RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive86

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Contents

All kinds of crazy[edit]

So, an innocent post about a new device police are using to pull over motorists with unpaid fines, etc., takes a bizarre (and hilarious) turn, courtesy of one Stephen J Serva Dei. --Ψ GremlinTala! 17:25, 15 December 2010 (UTC) File:Aki Anastasiou's Photos - Mobile Uploads.png

What the hell is that shit? DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 17:44, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Reminds me a bit of some schizophrenics I've come across. DickTurpis (talk) 17:53, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Here's the web page. Usual shit really. Jack Hughes (talk) 17:55, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
"That shit" is standard sovereign citizen shit, with a bit of religion thrown in.--ZooGuard (talk) 18:24, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
"Any system that uses fear is doomed from the start", so we should instead use a system that tells people they are going to burn in hell for all eternity unless they do as we say? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 18:29, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
That's different! Because, although their god threatens you with eternal ultra-violence, he does it because he loves you... which might sound kinda creepy but really isn't for reasons that never were entirely clear... --TheEgyptiansig001.png 20:04, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Don't most abusive parents (and partners) say that as well? CS Miller (talk) 20:14, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
There's a little conspiracy shit thrown into the mix too. It's got trappings of "TEH STATE IS EVIL!!1" in there and that his pet group/resistance/religion is the answer. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:14, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

Super Exciting Wikileaks Game[edit]

All right, it really isn't that exciting. But it's always nice to see how major events always find themselves in their own games, given time. ~SuperHamster Talk 22:54, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Obama Supporter vs Progressives[edit]

The monotone bears again--Thanatos (talk) 23:48, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

If uncle fuckers want to make a fucking video, don't be using some stupid video text to speech service. No matter how funny your script is, no fucking computer yet invented can tell a joke. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 01:50, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
The "So You Want To Do a PhD in the Humanities?" one is funny, but only because the script works with the monotone. Trying to do politics via XtraNormal is just yawnsome, it takes at least 10 times longer to say something than it does to read. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:19, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
That one was hysterical. Even my English-major friends enjoyed it. Tetronian you're clueless 02:29, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

Ho ho ho![edit]

I am sure we have all felt like this. Aceword up 22:31, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

My friend and I are planning to get ourselves a used Jeep Wrangler and fill up the back with snowballs. Then we'd drive around downtown and pelt them at everyone. We're not exactly planning on the knife part, though... ~SuperHamster Talk 22:59, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
The guy threatens a mother and child with a knife and I still find the story utterly hilarious... there is something very wrong here. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:06, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Banter. Webbtje (talk) 20:55, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

Info Request[edit]

Looking to see if anyone here knows anything about Danish Civil Defence Force Equipment from the 1960's. I've got one of their Greatcoats (brilliantly warm by the way) and found a picture of another one that somebody else owns that is two years younger (mine's from 1964, his is from 1962). But what's got me puzzled is that his coat has KL. I, 104M stamped on the inside, but mine says KL.II 120M. Does anyone know what the KL.xx and the yyM stand for?--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 05:35, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

A guess here but could kl stand for Kommunernes Landsforening which is the regional and municipal local governments of Denmark? If it's civil defence force it could be tied in with the local governments. 104M and 120M are military coat sizes. 104M is garment width 53 cm, shoulder 46 cm, 120M is garment width 59 cm, shoulder 48 cm. FreeThought (talk) 14:00, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Excellent. Thankyou, one provenance of a coat older than I am sorted out.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 15:46, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

The Catholic League goes on the attack[edit]

Bill Donohue and his insane group, the Catholic League, are targeting an art exhibit for criticising the Catholic church. Oh me, oh my! The Goonie 1 What's this button do? Uh oh.... 15:11, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

It's awesome that the Walker is showing some balls after the NPG caved. Doubly delightful is the fact Bill Donohue can rant and rave about art he considers degenerate all he wants, but all he's doing is drumming up publicity. Corry (talk) 16:35, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

FYI julian Assage is on newsnight[edit]

on as I typeAMassiveGay (talk) 22:45, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

Animutation[edit]

Who else knows about this (woefully forgotten) art form? --AmazingTechnicolorCheeseWedge (talk) 01:08, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

"There's a suggestion that you were rolling towards the police in your wheelchair; is that true?"[edit]

Link. Absolutely disgraceful. Does not deserve to work at the BBC again. Webbtje (talk) 10:38, 14 December 2010 (UTC)

Utterly revolting. One complaint just sent to the BBC. First time I've ever done that. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 11:32, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Get a grip. So he's a third rate newsreader - that's why he's on News24. What exactly are you complaining about? DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 13:00, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Are you serious? The questions in that interview were more like an interrogation! The newsreader pretty much implied that it was the guy's own fault he was dragged from his wheelchair. I expect much better from the BBC. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 13:11, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Erm, no he didn't. Are we watching the same clip here? I can only imagine you've never been interrogated The newsreader did a pathetic attempt at "giving both sides of the story", as he'll have been told to do so by his producers. What you should be complaining about is the Beeb broadcasting 10 minutes of cringeworthy tripe consisting of a hopeless interviewer and an interviewee with a severe speech impediment. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 13:24, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
So people with cerebral palsy should be kept offscreen in case they offend someone? –SuspectedReplicant retire me 13:30, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes because that's exactly what I said, you arse. You can do better than that. What I said was that if you're so keen to complain about something, complain that crap newsreaders and people with cerebral palsy does not good telly make. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 13:33, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
You just said it again for fuck's sake! When the people supposed to be protecting the public drag a disabled man from a wheelchair, it makes perfect sense to show that man on TV, and the fact his disability causes him to have a speech problem shouldn't enter into that decision. When the newsreader decides to imply that the man was taunting and threatening the police, I'll bloody well complain about it. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 13:41, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
For fuck's sake! So you are complaining because a newsreader/interviewer didn't agree 100% with his interviewee? Even the BBC will laugh at that one. You go for it mate. As for McIntyre, and this is the reason he hasn't made a complaint, he was indeed right at the front taunting police, and from my five minutes online research it seems that police were trying to clear that road for the cavalry, but he refused to move (you'll note that he appears to be the only fucker still there). The police then lifted him out of his wheelchair and carried him to safety, whilst his knobhead of a brother had a go at the copper who carried his wheelchair (see photo bottom row, 4th from left [1]. He was then reunited with his chair in place of safety where he wouldn't get trampled by horses. I really don't know what it's come to when I'm defending both the BBC and the filth, but you Sir appear like you are searching to be offended, and offended you will be. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 13:50, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
(EC) If the interview is cringeworthy tripe it's because the interviewer was so incompetent, patronising and insulting, and because he insisted on asking repeatedly and accusingly, not just once but three or four times during the interview, whether the victim had provoked the police, and not because the interviewee has a speech impediment (which I do not consider severe). WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 13:59, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
(EC)This is what my rant above is about. Think about what you don't see and why you're not shown it and never give your own side an easy ride. If the interview went as aggressively to a right-wing politician you hated you'd turn around and say he did a great job. Also, the accusation that disabled people shouldn't be shown on TV went beyond quote mining and into making shit up. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:01, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
(EC)You really must be watching a different clip. Refused to move? He can't move the chair on his own! Lifted him out of his wheelchair? Dragged him out of it and onto the ground, more like. You've obviously got your take on events, and I've got mine. As I said before, I've never complained to the BBC before but in this case I can't believe the way that interview was conducted. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 14:02, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
He was lifted from his wheelchair twice - the first time was clearing the road for mounted police, the second was the incident as filmed. See account here. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 14:06, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Maybe I'm cynical, but during a series of protests where there seem to be more Nikkon D500s than people it's remarkably convenient that this first incident (the "for his own safety" one) wasn't filmed and that Guardian report only seems to go on McIntyre's word that he was dragged out twice. But anyway, the likelyhood is that if someone has been dragged from the road once, they'll do it a second time and may well be less subtle about it. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:34, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
I would have dragged him. Do you know why? Because people are fucking heavy. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 14:40, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Maybe you're an apologist for police brutality. Occasionaluse (talk) 14:45, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Chaps, any chance discussions like this can avoid the descent into shit-flinging I keep seeing? Anyway, as for DeltaStar's assertion that he's a third rate newsreader - erm, no. Webbtje (talk) 14:50, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Not a chance, no. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:57, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
What would I do with all this shit? Occasionaluse (talk) 15:01, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
I hear Mr. Crapper's working on something. Webbtje (talk) 15:03, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Possibly. But I've also met many police officers, had a chat, interacted well with them, had some good experiences with the police and seen first hand what they've had to deal with on many occasions. I've never been attacked (the one time I was obscenely drunk and disorderly they were remarkably and admirably calm about the situation) or seen their bad side and find them to be agreeable people, and above all, still human - subject to the same flaws as the rest of us. My opinion in this case is as biased as anyone's as this could just be me and my experiences. But I am willing to recognise that so I want to see data about it. I.e., if police are all (or even mostly) violent and brutal thugs then why were only 17 out of 50,000 people treated for minor injuries at a protest march? Why don't they use water cannons and guns and CG gas canisters if all they want is violence? These - admittedly extreme and not widely applicable - opinions of the police don't add up with the statistical facts. If a police officer had come up with a story, people would treat it with suspicion, but because this guy is a protester (who writes in a style that would make a Soviet era propaganda writer blush, I should add) who tugs at the heart strings we aren't allowed to treat it with some suspicion? Especially when the video evidence is short and seems to cut off what happens before and after. Again I have to reiterate what I'm not saying; I'm not saying McIntyre is lying about his version of events, just that if I'm not allowed to be suspicious of anecdotes then we have failed as rationalists and are merely turning into political ideologues. Scarlet A.pngmoral 15:19, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
"if police are all (or even mostly) violent and brutal thugs" . . . ? Wow, that's one hell of a strawman you've built yourself there. & From someone who has gone on rants along the lines of "respond to what people say, not what you think they say" in many places on this page. Tell me, who has been arguing that all/most police are thugs? WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:44, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
No one on RW, thankfully. But it has been the attitude of several of my excessively liberal (as in, the ones who don't seem to think about it) friends via Facebook. This is what has set off my ranting, I should have made it clearer. Scarlet A.pngmoral 01:36, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm trying to find a study I once read, showing that the vast majority of people in law enforcement/corrections are violent by nature. Occasionaluse (talk) 15:51, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Given the stanford prison experiment took random people, I'd suspect that violence isn't necessarily there to begin with but is in fact somewhat encouraged by an environment in which abuse goes unnoticed or unpunished. ONE / TALK 16:42, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Well, the Stanford experiment has some issues, but generally it's accepted that most people will conform if pushed to do so, even to violent acts. However, this does apply to everyone equally and not just those with official power (such as the police) how many of those setting fires and breaking windows at Millbank Tower would have been fairly mild-mannered only a few hours ago? I suppose we might never know exactly who they all were and why they did it, but this is why mass events cause so many problems, reason flies out of the window and you have massive mob mentality take over. Police, students, football fans, revellers will all operate under the laws of mob psychology in these positions. This is possibly a good reason to shun mass protests because it gets people too uppity (and not to mention they're usually ineffective, what exactly were the G8 guys protesting for or against, again?). Instead you want to appointed people in rooms talking to each other, not on the street screaming because it can turn ugly. And whether or not it was only a minority guilty of turning it ugly, that's what it will be remembered for and will breed more violence. Scarlet A.pngmoral 18:08, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Your argument seems to be "police officers are attacked on the job, and as such any police brutality is forgivable", which is far stupider than I'd expect from you. Bastard stupid Hoover! 20:33, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
That's not my argument at all. Scarlet A.pngmoral 01:34, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
It's more like blaming the victim than forgiving the police. And it's about as stupid as I'd expect. Occasionaluse (talk) 14:14, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
It's not that either. Fucks sake. All I'm saying is that anecdotes are shitty pieces of evidence to draw conclusions from. I've seen people say "so-and-so was hurt by police therefore the police are all up for violence!!". Read McIntyres blog on the subject, everything is the "the police are up for violence" "the police were out for provoking us". This just doesn't wash with the statistics that show tens of thousands of protesters and barely dozens of injuries. I have REPEATEDLY stated that this does not justify violence on behalf of either side. I have REPEATEDLY stated that I do not condone attacking protesters or police. We need to instead look at all sides, what the causes are and, importantly, some better statistics. My point revolves entirely around the unfair and selective reporting of anecdotes to back up claims. Did my local protest where there were no violent acts or arrests get widely reported in the media? No, it didn't. What about the stories where protesters have got on and talked with police officers? They haven't been reported either. We wouldn't stand for this sort of reasoning from alternative medicine advocates, hardcore conservatives, gun nuts, astrologers and UFOlogists so why should we stand for this reasoning from left-wing activists? Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:30, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

