RationalWiki talk:What is going on in the world?/Archive17

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Dawkins' "cliff"[edit]

What an effin' smear job. There is almost a complete disconnect between what the journalist writes and the quotes he uses to "support" his scribble. This is nothing new, of course, but it feels strange to see it described like that at RW. AtomicPlayboy (talk) 10:06, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

When will Americans learn how to spell paedophile, for fucking fuck's sake Scherben (talk) 10:28, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
To be fair, the atheist community took offense with the comments first. For example, here was PZ Myers's initial reaction. --OverworldTheme (talk) 14:06, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but you're wrong. This isn't Elevatorgate, which could have been interpreted as a non-serious comment. Dawkins may now be the posterboy for the fallacy of relative privation.
If we cannot address hypocrisy on our own side (and this is the most well-known atheist in the media we are talking about) then we are losing. Osaka Sun (talk) 17:36, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
"I look back a few decades to my childhood and see things like caning, like mild pedophilia, and can’t find it in me to condemn it by the same standards as I or anyone would today"
Am I stupid or is everyone (including Meyers) ignoring the bold part? He's not saying he doesn't codemn it in absolute terms, he's just saying he would codemn similar behaviour nowadays more harshly. Which is still inconsistent with his opinion about slavery and murder in the bible, but is a far cry from "defending mild p[a]edophilia". AtomicPlayboy (talk) 21:52, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
Now that's just criticism of presentism under the guise of appeal to nature. Obviously we can't judge the entirety of his childhood education on his pedophilic experiences alone - obviously he learned something to become the professor he is (compared to the religious indoctrination he's criticizing).
But then to ignore criticism of historical underage touching because "oh, I didn't feel that psychologically traumatized!" is contradictory. It's an apologetic stance. Osaka Sun (talk) 22:22, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
They're not ignoring the bolded part. Even Myers addresses it directly at one point. The fact that this is about the only thing he wants to judge "by the standards of the time" leaves a bad taste in the mouth for a lot of people. It too uncomfortably straddles the border of hypocrisy. --OverworldTheme (talk) 02:00, 17 September 2013 (UTC)
I agree. But when somebody reads the headline what stands out is "Dawkins defends p[a]edophilia", when it actually should be "Dawkins is a hypocrite". Of course such a thing would never have attracted so much coverage and hit$.
I would also point out that "mild touching" and racism is not the same thing as slavery, rape and murder, and the hipocrisy depends on whether one conflates them in the same, for a lack of a better term, "moral category" or not. Clearly Dawkins does not. AtomicPlayboy (talk) 10:04, 17 September 2013 (UTC)
"Mild touching and racism is not the same thing as slavery, rape and murder" Have you even you even read our criticisms? You've just engaged in his own fallacy. There is no defence for the former nor the latter. Osaka Sun (talk) 16:31, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

CNN link[edit]

CNN seems to have edited their story on Miss America, making it about her rather than the racist reactions, which is probably a good thing. However, that does mean the entry doesn't make as much sense. I imagine it's covered elsewhere, so the link should should probably be changed. Also, I don't recall the Fox commentator's comment being racist. Didn't he say that Miss Kansas should have won but was denied because she represented "American Values"? Anyone know what he's referring to specifically? I assume she mentioned Jesus or decried gay marriage or something. DickTurpis (talk) 14:22, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

Well poo, you're right, they changed the article while I was reading it. Saw this comment before I read the article and made sure to finish it before clicking refresh and "poof", it's magically a different article. Among countless others, Buzzfeed and Time still have articles about it up, so I'm sure we can replace the CNN link with another one. As for Miss Kansas, I do believe people were routing for her because "something, something guns". Not overtly racist, per se, but still telling. --OverworldTheme (talk) 14:34, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
Don't know if its true, but someone on the guy's Twitter feed said he posted the comment before the winner was announced. Considering Miss Kansas didn't make the top 4, he would have known she didn't win before he knew who did. I'm tempted to give him the benefit of the doubt. Seems like more of an Andy-style "the liberal NFL hates Tebow because he's a Christian" sort of idiocy than outright racism. DickTurpis (talk) 18:42, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
Most of the news media need to be captured for posterity just like a certain website RW used to routinely capture. Acknowledging that you even have edited a story is often seen as a sign of weakness, let alone preserving the unedited content for reference purposes. When you see a story "Blacks more violent says Harvard" and link it, you need to remember that people who click your link may find instead "Study says some racial groups may be more prone to emotional outbursts" or even just the homepage of the media outlet with no sign that the link ever went anywhere.
Now, arguably such changes, at least the first kind (where a story is edited after publication but not deleted) are legitimate. They should show clearly that they were altered after publication, but besides that it's a good thing that editorial management step in. This is particularly true where a story may itself cause harm (e.g. "Professor Example Name arrested for killing boy" -> "Boy murder: Academic arrested" removing personal details that may incite violence against criminal suspect; or "City is suicide capital for jumpers" -> "New cause-of-death figures published" avoiding glamorisation of suicide reduces incidence due to ideation).
But if you want to comment on the news media, and especially when you want to comment on how they portray something you don't want a moving target and with a few rare exceptions that's what the online news media present today. Tialaramex (talk) 17:16, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

Fracking wells can be good for the enviroment[edit]

Ha? Zero (talk) 20:37, 19 September 2013 (UTC)

Can we please hear the words "no confidence"[edit]

What, you actually expect Conservative members to vote against their own party in a confidence vote against a government with a majority? PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 17:11, 27 September 2013 (UTC)

I'm changing it. It's dumb. Osaka Sun (talk) 17:15, 27 September 2013 (UTC)

Berlusconi article[edit]

Not much point in lniking to an article which sites behind the FT pay wall really is there? Oldusgitus (talk) 06:04, 28 September 2013 (UTC)

Icon change[edit]

Icon wigo world alt.svg

So as to not cause a panic...

