RationalWiki talk:What is going on in the blogosphere?/Archive10

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Luke the terrorist[edit]

Nice playing around with words there, but in the end, just an exercise in trying to use emotions and words with emotional context (for example, linking the "bombing" of the death star with terrorist attacks or by calling "sheating your weapon and let yourself be killed" a "suicide attack") for manipulating people. The empire would love it.--Irian (talk) 09:26, 24 December 2015 (UTC)

I think the overarching idea has some merit; you know what they say about terrorists and freedom fighters. A few of the connections are valid when made with broad strokes, e.g. Luke's home and family being destroyed by an imperialist government causing him to partake in violent rebellion against said government. But you're right, the way this particular article is written makes it apparent the author is just trying to stir shit.166.137.244.59 (talk) 20:23, 28 December 2015 (UTC)

What went wrong?[edit]

So after reading that article about how Obama's spirituality led him to try to unite everyone across the US's political spectrum, which arguably made him more conservative, I have to wonder why everyone in the US seems to be so divided. There are more hate groups, less tolerance for minorities, more politically polarization, and more distrust of just about everything. So why did this happen under such a pragmatic presidency?--Owlman (talk) 04:23, 27 December 2015 (UTC)

Maybe people are just more aware of the hate groups and intolerance now. More media attention or social media perhaps.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 21:14, 27 December 2015 (UTC)
It's also hardly a US-specific development, as the same applies to most parts of Europe. Carpetsmoker (talk) 21:17, 27 December 2015 (UTC)
Well true, but the US tends to at least switch between a dominate left or dominate right where it seems like now both sides are at a sort of equal footing. I mean the Tea Party has taken over the Republicans and the left wing of the Democrats seems to feel the same disenfranchisement. Every Republican and Democrat (more so with the Republicans) I talked to, no matter what their political leaning or age, seems to believe both parties are the same and/or rotten. This anti-establishment feeling seems to cause more belief in the 'other' being dominated radicals (whether that is justified is another matter) and has led to more distrust and conspiracies theories.--Owlman (talk) 21:55, 27 December 2015 (UTC)
nothing went wrong, per say, except life happens. People expected too much too soon. AMassiveGay (talk) 18:44, 13 January 2016 (UTC)

Richer, whiter, more educated[edit]

I feel like in addition to Vaccine denial, this describes a lot of the groups that generate material for rationalwiki. I have this feeling that there's this sense of entitlement and authority that comes from a modest education, a lucrative career, and good old fashioned white privilege, that gives people a sense of moral or intellectual authority they don't really have. Fringe, viral, seductively simplistic ideas are very good at festering in these environments.

It takes a very careful, very self critical analysis to pause on ideas once you've accepted them. The notion that I have all these weaknesses myself terrifies me. How can I be sure I'm an adequately skeptical person who carefully considers his ideas, and is not just one of these people, blissfully unaware? Does anyone else wonder that after seeing all these fringe groups with insane ideas about how the world works? ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 15:34, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

The fact that they're educated and have stable income also make poorer and uninformed people, like those around me in the middle of a state which tried to set the value of Pi to 3.2, reason that these people know what they're talking about. I've seen it all the time, and it bothers me.
Even skepticism has its limits. If you're skeptical enough, you could reason that you can't even trust what you observe since it's just the electrical impulses in your head, but yeah, you aren't the only one that wonders about whether or not they're skeptical/rational/logical enough. jrussellwrites (talk) 23:25, 30 December 2015 (UTC)
The good news is, you're dealing with a shrinking demographic. Many young people of a healthy age for breeding lack sufficient confidence in the durability of any part of their lives to have the confidence to start a family. People with lucrative careers and modest educations are a dying breed. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 05:36, 4 January 2016 (UTC)
Idiocy comes no matter what your skin tone happens to be, as the melanin theory morons (several of whom I've had the misfortune to run into in my life, in New England it's apparently "progressive" to give losers who have a passionate love for the ravings of Louis Farrakhan a megaphone) so easily demonstrate. Getting back to the basics of neurology, and remembering that I as an individual am no more or less likely to fall victim to these ideas because my brain (with some exceptions) is made of the same flavorless material as everyone else's, helps me a lot. And as a side note, I know Don Henley helped turn the song "Don Henley Must Die" into "Michael Bolton Must Die" (a sentiment with which I entirely agree); I think a great new version would be "Jenny McCarthy Must Die". The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 04:34, 5 January 2016 (UTC)

Gamers[edit]

I agree pretty much with everything the author said, but I don't personally think letting a minority of zealots define the word "gamer" is the right response. Letting them do so is exactly what they want, to create a clear demarcation between "game enthusiast" (which is what gamer has always meant and still largely means to people who have never heard of GG), and them. They WANT everyone with a differing opinion from them to be put in another camp. Imagine if someone tried to do the same thing with "sports fan" or "cinemaphile". Hentropy (talk) 18:50, 15 January 2016 (UTC)

I fully agree. It's like associating "basketball fan" or "hockey fan" with the people who caused millions of dollars of damage during sports riots over the past twenty years. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 19:18, 15 January 2016 (UTC)

I do think some of the claims were kind of overblown -- That Dragon, Cancer, for instance. It had already been a target for the trolls since it was first announced for the OUYA system years ago, it currently has a "very positive" 92% (153/166) approval rate in its user reviews, and outside of a handful of nutjobs, there really doesn't seem to be a connection between "profiting on cancer"/"neckbeardy anti-theism" and "Anita's approval" as reasons for the community attacks (Other games given the thumbs up by Anita, such as Never Alone: Kisima Ingitchuna, Crypt of the Necrodancer, and Read-Only Memories -- the last of which being, let's be frank here, prime target material for anti-Tumblrite/SJW types considering the Technicolor hair and the surfeit of the pronoun "zhe" -- aren't targeted).

That being said, I do fully agree with the author about the progression of the "Gamer" community, at least at its extremes. It's incredible how childish the community on Steam and elsewhere has gotten towards criticism, particularly criticism with a feminist slant, to the point where some are actually siding with Jack Thompson. It's just incredible. Most of me wants to dismiss this as just immaturity -- ten minutes on any public online FPS with voice chat makes it pretty clear how many literal children are on -- but as time goes on, that hope is fading. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 19:06, 15 January 2016 (UTC)

That Dragon, Cancer is getting a fair amount of people causing a ruckus, but the most vitriolic tends to be those misguided individuals who think that they shouldn't have charged at all for the game. So while some of the usual suspects are coming out (duur walking simulator), I'm not sure if I'd conflate it wholesale with the GG crowd. Strangely enough the only real heat I've seen Read-Only Memories get is from the more progressive crowd for trying to conflate the otherkin stuff with transfolk. I may have contributed to that a little... still liked the game overall though. The more you think about it the more you realize that there are more "progressivey artsy" games than there ever was in the past and most of the former GG crowd has basically given up trying to decry them or make much stink out of them, probably because they finally realized how hypocritical that was. It's a matter of the modern internet that someone is going to say something nasty in their shoutbox, but I don't think that means it's some kind of epidemic problem that requires us to change the meaning of words. Hentropy (talk) 20:03, 15 January 2016 (UTC)

Here is a rebuttal by ZenofDesign Re this piece. I especially like this quote from the comments section:

"Gaters aren’t their parents; they don’t care for the kind of military adventurism of the Dubya years (which doesn’t prevent their favorite games from being infected with it, which makes me suspect that their objection is mostly that to die in battle would be too much of a personal inconvenience to their playing video games), they don’t deny the reality of climate change, they’re not the Christian Right.

