RationalWiki talk:What is going on in the blogosphere?/Archive7

From RationalWiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

This is an archive page, last updated 9 January 2016. Please do not make edits to this page.
Archives for this talk page: , (new)(back)

rational vs superficial[edit]

Forgive me if I am being a bit dense, but when has rationality ever been about over coming superficiality? Can you not be rational and superficial? AMassiveGay (talk) 22:18, 17 November 2014 (UTC)

Wouldn't that be like a stereotype that happens to correspond to actual trends? Like being afraid of a particular ethnicity because a slightly larger small proportion of their group commit crimes. There's some rationality to it, but it's pretty superficial and, when talking about specific people, just wrong.
I think rationality is more useful for overcoming lazy thinking which is a subset of superficiality, a subset that occasionally includes me. MarmotHead (talk) 22:24, 17 November 2014 (UTC)
Superficiality is authoritarian. Eventually, you can't talk to people who have been ideologized, and who inhabit a closed world in which every problem has its simple and obvious solution in the invocation of the correct slogan. Recognize this and save yourself the trouble. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 04:56, 28 November 2014 (UTC)
I think that it's not a direct and absolutely contrary thing, but taking a superficial approach to just about anything is typically a good way to fail to understand that thing. It isn't always the case, and, in addition, you could be right for the wrong reasons, but focusing on the front-facing superficial elements isn't rational in-and-of itself. Ikanreed (talk) 05:11, 28 November 2014 (UTC)
True, true. Once you start thinking properly, reading and understanding good research, and knowing the golden standards of critical thinking, the superficiality gets replaced by an informed mind. Also, bringing up common sense, which is sometimes the excuse for superficial beliefs , a lot of science confirms what we call common sense, but it explains it so much better. And then we have science that disconfirms common sense. LEFTYGREENMARIO 19:00, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

Racist Scientist[edit]

I'm a bit confused. Is he actively going around and making racist comments, or did somebody have to probe him in an interview to get him to reveal his thoughts? If it's the former, then I would certainly understand and even support a harsh backlash, but if someone asked his opinion and he said it and that was it, then he's not really hurting anyone, he's just an old man from a different era whose simply deluded in one respect. Like I said though it depends on which of the two scenarios is the case. Does anyone know?TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 01:22, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

From what I understand it was a quite a number. You can't force companies to hire him if they don't like what he has said in 1 interview, 50 interviews, or is shouting it from a bullhorn in front of the building. I can understand it if he wished to do research, as these ingrained stereotypes are not letting him approach genetic research with any sort of open mind, as well as making statements about scientific findings that didn't exist. EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 01:36, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
He's spouted blatant racism repeatedly and consistently in interviews, so people don't want to talk to him any more - David Gerard (talk) 10:57, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

Chart Brut[edit]

I've noticed this trend too: something about loosely linking two pieces of visual information with lines just really appeals to peoples' inner conspiracist. So the question is, should we have an article on it? If there's something fundamentally cranklike about that kind of communication, it falls dead center for being on-mission. Ikanreed (talk) 14:46, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

Red lines drawn in MS Paint? I only really noticed it big-time in Gamergate, though it's a thing that was done before that. Mayyyybe, if you think you have material for a good one - David Gerard (talk) 14:53, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Well that's a valid question. Gamergate definitely shoved that variety of crazy to the forefront. Is it an artifact of imageboards and reddit, and how they frame discussions around images? Will it persist in the future? I wish I could do some first-hand research at pro-crazy subreddits to see what I can find, but I can't. Ikanreed (talk) 15:02, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
If I'm understanding this correctly, it seems like a case of drawing connections where they don't exist. But it would make for a nice extension on the article on that, I'm assuming. If I'm misunderstanding this, then disregard my comment. ^^' LEFTYGREENMARIO 18:53, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Maybe not exclusively "where they don't exist" but stretching tenuous connection from tenuous connection to reach an implausible conclusion, and using a visual medium to try to push people to making those connections "themselves." Ikanreed (talk) 19:46, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Sounds like a kind variant of it. We have an article about the action of making vacuous connections, no? But yeah, this kind of crap deserves a spot somewhere here. LEFTYGREENMARIO 20:05, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Actually, this has been a common way of mapping out connections on 4chans for as long as I've gone there (~8 years). It is used to show thread progressions, connections between threads, and connections with outside events. There are a couple image macros of things like when the Nebraska Mall Shooter posted about it on 4chan the night before or when they found where a dead woman was buried. Identifying similar parts of different images is also quite common. I'm not sure why this is such a big deal now. AyzmoCheers 04:32, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
Gamergate popularised the format, looks like - David Gerard (talk) 10:43, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
"Connecting the dots" is both a popular activity and a popular phrase among conspiracists. This is just a visual manifestation of it.--ZooGuard (talk) 18:42, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
It's not merely about connecting dots, but ignoring closer dots that go against your preconceived position. SophieWilderModerator 18:55, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Well, yes, I didn't say that they do it well. ;) They just have a fetish for it.--ZooGuard (talk) 19:03, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Cracked on racism[edit]

The point of the Cracked article - as I read it - was not that "racists are still doing their thing" but that "we're all guilty of subconscious racism. In the first section they suggest playing an on-line game which exposes the racism one may not be aware of. The rest of the article is pretty much along the same lines.

This is important because I know that I like to think that I'm a pretty OK sort of guy with a modern, liberal, inclusive attitude but I'm self aware enough to know that I make massive - and invalid - assumptions based on skin tone. Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 09:43, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