I doubt all cops are bad (hell, my mom was one), but after shit like the RCMP agent provocateurs getting caught in the act in Montabello, police at the summit in Toronto perpetuating a number of abuses (including enforcing non-existant laws) and the rather nasty lawsuits and such appearing in Ottawa lately (look up the Stacey Bonds video and the judge's comments about it, for instance), I can see how the reputation of the force as a whole is tarnished. Especially given the notorious difficulty getting guys like that punished at all, let alone fired or arrested. And so it becomes a lot more believable as time goes by when allegations like that surface. --Kels (talk) 15:13, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Last night, I talked to a friend who is a veteran of many political protests about this. He confidently stated that he has never been on a march / demonstration where there wasn't at least one attempt by the police to goad the crowd into doing something illegal so they would have an excuse to make an arrest. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 18:11, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
At some point, the police have it coming. If you saw some jackass pepper spray some hippie lady for trying to give him a flower, would you stand for it? What would you do? Call the police? What if the police are the perpetrators? Would you kick the guy's ass? I would. What would you do if someone hit the guy serving up justice in the back of the head with a baton? I'd probably throw a fucking brick at him or try to set his car on fire, because apparently there is no one else who is going to do anything about it. The general public is every bit as justified in escalation of force as the "authorities". If you don't get that, you're a fucking bitch. Occasionaluse (talk) 18:23, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
There's also the fact that the police are supposed to be better than the protesters. Yes, there are protesters, rioters, assholes etc... who will attack the police for no reason, stab them, shoot them and so on. But that's why there are police in the first place; they're supposed to be better than those people. The point I'm trying to make here is that one cop being an asshole and unnecessarily roughing up some innocent protesters is "worth" (in shock/outrage value) 10-20 people attacking a cop. Yes, cops are human too, but they're supposedly trained to not act human when they're out being a cop. They're the police; not a man in a uniform, a police officer. That's why acts of police aggression get more press (in certain circles) than acts of protester aggression. X Stickman (talk) 19:32, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Looking at his blog, the guy seems to be pretty crazy. The story I linked to strikes me as being similar to stories you see on right-wing blogs and sites about how intelligent right-wingers outwit dumb left-wingers - i.e. made up. These pictures of him - complete with a description of what was going on - are pretty condemning. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 16:21, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
The more this goes on (not just here), the more I'm reminded of Plato's story of the blind men describing the elephant. Just sayin'. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 16:27, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Looks photoshopped. Scarlet A.pngmoral 18:02, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

BBC Response[edit]

I got an email back from the BBC regarding the complaint I mentioned above. This is the full reply, and you obviously need to read the blog post too:

Dear Mr Herbert
Thank you for your feedback regarding the BBC News Channel broadcast on 13 December 2010.
We appreciate some viewers felt Ben Brown was too challenging during his interview with student tuition fees protestor Jody McIntrye.
The Controller for the BBC News Channel Kevin Bakhurst has written a blog in response to these concerns, it can be seen at:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/theeditors/2010/12/interview_with_jody_mcintyre.html
Thanks again for taking the time to contact us.
Kind Regards
BBC Audience Services

I can't say I'm particularly impressed, either with the anonymous email response, or the blog post. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 22:43, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

Maybe that's because you're a pathetic little middle-class student without a fucking clue as to what the big wide world is like outside the students' union or Mummy and Daddy's nice detached house. "Maybe you're an apologist for police brutality?" - twats like you do more to insult victims or real police brutality than any nasty copper ever could. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 14:01, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Calm down. "Maybe you're an apologist for police brutality." was written by Occasionaluse, not SuspectedReplicant.--ZooGuard (talk) 14:12, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
For the record, DeltaStar, I'm 37, and my parents live on a terrace. You aren't scoring very highly at the moment, I'm afraid. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 14:27, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Didn't seem to be too bad a response to me. But I think there is a danger of getting two different issues confused.
  • The incident itself and whether the police action was proportionate or justified.
  • The subsequent BBC interview with the disabled individual at the centre of the incident.
Some saw video of the incident and decided that it was sufficient evidence that the police were guilty of an incredible misuse of their powers. For these viewers the interviewee a victim and the BBC should have treated him with sympathy and taken everything he said as true or beyond question because the case against the police was proved. For them the interview was a brutal farce as the BBC dealt with him like a person having just one side of the story and whose statements should be challenged.
Others saw the video as a short snatch from within a much larger event with no obvious before and after and felt that it would need to be understood in the broader context of events. For them the interview was a reasonable attempt to obtain and challenge the point of view of one of the participants.--BobSpring is sprung! 16:33, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Fuck me sideways, what happened to not being a cunt? Is the notion forgotten as soon as disagreement arises? Webbtje (talk) 16:51, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
I agree pretty much with Bob's assessment there. I have to say I'm firmly with the second group. Somehow I don't see why being disabled should give you an easy ride from the press. They're supposed to ask the challenging and difficult questions of people, not fawn over them like children. Brown was just doing his job as a BBC news employee, and it would have been a waste of time to do anything different. I'm pretty sure if that had happened to a BNP activist, disability or not, everyone would be jizzing over how Brown gave him a good, challenging interview. Scarlet A.pngmoral 17:54, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, I apologise there. Not only was I a cunt, I was inaccurate with my assumptions and I incorrectly attributed a comment. Sorry. I still do fail to see what the interviewer did wrong, and I also stand by my assertion that the shouts of "police brutality" are misplaced at best. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 17:59, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

6 Real Historic Battles Decided by Divine Intervention[edit]

http://www.cracked.com/article_18894_6-real-historic-battles-decided-by-divine-intervention.html I guess we're no longer permitted to get pissed when a story resorts to a deus ex machina.Ryantherebel (talk) 15:00, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

So freak weather = divine intervention now? I'm discounting the bees, because if you're going to go blundering around the East African bush, you are going to run into some very nasty fuckers, including African Killer Bees. --Ψ GremlinFale! 15:39, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm SURE there is no recall bias by soldiers already inclined to assume that god was on their side as they wrote letters, reports, etc. Statistically speaking, as often as we humans find ourselves fighting each other, it should be no surprise that weird weather, etc. occasionally occurs mid-battle. It's no more divine intervention than when somebody wins the lottery. Corry (talk) 15:52, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm surprised the Angels of Mons didn't get a mention, or the original divine intervention, the kami kaze that fucked up Genghis' (Sorry Mr Khan!) invasion plans. --Ψ GremlinPraat! 16:02, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Aren't you reading a little much into an article from Cracked? It's not like they're presenting a serious theological statement; they just went with "divine intervention" because it's more attention getting than "battles decided by weird, unexpected events". MDB (talk) 16:13, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
They're using it as in comparison to movies and plots that have contrived deus ex machina endings - we're often tricked into thinking such contrivances can only be fictional (and the result of sloppy writing) when, in fact, such things do happen in reality. It's quite clear in the introduction. Scarlet A.pngmoral 16:17, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Indeed. To give a non-military example, imagine if a writer created a character who was romantically involved with two men who both ran for President, and she eventually became First Lady. She was raised in privilege, but not in a "political family". That would sound ridiculous, only possible in a soap opera, until you learn Mary Todd Lincoln did just that. MDB (talk) 16:40, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Reading even more into it, I guess that's because humans have a strong preference for narratives (historical as well as fictional) that develop within a strict causal framework. And we've got a notable tendency to ascribe events and outcomes, however random they may be, to some form of human or quasi-human agency. Consider conspiracy theorists who think that everything in the world happens in accordance with the grand scheme of some shadowy cabal, or religious nuts who are unable to comprehend that we're not some special creation of god but just one of many possible ways to fill an ecological niche. These are the most extreme cases, but it's a bias that is deeply ingrained in our consciousness and incredibly hard to overcome. I remember having read an evolutionary explanation for this somewhere that basically argued that for our ancestors, it was much safer to overestimate the degree to which events around them were shaped by scheming on the part of their fellows. Röstigraben (talk) 16:42, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Given that one of the examples given was aiding the Germans against the the British - that cannot be divine. Diabolical, maybe... ;-) Jack Hughes (talk) 17:22, 15 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, that's pretty much it. Ascribing causes to things is pretty much part of common sense because it simply just takes too long to reason things from first principles. Your brain doesn't need to process Newtons laws to know that you will fall if you jump off a cliff, for the most obvious example. There's also a hindsight problem too. We can work out causes after an event (Challenger's o-rings, poor preparedness for Hurricane Katrina, the assassination of Franz Ferdinand for the First World War and so on) but before an event we're just stumped by masses of useless data that predict things that don't happen and probabilities that are completely unreliable. So we have developed this illusion, thanks to our over-reliance on hindsight, that cause and effect is deterministic, that A leads to B and only to B, with certainty. Freak events, especially natural ones that don't have socio-economic causes, therefore mess with our heads. We can't make a causal connection (even if physical causality is still intact) and therefore jump on "divine intervention" as the explanation; when really, it's just randomness playing with our senses. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:27, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
I think it's highly unfair of God to only help people who win.--BobSpring is sprung! 17:13, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
But he does work in mysterious ways... Scarlet A.pngmoral 19:21, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, but he always ensures that he comes out good in the history books by being on the winning side.--BobSpring is sprung! 19:38, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

I disagree with Armondikov's use of Katrina as "hindsight". We were all watching that monster approach the Gulf and NO for at least seven days before it struck. Only the incompetent claim "no saw it coming". J L Blobkindeist (talk) 04:32, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

In which case you've most likely misunderstood. It still constitutes a Black Swan event, it doesn't matter if you actually saw the hurricane coming as that's not the point at all. There were specific route causes identified that people "should have known about", such as wp:2005 levee failures in Greater New Orleanslevee design flaws among other things. These are happily identified in hindsight, but not before as they don't constitute a salient problem. Scarlet A.pngmoral 18:13, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
For instance, see all of the historical discussion here, where people are making points and counterpoints trying to establish some sort of narrative order to historical events, as if they would have been predictable. You can't make sense of history by just looking at what did happen (or you get arguments like this, which are entirely in vain), you also have too look at what didn't happen and what possibly could have happened - and what information was available at the time to make that assessment. A nuclear bomb could go off tomorrow in a major city in a terrorist attack. A few months down the line we might know exactly who did it, why they did it and how it was pulled off, and people will question "Why wasn't something done? We had all those signs!". But that certainly wouldn't change the fact that at this minute right here, we have no freaking clue that it was or wasn't going to happen. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:42, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

The atomic weight of hydrogen is now [1.0078; 1.0082].[edit]

IUPAC, the people who name and number the elements, now have decided to put ranges for 10 elements on the periodic table, with more to come. [2] While honest, inconvenient. sterile syringe 01:42, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

On the bright side, more wiggle room for people sitting chemistry exams. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 01:44, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Is this to allow for especially energetic electrons? J L Blobkindeist (talk) 03:58, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Oh, I see, it's to deal with naughty neutrons playing where they shouldn't. J L Blobkindeist (talk) 04:01, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
"Naughty Neutrons"? That sounds like a porno video for chemistry PhD students. MDB (talk) 12:32, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
(EC, but I'm glad I spotted that comment, MDB...)It's regarding the mixture of isotopes in a particular sample (notably only the stable ones, so it's not been proposed for Uranium, for example). These will average out slightly differently depending on what you're looking at. The ratio of 13-C and 12-C differs slightly depending whether the material is organic or inorganic, for example. It's only slight, varying minutely around 1% 13-C, but the natural abundances do alter and this is important in carbon dating and other forms of analysis. Although isotopes are generally considered to be chemically identical, there are slight differences. This is because mass alters the strength of chemical bonds, and so you have a slight statistical weighting as to whether that bond will react or not. (I'm currently supervising an undergraduate experiment where you can see the difference between HCl and DCl, and on the really high resolution instruments we can see the spectral differences between D-35Cl and D-37Cl). In some cases, notably uranium enrichment, you can selectively activate one isotope over another by tuning a laser to that precise bond strength - so essentially a similar thing happens in nature depending on energy, conditions or whether the reaction is photochemical etc. etc. So the overall average mass of that atom will change in different systems, hence the range. Scarlet A.pngmoral 12:37, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Very interesting. I'd expect HC1 and DC1 to behave differently, since the H atom is only half the mass of the "D" atom. Moving higher up the table I'd expect fewer to vanishingly small differences at the chemical level, but this is still fascinating. J L Blobkindeist (talk) 04:29, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
The differences do become smaller up the periodic table (just calculate the reduced masses to see how small). But they're still there and can be seen when your detection is sensitive enough. And since we have mass-spec down to nearly a dozen significant figures, we can still spot. Scarlet A.pngmoral 16:49, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

User:September Storm[edit]

I'd like to contact an admin about this. This account was created today, and it's done nothing other than edit articles right I've edited them (like they're just here to follow me around). They've also revert my changes to one article without any real reason given, and made snarky comments when I asked them to explain the revert. It seems like they're just trolling, so I'd like an admin to intervene, thanks.--ElvisHairDude420 (talk) 09:06, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

