RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive91

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Contents

March of Dimes: historic example of mission shift[edit]

The March of Dimes set out in 1938 to eradicate polio. What was once a killing, disabling disease is now history, mostly. I do know a fellow who limps around, because the vaccines got to Bucharest too late for him; my late unknown mother-in-law also suffered from that virus. History, I say, an affliction of your grandparents and great grandparents.

In the middle 1950s, when the vaccines were shown to be effective and safe, the organization could have disbanded, mission accomplished. Bureaucracies naturally tend to resist self-immolation, and another "worthy cause" was found, to keep the lights on and the rent paid.

RW is not exactly a bureacracy, more of a, what's the word, O right, ochlocracy, with some infrastructure, and a cadre of so-called "bureacrats." (Is there a limbo bar handy?)

Is Conservapedia circling the drain? What next? Just asking... Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 17:53, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

I think I see the link you're trying to make here, but there is a factual problem with your argument: the March of Dimes mission statement does not contain the word "polio." It would seem--and I don't really know the organisations's history--that they have evolved their goals to fit changing circumstances. A much better lesson to learn. oh, yeah, and I saw dozens of polio victims every day when I was working in Tanzania. The disease may have been eradicated in the West, but it's still with us. PolarBear (talk) 18:11, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
Um, that is today's mission statement, written after the organization reinvented itself "to prevent birth defects." From that WP article, "It was founded by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1938 as the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis to defeat the epidemic disease poliomyelitis, commonly known as polio..."
I personally heard criticism of the organization's mission shift from various pulpits in the early 1960s. Of course, there are those who praised that reinvention. I bet they tended to be MBA's wearing suits, rather than barefoot doctors beyond comfortable borders. As you point out, the original mission is far from accomplished. Proclaiming that "a solution exists!" does not put out actual fires.
Yes, this is about RationalWiki's mission, in the waning days of CP. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 19:05, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
I don't understand. RW's mission makes no mention of CP and it never has.--BobSpring is sprung! 19:09, 29 January 2011 (UTC)--BobSpring is sprung! 19:09, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
EC. Okay, the way I also read your original post was "polio's not a problem anymore but MofD is still around fighting polio. WTF" My apologies. While RW's stated mission has nothing to do w/ CP, a random look at the most popular pages here would complicate that. That being said, reinvention to fit changing times is , no doubt, a good thing. good luck getting people of the WIGOCP page and embracing that mission as long as Conservative, Andy and Ed are making even occasional ventures into extreme lunacy. P-Foster (talk) 19:14, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I have been wrong at least once or twice, but the way I've always read the subtext of the RW mission was "Trent and some like-minded co-conspirators tried to inject some sanity into CP without making much of a dent, and so formed a support wiki for those focused on countering the lunacy."

I won't say the RW mission is window dressing; there is worthy substance to be found in it, in my view. Still, there are always two reasons for everything: the good reason and the real reason. Naturally, of those two, the "good" reason gets more public exposure.

Re-invention of an organization is not a problem per se; I'm all for re-using existing structures to accomplish the aims of the moment, but that way lies organizational bloat. Have a peek at Parkinson's Law or, better still, read the book. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 19:42, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

RW has been actively de-CPifying for a while. I'm not here for CP and frankly couldn't give a hoot about it. Just as long as the Fountain of Stupid keeps pumping, there'll be work to do - David Gerard (talk) 19:57, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
I stopped really caring about CP years ago. I take a look at the WIGO from time to time to see what's going on, but sometimes I ignore it for weeks.--BobSpring is sprung! 20:07, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
To me CP is like Phelps. Funny to watch, but not really worth getting worked-up over. Concernedresident omg!!! ponies!!! 10:55, 30 January 2011 (UTC)
Exactly. The point here is: now that CP has dwindled to a few nut jobs dealing with atheist obesity and homofaggot horribleness (Is chivalry still in the mix? Is the site any sort of profit center?) is it time for Rationalwiki to
A. Fold up the rational tent and move on, or
B. Continue circling around other fountains of stupid, pointing fingers and laughing?
I have added my two bits of work to the de-Conservapedification of this most Rational of wikis, but I am still pestered by the nagging thought that CP was the biggest part of RW coming into being, and that with CP in decline, a bit of that unifying focus is gone. For the record, I favor option B above as being more fun than the alternative. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 14:54, 30 January 2011 (UTC)
It's always the nagging thought, but the proportion of core editors who couldn't give a flying fuck about Conservapedia anymore is gradually going up. Scarlet A.pngpostate 16:16, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Some people are interested in CP others are not. I rather suspect that Ken's debate stuff was very close to a last major piece of activity. But so what? The die hard CP watchers will continue to watch it anyway and those who regard it as a sideshow will go back to other things.--BobSpring is sprung! 19:08, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Segue: to Lumenos's notion that Wikipedia needs fixing[edit]

I do find it a bit strange that no one thinks there is any way to improve the rationality of Wikipedia. We do have a sort of WGO @ WP for this purpose. I added a new one about a rational evaluation of sources. Unicow (talk) 02:31, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

I see you got accused of mistaking the map for the territory over there, which is consistent with what I've seen from you so far here.
Some time before the Flood, fresh out of university, I took a technical job, expecting to find at least a modicum of rationality there prevailing. A fellow worker put it pretty well: "Research and development? No, we don't do that here; it's just the name on the sign out front."
I am all in favor of a rational approach to life, the universe and everything, but when rationality comes in conflict with empiricism, empirical fact wins every time. Some few who claim to be "rational" seem to think that serious complex choices may be made based solely on abstract, crisply delineated algorithms. Hubris is Greek for "the kind of foolish overconfident pride that gets you into trouble." Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 22:56, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Evolved Cars[edit]

For those who haven't read today's Pharyngula - the Genetic Algorithm Car Evolution. Well worth a look.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 19:12, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

Cool. Definitely shows how those kinds of optimization processes are blind and not at all goal-oriented. Tetronian you're clueless 19:34, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
Damn. An hour and a half wasted looking at multi-colored triangles...--ZooGuard (talk) 10:44, 30 January 2011 (UTC)
The really interesting idea would be to see how generations react to changes in environment. Say, occasionally shift the track between bumpy and flat or really steep. I've seen plenty of cool genetic algorithms before but I'm not aware of any that do alter the environment like that. Scarlet A.pngpostate 16:40, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
I seem to be in the middle of an evolutionary arms race between two and three wheeled monsters right now. Scarlet A.pngpostate 16:43, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Rolling rolling rolling...
Now the three wheeled ones seem to have died out and the population is left with vestigial wheels... Scarlet A.pngpostate 16:49, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Naturally I had to leave that one running all night. They now seem to routinely go over 300, however I do note a high score of 736 I weren't around to see. Things to note: Big wheels to deal with difficult terrain, aft suspender almost vertical, forward suspender not so, until you realize that the front wheel is often acting as a bumper as well.Sen (talk) 15:14, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
(736) is the target score, which is twice the record of the previous generation. If a car hits that, the simulation stops and it "wins" (this basically speeds things up in the early stages of the simulation). Because of a seriously steep climb and sharp point at about 360, it's almost impossible to get them passed that point and you hit a plateau where there aren't enough variables to get it to "evolve" a way of getting beyond it. You can see the averages (red and black lines in the middle) dip around generation 16-20 where there's no longer any real solution to the problem and you seem to get degrading effects similar to inbreeding. Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:27, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Shiboleet![edit]

I've given up hoping that Blightynet will work. Whatever I click, all I get is:

A database query syntax error has occurred. This may indicate a bug in the software. The last attempted database query was:

   (SQL query hidden)

from within function "MediaWikiBagOStuff::_doinsert". MySQL returned error "1142: INSERT command denied to user 'ublight_440644_1'@'linweb12.atlas.pipex.net' for table 'trueobjectcache' (cust-mysql-123-01)".

What can I do? Can anyone here help please? I'm useless at computer tech stuff. Totnesmartin (talk) 22:47, 30 January 2011 (UTC)

It's a permissions error by the looks of it. Seems like your login was successful, but that the mysql user doesn't have permission to write to the table. If you have root access to the database, you can fix this by going in to the users database and granting that user the insert permission. If you're one a shared hosting system and don't have that sort of access, you're going to need to move all your tables to a database where you have the right permissions. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 00:28, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
I can't even log in. Plus I don't think I have root access. Totnesmartin (talk) 09:56, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
Well neither can I. Where's Phantom Hoover when you need him? I'm afraid my tech skills are limited although I have access with phpMyAdmin but as it's shared hosting I don't think I can change any permissions. Perhaps someone could drop me an email and give me a few tips. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 10:57, 31 January 2011 (UTC)
I live! I'll poke at things right away. MARCVS ANTONIVS 21:27, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, phpMyAdmin poking has proved futile: the one database I can examine is a blank MW setup; there does appear to be another to which I have no access. I can't connect through FTP, although the probability I'm doing something wrong there is high. MARCVS ANTONIVS 21:39, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Must confess that I usually go running to Nx.--BobSpring is sprung! 11:12, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

Moon Physics[edit]

Ok, this has bugged me for years, at times to the point of wondering if my life was a Truman-show-esque masquerade under a dome: If the Moon's waxing and waning are based on it's orbit of the Earth, why does it appear to be going dark in parts rather than setting like the sun does? Also, why do we not have 15 days a month of New Moons?--Mustex (talk) 01:51, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

You don't need to know. This is being taken care of. Run along now. Doctor Dark (talk) 02:21, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Isn't the dark on the moon the same as the night and day on Earth? - π 07:54, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
  1. The moon does rise & set
  2. Phases
  3. More phases
09:19, 1 February 2011 (UTC) SusanG Toast
I think you may be getting confused slightly, but I can't see where. The moon takes roughly a month to orbit the Earth, a single rotation of the earth is ~30x shorter. Over the course of a night the moon stays, to a first approximation, still. So it's shadowing and phase are dependent on its position (as in SusanG's second link). If you want to see the moon rise and set, you have to consider it over a period of a whole month as it orbits around the Earth. This can be done best by looking at the moon each night at the same time. Framing it like this would cancel out the Earth's rotation and you'd see it move across the sky with its phase changing depending on its position. Scarlet A.pngpostate 09:29, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Pardon me but the Moon rises & sets daily, just like the sun. Watch it long enough and, like the sun; it will appear to cross the sky. It will rise and set at a different time each day but will still take (approx) 12 hours to "cross the sky". 09:40, 1 February 2011 (UTC) SusanG Toast
http://stellarium.org --ZooGuard (talk) 09:44, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I think there is some confusion between ADK & SusanG as the Moon's relative "stillness" depends on the frame of reference. In the course of 24 hours it moves only about 13° of arc in its sidereal orbit but traverses about 167° of our sky in 12 hours (it is actually above the horizon for longer than 12 hours). The freaky thing is that its axial rotation period is equal to its sidereal orbit period so that it maintains the same aspect to the Earth. This means that a "day" on the moon lasts about 14 of our days, so that the phrase "dark side of the Moon" is not synonymous with "far side of the Moon" - the dark side is always the side facing away from the sun. The moon is still in our sky even when we cannot see it so a new Moon only appears in the evening sky as the first sunlight hits the part which is facing Earth; during the previous day the Moon is in the sky during the day but appears largely invisible because there is no reflected light, we know this to be true because occasionally the moon happens to pass directly between the Sun and the Earth and produces an eclipse. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 10:39, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm not really sure what Mustex is asking. But it's obvious that the Moon won't behave in the same way as the Sun because:
  • The earth orbits the sun on an annual basis and while at the same time revolving on a 24 hour basis.
  • The moon orbits the earth on a monthly basis with a revolution locked to this orbit - that is to say it keeps the same face to the earth.
Given this it's pretty obvious that while they are both shiny things in the sky they are going to display pretty different behaviours.--BobSpring is sprung! 11:26, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Yes the same face towards earth, with a slight wobble (libration) due to the orbit not being perfectly circular, see NASA video clip. FreeThought (talk) 12:04, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I was assuming a frame of reference where the daily motion was removed. Therefore it would rise and set on a 30 day cycle (due to its orbit) as well as a 1 day cycle due to the Earth's rotation. And tidal locking isn't that freaky, it's quite common. The freaky bit is when it's locked so both are facing each other exactly the same way (Pluto and Charon are like this, IIRC) and the moon would be due to lock into the same position - although so far into the future that the sun will explode first. Scarlet A.pngpostate 12:45, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
A friend of mine did a youtube video explaining this, and with an animation I understand it now ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEdfuXciBlQ ). I think the main problem was that I wasn't taking into account the possibility of seeing the moon from an Angle once its monthly orbit had passed the Earth's day/night line (whatever its called).--Mustex (talk) 06:09, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Terminator, IIRC. Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:12, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

What irks me about woman[edit]

I know I know, this isn't all woman (but most I have had been with) and it certainly isn't the the only thing about woman that is irksome nonetheless....I am making my dinner (Mrs McWicked having already eaten) and Mrs McWicked starts going on an epic cleaning binge. I cook and then, as I am eating my meal, she complains that I haven't helped with the cleaing. Well, for fucks sake, if you want help why don't you wait until I am not cooking or eating. How is this my fucking fault? Ace McAwesome 05:24, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