I've taken a lot of psych classes, including several social psych classes. We've covered racism so many times I can't count. It is usually divided into implicit versus explicit. Implicit is that unconscious prejudice that makes you cross the street or lock your car doors. Explicit is when you refuse to hire someone. Explicit racism is higher, statistically, in people who self-identify as conservative. Implicit racism is higher in people who self-identify as liberal.
But you're right, we all have prejudiced views we're probably not aware of. I've also taken a lot of those psych tests. I'm part of the like 1% that associate guns with white men more than black men. However, I apparently do have a tendency towards gender roles (odd since I'm gay?). There are a lot of more disturbing ones like this that involve kids. They are more likely to pick a white doll, call the black doll ugly, etc. Really messed up stuff. Makes me sad sometimes. AyzmoCheers 14:38, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Right, and rather than just political identification causing racism or vice versa, there's an underlying set of personality traits that pushes some people towards both racism and conservatism to a greater degree than typical. These traits can crop up in more left-leaning political parties, but tend to be accompanied by social conservatism, regardless. Ikanreed (talk) 15:13, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
If there is an underlying personality dimension to racism, and these personality traits are (as every parent knows) mostly fixed at birth, to me this suggests that there is a certain level of racism that will just have to be lived with. Since race is a social construction, it might be possible to swap in some other factor as the division between Us and Them, and to persuade people to make their social divisions along different lines. (I understand the US military does well with this task. Soldiers in my unit belong to my tribe regardless of their skin color.) But since these authoritarian personalities need clearly defined lines of Us vs. Them, even if we persuade them that race is a granfalloon they'll just light on something else to make that the dividing line. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 04:53, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
It seems to me that swapping has already happened - race was swapped for nationality (a somewhat malleable division) in most discrimination. With racism you'd have blacks go to blacks lobby at an airport, and with nationalism you have foreigners (most aren't even coming into the country, they got a connecting flight) go into a special room where they sit for hours missing their flights, plaintively asking in broken English if the airline would let them fly on the next flight (which may be the next day). Then there's 'they took our jerbs' thing. Basically some % of people want politicians to be good guys who do the right thing because they care for the needs of human beings, and a similar % of people have this infantile fantasy of having an awesome psycho vampire father figure that would love you and care for you at the expense of everyone else. So the politicians who don't give a * about the needs of the voters instead fill this shoe with 'expense of everyone else' part. Dmytry (talk) 05:40, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Be careful, Smerdis, arguments to biology are never quite so clear cut. Having, say, a demonstrable genetic predilection to violence wouldn't justify murder, and given that culture influences authoritarian beliefs to a great deal, just letting it go isn't necessarily a healthy approach. We have to accept that there will be neo-nazis. We don't have to accept neo-nazism. Genetic determinism and faulty conclusions coming from it are going to be a big thing in the next few decades, and I wouldn't want to end up on the side that judges too quickly. And besides, authoritarian follower traits specifically haven't been scientifically demonstrated to be heritable. Ikanreed (talk) 23:34, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
If we're dealing with a set of personality traits that a relatively constant percentage of the population will have -- however that comes about -- you can either find some kind of role for these people in your society, or you can decide that they have none. - Smerdis of Tlön, for the defense. 06:19, 14 December 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, that's true, but if you read Altemeyer's full paper, he actually talks about what does predict authoritarian personalities, from what he's studied. How children are raised is a big factor. If the personality type is harmful(and I allege it is), there may be social intervention that reduces its prevalence. Ikanreed (talk) 15:29, 15 December 2014 (UTC)

Lesswrong and Harpers[edit]

Perhaps someone could explain this whole hing to real humans?? :puz:--Aloysius the Gaul (talk) 22:27, 13 December 2014 (UTC)

The Sound of Sodomy[edit]

This is why classic musicals shouldn't get gritty reboots. --User: PsychoGecko 21:55, 7 January 2015 (UTC)

how does this sound vary from that of ... well anything else ? I dont think I want to know, and would little kids even care ? never mind dinner time ! Hamster (talk) 23:56, 7 January 2015 (UTC)
I'm gonna just leave these here. Play both simultaneously. ωεαşεζøίɗWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 01:36, 8 January 2015 (UTC)
Should children be exposed to the sounds of sodomy? Well, I've never particularly disliked *band you don't like here*. (Agrajag (talk) 01:58, 8 January 2015 (UTC))
I'd have thought the sound of sodomy would be more like
. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 23:11, 8 January 2015 (UTC)
As someone from the South, I can confirm it's more like,
-User:PsychoGecko 00:02, 9 January 2015 (UTC)
I am yet find anyone who squeals like a pig, nor in deed made me squeal like pig, and I am most experienced and good at the things I do. Haven't been to the south though. AMassiveGay (talk) 00:14, 9 January 2015 (UTC)

Discovery Channel[edit]

Read on Facebook: "Hitler documentaries will be moved to ESPN. (Entertainment and Sports Programs and Nazis!) Sports will join Wrestling on SyFy. Science fiction programming will merge with Lifetime which will become the Lyfetyme network. (Mecha-Lucci vs Kristi McNado!!) BBC America will begin mashups of Dr Who and Honey Boo Boo, (yes... Dr Boo Who!) FOXNews will continue to air racists spouting conspiracy theories." - some guy named Michael Styborski. --Gulik (talk) 06:18, 11 January 2015 (UTC)

Complimentary Matters[edit]

I've read over the compliment agreement BuzzFeed article... and I think I might be missing something here. If someone tells a guy "Dude, you're so handsome/suave/swole/etc." and he responds with "Yeah, I totally am" or "I know, right?", doesn't that also make him appear completely full of himself? Granted, it is to a lesser extent with men than with women because of the whole all-attractive-women-are-self-absorbed stereotype, which is bad, but I'm not sure that automatically leads to "men believe only THEY can hand out the title of 'pretty'".

There's also the matter of how it's worded. (I mean, really. Who responds to a compliment with just 'yes'? "Heard you managed to finish the marathon in record time! Good job out there!" "Yes."). Agreeing with a compliment is one thing, but there's kind of a difference between, say, "I try to be!", "Thanks, I know!" and "Yep." Can someone clarify if I'm missing something? Noir LeSable (talk) 04:39, 16 January 2015 (UTC)

Well, it's a rather silly social expectation for people to pretend to think less of themselves than they actually do. Also, the idea that someone hitting on you is a "compliment" & something you should thank them for is ridiculous. To me, a guy saying "wow baby, u hot, i bet u look naked" looks more completely full of himself than the girl responding "yeah that's right". WeaseloidWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 08:44, 16 January 2015 (UTC)
I'd say it's more of a matter of humbleness being considered a virtue. I did totally miss that all these examples were pretty much guys just hitting on women though, so you do have an excellent point (Whiiiiich is what I missed. Don't mind me; I don't have much of a romantic life to speak of, so cues like this fly over my head sometimes). Thanks. Noir LeSable (talk) 16:34, 16 January 2015 (UTC)
Some of the girls' answers might look oddly short or overconfident, but not to the point where it'd explain/justify all the guys going "Oh, what I said earlier was totally a lie. I don't think you're awesome/sexy/hot at all." Really, some people... >.> (talk) 16:47, 16 January 2015 (UTC)
I think at least some of the responses to accepting the compliments were teasing honestly.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 20:27, 16 January 2015 (UTC)
If you say "aw, thanks" or "thanks, you too" when someone compliments you, then that's fine. Pretty much anything other than that is self-absorbed, I don't care who's saying it. This whole thing seems overblown and frankly pretty silly. People just want something to be outraged over so that they can feel progressive without having to actually do anything. The scale and number of the implications that the author of the Buzzfeed article seems to think that this has is staggering. Though it should be said that this kind of thing is kind of common - people get outraged over some petty, inconsequential bs and say that it represents a much larger problem so that they don't have to feel bad about not normally giving a shit about said much larger problem.(Agrajag (talk) 23:59, 17 January 2015 (UTC))

Re: A week in the life...[edit]

So, I understand that Twitter is a cesspool, but how can some asshat tweet "RETWEET ME OR ELSE I WILL BOMB YOUR HOUSE AT NIGHT" and not get his account kickbanned for abuse? Cosmikdebris (talk) 23:52, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

