry Falwell fundamentalism, I'd pick the Wiccan majority, even if it made me the minority religion. The Wiccans would e less likely to persecute me.
• (3) If Wicca did become a sizeable population, how do you think it would effect American politics?
• A general shift towards social liberalism, at least in terms of sexual and sexuality issues (and obviously freedom of religion issues). Not necessarily more liberal on defense, foreign policy, and fiscal issues -- neo-Pagans are a good deal more diverse on such issues, perhaps more than you might expect. (For instance, Eric S. Raymond is a neo-Pagan of some sort (I don't know if he considers himself a Wiccan) and he is hard core conservative libertarian. I don't think he's especially reflective of the pagan community (in fact, I wouldn't be surprised if many considered him to be an ass, like happened in the Free Software community and another community Eric and I were both involved in), but he does show its diversity of thought.
• (4) How do you think it would effect relations with the Middle East (I mean, Muslims at least accepted Christianity as a pre-cursor to Islam, how would they react to dealing with open pagans)?
• Interesting question. Certain elements of the Islamic World would probably be less welcoming to us, but on the other paw, the US wouldn't have as much political pressure to reflexively support Israel without question. MDB (talk) 14:23, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
1. No.
2. Christians. Wicca is a bunch of silly people larping religion. It really freaks me out.
3. Hopefully it would help with social issues, but it would probably just make it more impotent.
4. Negatively. They would respect us considerably less. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 14:42, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Wicca is a bunch of silly people larping religion. This made me laugh. It's true. My step daughter was a Wiccan (and a cranky intolerant one at that) for a couple of her teen years. It is quit difficult for me to take it very seriously. I've the impression that most people convert after reading Lord of the Rings. Me!Sheesh!Mine! 18:28, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I agree with the larping religion comments above. Wicca won't get past the hippy & bored teenager stereotypes, because it has little to offer beyond kook value & pseudo-spirituality. In answer to the questions: (1) No. It will continue to grow in popularity on a small scale as an alternative religion, but never become a mainstream religious movement. (2) No, I'd rather not. (3) There'd be more of a left-wing party & a hard-right one, instead of two more-or-less centre-right parties. (4) Not that much. I don't think "Christianity as a pre-cursor to Islam" is really a big theme in modern international relations. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 19:10, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

BTW, on the issue of bored teenagers and hippies, I'd like to bring up another analogy to the rise of both Islam and Christianity: In both cases, didn't the religions start with people who were outcast to some degree or other? In the case of Christianity, the belief that everyone was equal in the eyes of God was significant to its gathering of followers, while in the case of Islam it created a community that was appealing to orphans and other people without tribal protection (Muhammad lived in a tribal society, where law was kept by the threat of retribution if you did something to a member of another tribe. Essentially, under Muhammad, the very first Muslims formed their own tribe that wasn't based on kinship). Now, granted this isn't a perfect analogy (we're comparing lower class people to somewhat weird middle and upper-class people), but in todays society I have trouble believing that the next religion is going to come from the lower class. This is not to say it won't eventually spread there, or that it won't be sympathetic to them, but that most lower-class people are religiously very conservative in this society (you could make an argument that this is the result of universal suffrage, since they're an easily influenced group, the religious right makes an effort to keep the poor well-indoctrinated, that they've never made before in the history of mankind).--Mustex (talk) 22:03, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Climate skepticism

Well, shit. If this trend keeps up, we're going to fuck ourselves over pretty badly. Tetronian you're clueless 13:59, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Reminds me of that South Park episode. 1 out of every 4 Americans is retarded. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 14:44, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I just read that. What are they expecting? So because a few years ago we were told that the world will get hotter, and yet I'm not sitting on a sunny beach in the middle of Staffordshire in February, well, it can't be right, can it? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:47, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
666 can be found in the chemical formula of climate change. I noticed this in high school when cheating on a test. --Swedmann (talk) 15:21, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
It is indeed. I own a copy of a horribly non-proofread POD/self published book which clumsily builds towards the identification of carbon (6p 6n 6e...) as the antichrist. This idiot also listed the KJV in his bibliography twice, once under "James, King" and I forget the other. ħuman 18:17, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
It's not surprising, but it certainly is annoying. It really does my head in that people with no scientific understanding at all feel qualified to shout "oh, this climate change thing is all bollocks" when they clearly don't have a fucking clue. Yes, governments are using it as an excuse to tax people. but that doesn't affect the evidence or the science. I also think it's because people find it hard to relate to the future; if something won't bother them until after they're dead, why worry? DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 16:08, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I should bring some of those people here to Canada. When I was a kid, we had snow right before Halloween. Now, we almost have a green Xmas and I do not believe we have even had 2 ft of snow this year.
BBC news did a decent job of ramming home the "there's a difference between climate and weather" point, and clearly pointing out the fact that elsewhere in the northern hemisphere was much hotter than usual. However, the Have Your Say comments seem to be claiming that this is "moving the goalposts" when it isn't. But, you know, people are idiots. That's been a long established fact. That will kill us long before the climate does. narchist 17:11, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## This is not a story from "The Onion"