"They are, however, scientistic to the point of the ridiculous, where everything that can’t be quantified becomes irrelevant. (Can you picture people like them even bothering to consider something as fuzzy as “ethics in journalism”?) They, and their belief in universal logic, and reason, where everything that doesn’t fit in this just Does Not Compute. It’s also why they tend to take everything literally, from 'gamers are dead' to talking of 'corrupt' journalists not as we normally would, but 'corrupt' as a computer file would be, to be replaced by a properly functioning copy that doesn’t deviate from the rigid Gamer Consensus.

"And where did they pick that kind of mentality up? From video games. The glorious world of the Skinner box where minmaxing yields tangible results, and where some choices are Empirically Superior to others, and where all that matters is to get ahead by any means necessary. And because video games are self-centered, solipsism becomes a universally applicable model – hence the result where GamerGate is always insisted upon as having no leaders, while every Gater’s personal goals are made the movement’s, regardless of who’s winning the tug of war.

"The cause of GamerGate is video games themselves." Blitz (Complaints Box) 02:55, 16 January 2016 (UTC)

I would say that's a pretty good description of many of the GG types, probably better than what I could come up with. Interacting with them doesn't yield much of a "Christian Rightist" tone even superficially, and it seems the author is just making a somewhat lazy comparison because the Christian Right is reviled. However, I think the overgeneralization of people and deciding their political philosophies for them is partially what led to the outrage in the first place and repulsed people who might have been liberal progressives. Hentropy (talk) 04:14, 16 January 2016 (UTC)
So videogames are what causes people to act irrationally and get angry about silly things. As if that never happens anywhere else. Why do people insist on writing these pseudo-analytical articles that proclaim with certainty that they've discovered the weirdly specific complex motivations behind every single angry person? "Oh, you see, their parents were right-wing religious people, but now they act like life is a videogame, and they see people who disagree with them as enemies to eliminate at all costs in order to win, just like a game". It reminds me of how people argue "people are feminists because they are fat and ugly and they can't get a man" in that it constructs some story behind every member of an enormously broad group based on armchair psychology that sounds convincing enough to support a certain narrative. I don't care who it comes from, enough of the pseudointellectualism.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 18:26, 16 January 2016 (UTC)
That has to be one of the shittiest, most insulting way to characterize an entire group I've ever seen. It's got this "I'm calling you a sociopathic coward with a fundamental dysfunction in your human empathy as well as a hypocrite but no offense meant BRO" vibe that you only ever see in self-righteous political extremists of all sides. NewFrenchHotness (talk) 10:28, 18 January 2016 (UTC)

Enjoyed this comment:

Guys, seriously. We're not about eating people. That was that other great white shark. And I reported him. We're opposed to attacking boats and humans. You just bit yourself in half for sympathy. Where's the pictures or video or chat logs of me eating you? I have yet to see any proof of these attacks your talking about. If you don't have any proof, then you're just fearmongering and ignorant about my community, SJW facist!

Laughed at this one:

I don't think I ever saw so many lies in a single article, even by SJW standards! SJWs are the group doing 90% the censorship in reality! It's hilarious that a group that actively promotes censorship (like SJWs) would accuse anyone of being a "censor", but that's what this clickbait author is attempting to do.

SJWs have way more in common with the religious right than the normal, non-political gamers. SJWs are the ones who want to censor and ban games for all sorts of reasons : fictional sexism, fictional racism, boobs too big, etc...

FuzzyCatPotato!™ (talk/stalk) 16:56, 18 January 2016 (UTC)

I felt that this was just a moment of another, more politically oriented version of the "Video Games Cause Violence" Argument.69.113.232.152 (talk) 01:08, 21 January 2016 (UTC)

Learning The Hard Way[edit]

Not to nitpick, but that "Learning The Hard Way" article is from way back in April of last year. I'm fairly confident it was even posted here closer to when it came out. While it's a good read and pretty interesting, why is it posted again, now?AcidTrial (talk) 17:28, 21 January 2016 (UTC)

Commented out Pippa (talk) 18:27, 21 January 2016 (UTC)
I posted it because I failed to check the date. Oops. I removed it rather than commenting it out because it had accrued zero votes. BicyclewheelToxic mowse.gif 16:33, 22 January 2016 (UTC)

Pro-Palestinian Paranoia[edit]

I personally don't agree with France's anti-boycott laws - they're indeed a rather egregious violation of free speech -, but implying that theys specifically exist to stop anti-Israel criticism or to gag antisionists is overblown paranoia. Yes, such a thing can be considered hate speech under French law - pretty baffling to me as well. Things'd be the same if one called for a boycott of Libanese goods - funnily enough, no one calls for that, despite the rather poor treatment of Palestinians in Liban. NewFrenchHotness (talk) 21:38, 27 January 2016 (UTC)

They don't specifically target anti-Israel criticism, no. But it's always been trivially easy to place speech you oppose in the category of 'hate speech'. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 16:47, 29 January 2016 (UTC)


The Onion and Hillary Clinton[edit]

Shouldn't that item read "Libertarian website cherry picks Onion article, ignoring the valid point about sexism in the media, to have a dig at 'TPTB' "? London Grump (talk) 17:34, 20 February 2016 (UTC)

Yeah, personally I'm gonna need more than one vaguely pro-Clinton satirical article as "proof" of a charge of propaganda. The Onion had always been rather liberal and tending towards feminism, and I don't think pointing out the very real double standard in the media about Clinton means they are endorsing her. Hentropy (talk) 22:48, 20 February 2016 (UTC)
Yeah they seem to be mostly cranks.--Owlman (talk) 23:06, 20 February 2016 (UTC)
Next thing you know they will buy a 40% share of South Park and turn it into a comedy show with jokes and political satire and goofy pictures! Even more risque...that they would lampoon celebrity politicians and mock the stupid things their critics say. Can you imagine the scandal!!! --37.134.28.95 (talk) 00:58, 22 February 2016 (UTC)
I think we may need to add in a section of this to The Onion and/or Reddit. 'Cause the latter is in an uproar over the former. (When they're not currently frothing over someone named James in DOTA 2). ℕoir LeSable (talk) 01:31, 29 February 2016 (UTC)

Sam Harris' Interview[edit]

After his bullshit conditions, sermonizing, and condescending comments and demands, I'd publicly release that 4-hour conversation to the internet in several different places and consequences be damned. --Castaigne2 (talk) 15:47, 8 March 2016 (UTC)