How is this a trait of women, and not of romantic partners in general? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 05:34, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Because it's the fault of woman. Ace McAwesome 06:15, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
  • If a man speaks, in an empty forest, where there is no woman to hear him, is he still wrong?
  • If a woman speaks, in an empty forest, where there is no man to hear her, is she still nagging?
Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 07:32, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Mrs McWicked cleans? Ignore the complaining, she's a keeper. The last time Mrs Bondurant lifted a mop handle was never, and she complains that the place is a mess. Bondurant (talk) 09:43, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Surely this means that her leash was too short. Scarlet A.pngpostate 10:01, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I don't see the point in me doing any cleaning, because apparently I never do it rightTM. I could burn the house down and rebuild it and I'll still get told off for the speck of dust that drifted in whilst rebuilding. Also, re cleaning while cooking, while I'm cooking the wife has a thing about cleaning where I'm working, so she will ask "Have you finished with this?". Yes dear, I just chopped mushrooms & a red pepper and put it in a bowl for you to throw away and put in the dishwasher. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:02, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm still reeling from the concept that there is a Mrs McWicked. Worm(t | c) 10:45, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, my husband cooks. He's a great cook, predominantly Indian with a bit of other Asian for variety. Trouble is that every pot, pan, utensil, dish & horizontal surface is used in the creative process. If I didn't wander through the kitchen every 1/2 hour or so & tidy up the mountain of mess at the end would take any joy out of eating. RagTopGone sailing 10:50, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm fairly guilty of that too, though I do try to tidy up as I go. I think the failing comes from the fact that I used to be a chef (for about a year), and the KP would take care of all the mess for me :) Worm(t | c) 11:09, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
My housemates are all guys, so our house is pretty untidy, though one of them is a neat freak and doesn't stop complaining about the endless pile of dirty dishes left by my other housemate who uses about 9 or 10 pots, pans and baking trays to cook fish and chips, and then leaves them for about 2 weeks, causing some consternation, several signs to go up saying "CLEAN UP WHEN YOU'RE DONE COOKING! IT'S NOT FAIR LEAVING 2 WEEKS OF CRAP FOR OTHER PEOPLE TO DO!" On two occasions we've reached HCM 4. SJ Debaser 11:13, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I can sympathise with your mate. I was in a house of 4 last year, all guys; two of us did all the cleaning, figuring that it would be better to attack the common areas every now and then rather than creating tension by telling the other two to clean up. At the end of the year, one guy moved out, leaving mould all over his walls and caked into the windowframes, grime mashed into the floorboards and a few dirty tissues under the bed for the remaining people to clean up. I regret not initiating a house-wide HCM earlier, as it ended up with industrial cleaners, money taken out of the deposit, friends being lost, general drama, great big wardrobes falling down the stairs, everything. Webbtje (talk) 11:21, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm the cook in my house as well. Tehmizzus only cooks when I'm ill or away, and is able to muster up scrambled eggs, potato waffles, fish fingers, and if she's feeling adventurous, oven chips. That said she can make a really nice dry potato & okra curry (waits for Worm to request the recipe). I'm also the kind of chef who uses every possible pot and pan in the kitchen, but I'm getting a bit better at cleaning up as I go along. That said it's usually me who does the cleaning up after food these days anyway. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 11:36, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I was going to, until you got to Okra. Evil stuff. Worm(t | c) 12:05, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I hate okra too, but it's awesome in this dish. You should try it! CrundyTalk nerdy to me 12:15, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Mrs Psy-to-be & I generally share cooking duties, altho she's far better than I am. I can normally throw something decent together, as long as everything comes out of packets. Cleaning isn't really a problem, we have someone in twice a week to do that. Altho I end up getting roped in to wash the tops of cupboards and stuff, cos MPTB can't reach.
Getting back to irks - she has the annoying habit of mumbling a question at dinner time, then promptly shovelling in a forkful of food, leaving me to wait for 20 minutes for her to repeat the question, once she's finished her gentle mastication. --Ψ GremlinRunāt! 12:01, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Ooh, Crundy? Me other half's a veggie and we both love a bit of okra, what be the recipe? Webbtje (talk) 12:35, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'll try and remember to post it later. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 13:14, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm a good Southern boy and I love fried okra and pickled okra. MDB (talk) 13:20, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm a Southern Boy and I hate Okra.Тиранесcomplaints 14:47, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I'm a Southern Boy and I like fried okra but not any other way. Possibly because Grandma Dark once described stewed okra as "like dipping into a bowl of snot." Doctor Dark (talk) 15:15, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I've never had stewed okra on its own, but I've had it with other veggies in soups and such. I like it.
My ex is from Chicago-land. I got him to eat collard greens at Cracker Barrel, and he liked them (with even more vinegar than I like on mine, which amazed me, since he usually isn't one for spicy foods.) He tried one piece of fried okra and wouldn't try it again, though. MDB (talk) 15:24, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

(UI) Here you go. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 15:55, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

This[edit]

Not to change the topic too much, but this is always why it bothers me that "homosexuality is a choice". If it was that easy, I'd totally be gay. Women are crazy. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 17:58, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

Then would anyone be lesbian? Howard C. Berkowitz (talk) 19:08, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I would assume not. The lesbians I know are a bit divided on that one, depending on why they're gay.. Apparently, Women are crazy, but Men are pigs, so pick your poison, I guess. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 19:17, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I don't actually know any women who identify as out-and-out lesbians. There's one I can think of who's bi, but I'm not close to her and have seen her about once in the last year or so. Most the girls I know are comfortable with kissing other girls, but for no other reason than to just laugh about it when we're drunk. I know a couple of open gay guys, but I'm only properly close to one of them, as he's my best mate and he only came out last year. SJ Debaser 19:34, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
And then you did an IRL retweet :) CrundyTalk nerdy to me 19:49, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Eh? SJ Debaser 22:45, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Got drunk and told all your friends in the bar he was gay. Were you drunk when you admitted that here? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 11:21, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Somebody's not trying hard enough. Some girls have penises, you know? And they are dainty, clean, hairless, and sweet. We need a support group for people who are all caught up in the heterosexual lifestyle. Maybe if you would put more effort into being pretty someone special would notice you. I guess it comes down to whether you can find a woman or dude who is more tolerable in their own way. A woman once said that couples shouldn't live with each other, they should live next door to one another. That might be a solution. I go for the one's who are the most desirous and accommodating, so that helps. Maybe guys should have union where they boycott any who are known for their pussy whiplash. Most of the problem is that girls have better unions and the bite-fist hot ones (say Sarah Silverman) can flick away the fleas until they have a willing slave. You can grow your own boobs, you know? That's the easy way. Unicow (talk) 07:27, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

And the other things...[edit]

  • She always leaves her tea bag in the cup with a inch of cold tea left in the sink.
  • Doesn't conform to the "clean as you go" cooking ethos leaving me with a heck of a mess to clean up whereas I am a spotless cooker in deferral to her having to clean after me
  • Always sneaks spices/salt/ingredients into the meal I am cooking when my back is turned.
  • Is always missing one ingredient when cooking forcing me to go to the shops.

However...

  • I always leave empty beer cans in the shower
  • Drink too much
  • Make Molotov cocktails out of fruits and veges
  • Worryingly leave blood all over the sheets somehow
  • and the rest.....

So yeah - I am a lucky man. Ace McAwesome 19:37, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

In the first week of me coming to university I'd gained a reputation with the people I'd known for about four or five days for leaving beer cans in the bathtub. I blame you for that. SJ Debaser 19:40, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Ah shit, I do all of that... although my partner doesn't make fruit molotovs... Scarlet A.pngpostate 19:49, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I made one out of a very large marrow. Ace McAwesome 19:55, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
At least you have someone. Better than nothing I guess. Тиранесcomplaints 00:08, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

The Gospel According to 'Enry 'Iggins[edit]

Why can't a woman be more like a man?

Men are so honest, so thoroughly square;

Eternally noble, historic'ly fair;

Who, when you win, will always give your back a pat.

Well, why can't a woman be like that?

Why does ev'ryone do what the others do?

Can't a woman learn to use her head?

Why do they do ev'rything their mothers do?

Why don't they grow up- well, like their father instead?

Why can't a woman take after a man?

Men are so pleasant, so easy to please;

Whenever you are with them, you're always at ease.

Would you be slighted if I didn't speak for hours?
Jack Hughes (talk) 10:27, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Cows , and goats are extraterrestrial - er wut ?[edit]

Read it here Hamster (talk) 21:52, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

Hahaha! Why do creationists insist on ever more bizarre explanations for the most mundane things? Do they really think it makes their argument stronger? --Danfly (talk) 22:05, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

I assume poe. That shit is just batshit insane. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 22:25, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
I dunno...if there's one thing I've learned from here, it's that something can never be too insane. Tetronian you're clueless 22:29, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Except that this guy is not a young-Earth creationist, he is pro-evolution. There is some odd stuff there (Darwin died Muslim) including extra-terrestrial cows, but basically he is trying to reconcile the Bible/Quran stories with science.  Lily Inspirate me. 08:14, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Looks like at least some muslims on Yahoo answers are taking the book seriously and it's on Amazon. So, the book is legit from what I can tell. I don't get how cows and goats living on another planet for a time helps their core thesis though.

Hey, a BBC story mentions one of the authors. The really surprising thing is he's the voice of reason in it. --Danfly (talk) 12:39, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Anatem futuo[edit]

A title to make Stephen Fry cry at my ignorance of Latin. Anyway, was hoping to apply to study a MChem at Durham Uni this year only to find that the requirements have changed so I now need A-Level Maths. Okay I say, I didn't study Maths when I was 16-18 but no problem, I can study it my local college! Like hell, went to the college's website and the only A-Levels they offer are AS/A2 Photography, Psychology, and Law, A-Levels that I think we can all agree are absolutely essential for modern life (I for one know just how many doors have closed to me because I don't have my AS Photography). However, the college does offer courses in:

  • VTCT Beauty Therapy (L2)
  • VTCT Advanced Diploma in Beauty Therapy (L3)
  • VTCT Diploma in Complementary Therapies (L3)
  • NVQ in Beauty (L2)
  • VTCT Certificate in Wax Depilation (L2)
  • VTCT Certificate in Nail Treatments (L2)
  • VTCT Certificate in Nail Art (L2)
  • VTCT Diploma Aromatherapy (L3)
  • VTCT Certificate in Reflexology (L3)
  • VTCT Certificate in Body Massage (L3)
  • VTCT Diploma Indian Head Massage (L3)
  • VTCT Certificate in Cosmetic Make Up (L2)

I think it's time to see what the Open Uni can offer me.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 02:29, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Take the Beauty NVQ then apply. When the admissions people say "WTF", quote them:
"The mathematical sciences particularly exhibit order, symmetry, and limitation; and these are the greatest forms of the beautiful." - Aristotle, and
"Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty; a beauty cold and austere, like that of sculpture."' - Bertrand Russell, and
"Why are numbers beautiful? It's like asking why is Beethoven's Ninth Symphony beautiful. If you don't see why, someone can't tell you. I know numbers are beautiful. If they aren't beautiful, nothing is." - Paul Erdos
They'll admit you on the grounds that your balls must be fucking huge. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 02:37, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
e+2 to that. Sen (talk) 02:49, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Running around in circles are we? Then again, I may only be half right. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 02:55, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
On the other hand these courses seem like a good way to meet women. If you like that sort of thing. (That's why I took typing in High School -- at the time I had no way to know that programming was in my future so that it would actually be a handy skill.) Doctor Dark (talk) 03:02, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Alternatively, write the number "0" on a piece of paper then use a pestle and mortar to grind the paper into dust. Dissolve the dust in water, bang it on a piece of goat hide, dilute it again, bang it some more, (dilute and bang){5,} then drink what you've got left. Claim you've studied homeopathic mathematics. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 03:22, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
The title is good Latin, though perhaps it could be anas futuo. May I ask, er, quapropter? Seme Blue 03:32, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Fuck a duck? A common expression round our way to express both astonishment and frustration all in one go. A local college not offering the basic educational tools to get ahead fits that bill (*chuckle*) quite nicely. Requires the emphasis on the first and last words - Fuck a duck. If, after a couple of glasses bucket of claret you and your friends are playing Pro-Evo against the AI and have managed to get four players on your team sent off during the first half then it is a phrase you will hear quite often, at which point it is considered perfectly acceptable to get creative with the phrase - frig a pig, for instance ;-)--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 03:43, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Now that I have looked it up, I see I am right after all. If you had wanted to say "fuck a duck," it would have been anatem futuo. Anas futuo does indeed mean "I fuck old women." Seme Blue 04:24, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Aha, thanks. Title now updated.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 15:22, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
It is shameful how maths has slipped from the list of subjects offered of many smaller/community style universities. If you don't have any joy at Open Uni, email me and I'll send a link to some bridging maths courses that may suit.RagTopGone sailing 06:26, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the offer. Hopefully the Foundation Course at Durham will do the job, it's just waiting to hear info at the moment, but you could be getting an e-mail.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 16:19, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Personally I'd go for the Diploma Indian Head Massage.--BobSpring is sprung! 06:50, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Have you thought of going solo? Many good bookshops stock course materials. Alternatively, why not ask at a local senior school where A-level maths is taught, they may not be able to teach you but they might be able to point you in the right direction.  Lily Inspirate me. 08:55, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