Okay, the details give the impression that the soldier was seriously deranged. But I can't help but think, "this is what happens when you repeatedly insist that waterboarding isn't torture!"

MDB (talk) 14:49, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Eh?
 “”As his daughter 'squirmed' to get away, Tabor said he submerged her face three or four times until the water was lapping around her forehead and jawline.
That's not waterboarding, that's holding someone under water. I think the Daily Mail has reported this up to their usual standard. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 15:12, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
It's got to the point where any abuse involving water is called "waterboarding", especially by despicable rags like the Daily Hate. Bob Soles (talk) 15:15, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Fair points, both of you. I confess my wrongitude. MDB (talk) 15:20, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Not you, DM are at fault. I added this comment:
 “”"As his daughter 'squirmed' to get away, Tabor said he submerged her face three or four times until the water was lapping around her forehead and jawline" "Tabor allegedly admitted grabbing his daughter, placing her on the kitchen counter and submerging her face into a bowl of water" That isn't waterboarding. Waterboarding is what the people are doing in the photo on this page. I guess it doesn't sound as interesting unless you add a topical torture word to a tabloid news story these days.
The comments are moderated though, so they won't show it for fear of looking like pricks. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 15:21, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Ahh, so it wasn't "proper" waterboarding so therefore it's perfectly acceptable. Waterboarding simulates drowning by pouring water up your nose and basically flooding the top of your head so you can't breath - although because you're upside down you don't actually drown. You get the same effect whether you submerge someone's head or pour water on their face. narchist 17:06, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I never said it wasn't bad. What I said was that the news article was saying "OMFG1!!! SOMEONE WATERBOARDED (THAT'S TORTURE) THEIR CHILD" when in actual fact he held her head underwater (which is not acceptable, but still isn't waterboarding). CrundyTalk nerdy to me 17:08, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, but experience shows that pedantry often lands you in more trouble than it's worth. ГенгисOur ignorance is God; what we know is science. 17:25, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Waterboarding is simulated drowning by pouring water over one's mouth and nose - small amounts of water fill the mouth and nose, entering breathing passages and causing the victim to believe he is drowning (probably unconsciously for the most part, as waterboarding invokes an absolutely primal fight or flight response).
<not defending waterboarding>Waterboarding isn't intended to kill, just invoke this basic response. Submerging a child's entire face underwater in a sink is called "drowning" her. I'm surprised you guys don't think this is worse? It's not waterboarding, it's attempted murder. Lil difference. 17:45, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Actually she was dunked face up, to the point where water was getting close to her nose and mouth. Note, she was known by dad to be terrified of drowning or whatever, that's why he chose this "method" of encouragement. ħuman 22:00, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
You guys are all missing the point. I bet this girl knows the alphabet now. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 17:51, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I was once punished in such a way that it resulted in my knowing my times tables inside out and backwards (well, up to 12 x 12). But no one tried to drown me. That was swimming class. ħuman 18:22, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Good observation. It's okay to throw kids into the cold pool at 7:00am and let them struggle to keep from drowning. It's okay to force your kid to sit there and read something. It's not okay to mix the two. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 18:26, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
What surprises me is that the Mail is condemnatory. I'd have thought it was right up their street. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 18:33, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

I wonder, if he diluted the water, would that make it more effective? ħuman 22:00, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Anyone ever hear of this?