The icon on Main is now different than the one here and in the WIGO Nav. Someone complained (I can find) that the old one didn't look like a planet correctly, with the lines "incorrect." I'd like to change them. Speak now, or hold your peace. It may require changes on the FB page and blog as well. Sterilesig.svgtalk 15:47, 3 September 2013 (UTC)

No axial tilt? What world is this supposed to be? Mercury? Rotate it clockwise 23° or so. Compro01 (talk) 17:46, 3 September 2013 (UTC)
If you're going to be an asshole, you can figure out how to rotate yourself since it's not that hard. Sterilesig.svgtalk 20:43, 3 September 2013 (UTC)
I wasn't intending to be an asshole. I was just making a bit of fun about getting up about the lines being incorrect, but not bothering with the tilt. Compro01 (talk) 00:55, 4 September 2013 (UTC)
I also like it better with a tilt. WẽãšẽĩõĩďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 19:41, 4 September 2013 (UTC)

You'all missed the point of the question, and I really wish I didn't have to do this whole Main redesign myself. Sterilesig.svgtalk 00:54, 6 September 2013 (UTC)

tilted by 23.000°
You don't have to do it at all. But I'm sure your work is appreciated nonetheless--"Shut up, Brx." 00:58, 6 September 2013 (UTC)
I was the original complainer, and things look a lot better now. Thanks. Redchuck.gif ГенгисpillagingModerator 13:33, 9 September 2013 (UTC)

If we're worried about the accuracy of the image, I'd suggest this:

More accurate this way.

- Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 15:56, 11 September 2013 (UTC)

Where's the bloody elephants? (and the serpent floating on the sea under the turtle.) I thought this was Rationalwiki? Scherben (talk) 20:18, 12 September 2013 (UTC)
There's also this Scarlet A.pngmoral 11:32, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
There's also this. Scarlet A.pngmoral 11:32, 30 September 2013 (UTC)

Anti-Roma sentiment[edit]

That's tipped me over the edge. I'm now sufficiently disillusioned with humanity to end it all Scherben (talk) 18:08, 29 September 2013 (UTC)

... You're welcome ? More seriously, this made me feel even more ashamed of my country. Do any of you guys know how to become an apatrid ? --Kungo GumiQui ça ? 06:44, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
There is a big misunderstanding here, a gross exaggeration and some, oh so common, French bashing. The answer that gives 93% (98% and 84%) is for this question: "Are the the Roma poorly integrated?". It's not about deporting them, but about their integration: someone clearly didn't read the article completely. You have to understand first that it's not about all the Romani living in France but only the ones coming from Romania and Bulgaria who, being Europeans, have the right to travel in France, but, being from these newly integrated countries in the EU, have, temporarily the same restriction than non-members to find a job (it costs more in taxes to the company employing them than for another member of the EU, to give an example). So are the Roma poorly integrated? No, if we are talking about all the Romani, yes if you are talking about the ones begging in the street with their children, coming from Romania and Bulgaria where they are treated like dirt and earn peanuts, but it is the duty of the French government to integrate them (by allowing them to find a job, by helping the children to go to school).
To be clear : 77% of the French interrogated for this poll (beware of the polls, it's not that simple: it's in French, but in this modern age you can find automatic translators online) think that Manuel Valls, the Ministry of Interior, is right when he says "ces populations ont des modes de vie extrêmement différents des nôtres et qui sont évidemment en confrontation" and "les Roms ont vocation à revenir en Roumanie ou en Bulgarie". Ok, I have to translate: "these populations have lifestyles extremely different from our owns, and that are obviously in confrontation" and "Roma are destined to return to Romania or Bulgaria". Wait! Does that mean that the former translation was biased? Yep. Manuel Valls is not a very sympathetic guy, and I really don't agree with him, but he is not Pierre Laval. Is there any anti-Romani racism in France? Yes, but it's clearly not new (the Evil Jew stereotype has no new home): it has always been like that since the Middle Ages. Yes it's a shame, but is France really different from every single other countries?--Sultan Rahi (talk) 08:21, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
My family says things like that gypsies used to be useful, and weave baskets and repair straw weaved stuff, but now they're all on welfare and they steal. So yeah, there's definitely some anti-Roma sentiment in France, and I doubt it's just from my family.--"Shut up, Brx." 10:06, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
Also, despite only being a small percentage of the population, they have a large presence, owing to their transient lifestyle and the small fleet they bring with them. A lot of communities put up cement blocks to prevent them from stopping, and when they do find a place to stay, their presence is seen as an annoyance.
It would be easier if they would just settle down, but then again, I doubt it's that simple.--"Shut up, Brx." 10:10, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
in answer to sultan rahi above, no, France is no different to other countries in its anti Roma sentiment. Certainly in London the Roma are none too popular due to their squatting in places that are not designed or able to handle large groups of people living there, and the aggressive begging that goes on. This anti Roma sentiment is not restricted daily mail readers either. The local homeless dislike them too as the Roma have been aggressively 'evicting' them from where they have been sleeping and burning their bedding. AMassiveGay (talk) 12:56, 1 October 2013 (UTC)
just to be clear, the Roma are amongst the most persecuted peoples in Europe today, but anti Roma sentiment is not going to go away when existing infrastructures are not able to deal with them. I am loathe to use the argument that 'we can't deal with our own homeless problem' because that's not the Roma's fault, but I have seen a massive increase in the number of homeless where I live in the past couple of months, coupled with a chronic housing shortage, the Roma are going to be a convenient scapegoat. AMassiveGay (talk) 13:10, 1 October 2013 (UTC)
Indeed they will be a handy scapegoat. Meanwhile the heartless rich scum who've caused this increase in homelessness and poverty live in ease, laughing. It's those bastards I hate. Scherben (talk) 18:05, 1 October 2013 (UTC)

Grand Theft Auto demonstrates everything wrong with video games in one tidy WIGO[edit]

Misogyny? Check. A fanbase so insanely blind to its own privilege as to disown anyone who criticizes that misogyny? Check. Loyalty to a brand so extreme as to emulate the violence it portrays in real life? Check. All there is that's left for me to point out is how much better the Japanese industry is. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 08:46, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