This may be the book you want to look into. Given that you can get it bundled with Chemistry3 suggests it's the right one that was recommended back in my first year (oh heady days...). Here, A-Level maths has never been a requirement but the standards of maths knowledge amongst undergraduates has meant teaching it in 6 weeks is a pain in the arse - and so more science courses are demanding A-Level maths than ever before, (apply to York before they start demanding it too! I'll be teaching you! :P). There's also a massive problem in that the syllabus, compared to many years ago, can't assume knowledge outside that course. So you won't be taught decent maths in any of the major sciences at A-Level, including Physics (FFS!). Anyway, if you want to do an MChem, trust me, learn the maths properly. Even if it requires a gap year while you grab an A-Level in it. (also, I've been totally overusing "fuck a duck" recently! Although given that I live in an area with the highest population of ducks per human head in Europe, the expression is often attracts odd expressions). Scarlet A.pngpostate 14:30, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Mmm, well, the only reason I'm applying to Durham is because I was there before, so I know the campus and the college, but if I can't get in their I could very well be applying to York next year.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 16:13, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, funnily enough, I was thinking of maybe teaching myself the maths, assuming that OU didn't do an equivalent course, and then seeing if I could get the funding to pay to sit the exam at the local college, because I have done A-level equivalent home-study courses before and found them pathetically easy, but it turns out that Durham offers Foundation Courses for mature students to get them up to speed for the degrees. I don't know what the funding situation is, vis a vis the disability, but I'm going to get in touch, find out.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 15:28, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
The OU certainly does introductory maths courses, or least it did when I did my degree with them. Not sure if they would be considered A-Level equivalent though Worm(t | c) 16:00, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, the good news is that as far as funding is concerned the Foundation Course is considered part of the degree, rather than separate, so that's good. Now it's just a case of waiting until the PA's back at the Foundation Centre so I can speak to someone to see if I can apply and what to do next.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 16:12, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Ouch![edit]

Flickr Accidentally Wipes Out Account: Five Years And 4,000 Photos Down The Drain. At least they sound apologetic, and the user is far more calm and reasonable than I would be. Even if he has back-ups, it's like he said; the time to reload them and repair all the broken links on other sites.--Ψ Gremlin話しなさい 11:09, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

As a Unix admin I find it almost incredible that a site offering file hosting services doesn't have backups in place. Heads ought to roll. Jack Hughes (talk) 15:05, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Promethazine[edit]

Any doctorbs here (the 'b' is for bargain)? I have in the past taken a low dose (6mg) of phenergan to help me sleep, and recently ran out. So I went to the pharmacist and bought some more the other day (25mg tabs, so I cut them into quarters) and took a dose last night. I had a kinda odd sensation in my body each time I was about to drift off which is indescribable (never had this before), but the worrying thing was that I woke up in the middle of the night and could feel the bed shaking. Wondering what was wrong I sat up a bit and realised my right arm was convulsing quite badly, which soon passed. I know this is a symptom of promethazine overdose, but as stated I only took a low dose ("Night Nurse" contains 20mg in a single dose) and so I'm wondering if I've developed a reaction to it all of a sudden of if there is a problem with the new tablets and they contain a lot more than the specified dose? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 11:11, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

With the Guardian publishing a supplement on sleep last Saturday and the BBC doing some programming on insomnia, are we having a National Insomnia Week? Seriously, why do you need medication to sleep? You either have problems with your bedroom, have emotional/stress problems, or some physical problem. Most can be rectified either through simple changes or therapy.  Lily Inspirate me. 12:22, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
P.S. Are you obese? Try prayers before bedtime.  Lily Inspirate me. 12:24, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
I've never been able to sleep my entire life. Not worrying, overdrinking, obese (well, overweight I suppose according to BMI, but only in the last few years), drinking caffiene etc. Just sometimes it strikes and I won't sleep for the entire night. Although I could tell the wife that it's lack of nookie... CrundyTalk nerdy to me 12:36, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Nookie obviously helps but when I was getting atrial fibrillation my consultant advised me to cut back on stimulants - mainly alcohol and caffeine. I now usually only have decaff in the latter part of the day and notice that I sleep a lot better. Despite getting on a bit I rarely have to get up for a pee, I don't think obesity is a problem unless you can't lie comfortably. After a comfortable weekend at the Hotel Arts in Barcelona we bought a feather mattress topper and that certainly helps give a better sleep. Also, don't eat too late. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 13:07, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Although I certainly haven't read anything about it to kick off psychosomatic insomnia, I've definitely had it over the last week or so (I attribute it to the fallout from my last drunken escapade). If you've had a reaction to it, you should report it. Seeing a GP would help with it, but you can do it yourself. For the UK it's the Yellow Card scheme but other countries have similar ones. Depending on your allergies, current condition and general metabolism, it's possible to overdose well below the accepted overdose limit. Still, report it. Scarlet A.pngpostate 14:15, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
I doubt a yellow card would help. It's not a new drug and doesn't have the triangle next to it in the BNF so they aren't interested in reports. Plus convulsions are documented in the list of side effects for it. I was just wondering why I've suddenly developed symptoms now after years. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:35, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Either way, you should probably report it to a GP as you're experiencing side effects on what appears to be a low dose (it's not entirely pointless to report a known side effect as you'd be helping with the rate of incidence data if it's recorded properly). It could be the sign of an allergy to some ingredient and that would be important information should you be hospitalised or have serious treatment at some point in the future. Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:08, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Sounds like it's relatively common, but usually in more elderly people[1]:
Parkinsonian-like symptoms are more common in the elderly, whereas children most often develop dystonic reactions, which can be worsened by acute infections or severe dehydration. Dystonic reactions are typically seen during the first week of treatment. Akathisia and parkinsonian-like symptoms usually develop several days to weeks into therapy.
Either way I won't be using it again. I'll just pop to the bathroom and knock one out. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 15:11, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Worryingly I also had problems my entire life trying to get to sleep and then, about seven years ago, I lost ability to sleep almost completely. I now take Seroquel/Quetiapine for their sedative effect, which mostly work, clonazepam to cope with sleep-walking, with zimovane/zopiclone as a backup. Might be worth looking into.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 15:33, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
I started on Zopiclone when I was at school (about 17) and I had to stop taking it because it was leaving a horrible metallic taste in my mouth which would last almost the entire next day. So the doctor moved me onto zolpidem (ambien in the US) which worked, but I was getting what I could only describe as "nocturnal psychosis" combined with amnesia. After being on that for years (yes, years) and realising I had no friends left and no memory of why, I decided that I preferred not sleeping and stopped taking them. Sleeping got a bit easier as time went on, but it still takes me about 3 hours to get to sleep after going to bed and I have to get up at 6am to make the wife's morning coffee, breakfast & lunch, so occasionally I'd pop a phenergan to knock me out and restart my sleep pattern. I guess I could try diphenhydramine as that has no dopaminergic action. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 15:48, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
"Nocturnal psychosis"? At a guess, paranoid thoughts and impulses before going to sleep and then paranoid nightmares where you dream that you are being attacked in bed and wake up to find yourself half-way across the bedroom? Because if "yes" then that's exactly what I get, it's why I'm on the clonazepam. My psychiatrist described it as parasomnia REM Sleep Disorder, and what I've read about it on Wikipedia certainly fits, although in my case I have found myself outside my flat, having gone sleep-walking. A tad embarrasing considering I sleep in the buff.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 16:28, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
No, not paranoia, just going batshit crazy. I would give you an example but I can't remember! Ace had the same problem on ambien, talking bollocks and then driving his car into another car etc. I think I was ringing friends in the middle of the night and talking shit. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 16:40, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Ah, fair enough!--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 16:54, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Exercise (sexercise) balances many aspects of life. It can cure insomnia. Tool Point Zero (talk) 22:24, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
I wish you could convince my psychiatrist of that. 'Doc, I need 30 ladies of negotiable virtue on repeat prescription, stat! ' .--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 00:43, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

A good, jokey article[edit]

From the Grauniad - 'Ka-pow! Why Brits have gone from villains to superheroes '.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 17:09, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Nice article, but dear sweet FSM, as a comic book fan, I thought/hoped the media had outgrown using "ka-pow!" and the like in comics related stories. MDB (talk) 17:29, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Egypt (Again)[edit]

And so the troubles in Egypt seem to have entered a new stage. After reports all day of fighting between Pro-Democracy and Pro-Mubarak supporters the BBC have just reported that the Pro-Democracy supporters in Tahrir Sqaure and around the Museum have managed to drive-off the Mubarak supporters. I wonder if we're seeing regime change via civil war type rioting? It has to be said, I can't remember seeing anything quite like this.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 18:11, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

English Al Jazeera channel (live stream here) is doing live coverage of it. X Stickman (talk) 18:14, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Since we're discussing hypothetical regime changes, what are the chances that a new government will be more hostile towards Israel? --Danfly (talk) 18:25, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

100%, but the question is to what degree? I think only 20% chance that they'll break the peace accord. --Leotardo (talk) 18:33, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
It depends on just how much the military is still in charge. If the military enjoys the same level of influence that they do now, and lets face it, Egypt is a military junta in all but name, then the situation towards Israel won't change. But I'm wondering if the military backing off from the protesters isn't so much a sign of letting the people vent and instead is more a case of the military brass not being sure about the rank and file following orders to prop up Mubarak. There are unconfirmed reports today that there were soldiers at Tahrir Square that were disgusted at not being allowed to support the pro-democracy protesters. The next 36 hours should see. If the military is going to make a move, in one direction or another, then they have to do it before Friday when the weekend begins and the trouble will really kick off after the Friday attendance at the mosques around Cairo and Alexandria. There is already a call for a massive demonstration by the pro-democracy supporters on Friday and if Mubarak wants to stay in power then that's something he's going to have to stop or splinter.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 18:40, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
In the Al Jazeera coverage I've seen today, it seems that the military has taken both sides (to varying degrees). They let pro-mubarak crowds into Tahrir Square (which was previously just anti-mubarak crowds, then a line of military, then pro-mubarak crowds) which led to violence. But then they also seem to be taking "prisoners" from the anti-mubarak crowds; they're capturing pro-mubarak folk who are carrying police IDs, then handing them over to the army (tied up), who seem to be taking them. There's a clip they were showing earlier of a crowd pushing a tied up man onto an army tank and the soldiers standing on top made a show of getting the guy into the tank itself. So... make of that as you will. X Stickman (talk) 18:57, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Wow! You've really been following this closely. Better than any old news site. Incidentally, does anyone know the name of the guy who described the protest as 'virulently anti-American and virulently anti-Democratic'. I didn't hear his name, but I'll take a wild guess he was Republican. --Danfly (talk) 18:48, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

If things ain't complicated enough, it appears as though the pro-Mubarak "demonstrators" are really just plainclothes policemen and and random people grabbed off the streets.--cm2 19:29, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

More Republican Obstructionism[edit]

Republicans Vote To Repeal Obama-Backed Bill That Would Destroy Asteroid Headed For Earth.

Would they print it in The Onion if it weren't true? MDB (talk) 19:15, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

They forgot to put "job-killing" in the title.Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:19, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Well, it was tucked into the text. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 23:00, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
To be fair, where in the constitution does it say that the govt has the authority to destroy asteroids? δλερνερ διαλέγομαι | συνεισφέρω 01:13, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
I should have qualified: Job-killing, puppy-stomping, mean bad ol' bill. :) DLerner is right as well. This is a states' rights issue. Do we really want the federal government dealing with this? That's why we have the tenth amendment, after all.Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 01:25, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Some lunatic comes on Fox News to declare the Second Amendment give citizens the right to own asteroid-deflecting ballistic missiles in 3, 2, 1... Doctor Dark (talk) 03:07, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Warcraft moment[edit]

I just saw a crowd of people trying to pull a guy off a camel riding around downtown Cairo and the first thing that popped into my diseased mind is "psh, I already have that mount. Grinding Ramkehan rep is easy." I hate myself. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svgUser:Nutty Roux/sigtalk 01:13, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Republicans do a U-Turn on "Lock em up and throw away the key"[edit]

For decades Republicans lambasted Democrats for wanting to try to find other ways to deal with criminals than taking them out of society, where they can't be productive and where society has to pay to house them, and where they often come out worse than when they entered. Suddenly, Republicans have realized this isn't so good:

When Harry Coates campaigned for the Oklahoma Senate in 2002, he had one approach to crime: “Lock ’em up and throw away the key.” Now, Coates is looking for that key. He and other tough-on-crime lawmakers across the country, faced with steep budget shortfalls, are anxiously searching for ways to let inmates out of prison faster and keep more offenders on the street. “Truthfully, it’s popular to be tough on crime,” said Coates, a construction company owner from Seminole. “But when I saw what we were spending on corrections and who was going into our adult prisons and for what reasons, you figure out it’s not exactly like you thought,” he said.