What interview and did you make an interview with him, so you can release it?--Kugelschreiber (talk) (mail) (block) 15:53, 8 March 2016 (UTC) 15:53, 8 March 2016 (UTC)
See the linked article in the Blogosphere, said link entitled "Sam Harris: the hypocritical pseudo-intellectual." It provides the context for my statement. --Castaigne2 (talk) 16:03, 8 March 2016 (UTC)
Disregard my post, I didn't read your post throughly enough. Sorry. orz--Kugelschreiber (talk) (mail) (block) 16:07, 8 March 2016 (UTC) 16:07, 8 March 2016 (UTC)
S'all good. --Castaigne2 (talk) 16:24, 8 March 2016 (UTC)
He would if he could, but Harris had full control over the interview and the right to release it. Sam Harris may have had some place in the skeptic circles before, but after this display he's basically all-in on the irrational Islamophobia industry. And unfortunately it looks like he's dragging Bill Maher down with him... Hentropy (talk) 06:35, 11 March 2016 (UTC)

Kyle Kulinsky discusses some of the best lines of Bernie Sanders in the Democratic debate on Univision[edit]

The link doesn't work. --Bigic (talk) 20:50, 11 March 2016 (UTC)

Human Rights[edit]

Personally, the whole whole Intercept article seems more like a tu quoque. Sure, Clinton's not exactly clean on the human rights front, but really? Sanders is never going to win if he is unable to criticize fucking Cuba on human rights abuses. It's possible to say that Cuba is bad, and the US helped cause that badness, and hold those positions are the same time. This Sanders/Greenwaldesque concept that "Russia/Assad/Castro/etc. aren't really that bad since the US has done some bad things" is not going to be one that sells in the general election. Hentropy (talk) 06:49, 11 March 2016 (UTC)

On what I suspect is a somewhat related note, singing the praises of Jesse "Hymietown" Jackson isn't a particularly good idea on the home front either. I'd like to see Sanders more clearly state that, even though the US bears some responsibility for these situations, the people currently running things also bear responsibility and that they can't be condoned. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 22:32, 14 March 2016 (UTC)
I agree with Sanders that Castro brought a better health care system (though w/o Soviet subsidies and with the US's sanctions it has faltered) and education system, but the political imprisonment was extremely problematic. I think he should be able to condemn human rights abuses when he sees them; Clinton on the other hand doesn't seem to understand why supporting these regimes and forcing regime change are bad ideas.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 22:46, 14 March 2016 (UTC) 22:46, 14 March 2016 (UTC)

Foreign names[edit]

In a land made up of immigrants and their descendants, what counts as a 'foreign name' AMassiveGay (talk) 22:15, 16 March 2016 (UTC)

Non Anglo-Saxon.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 22:45, 16 March 2016 (UTC) 22:45, 16 March 2016 (UTC)
To put a finer point on it, any name that sounds distinctively "brown". Raja Sadiq in particular I think they may have run away from. Though I do agree that the article was misnamed, there is no such thing as a "foreign name" in America. Call it what it is: "Trump voters decide not to vote for Trump because some of his delegates sound middle-eastern to them." I'm sure someone can shorten that and get the point across... Hentropy (talk) 07:38, 17 March 2016 (UTC)

Merrick Garland[edit]

Yes he has conservaitive views in some areas, but that's the whole point - Obama is purposely trolling the Republicans by nominating someone they'd pass without a murmur if President McCain or Romney had put him forward. It's to make them look unreasonable. He's playing the Senate GOP like a fish and they're falling for it. Flannan Isle (talk) 19:36, 17 March 2016 (UTC)

I still think it's a little dangerous, if GOP calls the bluff, reverses course, and confirms this guy, it means at best we'll have another swing justice on the court. Which would be better, but not great. There's no doubt it was a political move to try to make the GOP look unreasonable when they roadblock him for another year. If Clinton wins in November they will then maybe try to rush him through, and I'm not sure if Obama can stop them. Hentropy (talk) 20:41, 17 March 2016 (UTC)
Half a loaf is better than no bread. Garland, for all his faults, is still a lot better than Scalia. Flannan Isle (talk) 21:16, 17 March 2016 (UTC)
No doubt about that, but I think if he's so centrist/conservative that they end up with a "he might actually be put on the court" situation, rather than just a political pawn, it is disappointing. He's a great political pawn and there's a chance he could swing left more often than right, but this was supposed to be the justice that turned the court liberal. I still would have chosen Srinivasan, as a political pawn he also injects race into the campaign and give plenty of time for the Republicans to embarrass themselves further. Hentropy (talk) 22:32, 17 March 2016 (UTC)
The last compromise pick with an uncontroversial record who was nominated by a Democratic President and supported/recommended by Hatch was Notorious RBG herself, so I think that trying to determine who he'll side with based on that alone doesn't cut it. From what I've seen of his record he's good on antitrust, good on campaign finance, good on guns, good on women's health, and good on environmental regulations. The big issues I have with him are his age and some of his positions on civil liberties. I'd prefer a Watford or a Liu, but Garland isn't exactly a bad choice by any means, he's just a safe one that doesn't rock the boat. FEMA Camp Counselortalk
Such a disappointment. Can't you do better than that, Obama? Recreational Vehicle (talk) 20:20, 20 March 2016 (UTC)
Not with the current Senate, no. Flannan Isle (talk) 21:03, 20 March 2016 (UTC)

Wake up call[edit]

If abu ghraib and other such shite hasnt already woken folk, they are sleeping too heavily to give much of a shite bout new cia hijinks. AMassiveGay (talk) 02:20, 2 April 2016 (UTC)

That YouTube video[edit]

I watched the indicated segment (albeit with sound turned off). Is there something I am missing? Why was this added? Much as I can appreciate random wtf humor, it doesn't seem relevant to RW. Blitz (Complaints Box) 15:57, 8 April 2016 (UTC)

It's a pastiche of various cartoons from the 1980s and 1990s that ends up with the story of Xenu and a pitch for Dianetics. I found it amusing, and thought other readers here would too. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 17:35, 8 April 2016 (UTC)
it might have avoided some down votes if it gave an indication of what it was AMassiveGay (talk) 17:36, 8 April 2016 (UTC)

Can I just say[edit]

...that this woman is so fucking cool? Talk about doing a 180 and standing by your mistake, even mustering the force to actively combat that nonsense that once was part of her own M.O. (before she understood what it really was). In the end, she's already doing good by helping science as a student of biomedicine. But to also take the fight to the naturopaths - I have sick turn table spinnin' respect for that. Rock on, Britt Marie Hermes! Reverend Black Percy (talk) 12:08, 18 April 2016 (UTC)

"The Smug Style in American Liberalism"[edit]

I want to argue because this piece is twisting itself into pretzels to assert that informed positions aren't any better than uninformed ones because it comes off as condescending when you point out that people you disagree with are flagrantly wrong.

"Liberals know climate change is real, and their smugness about it is why conservatives won't change their minds, not maybe, the millions-annually propaganda campaign, and a political party that will tell them they're right no matter what." As if politely ignoring the problem makes it go away.