You realise that every other user here is an admin right? You've managed to begin a talk page dialogue with this user, you might want to exhaust that first. -- Iscariot Andy Schlafly for Congress 2012! 10:11, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Abrasive edit comments are nothing new. There's nothing that can be done as "policy" to stop it, although I think most people look down on users who do it. Scarlet A.pngmoral 19:19, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Don't know that I did anything "wrong", but Elvis has only been around for a week and a half, so their accusations of newbieism seem a bit trifling, at best. Also, on their talk page I see "I have reverted a few of your edits as they were either, altering a quote (intellectually dishonest), or serious and specific claims unsupported by a citation." left by a long-time member. Forgive me for viewing the Elvis Impersonator's edits with a jaundiced eye. I will now read the new user guide left on my talk page... September Storm (talk) 04:24, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Forgive me for viewing your reversions with a jaundiced eye, since you've done this kind of thing before, Human. If you revert someone with an edit summary like that, I'll revert you regardless of the quality of the edit. And please put your smelly socks back in the drawer. -- Nx / talk 05:23, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Meh, if an edit war breaks out, fight it out at the talkpage or let the users take it there. Jumping in and stirring things up even more is a stupid way to go, IMO. Scotch (talk) 17:10, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Forgive me for not knowing what you are talking about. Does anyone? Who is this "Nx" person? Do they treat all newcomers as rudely as this? Oh well, I guess those who know their way around know, and those of us who don't, don't. September Storm (talk) 05:59, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Obvious sock is obvious. -- Nx / talk 06:06, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Some people are just no good at sockpuppetry. Ah well. Scotch (talk) 17:10, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

X People Y[edit]

Alright so I know that YouTube comments contain probably the majority of the world's stupid (sharing with Yahoo Answers), but what the fuck is going on with the latest trend of people posting comments like "20 people had no childhood" and "1,345 people were bored by this" on every video? What have I missed? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 11:39, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

It's a comment on the number of people who disliked a video. For instance, the "20 people had no childhood" quote might be pointing out that 20 people disliked a classic Sesame Street clip. MDB (talk) 12:00, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Too much youtube has ruined your brains. There are no such comments on classier videos. --85.78.23.211 (talk) 12:06, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
My last bout of "I'm better than everyone else in the universe" came after reading YouTube comments. They will destroy you. I actually disabled the comments on one of my videos for six months because it was getting too retarded to stand. Scarlet A.pngmoral 12:21, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
If you ever want to destroy your faith in humanity, a few hours of Yahoo! Answers and Youtube comments will do it. MDB (talk) 12:25, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
The best ones are the comments you find on videos of people covering well known songs. "omfg this is soufcking shit! theyre nuttin compared to (insert original artist here)" followed by some wanna-be pussy peacemaker saying, "can't we all just enjoy the music? it's a tribute to (insert original artist here). Jeez!" and so forth. SJ Debaser 13:22, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
I stand by my idea of having a quick IQ test before you are allowed to comment on anything on the internet. Anyone scoring below 70 gets blocked. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 13:47, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Well, that would shut down Sarah Palin's Twitter feed right quick. #rimshot# MDB (talk) 14:05, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Try the videos of any female fronted metal band. You get that sort of shit in excessive abundance. And I swear, people will shout "THEY'RE NOTHING LIKE EVANESCENCE!!!11" before anyone has actually made a comparison to Evanescence. Now I have to wonder what is easier; installing a quick and accurate IQ test to weed out posters, or have a Javascript filter them out. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:25, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, but on Evanescence videos do they say "THEY'RE NOTHING LIKE LACUNA COIL!!!11"? - David Gerard (talk) 14:46, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Still my favorite YouTube conversation. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:52, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
No, they still keep on saying how they shouldn't compare them to Amy Lee. It's just a knee-jerk automated reaction. Scarlet A.pngmoral 16:04, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Ha! And there's me saying I was thinking of switching the comments off my YouTube channel, and here I am saying that I did! Scarlet A.pngmoral 16:06, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Youtube comments are quite educational actually. It's such an example of people going STUFFILIKE > STUFFULIKE. You go to music video A, you see commenters bashing band B. You go to music video B, you see commenters bashing band A. And in seeing that behavior again and again for the most trivial things, you reach a zen like state of understanding and pitty for those small minds that can't see the wider picture and the patterns of human behavior. After all they do it out of love. Kinda. [/philosophical] Anyways, if you use Chrome, there's a "no youtube comments" extention. Sen (talk) 18:29, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm not interested in no youtube comments, just no retarded ones... But yeah, it's good to read to try and get in the heads of these people. Not that I'd want to spend to much time in there... Scarlet A.pngmoral 19:16, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
"it's good to read to try and get in the heads of these people" I imagine it's quite roomy. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 22:09, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Just about enough room to swing a lolcat. Scarlet A.pngmoral 16:40, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

Should have known better[edit]

One of the wife's ex lecturers made the national news. Seriously, as a criminal law lecturer shouldn't you know that everything you do on the intertubes can be traced? Esp. downloading kiddypr0n over the space of ten years. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 22:07, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

...with a girl like you... Emerald (talk) 04:37, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Retarded policy suggestions that works, part two[edit]

Hypothesis: if congress implements a rule of prison-like session (e.g. nobody in the Senate gets any food, drink, washroom breaks, sleep, etc until the stuff in the Senate agenda is completed) a LOT more would get done. Discuss. ThiehLooking for potion recipes 02:38, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

I guess, but since no one would agree to that (because it's ridiculous) what is there to discuss?--ADtalkModerator 03:56, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Or reintroduce the "real" filibuster, instead of the "pretend" lame version we now have? J L Blobkindeist (talk) 04:13, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Maybe someone should put that on a ballot measure perhaps to troll those congresspeople IRL. To avoid No True Scotsman, what exactly is a "real" filibuster? ThiehWho is Terry Koeckritz anyways? 08:24, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
A "real" filibuster involves Senators standing up and talking endlessly, until there are a sufficient number to vote for cloture (end of discussion). The current "rule" allows any one Senator to "say" they will filibuster, and that is enough to kill cloture, and hence, a vote. J L Blobkindeist (talk) 08:44, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
In the old days, they did things like read the phone book aloud, to an empty chamber. MDB (talk) 14:32, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
There have been cases of international talks with a fixed deadline being artificially extended by stopping the clocks or similar ruses.  Lily Inspirate me. 16:47, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
If you've ever seen the old Jimmy Stewart movie Mr. Smith Goes to Washington ends with a real filibuster (often called a hard filibuster). Since the filibuster, theoretically, a belief that there hasn't been enough debate on the matter, the old rules said that debate had to continue, meaning that the opponents of the bill had to keep talking. They couldn't stop or they would lose the floor and the bill could be voted on. They changed that during the Johnson administration I think. SirChuckBDMorris for new Jinx! 20:56, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
It goes back as far as LBJ's administration? I thought it more recent than that. One of the massive filibusters was against the Civil Rights Act, and that was during LBJ's Presidency, at least. MDB (talk) 21:23, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
During LNJ's admin, the requirement was lessened to end a filibuster, IIRC, from 75% to 66.6%, in exchange for some other deal, which I cannot remember. The filibuster has a l-o-n-g history in the US Senate. The current "compromise" is a travesty. As Blobkin said above, now one idiot can kill a bill, without any effort at all. Emerald (talk) 04:36, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Dead Space[edit]

Just finished playing Dead Space. Hells yes, mutha fuck what a game. 7thchamber 06:47, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

I know of one person who disagrees with you strenuously. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 08:42, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
He's right, it wasn't really scary. Now Doom3, which uses the same tactic to scare the player, at least managed to get me to throw the mouse away a few times with its enemies behind the wall jumping out at you trick. -- Nx / talk 09:14, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Doom3 was scary as f*** to start with, but kept using the same trick so after a while it lost a bit of its effectiveness. The game Yahtzee found scariest recently was Amnesia, The Dark Descent. I haven't played it myself, but it looks quite good. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 10:11, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
I used to play Resident Evil 2 incessantly on the PS when I was at uni. I had to stop when I started getting zombie panic attacks. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:33, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
One game that scared the bejeezus out of me (and I'm going to date myself horribly) was Phantasmagoria. That scene with the cat in the barn... --Ψ Gremlin話しなさい 10:45, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
I haven't played this game, and never will, but the correct terminology for this kind of thing is "spring-loaded cats". Enjoy the next 3 hours clicking random links at tv tropes. You're welcome. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 17:45, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
God fucking damn it, I never said it was fucking scary. I enjoyed the mutha fucking game though. Doom 3, now that was hellish scary - almost unplayable. Dead Space was just plain fun. The rest of you can go eat penis. 7thchamber 18:30, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Actually I liked Dead Space better than Doom 3. -- Nx / talk 19:04, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

Jeeves I hate you sooooooooooooooo much, right now. --Ψ GremlinParla! 19:15, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

Dead Space is far more entertaining than Doom 3 however Doom is scarier. 7thchamber 19:48, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

Video Game Terror[edit]

I will say the best game I've ever played, in terms of true scares, was Fatal Frame, available on the PS2 and XBOX. I'm 24 and I still won't play that thing after 10pm. SirChuckBCall the FBI 21:02, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

The only game that ever scared me was Doom 3. I am 30 but still my back crawls at the thought...Ace McfuckingAwesome 21:07, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm a big scaredy cat. I sleep with the lights on. I hate watching scary movies. However, I can honestly say I have never EVER been scared by a video game. Not once. Dead Space, Amnesia, F.E.A.R., Katamari Damacy, Etc., they just don't scare me. I Have a Dead Space curse though. Every time I play it, something bad happens to me. The first time I got demoted from my position at work. The second time I got a speeding ticket that cost me a grand. Senator Harrison (talk) 23:31, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
And the third time Ace will fuck you in the ear. Ace McfuckingAwesome 00:05, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps you shouldn't play it in work or while driving then, hur hur. Vulpius (talk) 00:12, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
I had to get drunk to complete the "The Cradle" level in Thief: Deadly Shadows, but then I am a huge pussy who doesn't really understand the concept of paying to be scared. X Stickman (talk) 01:34, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Google labs phrase frequency search[edit]

Been checking out Google's new phrase frequency search in literature. Interesting, on words like "creationism" and "intelligent design" - creationism skyrockets in 1978-79, while Intelligent design takes longer but goes up around 1996-97. Any theories as to what exactly caused the late 1970s upward spike in Creationism? I note "atheism" and "paganism" reach the lowest points of interest during this period as well. FreeThought (talk) 03:43, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

Sounds like a rather Schlafly-esque approach to linguistic analysis!--

Kriss AkabusiAAAWOOOGAAAR!!1 10:43, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

lol! Occasionaluse (talk) 16:21, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
People here appear obsessed with Mr. Schlafly. This is the third different thread where someone has brought up his name in response (unless they are all socks of the same person, which is always possible). I'm certainly not Schlafly, if that's what is being implied. FreeThought (talk) 11:03, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
I certainly don't think it's a Schlaflyesque approach. Andy was cherrypicking his words & phrases to fit his ridiculous "insight". As for Creationism it only starts to become an issue with the 1975 Daniel v. Waters case which ruled that teaching it contravened the Establishment Clause in the First Amendment of the US constitution. Intelligent Design only appears because of the rejection of creationism in Edwards v. Aguillard (1987) and ID was the Trojan horse to sneak it back in. ID was unknown before Of Pandas and People was published in '89 and then the Discovery Institute started promoting it in the mid nineties which fits in with your finding.  Lily Inspirate me. 16:33, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
It reminds me more of Andy attempting to say that such and such a Bible translation was more liberal on the basis of how much it uses the word 'hell'. Word counts are only going to give you superficial indications at best. I think you are better off reading full sentences at the very least, or ideally complete pages or even entire books!--

Kriss AkabusiAAAWOOOGAAAR!!1 17:24, 17 December 2010 (UTC)

...yeah, comparing everything to Conservapedia is never going to end, is it. *sigh* Scarlet A.pngmoral 18:14, 17 December 2010 (UTC)
Schlafly has turned into a bogeyman for some users. Too much energy has been wasted on him already. GooRoo (talk) 10:07, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

A very Ace Xmas....[edit]

Shit, you bastards are lucky I have lost the cord that connects the camera to the PC. Hot fucking damn, Mrs Mcfucking Awesome is away watching Blondie perform at a winery leaving little old Ace to his own devices. Drink Drink Drink heavily with my flashing disco jesus doing the rounds on the turntable while Mr. Oizo drops the shit on my stereo. This is a fine fine fine fine fine sight to my jaundice eyes.....word. You poor fuckers. Ace McfuckingAwesome 11:28, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Hey, Ace, look after yourself. Have a nice Christmas, you & the missus. RagTopGone sailing 11:34, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Hey Lynne, come over. It's party time...word. Ace McfuckingAwesome 11:45, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
I think a sexy party is the only way to go. El TajDon't make me do stuff 11:46, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Bahahhahahaha word. Sex. Ace McfuckingAwesome 11:57, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

MRI studies of crank science[edit]

Does anyone here know of any MRI research that has been done in trying to understand why cranks fixate on a particular problem and cling to their beliefs in the face of overwhelming opposing evidence? I think it would be interesting to put a crank "mathematician" or "scientist" into an MRI, have them explain their crank theories and argue against challenges to their theories and see what areas of the brain light up. I believe crank math/science is a bit different a malfunction than other forms of willful ignorance, such as creationism. With creationism, the motivation for being willfully ignorant may often be a fear of punishment for entertaining forbidden ideas, but with cranks who focus on math and science, it seems to be a fixation originating from a false "AHA" experience that embeds itself in the psyche. I would be very interested to find out what research has been done in this area. Can anybody point me in the right direction? — Unsigned, by: Brainhead / talk / contribs