Fantasy Wargaming by Bruce Galloway. Written in 1981. Saw it at the pawn shop and decided to pick it up.--Thanatos (talk) 16:47, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

I remember owning a copy of it when I was a young'un. It was kind of a review of different fantasy role-playing games, written at the beginning of the D&D "age", plus it had its own attempt at an RPG in it (which I doubt anyone ever played.) Oh, and it does have a listing at amazon, with reviews. MDB (talk) 17:02, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I have it. I borrowed it from a friend 25 years ago and forgot to give it back. It's rather interesting. I didn't think much of the rules, but I read most of it for the historical information that it had on medieval settings. --Edgerunner76Save me Tsisnaajini! 12:24, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

## Don't Ask Don't Tell promotes honesty!

Because otherwise, men will claim to be women and women will claim to be men.

No word on "cats and dogs living together". MDB (talk) 18:34, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

So stoopid, it's not even funny. Just depressing. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 18:42, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Could we steal this?

This could be a big help around here. Can we steal it? SirChuckBThat is all 22:28, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Not without asking them first. They haven't made the source public. Wisest harmonic Hoover! 22:31, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
(EC) As long as it doesn't take up too much server load. Nx, do you have anything to say on the subject? Tetronian you're clueless 22:32, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
We don't get that many & I , for one, always check any IP edits, which are the commonest unsigs. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 22:36, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Does RationalWiki have a Hall of Shame for nutjob scientists

I want to propose Dr Jason Lisle , Phd in Astrophysics from Colorado University, Boulder. He now runs the Creation Museum Planitarium explaining how the Big Bang is untrue and that we see distant galaxies because .... well I lost the plot , tired light and God carried it or something. video HERE Hamster (talk) 22:52, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

I sincerely wonder what would happen if the academic community started firing people for spouting this guy's brand of "scientific creationism." Having a particular "scientific" view is not a protected category under any law in the United States. But I guarantee you that if a single creationist was actually discriminated against on such a basis he'd file a Title VII lawsuit in a heartbeat. Where are the reports of these cases being filed, anyone? 23:03, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I'll get on a Jason Lisle article. That guy is a sham and clearly is throwing the "dr" around as a form of argument from authority. narchist 12:04, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Done. narchist 12:49, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Nice work! ħuman 16:53, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

## F&L on the Campaign Trail - 72

I am reading Fear and loathing on the Campaign Trail - 72 and I am wondering why I had never read it before. Easily the best work Thompson ever produced. As well written as Hells Angels and funny as hell. Acei9 23:24, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Four More Years! Four More Years! Four More Years! Bob Soles (talk) 23:26, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

## Hannah hoax?

If you have been following me recently (stalkers), you would know that I intently following any news concerning the James O'Keefe and I am sorry to bring that twit up again, but this caught my eye as fishy. His accomplice, Hannah Giles, has sent out letters urging people to donate to her defense fund against ACORN. Her father is a right-wing (no surprise there) author and radio host whose fans include Ann Coulter and Ted Nugent. She only needs 5K to defend herself, which I am sure her daddy would be happy to cover. Anyone else think this is a hoax set up by her or a third party?--Thanatos (talk) 00:47, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

Where did this idea come from that ACORN "put Obama in the White House"... I mean I get it, ACORN = scary black people, and voter registration = higher turnout = Republicans lose so voter registration = voter fraud, but still. In the category of "elections of new Presidents who were not involved in the previous administration," Obama's 52.9% beats Bush, Clinton, Reagan, Carter, Nixon and Kennedy... so any of those elections could have been fraudulent too? Oh wait they were white, never mind. WodewickWelease Wodewick! 01:39, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I think it is more an attempt to use the pubs hatred of Obama to help her(if it really is her). Although, from what I have seen, the notion that her partner is a racist is not without warrant.--Thanatos (talk) 01:56, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
The ACORN voter fraud claims come from the fact ACORN was involved in registration fraud, which is, obviously, not the same thing. And even that leaves out several key details:
• It was actually ACORN general employees that perpetrated the fraud, not its leadership. They hire people to collect registrations, and while they're paid by the hour, they do have registration goals. ACORN was convicted of lax oversight of the people they hired, which seems a reasonable charge.
• ACORN was found out because they followed the law and submitted even the fishy applications, because they're legally required to submit every application they receive (in most jurisdictions), even if its from "Mickey Mouse".
• Voter fraud itself is incredibly rare. The Bush administration went after it heavily, but never could find any evidence of massive conspiracy, or much fraud at all.
FactCheck.org has a very comprehensive analysis of the entirety of charges about ACORN and Obama.
ACORN has long been a conservative boogeyman, and the fact that Obama had connections to them pushed them high on the "things to scare ill-informed people with" list. It really has no great claims to high ethical standards, but its not the massive fraud machine its made out to be, either. MDB (talk) 12:20, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
O'Keefe was also aware that some states require two-party consent to taping. He stated when he did his Planned Parenthood sting that he was careful to find states with one-party consent. He was hoping that media coverage would keep ACORN from filing charges against him.--Thanatos (talk) 16:35, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Ah, the old "refuge in audacity" strategy. In the immortal words of Rocket J. Squirrel, "but that trick never works!" MDB (talk) 16:44, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