Don't get me wrong, there's a lot of danger in overconfidence of your moral and political rectitude, but if we have a problem, its far-and-away more developed in the right wing's new(since 2000ish) tell-people-they're-right-no-matter-what machine than "smug" liberals. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 13:56, 22 April 2016 (UTC)

Pretty much. The article never explains why any of the things we know are wrong, because they aren't. Qscgy (talk) 14:44, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
i can dea l with the smugness, its the sanctimony that pisses me of AMassiveGay (talk) 14:05, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
Maybe it's me, but making an article the disparages the educated while making a big political correctness stink about how the educated make the conservatives in the dummy party feel bad seems...not so smart. -EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 14:19, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
Nah, I don't mind the suggestion that I'm doing something wrong by thinking I'm better than other people. I have an internal debate about that all the time, because it's a fair concern. I specifically disagree with the interpretation that the "smugness" is the cause of a widening political divide and not the institutions that reinforce ignorance as a badge of honor and are willing to sell out objective truth. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 14:26, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
This is the part that especially irritated me - "But this does not excuse liberals beating full retreat to the colleges and the cities, abandoning the dispossessed to their fate. It does not excuse surrendering a century of labor politics in the name of electability. It does not excuse gazing out decades later to find that those left behind are not up on the latest thought and deciding, We didn't abandon them. The idiots didn't want to be saved."
It does not matter whether you are liberal, conservative, or neither; the paragraph is plain fucking wrong. Labor was told decades ago that the labor jobs were going away. That they would be replaced with machines. That capital costs triumph over increasing labor costs over time.
Labor and labor politics weren't left behind. What's left of labor and labor politics are the ones who stubbornly assisted that the small rural factory town, the turn-the-widget jobs, the blue-collar industry of the 1950s, was here to stay and would never go away. The point of diminishing returns was reached.
Perhaps it's simply because I'm IT, but I highly resent the implication that you are supposed to reach out people forever and ever and ever with infinite patience. When comes the endpoint? When do you finally say "OK, we're done?"
“Arrakis teaches the attitude of the knife - chopping off what's incomplete and saying: 'Now, it's complete because it's ended here.'" --Castaigne2 (talk) 15:31, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
I think a case like this was written better by Orwell when he wrote The Road to Wigan Pier. Smugness blows off the concerns of certain classes of people and the American failed to convince labor to become welcoming towards women, minorities, and immigrants. The Dems have sided with capital interests and abandoned the 50 state strategy; I know from personal experience that there is a lot of hatred among conservatives for the liberals in New England and the West Coast. The US govt didn't help the economy switch to a service based system so now we have rabid protectionism.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 15:50, 22 April 2016 (UTC) 15:50, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
A good old fashioned Republican tariff is the fix for that. Republicans need to realize that it's much much easier to keep out foreign manufactured goods than it is to build a wall to keep out Latino immigrants. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 15:53, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
I like free trade, but there should be heavy punishment for slaves and we should restrict trade with repressive regimes.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 15:59, 22 April 2016 (UTC) 15:59, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
I applaud your idealism. However, I'll continue operating on basis of realpolitik and rational self-interest. --Castaigne2 (talk) 16:05, 22 April 2016 (UTC)


But not all conservative positions are "flagrantly wrong". Take abortion, for example. I think that we can all agree that at birth a baby is a human. But when exactly does this property of "being human" start to exist? 10 minutes before birth? A week? A month? This is a genuinely hard moral and ethical question that touches on question such as "what does it mean to be human?" Sure, science can *help* answer this, but it can never give a full answer as it's a moral and ethical question. IMHO being against abortion ("pro-life") is a perfectly rational and sane position. Not a position I personally agree with − and I think many of the religious don't use the best arguments − but it's not a position that's somehow "flagrantly wrong".
Another example: health care. I very strongly disagree with most American conservatives there, but from their point of view and framework of thinking the ability to have full freedom and choice is *more important* than having universal healthcare. Again, I very strongly disagree with this, but who am I to say that these values and ethical judgements are "flagrantly wrong" and smugly declare that I am right and they are obviously wrong?
You mention climate change. Yes, that is a position where I feel one can safely − and smugly − say conservatives are just dead wrong. But the topic of climate change wasn't really mentioned in the article. In other words, that's a bit of a straw man. In general, I feel that the gist of the article is spot-on. Carpetsmoker (talk) 16:19, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
Smugness and moral superiority are a two way street. Many conservatives claim, or used to claim, that their opponents were unpatriotic, lazy, and pleasure-seeking. (As movement conservatism accepted the gospel of the Free Market, this strain became muted, but hasn't entirely gone away.) I do miss the good old days when liberals mocked the moralistic prissiness of the right wing, rather than becoming a mirror image of it. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 16:39, 22 April 2016 (UTC)

Look, I completely agree that this should be up - it's not everyday liberals are asked to ponder their own biases and beliefs on here, but quite frankly, this guy is beating a dead horse made of bullshit. Yes, people who agree with many more "liberal" policies may act like they "know" the facts, but that is because they actually do. The problem isn't that everybody promoting complete crap is dishonest liars, but because many of them are up to their necks in bullshit. Sometimes the bullshit was created wholecloth to support policies certain people wanted, at all costs. However, more commonly, a person was simply misguided. Whether they had help from some people who's interests were best served by promoting their bullshit - whether the people who helped promote it latched onto it because they wanted to believe - or the misguided person was able to spread the ideas themselves - the bullshit was spread around like manure on the field of the population. Perhaps there is some justification for conservative views - perhaps not. The person above mentioned abortion. If they just said Abortion is wrong, because it is ethically and morally wrong, to my personal views, and I for one won't do it, and will encourage those around me not to do it, then it would be all fine and dandy. However, that is not what they do. They demonize the women who get them. They demonize those who give them as "baby killers". That isn't necessarily the most misinformative of what they do, but they do it, and it has real consequences. Abortion doctors have been killed, and at least some women, who wouldn't be shamed by their own sense of ethics and morals are publicly shamed. Then, from that they move onto complete misinformation. Like that somehow women who have had abortions are more likely to be depressed or even suicidal. That Women who get them may cause problems to their future fertility. They show photos of things that aren't even legal, and claim this is what is going on. That is grade A B.S. Sorry. All of those things are patent grade bullshit, yet they are common "knowledge" within the pro-life crowd.

The problem isn't that they don't know, it's that they live in a completely different world of facts, and theirs happen to line up less with reality, than that of proponents of most liberal policies. There is an entire media aparatus set up to tell them they are more right than they think they are. There is no telling them otherwise. Perhaps some argue liberal academia is like that, but it actually isn't. These people are wrong, and there's people who benefit from them being wrong, and they work hard to promote it, or at least persuade them this one thing or a few things, *cough abortion and gay marriage* is far more important than things that are actually, objectively more important, such as climate change, or even their own economic self-interest. There is a reason "conservative academia" is not exactly a driving force in the world of academia - it is because the ideas are wrong, and in many cases have long since been discarded. The only "supply-side" economics professors I have met have been at the community college level. I am sure a few exist at a few elite universities, because they do publish papers, but the field as a whole does tend to support more "liberal" policies. There is a reason Liberty University is literally the laughing stock of the academic world. Yet, you wouldn't know this from consuming mass media, whether for controversey and ratings, or for ideology. These people are granted equal status by media outlets that seek to be neutral, and then are given god-like status in media sources who bend to their ideology.