They did. @NeoDanger777, as well as a number of the other death/rape threat tweet accounts, are pinging up "This account has been suspended" pages when I try to access them. Not entirely sure whether or not it was due in part to the callout in the post she made.
Bleh. One of the things I dislike about the internet is how cheap and easy it makes anonymous threats. I mean, FFS, I consider myself a pretty mild person, and I've gotten a death threat in the past for saying that I prefer using a typewriter for writing (Guy thought I was a hipster because of this, and apparently really hated hipsters). Noir LeSable (talk)
I've long decided hipsters, by and large, aren't nearly as bad people as people who hate hipsters. Ikanreed (talk) 19:02, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
We should write an article about hipsters with a subsection called "people who hate hipsters". ShabiDOO 08:51, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for that. The account wasn't booted when I wrote the above comment, so I assume it was suspended after being outed on the femfreq blog. Cosmikdebris (talk) 19:23, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
It's not like said asshat won't create a new account as soon as he's banned, though. If it wasn't a sockpuppet account to begin with. (talk) 19:13, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
When I checked last evening, @NeoDanger777 had been quite active for at least a few months, so it appears he/she/it was not a sock. Cosmikdebris (talk) 19:23, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
It's almost more disturbing when you realize the awful, terrible people, who fail at basic decency are mostly just regular people going about their lives. It feels better to imagine them the 2% of people whose personality makes them tend to choose trolling as a way of engaging online, going everywhere, doing everything. Ikanreed (talk) 19:28, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Wesley Morganston[edit]

So someone put in the blogs section something that belongs in the clogs. Essentially a neoreactionary commentary making fun of "the Cathedral" - a conspiratorial catch-all term for everything modern, liberal, or even conservative that disagrees with their worldview - for using demonstrations and actual humanity to demand justice. It's basically one big fat "no u" while insisting that "modern" ways of life are vacuous. And then there's a section insisting that there's no such thing as secularism, by pointing out times when government and religion were intermingled like eggs in an omelet.

And the only reason I haven't snipped it is because you dumbasses keep upvoting it and I want to see how much critical examination of things you actually do. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs

I notice it started at +10 and is now at +4. Well done, you put it in and got it Internet points, that'll definitely bring about the revolution - David Gerard (talk) 08:38, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
Um, the link was added by another BoN.
As for "you dumbasses", the people who visit and vote on these pages are not necessarily the same as those who edit the wiki. There seems to be a lot of people who vote on links without reading them.--ZooGuard (talk) 11:11, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
Neoreactionary/LessWrong Twitter has been circulating the link going "OH WOW NYDWRACU'S IN RW" like we're the big time - David Gerard (talk) 15:17, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
Honestly, I just ignored it because "the problem with religion" is one of those complicated topics that I don't expect an article by that name to properly address in the first place. Ikanreed (talk) 15:36, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
Well, RW knows who they are and said critical things...and they nothing better to do. There's only so many times you can heat up a cheese dip, watch weird youtube videos, or write senseless 30 page screeds. -EmeraldCityWanderer (talk) 17:49, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
I didn't upvote it because I recognized the source, but I figure Nydwracu's words speak for themselves. I saw nothing particularly offensive there either, then again I'm not sensitive to that sort of thing either. The NR idea of the Cathedral is a bit off, but also interesting. People of all political persuasions tend to place various ideas on pedestals and react to challenges to these ideas badly. At least Nydracu's writing is a bit easier to take than Moldbug's. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 20:51, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
Today I was reminded of Moldbug's ridiculous piece on Bitcoin. (My response.) That's him being relatively terse and direct, by the way - David Gerard (talk) 21:52, 5 February 2015 (UTC)

Ok. I am the person who added Nort's post to this because it's actually very good, thoughtful, and contrary to what you people might assume, not NRx. But now I'm interested. Do you people actually have a proper argument for why you don't like it, or what? (talk) 22:35, 5 February 2015 (UTC)

What? The word 'Cathedral' appears once on the entire first page. Also it's almost certainly not kantbot, but whoever it is doesn't understand that different words have different meanings to different audiences so I hope he stops doing that. --Oldenglishword (talk) 07:11, 6 February 2015 (UTC)
Indeed, Wes. But these people are well aware of exosemantics. (talk) 07:46, 6 February 2015 (UTC)
"exosemantics" being a word he's most of the top 10 Google hits for. 'Cos we really needed a neologism for "connotations". I blame LessWrong's encouragement of gratuitous neologism, as always - David Gerard (talk) 11:43, 6 February 2015 (UTC)
Just how uneducated they must be not to know words like this in their own native language... geez. Dmytry (talk) 21:50, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
Apparently Wesley denies he's NRx but none of his friends believe it. (indulgent twitter thread). Someone also said Mr. 74 is @kantbot2000, though I can't find that tweet now - David Gerard (talk) 22:47, 5 February 2015 (UTC)
For more proof, check out this twitter conversation. Does he ever betray a NRx viewpoint (pro-tech, singularitarian) (talk) 02:42, 6 February 2015 (UTC)
*psst* that conversation makes no point to anyone not already steeped in the NRx memetic swamp - David Gerard (talk) 11:44, 6 February 2015 (UTC)
More proof on his writings for Theden. (talk) 03:40, 6 February 2015 (UTC)

From "Blogs run by RationalWikians" down[edit]

Should this stuff be merged with RationalWiki:Blogroll, or does it serve some special purpose here? Fuzzy. Cat. Potato! (talk/stalk) 23:56, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

*cough* Fuzzy. Cat. Potato! (talk/stalk) 18:21, 16 February 2015 (UTC)

What's the skeptic stance on 'pedo'-detectors?[edit]

The cracked article talks about the studies purportedly showing that up to 50% of men are pedophiles, using some ridiculous looking penis movement recorder... what is the skeptic stance on that sort of stuff? It seems completely nuts (pun intended) - surely some pedos will not get a boner, and non-pedos may move around uncomfortably, mechanically causing false positives. Dmytry (talk) 18:23, 15 February 2015 (UTC)

