RationalWiki talk:What is going on in the blogosphere?

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What is going on?

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Google would rather talk about this, not privacy[edit]

Court packing[edit]

That just reads like a petulant rant from someone who didn't get her way and now wants to throw her toys out of the pram. Throwing away all policy and procedure out of hatred for Darth Cheeto can only backfire in the end, and it's especially easy this time to see how that'll almost inevitably go horribly wrong. Maybe an introductory civics course would help too. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:06, 14 October 2018 (UTC)

Considering the Republicans have thrown away all prodecure and policy for sake of power, it's pretty much suicidal to want to allow a far-right majority in SCOTUS which has the power to overturn the decisions of actually elected institutions (although thanks to the EC and voter supression, the legitimacy of the US is questionable). Let's not forget that the GOP now has the majority in the Court neeeded to not only overturn Roe but also Lawrence v Texas, Brown v Board of Education, Engel v Vitale and other landmark decisions. Preventing the complete reversal of a 100 years of activism and agonizingly slow reforms is a top priority. Because if that happens, it will prove that reformist reforms don't work and that will open a can of worms that everyone will regret opening. Tuxer (talk) 08:23, 14 October 2018 (UTC)
Stare decisis is actually a thing, so I'm not convinced that they're going to go on a huge rampage reversing cases. And here's a thought; if you (generic you) don't like the way Republicans are handling things... run and elect better candidates to oppose them! The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 21:03, 14 October 2018 (UTC)
Stare Decisis is nothing more than legal fiction, the SCOTUS has flip-floped on various issues across its history. And voting? Like voting for Joe Manching, who used his power to allow Brett Kavanaugh, a petulant manchild and probable rapist, to get a lifetime appoint to the highest court. The liberal cult-like worship of the ballot box is as annoying and stupid as the conservative cult-like worship of Ronald Reagan. Tuxer (talk) 19:03, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
Definitely inclined to agree with you here. It's a nominal concept that should be respected, but civility and institutions are not actually a thing these right-wing psychopaths care about, they're just a shield they expect their opponents to hold up to. The decisions will not stand. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:26, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
That's nice in theory, but no matter how much you chastise democrats to not sink to the republicans' level, they're gonna keep singing like a wad of neutronium dropped overboard: filibuster a year, then take power and ban the filibuster, voter ID laws, historically unprecedented gerrymandering, they're already court-packing my state's supreme court. These are people who will steal every democratic check on their power you can invent, and the urge to do things like court packing to stop them comes from a real place of needing to protect ourselves from them. The right is not some abstract threat of not taking civics in high school. It's a group of very real people who are actively dismantling democracy and human rights for an image of humanity that isn't human.
Maybe you're so lucky as to not be a person whose life and rights are threatened by them, but "being civil" is only a priority to people whose only concerns are abstractions. Shit like this is exactly why I've been unable to respect calls for civility here, there's too much abuse of the concept in defense of the indefensible. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:18, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
So your solution to the deconstruction of the democratic republic and its institutions is to...deconstruct the democratic republic and its institutions.
You do realize it's shit like this that allows Republicans in power after Democrats to further their agendas, right? See Obama's expansion of executive power for a good example. RoninMacbeth (talk) 19:39, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
Oh no, you misunderstand me. I think the "other side" already doesn't care, there's nothing to protect. Building walls around the territory the enemy has invaded and taken from you is really dumb. Especially when they've shown they don't care about walls, only you do. I don't think there's an institutional solution to the fact that republicans have become openly fascist though, it's going to end in a lot of death sometime. Maybe not this decade, but soon. Institutions don't stop the march of fascism. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 19:53, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
It probably doesn't matter either way. In the end blood will be shed for a mixture of truth and lies, suffering will accure, both sides will meet somewhere in the middle, and the whole thing will begin again somewhere further down the line. We're past the point where no one suffers, past the point where there are easy answers. The trolley will hit someone, the only question is who, and what comes after the impact, and if history has taught me anything it is that death comes next, again and again and again, in a never ending cycle. The only choice we can make is which one lets us sleep at night. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 20:16, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
I really do want the easy out; I don't like the conflict I see as inevitable. I think my "side" is likely to lose. It's just that "protecting and defending our checks and balances and institutions to keep civil society together" has already lost my faith. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 20:32, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
Besides, the article says that attempts at court packing has been done before, and apocalyptic predictions turn out to be hysteria. If the past attempts at court packing didn't result in utter chaos, would this one be so? --It's-a me, LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 23:22, 15 October 2018 (UTC)
Would probably be better to just impeach the remaining members of the Citizens United Five as accessories to corruption or something. Even if the impeachment fails, if it gets as far as a Senate trial the justices will get the message, like they did when court packing was first suggested. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 03:04, 16 October 2018 (UTC)
And immediately afterwards, getting a constitutional amendment to prevent a reoccurrence would be ideal. That and running an actually decent presidential candidate, plus if Trump is still holding on the Republicans (I'll certainly do my part in my state's primary!) could come up with someone to unseat this buffoon. It's not about civility, it's about doing it in such a way that you don't end up hoist on your own petard. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 04:12, 16 October 2018 (UTC)
Here's my problem with that very sensible course of action, constitutional amendments that clarify the relationship of obscene amounts of money and our ideals of individual freedom cannot be made in any remotely sane form without the death of at least 20 million people who've fallen for the "free market is freedom" charade. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 15:48, 16 October 2018 (UTC)
I hope it doesn't come to that, of course. Perhaps reading Steven Pinker gives me a bit more hope, though the pessimism sure isn't without cause. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 21:32, 16 October 2018 (UTC)
Pinker is nutso. Not because of the "Let's take aggregate statistics about wealth and pretend they're representative of widespread success" thing that has, if anything, helped make things worse. But because of the whole "writing glowing reviews of openly racist books" thing. He's a right wing prop now. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 17:29, 29 October 2018 (UTC)
That... is not exactly the impression I came away with (though I know the alt-right engaged in some deceptive video editing to "prove" things about him). But he's clearly not infallible either. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 22:33, 3 November 2018 (UTC)