Trump is a symptom, but he is a symptom of a separate world of facts that for far too long has been given equal weight in the venues most Americans experience, beyond that of academic journals. He can make up his own facts, but those who promote or believe bullshit have convinced a great deal of people that media is "lying to them", so whatever Trump says could totally be true, and since it aligns with their preconceived notions, then it is. If conservatives are more open-minded, which in my experience with plenty of conservatives, isn't actually true, they are so open-minded, their brain, along with it's critical thinking faculties has fallen out.

Feel free to disagree, this is America. This is a site devoted to rationality, so, this type of article should be here, not in the "clogs" as it were. Maybe it even makes some good points, but I don't think it reflects reality so much as it does the author's preconceived notions. Surely, he'd think I'm smug, and perhaps I am, but it isn't because I am smug that many Republican voters vote against their own economic self-interest, it is because of promoters of bullshit, whether personally deluded or liars, and because some have been convinced to vote against their own interests in every way, except for one, or maybe two or three issues, because it is "so much more" important. I'm sure some would still think so, without all the bullshit, but many wouldn't unless they were whipped up into a frenzy, in large part due to falsehoods.

It also is worth noting that the Democrats actually do have a majority of voters siding with them these days. There was a swing election in 2010 that resulted in many "blue" or "purple" states being ridiculously gerry-mandered. Despite landslide victories in the popular congressional vote the last 2 congressional elections, some states are sending upwards of 3/4's of their representatives as members of the party on the losing side. There is a reason Romney lost in 2012, and it was that he was forced too far to the right by the primary process. That is why Republican party leaders have been cringing at the thought of a Trump or Cruze candidacy. The majority of voters are at least Democratic-leaning these days, it's just the majority of our representatives somehow aren't. --Gambrel (talk)


If there's anything positive to be garnered from the article, I think it is not who is right and who is wrong. I'm generally pretty elitist and anti-populist, to me the most terrifying thing in politics is when the tide turns based on shallow emotional appeals based on what makes people feel good and faulty logic based on magical thinking. The fatal flaw on the left, however, is that this is a pitfall only on the right, and some more elitist types on the right think the same about the left. More leftist populism is being bandied about as the new, hip, intellectual thing to do, which is based on flawless logic, when it simply isn't. Anti-nuclear, anti-fracking, anti-vaxx, protectionism, while there are kernels of problems within these things, pretty much every expert opinion is counter to leftist thinking, among some at least. We sneer when the right redbaits over Obama, but we continue to handwave and ignore the authoritarian Maoists and Stalinists as if they're not worth talking about in the same breath as modern-day Democrats, all while incessantly comparing modern-day Republicans to old-school fascists. The fact is that both examples have one denominator: populism took over and became all about affixing blame and score-settling than actually fixing shit.

The point here is that these people cannot simply be patronized and ridiculed out of existence. There was an article some time ago about The Daily Show and other left-leaning and leftist political satire, that for all the entertainment it gave its audience, it did little to move the cultural needle among the opponents. Laughing at Trump only emboldens him and his true believers. Supporting Trump or the right does not make one "stupid". Not everyone has the time or energy to be a policy wonk. What we need is communication. Had there been a concerted effort to explain why Trump was wrong from the beginning, rather than just dismissing him and belittling his supporters, he may not be around any more. Now he's on some track for the nomination, and if the leftist populist puritans have their way, he will be President. Not because he was the best candidate, but because leftists decided that being condescending was more important than being convincing. Hentropy (talk) 18:56, 23 April 2016 (UTC)

Well your view of elitism explains a lot of why we disagree since I would consider myself your inverse. Elitism, in my view, leads to bubbles of trust and privilege that blinds those who are within it; this blindness has always led to failure and a view that one should build a fortress to protect the progress already made instead of growing it. I see politics as an unavoidable trench warfare that can only be soothed by empathy which elites can't do because they all too often fail to recognize the frustration outside their bubble. Of course, prejudice and anti-intellectualism exist among grassroots, but they also exist within the higher classes bubble where market fundamentalism exists on the conservative side while "all natural" woo exists among the liberals. I dislike the constant Godwinning of Trump and this view that his supporters are some kind of exception when these people have been abandoned and screwed and propaganda peddled to them has led to rampant anti-intellectualism.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 19:20, 23 April 2016 (UTC) 19:20, 23 April 2016 (UTC)
I'll take "market fundamentalism" a thousand times over "all natural". The first's being convinced of the righteousness of an actual, defined idea and principle, the other is nothing but emotional attachment to something illogical and ill-defined. I'm an elitist too, in the sense that I wish the masses were more like the elites sometimes: I'll take someone who prefers a prudent but reasoned approach to progress over someone who'll drag anyone more moderate than them through the mud, someone utterly incapable of understanding the fact that he and the moderates have the same endgame but that their way to get there is more prudent. It's easy to be a passion-driven utopist, because utopies have no obligation of results and only exist to permit the condemnation of what people have actually built into existence in the name of what doesn't exist. Viewing politics as a trench warfare is nothing but intellectual abdication. NewFrenchHotness (talk) 01:43, 24 April 2016 (UTC)
Well, market fundamentalism tends to handwave slavery and endorse "scientific management". Anyways, I don't see how politics isn't trench warfare; it always involves deal making and hard stances in order to push the borders. The main problem with elites is their hierarchy which they state was earned in a meritocracy but refuse to acknowledge that they were born with an advantage they helped them gain their position. What causes anger among the proles is when the elite realise they can ignore their concerns and build a system that doesn't hold them accountable. When this happens those at the bottom will feel opprosed and persecuted even if they aren't and will easily be picked up by a dangerous radical. In the US, we have had several radical groups that supported equal rights; one example was Bash Back!Wikipedia's W.svg, a radical gay rights group, but it never gained national attention or widespread support like, say, the German American Bund. I think a great example of this is the Men's Rights Movement which has largely been a hate movement that was spawned by second wave feminism preceived refusal to take men's issues seriously. Even if a minority of feminists disregarded men's soceital issues these men were convinced that the movement itself was the problem and had to be removed. Many misogynists and anti-feminists used this frustration to push against female rights and progate ideas that all feminists wanted to oppress men which has led to people like Paul Elam and Roosh V gaining a public platform. Now, I am not blaming people for supporting groups that effectively work to exploit them and I understand why poor whites support Trump and many minorities support the established Dems because these people have supported them in some way at sometime and they fear what the other side might do to them even if there won't actually be any retaliation.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 02:21, 24 April 2016 (UTC) 02:21, 24 April 2016 (UTC)
Well, if there's anything history teaches us is that if freedoms aren't protected, they can be easily reversed, to never be seen again. I suppose whether I'm an elitist or not, the point is that you have many liberals who have an elitist mindset when they are at least pseudo-populist and prone more to emotional analysis of political issues. They then look down on yokels because they don't respect their pseudo-elite opinions. Politics isn't trench warfare, the other side is not an enemy with ill intent, it's about trying to secure solutions to problems that cover the most bases. Even if you treat it like trench warfare, most average people do not and punish politicians/administrations that do. Despite all the alarmism and sensationalism the media feeds to both sides of the issues, shit really aren't falling apart as dramatically as they claim. No, no one has a crystal ball and can tell you how a particular thing is going to shake out, even the smartest and most informed among us aren't gods. Populism does have its place in its purest form, average people should not be locked out of the process. Both Bush and Obama has done a fair amount of harm in this regard, after years of bold-faced lies and weaseling, and distrust is inevitable after that. Hentropy (talk) 06:56, 24 April 2016 (UTC)
Yes I understand that freedoms most be defended but the insistence of certain intellectuals to build a fortress that will protect these has always failed because people want results and crisis create a demand for such results. My analogy that politics is trench warfare isn't supposed to demonize the other side but to show how the culture war is always inevitable because the media and politicians hype up political gridlock. I realise most people don't punish their political representatives but that is either because they like them or feel that there is no alternative and therefore are just complacent. As long as there are hierarchies people at the bottom will see smugness where there may not be any while people on top will see misguided anti-intellectualism.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 07:14, 24 April 2016 (UTC) 07:14, 24 April 2016 (UTC)