I have a vague memory of someone mentioning "tumescence detectors", but I'm not sure if it was here or somewhere else. Check out User:Nebuchadnezzar, he's the psychology and neuroscience guy here, though he's not very active lately.--ZooGuard (talk) 18:32, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
Sorry, I was misremembering the term - the penile plethysmograph is mentioned in Pseudopsychology and has an entry on the Skeptic's Dictionary, but the Pedophilia article reports results from plethysmography studies without caveats. That article deserves attention, BTW, as its current incarnation is mostly the creation of User:Landmartian, who is a bit odd.--ZooGuard (talk) 18:40, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
"It has even been given to children as young as 10 who had abused other children. The latter was done in Phoenix, Arizona..." WTF?! Seriously, WTF?! Dmytry (talk) 21:47, 15 February 2015 (UTC)
I don't know, "has predictive value" is a pretty big deal for me as far as the pseudoscience divide goes: Discriminative and Predictive Validity of the Penile Plethysmograph in Adolescent Sex Offenders. The reasoning for calling it pseudoscience on both rationalwiki and skepdic was its deep ties to both lie detection and aversion therapy. The big risk is that people treat it like a smoking gun, when it's just a moderate correlation. Ikanreed (talk) 20:42, 16 February 2015 (UTC)
Well, a lot of things correlate with general re-offending. Age, income, IQ, race... nobody's calling a skin albedo measurement device a detector of criminality yet it would actually work pretty well in the US. Dmytry (talk) 23:44, 17 February 2015 (UTC)
Except that's exactly what I'm saying. That it has meaning, but using it as a tool for calling someone a criminal is dumb. The risk isn't that it's pseudoscience, it's that it's misapplied science. Ikanreed (talk) 23:54, 17 February 2015 (UTC)
Ahh. No, my WTF was about the fact that using this test on a 10yo itself constitutes sexual abuse of a minor. As for pseudoscience, Cracked's claim should qualify, no? You can't use a weak correlate to establish a % of paedophiles among men. It trivializes paedophilia. Dmytry (talk) 04:45, 18 February 2015 (UTC)

Is it me or Cracked's been sort of good lately?[edit]

The trans man article warmed me up to the site again. It was even gasp funny!

Only complaint about the article was the "Straight men, on the other hand, also won't touch you because you're too assertive, with probably a fair amount of homophobia thrown in for good measure" bit. That's probably because straight dudes aren't into dudes. |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg Now I'm not tense anymore, I'm just miserable. Hooray! 19:14, 16 February 2015 (UTC)

That's from the interviews series, which is just amazingly good in general - David Gerard (talk) 20:15, 16 February 2015 (UTC)
Some trans men can still look kinda female according to societal standards, so it's not physically impossible for a guy who identifies as straight to have a relationship with a trans man. Not that it'd likely be a healthy relationship if it's founded on the straight guy not knowing/denying the other's gender identity. (talk) 20:30, 16 February 2015 (UTC)
Since having a little girl what I'm noticing is that everyone's gender steamrolled from their very birth, starting with pink vs any non-link colours (literally turning women into people of colour lol). The toys are gendered. Imagine if the toys were raced instead, as in, rappers and gangsters in the black kid isle, other toys in white and asian kid isle. Imagine that a black kid who's playing with technical legos or merely not being into rappers gets told he's not a real black kid at every point by the society and the well meaning people of all races, perhaps he's a white guy trapped in a black guy's body? The problems that trans people experience undoubtedly stem from this utterly extreme sexism. Dmytry (talk) 08:52, 18 February 2015 (UTC)
This'll probably be solved if gendered toys stop selling. But stuff like Max Steel, Transformers, TMNT, Barbie, Polly Pocket, and My Little Pony keeps making mad bank (admittedly, Max Steel is awesome). |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg Kyubey stares into your soul. /人◕‿‿◕人\\ 01:35, 19 February 2015 (UTC)
It's even worse with legos and everything else now than with barbies and transformers. You need to go look in a toy store. Not only are almost all toys sold in gender specific manner (more moving parts / more colours / more complex assembly in the boys section), they propagandise gender roles (all scientist and engineer characters in lego are male for example, girl sets have girls take care of the house and water flowers, etc etc). The toys relating to occupations are sorted into boy/girl toys, one could go over the average salaries of the occupations represented by said toys for a kick. Or count the moving parts as a proxy for educational value, or assembly steps. The toys that you think are gender neutral are in boy section. And while as a parent you could of course ignore all that, the kindergarten, school, friends, etc will not. Dmytry (talk) 02:44, 19 February 2015 (UTC)
It's tragic that Lego has actually taken steps backwards over the last few decades in that regard. There was a fuss recently that got a scientific women set released, and I understand that it's now going to become a regular part of the range rather than a limited edition set, but you look at Lego adverts from yesteryear and it's abundantly clear that some effort was taken to avoid any gender stereotyping. Somewhere along the line it was lost.Queexchthonic murmurings 10:56, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

Lesbians and doctor[edit]

In honesty, the child is probably better off not going to that doctor, as it appears they're an alt med pusher. "She took a holistic approach to treating children. She used natural oils and probiotics". Compro01 (talk) 19:59, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

While I don't know why the natural oils thing was even a consideration, I don't see how suggesting a holistic approach to treating an infection is evidence of "alt medicine pushing." The USA Today article is far too vague about the doctor's approach for anyone reading it to glean that they prefer alternative medicine to standard medicine. I think it's a bit rash to rush to conclusions about this physician's approach to medicine based on this single article from USA Today, whose journalistic integrity isn't exactly "blemish-free." Mondedge (talk) 20:20, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

That tumblr thingy with -20 points[edit]

Since it was added by that troll, and it's about as coherent as that troll, shouldn't it be removed? Narky SawtoothNarky.png (Nyar?~) 13:25, 23 February 2015 (UTC)

Nah, let's rub it in his face that his trolling has failed spectacularly. BicyclewheelModerator 14:37, 23 February 2015 (UTC)
Stuff tends not to get removed from WIGO unless it's really old or should be moved to a different WIGO - downvoting into oblivion is just fine - David Gerard (talk) 15:15, 23 February 2015 (UTC)
Downvoted it for your guys' pleasure. :) LEFTYGREENMARIO 07:44, 1 March 2015 (UTC)

That weak Guardian article on Militant atheism[edit]

The gist seems to be that militant atheists are largely liberal, and they think that all cultures will naturally evolve to their viewpoint. It seems like an insipid straw-man argument to me, especially considering that liberal atheists can retort that they don't expect all societies will adopt liberalism as a matter of course. — Unsigned, by: Hotwateramericano / talk / contribs

Not going to argue with that characterization. But I do think that at least for certain liberals, there is the expectation that liberalism will inevitably triumph. Its opponents stand in the way of Progress, and Progress is inevitable. (And so, standing in the way of Progress makes you a Villain.) Been this way since the days of the ancient Whigs. At any rate, I thought the editorial was not crazy enough for the clogs and fairly obviously missional. The author, [[wp:John Gray (philosopher)|John Gray]]Wikipedia, probably deserves an article. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 04:39, 4 March 2015 (UTC)

Davis Aurini and Jordan Owen have broken up[edit]

Is the skinny guy wearing the fedora ironically, have these losers "reclaimed" it from ridicule, a la lesbnians reclaiming the word "dyke," or does he actually think it makes him look cool? Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 03:38, 4 March 2015 (UTC)

Maybe he's reclaiming the fedora's ironic coolness. FüzzyCätPötätö (talk/stalk) 03:51, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
I thought the hat was actually the most amicable element in that picture. (talk) 07:22, 4 March 2015 (UTC)