It's a loud minority, the fantards. They'll never be satisfied with anything. She gave it a freakin' 9/10, that means it's a good fucking game. What more could you possibly want?? This is why I don't like fanboys. Nullahnung (talk) 03:00, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Also, I need to point out that that last statement you made is based on one incident where motives were unclear. That doesn't prove anything. Please, don't go spouting off about how GTA promotes violence, because that is the sort of bullcrap that flies around after every school shooting. Nullahnung (talk) 03:03, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
(I take it you mean my second-to-last statement.) Yeah, I was just spouting when I wrote that. I don't really think GTA is to blame for any real-life violence. I do think it's a shitty series, but that's all. I tend to get really pissed off by discussions of modern video games because I grew up on an N64 and it seems like everyone around me has forgotten that Japanese games exist. So sometimes my judgment gets clouded. :( Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 03:45, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Hmm, yeah. I grew up on the N64 too. I'll be the first to admit that gaming has become less innocent and gotten more problems even as it has matured (sound like real life, eh? You start off so innocent, then you get all sorts of problems later, or maybe they were there all along, waiting to develop and manifest). Japanese companies are an enigma to me, frankly. I can't seem to figure out how they work and their public presence is abysmal. They have their sexist issues, but they also seem strangely disconnected from it, but I'm talking from a possibly ignorant Western perspective of course. Japan just seems like such an island in the gaming world, where things are how they are, that is, very different from the West, and then sometimes the warm gulf stream bears us in the west seeds from that island, and they manifest and grow into fruitful trees (I should stop rambling). Nullahnung (talk) 04:03, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
You mean the industry that makes games where you get to tie up and rape little girls? --PsyGremlinHable! 09:00, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Okay, the non-sexual half of the Japanese industry, then. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 09:01, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
[1]--"Shut up, Brx." 09:06, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Actually, Dragon's Crown art style with the ridiculousness is just that, a ridiculous art style (that nobody really likes, but that's besides the point), so I don't regard the out-of-proportion-ness as all that bad. It's a good game, though, if you can look past the art style. Also, Kotaku is a shit site and has a really bad reputation in video game journalism. Don't go there. Nullahnung (talk) 02:42, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
I simplified too much above I feel. Dragon Crown's gender representation problems are many and complicated. This is a very good discussion on it: http://thegamesofchance.blogspot.co.uk/2013/08/on-women-of-dragons-crown.html . Basically... there is no basically, if you want to talk about Dragon's Crown at all, you should read all of it. But yeah, basically the art should be as it is, but there are other problems. Nullahnung (talk) 04:30, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Alright fine, the entire global industry sucks except for Fire Emblem. Happy everyone? Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 09:11, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Actually, no, there are plenty of good examples for companies that do well in terms of gender representation. Valve and Blizzard to name some of the really big ones. Nullahnung (talk) 02:46, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Valve is nearly deified by the gaming community, so the irony is well-noted. Osaka Sun (talk) 03:33, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Gonna have to ruin that for you too I'm afraid. Polite Timesplitter Cultural loneliness is a right pain 13:44, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
It's a rom hack by some random guy, what does that prove? That the world has some really terrible fan fiction? Yeah, that's about it. Nullahnung (talk) 02:55, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
That's the joke. Polite Timesplitter Cultural loneliness is a right pain 07:29, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
Wehpudicabok can't seem to win apparently. For me? GTA has been boring as hell. You want to have everything, go play Saints Row. Zero (talk) 13:55, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
I really can't. Though I must say, I'd take a hacked FE over GTA any day. Even if it is just an obnoxious wish-fulfillment fantasy. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 03:45, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Saints Row 4 is vastly different from predecessors, btw, and the predecessors are different too. I think GTA fills that gap where you can have fun doing slightly realistic criminal stuff, more orderly than Saints Row, anyways (no, it does not lead to more school shootings, don't listen to Jack Thompson... GTA is rated mature for a reason). Nullahnung (talk) 03:32, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
GTA is one of those series that is going to take a lot of time to reform. After Glenn Beck's notorious criticism of the series (Prostitution and violence is antithetical to family values! Ban it!) fans have made it into the very definition of escapist fantasy. Osaka Sun (talk) 20:58, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
These are the people that make me ashamed to like the GTA series, and videogames in general. — (talk to) [æn əˈmɛɹɪkən ˈnaiːɪlɪst] 21:29, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
And then there are those of us who play Freecell and spades... DickTurpis (talk) 22:42, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

I think some of you are taking this too personalty. --Revolverman (talk) 22:53, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

The people flying off the handle are a wingnut fringe. You're talking about a game that has over 12 million players ($800 million in first-day sales/$65 per copy=12.3 million copies sold) on the first day. Any group that large is going to have a non-trivial number of crazies. Compro01 (talk) 15:20, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Your math is off. $40/copy goes to Rockstar Games, who pays Rockstar North to make GTA. So the number may be much closer to 20 million. Zero (talk) 15:32, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
There's nothing particularly wrong with video games. In video games I have killed people who were just hired help, burned villages, and destroyed worlds; and I have also freed slaves, protected wildlife and prevented the end of the world. Am I a wicked tyrant or a saintly leader? No. It's just a game. Even fairly young children can tell the difference between real things and fiction, so trusting adults to do so is not an unreasonable decision. The improving graphics have lead people to wring their hands more over video games than tabletop games (board games, card games, dice games, roleplaying) but the topics are not so different. When I run a card in London that increases my poverty statistic what that represents is an industry that caused or attracted poverty in the real world. I don't interact with a visual representation of a starving family being forced to work twelve hour shifts, but the story tells me that's what's going on. When my medic flies out of disease-ridden Tokyo without stopping in Pandemic they are leaving thousands to die of something awful. Again we don't see them foaming and laying in the streets, and this time there isn't even any competition, just the drive to beat the game itself like a video game.
Games vary in depth. Bang! probably isn't trying to teach you anything about gun violence, whereas 3:16 does have something to say about war, at least about wars against aliens of whatever stripe. But we don't overreact about this in movies. Does Alien have anything important to tell us? How about Closer ? Aside from "look right when crossing the street in London because we drive on the other side" ? Tialaramex (talk) 10:14, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
people over react to movies all the time. And i think they they do clearly effect how we think and behave, just with more subtlety than making you go out and comment murder. The argument with video games that is different is that movies are a more passive experience while in games you actively engaged in and rewarded for questionable behaviour. The counter argument with both games and movies and other forms of media is that most people are savvy enough to know that the things they see and do in games and films are not things to do in real life, and as much as they enjoy the characters in the media, they know that real life equivalents are monsters. AMassiveGay (talk) 11:36, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
I am in two minds with this. On the one hand I can the see the image sexism present in video games and how they may perpetuate a rape culture, and on the other hand they are are just a video game and people like do things in video games in a consequence free environment that they know are morally dubious and does not reflect their relations in real life. I certainly think GTA is a hell of a lot more knowing and hell of a lot more satirical about what it does than most games. In response to what someone said about saints row, saints row is GTA for imbeciles. AMassiveGay (talk) 11:22, 21 September 2013 (UTC)
Well, the thing Saints Row players liked, certainly when comparing something like Saints Row 3 to GTA 4 is that Saints Row preserved that sandbox "We don't care how you do it so long as you have fun" aspect. GTA 3 was successful in the same year as another of my favourite titles, Ico. The games could hardly be more different except I guess the protagonist is male in both. GTA 3 was a huge hit because it's a sandbox game and whether out of inspiration or necessity that follows into the mission design. If your mission is "get to place X" and you drive there in a tank, ignoring the gunfire of a rival gang that can't penetrate your armour, that is fine, and so is going there on motorcycle through back alleys to avoid the enemy gunmen, and so is walking there, picking them off with expert shots. Ico of course is entirely scripted, every player will have an almost identical experience, all of which was carefully designed by Team Ico. Both approaches can work, but if you bought GTA 4 expecting another sandbox you were in for a disappointment because Rockstar had decided they would script most missions quite heavily, and that's where Saints Row delivered. Yes it's stupid, but then this is fantasy, you survive hundreds of beatings and gunshot wounds, you kill dozens of cops and can walk the streets the next day without so much as a body guard, you instantly know how to fly a dozen types of plane... Tialaramex (talk) 12:54, 22 September 2013 (UTC)