The Fluoride Stare[edit]

Seriously? I guess you have to name the look people give you after you say the stupidest thing they have ever heard but this takes the cake in willful ignorance. It's not the look of fluoride killing them, it's the look of what just came out of the conspiracy theorists mouth slowly killing the person inside as they lose all faith in humanity. -EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 16:16, 25 April 2016 (UTC)

Really, the main thing I bydo is wonder what exactly these guys brush their teeth with. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 16:57, 25 April 2016 (UTC)
they let them soak in a glass at night AMassiveGay (talk) 17:02, 25 April 2016 (UTC)
As far as I know it's usually baking soda or something like Burt's Bees. I knew someone who used all the natural hygiene products and all I knew is that they didn't used to work well. The reason I knew is because I was absolutely confused how someone could spend so much time on her appearance with such great results and still smell like she was homeless. -EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 17:22, 25 April 2016 (UTC)
Don't forget oil pulling. Which, to be fair, probably worked well for Indus valley Siberian Buryat peoples centuries ago prior to the invention of modern dental care, but not very effective now. ℕoir LeSable (talk) 17:28, 25 April 2016 (UTC)
Literally next door to burt's bees factory here. BRB, adding fluoride to it. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 18:09, 28 April 2016 (UTC)

About the georestricted PBS video[edit]

I downloaded it via proxy, should I post the link for people outside of the US to download and watch it (on Mega.nz)?--Kugelschreiber (talk) (mail) (block) 22:46, 11 May 2016 (UTC) 22:46, 11 May 2016 (UTC)

Yes.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 01:31, 12 May 2016 (UTC) 01:31, 12 May 2016 (UTC)
Mmkay, will do.--Kugelschreiber (talk) (mail) (block) 10:55, 12 May 2016 (UTC) 10:55, 12 May 2016 (UTC)

Bernie thing[edit]

I've definitely noticed the conspiracy theory quality of rhetoric coming in supporting Sanders now. Is that just an inevitability of playing the outsider game? When he first started gaining a popularity, it wasn't like this. Is it just tribalism in the face of an apparent electoral defeat reaching for any tool available? What happened? ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 14:36, 19 May 2016 (UTC)

Meh, I would say it was always there but now it is more prevalent.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 14:38, 19 May 2016 (UTC) 14:38, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
As Sanders continues to fall behind, the conspiracy-mongers are getting increasingly angry. And Bernie is responsible for encouraging this. Typhoon (talk) 14:46, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
No he isn't. Even if he denounces this stuff it wouldn't go away.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 15:06, 19 May 2016 (UTC) 15:06, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
[1]

"For weeks, some current and former Sanders campaign workers have privately acknowledged feeling disheartened about Mr. Weaver’s determination to go after the Democratic National Committee, fearing a pitched battle with the party they hope to support in the general election. The intraparty fighting has affected morale, they say, and raised concerns that Mr. Weaver, a longtime Sanders aide who more recently ran a comic book store, was not devoted to achieving Democratic unity. Several described the campaign’s message as having devolved into a near-obsession with perceived conspiracies on the part of Mrs. Clinton’s allies."

Yes he is, Owlman. Politifact was recently debunking conspiracy theories that Sanders is enabling by letting Weaver go crazy. Typhoon (talk) 15:33, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
So he is going after the DNC. That doesn't prove he is perpetuating conspiracies.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 15:44, 19 May 2016 (UTC) 15:44, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Umm, did your eyes failed you when reading the last couple sentences in the quotebox? Typhoon (talk) 16:06, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Yeah I read that several anonymous people believe it is a conspiracy fueled campaign. Besides being skeptical of that article it is still an article that opens with "Sanders is willing to damage Clinton" as if she wasn't damaged before.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 16:11, 19 May 2016 (UTC) 16:11, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Tribalism is a lazy argument. Withoutaname (talk) 15:39, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Unless I seriously did something to suggest I was JAQing off, could you not treat a question as an assertion. Please and thank you. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 19:03, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
I think that people are assuming that there is a centralized conspiracy when this is how primaries have been run and the American election system has significant problems.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 19:12, 19 May 2016 (UTC) 19:12, 19 May 2016 (UTC)

Nah it's largely been like this from the beginning, but Bernie fans have been bottling all the conspiracy stuff up because they wanted to win. Now that it seems like there's no chance, they're throwing everything at the wall and unleashing the dogs of the internet. It's true, this year was supposed to be Hillary's crowning primary to many party insiders. The DNC did not adequately prepare for this possibility and when it came about, they handled it the wrong way, which is why I do think DWS should step down and the DNC be more deferent to those that voted for Bernie. However, the madness has got to stop. I know whenever someone says something they don't like they started yawping about "proof", but it's really all over the place. You can go on any website frequented by Bernie supporters and it's just a giant circle jerk of conspiracy theory, namecalling, and naked tribalism. Whether or not Bernie says he "condones" it or not is largely beside the point, he has fed these conspiracy theories by never explicitly calling them out, and fostering the atmosphere that the "deck was stacked against him" even though he lost by every democratic measure. So they throw out red herrings about superdelegates- which would require them to do the undemocratic thing and support Bernie because he wants them to- and conspiracy theories. He talks like Donald Trump or some kind of Gamergater. "Oh no, you shouldn't harass people, but the person I'm totally not harassing is really really bad and I sympathize with the people who harassed her!" It's ridiculous, and I'm glad at least some progressive website had the courage to go against the Bros and point out how ridiculous it is. Hentropy (talk) 21:38, 19 May 2016 (UTC)