Duh! I thought Republicans are supposed to be fiscally responsible, but they often propose things that "sound good" but create deficits because they don't think them through. --Leotardo (talk) 20:30, 1 February 2011 (UTC)

Next up, some joke about the Pope's religion and where bears go potty... Scarlet A.pngpostate 21:37, 1 February 2011 (UTC)
Interestingly, the Conservative Party on the other side of the pond seem to be taking a similar approach. They've always been viewed as the part of, 'law and order,' but police numbers will reduce under them, and I reckon over the next few years, Ken Clarke's prisons policies will be pretty liberal. DalekEXTERMINATE 15:23, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
"Didn't think them through"? Nah, maybe only the teabaggers. Not all the Republicans are idiots, they know they're peddling bullshit. They just need a good cover story. More like: "Oh shit, I promised a massive tax break to my campaign donors and I need a cover story. Uhh, let's see, cutting taxes for the rich creates jobs and grows the economy, thereby increasing revenue and reducing the deficit! Has a poor person ever given you a job? Yeah, that's grade-A material, they'll eat that shit up."Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:15, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
There's a sensible middle ground to be found on prison policy; here in the UK we are far too liberal (for want of a better word), in that we have nasty recidivist criminals constantly be spared jail to continue their offending, and offenders deemed bad enough to be sent down released ever earlier (and you really have to go some to get sent down in the first place). The Police's own stats show that something like half of all crime is committed by only 10,000 people, with another 20% committed by a further 90,000. Keeping these people out of society is beneficial whichever way you look at it. (I know prison places are expensive, but think of the cost each time a person goes through the justice circus - police time investigating, arresting and building a case; CPS time prosecuting, legal aid, court costs, and then of course to cost to victims. With criminals who are intent on repeat offending, it very quickly becomes financially viable to keep them locked up) DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 13:34, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

A True Story Of Daily Mail Lies[edit]

A True Story Of Daily Mail Lies

This seems to be doing the rounds today and I was attempted to submit it to WIGO. However, for reasons stated below, I decided against it and thought I should bring it up here instead. If anyone knows where and how to dig a little better and deeper, let me know. I'm kinda curious as to whether this is really true - I know the paper makes shit up, but something about this just isn't clicking right. This is just a copy/paste from a Facebook comment I made - yes, I love you guys so much you're not even going to get RW exclusive prose on the subject.

As fun as that article is, I am more than a little concerned that I can't find any corroborating evidence for what it says. The DM site certainly doesn't have it, even though its online archives go back to 1990s at least. Articles usually aren't completely pulled unless it goes to court, out-of-court settlements usually don't lead to retractions. And while Juliet S mentions (in the comments section of a relevant plug on The Guardian's website) that she complained to the PCC there doesn't seem to be a record of it in its database, which goes back to 1996 and logs far more mundane things than this. The idea that the PCC would give an "underwhelming" response to an article as inaccurate as claimed here is a little far fetched.

Considering the closing paragraph, which is clearly against recent libel reform, I'm wondering if it may be somewhat massaged by someone who would stand to lose its ability to threaten with libel if the law was reformed - I imagine a PR company could fall into that category. If I wanted to rally the UK Left against libel reform, citing that it would let the Daily Mail continue to publish crap would be where I'd start. Especially considering that even under the proposed reforms you'd still definitely win in a case where a paper printed things this objectively inaccurate.

Surely, if someone claims to have boxes of paperwork they'd certainly have a copy of the original, printed article. I wouldn't be doing my job as an evidence obsessed and pedantic freak if I didn't demand a scan of it to accompany the blog post. Scarlet A.pngpostate 01:41, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

What you would need to do is visit the British Library Newspapers repository in Colindale, north London. The printed record of the original article would still be available if the blog is true. You can search the integrated catalogue (newspaper sub-set) but a cursory search for "Sex and the Country" didn't give me any hits. At least the article specifies the publication date - 11 September 2003. It may be possible that some larger regional libraries have newspaper archives as they often make papers available on a daily basis.  Lily Inspirate me. 08:41, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
A quick google reveals an article on thefreelibray.com a bit down the page which the search summary says is by the Daily Fail, but it seems to have been pulled. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 11:17, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Although that article is dated 18 February 1999, so either it's a different article or Ms Shaw is not checking her facts. Also check through that list and you will notice that "sex and the country" seems to be a DM obsession.  Lily Inspirate me. 11:39, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
She does mention in the comments on the Guardian blog post that she requested that the online article be removed, and that it has been. "I asked for the article to be removed when I lodged my claim. I also asked for it to be removed from several article sites, which it has been." Some of the blogs I read (angrymob, tabloid-watch etc...) have pointed out quite a few times that the daily mail will simply vanish articles from its website when there are complaints about them (or they're proven wrong, or they have to issue an apology, or whatever) and never mention the fact that they've done it; the articles just disappear. It could be a case of that. Daily Mail seems to know their Streisand effect quite well. X Stickman (talk) 13:18, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
The situation is very Ken-like. She has the evidence memory-holed but then proceeds to complain about it. I have no reason to doubt her but I see no evidence to support her either: as much as I would like the Mail to be pilloried for it. Do we have anyone who lives in north London and who could follow this up?  Lily Inspirate me. 13:48, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
My university library tends to have some newspapers. Could be available there. Scarlet A.pngpostate 14:34, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Well allow me to jump in with my size nines (US size tens): I think Ms Shaw is talking bollocks. There are two options here;
  1. She agreed to do this to drum up some free publicity for her PR-whoring activities, she did indeed say most of those things that she claims are fabricated, not realising that the silly working class country bumpkins would see through it and give her the mockery she deserved for such pathetic ramblings. Then when her plan backfires massively in her face, she gets immediately on the defensive and tries to distance herself from her embarrassing interview.
  2. None of this happened. She's now fabricating an entire scandal to drum up publicity for her PR-whoring activities. It's dead simple Jules, post a scan of the original article and I will humbly apologise, otherwise, I consider you to be a liar.
DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 13:14, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Cool map[edit]

The Economist has a cool map that labels each American state with the country that has an economy the same size. --Leotardo (talk) 18:31, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

That's pretty neat. And in case any future viewers don't notice, there's also a map that compares the population of each state with a matching country. ~SuperHamster Talk 18:38, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Is it just me or are oil producing countries focused heavily in the Northeast on that map? --Danfly (talk) 19:09, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Good find! I'd be interested in breaking that down per capita, since the populations are probably different in some cases, but still, very interesting. Alpha (talk) 19:26, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
For example, Peru (~29 million) and Nevada (~2.7 million) but nevertheless, an interesting comparison. Alpha (talk) 19:34, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

That's pretty fascinating - that NY is the size of the Australian economy is impressive, but that Louisiana has that of Bangladesh is...expected? Here's another map, this one much more freaky. Go Southern New Mexico! DogP (talk) 06:33, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

That is interesting. But what I found most interesting was the concentration of GDP in the handful of top US states. I had imagined a more even distribution.--BobSpring is sprung! 15:31, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Crystal of invisibility[edit]

University of Birmingham researchers have developed a crystal device that can "cloak" objects in the visible light spectrum. GooRoo (talk) 07:08, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

But only if you have a level five cleric in the team. Jack Hughes (talk) 12:20, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Sounds little different from the trick where you make a coin disappear by putting it under a glass and filling it with water. It's interesting optics, for sure, but I wish the papers (and press releases, undoubtedly) would stop shouting "Harry Potter's invisibility cloak" all over the place! Scarlet A.pngpostate 12:33, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
@ Jack No, you are thinking of Invisibility Purge. Clerics don't get invisibility w/out Domains. Тиранесwithstand guru, lick bank heist? 12:48, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
"The cloak renders the object underneath invisible, although the cloak itself can still be seen" - so it's a towel then? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:30, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
I agree, it's a poorly written article but when Harry Potter is mentioned first you know it's not going to be nuclear science. GooRoo (talk) 00:38, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Telemarketers (redux)[edit]

A couple of weeks ago I posted here about some Indian scammers phoning me and trying to get me to run the Event Viewer in Windows. In my latest 'Windows Secrets' newsletter I found out the details of what they were trying to do.  Lily Inspirate me. 10:18, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

That article isn't strictly true. If you use an MSDN support incident then you get a phonecall from someone who could be almost anywhere. We've used two incidents so far both of which we got a phonecall about, one was in Germany and one was in India, so just saying that if it's an overseas call it's a scam isn't true. However if you get a call without logging a support incident and getting email confirmation then it is a scam. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:30, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, I didn't really mean that bit but you are talking about the MSDN which has a usually lot more technical savvy audience is it not? My call was completely out of the blue saying my computer had notified them of a fault. I'm not a geek but I know enough to do some basic stuff. My aim was just to alert people to the event viewer thing. At the time I did find it myself and could see nothing amongst the red flags that warranted concern but like that teddy bear virus (jdbgmgr.exe) not everyone is so clued up. Although most people here put me to shame I would think it helps to be aware what the current scams are in case a friend or relative gets called.  Lily Inspirate me. 12:40, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
That scam is exactly what happened at home about 6 months ago. It didn't work. Broccoli (talk) 13:20, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

AlJazeera English[edit]

Is anyone else not able to connect to Al-J's live coverage of Cairo--especially those of you outside US-America? P-Foster (talk) 14:23, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Found it here if anyone is interested...P-Foster (talk) 14:27, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Works for me in the UK. Ajkgordon (talk) 14:43, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
They also have a live stream on their youtube channel, which I guess is more likely to work if the others don't. X Stickman (talk) 19:51, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

There is still hope for mankind[edit]

While World Net Daily and Fox News report about scary Muslims in Egypt, Egyptian Christians are protecting Muslims while they're at prayer. MDB (talk) 16:26, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Expose Planned Parenthood[edit]

I just happened to bring up Conservapedia, and saw the "Expose Planned Parenthood" thing. This one. My first thought was, "that doesn't seem right". So, Planned Parenthood has already reported them to the FBI. They do a bang up job of cover-ups at the Planned Parenthood. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 18:12, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

I almost wrote a thread about this. The 'Planned Parenthood sting' was an abject failure. From my favorite writer: "These conservative undercover "hoaxes" are best understood as an attempt to make their fantasies real. In order to make animate the world that they feverishly imagine, they must themselves become the unsavory characters with bad motivations that they enjoy thinking populate these hotbeds of degenerate liberal activity." --Leotardo (talk) 19:12, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
But they haz it the video! Facts don't matter to ideologues, they just need MEAT, (or video of meat). 22:57, 3 February 2011 (UTC) C®ackeЯ

Struggling to believe this is true, but if it is it's hilarious[edit]

I can only find this story on such reputable outlets as the daily fail and metro, but Man Puts Wife On No-Fly List, stranding her in Pakistan so he doesn't have to see her again. Isn't it great that anonymous bureaucrats can fuck up your life with no oversight and no appeal? Makes you proud to be British. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 19:07, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

It is odd that none of the reputable newspapers cover this, & I tend to doubt stories that don't name names or cite sources. But on the other hand, since it relates to activities of a government department, it's unlikely that a paper could get away with making it all up. WéáśéĺóíďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:24, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
I read about that a couple of days ago: can't remember where. 19:58, 3 February 2011 (UTC) SusanG Toast

Lewd fork[edit]

Thanks for sending me to that DM page with it's link to M&S's latest lingerie range. I think that there's a bit too much camel toe on show for a family newspaper. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 20:06, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

It's amazing how many women don't realise that you shouldn't wear white underwear under tight white clothes, beige (or in this case flesh) is a much better choice. Also M&S seems rather late on the bandwagon. I recall this being a big thing in the American fashion mags about a year ago.  Lily Inspirate me. 20:14, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

It's back![edit]

Everybodies' favourite cephalopod - the Pacific Northwest tree octopus, once more rears its shy and retiring head.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 16:59, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

NTSAТиранесcomplaints 17:00, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Yep. Proof, if needed, of humanity's enduring inability to learn. How long has the octopus been around? 13 years? You would have though that the internet would have made people more cynical, what with phishing scams and wotnot, but apparently not.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 17:04, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Not surprising, I just had an argument with my cousin that Dinosaurs and humans have lived at the same time. She used http://s8int.com as her reference. And she just started attending UofM. But, in fairness, she was always a bit... dumb. If anything, I think that the immense amount of good sites has made it harder for.. less than intelligent people to have a good grasp on "good knowledge" and "shit knowledge", thereby keeping such absurd topics alive. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 17:13, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
Ronald Reagen had a deficit? What are you talking about? My Grandmother, last night. Тиранесconfuse lava, edit garbage bin? 17:16, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
The story is in the Daily Mail, so is presumably bobbins.--

Kriss AkabusiAAAWOOOGAAAR!!1 17:27, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