## Not sure where to ask this...

Please could a 'crat change the link on Recent Changes' header from Short Articles to Category:Articles requiring attention? It gives a wider range of things that need improvement and seems more appropriate. Obviously, it should only be changed after the usual ten rounds of in-fighting. Starting... –SuspectedReplicant retire me 21:19, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

Why are you trying to ruin my wiki? TheoryOfPractice (talk) 21:21, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
This place is no fun anymore. I'll be back when you all grow up. -- =w= 21:24, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Do it yourself, and be prepared for the wrath of Human: `{{Useful Links}}` -- Nx / talk 21:26, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Leaving this wiki is the best thing I ever did. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 21:26, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I didn't check, but I assumed only 'crats could do it. And Human is just a big softy. I think I'm in his good books at the moment anyway. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 21:28, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I changed it...BATTLE STATIONS!!!! — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 21:31, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. Makes more sense to me. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 21:34, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Pwned!
YOUR {{USEFUL LINKS}} ARE NOTHING MORE THAN A GLORIFIED \B\! UNLESS I GET PUT ON THE JOYOUS LURCHING, I'M LEAVING!!!! --The Emperor Kneel before Zod! 23:09, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

## How to commit Chronocide

Smooooth

Bored? Got spare time? Allow me to help you with that. ĴάΛäšςǍ₰ sysop and 'crat! (does it matter?) 00:19, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

Bastard! yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 00:55, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
That's a first: #1 cat is fascinated! yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 01:03, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Kitty attacking the moving planets? ĴάΛäšςǍ₰ don't cast the first stone, and I won't throw it back 01:26, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Head following round in ellipseseses. Incidentally, I've never known how slingshotting works (I still don't, obviously) but now I see it, it's so clever. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 02:06, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
That's awesome!--Mustex (talk) 01:31, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Spirograph! ħuman 02:24, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
That's really cool! Almost worth the half hour of my time it burned. Tetronian you're clueless 02:32, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Oooooo.... pretty..... Šţěŗĭļė baby-sitter 02:45, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Fun...after a few tries I got a really inhospitable orbit going. ~ Kupochama[1][2] 03:08, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
All it needs is the ability to add a monolith and play some Richard Strauss.... MDB (talk) 17:19, 4 February 2010 (UTC)
Ooh, I got a smooth orbit going. What's my prize? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:21, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Mass Pos X Pos Y Vel X Vel Y
100 -100 0 0 50
100 100 0 0 -50
0.001 -140 0 0 -80
0.001 175 0 0 70

A pretty flower! -Redbackdemands obedience 15:29, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Mass Pos X Pos Y Vel X Vel Y
100 -100 0 0 50
100 100 0 0 -50
0.005 -175 0 0 142
0.005 175 0 0 -142

This produces a binary star system, each star with an orbiting planet 20,000 times less massive, in which the planets swap stars every couple of "years". (Run it on the middle speed setting. Anything faster has a tendency to kamikaze the planets into the opposite star.) The Foxhole Atheist (talk) 15:54, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

Awww, that is so cool. Even on normal speed, mine ended up smacking into eachother eventually, but when it works it's really impressive. -Redbackdemands obedience 16:02, 5 February 2010 (UTC)
Another site for me to be temporarily obsessed with. Here's a cool thing. Check out the 4 star ballet preset. Then increase the mass of one of the stars by .01 and watch what havoc that plays. DickTurpis (talk) 20:47, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

How do I stop doing this? — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 20:55, 5 February 2010 (UTC)