That's a convenient narrative you've got in place there. It lets you avoid examining the true reasons behind the frustration of Bernie Sanders supporters as well as the apparent success behind Clinton's establishment centrism, the "lesser evilism" practice in politics. Even though his loss was inevitable, dismissing Sanders supporters, like Trump supporters, will exacerbate the problem. Withoutaname (talk) 21:51, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
I don't really care at this point. I'm not really a Hillary supporter, which often puts me in a tight spot. Bernie fans (I am just barely stopping myself from calling them Bros over and over, but only because some of the women act the same way) have basically threatened to split the party for months now if Hillary supporters don't give them a lap dance and tell them how great they are all the time. They tried that for months and it didn't work. Hillary was just a war criminal shill whose wall street bucks fuel the evil American Killing Machine and everyone who doesn't agree with them loves drinking the blood of Syrian refugees and working poor, and nothing was going to sway them, not even a Trump presidency. If you'd prefer Trump to Clinton, then as far as I'm concerned you're a Trump supporter and should be treated as such. I won't be voting for either one of them anyway. Sure, Bernie fans have legit grievances, just as the Tea Party and Trump supports have some very real, legitimate grievances with a system and the government and all that jazz. But if you act like a child, you get treated like one, even if an 8 o'clock bed time is totally, really unfair. Hentropy (talk) 22:02, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
It's more important to look past the tone of their message and understand where they're coming from. Same with Trump attracting working class and rural whites. I don't see anything wrong with their "conspiracy theories" when they seem to be slowly realizing what should have been obvious from the beginning of this election, that the decks were stacked against them in the first place. Also why haven't you voted for Jill Stein? Withoutaname (talk) 22:13, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
It's not about the tone, it's about the content. Sanders certainly doesn't have a "tone" problem from my eyes, it's a content problem. Nothing about it has been a "conspiracy", it's all been out in the open. Sanders had to come from nothing and do his own fundraising because no one knew who he was and no one took his campaign seriously in the beginning. Democratic party officials don't particularly like him, because he just become a Democrat last year to run for President, and during his time in Congress he's done no fundraising or organizational efforts for Democrats, and if Barney Frank (the progressive hero before Sanders came to town) is to be believed, he doesn't work well with others because he's a pompous egotist and purist behind closed doors. He did a good job of conveying his message early in the campaign, and pushed Clinton to the left on some issues, bringing other pertinent issues to the forefront. If he was the nominee, I'd probably vote for him, where I probably won't with Hillary. That does not mean, however, that I'm obligated to apologize for his supporters extremist and misogynistic drivel that he has coddled and provided ammo for in the later stages of the campaign. When the general does come around, and since I live in a tiny and largely inconsequential state, I will vote for a third party that most aligns with my ideas, and that person will not be likely not be Jill Stein, who is an anti-science moonbat on more than one issue. Hentropy (talk) 22:32, 19 May 2016 (UTC)
Well, Clintonites acted the same way and Hillary never denounced their behavior. Now I would like Sanders to denounce violence w/o a non-sequester and I would like Clinton to denouce racism w/o dog whistling about "national origins" but this is out of the candidates control and not unique.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 01:37, 20 May 2016 (UTC) 01:37, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
Clinton dropped out before the convention when it was clear it was over, and went on to campaign for Obama. The PUMAs were ridiculed and ignored, and they fell away into obscurity. Maybe now #BernieorBust will slip into the same obscurity and the internet extremists and conspiracy theorists will prove to be as tiny as some hope they are. But these demands from the Bernie camp that people who want a Democrat to win the election have to grovel and beg them for forgiveness even though many of them have shown zero respect for moderate Democrats or the party at large, they can screw off in my opinion. Hentropy (talk) 17:34, 20 May 2016 (UTC)

Hentropy, would you be kind enough to fill me in on Stein's anti-science views? We don't have an article on her, so I'm not up to date. I am considering endorsing her if Hillary gets the nomination, as well as voting for her. What about her science views is bad enough to negate all of the other issues she's so great on? Pbfreespace3 (talk) 01:52, 20 May 2016 (UTC)

She panders to those who are against nuclear energy and those who are against vaccines and for homeopathy; keep in mind she is a medical doctor. Green parties, in general, tend to be against GMOs.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 02:26, 20 May 2016 (UTC) 02:26, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
One of the reasons I'm so pissed at Gerhard Gaspromowič Schröder :@ --Kugelschreiber (talk) (mail) (block) 02:41, 20 May 2016 (UTC) 02:41, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
As Owlman pointed out, the Greens tend to pander pretty heavily to the altmed/New Age/hard green crowd. I've generally written the Greens off since they jumped the rails and nominated a fucking 9/11 Truther in 2008. Stein is a significant step up from McKinney, but third parties in general tend to be crank magnets, throwing bones to woo-pushers and true blue conspiracy theorists to inflate their ranks. I'd say I only agree with the Greens a little bit more than I agree with the Libertarians, which isn't saying much. I figure if I'm going to "throw a vote away" with a third party, it might as well be some write-in or something I don't have to compromise so much on. Hentropy (talk) 02:56, 20 May 2016 (UTC)
As if one of the presumptive nominees of a major parties wasn't one of the most famous supporters of a certain recent conspiracy theory. The US is off the rails, careening straight for a massive pileup of bullshit. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 15:38, 20 May 2016 (UTC)

In which I promote a site where Cracked Commenters fled to[edit]

http://thecommentsection.org/ Heads up Hentropy. It's a giant forum site apparently headed by Tesseracts.— Unsigned, by: 108.41.190.141 / talk / contribs

Whats a cracked I would never comment on there it has far too many knuckleheads also who are you. Hentropy (talk) 03:52, 23 May 2016 (UTC)
Cracked.com was once said to have a rather good comment section, sometimes better than the articles (even here in this wiki), but you barely notice it, with all the usual gamergaters and "Oh noes, the SJWs!" persons everywhere.
I guess he means that the comments there are like Cracked ones in earlier articles. Catoblepas (talk) 11:45, 28 May 2016 (UTC)

Dannel Malloy[edit]

As a Connecticut resident who regularly deals with a state agency facing especially severe budget cuts (DDS, the equivalent may be DMR depending on your state) and has a disability (mine is autism, Malloy's is extremely severe dyslexia and he uses audio transcripts to compensate), disability services is a microcosm of the larger issue. As a very brief summary that necessarily omits a lot of detail, Malloy has repeatedly talked about the need for greater disability services and made a huge show of passing an autism waiver for Medicaid a few years ago. Problem is, the waiver has space for all of 70 people in a place with 3 million+ people and one of the highest cost of living in the world, and that's where his "overhaul" stopped dead. The budget would completely gut not just DDS but all of the agencies who work with them, and without delving too much into the specifics (I can cite them as necessary) it saves the state an immense amount of money to have agencies running these facilities and simultaneously reduces the abuse and neglect rate. Having seen how DDS operates I admit it can sure be tempting to cut their funding (their core problem seems to be missing the forest for the trees, it's largely a direct result of their well intentioned but easily gamed Level of Need process), but actually following the money makes it clear that funding these agencies is a lot more efficient and results in better outcomes than the state government micromanaging it at every level. Instead, there's a token sop to autism that helps 70 people out of a few hundred thousand autistics with an IQ over 69. The union business I only know from afar, so I won't comment on that. I can't bring myself to hate him, as he did prove himself capable of not taking massive kickbacks a la John Rowland (who's still quite fresh in our minds, Malloy is only the 2nd governor since him), but seriously; it takes no more than a modicum of research to learn everything I've written here. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 05:21, 30 May 2016 (UTC)