UPDATE: my flatMate bought me GTA V last week. I finished it yesterday. Didn't play multi player as I don't have a gold account. Flatmate just sold it on eBay for more than he paid. Result. AMassiveGay (talk) 23:37, 1 October 2013 (UTC)

The game is just shit overall. Osaka Sun (talk) 00:30, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
I cannot view that video. The game was actually very good. AMassiveGay (talk) 10:10, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
I'm of the ilk that this is it best GTA V revue around http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQXpsIozdsE --Revolverman (talk) 10:58, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

"Before you ask, no, mission-critical support is not being shut down. (At least they're still able to laugh)"[edit]

"Account suspended:The profile you are trying to view has been suspended. To return to your home timeline, click here." PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 00:14, 2 October 2013 (UTC)

On American industry leaders/economic conservatives[edit]

I really don't understand these people. After the worst market failure in 70 years, they enlisted a relatively moderate governor of Massachusetts to govern to the right, gut the health care law that was based on his own, and turn the notion of "government run like a business" into a mantra for "noticing inequality and wanting welfare makes you illogical, long live Rand!"

And now, once they see the reactionaries wanting to commit economic suicide because they think subsidies to business = communism/fascism, they wake up. Oy. Osaka Sun (talk) 23:31, 2 October 2013 (UTC)


How does Obama save Obamacare and prevent economic meltdown? US shutdown: Barack Obama warns of default danger. Proxima Centauri (talk) 17:47, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

Discussed here. Either #1 or #2. Osaka Sun (talk) 18:01, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

The world in 2100[edit]

Does seem a bit utopian for me Scherben (talk) 23:56, 5 October 2013 (UTC)

I haven't watched the video, but I doubt the capitalists will do any favors to all the people rendered unemployed by increasingly sophisticated automatons.--"Shut up, Brx." 12:17, 8 October 2013 (UTC)
Precisely. And that's one of the reasons I asked if it should go in clogs... Scherben (talk) 17:39, 8 October 2013 (UTC)
More United States of Manna than Australia, then? Compro01 (talk) 19:43, 8 October 2013 (UTC)
That sounds like hell Scherben (talk) 19:08, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

Blasphemy law[edit]

That's what you get when you let people pretend "freedom of religion" makes sense. Their religion tells them they need to punish people who blaspheme, and you've told them they're entitled to the freedom to practice their religion, so what's the problem? Well of course the problem is you forgot to say "Oh, we didn't mean actually practising just sort of mouthing along". But if we pretend this is a problem because it's Arabs doing it this time then we're back to straight forward racism. Blasphemy laws are bullshit in Ireland, and they're bullshit in Russia, and they'd be bullshit in America if it had them (for once America is less backward than average). Tialaramex (talk) 12:08, 8 October 2013 (UTC)

The argument for freedom of religion is rather for freedom of expression. So you're free to practice as you please, but stuff like murder still gets you arrested.--"Shut up, Brx." 12:13, 8 October 2013 (UTC)

More transphobia, yay...[edit]

I bet the guy who wants to lock trans people up in camps also thinks Democrats are fascists. News flash, buddy: If you advocate forcing people into camps, you're the fascist. Look in the goddamn mirror. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 08:04, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

Goodpost.gif Reckless Noise Symphony (talk) 08:05, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

Or maybe try an actual reason?[edit]

There's currently a WIGO which reads:

To anyone in the scientific community who is apparently "confused" why women don't want to enter the field, now you have your explanation.

... linking to two reports of harassment and general nastiness from SciAm, a popular science magazine.

So, first of all, laymen seem to think SciAm and similar publications are somehow the pinnacle of scientific respectability when in fact they are Fifty Shades of Grey to a real scientific journal's My Cousin Rachel. Like its sister Nature, but for a wider audience, SciAm exists to sell advertising. Nature's advertising is for million dollar lab equipment, SciAm sells more mundane things, but they're both just a mechanism to put human eyeballs in front of advertising. That's why Nature publishes so much awful (but eyeball attracting) bunk in case you didn't realise yet.

Now, having stepped over that particular stinking turd, this is a story about the editor of a magazine (allegedly) harassing bloggers and writers. No actual scientists involved so far as I can see. To go from that to the vague generalisation "this is why women don't want to be scientists" is as nonsensical as insisting "Well, 5. 7, and 9 are all prime, so therefore all even numbers are prime". I mean there's only two problems with the argument: the premise is false, and the logic is wrong. But, those are pretty serious problems and should be enough to dispose of the whole thing. Tialaramex (talk)