Bahaha bahahaa haha[edit]

Poor Yolo Minneapolis Milo Yiannopoulos 'more than $2m in debt', Australian promoters' documents show

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2018/dec/03/milo-yiannopoulos-more-than-2m-in-debt-australian-promoters-documents-show Cardinal Chang (talk) 15:10, 3 December 2018 (UTC)

And it gets fucking better, Milo Yiannopoulos banned from crowdfunding site Patreon

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/dec/06/milo-yiannopoulos-banned-from-crowdfunding-site-patreon

Can someone add this to the right news section. Cardinal Chang (talk) 21:55, 6 December 2018 (UTC)

Douthat[edit]

@RoninMacbeth Did you mean to post that in CLOGS? 𝔊𝔬𝔞𝔱-𝔈𝔪𝔭𝔢𝔯𝔬𝔯 𝔅𝔦𝔤𝔰 (𝔴𝔬𝔯𝔡𝔰 𝔬𝔣 𝔴𝔦𝔰𝔡𝔬𝔪/𝔞𝔠𝔥𝔦𝔢𝔳𝔢𝔪𝔢𝔫𝔱𝔰) 03:26, 6 December 2018 (UTC)

I wondered about that, and figured it might be better received there. That said, I am at least in partial agreement with the piece; the old WASP aristocracy, whatever their flaws, was at least better for the country than rule by high-strung Internet billionaires and investment bank backstabbers, for reasons I explained with rather similar reasoning:
The great paleo-liberal dream of "meritocracy", where rank and status are the result of a game played fair, is inherently sexist....

This is one of the reasons why I find the idea of hereditary aristocracy attractive, and think that having such a thing as an ingredient of a political system is not obviously beneath consideration. It isn't about restoring some kind of natural order in which lords rule over serfs. It's about placing obstacles in the way of ambition and social climbing. It's about achieving a steady state societyWikipedia's W.svg.

The aristocratic belief of landed gentry and hidalgos that mere servile trade was something beneath them is an anti-commercial value system that has been shown to be relatively sustainable over time. It will, of course, be accompanied by a generous dose of hypocrisy, just like any other human value system.

Even powerful people are unfree to the extent that markets run their lives. The chief executive officer of General Motors is an ironmonger. She must cultivate the public's favor to get them to buy her wares. To that extent, she is not her own person. To the extent that she buys and sells things -- that she participates in a marketplace -- she is unfree. Look at the scandals that have overtaken Uber and similar startups. Travis Kalanick was apparently not mighty enough to tell the world to go blow its nose. Consider the words of a true aristocrat among men, St. Ignatius: "Employers sense in me a denial of their values … they fear me. I suspect that they can see that I am forced to function in a century which I loathe.”

I want this aristocracy to exist without either imagining that I would be a part of it, or would want to. This is the usual ad hominem directed at anyone who suggests the desirability of an aristocratic polity. William F. Buckley famously remarked that "I should sooner live in a society governed by the first two thousand names in the Boston telephone directory than in a society governed by the two thousand faculty members of Harvard University." I disagree: I want to be governed by extraordinary rather than ordinary people, though I admit that I am not one of them. There are certain values and outlooks that improve a ruling class even if they'll never be common in the general population.