My extensive knowledge of MRI scans, derived from watching every single episode of House, suggests that you can't talk while in an MRI scan or it disrupts the test. Anyone even suggesting that House could be wrong will be blocked. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 12:21, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Haha. I love House. It does seem like they suggest that, though it may just be a plot device. I'm no expert despite having also watched every House episode, but intuitively, it seems to me that mapping brain functions with radioactive tags in an MRI does not require the same level of precision as looking for micron diameter tumors. Perhaps talking is okay for the former type of test.
My extensive viewing of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit leads me to believe that brain activity (as correlated to emotional or cognitive activity) is mapped more easily when the subject is passively exposed to stimuli, such as slide shows of skinny-dippers. Perhaps an audio track of the above-mentioned theoretical explanations or arguments could be used to light up the relevant blobs. Since the sound of the crank's own voice may carry its own (presumably sweet) affective load, relevant experimental controls would need to be applied. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 13:38, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Trent may know some. He's currently working on stuff regarding dopamine in the brain and its role in learning (from what I gather, at least). However, I wouldn't put too much trust in MRI to reveal what you're looking for. It's good for non-invasive mapping of the brain, but it's not the magical mind-reading tool some pop science and medical TV shows make it out to be. In principle, you can talk in an MRI so long as it's your jaw that moves and your head is locked into the coil firmly enough not to disrupt the position of your head. You can certainly undergo fMRI while watching images and listening to things and these studies have been done with a political slant. Trying picking some odd combinations of key words and running them through PubMed. The abstracts should be available. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:55, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Abel Danger[edit]

Can anyone tell me what this site's all about? "Abel Danger is a resource & archive for the David Hawkins & Field McConnell research material." - is it connected with the tea party(?) but what's an 'Onion Router'? Oompa loompa (talk) 17:47, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

It's a networked kitchen appliance. --I'm bored (talk) 18:55, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Gender observations in science writing[edit]

If we take the usual gender stereotypes (i.e., girls are all kittens and rainbows and boys are all "me man, me roar!") at face value, we can assume that you could pick up these attributes in a person's writing style. So when I'm reading and marking 2nd year undergraduate reports, I'd expect that the girls would use flowery language and increased use of the first person (i.e., more emotive) while the boys would be far dryer and distant in their writing. This is not a sexist opinion, it is a testable statement - and I'm in a position to actually test it - so please, no whining about sexism, that's not the point at all. There's a difference between a discriminatory assertion that is maintained despite evidence, and a hypothesis that can be tested with evidence. Anyway, I've spent too long on this caveat already, I'm just covering my ass from silly time-wasting criticisms; just don't complain about sexism, as if you do you've missed the point entirely.

Due to some staffing issues, I've been able to read and grade every report done on a particular undergraduate practical and I've actually observed the opposite of what the stereotype suggests. Pretty much all the cases of first person language and vague emotive pleas come from male students, while female students have picked up the formal, fairly dry, and precise language of science communication. Consulting with another postgrad, they seem to concur with this observation that girls write more formally and less emotively. The difference is slight, however, as once they've cracked the stylistic barrier both genders perform and write the same way, which you can see in formal professional writing where you really can't tell who has written what. I'll see at the end of the course if there's a grade disparity between genders.

Our current hypothesis to explain the writing style stems from the fact that girls are known to outperform boys in academic subjects (except for maths) and thus their English will be better. The female students seem to have picked up the hints about what the writing style should be from how other sources are written (they're not given too specific instructions, this is a learn by experience sort of thing) and put more care and precision into their report writing. The male students, on the other hand, seem to be a little more free and lackadaisical with their style, writing as if they were just speaking to you rather than reporting to you in written form; hence they're more likely to slip into informal, first person and imprecise writing. I'll get around to quantifying this one day, although I've yet to figure out how. Any other hypotheses or things to look for are welcome. Scarlet A.pngmoral 15:52, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Blah blah. TL; DR etc --Idiot number 59 (talk) 16:59, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Twat.  Lily Inspirate me. 19:48, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Whatever. Forget I said anything. Scarlet A.pngmoral 19:50, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Do a search for every mainspace edit on this site that uses the word "you" and correlate them with the theoretical genders of the people who wrote them. Oh, wait. Nevermind. Dirty White Boy (talk) 05:33, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
That wouldn't be an aim because the mainspace isn't designed to be formally written; indeed, it can be instructive as well as reportitative (??) so odd tenses are often appropriate. The idea of doing it with undergraduate reports is that it's a bit more controlled. Scarlet A.pngmoral 11:00, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
OK, so let's say this is an interesting observation. Before worrying about possible causes or implications, though, it must be tested more rigorously. That is, to blind the data-gathering as much as possible. The papers should be read by people who have never had any contact with the writers in any (known) way, and classified. Once a large enough database has been built, the results of the judgment calls can be compared with the gender (and whatever else we gather - age, etc.) data to determine if there is at least a correlation. And so on. But you knew this. Blancmange (talk) 20:21, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes. I would need to quantify it. But before you do any statistical analysis you need to know what you're predicting and how to test for it. If you correlate everything with everything else by doing the data gathering first you run the risk of the Texas Sharpshooter problem. Scarlet A.pngmoral 22:31, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

Long Bets[edit]

If any of you follow Long Bets, you might be interested in RationalWiki:Predictions. Hopefully you'll be interested, even if you're don't follow it! Thought it'd be an interesting little thing for us all to take part in, and maybe even put WIGO buttons to vote "agree" or "disagree," allowing us to build up a little archive of correct and incorrect projections.

If people like it, and throw out some projections... rather than my measly two, then we'll put in the WIGO buttons, and I guess the goal is to be correct, but have lots of disagreement. Any thoughts? DalekEXTERMINATE 22:29, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

I think the only thing that could come of this is that we'll prove Nassim Nicolas Taleb right. Scarlet A.pngmoral 00:41, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
I keep seeing his book and thinking "I really ought to read this..." Seme Blue 05:35, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
I predict it will be edited three times in the next three years. Does such a page really belong in the project space? Sister golden hair (talk) 05:18, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
YES DAMN IT! Do!!! (but yes, it would belong in a project space, or perhaps essay space. I don't think it matters too much) Scarlet A.pngmoral 10:47, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
It pretty obviously should be in fun shouldn't it? After all it is, ... well, ... a bit of fun.--BobSpring is sprung! 20:31, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

A perspective on design[edit]

An interesting footnote from The Black Swan for those in the "evolution vs creation" debates.

Most of the debate between creationists and evolutionary theorists (of which I do not partake) lies in the following: creationists believe that the world comes from some form of design while evolutionary theorists see the world as a result of random changes by an aimless process. But it is hard to look at a computer or a car and consider them the result of aimless process. Yet they are.

I should elaborate slightly. The entire section to which this is a footnote is about unpredictable scientific advances. For instance, the invention of the Internet (the prototypical "positive" Black Swan) or the wheel or penicillin. All serendipitous discoveries. No one sat down in a lab and thought "this is the product I'm going to make" and thus it was done, on time, on schedule and exactly as envisioned. Facebook was never on DARPA's drawing board and its unlikely that an inventor in early civilisation sat in a mud hut and said "today I will invent the wheel". The laser was originally designed as something to split light beams with, and seemed fundamentally pointless but today is used for countless parts of technology. Our modern world is almost entirely the product of aimless chance and design, even in our most heavily assembled technology, is just an illusion. ID advocates would be advised to remember how many of their technological analogues of design did, in fact, evolve. Scarlet A.pngmoral 10:55, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

The analogy is always tricky though, because computers and cars didn't breed, pass on their slightly mutated DNA, and hence had a differing chance of survival. In some ways it confuses the issue as much as the IDers do. sterile syringe 14:15, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Bangkok may be seen as an example of spontaneous order. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 14:33, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
The point is intent of design. ID posits that the designer has a plan and an intention which is followed. Their analogy works by saying that cells are complex and that bodies are complex and that life, in general, is complex. This is the basis behind Paley's Watch. That complexity equals design, which therefore implies a designer. But the analogy with technology becomes difficult when you realise even the things that we have designed, may not have any co-ordinated intent behind them. Therefore the entire complexity analogy begins to fail because their examples of intentional design don't actually feature intentional design. Scarlet A.pngmoral 15:45, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Think you need to be careful about accepting that evolution is an "aimless process". It certainly has no objective such as "build humans" but that is not the same as "aimless". It is driven by various such things such as arms races between predator and prey, the need to adapt to a changing environment and sexual selection. The combination of these things produces the illusion of design as, at any given point in time, successfull amimals are moulded by these drives to be a pretty good match for their environments.--BobSpring is sprung! 15:54, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
That is what is meant by "aimless", I can't quite see what else it could imply. There is no product in mind with evolution and no particular aim. Even though there are selection pressures that would favour the survival of certain lifeforms, I don't think this is quite the same as an "aim". Evolution only works on the current and existing generation, not really giving any "thought" to the generation that is to come - the properties of the next generation are influenced only indirectly by selection pressures on the current generation. Indeed, the main contrast between natural and artificial selection is that the latter has a set goal for what the next generation will be like; natural selection only concentrates on what is alive now. An "aim" - particularly in respect to the concept of design - implies at least some consideration of what is to come in the future. Natural selection is incapable of doing this Hence evolution is truly unguided and aimless. Scarlet A.pngmoral 16:04, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
"Thought" may be too limiting a term. Thoughts come and go, perhaps proceeding like sparks on the surface of a lump of charcoal. "Consciousness" works better for me, but must be used carefully, since woo-purveyors get a lot of mileage out of it. Consciousness, like Bangkok, may be an emergent phenomenon, an agglomeration of unwitting items... Individual neurons, are they conscious? Are individual creatures (and convection cells, and what not) elements of a greater (perhaps (gasp) cosmic) consciousness? Does all this typing say I am a pantheist, a deist, an intellectual wanker, or what? "Intent" is a whole nother ball of wax buried in a can of worms. Fire away... Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 16:25, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
The whole analogy is just that - an analogy. It is not a proof in any way. Analogies are useful for simplifying explanations, and that's about it. I'm sure everyone here has played the game of "push the analogy so far it gets hilarious". Blancmange (talk) 20:11, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
I remember when there was a mix-up with metaphors in the European parliament where the English 'pig in a poke' was translated as a 'cat in a sack' and started to get confusing when a foreign MEP began extending the metaphor with comparisons to furry tails. So yes, you can only take these things so far. Although PJR has pushed the boundaries with his "meaningful data" arguments over at aSoK.  Lily Inspirate me. 20:50, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
With respect to ID arguments, the idea of design goes far beyond mere analogy to technology (but yes, you're right that it doesn't prove anything. And yes, I've played that game before; have you perhaps heard of the Spank Bank?). ID advocates are saying that something that is designed has properties x, y and z. Complexity, order, specific functionality and so on. Therefore something with these properties is designed and design implies a designer. They don't so much prove it by analogy as give examples of design to demonstrate these properties; cars, watches, lasers and anything technological. What Taleb is pointing out in the above quote is that design doesn't necessarily imply a designer because we have examples of things (technology) that some of us do think are designed - except they're not, they fail to show an intent on behalf of a designer because they've come together so organically and serendipitously. Scarlet A.pngmoral 21:33, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Actually it's really quite a good point. I read it too quickly the first time and responded inappropriately.--BobSpring is sprung! 22:05, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
It's something I think you really need to read the whole of The Black Swan to appreciate, though. Although the ID mention is only a footnote, he goes quite in depth about predictions, schedules, planning and, of course, randomness. This makes the notion about science and technology being aimless make far more sense. Scarlet A.pngmoral 22:27, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Sounds worth a read.  :-) --BobSpring is sprung! 20:09, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Oh, really?[edit]

The Pope wrote: "At present, Christians are the religious group which suffers most from persecution on account of its faith - this situation is unacceptable since it represents an insult to God and to human dignity." From something called Irish Central Him (talk) 13:58, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