I agree, plus picking lone sleazebags to tar the entire scientific profession seems a bit Schlafly-esque to me Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 14:33, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
Have you two read the whole thing and back stories? The point is that it's not just "lone sleazebags" but is pretty endemic. It's just that the straw and the camel's back have finally come together.
SciAm might not be "the pinnacle of scientific respectability" but it is one of the major public, i.e. non scientist, faces and is likely to have a greater effect on, for instance, high school students and the like. I imagine that this dismissive attitude would be a real reason to deter women from science careers. Scream!! (talk) 15:49, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
Well in that case why not gather up (or at least link to) some more bundles of straws to back up the point (also I think you need a different metaphor than "the straw that broke the camels back"). As it stands the WIGO just seems to be damning all of the scicntific community based on a lone scumbag, and while sexism may very well be endemic in the scientific community that article on its own does not warrant the line of "THIS is why women hate science". Maybe the line could just be slightly reworded.Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 16:04, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
It ain't my WIGO. I rather think that onus falls on you, or rather on Tialaramex to show that it's not a problem. It's not my fault that you're too idle to read in depth before commenting. (Straw & Camel's OK by me) Scream!! (talk) 16:33, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
Sexism is most definitely endemic in the scientific community. While my own anecdotal evidence isn't useful for backing up the WIGO, I'm a researcher in one of the most male-dominated fields in science (physics). While some fields suffer this problem more than others, it does to some extent exist within the entire community. I think there are probably more relevant examples than SciAm (SciAm is hardly representative of the scientific community in any way), but the underlying point is still true. - GrantC (talk) 16:40, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
You're making the mistake of looking at this from the inside. SciAm might not be taken seriously by the scientific community but to the laity it is the heart of science. Your average man or woman in the street or at high school is not going to look any further into anything. After news reports, SciAm is probably considered to be the authority by most non scientists. Their attitudes will be seen as representative of the community, whether they are or not. Scream!! (talk) 17:44, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
The WIGO as written makes a claim that it seems nobody wants to step forward to defend. Even Scream apparently only wants to "imagine" that there might be a connection, whereas the WIGO says we'll find it at the far end of the link. So unless somebody does want to defend it I'll just remove the WIGO in a few hours since "Magazine editor is asshole" doesn't seem very WIGO-worthy and nor does "Magazine editor-in-chief lies to try to cover up misbehaviour by her staff". Tialaramex (talk) 17:52, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
We don't remove WIGOs. They are judged by the votes. Scream!! (talk) 18:00, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
(Response to your earlier point directed at me) It is a problem that SciAm's editor is sexist, but it is certainly not the largest barrier for the entry of women into the hard sciences. SciAm is indeed a magazine for the laity, so why make this connection that this is the primary reason why women don't go into the hard sciences? Progressive discouragement throughout years of education is the much bigger issue here. - GrantC (talk) 18:03, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
I also feel the need to point out that I don't support removing the WIGO, and I have no issue with its underlying point. I just think the use of SciAm as the example for this WIGO doesn't do the underlying issue enough justice. I'm not disagreeing with you, per se, just expressing some thoughts on that matter. - GrantC (talk) 18:07, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
"We don't remove WIGOs." says Scream!! What's this then? Tialaramex (talk) 18:38, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
Not that I'm taking a side on the subject, but that's not a good example. You can see from the diff that the BoN had accidentally deleted most of the page, and PSaL was just rolling back the edit. I doubt he paid much attention to the fact that he didn't replace the BoN's WIGO. - GrantC (talk) 18:45, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
To be honest I wasnt saying the WIGO needs to be removed, only that it should be slightky reworded to not make it seem like its being claimed that SciAm is synomynous with the science community. All that stuff about sexism in the scientific field I accept, its just a matter of semantics in this case. Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 18:54, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
Right, that's pretty much my viewpoint as well. I believe that it's important to separate the two issues, as there are much more significant barriers facing women in the hard sciences that are often overshadowed by issues like this (much like pop sci magazines and news outlets tend to overshadow real scientific progress in general). - GrantC (talk) 19:09, 19 October 2013 (UTC)

Nosey twats in Canada[edit]

Reprehensible. On top of which, it gives ammo to the NWO crazies Scherben (talk) 20:44, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

And Bell's response on this shows they're completely and totally divorced from reality. "We’re actually doing something that consumers generally are in favour of and want. We view it as a positive, value-add service for our subscribers”. Compro01 (talk) 21:38, 23 October 2013 (UTC)
What do those words even mean? Do even they know? Scherben (talk) 21:39, 23 October 2013 (UTC)
Like everything else the telecoms say in Canada, they mean "we'll tell you what you want and you'll shut up and take it." Lady Corvex (talk) 22:48, 23 October 2013 (UTC)Lady Corvex
You know its fucked when even the Cons are "Ok, that shit crosses the line" when it comes to the Triopoly that Bell,Rogers, and Telus have. --Revolverman (talk) 23:29, 23 October 2013 (UTC)
The Privacy Commissioner is now checking it out. I don't see this particularly helping Bell's reputation. Osaka Sun (talk) 00:58, 24 October 2013 (UTC)
Like Bell has even given a shit. You dont have to when no-one has any choice in the matter. --Revolverman (talk) 05:29, 24 October 2013 (UTC)

Roma child in Ireland[edit]

Why was this deleted? Scherben (talk) 21:42, 23 October 2013 (UTC)

I'm guessing because you deleted 47½ entries when you posted it. I've reinstated it with a proper summary. Please don't post WIGOs with de-contextualised phrases which make no sense till the reader has followed the link. See recent discussion about this at the Saloon Bar. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 22:12, 23 October 2013 (UTC)
I did fucking what? Shite, huge apologies. Genuinely fucked up there *embarrassed*. Sorry Scherben (talk) 23:23, 23 October 2013 (UTC)

Pedant's corner[edit]

You mean head of government, right? Wiretapping the German federal president is unlikely to be particularly helpful. Peter mqzp 00:00, 24 October 2013 (UTC)

They probably wiretap him too, just in case. Compro01 (talk) 01:20, 24 October 2013 (UTC)

the use of 'manufactroversy'[edit]

Can we please stop using this term when there is clear controversy over a particular issue? The recent Roma story is rife with controversy of one sort or another. AMassiveGay (talk) 16:43, 25 October 2013 (UTC)

Maybe the use of the word reflected the false dichotomy being used by the press and others in regard to the Roma people? :) I'd link up Ben MacIntyre's superb piece in The Times today, but it's hidden behind a bloody paywall Scherben (talk) 18:41, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
Aye, I think the manufactroversy in this case refers to the "how DARE these dirty gypsies abscond with sweet innocent Arya...NON GYPSY children" hysteria certain newspapers were kicking up, not the fully justified shitstorm once it became clear how full of shit said papers were. Judge HoldenThe Judge Smiles 20:02, 26 October 2013 (UTC)

Police dogs as "officers"[edit]

I do find it amusing that people think they can change a dog's ontological status by referring to it by an unprecedented word. Let me know when one other than McGruff the Crime Dog makes detective. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 01:18, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

It's pretty confusing; the article seems to use "K-9 officer" interchangeably to refer to both the dogs and handlers. WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 08:05, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Not going to lie, I was really hoping the story was that they somehow lost the drugs or something. Because then nobody gets hurt, and they still look incompetent. Shadow of Lords talk 17:44, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

"It's a hoax!"[edit]

It seems to have gotten to the point that, just as a person tapped between the eyes will immediately blink, an American informed of a public massacre will immediately accuse the media of lying. I cannot think of a public shooting in the last few years that did not produce conspiracy theorists, and lately these pages go up within hours of the actual events. Not nearly enough time for any actual positive evidence to suggest a hoax, but when your default attitude toward any news item you don't like is to assume you're being lied to, the lack of (insert bizarre form of "evidence" here) is evidence enough.