That stupid hentai WIGO[edit]

Seriously? I could, if not in the interest of this site not being a pornostash, post 150,000 "sex-positive" hentai comics and images from just the sites listed in that article (I mean holy shit, Fakku has tons of good stuff, and that's one that was specifically pointed out in the thing). If I go to Tube8 and say "ugh, all the gay porn out there is just twinks being rammed up the ass, that's all there is" then yes, I would describe a thing that exists, but holy shit did I miss a lot of things and then go "UGH, IT'S ALL THERE IS" because that's all I was looking for. [Semi-anonymous rant mode OFF.] (talk) 10:02, 3 March 2015 (UTC)

Sturgeon's Law must surely apply to porn as much as anything else. I guess porn has greater scope for the worst of it to be damaging (depending on how it was made) or displaying the worst attributes of its target market, but I'll take hentai over Nuts any day. Queexchthonic murmurings 10:23, 3 March 2015 (UTC)
Very true. I was also disappointed the article made no mention of visual novels - most of which are erotic in nature and depict consenting adults. I'm not sure they're "sex-positive" in the most forthright, feminist sense - they sure have a lot of large breasts - but most of them don't focus on rape or other definitely immoral stuff. (There are of course some VNs that do, but they're much the minority.) Wehpudicabok [話] [変] [留] 06:16, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
Also no mention of otome games, although otome games are rarely explicit. |₹Λ¥$€₦₦ Red rose 02.svg I'm a survivor, keep on survivin' 13:18, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
I wouldn't really class visual novels as outright hentai, despite their occasional pornographic content. Plus whilst they certainly are a lot less rapey, the relationships in those tend to have a ruthless, coercive "be nice guy to get sex" sort of framing to them, as a result of the player input and premise. Not really all that sex positive either. 21:20 14 March 2015 (UTC) (talk) 21:25, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

GCPGrey's trifling video.[edit]

A video about a very strained and cliched metaphor about ideas and infectious diseases? Why can't he make videos about interesting topics again? — Unsigned, by: Hotwateramericano / talk / contribs 18:54, 10 March 2015

Er. It's a discussion of Richard Dawkins's theory of MemeticsWikipedia. Dawkins himself makes the disease analogy in The Selfish Gene and his essay Viruses of the Mind, among other works. And I thought it was quite interesting in how controversial or anger-inducing ideas self-propagate and form themselves around maddening "effigies" of the opposing side.
Honestly, I'm just surprised at how much it's being downvoted around here. I know better to judge the views of an entire website by a votebar that anyone and everyone can vote on, possibly more than once, but still. (Also please don't forget to sign your comments with "~~~~", thanks). Noir LeSable (talk) 19:26, 10 March 2015 (UTC)
I thought it was great, and hit colse to home. Never seen any of the guy's other stuff. Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 02:37, 11 March 2015 (UTC)
It was a reasonably good introduction to the concept of the meme, but the "meme" concept is just that: a strained metaphor. Even I think it takes biologizing too far, which should tell you something. - Smerdis of Tlön, If you burn with an inner fire, you are already damned. 03:07, 11 March 2015 (UTC)

People who are sick of activists' shit.[edit]

Seriously. Graduate students who literally spend 60 hours a week reading and writing about cutting-edge scholarship about things like gender and race attack someone who turned up for the cause and is willing to give time and effort for a common goal, but only has a GED and no idea what the fuck "gender performativity" or "social construction of race" mean or haven't learned that there are more than two possible pronouns for someone or that you shouldn't say "man up", thereby alienating a valuable ally. It happens, and it sucks. Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 17:17, 4 March 2015 (UTC)

I'm well aware. Being caustic helps exactly zero* sincere causes. But I still downvoted it because it seemed like exactly the sort of narrow-minded policing of language it denounced. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 17:23, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
Telling people that engaging in narrow-minded policing of language is itself narrow-minded policing of language. Gotcha. Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 17:38, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
It can be if all you do is say "Never call people out". If it's a gross simplification, it's a gross simplification, regardless of intent, no? ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 17:43, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
Except that's not what he said. "There are ways of calling people out that are compassionate and creative, and that recognize the whole individual instead of viewing them simply as representations of the systems from which they benefit. Paying attention to these other contexts will mean refusing to unleash all of our very real trauma onto the psyches of those we imagine represent the systems that oppress us. Given the nature of online social networks, call-outs are not going away any time soon. But reminding ourselves of what a call-out is meant to accomplish will go a long way toward creating the kinds of substantial, material changes in people’s behaviour – and in community dynamics – that we envision and need." Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 17:54, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
That's fair. I was overreaching. And I'm a firm believer in the extraordinary value of context. On the other hand, look at Smerdis' kinda hateful reply below to see how some people treat this kind of advice. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 18:01, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
(EC) Indeed. It's a bit of a shame, because I think this kind of attitude can not only alienate folks, but can also actually lessen the effectiveness of the activism in general. People like their in-groups and are more likely to listen to others within their in-group(s). Turning away someone looking to help just because they come from another background serves only to lock yourself out of that person's group and prevent your message from gaining traction. - Grant (talk) 18:06, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
To some extent I am inclined to agree with the author, though he does come off as a bit of tone troll in the article. The popular perception of those students who you mention (and who you may be aware are referred to, often derisively, as Social Justice Warriors) is that they lack any concept of proportionality. This is evident (at least to the denizens on the internet) by the fact that their responses to relatively minor actual (or perceived) social injustices tend to be regarded, even by other leftists (let alone centrists or conservatives), as being way out of proportion to the actual offense committed. Alsto003 (talk) 19:15, 4 March 2015 (UTC) Alex
Is anyone who criticizes tone a tone troll? (There's a discussion on that in the saloon, by the way.) (Agrajag (talk) 23:34, 4 March 2015 (UTC))
There's an extent to which that's true. In a totally sincere, rational world, an argument's merits do not vary at all based on the verbal framework that surrounds it. Demanding everyone's sincere concerns fall as secondary to expressing their concerns a certain way is pretty much all a tone troll does. Regardless, we don't live in a totally sincere, rational world, which entails being friendly with assholes who don't deserve it as the only way to alleviate a bit of their assholedom. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 15:55, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
It just seems to be that "tone troll" serves as an escape hatch - you use the term and people think "oh, that's a bad thing, isn't it? Ergo, this person must be wrong". I'm sure almost everyone here has seen it used in such a way - to dismiss as a troll anyone who criticizes you and shut down further discussion on the matter. (Not to say, of course, that tone/concern trolls don't exist, but the term seems to be far too broadly applied.) (Agrajag (talk) 02:27, 6 March 2015 (UTC))
Tone trolls are distinguished from those simply disagreeing by their lack of actual delineated counter-argument, and an insistence that the objectionable tone causes incorrectness. Very loosely, it can be thought of as a kind of ad hominimem. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 20:08, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