8| Hamster (talk) 15:51, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Damn, where's my emoticon box with the guy falling over laughing? Though with a little too much cherry picking from the likes of the Christian Legal Centre, I can see where he might get that impression. Scarlet A.pngmoral 16:05, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Given that in the West Christians comprise the largest and most powerful religious grouping it is likely that they do get more instances of what they perceive as "persecution" by sheer weight of numbers, but the degree is pretty low when compared to what atheists, heretics, Maya, Incas, Aztecs, native Americans and Jews have experienced at the hands of Christians. Until a POTUS is an open and avowed atheist without any reference to his/her 'lack of faith' then I don't think that Christians have much to complain about. When you think about it, the main persecution of Christians tends to be related to them openly flaunting their religion in the faces of others, perhaps DADT should be extended to religion.  Lily Inspirate me. 18:36, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Pretty sure he's not talking about places like the US and Europe, but rather China, the Middle East, and similar places. If they are the world's most persecuted it's because they're the biggest as well as the one's who actively try to convert the most, which can lead to clashes. DickTurpis (talk) 18:44, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
I see the article talks about persecution of Christians in Asia and Africa and ends:
  • To exclude religion from public life, the Pope argued, makes it difficult to "guide societies towards universal ethical principles" such as the fundamental rights set forth in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
  • The Pope concluded: "The world needs God. It needs universal and spiritual values, and religion can offer a precious contribution to their pursuit, for the building of a just and peaceful social order at the national and international levels."
So we need religion for a "just and peaceful social order". But just a minute. Who are these people persecuting Christians in Asia and Africa? Presumably people of non-Christian religions. So how come religion simultaneously leads to a "just and peaceful social order" while at the same time causing persecution?--BobSpring is sprung! 18:49, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
It all boils down to the "my religion is the right one" syndrome.  Lily Inspirate me. 20:35, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

You are lame and unfunny and I wish I had never seen you, "guys". Stop insulting Pope. Pope has done nothing bad. Better read his essay "on conscience", maybe you learn something. If it's not too late. --Idiot number 59 (talk) 19:02, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Squeee![edit]

Newly discovered octopi (octopuses? octopodes?) are CUTE! --Ψ GremlinSprich! 14:21, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

thats cutish all right. Must find how big they are though. Hamster (talk) 15:53, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
For a second, I thought I was looking at a creature from the RPG I am playing (La Pucelle Tactics)--Thanatos (talk) 01:43, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
@Hamster, 400 meters from wing to eyeball. Diet: 400 hamsters per hour. Yes, it's an arboreal octopus! Elaborator (talk) 07:41, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

If true[edit]

If this story is true the man should be given a RW award.--BobSpring is sprung! 14:45, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

Outstanding! It certainly does seem believable, I've been to Sharm and there's no shortage of drunk Serbs. What a guy! DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 14:59, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Seconded. Of course, another few centimetres either way and it would have been "Drunk Serb eaten by shark." --Ψ GremlinПоговорите! 15:06, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
It's been in WIGO:World for a day or so.  Lily Inspirate me. 18:01, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Likely fake Ace McfuckingAwesome 20:17, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Did people think this was true? EddyP Great King! Disaster! 21:21, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Awww :( Pegasus (talk) 23:30, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Man bites shark is such better copy than shark bites man. Elaborator (talk) 07:40, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Student grants redux[edit]

I know a lot of people have strong views on this. Last week's Radio 4 economics programme More or Less had a good look at the figures.  Lily Inspirate me. 20:26, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

I remember working out whether it'd be even possible to pay it back as a back-of-an-envelope calculation when the top up fees first came in. Assuming you don't get promoted to be a CEO by the time you're 30, you'd be lucky to pay it back by the time you're 80 - that's a decade or so after they wipe the debt off anyway. The more thorough work seems interesting, though. If students aren't going to be able to pay it back, you have to wonder what the point is. Scarlet A.pngmoral 21:07, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
They don't expect you to pay it back. They don't care. They've moved "wage slavery" up into the upper middle class. Slavery was the best deal Capitalism ever had, and they've been trying to get it back ever since. And you take the side of the "police" in imaginary battles between people who don't matter to them. Cell Ladablar (talk) 07:37, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
Of course most people won't be able to pay it back. It will function as a tax, except that it's a particularly unfair tax that the very richest people can stop paying after a while (assuming they don't tax-avoid their way out of it altogether).--

Kriss AkabusiAAAWOOOGAAAR!!1 11:55, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

They've rejected a graduate tax, but I've not actually seen the reasoning beyond "unworkable". It wouldn't tie people to a debt (a major psychological boost, IMHO) and in principle you could make the payments lower than with the loan and still get a higher return. Not to mention that it would be easier to administer and collect and wouldn't produce the super-massive fee levels that put people off university. Scarlet A.pngmoral 15:20, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Gulf of Aden Vortex behind Attempts to Jail WikiLeaks Founder?[edit]

Reading around the MINA website because of the alleged shark killing I discovered this piece of crazy.  Lily Inspirate me. 21:01, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

Dear Lord... all they need to do is mention the moon landings and they'll have the set in one article. Scarlet A.pngmoral 23:28, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Hard to say conclusively, but I believe it's just a bit of fun. Especially so, given the only link in the article leads to another article on the same site that is manifestly cocking a snook at fringiness and quite humorously too.--Brendiggg (talk) 09:07, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Lunar eclipse[edit]

On equinox. Sweet if the sky isn't cloudy. Mostly North America I think. Just a heads up. Sister golden hair (talk) 08:31, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Err... equinox - isn't that 21st March? I think you mean solstice Jack Hughes (talk) 09:22, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
Not just 21st March, there are two equinoxes.  Lily Inspirate me. 17:51, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
There aren't just two equinoxes (equinoces?), there are also two solstices. Add it up people! You non-geniuses don't get it do you? The answer is four! How many sides does a cube have? Do I have to spell it out? FOUR!--Brendiggg (talk) 15:44, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Finally! Someone willing to espouse Cube Truth! DickTurpis (talk) 15:50, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Equinox = day and night same length = spring and fall; solstice = winter and summer. sterile syringe 18:28, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes a CUBE has FOUR sides , er and a TOP and a BOTTOM , but definately only FOUR SIDES. I am a bit annoyed that we had SNOW and missed it. Local news said 400 years before it happens again. Hamster (talk) 21:11, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
517, according to an EDUCATED STUPID MATHEMATICIAN. Bastard stupid Hoover! 23:14, 21 December 2010 (UTC)

Cracked's 5 Ridiculous Things You Probably Believe About Islam[edit]

http://www.cracked.com/article_18911_5-ridiculous-things-you-probably-believe-about-islam.html How accurate is this?Ryantherebel (talk) 21:17, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Not very. I'd guess maybe 25% of Americans. Occasionaluse (talk) 21:36, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm sure that it's a lot of it's fair. It's easy to assume that "all Muslims are xxxxx" in the same way that one might (erroneously) say that "all Christians are YEC's" or whatever. Obviously both religions have substantial numbers of outright nutters though - and the nutters do tend to be the most memorable.--BobSpring is sprung! 21:58, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
Hmmmm, some of the 'debunking' is just as flimsy as the original assertions. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 00:00, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
It's basically "if you're a moron or listen to too much right-wing talk radio, you'll think this" (although they may also be straw man assertions, you will certainly find people who do believe that sort of thing). Scarlet A.pngmoral 00:17, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Good article, and I learned a thing or two, even, but I noticed one bit of weaselly phrasing...
In fact, 45 percent of American Muslims in one poll said they see evolution as "the best explanation for the origin of human life on Earth," which isn't so shabby, considering only 24 percent of evangelical Christians believed the same.
Comparing evangelical Christians, who generally tend to be more conservative Christians, with American Muslims, who I'd assume would tend to be more moderate, isn't quite "apples to oranges", but it does seem to be "Granny Smith to Red Delicious".
I can't find a statistic for what percentage of American Christians as a whole take that philosophy, but I'd daresay it comes closer to the percentage of American Muslims. MDB (talk) 12:20, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
It also glosses over the fact that certain Muslim regimes at least are "stuck in the Dark Ages" (or at least the pre-Enlightenment) by saying that they invented algebra 1000 years ago. All in all not bad though. I'm sure many of those things are believed by the, well, less-intelligent members of our society. I know one guy I used to know on Facebook (before he de-friended me for arguing against his libertarian assertions one too many times) called Iraq a theocracy, I assume because it's a predominantly Muslim nation it must be on strict Islamic law. I'm sure misconceptions like that are commonplace. DickTurpis (talk) 14:10, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Wasn't Iraq under Hussein one of the most secularized governments among the predominantly Muslim countries? (Probably not as much as Turkey, though.) Hek, Tariq Aziz, irrc, was a Christian. It may have been a dictatorship, but it was no theocracy. MDB (talk) 14:50, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
I believe it was, but to some people Arab=Muslim=Sharia law. Then there's those who think that countries like Turkey and Iran, being primarily Muslim, are Arabic. I guess it's an easy mistake to make, especially with Iran, but incorrect nevertheless. DickTurpis (talk) 15:29, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
I know that Arabic != Muslim, but isn't it accurate to say most Arabs are Muslims? I do know that the converse (most Muslims are Arabs) is not true.
And I really couldn' tell you which countries qualify as "Arabic", beyond the ones that have "Arab" in the name, like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. MDB (talk) 15:38, 21 December 2010 (UTC)

Not being facetious about it, the Arab countries completely or partially (e.g., Lebanon) speak Arabic as a primary language. This is not a minor issue in some countries, especially Sudan, where the North is Arabic, and a major issue in the civil war was forcing Islam and Arabic, as two distinct elements, on the (mostly) Nilotic and non-Islamic South.

The largest Muslim population in the world is in Indonesia. I can't say offhand where India ranks, but it does have more Muslims than the entire population of Pakistan. Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 22:32, 21 December 2010 (UTC)

Not that it's definitive, but according to this Pakistan has more, though not by much. DickTurpis (talk) 00:06, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
There is a significant Syrian-American presence in the city where I seem to have settled. Often, if I mention a Syrian acquaintance to another Syrian/Lebanese person, one of the first questions I get is "what church do they go to?"
Years ago I sat through a sermon in a Protestant church in a small midwest US town, about evenly split between farmers and rust-belt factory workers. It was preached by a Yoruba imam from Nigeria. His English was very good, and I do not believe Arabic was his first language. Just another couple of outlying data points... Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 01:22, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
Laughing and crying, I think. I've been made a part of an extended family from Sierra Leone, now in their second generation in the US. They are roughly split between Muslims and fundamentalist Christians. Only afterwards did it seem odd that I was enjoying, at Thanksgiving dinner, one of the best glazed hams I've ever had, made by a Muslim, while I discussed the preparations of one of the elders to go on the Hajj.
When the matriarch died, there was an interfaith service, with an equal opportunity Christian preacher -- he managed to offend everyone in the room, regardless of religion, ethnicity, or economic status. He did so at high volume, and it was one of the great technological interventions of my career when I snuck out, found the power panel, and threw the breaker on his amplifier. Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 02:05, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
Sounds like it was the right time for some direct action. No such need for the imam I heard. His talk was forthright, compassionate, and pointed. Afterward at coffee hour, he made his way around the room as if he had been swimming in those waters all his life. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 03:37, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

Archie is Obama, Reggie is Palin[edit]

Anyone going to read this? Probably not. I stopped caring for Archie when I was 12.--Thanatos (talk) 00:17, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

AiG misogyny[edit]

Is this comic implying women are dumb asses? - π 14:29, 21 December 2010 (UTC)

I like how the stats to the right describe the comic 'length' as "1.00 minutes". Who takes a minute to read through that pile of crap? Maybe it includes the 50 seconds of head-scratching and/or jaw-gaping that ensues. ONE / TALK 14:35, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
What is weirder is you can actually play them. They run for 5 seconds and nothing happens other than seeing the same comic still. - π 14:41, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
AiG = Misogyny is a given. If you're a biblical literalist then all the sin in the world is down to that silly woman Eve listening to the snake. It's all her fault but then, what do you expect as she was an afterthought made from on of Adam's ribs. Indeed, Eve's whole purpose in life is to be a companion to Adam; definitely a second class citizen. Jack Hughes (talk) 15:10, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
I have to admit, this one is kinda funny. Of course, they're kind of poking fun at over-zealous and/or over-literalist Christians. MDB (talk) 15:22, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
I wonder how many conservaloons see the depiction of adam and eve as black peoplespit and have a brain aneurysm. ONE / TALK 15:44, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
This one says it loud and clear - it's all Eve's fault. Without Eve Adam would still be in paradise. Jack Hughes (talk) 15:54, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Which reminds me. If it was Eve's fault, why couldn't Adam stay in paradise? Collective punishment much? Sen (talk) 20:55, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Adam ate too. --85.76.139.66 (talk) 21:31, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
To my defence, it was delicious. Adam (talk) 21:43, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
How's Steve these days, by the way? --Kels (talk) 00:32, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

The *Santa* Brand Book[edit]

For anyone who has ever at some point had to endure marketing bull spiel (I suspect that includes anybody that has worked for a publicly owned company), then I can highly recommend taking 5 minutes to read about the Santa Claus brand. It's brilliant. Make sure you take your bullshit bingo card with you. Bondurant (talk) 11:51, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

Jingle goats[edit]

Enjoy. (found here) Him (talk) 18:31, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

Pat Robertson is for decriminalizing marijuana[edit]

"I'm ... I'm not exactly for the use of drugs, don't get me wrong, but I just believe that criminalizing marijuana, criminalizing the possession of a few ounces of pot, that kinda thing it's just, it's costing us a fortune and it's ruining young people. Young people go into prisons, they go in as youths and come out as hardened criminals. That's not a good thing."