It disgusts me. It really does. I've lived in America my whole life, so people being senselessly killed doesn't phase me so much anymore, but accusing everyone of lying immediately after learning about it somehow still manages to piss me the fuck off. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 03:42, 2 November 2013 (UTC)

Last year, a guy won the internet by registering the domain name "sandyhookshootinghoax.com" (or some other variant thereof) and making the page a redirect to something useful like the Red Cross or an anti-gun site or something. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 04:06, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
Nice. I wanna give that guy a high five or a hug or something. Wehpudicabok [話] [変] 05:01, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
I wouldn't say this is unique to shootings. If you look at stuff like Infowars, there are conspiracy theories surrounding almost every major news event (or pseudo-event, as the case may be). The shootings may just be higher profile because they get the gun nuts in a froth. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 05:20, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
It's a brilliant antidote to living in a world where you're bombarded with actual facts that might interfere with your preconceived ideas. Once upon a time you could easily live your whole life without running into any conflicting evidence on such diverse subjects as: whether Jesus is God, the necessity of beating children when they misbehave, folks who look different from you being inhuman savages, and the need to recite things over and over in order to remember them. Now, when modern media keeps shoving evidence in your face that seems to conflict with your cherished beliefs one plan of action is to change your beliefs. A lot of people like to say they most certainly would do so, from the Dalai Lama to Richard Dawkins. But actually doing it is hard, if an opportunity presents itself to keep believing the same things and excuse the evidence in some other fashion then most of us will seize it. And that's what these hoax/ conspiracy theory stories are for. Tialaramex (talk) 17:39, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
Gotta admit, evidence contrary to a comforting world view is fucking annoying :( Scherben (talk) 19:50, 2 November 2013 (UTC)


I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that the honey was forbidden because it's potentially biologically active, like you can't bring seeds or fruit across borders without special paperwork. One guy drops an acorn out of his luggage into the mud and the next thing you know it's all oak trees as far as you can see. We can't predict in advance which foreign species will run rampant (rats, Japanese knotweed, cane toads) and which will die of homesickness by the time you leave the airport, so better safe than sorry.

If I'm right then Dawkins is a complete idiot because this had not even the tiniest connection with terrorism (unless you think the decimation of native species by imported rats was terrorism). Tialaramex (talk) 23:01, 4 November 2013 (UTC)

I seriously doubt its potential biological activity is anything close to the "reason" the honey was denied passage. Only the most dehydration-resistant spores (such as Paenibacillus larvae or Clostridium botulinum) can survive in it. In a more innocent age, even before the word "bacteriostatic" came into use, it was used as a wound dressing.
More likely, the theatrical security agents are instructed to reject all liquids of unknown composition, no matter how sealed or labeled. Who knows, that stuff in the jar could be hypergolic in cabin air. Yes, it has to do with the elevated level of fear, uncertainty and doubt which is the aim of terrorism. They have won. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 23:18, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
Probably has nothing to do with "biologically active," and, like Sprocket says, everything to do with the fact that you can't take liquids on plane unless it's your meds or baby formula. Honey is a thick, slow-moving liquid. I am, very pleased to see Shrill Dawkins making an ass out of himself yet again. It's been, what, 10 years since they banned liquids on flights? What the hell did he think was gonna happen? The man might be a decent biologist, but he comes across as a boring old cranky jackass otherwise. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 23:29, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
Yup, it's been over a decade of ineffective fear-based "security" measures, and I don't see why the shouting about that should subside. As far as I'm concerned, the whole DHS/TSA clusterfuck is wingnut welfare, writ large. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 23:43, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
Writing a well-reasoned, decently-researched criticism of security theater, one that engages with the substantial body of literature on the discourse of civil rights would be a welcome intervention from a public intellectual of Shrill's stature. Being either too dull to remember what the existing rules are, or sufficiently self-important to think that they don't apply to him, and then getting all shirty on his blog does nothing except making Shrill look...shrill. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 00:00, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
A tl;dr criticism would not add substantially to what's already been said. No matter how well-reasoned, it would meet far fewer eyes than a public tantrum. Those indefensible rules come from a feckless bureaucracy, and should not apply to anyone. (If you are planning to defend them, I shall reach in the Nurenberg compartment of the Godwin sack for "just following the rules.")
He was a globe-trotter from way back. I'm pretty sure he was familiar with the ways of getting through international airports on at least three continents, including Africa, before the present iteration of FUD. As such, the man is perfectly capable of seeing bullshit for what it is. Bullshit doesn't always need a reasoned rebuttal; sometimes a clear prompt call of "BULLSHIT!!!" is more apt. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 00:47, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
A tone argument is not convincing. You are being a butthurt theist again - David Gerard (talk) 20:58, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
There are arbitrary & bureaucratic rules covering pretty much every aspect of the air travel experience which, like it or not, we have to comply with or it will be at our loss. Having recently missed a flight, at considerable expense & inconvenience, because I arrived slightly after the check in time, my sympathy for a (fairly wealthy) guy losing a little jar of honey because he didn't pay attention to hand baggage regulations is limited. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 08:25, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

Asses handed to them?[edit]

I'm not sure that's a reasonable claim - if the Libertarian hadn't split the right-wing vote, the Republican would have won handily. (OTOH, that a Libertarian could do that does suggest lunatic fatigue amongst Republican voters.) - David Gerard (talk) 11:57, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