It's amazing that the Mail criticises youngsters for believing everything they read on the Internet without the slightest hint of irony that old people believe (and are frightened by) everything they read in the Daily Mail.  Lily Inspirate me. 19:04, 2 February 2011 (UTC)
The Daily Mail school of "recycle something from 1998 and stick the word 'Facebook' on it" journalism. Pegasus (talk) 02:13, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
This is the first I have seen of this tree octopus story. Not knowing anything much about octopus if I had come across this story else I would see no reason to question it. There are stranger things in nature that are real after all. You have to take some things on faith. If it is something that I am interested in or effects me, I might take a closer look, but this, which effects me not at all, and I have knowledge of, I will look at and think 'isn't that nice' and move on. AMassiveGay (talk) 15:48, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Theodore Gray[edit]

I showed the loved one this site a couple of days ago. The book just arrived from Amazon. Plus his book The Elements. Countdown to lease-breaking household explosion in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ... - David Gerard (talk) 19:20, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

There was a Dr Theodore Gray in Viz once. "Doctor Theodore Gray and his Amazing Growth Spray" was part of a 4-page "mad doctor" pull-out in issue 14. I've never been able to take the real one seriously. Totnesmartin (talk) 14:26, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Seven flavours of vulgarity[edit]

I dont know how many people here know of the Wellington Sevens but it is a huge event here in my city. Every year, for two days, the entire city goes fancy dress. Seriously, it is an amazing spectical. Like nothing I have ever seen anywhere else in the world. I leave my office and four men, dressed as telly-tubbies are vomiting on the street at 11am. Little bo-peeps wave champagne bottles at policemen while Osama Bin Laden orders 5 pints at a flash bar downtown. Truly one of the worlds great events. But vulgar it is. I fucking love it. Ace McAwesome 11:43, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

I'm rather skeptacle about this spectical. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 11:55, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
yes. Ace McAwesome 11:59, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Meh. We lost to fucking France. Stoopid game. That said, Sevens' tournaments are teh awesome. I've managed to take in our version, down in George, as well as the Hong Kong tourney. Seriously, even if you have no clue what Sevens is, try and watch it live. Hell, even you Merkins have a tourney. --Ψ GremlinParla! 12:15, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Sevens rugby is damn hard. I played it once in a tournament. I scored my team's only try, needless to say we didn't do particularly well. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:28, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Just something I remembered...[edit]

... when thinking about Egypt, and hoping it doesn't end up like Iran.

I remember reading one of journalist Linda Ellerbee's books, when she writes about covering the Iranian revolution.

She came upon a crowd of protestors, and they were chanting "Death to Carter! Death to Carter!"

That eventually switched to the old favorite, "Death to U-S-A! Death to U-S-A!"

The leaders of the protest tried to get them to switch to "Death to imperialist State Department!" or some such, but that doesn't flow well, and the chants petered out. Ellerbee and her camera operator found the leader of the protest, and convinced him to use a chant that would win sympathy among Americans. So, that night, millions of Americans turned on their TV news to watch Iranians chant "Death to I-R-S! Death to I-R-S!" MDB (talk) 17:33, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

What did Miles Copeland do to offend her? Totnesmartin (talk) 18:08, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Different IRS. MDB (talk) 19:01, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
I did actually know that. Totnesmartin (talk) 21:54, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Start using LiquidThreads in the Saloon?[edit]

Cut to Forum:Liquid threads in the Saloon Bar at 21:01, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Deletion of threads people don't like...[edit]

Moved to TWIGO:CP 00:19, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

BBC vs Mexicans[edit]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gN27WqPGLcY

Why don't you suck my Mexican dick? That was not even funny. --Tlaloc (talk) 03:14, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

It's only funny if you know nothing about real Mexicans. But if your only knowledge of Mexico comes from 1950s cartoons - if, perhaps, you aren't even really aware that Mexico is a real country - then it could be funny. Top Gear's problem is that they're being broadcast all over the world, not just clowning around for the benefit of mates in the pub who are exactly the same as them.--

Kriss AkabusiAAAWOOOGAAAR!!1 10:44, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Brits being racist, and they will no doubt excuse it as "it's only a joke". Never seen that before... Without even trying, it's dumber than Bill O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh combined. It's quite fascinating how the UK produces a lot of the best television in the world, and also the absolute worst. Dendlai (talk) 12:01, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Brits being racist, eh? Fuck off. Ajkgordon (talk) 12:15, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Sorry about that. I'm drunk, and only really edit while drunk, and thus I express myself... badly. It's my memories of reading the NME and MM in the late 80s and early 90s, and remembering how they casually put racist headlines on *any* article covering a band that was not English. Like any french band without snails and frog legs references being a constant for example. Or Swedish bands without talking about vodka, suicide and snow. Even Scottish and Welsh bands got the same treatment. It intrigued me, because in most respects, the NME and MM were very leftist, but they were so incredibly casually racist it was baffling. I have no idea how that was possible, but really... What? Dendlai (talk) 12:24, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
The definition of "racist" aside, taking the piss out of national stereotypes is a British pastime. We do it to ourselves as well. And it works perfectly well to a British audience who don't think - generally at least - that Mexicans are lazy, asleep, etc. But you're right - they have an international audience and should perhaps be a little more careful. If they had left it as a single throw-away line then they would have got away with it. It was too much, IMO.
Of course there are people in Britain who are racist. But I reject that we are particularly racist. And labelling an entire nation racist because of Jeremy Clarkson and headlines in a 80s music paper is perhaps racist in itself?
Being drunk is a very good excuse, btw. And, I should add, not a Mexican trait in any way :) Ajkgordon (talk) 12:39, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, uhm, yes, being drunk isn't Mexican, right. The thing is I am Swedish... Though I am drunk on wine not vodka if that helps... The point being, when you are in a circle that knows you, you can say one thing, and it's ok. In my circle of friends, I routinely make Mexican and Indian jokes, because some of them are of those ethnicities and know me, so they know what I mean. And they regularly make jokes about the Swedish Bikini Team etc. But a TV program can never be that because you have no idea who watches, so it can't make assumptions about how the viewer perceives the one making the joke. Context. Dendlai (talk) 12:56, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Quite agree. Ajkgordon (talk) 13:01, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
It's not funny, no. When I watched it on Sunday night, I took a short intake of breath at that moment. I mean, you expect a lot of national banter, like they have with Australians and Germans but it's generally good-natured. Even the invading Poland thing wasn't a patch on the Mexican comments. Not impressed. Ajkgordon (talk) 12:17, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
It was probably the furthest they've gone with that sort of thing. But you know, they have a certain quota for controversy each series, I assume they just wanted it out of the way early. Scarlet A.pngpostate 12:28, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Top Gear hardly plays the political correctness game, but then again they can be also self-effacing at times. This clip seems very lazy and dated in its stereotypes - more "Speedy Gonzales" than "Bring me the head of Alfredo Garcia" and wetbacks.  Lily Inspirate me. 12:49, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Get a fucking grip of yourself, Tlaloc and Dendlai. Oh, Dendy, as Ajk as touched on, none of the groups you mention are races. DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 20:05, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Sober, so just one point... In English, race is frequently used to mean ethnicities. And biologically, people with black skin and people with white skin are the same race et cetera. Talking about different human races is entirely unscientific. Dendlai (talk) 23:37, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
So the BBC have apologised, which is the polite thing to do. It would have been better, though, if instead of complaining, His Excellency the Mexican ambassador had responded in kind by saying "the Top Gear team and everyone who likes them are half-witted two year olds in the bodies of beer bellied men with tiny todgers", to the tune of the Mexican national anthem.--

Kriss AkabusiAAAWOOOGAAAR!!1 11:59, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Yes, but witty retorts aren't the way politicians work, right? You can't fight racist/puerile humour by being serious, only by being funnier than the racist/puerile humour. Scarlet A.pngpostate 14:33, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
The Top Gear presenters are in fact all intelligent, educated and knowledgeable men. Clarkson's TV special on the Victoria Cross a few years ago was fantastic. I boggle at how thick they behave for the ratings - David Gerard (talk) 10:53, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Cottingley Fairies[edit]

Noticed this story on Wikipedia today, thought it was a nice read. Sen (talk) 15:43, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Our rather feeble effort. Jack Hughes (talk) 15:47, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Reminds me of this JREF thread where someone was saying they could see loads of fairies in their photographs. I mean just look at all the fairies in this photo! CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:04, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
I live just outside Cottingley, about a mile from where the photos were taken. Shows how society changes so much with the media: People believed this, as they never would now... just as the Exorcist was a terrifying film when released, and now it's just a bit funny. DalekEXTERMINATE 15:09, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Cottingley is a classic. Certainly a personal favourite, not least because I collect fairy figurines :P. Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:11, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Just when we had finally came to a conclusion you reveal something and nothing happens. Тиранесvomit minefield, shove Playstation? 15:26, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Et viola - David Gerard (talk) 10:59, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Whut? WeaseloidWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 11:57, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Fairies - David Gerard (talk) 14:36, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
That was actually kinda funny. Тиранесdeconstruct brisket, employ queen? 00:36, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

DVD[edit]

Gah shit fuck damn bollocks! I let the wife put a few films on the online DVD rental list a while ago, and what comes through the door today? The Last Airbender. She's just put it on. Can I talk to you guys? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 20:11, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

What's a DVD? Is it one of those things you would listen to on a gramophone? --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 21:04, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
dvd is a round flat shiny disc. I rarely get past the ohh, shiny rainbows bit , so dunno whats on them. The last airbender is supposed to be good in a Jap anime sort of way. Hamster (talk) 21:16, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
They are even cooler if you put them in the microwave. Sen (talk) 22:47, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
That's weird, I always thought that the microwave is for making things hot. But then again I've never been a very good cook. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 22:49, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Another good one is putting a whole egg in the microwave and turning it on high. Doctor Dark (talk) 23:21, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
I've heard the cartoon is supposed to be good but the movie was a steaming turd. So people tell me, at least.Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 04:02, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, considering it only got 20% on MetaCritic I guess it wasn't that bad. Not good, but not awful. One of the baddies was really miscast and the fight scenes were pretty piss poor. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 09:28, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Last Bendover cartoon is the US cartoon industry trying to make Japanese anime, and doing sort of ok. Last Bendover movie is what you show anybody who still says "M. Night Showmyshlong is pretty awesome, he made Sixth Sense, remember." To call it a steaming heap of rancid faeces is an insult to steaming heaps of rancid faeces everywhere. If it transpires that Crundy suddenly beat Mrs C to death with an empty DVD box, most juries would let him off, knowing that he'd been forced to watch Last Bendover. It's specifically mentioned under the whole "cruel and unusual punishment" clause. --Ψ GremlinZungumza! 10:06, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Divorce. She is a lost cause. I kid. In all seriousness, you still have a TK related sig, Crundy FairyCupcake (talk) 16:35, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
That's true. I'll remove it now. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 16:54, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Anti-bullying messages are faggy[edit]

The good old right wing. They support child abuse (calling it discipline). They support rape. They support torture. They support brutal dictators over democracy. Now they're in favor of bullying:

“Nobody wants a child to be bullied,” [Burgoyne] acknowledges. “Nobody wants a child to [be] hurt. Most people say ‘Oh, great! We’re teaching our children not to bully each other’ — which is a good thing. But it’s being used instead to push the homosexual message.”

Basically, find something that no decent person could ever support and you'll find a right-winger who is in favor of that, usually self-righteously by pointing to some chapter in the Bible that says god wants it. --Leotardo (talk) 20:48, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Doing nothing to prevent it or further hurting the victim is being an asshole, not supporting it. - π 22:51, 3 February 2011 (UTC)
Actually, doing nothing to prevent it is implicitly supporting it. That's why I can be arrested if I don't tell the police I know about certain crimes before they happen. SirChuckBBATHE THE WHALES!!!! 05:38, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
They support child labor as well as child abuse now. (Courtesy rising wingnut star Mike Lee.)Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:51, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
They also support children getting cancer over having sex. --Leotardo (talk) 21:09, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Obviously the solution to bullying is just to be the bully, then. It's an excellent analogy for the attitudes of most wingnuts. Scarlet A.pngpostate 20:02, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Wingnuts have, unfortunately, decided to perpetuate the use of the old arguments that, for example, when Reds said "freedom of speech," what they really meant was, "freedom to shut inconvenient dissenters up." Made perfect sense in that context, not so much now. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 20:07, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Reds are everywhere, so your paranoia is healthy. Occasionaluse (talk) 20:18, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Just when I thought I understood what the "homosexual agenda" is, now I have to freakin' figure out what the "homosexual message" is. "I have a message for you! It's homosexual!" --Leotardo (talk) 20:47, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, obviously the "homosexual message" is "you shouldn't be beaten to death if you're gay" and obviously that should be repressed. We don't want those queers getting all uppity, and deciding they're "real people" too. If teens being bullied to the point of suicide, or literally beaten to death, then they obviously serve as a message to the other fags that it's not cool to be gay. Why would we ever want to change this wonderful system?? It's just survival of the fittest applied to school children. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 14:57, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
What they should be much more worried about is the homosexual massage. Sorry, couldn't resist. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 14:58, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Google art project[edit]