Hell hath officially freezeth over. --Leotardo (talk) 23:45, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

I'd say old age has finally caught up to Pat.Ryantherebel (talk) 00:34, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
...or something. --Leotardo (talk) 03:07, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

DADT[edit]

…just moved forward in the Senate with 63 - 33 votes. Not bad.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 16:50, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

What the fuck are you talking about? --Idiot number 59 (talk) 16:57, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Don't Ask, Don't Tell. It's been repealed. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 17:04, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
You strange americanos. --Idiot number 59 (talk) 17:09, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm English, in fact. Is this a world-wide "Make incorrect assumptions about SuspectedReplicant" month or something? –SuspectedReplicant retire me 17:15, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Don't ask. --85.76.130.107 (talk) 17:58, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
And I'm Welsh. Oh, and DADT isn't technically not repealed yet, it's got to go through the vote, which is about to start. Of course that's a technicality, but heh, maybe g0D will smite the Senate down before repealing DADT. You never know…--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 18:50, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, I tell a lie, an hour to the vote. Bloody time differences.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 18:54, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
What the fuck are you talking about? --Idiot number 59 (talk) 19:28, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Well, DADT just got repealed with a vote of 65 - 31 although apparently the House Resolution states that the 'President & Pentagon must certify that lifting the ban will not adversely affect the military'. Strange, I thought that had already happened, what with the reports and all. Ah well, after 6½ hours of watching CSPAN I now get to wander over to the fundie sites and enjoy the frothing at the mouth that's about to happen.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 20:30, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, I was jumping the gun earlier. What I don't get is why two people would vote Nay for cloture and then Yay on the actual vote. Does this happen often? –SuspectedReplicant retire me 20:37, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
It happens often in canada; voting 'oui' to skip further deliberations and the like then saying 'no' on the final vote. They get home earlier... Alain (talk) 05:50, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
That I can understand, but this was the other way around: "Let's keep talking and talking about it, but I think it's okay really". I suppose SD's post below gives one possible answer, but it still seems weird to me. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 11:58, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Well, it was't really jumping the gun. Something really weird would have to happen if cloture succeeded and then the Resolution failed. I don't know about the votes thing, whether it happens often or not, 'cause this is my first time watching something go through both cloture and vote in the Senate. As for two people changing their vote, I guess maybe it's a 'I voted with the party when it mattered and when it didn't I voted my own personal convictions'.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 20:42, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Something smart conservatives do, as here http://hotair.com/archives/2010/05/14/they-already-serve/. They take a politically popular position that they want to endorse (the cause of the south in the Civil War is a good example) and say that 'this is framed as x, but it's really about y', allowing them to present compelling reasoning for something fundamentally motivated by hate and prejudice. This is a weird argument because it is either an outright lie, the biggest kind of lie imaginable (personal experience indicates unlikely; conservatives are often frighteningly ingenuous), or so pessimistically Straussian that it acknowledges the ignorance and incompetence of the majority of its political cohorts (more likely, I think). Is there a special name for this kind of argument? It's more subtle than a red herring, I think.WilhelmJunker (talk) 00:34, 19 December 2010 (UTC) Yay! Dirty White Boy (talk) 05:29, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

Btw, i don't want to rain on the gay pride parade but dosen't all this just makes the draft a bit less complicated for 'them'? Alain (talk) 05:50, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

What draft? In most times of major war, the drumming out of queers and bundles of sticks dropped to almost zero anyway, since they stop bullets (and fire them) just as well as the next gal. Only in times of relative "peace" do they start clearing the ranks of jelly babies. Blancmange (talk) 07:22, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

What Ace reckons[edit]

DADT was a fine policy. Sexuality, straight or gay, should never be an issue. I think DADT should be extended to homo and hetrosexuals. You are all cannon-fodder - sexual preference is an irrelevance when hiding from mortars. Ace McfuckingAwesome 06:36, 19 December 2010 (UTC)

You do know what happened last time someone expressed that sentiment, right? It's fine in theory to say that sexuality should be equally unimportant regardless of what orientation it takes, but heteronormative attitudes make this more difficult in practice. Scarlet A.pngmoral 10:56, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
I agree that sexuality should not be an issue, but that usually equates to "gays shouldn't flaunt their sexuality". When it's time to go to a bar to socialize/pick up or take a partner to an official function, why should gays have to hide their preferences? If a gay member of the miltary took a same sex partner to a function, was that "telling"? Openness surely is better? RagTopGone sailing 11:29, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Funny thing is, every one I know who has been in the military or is in the military has a similar opinion: that if someone is gay, nobody really cares that much (or should care that much), as your job is not to be gay or straight, but to serve your country. Thus, I think the repeal of DADT is founded on good ground to an extent, but also think that they should have a "shut up about your love life and fight" rule put in its place. Punky Your mental puke relief 11:54, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
So long as they can effectively apply that to all orientations, that's fair enough. But the criticism from the shitstorm above seems to be that such an order only ever applies, in practice, to homosexuals - because this is the oddity and, regardless about acceptance is not statistically normal (it's like seeing an albino person or a three-legged dog, it's just not usual in the sense that it applies to a majority). This is why I brought up the heteronormative thing, we're so used to heterosexuality being "the norm" that we can't see the similarities between actions; i.e., "flaunting" your heterosexual partner is considered normal enough to go unnoticed, and doesn't even count as flaunting your sexuality - even though in reality it is. This is where you hit a snag, male soldiers saying they miss their girlfriends is accepted, male soldiers saying they miss their boyfriend is being open and perhaps a little "too" open. Again, it would be a nice idea to say both are equally appropriate or inappropriate, but you have to have an attitude adjustment to it. This is something that some of the more cynical LGBT activists seem to be unable to accept as possible for heterosexual people - there are some that I know are very paranoid and see homophobia everywhere (which I believe explains the somewhat rude and knee-jerk remarks to people who express such "homoapathetic" views). Indeed, this is the kind of attitude to equality that would put the entire concept of LGBT activism out of business, as it would ceases to become something special to fight over or make a fuss about. But I think it is possible to react to a gay relationship the same way as you react to a heterosexual relationship. Can it be applied in the military? Sure. Can it be applied elsewhere in life? Sure. We just have to let it happen, stop mistaking indifference as homophobia and stop treating those in homosexual relationships as bizarre and unusual, or something to be "proud" about or some sort of special case that does or does not deserve more or less rights than anyone else. When our attitude is "meh", we'll have equality and repealing the ban on gay men serving openly in the military is one step in the right direction for that. The next step would be to remove specific laws covering hate crimes and start treating a gay man who was beaten and killed because of his sexuality by a gang of thugs as a man who was beaten and killed by a gang of thugs. But are we prepared to go that far yet? Scarlet A.pngmoral 12:24, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Well said, ADK. The more "meh-ness" the better. I think that today, as in the past, many of us know people who are homosexual or who we think may be so, and really don't care much on that individual basis. The challenge is to generalize out and allow the sorts of behaviour in homosexuals (openness, blatantness, promiscuity, faithfulness, love, marriage) to be just as 'normal' and 'allowed' as in heteros. RagTopGone sailing 12:53, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
The irony being that discussing things like this is counter-productive to achieving such "meh-ness"! However, it's important to realise that this is a goal, not the current situation. There are still examples of extreme hate and prejudice, and while those examples exist we must still battle and fuss for equality. Scarlet A.pngmoral 15:50, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
"...gay men serving openly in the military..." Very interesting slip there. There are women in the military, too. Blancmange (talk) 20:17, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, I will remember to sterilise my language to make it perfectly Politically Correct next time. Scarlet A.pngmoral 21:36, 19 December 2010 (UTC)
Either that, or don't be an unrepentant asshole in future, you sexist bastard, you. Get over yourself, that was a seriously lame slip. Blancmange (talk) 07:44, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
Crawl out of your arse so you can fuck yourself. Scarlet A.pngmoral 15:21, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
I will certainly consider your advice next time I need to deal with someone who can't face that they made a blatant sexist error in their pontifications. You seriously embarrass yourself by being incapable of saying "oops, my bad". I hope you;re not this big of a jerk in real life when encountering similar commentary on your choice of language. Blancmange (talk) 05:11, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
I'll apologise when I've actually done something wrong. There's no "oops my bad" about it. So unless you can fault my logic or content rather than one-off wording of a single point, the instruction to fuck your self righteous self still stands. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:05, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The non-inclusive language is offensive. Your anger and refusal to consider your mistake, day after day after day, is truly embarrassing. Your content was wrong. Your logic was wrong. You only included gay men. You were wrong. You refuse to admit that such use of language is just as exclusionary as DADT was. Your instruction is even lamer. Blancmange (talk) 06:04, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Weeaboo --85.76.49.32 (talk) 21:46, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Don't yous ee noone gives a fuck of what you "reckon", stupid pig. --Idiot number 59 (talk) 18:59, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Can't personally say if the Marines actually are as concerned as Gen. Amos says, but I do know a fair number of serving Army people. One sergeant I know, currently deployed in Afghanistan, was telling me it was definitely "meh" in his units. Everyone knew everyone else's sexuality, and it was not a big thing -- they were an explosive disposal unit where there has to be an unusual amount of trust. Occasionally, someone new would join, and maybe, after much stress, come out...and the usual answer was...ummm...so? Occasionally, "great! more women for me!" His wife is also a soldier, public affairs but also, not quite in the rules, a combat photographer. Doesn't bother her any. I knew of one case where a guy pushed on her a little too hard, and his sequence of memories was "gee, that's what an enraged Valkyrie looks like" and "why am I in the hospital?" Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 05:41, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Conservative Blogger: Lower life expectancy to cut health-care costs.[edit]

Holy fuck. This guy is fuckin' sick.--Thanatos (talk) 18:30, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Yes. But he is also correct. The most effective way to manage health care costs would be a Logan's Run-type scenario. I don't think anyone is going to propose that, anyway. DickTurpis (talk) 15:46, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Strictly speaking a lower life expectancy would only reduce health costs if you euthanised sick people. It is possible that people who died younger may have greater health-care needs while someone who lived to 120 and then snuffed it very quickly might have only minimal needs.  Lily Inspirate me. 22:55, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Echinacea useless for colds[edit]

The American College of Physicians study finds that taking the popular herbal remedy is no better than a placebo at shortening a cold or reducing the severity of its symptoms.

And in other news, the pope is Catholic and bears shit in the woods. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:34, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
On the other hand, echinacea tea actually tastes pretty good. --Kels (talk) 00:29, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
A lot of alternative treatments feel good, even if they are not really efficacious.  Lily Inspirate me. 19:35, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Rolling Stone[edit]

have announced their 500 greatest albums of all time. Let the arguments commence... --Ψ Gremlin말하십시오 10:32, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

Ummm it's exactly the same list as their 2003 book. FreeThought (talk) 10:47, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
And full of the same old same old aging rock critic masturbation. Nevermind ahead of Born to Run? Name the second good song on Nevermind...? And yeah, though I love them, four Beatles albums in the top ten? Only four? ;) PS, Stolling Rones' editor is like older than most of us. This is like SNL offering their "fifty funniest moments" when the show barely manages a joke per skit. But when all the writers and editors are stones, everything seems funny... wait, did I get off track a bit? September Storm (talk) 05:15, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The Beatles aren't bad by a long shot, but when you stick pretty much every album of theirs in the Top 10 of "GTREATSSTS ALBUMNS EVARR!!!!!1111223" even they can't escape the 'overrated' label. Scarlet A.pngmoral 14:01, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
You can't overrate perfection. Abbey Road should be in the top 10 too. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 14:37, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
This poll, like all others of its ilk, is completely fatuous. How on earth do you measure greatness - shades of Dead Poets Society here - without being subjective. This is especially true in an area like popular music where art is not the primary objective. A rock journal like Rolling Stone will be massively biased towards its age and culture group - hence the emphasis on the Beatles. Others would wildly disagree. The problem is that we all tend to see our personal preference as an absolute judgement - what do you mean you don't rate Wally And The Unknowns? Jack Hughes (talk) 14:55, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I don't begrudge the Beatles their place a bit, but you have to go into the 40's before you hit Pink Floyd? Seriously? Of course, it's really the "best well-known albums", given how many worthies there are that labour in obscurity that I expect aren't on the list (given how difficult it is to go through 500 selections a handful at a time). --Kels (talk) 15:29, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I would place The Wall and Night at the Opera far above Nevermind, indeed, and in the top ten or twenty. The Beatles should just get a "special mention" at number one with Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Pimper, "eponymous" and Abbey Road. Or fuck it, their whole catalog. That leaves room for other great works. And did I see Exile coming up before Sticky Fingers? Oh well... Sister golden hair (talk) 06:00, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Open mouth and insert foot[edit]

“In the 1970s, paedophilia was theorised as something fully in conformity with man and even with children,” the Pope said. Belfast Telegraph Him (talk) 03:04, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