Over at Teabagger Facebook, they're all howling how the Libertarian was a Dem plant, designed to split the vote... these guys really don't take losing well. --PsyGremlinTal! 12:07, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
Cuccinelli was not entitled to those votes. I'm actually quite pleased the Libertarians actually did something rather than make a lot of pious noises before obediently voting GOP (Because Tax Cuts). --TheLateGatsby (The end of the dock ) 16:14, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
This. I'm no libertarian (well, I'm a civil libertarian, but that's not the same thing....) but I am always happy to see honest attempts to break out of the stifiling and ultimately antidemocratic two-party mold, even if that means that the guy you dislike somewhat less loses the election on account of it. I wish the left had the stones to break free of the Democratic Party. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 16:30, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
I'm not sure the libertarians split the vote so much as gave disaffected Repubs somewhere to make their protest. Virginia has a lot of government workers who were less than impressed with the shutdown. Quite a few of these couldn't vote Republican because they blamed them for the shutdown but couldn't vote Dem because, well, they just couldn't go commie.
The Republicans lost in an election which ought to have been theirs for the taking. When will they start to look at the milaise within.Innocent Bystander (talk) 17:02, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
That's a good point. The situation in Virginia must be horrible, if Federal workers were willing to vote for a man who thinks they're thieving scum. On the other hand, it's refreshing to have a politician who is open about his contempt for the voters. --TheLateGatsby (The end of the dock ) 17:17, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
The gnashing of teeth among the Republicans is amusing, and I am one. Ultimately, it's the candidate's own fault if he fails to persuade people to prefer his own fine self over any third party candidate, even if given the math involved the only thing minor party candidates can ever be are spoilers for the most similar side. Was true when Al Gore failed to carry Florida, and it's still true today. And the typical response - that Republicans need more vigorous ideological commitments, and stronger commitments to non-cooperation with Obama - doesn't bode well for the future of the Republicans as a non-minor party. - Smerdis of Tlön (talk) 17:40, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
The answer will indeed be to double down against these RINO infiltrators and the unholy pot-smoking Libertarian scum - David Gerard (talk) 21:29, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
I'm not convinced that Cuccinelli would have won even without the Libertarian challenger. E.W. Jackson got about the same percentage of votes as Cuccinelli, which means (looking at the totals) in addition to people voting only for Sarvis and abstaining their vote towards a lieutenant governor, there were people voting Sarvis-Northam. If Sarvis hadn't run, at best his votes would have been split evenly between the two remaining candidates, or at worst almost all gone to McAuliffe. --OverworldTheme (talk) 23:25, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

Tory councillor item[edit]

That article is from 2005, FFS. Why bother when there's plenty of 2013 evil Tory shit to choose from? London Grump (talk) 23:35, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

Does this picture make me look racist WIGO context.[edit]

"Yum Yum" is a Quebec brand of potato chips. Their corporate mascot back in the day was an image of a First Nations kid. They are now reviving that image on a series of "vintage" packages, and have placed displays in stores where you can put your head in a cut out and get your picture taken in a caricature of a First Nations person. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 16:42, 7 November 2013 (UTC)

So is there any news coverage we can link to, or blogs about it that could go on wigo:blogs? I'm not real keen on a WIGO world entry that just links to an undated company website. When I clicked on it I thought it was an ad pop-up at first. ΨΣΔξΣΓΩΙÐWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:56, 7 November 2013 (UTC)
I understand the problem, and I'm keeping my eyes open. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 19:04, 7 November 2013 (UTC)
Saying that this is a news is just like saying that the long expensive and boring advertisment La légende de Shalimar is an artistic movie. By the way, how can it be new, when there are already plenty of this kind of things. Banania anyone ? Not that it's not racist, but it's good to put it in a complete article about this kind of things in our societies than to pretend it's a news.--Sultan Rahi (talk) 05:14, 8 November 2013 (UTC)
It's news because it's a new campaign that revives a corporate mascot that hasn't been seen since the 1990s. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 14:30, 8 November 2013 (UTC)
The story's been picked up by CBC which makes it officially 'news'. BTW, I can't view the Facebook page which is linked on the company website and some of the coverage. Is that just because I'm not in Canada, or has it actually been taken down? WèàšèìòìďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 07:30, 11 November 2013 (UTC)
Well, here's an article in La Presse, although it's in French. At least you get a good look at the logo. --Kels (talk) 22:44, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Running a surplus by selling the seed corn[edit]

3.7B of surplus huh? Attained by selling off billions in assets, specifically about 2 billion of Crown land, over a billion in stock, and privatizing another Crown. Compro01 (talk) 21:46, 12 November 2013 (UTC)

Yup. But a small price to pay for another majority come the next election. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 22:34, 12 November 2013 (UTC)
Minority at best I suspect. Everyone in the West will vote Cons due to western aliaenation and/or voting for the MP rather then the party (Seriously, most people I've talked to hate the cons, but will vote for them because the MPs that run around here DO fight for our region). I suspect every seat east of Sask. will drop to the Libs, now that Harper can't play the "HES NOT CANADIAN" card. --Revolverman (talk) 10:47, 14 November 2013 (UTC)
Bah. Just promise more tax cuts, spin up the patented Random Attack Ad Generator, and robocall non-Conservative voters to inform them that their polling station has been relocated to Alert and the majority will be maintained. Compro01 (talk) 15:06, 14 November 2013 (UTC)
Trudeau is totally amateur hour, and the PQ will ramp up the anti-federalist vote. Quebec will split between the Bloc and the NDP, and, seeing as how Ford Nation hasn't abandoned Mayor McCrack yet, I don't see the GTA abandoning Prime Minister Here's Your Surplus. Conservative majority. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 17:40, 14 November 2013 (UTC)
I think Ford may be getting down to his crazification factor judging from recent polling, but in Ontario, there's no legal means of involuntarily removing him from office, absent a criminal conviction. Compro01 (talk) 21:26, 14 November 2013 (UTC)
They can't put him on trial for smoking crack? --Gulik (talk)
No. Smoking crack, in and of itself, isn't illegal, only possessing crack is illegal. And he isn't possessing crack right now, and there's no actual evidence (televised admissions don't even come close to putting it past reasonable doubt) that he did posses crack. The video isn't proof in the legal sense. They can't exactly reach into the video, grab the pipe out of his hand and send it off to the lab for the techs to say "Yup! It's full of crack.". They try to charge him and he'll just backpedal on the TV admissions at 33.6 kilobackpedals per second and the crown prosecutor has nothing. Compro01 (talk) 20:01, 20 November 2013 (UTC)


Is it actually a good source for news? (talk) 19:27, 19 November 2013 (UTC)

Good enough. I've added a local news affiliate, which probably updates faster than TP. --TheLateGatsby (The end of the dock ) 20:03, 19 November 2013 (UTC)
ThinkProgress is okay I guess. Really, if you want good journalism from an openly liberal source, Mother Jones is the way to go. TP, on the other hand, is a little too eager to go to bat for Democrats regardless of policy merits. It gets boring after a while. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 22:03, 21 November 2013 (UTC)
Actually, I prefer a more neutral journalistic source. Liberal talking points get just as stale as conservative ones, if you read enough of them. (talk) 04:58, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
That's because TP is one of Center for American ProgressWikipedia's outlets, which is a mouthpiece of the Obama administration. It does document what certain wingnuts are up to, but this is ultimately for the purpose of keeping people faithfully pulling the lever for "D" come election day. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 04:23, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