Is this [2] old news? Tmtoulouse (talk) 23:55, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Well, it was launched just a few days ago, so no? Pretty cool project, though. ~SuperHamster Talk 00:06, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
If this takes off properly, looks like it could be fantastic! DalekEXTERMINATE 15:28, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
At least we might be able to get that report on the Creation Museum that we've been promising ourselves for so many years. Before responding please consider the possibility that humour, sarcasm or irony may have been used in the preceding post. Thank you.--BobSpring is sprung! 18:24, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, you get user submitted photos, so has anyone put PZ Myers riding the dinosaur onto Street View yet? Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:26, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Gosh, well I never. Raging nutters found[edit]

http://beforeitsnews.com/ - out there reporting on every imaginable and unimaginable conspiracy theory. Bill Gates and the pansexual agenda! Wikileaks suppresses UFO cable!! Wikileaks SECRET MESSAGE REPORT!!! I have yet to find anything out about them apart from their site itself. Anyone else know anything about them? The FAQ says they're xoom.com dot.com refugees, so may just be enabling the conspiracy nutters and using them for crowdsourcing rather than true believers themselves - David Gerard (talk) 16:37, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Hey...[edit]

Could somebody unlock my userpage for me? I'm probably not sticking around; I'm not snarky or non-religious enough, but I do want to put something on there. Thanks. DanH (talk) 01:22, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

opinions on the American healthcare reform bill[edit]

Does anyone have any opinions on the newest American healthcare reform bill that they'd be willing to offer? It's an oft-repeated issue here, I know, but I'm curious. I realize this isn't strictly a United States community by any means, but anything you know or personal opinions you'd like to share is great. Thanks! αTalk 19:43, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

I must admit the Egypt thing has stopped me from following American politics this week, so I don't know about the newest reform bill? Do you have a link explaining it? I can say as a Brit that I freakin' love socialised medicine. I think that the Republican's arguments have ranged from wrong to despicable. DO people need 'a level of cover that's appropriate to them'? No. A millionaire and a pauper both want to receive cancer treatment. DO I mind paying more taxes, in the knowledge that people who could not afford medical treatment will get it? No. Honestly, I think it's a fundamental right, that in this day and age, people shouldn't die from treatable illness. DalekEXTERMINATE 19:55, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
By "latest American heathcare reform bill" do you mean the "Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act"? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 19:57, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Dalek, I think what you're forgetting is that Americans (which I am proud to be) tend to be rather selfish. Whenever you hear someone say "America has the best health care system in the world." You can bet your last shilling that they have a great insurance program (like Congressional Representatives). A lot of people have an "I got mine" attitude. They really don't mind that millions of people have no insurance and have to literally decide if their sickness is worth going to see a doctor as long as their taxes stay low. SirChuckBCall the FBI 21:54, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
The idiotic thing about healthcare reform is that real reform would save money. Take a look at the CBO health care costs calculator. With a healthcare system comparable to just about anywhere else in the first world, our deficit would be gone entirely. Yep, that's how shitty it is. We will be saving lives and money at the same time with a public option/single-payer. The Republicans are simply shilling for insurance companies (Dems aren't so much better, though) with their "repeal and re-whatever" plan. They didn't like the CBO numbers so they just issued their own report using RepubliMath(TM) to claim that repeal would decrease the deficit, then they slipped in the redefining rape thing which fortunately got thrown out. The repeal doesn't have a snowball's chance of passing anyway, but once again, our politicians have simply said "Fuck you" to the American people. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 05:05, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
I hadn't heard about the efforts to redefine rape in the bill presented by Republicans; I was referring to the actual bill that the Democrats managed to eviscerate enough to force it through Congress, but the revelation about rape is sickening, but alas not surprising, to me. I guess I can understand that anti-abortion groups want to remove as much possibility of federal funding as possible, but it's simply a removal of rights! The fact that (as the article states) some states don't even define forcible rape presents a worrisome legal loophole. My source for that comment, if anyone's interested, is here. I realize it's Mother Jones, which maybe isn't the best source, but it was near the top of the Google results. αTalk 16:44, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
It's not about "redefining" rape at all - that's just some rhetoric to make it seem a little more monstrous (although I think what they have done is worse). It's about introducing unnecessary ambiguity into it. As a friend of mine in law school said, the perfect legal system should have a code featuring only four word sentences and no adjectives. The proposal would mean you couldn't get a taxpayer assisted (of course, noting that those rich bods who can pay are fine) unless you have the prerequisite number of black eyes. This is horseshit because the law shouldn't be in the position of introducing extra ambiguity to argue about but reducing it - as you said, it's a very worrying legal loophole with some serious implications that could be argued in many ways. But, nice job assholes, you tried to worm out of looking like heartless monsters by adding a "rape exception" and made yourselves look like unthinking buffoons in the process. Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:24, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Well. Not to get back on target or anything. I'm disappointed that the health care bill wasn't stronger. But I am for "socialized" medicine. Ideally, the reduction in health care expenses, and the shifting of the burden from my employer to the government would increase my paycheck. Since the taxes on me would still be less than what I pay in insurance at work. Yeah, employers could just pocket the rest, and if so, then it increases the companies bottom line. I'm still pretty sure the increase in taxes are less than what is paid in healthcare. So, with those kind of numbers, I'm not sure why republicans are against it. (I'm the first to admit, I may be wrong about the non-numbers above. I haven't looked into it in well over a year, but that seems to be what I remember.) Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 18:23, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
No, your statements are 100% correct. What you describe is more or less how it works in most other first world countries. What we forget here is that there is no healthcare "debate," just partisan whining and industry shills spewing talking points. Notice the explosion of scare stories about Canadian and UK health care in the media last year, or all the lobbyist astroturf like the "Hands off My Healthcare" Teabagger tours, organized and bussed by insurance lobbyists, natch. Republicans are against reform even if it costs everyone more money and good health because one, they have to keep the campaign contributions rolling in, and two, as Mitch McConnell said, their "goal is to make Obama a one-term president." The individual mandate was a Republican idea, but now they're against it because Obama is for it. Dems had to come up with a health care plan that would not rock the boat too much as they need to keep their own contributors happy (insurance co's play both sides of the aisle of course) and it had to be able to get past the Republicans in the senate, but they still had to use the reconciliation process in the end anyway. Single-payer and public option were off the table from the beginning, they were just bargaining chips to be tossed away. Read Matt Taibbi's Sick and Wrong to see how the game was played. Sick and wrong is the only way to describe it -- for every denied claim or uninsured person, our politicians should be lashed with wet noodles. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 22:57, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

What a way to spend your friday night.[edit]

My laptop's main fan has finally given up the ghost, meaning after close to four years of loyal service it will shortly be dead. I'm currently attempting to keep it alive by holding an icecube tray to the underside while I franticly try and remove all the important data to external hard disk. I can't explain how tedious this is, so I'm sharing the pain with all of you. Enjoy. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 00:31, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

I feel for you. Sadly, I cannot quite reach you. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 01:34, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
It could be worse. You could be smoking G13 watching Lost Boys: The Thirst eating wheat table crackers with your dog. I'm not talking about myself, of course...just sayin' - could be worse. Hold tight lil' 'puter! --Leotardo (talk) 03:02, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
WTF. I didn't know they made any Lost Boys sequels. As if the first one wasn't cheesy enough. Someone needs to drive a truck full of new ideas right up Hollywood's arses. Like now. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 05:36, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Believe it or not, there's at least two Lost Boys sequels, both with Corey Feldman reprising his role as one of the Frog Brothers. They are almost unbearable to watch. Almost. There's even a creepy moment in the 2008 Thirst sequel when Corey Feldman puts a highly valuable Superman comic on the grave of Sam, who was played by Corey Haim in the original, who overdosed in 2010. --Leotardo (talk) 13:27, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Turn the puter off, take out the hard drive, put it in one of those little $20 USB enclosures. Unless you're enjoying yourself with the ice trays and all. Doctor Dark (talk) 06:22, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Nah, for true computer nerd cred you've got to do it the hard and inexpensive way! So ice cubes it is. Or liquid nitrogen, which is something I've been wanting to try for a while... Scarlet A.pngpostate 19:20, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
I remember that some Russians got a 1 Ghz CPU to 5GHz or something using liquid N a few years back. Тиранесerect lowbrow, unify operating theater? 00:35, 6 February 2011 (UTC)
I don't know about that, but LEDs get really efficient when dipped in liquid N2 and can carry a porkload of current at that temperature. Drifting vapors, bright lights coming out of the neck of a dewar... parsecs better than a flashlight under the chin in a darkened room. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 03:41, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Alien Resistance Movement[edit]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ko3t0RnkqBY

A classic from Louis Theroux. This is pretty much what RW looks at in a nutshell. Scarlet A.pngpostate 01:27, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

If I got to call myself "Lord Commander" and use a mind-gun, I just might... Seme Blue 21:32, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

Vote to have an alternative to the Saloon bar using LiquidThreads[edit]

Please vote here. Unicow (talk) 17:01, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

Meh. (talk) 17:04, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

Happy Birthday, Ronald Ray-Gun[edit]

So sweet. P-Foster (talk) 22:00, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

Anyone heard of this guy?[edit]

http://richardkulisz.blogspot.com/ - Amusing for an abusive frothing lunatic. Like Lubos Motl without the track record. Even when he's insightful he can't help but chuck in some rabid abuse. Was he ever on Usenet? - David Gerard (talk) 16:58, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

That's a special brand of crazy you've got there. Never heard of him though. Tetronian you're clueless 13:10, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Super Bowl Sunday![edit]

Go Steelers. YEAAAAA!Quackpack11! | Talk! Scream! Share! 22:09, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

I'm going shopping, (where? I dunno as EVERYTHING will be closed because some millionaires in Dallas are playing polo footsball, (the only game named "football" wherein one gets a penalty for kicking the ball if it happens during a non-kicking play). 22:21, 6 February 2011 (UTC) C®ackeЯ
I was just wondering, given that there's only 2 minutes left... who should I be supporting? It's difficult to tell which team represent godless lie-bur-uls when they all where that padding stuff. Surely one team represents our lord and god and the other is the very embodiment of George Soros? –SuspectedReplicant retire me 02:59, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
My mother has always been a Green Bay fan. I don't care, it is an excuse to eat junkfood. Тиранесdiscombobulate fib, ruminate oxide? 03:01, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I support Green Bay, because the Steelers are the rivals of my local team, who also happen to, well, suck. ~SuperHamster Talk 03:06, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Well Green Bay won, and it turns out they're owned by the fans. I don't know whether that's a grassroots campaign against government or filthy socialism. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 03:20, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
A football team owned by fans???? COMMUNISM! Тиранесoscillate potato chip, withstand respiratory system? 03:21, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
No, no, communism would be nicking the team from its owner in order to give it to the nomenklatura glorious proletarian fans. A more appropriate comparison is that the Packers represent capitalism and the other teams represent feudalism. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 03:49, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I am being sarcastic. Тиранесdisintegrate squibble, employ chromosome? 03:50, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I was aware of that; hardly anyone seems to take communism seriously around here. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 03:55, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Good that the Steelers lost, just because I don't want to miss the city exploding. I lived there during the 2009 Superbowl riot, it was awesome. The entire city went ape and mounted officers and riot cops were crawling all over the city.Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 04:34, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, they had all the riot police and whatnot out again this year, but all that happened was a couple burning sofas in the Bloomfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh. No biggie. But I got to give it to Green Bay, they whooped our ass. Aboriginal Noise Theist, barely hanging by a nail 11:58, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
My housemate stayed up watching it til about 3am. I watched about 10 minutes of it and had no clue what was going on. My inherited British modesty prevents me from "getting" the ten or so ceremonies they have throughout the course of the game. SJ Debaser 12:16, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I managed not to watch a single solitary moment of the game yesterday. I had already seen the best commercial anyway.
The only reason I even checked to see what the score was to see if I had one the office pool. (I didn't.) MDB (talk) 12:23, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
It's wp:RBS Six Nations over here at the moment. I bet my mate a fiver on Saturday Ireland would beat Italy. 13-11 Ireland. That got me two drinks. SJ Debaser 12:31, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Ah yes, American football. Where they don't use their feet and the big pansies wear padding in case they get hurt. Now rugby, that's a game played by men with odd-shaped balls. --Ψ GremlinHable! 17:32, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Having just moved from where Green Bay was my "home team" I'm quite excited they won. I didn't watch the game, but I did tune in for the final few plays. Now where I live, my "home team" is one of the few to have never made it to a Super Bowl. Not once. So Green Bay is as much excitement as I get for the Super Bowl. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 23:48, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

We've got our own nutters in the UK[edit]

We wanna start our own creationist school! 15:03, 7 February 2011 (UTC) SusanG Toast

And who didn't see this coming with the whole "free school" thing? I like the last comment: "If evolution is true then life has no purpose". Oh well I guess it must be false then. After all, I'd hate to think my life had no purpose. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 15:06, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
In contrast, a College Chaplain in the US tells 'em to get out of biology teaching 15:12, 7 February 2011 (UTC) SusanG Toast
Wow, good for him. Is this actually true?
A front-page article in last Sunday's Daily Item reported that "only 28% of 926 [high school biology] teachers surveyed nationwide said they include evidence of evolution in classroom lesson plans."
If so then that's pretty sickening. Only 28% of high school biology teachers teach their students evolution? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 15:42, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Oh c'mon crundy, that statistic is terribly ambiguous without clarification of what the survey actually asked. Biology classes can cover a lot of things, without referring to evolution all the time. Also, the statistic says "evidence of evolution" not "evolutionary theory" - so it's entirely possible the teachers are just crap at teaching and not ideologically opposed to evolution. 212.62.5.158 (talk) 15:57, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Fair do's. Some Schlafly statistics probably? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 16:02, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Its well known that evolution gets glossed over and isnt taught properly. That could mean anything but its most likely meaning "28% teach it PROPERLY" as oppposed to going "meh, there were retarded monkey fish who gave birth to other retarded monkey fish and then you happened." Pegasus (talk) 17:01, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Insurance jargon[edit]