You could click the X on the upper right. Unless you use in Mac, in which case I express sympathy. Javasca₧ I know Anonymous user condenses athwart etchings. 15:55, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Oh come on, Mac isn't that bad. Psst! Help! I'm trapped! Help me get out of here-- Tetronian you're clueless 19:12, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
I've maded a page for things like this. yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 19:30, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Don't we have a whole bunch of time wasting websites on the boycott page, wherever it is? ĵ₳¥ášÇ♠ʘ would rather be hated for who he is than loved for who he is not 21:00, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Where? yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 21:10, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Help:Bored -- Nx / talk 21:15, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
That is not what I am thinking of, there is a whole page on the boycott that I can't find that has a bunch of games... ĵ₳¥ášÇ♠ʘ Over 2700 edits! Thats over 808! 02:50, 10 February 2010 (UTC)
Here you go. The Foxhole Atheist (talk) 20:41, 10 February 2010 (UTC)
CRAP! ĴαʊΆʃÇä₰ no really. 04:50, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

## "The Next Religion"

For those who took part in the Wicca discussion, you might find this essay interesting.

I find this essay has two key insights:

1) that previous world religions were syntheses of multiple elements. After all Christianity is not exactly the personal ministry of Jesus, it's Jesus mixed up with elements of pagan mystery religions, Jewish apocalypticism, the Greek philosophy of many of the Church Fathers, Paul's personal notions, and so on.

2) that religions become big because they meet the spiritual needs of a particular population in a particular place and time, not necessarily because they have any truth value.

From this point of view if we accept that Christianity is dying, then "the next religion" will contain elements of all the challengers to Christianity we see today. Unfortunately that doesn't give much hope that the successor will be any better... probably some kind of eco-mysticism mixed up with elements of personal-magic woo (voodoo, law of attraction, whatever). WodewickWelease Wodewick! 20:18, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Christianity is dying because religion is dying, & because religions in general are losing their hold on the "spiritual needs" (or rather social & psychological needs) of populations. It's happening to Christianity most visibly because all of the things that present a challenge to religion tend to be most abundant in societies which happen to be traditionally Christian ones, but it will happen gradually to all other societies & religions too. Sure, they may be a few people quitting Christianity in favour of Wicca or Scientology or some other emerging religion, but I think far more leave Christianity because they are rejecting religion altogether. WeaseloidMethinks it is a Weasel 22:04, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
That seems to be a fascinating essay, from what I've read so far. Thanks for the link. Broccoli (talk) 23:30, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Is religion dying? Church attendance is down but sales of all varieties of "alternative" religious materials are up.
To me it seems like people are just porting their needs away from established churches and into spiritual woo, quantum mysticism, Ken Wilber, Law of Attraction type crap, neopaganism, and general "I believe in God BUT there are many paths to truth" apatheism.
I am skeptical of the idea that scientific rationality will "free" us from religions. This fantasy of a Star Trek future ignores the emotional NEED many people have for religious beliefs. It also ignores that most people aren't secularist intellectuals.
The news bit on Conservapedia, supposedly reporting on how "atheism increases superstitious belief", actually surprised me in the extent of American Christians who hold nondoctrinal or antidoctrinal beliefs, for example the percent who believe in astrology or reincarnation. WodewickWelease Wodewick! 00:13, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I guess that the 'new religion' will use something like the Orange Catholic Bible.  Lily Inspirate me. 09:50, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

People, I'll tell you what the Next Religion is going to be: you on your knees before the Lord, praying for forgiveness. Because there's only one way to Glory, and that's with Christ. And all of those other religions is just the Devil's works. Won't make no difference if you're a Atheist, a Islam or a Pagan, they'll all take you down the same road to same cursed end. Get right with God while you still have the chance. RationalChristian (talk) 08:21, 10 February 2010 (UTC)

## Politics Walkthrough w/ Commentary

What do you think about conscription? It is a redlink as of now, which makes for sad entities. --Swedmann (talk) 21:25, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

It's up to you not to heed the call up... ħuman 21:57, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
Done. narchist 13:45, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I de-linked it here because I suspect it's "lonely", nothing linked to it when I checked it yesterday (when it was still red here). ħuman 16:48, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I see it's linked now. Cool. ħuman 15:20, 10 February 2010 (UTC)