Honestly, haven't even heard of him until I saw him mentioned on the Dem policy commission. I know that he boycotted my state, though, which I dislike but I understand that it was the only way to protest Pence's bigotry. I don't know enough about him to have any substantive opinion but I understand that he is currently cutting the public sector which hurts a lot of people.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 05:44, 30 May 2016 (UTC) 05:44, 30 May 2016 (UTC)
The overarching issue informed people have in CT isn't that he's cutting civil service budgets, which innand of itself most of us would appreciate because we pay insanely high taxes, but that he hasn't been smart about where to make said cuts. That's what I was trying and failing to say above in my remarkably verbose comment. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 23:57, 30 May 2016 (UTC)

Memorial Day[edit]

Well it is a bit late to post this but I compiled a list of anti-war articles for the day:

  • Criticisms of militarization:
Ending Their Wars - Jacobin
The long con of military decline: How the right uses the armed forces to lie about America - Salon
The Untold Story of Memorial Day: Former Slaves Honoring and Mourning the Dead - AlterNet
Obama’s Powerful Call to ‘Make War Less Likely and Cruelty Less Easily Accepted’ - The Nation
  • Personal accounts:
Memorial Day 2016 - Good Men Project (compilation)
We romanticize military service — until we see some combat and bury some friends - Foreign Policy (Block cookies)
Once Upon a Time, My Father Was a Soldier - Truthout
Nick Turse, From the Missing Archives of a Lost War - TomDispatch
  • Remembering war resistance:
When Soldiers Resist - Jacobin
Remembering Tomas Young - the Real News Network
Remembering Father Daniel Berrigan, a Prophet of Peace - Democracy Now!
From Attica to Assange, Attorney Michael Ratner Remembered as Social Justice Champion - Democracy Now!
  • Hiroshima & Nagasaki:
Art From The Ashes. Japanese Painters Summon Hope. - The Progressive

--Owlman (talk) (mail) 07:02, 31 May 2016 (UTC) 07:02, 31 May 2016 (UTC)

Yet Another Bernie Thing[edit]

I know it's not necessarily what Sanders supporters want to hear, but I have a hard time arguing with it even as a Devil's Advocate. I know genuine leftists really loved the idea of a socialist running for President and if nothing else he may have finally broken the taboo on that word, but by every objective measure his support has revolved around the themes of his campaign or a single-issue focus, like college. To me, while he does have a lot of the same leftist support candidates like Kucinich had (but moreso), his support has less to do with his specific policies and more to do with his themes and the fact that he's not Hillary Clinton. Hentropy (talk) 16:50, 3 June 2016 (UTC)

Which is a by itself, too.--Kugelschreiber (talk) (mail) (block) 16:53, 3 June 2016 (UTC) 16:53, 3 June 2016 (UTC)
Well Kucinish was more anti-war but I think people concentrated on universal health care and universal college. People also seemed to concentrate on his policies on banks but that would be it. No one really thought about his financial transaction tax or his push to create a prize system. People also didn't seem to talk about his belief that deportees should be paroled for illegal entry.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 04:36, 6 June 2016 (UTC) 04:36, 6 June 2016 (UTC)

Return of Lesser Evilism[edit]

I always enjoy Matt Taibbi's pieces. But for some reason, you have to load the page with Javascript disabled for the text to appear.

Javascript delendum est. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 16:49, 21 June 2016 (UTC)

Don't blame Javascript, it's innocent in all this, blame the web devs who make you enable it so they can show you ads/pester you before you get to your stuff. They'd find some way to block it out no matter what. Anyway, I usually like Taibbi's stuff as well, but this didn't seem to bring the same interesting insight or wit to it. The whole blathering on about "lesser of two evils" as if it ever went anywhere (I've heard that talk from cynics in every election, Presidential or no) and of course the reductionist and quasi-sexist/racist assumption that the 3 million+ people who voted for Clinton didn't do so because they thought Sanders was the greater of two evils himself. People only voted for her because DWS brainwashed them and smeared Sanders with vicious shadow attacks that no one can point to. Hentropy (talk) 22:14, 21 June 2016 (UTC)
I thought it was pretty good jab at the assumption that the status quo is unchanging and that people won't "get in line" if you don't budge.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 22:45, 21 June 2016 (UTC) 22:45, 21 June 2016 (UTC)
The Democrats are still pissed at Ralph Nader, apparently, and imagine that they were entitled to the votes of people who preferred him to Al Gore. When the election was held, it wasn't clear how bad Bush II was going to be; Bush I was at least as prepared for the job as HRC is right now. And after eight years of Clinton, with his trade deals, deregulation, and welfare cuts, it was reasonable to conclude that the Democrats were not much different from the Republicans and choose a 'none of the above' candidate. If ninety thousand Floridians decided not to vote for Al Gore, it was because Al Gore did not persuade them.

And I despise Javascript, because it is used to do things to my browser that I'd prefer not to happen. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 02:25, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Personally I agree that Democrats should stop scapegoating Nader for 2000, in the end he didn't actually win that much of the vote (compared to what third parties are slated to win this year). I'm generally sympathetic to people who want to vote for the candidate who is closest to their own ideologies. But Taibbi makes this same smug, liberaler-than-thou-so-better-than-thou assumption that the only reason people are voting for Clinton is because of electability or because it's "her turn" or various other BernieBro memes, rather than considering even for a second that people are voting for Clinton because they don't like Sanders' ideas or rhetoric as much. Many Democrats and normal people who don't live in left- or right-wing media/internet bubbles never saw either of the candidates as "evil", Obama enjoys a ~50% approval rating nationally. Democrats moved farther to the right for a reason, because the idea of raising middle class taxes by significant amounts to pay for more and more poor people and minorities while giving the middle class mediocre schools and services in return became quite unpopular for some strange reason. Many Democrats, particularly minorities and women not only fear that going back to those politics will ensure another Republican sweep and throw away the supreme court and much of the social progress made in the last 8 years, but also because that many may fundamentally disagree that it is the best way to move the country towards a fairer economic system. The smug and not insignificantly bigoted handwaving of these perspectives is amplified by an echo chamber that feeds the "they would just feel the Bern if they opened up their hearts to our socialist lord and savior!" narrative. It is little more than attempted erasure by a strangely paternalistic, mostly-white and mostly-young majority who has very little to lose in Trump/Neo-neocon government. Hentropy (talk) 03:28, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Cenk Uygur and Van Jones had a great discussion on the political revolution within in the American left and how that revolution ought to move forward under the next president. They discuss the Obama presidency and how the left let him get away with most of what Bush had pushed for; they also discuss why a grassroots movement would get more accomplished under Clinton rather than Trump.--Owlman (talk) (mail) 04:20, 22 June 2016 (UTC) 04:20, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Taibibi is an idiot. He ignores the mathematical constraints of the first-past-the-post, winner-takes-all American electoral system a) that ENSURES third parties are just vanity parties with no possibility to win and that b) it's always a choice of lesser evils due to the math. He ignores pragmatism and practicality for "ideals", which are nothing but fanaticism in gay bunting. He's too smart to be stupid enough to believe the drivel he wrote, so he must be doing it maliciously. --Castaigne2 (talk) 02:28, 22 June 2016 (UTC)