Can't remember if I mentioned this before, but the wife was smashed off the motorway last year by a twat in the fast land who doesn't know how to check his blind spot or use his indicators, and then tried to claim that she drove into him. I've finally got a letter from my insurance company saying "A full recovery of our outlay has been made and we are now closing our file". I presume this translates as "we have found in your favour, the other driver was 100% at fault, and this won't affect your no claims"? I hope so, because I'd be pissed off if that twat got away with almost killing my wife. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 16:25, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Sadly, all it means is that they've probably managed to recover the excess from his insurer. A 'no claim' bonus isn't a 'no blame' bonus, so even if you aren't at fault, you can still expect a hike in your premium, because you dared to claim in the first place. --Ψ GremlinTala! 17:13, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Is insurance even worth it? The excesses are huge, they'll give you any excuse not to claim, and everything is split up into individual items so even if you need ten grands worth of stuff, you still end up paying 80% of it because it's split over 100 different items. Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:38, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Vehicle insurance is compulsory most everywhere, so the "is it worth it?" question is kindof moot. WeaseloidWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:19, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Except that the compulsory insurance is usually for damage/injury to others not for you or your own car. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 22:42, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Precisely, it's "third party" as the minimum. This makes sense, really, but the excesses and premiums you have to pay to cover your own stuff are often extortionate. Scarlet A.pngpostate 23:20, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I pay ~$100 for "full coverage" and I always worry that if I have to make a claim, I'll be SOL. I know a few people who have been fighting their insurance companies for some time to get the surgery, or whatever, done. One of my friend's mom has been fighting her insurance company for a back surgery since the early 80's, and one of my friends now has been fighting for about 3 years for the same. Insurance sucks. It's compulsory where I live, but I do pay extra for the comfort that I may actually get covered. Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 23:45, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Good climate change site[edit]

Anyone know a good link to send some casual climate change denialists to? Somewhere credible without too much scientific jargon, but not governmental (because they're in on it, remember?) and not hippy (like Greenpeace). CrundyTalk nerdy to me 13:13, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

If they're denialists do you think they're going to take notice of anything which contradicts their view? That's why they are denialists rather than skeptics. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 13:15, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Just got this reply:
Please show me PROOF or FACT of climate change, so far we only really have evidence from goverment backed/funded organisations, or groups who benefit from such changes being true.

Climate change is happening, but man made climate change is a load of tosh, we have had climate change for millions and millions of years, thus the ice age etc, its the way the earth roles and to think us humans will make any difference is just laughable!

Show me fact or proof and I may be swayed, but in the mean time, for every piece of evidence there is double, sometimes triple to count against it!
I guess I'll just pen words to the effect of your message. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 13:24, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
http://www.skepticalscience.com/ Given their answer though, I don't think it will make a difference. It's just like the Apollo hoax theorists - "Show me evidence that doesn't come from NASA or someone connected to them..." --ZooGuard (talk) 14:00, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
There's one who's completely raping the use of apostophies. Makes my head hurt reading their posts, e.g.
No offense,but i have read load's on this subject,including your link,and still believe it is Weather.

I have also read the oppsite,which Scientist's won't take into account. Thing's like Sun Tan Lotion causing Coral Bleaching. A small Island,where the native people have coral bleaching every year,and have said how quickly,strongly and also coral's look better afterward's. A top scientist telling the global scientist's they need to look at ancient pollen,before they can say about global warming happening,but they don't. Everything the scientist saw in the pollen,and other's agree,is that when it warm's up,you will have more tree's,which will benefit the planet. Some plant species will die out,but Nature take's over and put's other's in their place,it's been happening for million's of year's,everything adapt's,and survive's.

All these fact's,and more,are ignored by them.
CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:01, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Is there a point in having a discussion with such people? --ZooGuard (talk) 14:14, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
(EC)Not really. One of them is getting really angry as well:
I will say it again, the only EVIDENCE we have (not facts!) has come from people who are directly funded by the government or who have something to gain. Look at 99% of independent researchers and you will find most are unable to find any 'hard' evidence to support man made global warming.

I have no issue with driving efficient cars, recycling etc and at no point has this ever come up in the conversation on here ... I'm simply stating that I disagree with the way in which the government can force so called 'fact' upon us when in fact there is very little evidence, and most of the strongest evidence in the past few years has been disapproved with scientists constantly backtracking, sidestepping and changing their minds!

There is not one scrap of solid evidence or fact supporting claims that mankind is causing considerable climate change, the earth is constantly going through climate change, its the way the earth evolves and moves on, it was doing this well and truly before man existed (possible reason dinosaurs are extinct?) All I can say is because I don't believe in man made climate change, doesn't mean I go around leaving lights on, running big juicy cars for no reason and refusing to recycle! please do not stereotype or label me in such a way when you clearly do not know me.

Considering you have yet to provide ANYTHING which is FACT or HARD EVIDENCE then your right, you wont convince me. I have a brain, I have opinions, I have the internet and I have a lot of research ... all of which points to this being a money making scheme to hit us with yet more taxes.
CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:20, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Climate is such a chaotic system that it is difficult to pull out statistics/facts which can irrefutably prove AGW one way or another. At some stage in our recent history it has been warmer/colder/wetter/drier, sea-levels have been up and down like a whore's drawers, carbon dioxide levels have been lower and higher. We know that solar cycles and volcanic activity can have significant effects but can only infer what the long solar cycles are by looking glacial records as our own measurements cover at most a few centuries not hundreds of millennia. The only thing that we can really say is that the current increase in CO2 is faster than anything we have found in the records of trapped atmosphere extracted from ice sheets which implies that current increase is at least being exacerbated by human activity. My personal opinion is that we are merely stewards of the planet and as good citizens it behoves us to clean up after ourselves after we've had a party rather than leaving the shit for our grandchildren to cope with. "Sod the future" is not a particularly pleasant attitude to adopt. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 14:19, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Oh yes, and the more trees argument would only apply if we didn't keep cutting down the ones that we already have. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 14:22, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Does it really matter how it's caused? There can surel be no doubt that it's happening and we should do all we can to slow it down. 14:30, 7 February 2011 (UTC) SusanG Toast
Apparently it does matter, because it's all a big conspiracy by the government to make more money and tax us and rape our pets. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:32, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Yes it does matter. If the world is warming because of us then we should do something about it. If it's warming despite us, then we probably can't do anything. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 16:12, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

How To Talk to a Global Warming Skeptic is the definitive guide to all the basic denier talking points. That blog (Few Things Ill Considered) and Deltoid on Scienceblogs cover AGW heavily. There's also Real Climate run by actual climatologists, but Michael Mann edits on the site and we know he's in on the CommuScientist conspiracy. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 15:53, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Never mind, anyone who thinks this is a "moneymaking scheme to hit us with more taxes" is probably not going buy any of this. Yeah, I remember the last time governments across the world cooked up decades of bogus scientific research to justify a few new taxes. I'm onto their lies. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 16:01, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Some good sites are here (on the evidence) and here (on responses to denialists). sterile stripagram 16:24, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

They all seem to have given up. It's hard on the brain to argue a stupid point when some pesky person keeps providing you with the evidence that doesn't exist. Not that it'll change their minds though. They'll carry on shouting about how global warming is a cycle and pollen somehow proves global warming false and how it's a tax cheat etc etc. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 16:28, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Someone's just cited climatechangefacts.info as proof against climate change. Anyone know of this site? All I can see is that it's a thinly veiled attempt to come across as impartial, while presenting debunked claims, making unreferenced counter-claims to IPCC studies, and lots of links to the discredited work of Dr Nils-Axel Mörner. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 17:53, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
As far as I'm concerned, if they can't (without using Google or Wikipedia or any other help) tell me basic facts about climateology such as the radiative forcing effects of sulphur dioxide, the heat distribution by the gulf stream and the effect of continental drift on climate (yes, there is one) then they aren't informed enough to have an opinion. I spent 20% of my degree on the natural environment and I've barely scratched the surface of factors you need to think about to discuss climate. You just cannot teach this stuff in the soundbite form that denialists want. Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:58, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
My god that site is shit! First they talk about how elevated CO2 levels will affect the ocean's pH and cause problems, then they have a whole section about why elevated CO2 won't cause any problems, and then at the bottom they link to an article which says that elevated CO2 levels will kill off all the coral reefs! This is making my head hurt. I think that site deserves an article. Oh and P.S. they're still banging on about ClimateGate and how they used "tricks" Facepalm.png CrundyTalk nerdy to me 18:18, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I think though that climate is a bit of a tough one for skeptics. We're good at ghosts, spirits and woo in general because the field is really open to us. We can refer to the scientific method and use it but science itself simply ignores this stuff as non material.
But real science is sort of different. We are really in the position of saying "This is the scientific consensus - if the scientific consensus is wrong then show us were. The burden of proof is on you mate."
Take atoms. The only reason I know they exist is because scientists tell me they exist. If somebody tells me that atoms are a scientific conspiracy then there is no way that I can - simply by using logic - show them that they are wrong. In theory I could to university and become a nuclear physicist and (presumably) prove to my satisfaction that they exist - but even this wouldn't convince my hypothetical opponent. If the scientific consensus isn't good enough for him then my becoming a scientist will do nothing to improve my argument.
The same goes for climate change. The point where those who proposed the existence of anthropogenic had to prove their case has passed. The ball is now in the court of those who would reject the consensus. So really there is not a lot you can, or need, to say to such people.--BobSpring is sprung! 18:35, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Don't get me started on atoms, so many people think "oh, but we can't see them with our own eyes, just through instruments so you can't really prove they exist!" ... oh shut the fuck up!! But yes, you're right that it's difficult for skeptics and rationalists or even qualified scientists to deal with. Scarlet A.pngpostate 23:23, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Having personally seen atoms, and the crystalline structure of rock, I can say atoms exist. But it was through some magical, multi-million dollar microscope, so I suppose that means it's all BS. And having taken those classes, we also talked about the automatic systems built into the earth that do handle an immense amount of the CO2. But thought this, the answer is not "See, the earth takes care of itself!" it's, "See, the earth is good at taking care of the CO2 it produces through volcanism and such. Us adding to it is what's pushing it over the edge." And, I forget off the top of my head with one, but wasn't one of the large extinction events caused by excess CO2, poisoning the air, the sea, and just generally making the earth a shitty place to live, with the run away green house effect? (Wow, I forgot that started as a question) Quarumicrocosm - You can't explain that! 23:39, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

I think that I may not have made my point clearly first time round so I'll give it another shot.

There is (or there should be) a fundamental difference between the ways we deal with accepted science and pseudoscience.

In scientific issues where a scientific consensus exists the case has been proved. It is no longer down to us to provide evidence or "proof". The onus has shifted to those who would deny global warming, atoms, or relativity. It is for those who deny reality to provide evidence against whatever they want to deny and (and that "and" is most important) provide alternative more convincing explanations.

With pseudoscience the situation is different. Woo pushers need to provide evidence for souls, ear candling or (that all-time favorite) homeopathy. And that evidence needs to be very good.