In which Smerdis shares zher opinion of activism[edit]

Activists will always need somebody to dehumanize, because that's what activism is. Activists are people who make enemies lists. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 17:26, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
Your essay sucks, dude. It's twisting the definition of something, then selectively cherrypicking people to fit that definition, then denouncing similar people as problematic, on the basis of that stretched definition. That's not good reasoning, and it's exactly the sort of enemy forming you claim to denounce. As a clue, you cite LessWrong for Christ's sake. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 17:31, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
I realized I just chastised you for the inanity of the essay, rather than refuting your central point, so let's do that too. Activism frequently and generally centers on approaching a goal. Anti-war activism doesn't demonize soldiers or politicians, for example. It just opposes military solutions to problems. You can find anti-war activists who are anti-(insert person) and make them out to be a demon, but it's neither central nor necessary to the activist approach. I find your accusation mentally lazy, your attitude ignorant of the way general human nature develops enemies(it's not just activists), and kind of insulting, even though I'm not myself much of an activist for anything. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 17:37, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
I was there, and actually starting to pay attention, during the wind-down of the Vietnam War. "Hey, hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today?"[1] It is at least historically false that "Anti-war activism doesn't demonize soldiers or politicians..." It may have been that the Vietnam War was a big enough deal to justify resort to activism, but again, activism needs an enemy with a subhuman face. But the call-out culture is simply a self-righteous brand of performance art. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 18:23, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
I've pointed out before that this is part of your issue; you continue to frame everything regarding activism, argument, etc., in terms of the late 1960s/early 1970s activism. It's very nice and historical, but does not necessarily apply to modern day activism. Frankly, your insistence that activism, feminism, and other facets of human nature haven't progressed or changed since before I was born doesn't hold up. You remind me of TERFs who insist that all feminism ended at 2nd Wave Dworkinism and hasn't moved since. --Castaigne (talk) 18:31, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
Human nature has progressed or changed? Really? Now, the kinds of activism being discussed in the blog in question get criticized for being sanctimonious, aggressive, disproportionate, fanatical, and oblivious to context. I'm skeptical that other kinds of activism are even possible. But even if there's some other kind of activism that's full of hugs and flowers, this is not it. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 20:59, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
The amount of disproportionate sanctimony and aggression in this post says more than enough about the relevance of "activism" to that equation. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 21:06, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
You keep confusing processes and procedures with people. I'm talking about activism and methods thereof, not human nature. The map is not the territory. --Castaigne (talk) 22:55, 4 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure I follow the point you're making here. You were the one who said that human nature had changed over the past thirty-odd years. I'm fairly sure it hasn't. I cheerfully admit that one of the dangers of anti-activist activism is becoming the enemy. Activism leads to an arms race. And people generally aren't even aware of their actual worst behaviors. They are so current and respectable. History only sees them in hindsight. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 03:16, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
No, I did not say that human nature has changed over the past 30-odd years. Activism and the processes thereof has changed over the past 30-odd years. Activism is not human nature, and no amount of you trying to conflate the two will make it so. --Castaigne (talk) 15:49, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
That isn't what you wrote; so it goes. I'm not sure how you'd go about quantifying this -- counting numbers of pressure groups or trying to make an algorithm that measures hostility in texts, maybe -- but it seems to me that the tide of moralistic aggression is unacceptably high and rising. We're in the middle of a great civil rights catastrophe -- people being segregated, shunned, and driven out into the cold, constantly facing signs that they're unwelcome -- one that's even elaborated its own form of "scientific racism", and people who haven't met me may be hard pressed to figure out what I'm talking about. How is present day activism less cruel or invasive than the forms it took some decades ago? I'm not seeing that. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 18:34, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure I follow you here. If we date the modern activist movement as something that started with abolitionism, was energized by the suffragettes and arguably enjoyed its best days in the last half of the 20th century with a variety of movements ranging from anti-colonialism (including apartheid), anti-racism movements in the Americas (civil rights, Black Power, Red Power), anti-war and anti-nuke activism, the women's liberation movement, the Stonewall moment and its legacy, and a host of others -- you characterise these as "cruel or invasive"? Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 18:46, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
Damn right they're cruel and invasive. All these angry loud activists have started to topple me off my privileged white male seat at the top of society. Marlow (talk) 18:58, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
Right in one. I see a lot of Smerdis' type in former hippies of the 1960s, specifically my wife's parents and the parents of a punk friend of mine. They promoted the Civil Rights Movements and marched and did their thing...and now that their views have gone from "relevant in the 1970s" to "wow, that's rather retrogressive by 2000s standards", they're all pissed off. They don't want to hear that they're no longer on the front edge of today. They got comfortable with their former activist stance and stopped moving. They especially don't want to realize that they're no different than my great-grandmother or grandmother, who are still confused why "Chinamen" isn't something polite to call all Asians or why "niglet" is a no-longer-socially-acceptable label.
When my wife/friend realized this about their parents, they were shocked. I think I'm just used to it; I was born to a family of reactionary authoritarians and I had nothing but contempt for the Great Hippie Generation of yesteryear to begin with. --Castaigne (talk) 19:35, 5 March 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I see it a bit different. It boils down to freedom versus authoritarianism. The side of the angels is the side that wants to dial back moralism, cut people slack, and open up new possibilities. The side of evil is the one that wants to impose value judgments, forbid what once was allowed, or impose new restraints. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 20:57, 5 March 2015 (UTC)