Sylvia Browne[edit]

Now she's dead, and I'm beyond any reach of her lawyers, she was a nailed on sociopath (I guess that's my pots and pans flying around the room) Scherben (talk) 19:31, 21 November 2013 (UTC)

Assuming that you mean it in it's formal sense; why do you say that? How do you know she wasn't just a rotten human being? A psychopath is a pretty narrowly defined term that one shouldn't really use to diagnose people you haven't met. --DamoHi 09:27, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

Filibuster rule change[edit]

I can already see this is going to piss of both parties, as soon as one can get a majority over the other. It really is a matter of time before someone cries foul from the Democrat side, and as we all know, the Republicans are already jumping around throwing tantrums. (talk) 05:00, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

Tactically, ending the filibuster may hurt both sides, but strategically, it limits the ability of an angry minority on the losing side of history to prevent the law from evolving with changing values. Its demise is the closest contemporary American politics gets to an unqualified good thing. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 08:36, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
My big fear is that sometimes, angry minorities on the losing side of history DO get a senate majority, and they could do some serious damage. But I've come to realize that I am very pessimistic about politics, and thankfully usually wrong.--"Shut up, Brx." 09:38, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
Even with the whole minority party thing, I'm happy this happened. Maybe this do-nothing congress will actually do some blippin work for once. Zero (talk) 12:10, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
From this side of the pond the fact that the elected party was (is) effectively prevented from acting is bizarre in the extreme. It gives far too much power not so much to the opposition but to the opposition crazies. Innocent Bystander (talk) 12:59, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
Most of the damage from the Bush years could have been avoided if someone simply told the spoiled idiot "no" once in a while. Short-sighted Republican majorities and Democratic cowardice enabled some incredibly bad policy. Reid and (most of) the Democrats aren't thinking past 2016. --TheLateGatsby (The end of the dock ) 16:10, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
No, they're thinking well past 2016. The filibuster is entirely about forcing inaction — it favors obstructionist, do-nothing nutjobs. Please take your fantasies of brave, principled Dems filibustering evil conservative Supreme Court nominees and flush them down the toilet. The filibuster is a last resort, and if stopping legislation or a nominee hinges upon it, then that means the opposition has already failed on multiple levels. Yet, you seem to be treating it as a centerpiece of the Senate process — it's not, it is and always was an abrogation. Get over 2016 and think about 2032, for Christ's sake. Do really want the Senate to continue being utterly paralyzed for the rest of the goddamn 21st century? This isn't about partisan political chess, it's about letting the Senate do its goddamn job. Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 21:41, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
OK, don't make any assumptions about my politics, and explain to me why you believe this isn't throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Sorry. I read what you said, and although I understand, I disagree. I believe this is throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Just like Bill Frist in 2005, Reid has decided the Filibuster is an obstacle, and dysfunction in the Senate is an afterthought.TheLateGatsby (The end of the dock ) 00:44, 23 November 2013 (UTC)
Yes. IMNSHO Super-majority votes should be required very sparingly if at all. A sovereign government must be able to do whatever it wants. If some device seems to defy this then either the government is not sovereign after all, or the device is illusory and must be brushed aside. Super-majority votes make it likely that situations will arise in which a group can paralyse the government without being able to seize the reins for themselves. This is intolerable, and no matter how famous and well-respected the people who put such a system in place it must be put out of use. Tialaramex (talk) 23:09, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
IMO, it would have been better to keep the filibuster for appointments but return the requirement to actually speak in order to sustain it in all situations. Turning it back into a physical ordeal with a name attached would go a long way to cutting its abuse. 192․168․1․42 (talk) 23:52, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
This. --TheLateGatsby (The end of the dock ) 01:02, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────I agree. And it should be required that they read Dr. Seuss. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 04:20, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

What the heck is a "Racial Discrimination note"?[edit]

See section title regarding the "Sometimes, it might be a good idea to avoid teaching understanding and appreciation of cultures/religions without the liberal use of coercion" story. Compro01 (talk) 03:33, 27 November 2013 (UTC)

I have a long-standing policy not to believe anything I read first on the Daily Mail website until I have verified it elsewhere. This sounds like some multiculturalist dystopia made up by a right-wing nutjob, not something real. Why would the school put something like that in a letter to parents and feel the need to tell them that it is going in their record without explaining what the hell a "Racial Discrimination Note" is? The thing just smacks of a hoax. RachelW (talk) 03:51, 27 November 2013 (UTC)
This came up somewhere else I frequent and I believe the gist of the story is true. The school announced a trip to look at other religious artifacts and bunches of parents refused to let the kids go - hence the overreaction from the principal. Personally I'm in two minds about it, threats and coercion are not a good look, but then I am a big fan of the Dennet Principle - teach your kids whatever the hell you like so long as they also learn what others believe and hold sacred. Fundamentally I think going on trips like this where kids learn about others culture and (in particular) religions should be compulsory, though I do share concerns about how that message has been portrayed here. DamoHi 03:59, 27 November 2013 (UTC)
It would seem like a hoax, but then, the school does exist, and so does the principal. I was unable to independently find the form, but they might have expunged that. Thus, I cannot say whether or not it is a hoax.Brenden (talk) 04:15, 27 November 2013 (UTC)
Nevermind, found a better source (The Telegraph) http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/danielhannan/100247284/refusal-will-result-in-a-racial-discrimination-note-being-attached-to-your-childs-educational-record/ I lied, not a better source. Brenden (talk) 04:17, 27 November 2013 (UTC)
PPS: Found an actual better source (The telegraph's news section and the BBC) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/10468353/School-children-as-young-as-8-told-they-would-be-labelled-racist-for-missing-school-trip.html


Brenden (talk) 04:18, 27 November 2013 (UTC)

The fact that the note appears to be in Comic Sans... PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 05:25, 27 November 2013 (UTC)

Interesting choice of words, that "labeled racist". People can be as bigoted, as racist as they like, just don't call them a "bigot" or a "racist" because that's a Very Bad Thing. London Grump (talk) 07:45, 6 December 2013 (UTC)

pointless snark[edit]

Is it really necessary to add some pointless snark about an unrelated dick when wigoing someone's death? AMassiveGay (talk) 21:56, 5 December 2013 (UTC)

I'll remove it. It's as bad as pre-emptively shaming Schlafly after a school shooting. PowderSmokeAndLeather: Say something once, why say it again?.Moderator 22:30, 5 December 2013 (UTC)