## Verbosity

We seem to be attracting a few rather verbose mono-topic editors (Qwertyuiop & Earthland come to mind). Why do they think that beating us about the head with reams of rabbit will do them, or their point, any good? yummy &  honey(or marmalade) 22:51, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps we need a new set of permissions that'll restrict people to just adding pictures to the furry fandom article. Need moar! --Ask me about your mother 23:32, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
I don't think it necessarily matters. If the site and its members want to hold certain opinions, they should be willing and able to fend off people who disagree. Preferably without resorting to shouting "troll troll troll" at them. Qwertyuiop and Earthland do the site a much better service than most other users do. narchist 13:11, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
We've always had single-issue editors. Rem.ryan was all over us touting libertarianism, and CUR and Carptrash stayed close to their pet areas. two at once isn't really a big thing. Totnesmartin (talk) 15:39, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
There's an irony in that in my endless arguments with EL over abortion it has made me really think about it and, as a result, I know far more about why I believe the way I do. Similarly Rem.ryan made me look closer at the limitations of Libertarianism. Even qwertyuiop has a point. I think it's healthy to have them around even if EL and I so seem always to end up in childish abuse. Bob Soles (talk) 16:54, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I agree with Bob. Plus, weren't we just saying that we need to encourage more debates and discussions? Editors like them, while single-minded, do provoke some interesting conversations. Tetronian you're clueless 16:47, 10 February 2010 (UTC)

## Sarah Palin caught using "telepalmter"

Awesome. (I love how she literally crossed out "budget cuts" to be replaced with "tax cuts." Way to be fiscally responsible!) Here is a video of her using the talking points. When you compare the fact that she had to write down something to remember that speech (no facts or figures) to the fact that Obama kind of tripped up a GOP congressman at the Q&A by showing that he had read, in detail, the congressman's proposed bill... well all I can say is: Run Sarah run! WodewickWelease Wodewick! 01:59, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

Ah, the delicious irony of being anti-intellectual: you can make fun of the "liberal elite" all you want, but when your turn comes they will have even more dirt to throw at you. Tetronian you're clueless 02:03, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Am I supposed to be surprised or something? Because I'm certainly not. Sarah Palin couldn't tell her ass from a hole in the ground. The Spikey Punk I'm punking my punk! 04:21, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
I love how Republicans attack Obama for using a teleprompter, but Palin READING her speech from a hard copy gets a total pass. SirChuckBCall the FBI 04:44, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
What sort of unscientific nuttiness is "palm reading"?  Lily Inspirate me. 12:10, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
She's done outside of far-right loonies. Imagine any potential debate in the future. How is the first question to her not - "Can we see the palms of your hands?" That said, I'd welcome her as the Republican nominee in 2012. --Edgerunner76Save me Tsisnaajini! 12:19, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Amazing how many of these "front-runners" ruin their chances simply by being on television. Interview Palin, people hate her. Bobby Jindal gives a rebuttal like a robot, his chances for President are already over with. Maybe that's why they hate "the liberal media": being shown that they're just suits, not substance, is a bad, bad thing. --Irrational Atheist (talk) 12:25, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
All I have to say about "Palin in 2012" is "be careful what you ask for, because you just might get it." There's an All in the Family episode where Archie and the Meathead are arguing, and Archie's parting shot was "in '80, yer gettin' Reagan!" And the audience roared with laughter, because there was no way the ultra-conservative ex movie actor could ever be elected President. MDB (talk) 12:28, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Archie Bunker, the greatest president we never had.--Thanatos (talk) 16:31, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
At least a President Bunker would have had Edith to talk some sense into him. MDB (talk) 16:42, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Quick Thought: is Sarah Palin's property taxes on the back of her hand too?--Thanatos (talk) 17:01, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Did she misspele anything? Just curious.20:38, 9 February 2010 (UTC) CЯacke®
I don't think so, no. But this is interesting - she appears to have "Track Palin" and some other text embroidered on the cuff of her shirt or jacket. Very strange... does she also have trouble remembering her family's names? I demand a complete investigation! ħuman 21:34, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
No, that's for the new iPhone app where you can see where she is. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 21:39, 9 February 2010 (UTC)
Good one... Anyway, I was reading the huffpo comments yesterday (well, skimming) and a recent one was pointing that out. I'm a gonna go see if anyone explained it yet. ħuman 16:23, 10 February 2010 (UTC)