We may not want to enlist the Harvard faculty, but we can enlist people who are much likelier to have fancy liberal educations: people who didn't go to college to learn to program computers or sell insurance, but people who went to college for the real reasons colleges exist. It would help if our aristocrats got around, learned foreign languages, and saw the world. It would also help if they had ties to similarly constituted aristocrats in other countries. They should cultivate a certain aimlessness; they should take advantage of their privileges to improvise their lives. Finally, it would help if they knew how to temper self-indulgence and sensuality with good taste. Our rulers ought to be jaded enough to mock moral panics, or (since that demands too much of human weakness) at least the ones that don't involve them directly. Money is like whisky; generally speaking, the older the better. This is one reason I favor a place for aristocracy without fancying myself one.

I'm not looking for Nietzschean supermen. Strict aristocracies don't produce them, anyways; what they do produce is Charles II of Spain. I want the schlecht rather than the böse, the "bad" rather than the "evil". The böse are what we have now, the ambitious little devils polishing their résumés, keeping their noses clean, seeking their tickets to higher elected rank, backstabbing their colleagues in the process. These people are devils in human form, born to sow seeds of mischief. Left unchecked, they will quicken the pace and increase efficiency, to the direct harm of their slower neighbors with other priorities, and thus violating the Golden Rule. Would it really be so bad if the people who governed us spent most of their time catting around, dueling each other, and smoking opium? It would be as entertaining to watch them as it would be hellish to be one. Not terribly different from being a Disney starlet, as it seems to work out.

At minimum, it would put a damper on people going into politics to bother their neighbors; people who go into politics to bother their neighbors often succeed. I think they'd do less damage that way. Room for the effete, for the people who'd never make it on their own, is what I'm aiming for.
I at least am happy to vote it up. Douthat is occasionally capable of insight. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱs. 03:44, 6 December 2018 (UTC)
(EC) Yeah, sorry, meant to put it in Clogs. I posted it before history class, so I wasn't paying particularly close attention. RoninMacbeth (talk) 03:47, 6 December 2018 (UTC)
But I can see it being in Blogs, so I guess we can keep it. RoninMacbeth (talk) 03:51, 6 December 2018 (UTC)

rape jokes are the problem[edit]

not "narcing" someone for making them. using freedom of speech as an excuse to be an asshole is saying "the most redeemable thing I can say about my opinions is that it's not technically illegal to say it".24.120.253.250 (talk) 22:09, 24 December 2018 (UTC)

Also, that guy isn't a nobody, he is a celebrity, who lives off his opinion being sold to lots of people. The fact that he has to watch what he posts even on his private profiles is part of the cost of being famous. If that story was about a random truck driver that got fired after a misplaced joke on his 70 friends Facebook account, then I'd agree it has gone too far.152.250.151.20 (talk) 19:07, 25 December 2018 (UTC)
Yeah, he should be well aware that being edgy comes with a price especially in public. He is a public figure now. --It's-a me, LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 20:15, 25 December 2018 (UTC)

Do we really need to reproduce clickbaity headlines here?[edit]

The article bigs posted, "Who's more compassionate, democrats or republicans?" Is a hell of a clickbait headline, that refuses to actually answer the question it presents in the body, though it takes a stab at it at the end, alleging that trump supporters aren't.

In addition to my dislike of us using clickbait headlines, I have other problems with the article in question. She links to "my research", in the summary, but her CV actually only has one paper published in a political science journal, and then she's only the second author. And that paper barely touches on compassion at all. It's measured twice on really quite old data that reflects a modern electorate in no way.

Her dissertation does a little better, but it also becomes clear, skimming it, that her MO is the equate anti-abortion rhetoric about "innocent babies" to compassion, which really really represents most of the extent of her data's backing the presence of compassion existing in republicans. To me, that's always been the thinnest veneer that immediately transitions to the far more conservative political debate of "defending" from "attackers".

Oh man, I don't even know what I'm complaining about. It's fine. There's not that much wrong, other than her hanging way too broad a conclusion on her dissertation. It's a blog post. By the original author. It's fine and I'm being a pedant. But the clickbait headline sucks, bigs. ikanreed 🐐Bleat at me 22:09, 10 January 2019 (UTC)

We need clickbaity headlines here now. Here's why[edit]

  1. 9 out of 10 clickbaity headlines are clicked annually by more people per year than 1000 kW.
  2. Clickbaity headlines are becoming surprisingly popular in China.
  3. The Silver Age of clickbait - what does it mean?
  4. What does this signature say about pictures of baby animals? 2.122.180.163 (talk) 23:22, 10 January 2019 (UTC)