Now, we could be accused of taking the easy way out here - because in the case of both the deniers and the woo pushers the burden of proof is on them not us. But such is life.--BobSpring is sprung! 10:14, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

On the contrary, it isn't an easy way out. Initially the burden of proof is on the scientists to prove the claim(s). For example, when someone first said that our global CO2 production will cause problems in the future, the burden was on the scientists. They then provided the evidence required, and it is now up to the climate change skeptics to debunk this evidence or provide their own. They cannot. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 11:53, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
I agree absolutely - the only point I'm making is that in both cases we shift the burden of proof onto the other party.--BobSpring is sprung! 12:16, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
In science, the word proof should be used very carefully and probably not at all in the case of climate science. Even when denialists are screaming "where's the proof?", always try to bring the conversation back to evidence. You will never be able to provide them with proof. But you might be able to change the emphasis to the evidence and what trained scientists conclude based on that evidence. They might still shout "government conspiracy, control, funding!", but that's another argument. Ajkgordon (talk) 12:48, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Yes, that's why I put "proof" in quotation marks.--BobSpring is sprung! 12:52, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
True. I guess the only "proof" that would satisfy them is a time machine. Even then if you took them 500 years into the future and showed them the lifeless, flooding, barren wasteland the earth has become they'd still be yelling about how it was a natural process. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 12:53, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
You're dealing with a considerable amount of confirmation bias too. That's probably your biggest hurdle. You can give all the evidence, you can explain it perfectly, you can even convince them momentarily but a single report in the other direction - no matter how flawed or small - would change all that in an instant. Scarlet A.pngpostate 13:14, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Huffington Post changes hands[edit]

Woomeister rag The Huffington Post has been sold to AOL. Wonder if AOL will finally clean up the paper or make it worse? GooRoo (talk) 04:49, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Expect 9000% more coverage of the Kaspergian sisters64.229.250.240 (talk) 12:26, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Kaspergian? My guess is you might mean Kardashian. - π 14:13, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
No, the Kaspergians are the ghosts of the Kardashians. Doctor Dark (talk) 16:27, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
If the AOL suits are smart, they will realize that telling the suckers what they want to hear is a good way to keep up the revenue stream. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:57, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

Sigh[edit]

It's at times like this I miss being able to whack my todger staff thrice upon the ground and summon forth the Cabal, to gather in the secret chamber beneath Hollyhock Mountain. Or something. Because there is no cabal. Bugger. --Ψ Gremlin話しなさい 13:08, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Ah, the secret handshake. Got ya. Not like there is a Cabal to shake hands with. Scarlet A.pngpostate 13:16, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Did our secret meeting cave collapse and nobody notice? I keep getting errors trying to find it. Not that there was ever a cave there. I am just saying if there was a cave we should have done more maintenance to it. - π 13:16, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
It probably got vaped in the server move.  Lily Inspirate me. 14:20, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Join the secret RW Skype club instead. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:53, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
We haz the irc channel on feenode, #rationalwiki. Cracker via android.
I had forgotten about that. I'm on now.--BobSpring is sprung! 21:08, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

And now for something completely different the same[edit]

A goat riding a donkey. –SuspectedReplicant retire me 15:06, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Been here a while
Goatuberalles.jpg
Тиранесkill philosopher, curate atheist? 15:09, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
So what's with this new liquid threads thing? Occasionaluse (talk) 15:14, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, but this is a different goat, and it's a video! –SuspectedReplicant retire me 15:18, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Donkey? That's an atheist pony. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 19:46, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

This is proof positive that humanity is doomed[edit]

FarmVille for Dummies.

I give up. All civilization will collapse due to stupidity within a year from now. The only hope for us intelligent people (and I define "intelligent" as going beyond "realizing FarmVille is just an effort in repeated clicking") is to build a starship and leave Earth for a new planet. MDB (talk) 16:30, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

Which planet? Тиранесvomit cardboard box, shake leak? 16:39, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
The moon. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 16:41, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Not a planet. Тиранесburst Geiger counter, mollify neverland? 16:48, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
What? Oh. Hum. Let's see... Alpha Centauri. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 17:03, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
That's a pair of stars. Тиранесsink hero, absolve rickroll? 17:09, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Hale-Bopp? Iridium? USS Enterprise? --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 17:24, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Comet. Element. Aircraft Carrier. Тиранесmurder t-shirt, oscillate orc? 17:26, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
You're just close-minded. Besides, Iridium is also a satellite constellation. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 17:33, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

I have to take my hat off to anyone who can sell that sort of thing. I mean there's a free help file right?? Pegasus (talk) 16:50, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

I'm still waiting for Pooping for dummies. The full-color how-to guide --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 17:04, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
One day, someone will write Breathing For Dummies. It will be a parody. This fact will allude the 50,000 people who buy it, thinking that they've been doing it wrong. 江斯顿What is it now? 17:33, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Allude? --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 17:40, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Protrude? WėąṣėḷőįďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:38, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
The fact will protrude 50,000 people? If you say so... --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 20:05, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
More like 60,000. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 20:07, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
That's allot of people. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 20:12, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Like this alot? Seme Blue 20:41, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
... Uke Blue 20:41, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
A grammar troll. I actually find that somewhat original (maybe I haven't been around enough). ThunderkatzHo! 20:43, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Technically more of a vocabulary troll. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 21:02, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Your good at this :) ThunderkatzHo! 21:08, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I see what you did their. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 21:12, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Well, according to some, there is an actual technique to it that most people don't use. It involves squatting or hitching your legs up to reshape your colon... Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:36, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
So that's how you play FarmVille. I always wondered. ЩєазєюіδWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:43, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, what a shit game. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 19:58, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

On "...For Dummies" in general[edit]

Some of the ... for Dummies books aren't bad. For instance, there's one called something like Tolkien's Middle Earth for Dummies, which is basically Tolkien's Middle Earth for People Who've Read The Hobbit and LotR but Can't Get Through The Silmarillion and Later Books. It's actually pretty well done.

Some of the technical books make me want to shout, though. I thumbed through C Programming for Dummies once, and noticed it's "coverage" of pointers was to say "oh, they're complicated, but you can do plenty in C without them." Uuummm... no. Pointers are key to do anything beyond the most elementary C programming. If the book had said, "Pointers are very important, but they're also very difficult to work with and beyond the scope of this book", that would be fine, but they lied to the reader. And while I've never looked at the book, I read a review of Perl for Dummies that made it sound equally flawed. MDB (talk) 17:44, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

My C++ teacher said to use textbooks instead of For Dummies books for programming. O'Reilly is a pretty good brand (it's where the trend of associating camels with Perl came from), so try that. (And fortunately it has nothing to do with Bill O'Reilly.) --GastonRabbit (talk) 18:58, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

FUCK YOU, WORLD[edit]

I live in a town of over 100,000 people with a fucking major research university in the middle of it and there are no, I repeat no fucking payphones anywhere in a six-block radius of the campus!?!?!?! Seriously?!!?! What fuck? I make, like, 5 phone calls a year, if that. My home phone gets dusty, I use it so little, and it makes no sense for me to have a cell phone, not only for economic reasons, but because I don't really want to talk to you, and i certainly don't want you to be able to call me when I'm out doing my thing. I just want to put a quarter in a slot and make a call here. When did the world decide that that was a completely unreasonable desire? P-Foster (talk) 17:42, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

What's the problem? Just buy yourself a payphone. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 17:46, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Pre-paid mobile is probably your best bet. Indeed, the fact that the deals are quite good (if you use them rarely) means it's just not profitable enough to bother with payphones anywhere. Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:48, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Best deal i've seen for pre-paid is 100 bucks for a thousand minutes, of which I'll probably take 900 to my grave. Plus you gotta buy the phone. Make no sense to spend that much money. Plus, I don't want a cellphone. Straight up. I have enough "things" in my life, if not too many. P-Foster (talk) 17:54, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Whaaa....? I have a 30€ phone and a prepaid sim-card which I recharge with 10€ maybe twice a year (I think the price for calls is something like 0,15€/min)... Where on earth do you live? --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 18:00, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Sim cards you can get practically for free, phones you can grab second hand practically for free (I've never bought one) and if you use the occasional call you just load $10/£10 onto it and top up every seven billion months when you need to. Comapred to hunting for payphones and being extortionately charged per minute they're alarmingly good deals. Scarlet A.pngpostate 18:02, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
On the subject of phones. Oh how profoundly unfortunate!! (I dislike swearing.) I've just dropped my HTC smartphone and it's doing strange things. It's most vexing.--BobSpring is sprung! 19:00, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Sell it on Ebay and get yourself a Legend instead. With their aluminium case they are pretty robust. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 19:54, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
No doubt good advice. But the phone I dropped is (or rather was) a legend.--BobSpring is sprung! 20:06, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Then you're more efficient than me at smashing phones. Congratulations, I guess. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 20:14, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
It's a real pain because I used it for everything. It got me up in the morning, showed me my schedule, gave me pound euro conversion rates, kept me up to date on my bank balance, worked as a turn-by-turn navigator, did cool translation things, read my emails and my gmails, got my podcasts automatically, gave me news, worked as a wifi hotspot, connected me to wikis and more. I could even use it to make phone calls at a pinch. And my most important client went bankrupt today - though I suppose he's got bigger problems than a broken phone. --BobSpring is sprung! 21:41, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I needed a new phone so I got the very cheapest I could. £10 clear on Voodoophone, drop in my Voodoophone SIM and everything's luvverly. It actually came with £10 credit so I gave the included SIM to a teenager. The main trouble with prepay is that unused accounts often expire after a few months - David Gerard (talk) 19:08, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I went out of my too look for a cheap touch-screen, PAYG mobile and picked up one for £25 and that came with a 2GB memory card. You might not want a cell phone but frankly you're a lot better off picking up a cheap one and not giving out the number than paying a lot more for a payphone.--Stunteddwarf Spirit of the Cherry Blossom 19:42, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I avoid using a telephone at all costs. Ace McAwesome 19:50, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
I guess that depending on the distance, shouting very loud works just as well. And it's mostly free. --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 19:56, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
The other great upshot of really cheap phones is that you can brag about how it can do something the iPhone can't. So your trendy iPhone user says "no it can't!" and you bait them in, eventually getting them to show the iPhone doing exactly what your cheap phone can do. So when they agree to that, you simply throw your cheap phone up in the air and drop kick it across the bar. "Now, is there an app for that, bitch?" Scarlet A.pngpostate 20:14, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Bob, is that how.... ?? --Idiot numbre 188 (talk) 20:26, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
No it's what happens when you come home in the dark, feed the dog while trying to ensure that it doesn't take objection to the new cat whilst it's eating, which you take wriggling to your desk as the same time as you are trying to empty things from your pockets while the cat is getting increasingly wriggly and things are dropping on the floor and the cat is moving and you're tying to hold everything at once and the landline phone is ringing at the same time. Is there an app for this?--BobSpring is sprung! 21:46, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

I don't want a cel phone, no matter how cheap I can get one. spending any amount of money, even $1, on a commodity that i have zero desire to own, makes no sense. I want to have payphones in every bar and restaurant, and on every street corner, like it always was. And get off my lawn, you damn kids. P-Foster (talk) 22:13, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

in my area of the US you only find payphones at some gas stations, on a pole outside for use while you sit in your car. 67.72.98.45 (talk) 22:52, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

I'm afraid the lack of profitability for payphones compared to cheap mobiles will be working against you there. Scarlet A.pngpostate 23:19, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

I'm not 100% sure on the costs associated with it but consider looking into making any necessary calls through Skype. DanH (talk) 01:41, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
So P-Foster refuses to pay for something to own which could be cheap and even be part of a reusing cycle but instead expects a service to be provided universally on the off-chance that he might like to make a call at some unspecified indeterminate place and time and probably expects to to pay no more than a quarter. Take some responsibility for your self. Redchuck.gif Генгисevolving 09:00, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
I'd like to add that I think pre-paid phones are a whole lot less viable in the US than it is in Europe, because telecommunication companies are pretty much screwing the US consumers. Point out if I'm wrong on anything, I've only lived in Wisconsin for half a year so maybe the stuff I saw only apply to that state.
Anyways, since I was only there for half a year I tried getting a pre-paid cellphone so I could be reachable by American friends if needed. So I bought a simple prepaid phone, and the first thing I found out was that I could not use its SIM card in my own cellphone or vica versa. Next, I found out that you have to pay for incoming calls. This seemed to be pretty much accepted by the US consumer, which I find amazing since they're pretty much paying double. Regardless of this, it seemed to me that Americans are getting screwed with the cellphone plan's prices anyways. Maybe I just wasn't seeing the deals, but the cheapest plans I saw were something like $40 per month. Over here, I can pay €4/month for 75 minutes a month, or €6 if I need 300 minutes. Obviously there are a lot more expensive plans too, but the option for a cheapass one seemed to be missing in the US. Finally, your prepaid minutes expire, and rather quickly. After this your cellphone becomes useless.
So yeh, buying a simple cheapass prepaid just for emergencies does not seem very viable in the US, they pretty much force you to get one of their rape plans. </rant> GTac (talk) 10:41, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
I have a Virgin mobile phone which I use for emergencies. It has no monthly fee and I pay by direct debit from my bank account. I hardly make any calls but can use it overseas if necessary. In the UK it doesn't cost me to receive calls or texts. They often try to get me to upgrade but when my bills are only of the order of £1-£2 a month I'm not inclined to make any changes.  Lily Inspirate me. 13:19, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
Let's be fair. Imagine what it would cost the cellphone providers if they had to eat the costs of all the unsolicited calls and texts you get immediately after getting (certain) cellphones. Rumor has it that they are suing someone for this? Are spammers dialing numbers at random or...? Unicow (talk) 23:42, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
+1 for SkypeOut. Just throw $5 into your account and it should last you ages. Assuming you have a mic and speakers of course. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:55, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

Support PalMD![edit]

PalMD's blog, White Coat Underground, has been nominated for medGadget's Medical Weblog of 2010. You should go vote for him.

Pal is always worth voting for. He writes with an eye towards humanizing both the doctor and patient, often eloquently and always insightfully. So stop by and show him your support. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 20:57, 7 February 2011 (UTC)

That would be "White coat underground".--BobSpring is sprung! 21:51, 7 February 2011 (UTC)
Who's PalMD? 02:30, 8 February 2011 (UTC) C®ackeЯ
Only 39 votes but I bookmarked! Alain (talk) 04:42, 8 February 2011 (UTC)
I voted, but even with the RW massiv behind him I don't think he's going to win. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 23:32, 9 February 2011 (UTC)