He's really bad at this whole "Pope" thing, isn't he? --Kels (talk) 03:50, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Wow. That's really sick. Can the Poop be impeached? Or indicted? Sister golden hair (talk) 05:44, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
“It was maintained — even within the realm of Catholic theology — that there is no such thing as evil in itself or good in itself. There is only a ‘better than' and a ‘worse than'. Nothing is good or bad in itself.” Is the pope promoting moral relativity now? Doesn't sound to catholicAMassiveGay (talk) 10:14, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Moral relativity, sure. --I'm bored (talk) 13:59, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I've been trying to get a link to the Pope's actual statement without much luck. Anybody got a link?--BobSpring is sprung! 11:17, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Who needs a link. Pope bashing is much more fun without actual facts getting in the way. --I'm bored (talk) 15:56, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
It's just that there is a possibility this has been taken out of context and it would be nice to read (or at least scan) the full thing. --BobSpring is sprung! 16:59, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Sorry for omitting the irony tags above. I actually agree with you (no irony). --I'm bored (talk) 17:04, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Buying a computer.[edit]

Hi folks. I want to spend between $750-1000 on a new laptop. Have always been a Dell guy, but am wanting to consider other options in the PC/Windows realm. Any suggestions/warnings? -- Please note: "Get a Mac" and "Go Linux" would not be really helpful at this point. Thanks a lot. P-Foster (talk) 15:28, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

You think you can just saunter back into and I'll just forget about what you've done to me and give you computer advice? Some things never change... Just like Dell being the best choice for a cheap laptop. Occasionaluse (talk) 15:40, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
You might want to say what you want to do with your laptop, e.g. do you want something with really long battery life? Do you care about weight? Do you plan to play games on it? Watch video? My generic advice is that a laptop is the only place an extended warranty ever makes any sense. Either buy a laptop so cheap you don't care if you drop it in the bath, or get a 3 year on-site, next business day, no cost service deal. There is no middle ground. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 15:44, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I hear Atari makes nice computers, but they are not IBM compatible. --I'm bored (talk) 15:55, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Just buy a cell phone and have proper portability and battery life. When you need to get something done hook it up to a TV, keyboard, and a mouse. --85.76.210.40 (talk) 16:09, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Ah. What I want to do with it: mostly database work/writing/web browsing--no gaming, no need for super long battery life, I can mostly plug in, no need for super lightweight. A good soundcard definitely a plus. Also, @ Neveruse/Occaisionaluse: the police have FINALLY stopped watching my house. What a nightmare. I can't believe you told them about that. P-Foster (talk) 16:10, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I bought a Toshiba with a dual processor 2.08 ghz I think and 3gb of memory, 160 gb drive, with dvd/cd burner , 3 usb ports, wifi and built in webcam for $498. It gets good battery life , up to 2 hours per charge, although the battery does run down if its not used. It came with windows Vista but that was a few years ago. Bought from Walmart. Hamster (talk) 16:25, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
At the price you talking about you might want to consider the Sony VAIO range. I understand they have a good reputation and they look fantastic. OK, now somebody will say they are crap and ugly. (Of course you've got to pay a bit more to have "Sony" stuck on the side.) --BobSpring is sprung! 16:41, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I like the top of the line VAIOs. I think entry-level ones are mostly name and you can get something that's actually a little more powerful from Dell. Won't be as shiny, though. Occasionaluse (talk) 16:48, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I think you should wait until the intel sandy bridge processors are released (mid January). They have pretty much been designed for laptops and coincide with a die shrink (which again helps laptops smaller electronics need less energy and output less heat). The integrated graphics card on the chips is also awesome as far as such graphics go (you can apparently play starcraft II on medium just with it) so a lot of manufactures will certainly be ditching a discreet one which will for any non gaming laptop would mean even more power and space savings. Sen (talk) 16:51, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm sure that what Sen says is true - though I have no idea what a sandy bridge processor is. But isn't there always something going to be released in the next few months which you just have to wait for--BobSpring is sprung! 17:31, 24 December 2010 (UTC)?
1) Avoid Dell. 2) For that kind of money find your local small computer expert/repairer/retailer, see what he/she is willing to put together for you, that way you get to choose the specs without sweating the rest, plus you're keeping your local businessperson in business, which isn't to be sneezed at, especially when you're looking at getting repairs done on an unknown, intermittent fault.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 18:17, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Good advice for a desktop - but for a laptop?--BobSpring is sprung! 18:36, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Oh yes, for a laptop as well. It's what I do with mine. You might not get the full range of customisable options that you get with a desktop, but in my experience replacing stuff in a laptop tends to be a more delicate proposition than a desktop and so you're better off first getting the machine from your local and then using him for upgrades, repairs and replacements, if only because he'll know the machine.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 21:10, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Buy a toaster instead. It doesn't get obsolete so quickly and you can make toast with it. --I'm bored (talk) 19:13, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Toasters are an anticompetitive plot to get you buy white bread. --85.76.210.40 (talk) 19:43, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm going to make some observations that are relevant IF you are trying to minimize cost. Do you run a fairly well-defined set of applications, or are you often adding more? If the latter, I'll shut up about anything other than Windows. With some of my customers, however, if they basically need a good set of office document tools, a browser, and perhaps graphics manipulation, I'm increasingly putting them into Ubuntu Linux, with Open Office and Firefox, to save the cost of Windows. Under a different hat, we avoid Windows for hospital and physician computers that have to run well-defined applications, because I've gotten tired of having the medical records or X-ray viewing application crash because the user installed a golf or stock market program.
If you're a gamer or do anything else computationally intensive, ignore the rest of the paragraph. Even with Windows, I've done pretty well for customers, who are largely commercial fishermen needing things on a working boat, with reconditioned laptops and desktops. If you drop me an email, I'll give you my supplier's contact info -- I'm purely a customer but don't want to advertise. The biggest problem with the reconditioned gear is that the disk is far too small, even to keep defragmented. With newer laptops, it's far easier than it once was to upgrade the disk. I pop the disk into an external enclosure, use it to boot Windows, and then make the onboard drive the boot disk. You may want to do that under a maintenance LINUX on a USB stick, and let it handle the disk copies. The supplier will do memory upgrade prior to shipping, and I find there's no advantage to doing it myself.
Video processing is another issue. If you do a lot and want a laptop, yes, you need the most recent laptop you can get. Some of the fishermen do a lot of it if they use three-dimensional sonar, and we really try to convince them to us a tower (or pizza box) on the boat, so we can put in an arbitrary video processor board. To tie back to an earlier thread, I would have tried to talk Noah out of a laptop. On the other hand, if he was going to leave me to drown...Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 23:03, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
mostly database work/writing/web browsing So go for screen size & keyboard that are best for you. Anything will cope with your requirements - you won't need anything fancy in the graphics/memory/processor-speed/disk-size. Your budget seems over large to me. Him (talk) 23:19, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
P.S. Go Linux - Sorry. Him (talk) 23:21, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, that budget would do you for a high-end, own built, gaming desktop PC. Should get a very sweet piece of laptop for that kind of money.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 02:05, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

Who did this?[edit]

Schlafly caméo at 0:58— Unsigned, by: Alain / talk / contribs

Given that your comment and the video seem to have been created at about the same time I suspect that you did it. --BobSpring is sprung! 15:49, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I stumbled upon this on reddit, i wish i had those vidéo ( and Wiki!) editing skills! Alain (talk) 16:00, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Nice as it is to see our old friend in a new context, that is one of the stupidest things I've seen in a while. DickTurpis (talk) 20:48, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Lame indeed. Sister golden hair (talk) 05:46, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
When it comes to Andy in anime, I was thinking more as one of the Titans in Zeta Gundam. Intolerant, violent, self-righteous, easily manipulated, etc.--Thanatos (talk) 16:35, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I did it. I will edit the description bar to prove this. 07:12, 25 December 2010 (UTC)HDuyNguyen (talk) 07:14, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
The main irony here is that Palin's type denounced Cardcaptor Sakura when it came onto American television. And I fucking realise this. [3] [4] HDuyNguyen (talk). EDIT: By the way, should I repeat this with [NephilimFree]?

A heart-warming tale[edit]

I haven't read any of his books, but this is a great piece. We should all do the same. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 15:59, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

We should all become conductors? Who's gonna take care of all the rest then? --I'm bored (talk) 17:20, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
More of an insolent resistor here... Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 21:36, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

Congratulations, Great Britain![edit]

This Christmas, for perhaps the first time ever, Britain is a majority non-religious nation (PZ) Him (talk) 23:24, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

huzzah. huzzah. And thrice huzzah. Presumably I'll be getting my Christian stomping jackboots under the tree tomorrow? --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 23:40, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Congratulations Spain. It's twenty to one in the morning on Christmas day. Just got the in-laws out of the door. Switch on the telly to the opening scenes of "Life of Brian". Now that's what I call a good Christmas Day film.--BobSpring is sprung! 23:41, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Now that is something worth celebrating this Holiday Season! All hail Mithras! Must go - my bath of bull's blood is waiting and I don't want it to congeal. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 23:50, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
You had a bath in Hungarian wine? Sounds great! Rrose selavy (talk) 10:53, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── In similar vein More Brits shop online than go to Xmas day church Him (talk) 23:47, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

Christmas presents for homeopaths[edit]

Books, I think. The Compleat Homeopathic Bartender's Guide explains how continuing to dilute the single-malt (sacrilege) makes it stronger. James Bond, however, had it wrong: a homeopathic martini is neither shaken nor stirred, but succussed on a striking board.

The book that I really want to read gives the homeopathic remedy for dehydration. The really funny thing is that water alone isn't a cure, given the insights that went into oral rehydration fluids.Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 00:32, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

Wouldn't a homeopathic book just be a single 1 syllable word stretched over a few hundred pages? X Stickman (talk) 03:23, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Most homeopathic liquid medicines have an alcohol base which acts as a preservative. FreeThought (talk) 03:39, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Alcohol has never worked very well as a préservatif. Quite the opposite in fact. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 20:25, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Wut? A few of us are getting on in years and can positively credit our jaunty presences to booze and nothing but booze. Booze as a meal substitute. Booze as a hair tonic. Booze down our chins and necks. Wash the fronts of our shirts and trousers in booze. Anecdotal evidence trumps your bald assertion all day. So there. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svgUser:Nutty Roux/sigtalk 20:37, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Whoosh. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 20:56, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

My video mocking Sarah Palin (watch it or all your goats are belong to us)[edit]

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR HDuyNguyen (talk) 07:43, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

It was already linked, above. I'm sorry to have to break the news that it is shockingly unfunny.--ADtalkModerator 13:04, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
I think the WTF?!!? effect was sought after Alain (talk) 16:04, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
One must always maintain a sharp intellectual distinction between a moose with lipstick, a grizzly bear with lipstick, a goat with lipstick, and a hyena with lipstick. Subcategories of hyena may involve prion disease, such as bovine spongiform encephalitis, or, if it crosses into humans, new variant Creuzfeldt-Jakob disease (i.e., mad cow disease in humans). Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 17:52, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Apart from failing to make any sense whatsoever except rather puerile mockery, failing to make any sort of political comment, being nothing more then the internet version of painting a "funny" moustache on a photograph and being about three minutes too long; it has the saving grace of ... (at this point my imagination ran out).--BobSpring is sprung! 18:58, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
ಠ_ಠ - VezzyRattlehead (talk) 19:10, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
I like it, except for the faces and the cartoonish backgrounds. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 20:23, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
It's the best film I've seen all year. Bravo. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svgUser:Nutty Roux/sigtalk 20:34, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Well that should amaze you
Merry christmas guys! Alain (talk) 20:38, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

Even AiG thinks the Bible is ridiculous[edit]

Take a look at the big banner picture on their ark begging site. Doesn't something just jump out at you about that? --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 23:00, 22 December 2010 (UTC)