"Forbid what was once allowed." Do you mean slavery, lynching, denying the vote based on race and gender, imperial rule, and apartheid? Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 21:04, 5 March 2015 (UTC)
People who marched for civil rights but are no longer on the cutting edge of activism are as bad as actual, vicious, racists? (Agrajag (talk) 02:22, 6 March 2015 (UTC))
Neither slavery, nor lynching, nor any of those other strawmen have aught to do with increasing the scope of human freedom and loosening the grip of social control, cutting people slack, nor dialing back moralism. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 04:23, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
What? We're talking about activism, and so I bring up some of the big causes that activists have addressed, and those causes aren't relevant? And "slavery" has nothing to do with "increasing the scop of human freedom"? Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 04:37, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
But you would have been happy to allow those things to flourish rather than have people get all "angry" and "activist" and "moralist" about it. Go along to get along. At least, that's what I get from what you say. --Castaigne (talk) 15:21, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
With regard to slavery in the USA, I suspect that the military might have had more to do with its abolition than activists. The activists may well take credit for raising tensions to the point of secession and war. You could call that a success. And yes, I do think that society and everyone in it benefits from less anger and moralism, and greater tolerance and civil peace. Perhaps the worst thing about activists is their belief that they are entitled to your attention. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 17:22, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
I was thinking specifically of the role of grassroots activism in Great Britain in the ending of Atlantic slave trade. Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 17:29, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
I was thinking that integrated transport was coming along fine and Rosa Parks was just some hothead who wanted to have her own way. Doxys Midnight Runner (talk) 17:31, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
Secession and the Civil War actually had very little to do with the issue of slavery; I recommend you actually read up on the reasons for the conflict and update your thinking in that regard.
Despite your weaseling around the subject, let me be blunt: You would rather society suffer large-scale human rights abuses rather than have activists "stir things up", simply because you are afraid of conflict and the upsetting of the status quo. You choose the stagnant path of certainty and stability over change. I understand this; I really do. After all, I'm not liberal - I'm an authoritarian. I like order, hierarchy, certainty. However, certainty and stability and the status quo are not always the correct solutions to solve problems. --Castaigne (talk) 17:57, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
(EC)Let me explain what's wrong here: you're looking for arbitrarily inaccurate justifications to fit reality to your clearly flawed theory, rather than adjusting your theory for reality. Now, I'm not trying to jump on you too hard for doing that, because I do it too, but please, think for a moment about how you're dismissing large swaths of various kinds of work by great people like Fredrick Douglas and controversial people like John Brown, and outright dismissing them to put all the credit on "the military". Regardless of the extent to which the civil war settled the issue of slavery, it's pretty fucking clear that activists created the issue as something to settle. Both in matters of collective discussion, and in terms of the practicalities. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 17:35, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
If John Brown is an example of an activist, then his kind of activism is something that no society is ever going to tolerate, no matter how evil the society or how righteous the cause. (And slavery -- and specifically, the realization that the country was going to be populating territory ill suited for plantation slavery, and that the slave states would inevitably be politically outnumbered, a fate they saw coming to pass at Lincoln's election -- wasn't the cause of the civil war? Really?)

In many ways, I see this country looking rather like it did before the Civil War, two opposing world views, at least one of which is in a death spiral of extremism. The activities of the anti-abortion cranks, the tea partiers, and the creationists are also activism. Activism is what's wrong with the Republican primaries, and thus with the Republican party generally. Activism is not always for a worthy cause. More importantly, the problems with activism are mostly indifferent to the nature of the cause. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 03:11, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
Like I said, I was thinking about British abolitionists and their activism to end the Atlantic trade, not the Civil War. Peace. AgingHippie (talk) 03:22, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
Are you talking about people and things like William Wilberforce, John Newton, Amazing Grace, that sort of thing? I don't know a whole lot about the politics of the period, but I saw a Christian biopic about Wilberforce some years ago that suggested that for all the good he did, he was an insufferable prick. Didn't he also found a "Society for the Suppression of Vice"? He had the printer of Paine's Age of Reason jailed. There's something wrong in the head about that kind of busybody. You wouldn't want him as a neighbor. - Smerdis of Tlön, A ⇒ ¬A. 04:51, 7 March 2015 (UTC)
Belatedly: I can understand the desire to have people be less judgmental and more accepting of each other; but I'm also deeply suspicious of anyone who tries to insist on that as an ideology, or to universally denounce "activists" or "moralists" or the like. Taking that position as a hard line (and denouncing people for violating it) is, obviously, itself an action of a judgmental activist, so I find it really hard to accept that anyone who takes that position is being entirely honest (either with others or with themselves; they might actually believe what they say, but their positions and actions are incoherent.) If you want to tell others that they should be more accepting even when it comes to things that deeply offend them (like racism or sexism or ignorance), you have to be willing to start with that yourself; you need to show your willingness to listen to them and recognize what's good about their positions and to lead by example rather than by aggressively decrying the people you feel cross the lines you've drawn in your head. If you're loud, aggressive, and in-your-face with a shut up about racism and sexism! message, then it's reasonable for others to conclude that your position is that racism and sexism aren't a big deal (and that you're defending them, specifically), even if you claim that you're just objecting to their tone; since your actions (in showing a willingness to draw lines in the sand about how people should talk and what they should say, and then denounce people for crossing them) say that you have no problem with their tone, only with their message. It's obvious that Smerdis, above, has very strong feelings about what it should be acceptable for people to say and how it should be acceptable for them to say it; but this sort of puts the lie to any claim that their position is actually based around a sincere love for intellectual freedom. (I am not necessarily accusing Smerdis of deliberately being disingenuous; I think it's easy to fall into the intellectual trap of thinking "my preferences, moral judgments, and culture are normal and natural, and the way I assert them is a neutral position, stating simple moral fact that infringes on nobody's liberty; other people's are strange and political and foreign and wrong, and people infringe on my liberty by asserting these strange new moral positions." But this is an intellectually incoherent position to take.) --Aquillion (talk) 03:30, 2 April 2015 (UTC)

Way late followup[edit]

science doesn't support the notion that activism is a mentally disengaged emotional activity. ikanreed You probably didn't deserve that 19:14, 11 March 2015 (UTC)

My response to that "Atheist Ireland" thing[edit]

Oh, no! PZ Myers doesn't like Fred Phelps! And all this started because Michael Nugent asked multiple questions and received a response that he felt didn't answer all of them, forcing him to guess what Myers was referring to. Well, you know, except for the part where Myers used more than half of the words from the question he was responding to in the opening paragraph. Narky SawtoothNarky.png (Nyar?~) 12:57, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

Unfortunately, it was accurate for a few of Myers's "wah wah my pet interest" moments. Though, "insensitive" and "hateful" are pretty different. Narky SawtoothNarky.png (Nyar?~) 13:03, 8 April 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, I generally don't like PZ Meyers, but I find most of the stuff they list under "Some examples of his [insert adjectives with negative connotations here] rhetoric" as either harmless or things Meyers is totally right about. They would've been better off not listing all the "Oh noes, he's rude and doesn't like these people" examples. (talk) 13:12, 8 April 2015 (UTC)
Myers has told movement atheism to fuck off repeatedly, for the reasons he raises - David Gerard (talk) 13:54, 8 April 2015 (UTC)
It's good to know that "Atheist Ireland" supports the black, libertarian equivalent of Pamela Geller. Makes me wonder who funds them. --Castaigne (talk) 14:11, 8 April 2015 (UTC)
Just whiny idiots. The response article with links to what Myers actually said is most edifying - David Gerard (talk) 16:45, 8 April 2015 (UTC)
Angry polemicist attracts angry polemic. Film at 11. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 19:12, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

Louisiana Shooter Motive[edit]

Maybe since it's a delicate subject they don't want to jump to conclusions and announce that misogynistic terrorists are targeting feminists before they have completed the investigation. From the information given it looks pretty clear cut, but they probably want to be 100% sure of the nature of the crime before they give the media reason to sensationalize it. Besides, the superintendent's quote didn't indicate whether this was immediately after the event or after the facts about the murderer were discovered, so he might not have known all the details listed in the article when he said those words.TheriziπosaurusG (talk) 17:35, 26 July 2015 (UTC)