What am I meant to be seeing? I don't get it.--ADtalkModerator 23:12, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
I assume it's the number of people building it - more than just Noah. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 23:16, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
Yeah, that. At least 22 males by my count. Presumably his kid's wives didn't have to work. Noah must have been one rich farmer. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 23:18, 22 December 2010 (UTC)
Noah had cranes? Aside from representatives of the crane baramin, that is. --Kels (talk) 00:19, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Cranes are a bit believable, but their motive power has been obscured by conveniently air-brushed dust clouds. Mighty vertical structures are impressive, and on point in aid of furthering the message. Depicting the messy sweaty muscle power below on the treadmills would just get in the way of the inspiring impressiveness. As any cartographer can tell you, one must generalize away the distracting clutter. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 03:04, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I can't believe I'm defending AiG...
It does seem pretty clear in the Bible that there were only seven people on the Ark. But I guess it's not unreasonable to think that Noah hired people to help him build it, prior to the Flood. And nothing is said about his wealth, but I always just assumed he was wealthy.--ADtalkModerator 02:39, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
The Bible specifies Noah, his three sons, and there wives. It doesn't say how many wives they had. There could have been hundreds of women on the ark. 02:46, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Nah, it says three wives. Genesis 7:13.--ADtalkModerator 02:50, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Well that is still eight. - π 02:51, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Maybe it's a montage of the same four dudes again and again? -Opcn (talk) 03:56, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I can just imagine Noah contracting out, promising generous payment right after the thing is completed and stocked... --Kels (talk) 03:58, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
That'd be the clever way to do it. In for a penny, in for a pound: "I'll pay you triple your normal daily wages shortly after we finish. And you don't have to worry about me running away, since how could I move this huge landbound ark?"--04:40, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I think he might be in danger of losing his status as righteous man on the "not to be killed by flood" list if he did that. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 09:37, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I love how their running total currently sits at just under 3K out of 24.4 Million. SirChuckBObama/Biden? 2012 10:56, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Hey don't knock it, that's nearly an eighth of a percent! ONE / TALK 12:58, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Going back to the ethics of others building the arc for Noah, whether waged or not. They must have known of the arc's existence. Once the rains started but before the water was deep enough to float the arc why didn't they go to Noah and say "OK, you were right, can we come aboard now?" I guess our "righteous man" just sneered down from the gunwales "told you so, told you so." Jack Hughes (talk) 13:47, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Yes, it is a pretty nasty story once you fill in the plot with the logical conclusions... although the benevolent God that loves everyone drowning the entire planet (and all but a few of the animals, who are otherwise innocent of Sin) is pretty vile at face value too. Scarlet A.pngmoral 13:54, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
In the cartoon version we saw in Sunday school, the door was in the bottom and they sealed it up before the rains started to accumulate. Noah tried to throw a rope to a drowning person but the person was swept away.--ADtalkModerator 14:56, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Animals aren't really "innocent of sin", they're incompatible with sin. Occasionaluse (talk) 15:12, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Looking at posture of most of the workers I'd say that they were clearly Noah's slaves. Nothing in the Bible against slavery. Also they were probably sinful slaves so there was no problem with leaving them to drown after the boat was built. Indeed, it would have been God's will that they die so saving them would have itself been a sin.--BobSpring is sprung! 15:26, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
All par for the course for the "most logical book ever written". ONE / TALK 15:41, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Hope they get the money[edit]

Reading the site I find they are actually trying to build a full size model of the Ark. That's a very real physical thing based on a myth. It should be interesting to see how many compromises they have to make in order to fit the myth to the reality.--BobSpring is sprung! 16:05, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

I like the bit at the bottom where it tells me I can sponsor a peg for $100, a plank for $1000, and a beam for a cool $5000. Can't help but admire the chutzpah... --Robledo (talk) 16:07, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

I really hope they don't get the money and that this 150 million dollar monument to ignorance sinks them like their ark would undoubtedly sink given exposure to water. Though, sadly, I suspect Ken Ham would pop up the next week with a new scam to fleece the cretinous creationist hordes. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 16:29, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
(EC) That's a very good point. Why hasn't someone asked them in a very public fashion why this thing isn't being built at the coast to be put out for sea trials after completion? I'd be very amused with the flavour of excuse they'd come up with to avoid saying "It'll sink on anything but a millpond." -- Iscariot Andy Schlafly for Congress 2012! 17:29, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Yes, a floating ark would be a far more impressive demonstration. But I'm sure any naval engineer worth their salt would laugh uproariously at the idea. So they'll have a very large wooden building, no doubt with a whole lot of structural, load bearing steel tucked away where the tourists won't notice, and they'll tell everyone it's wood held together with pegs. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 22:09, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I wonder how much the original cost Noah and his family? Did gOD only decide to save the rich?  Lily Inspirate me. 17:28, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
I know I've said it before I'm sure, but I'll say it again; in their defence, a full scale ark would be pretty cool. Especially if they did load it up as a zoo and did it properly. I mean, seriously, it's a good myth. It's a great story, and if you want to build a zoo around some sort of "concept" you could do much worse. Scarlet A.pngmoral 22:19, 23 December 2010 (UTC)
Even if they don't float it I'd like to see how they coped with keeping a full menagerie fed, watered and cleaned for a year without any external input.  Lily Inspirate me. 00:49, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I'm with Armond. If not passed off as history, but rather as an interactive exhibit on mythology, it would be pretty awesome if done right. But I"m big on myths and old ships. DickTurpis (talk) 00:53, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Is this different than the Ark in Frostburg, Maryland? Very hilly road there, and our heavily laden truck was struggling. I tell you all, there should have been "ARK AHEAD" traffic signs. We almost lost it when we came over a hill and found an ark-under-construction in front of us. Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 22:55, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Personally, I'm going to sponsor the termites, and as they're unclean bastards I only have to sponsor two. With luck one will be a Queen, the other a male.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 00:47, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

I'd like to see them build the ark using pi=3.--203.127.44.13 (talk) 03:33, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps we're missing something and AIG knows something we don't. Probably when Noah built the ark he also had a "cover story" along the lines of "It's only an exhibit." If pairs of exotic animals inexplicably start migrating across the deserts and oceans towards the US we should start to worry.--BobSpring is sprung! 08:37, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Look at it this way: if there's structural steel, then, logically, you can use an arc welder. Vaguely apropos, US surveys show a portion of population believes Joan of Arc was Noah's wife. Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 12:39, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Seriously, if they could have advanced chimera-producing labs before the flood, why couldn't they have had structural steel? Chronological snobbery!! --Kels (talk) 23:09, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
One of the common claims from creationists is that before the flood they had quite advanced technology but they ended up building the ark out of wood. To build a large sea-worthy vessel would have required some precision woodwork and lots of waterproofing. So even if they didn't construct a vessel out steel you would reasonably expect that they would need ferrous-metal hand tools. If such proficiency was common at the time you would have expected that there would also be similar if smaller vessels which would also survive the deluge. If they want to be authentic then I would certainly expect them to build this thing without the assistance of powered band-saws, lathes, planes, drills etc.  Lily Inspirate me. 18:19, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
It takes my group - with manpersonpower roughly equal to what Noah had - two circular saws, a mitre, three hand saws, two power drills, three cordless drills (with two battery packs each) and 6 months to build a single set for a musical. How you'd expect Noah to pull off something on par with a Nimitz class aircraft carrier is beyond me - perhaps with less drinking in between, I imagine. Though in pre-Flood times they lived longer, and they often claim it too nearly a century to build. That's dedication for you. Add the law of "it's its own prototype" to the mix - i.e., very little room for error or need for improvements! Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:46, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Phyllis says[edit]

Anyone wanna pick all the holes in this? Him (talk) 02:13, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

All I have to say is that I got a pop-up that offered me free naughty Santa eCards. "You've never seen Old Saint Nick like this before!" Not very Christian-like of the Canada Free Press. ~SuperHamster Talk 02:17, 26 December 2010 (UTC)
Didn't get the ad (but I use AdBlocker). Other than that, what else can I say? That woman isn't very bright... --TheEgyptiansig001.png 21:29, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

whoever put up the Santa-ish hat should have seen it cumming[edit]

On the Masturbation article with the hat the top left now looks like shovelling snow, which isn't what the extra smiley is intended for. Unless of course we are inventing an innuendo for "shovelling snow" at some point that I missed. K61824Insomnia? Masturbate till you pass out 03:28, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

I'm more concerned that the gif has now managed to move behind the logo since the upgrade or something... makes it look even more sinister. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:57, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

That's great - and I love the Santa hat whoever did it. --Leotardo (talk) 03:24, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

For Feck's sake[edit]

The Christmas Hat isn't working, it just makes our logo look like a festive testicle.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 02:12, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

For Feck's sake do we have to go through this again? Last year most people liked it, but a few whiners ruined the fun for everyone (RationalWiki's own localised War of Christmas?). I don't think we change our logo often enough. - π 02:38, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I for one am glad I didn't see whatever is being discussed. A Christmas RW logo??? Sounds stupid to me, but then again, as I said, I appear to have missed it. Sister golden hair (talk) 05:49, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
1) We definitely don't change the logo often enough. 2) At least colour the testicle in, a different colour for each of the 12 days of Christmas. Or failing that, add another testicle, one by itself looks really lonely.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 03:15, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
1) If the site should have multiple logos (fun idea) they should be discussed and agreed upon in advance, surely? Sister golden hair (talk) 05:49, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
The hat was discussed and overwhelmingly supported.--BobSpring is sprung! 12:18, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I think it's appropriate. After all, Hitler only had one. --Kels (talk) 03:47, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

I am having enough political problems with a Hitler article at CZ, but I decidedly do NOT need to add that. Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 05:31, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

The snow is a bit hemisphere-centric, isn't it? Shouldn't it be left to Google to do this sort of thing? Or does Rationalwiki "believe" in Santa Claus now? Elevens are better (talk) 06:20, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I thought the hat was a great bit of fun.--BobSpring is sprung! 08:31, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
It's there now, if you're not seeing it, it's your browser cache. -- Nx / talk 09:19, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Ha yes. So it is. Hi hat!! Welcome back!!--BobSpring is sprung! 10:47, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
In the spirit of being positive: I like it. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 10:50, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

There are strange compression artifacts around the text under the logo. --79.50.119.71 (talk) 10:54, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Merry Christmas, frohe Weihnacht - I like the logo, thanks for putting it up! larronsicut fur in nocte 10:59, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Discrimination!!! I'm an Athiest and I don't believe in those Bible stories about Santa Claus and Hats and Snow! Take it away! KILL IT WITH FIRE!!!!! --I'm bored (talk) 11:07, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Heathen scum! Don't you read your bible? Don't you know that Santa came from the east on his reindeer to give mistletoe and holly to the baby Jesus? Don't you know that the stable was heated by a Yule log while a robin sang in a nearby snow-covered plastic conifer? Get it together man.--BobSpring is sprung! 11:20, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I like the hat. Sen (talk) 12:03, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I also like the hat. I'm glad we're agreed, Sen. SJ Debaser 12:14, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Fuckin' amazing. I started this debate back in October, purposely to avoid any whiny-assed bitching when the day comes around. However, it seems there's always one whiny-assed bitch... the hat looks cool. --Ψ Gremlin말하십시오 12:29, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Am I the only one who doesn't see this hat everyone is talking about? DickTurpis (talk) 12:44, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Which skin are you using? Modern doesn't display the logo, you'll need to log out to see it. --Ψ GremlinParla! 12:55, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
As Nx suggested to me above you may need to clear the cache. --BobSpring is sprung! 13:01, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

YES!!! GREAT HAT!!! BOW DOWN TO THE MIGHTY GOD OF COCA COLA!!! BWAHAHAHAHAAAAAAA!!! --I'm bored (talk) 13:20, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Actually the Santa/Cola thing is an urban myth.--BobSpring is sprung! 13:26, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Of course Coca-Cola didn't invent Santa, but your article actually confirms the strong association between the brand and the character. --I'm bored (talk) 13:41, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
What the article says is that the oft-repeated story that Coca-Cola invented the red Santa costume is wrong. If you associate Santa with Coca-Cola then I assume that's your personal cultural bias. I'm not sure how extent this cultural bias may be.--BobSpring is sprung! 16:30, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
When I view it on my possibly culturally biased computer, the Snopes article which you linked above reads: "Coke's annual advertisements featuring Sundblom-drawn Santas holding bottles of Coca-Cola, drinking Coca-Cola, receiving Coca-Cola as gifts, and enjoying Coca-Cola became a perennial Christmastime feature [...] In an era before the advent of television, [...] Coca-Cola's magazine advertisements, billboards, and point-of-sale store displays were for many Americans their primary exposure to the modern Santa Claus image." (emphasis mine). I think this qualifies as "strong association". That being said, I don't care in the least if you enjoy idolizing a symbol of consumerism. That has been the primary purpose of Christmas (or whatever the PC term for that may be) for the last several decades anyway. --I'm bored (talk) 16:44, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
So your personal cultural bias is American. I had guessed as much, but for the rest of the world the red Santa is just the red Santa. It wasn't created by Coke as the urban myth suggests. --BobSpring is sprung! 16:49, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Maybe you missed the part where I quoted the article you linked to above. Or is that the bias you are talking about? In that case, sorry for reading the article, I thought that's why you linked to it. --I'm bored (talk) 17:02, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
I linked to if because you wrote (or perhaps shouted): "BOW DOWN TO THE MIGHTY GOD OF COCA COLA"
From this I assumed that you subscribed to the well-known urban myth that the red costume of Santa was created by Coke. The article states that following an advertisement campaign by Coke the Red Santa became associated with Coke in the US and gave rise to the myth. What are we arguing about?--BobSpring is sprung! 17:10, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
How would I know? I'm just arguing because I'm bored. I could also send you photos of Coca-Cola-Santa-Claus billboards right here in old Europe, if I could be bothered to get out of the house and into the cold. If it's "American bias", then at any rate it extends far beyond the US borders. --I'm bored (talk) 17:18, 24 December 2010 (UTC)
Ho Ho Ho. Merry Christmas.--BobSpring is sprung! 17:20, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

I changed it all of two seconds before Christmas Eve - remembering too well the major complaint last year (or at least the one that I see as most valid and rational) that it was up too early. You're welcome for the bitching opportunity, by the way. I knew certain people wouldn't disappoint. The "testicle" comment is a new one, though. My advice is to see a doctor if your testicles look anything like that logo. Scarlet A.pngmoral 02:51, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

The red Santa is a completely American invention. Now, where is my damn party dress? All I seem to have are rags... Cinderella (talk) 06:52, 27 December 2010 (UTC)