Nah, they just don't want to confront uncomfortable topics, since according to conservatives, there is absolutely nothing wrong with gender relations as they stand, and anyone who says otherwise secretly hates men. ConfusedLiberal (talk) 17:45, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, why wait until the people with access to all the information make a statement when we can run around like chickens with our heads cut off? Seriously, though, it doesn't actually make a huge difference to just wait until the people with a lot more information than you can finish their investigation. Yeah, there's probably some connection, it doesn't mean you can't let people finish actually examining all the evidence before making grand pronouncements. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 03:51, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
That "tone down" was stupid. Both sides LOVE to milk tragedies, no exceptions.--Arisboch (talk) 11:18, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
Didn't want to make it about at, but since you mention it; here. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 13:32, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
Oh comon, we can't get another social media campaign with that attitude! -Krashlia

Chris Ladd on the European model[edit]

Probably goes without saying that an opinion piece from a Republican attempting to explain why Nordic-style social democracy is not feasible in the USA will not win fans here. The rebuttal probably begins with saying that a "volatile" economy based on "creative destruction" is not something obviously desirable. Worse -- from my perspective -- it is profoundly anti-conservative. Failure to get this is one of the reasons why the American right wing is no longer conservative. And it begs the question, why the hell are we paying taxes to defend Europe rather than building our own society here at home?

Still, it's not obvious nonsense, and seems reasonably reality-based and open minded. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 02:27, 7 August 2015 (UTC)

Mr. Ladd has explained in the past that he's more of a conservative in the Burkean tradition (no relation to User:Burkean), which means that he is all about the protection of key social institutions from the inherent trend in market capitalism towards commodifying everything. So your statement that creative destruction is "profoundly anti-conservative" would be something he agrees with.
You know, being a longtime follower of his, I am beginning to wonder if I should change my username. I seem to get along quite well with center-right moderates like GOPlifer and George Pataki, with the exception that I am very liberal on social issues whereas those guys are more aloof. I am also more pro-labor. Then again, the "confused" part of my name still says it all; my positions on issues are muddled. I LIKE to think I'm center-left, but my support of this blog is making me question it. ConfusedLiberal (talk) 03:47, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
Screw it, I went for it. Blitz (talk) 03:57, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
The thing is that by today's standards Ladd is outright centrist (as in a smart centrist not a VSP). Because of how far to the right our political spectrum has become Ladd is, in terms of policy, not much different from liberals he just comes at it from a different direction (i.e. a progressive conservative one). It's worth nothing that this is where the GOP (or at least a strong faction of it) use to be under people like Teddy Roosevelt and Eisenhower but today the poor guy (like TR and Ike) is in many ways to the left of a majority of Democrats. ClothCoat (talk) 05:03, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
Eh, "liberal" isn't a particlarly clear political term either way. In much of Europe, identifying as a liberal would neatly put you on the right-wing side of the political spectrum. If you're all about "freedom", as the term originally implied, then you should really be a political pluralist, since freedom is all about having various different options available, no? (talk) 06:30, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
I think it's intuitively obvious that real centrist freedom is whatever agrees with me - David Gerard (talk) 08:26, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
That's the opposite of what I'm talking about, though. Political pluralism would entail also putting up with political positions you don't particularly agree with. I also find the negative connotation "centrist" automatically seems to carry around here a bit eyebrow-raisy. (talk) 14:08, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, an American centrist would be fairly right wing to most Europeans. Equally a Eupean right winger (at least one with a chance of being a member of an elected government) would be at least socialist to a Murcan. Prolly why the eyebrows are raised, no? Scream!! (talk) 15:43, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
I suppose that 'centrist' is one of those labels whose meaning depends on local context. In the US context, a Republican centrist will be a breath of fresh air. - Smerdis of Tlön, LOAD "*", 8, 1. 16:29, 7 August 2015 (UTC)
An article full of babble. When Americans want the same kind of mixed system that every single other developed country in the world has...then they will have it. It's not any more difficult than this. They could have it tomorrow if they really wanted it. ShabiDOO 10:12, 8 August 2015 (UTC)

The voting machines[edit]

I'm banking on gerrymandering. Narky SawtoothNarky.png (Nyar?~) 22:17, 9 August 2015 (UTC)

It's funny how an AG who speaks so passionately about "protecting election integrity" is trying to avoid an audit of the voting machines that might have skewed the election in Brownback's favor. Oh that's right, by protecting elections they mean protecting them from non-teapublican voters. Blitz (Complaints Box) 08:46, 10 August 2015 (UTC)

Uber and Ride Sharing[edit]

I wasn't even sure what that article was about until a few paragraphs in. I can agree with thesis that "disruption isn't always good all the time" but people don't like Uber simply because it's disruptive (though I guess it's not that hard to find idiots who would take that absolutist a stance on disruption), people like it because it's shaking up an industry that needed to be shaken up a long time ago. Taxi companies are state-sponsored monopolistic cartels in most cities with notoriously low standards of service, and the system allows for no competition to take place. Their tech being behind the times is the least of people's worries. Liberals shouldn't feel obligated to prop up outdated and corrupt systems just to get pro-labor cred. This system would never change if it weren't for something like Uber to take hold. Also, don't pretend it's a class thing, poor people don't use taxis. If someone made "UberHealth", an app that allowed people to get decent healthcare at an affordable price by evading the Byzantine healthcare laws, liberals wouldn't be calling that "piracy", they'd be building statues to the person who came up with it. Hentropy (talk) 21:29, 13 August 2015 (UTC)

Replacing one monopoly (a semi-private government cartel) with another monopoly (a highly aggressive economic killer shark) is not shaking up anything. It's replacing an inefficient bad thing with an unregulated bad thing transferring money from government coffers and drivers pockets to a giant predatory company and drivers pockets. Regulate it and introduce actual competition and your argument might stand on the slightest of foundations. (talk) 19:19, 15 August 2015 (UTC)
I never suggested they shouldn't be regulated, only that it is not a black-and-white choice between the two. The fact is, the taxi system was never going to change unless something came along and forced it to change, and chances are that something wasn't going to be an ideal and problem-free alternative. Corrupt institutions won't change because you ask nicely, there's been numerous attempts to introduce competition into the taxi market "the right way" and they all get crushed by the powerful taxi companies. I'm not suggesting Uber is some kind of corporate Black Lives Matter or something, only that this was inevitable and pretending like opposing Uber is some kind of progressive or pro-labor position ignores the root of the problem and conflict. Hentropy (talk) 04:50, 16 August 2015 (UTC)
What the hell is this argument? Okay so there are problems with UBER, but hey, noone should criticize anything about it? You aren't making any kind of point you understand that? Shadow Nirvana (talk) 21:31, 23 September 2015 (UTC)