Talk:Yuri Gagarin

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Mission relevance?[edit]

The only possible missiony thing about him are the conspiracy theories about his death. At the moment, there's only one sentence about them, and many more that are not.--ZooGuard (talk) 17:48, 5 March 2013 (UTC)

I got nothing. TyJFBAA 17:57, 5 March 2013 (UTC)

If you want material related to Rational Wiki... the following are relevant: 1) Gagarin was an avowed and vocal atheist (but also a Commie!), 2) there are several conspiracy theories about him, namely that he was murdered (better known within the ex-USSR), and that several cosmonauts disappeared before he got up there, and 3) I'm sure some American nationalists claim he never got up there. Or never got there first - see Chuck Yeager comment. But if you want references, I'm afraid you're going to have to go beyond angliskaya yazik (or whatever it is).--Albannach (talk) 18:13, 5 March 2013 (UTC) p.s. Google "Gagarin" + "conspiracy theory" - there's a lot of stuff there. p.p.s. Included the "I see no God" quote, which may be apocryphal, but is so well known, it deserves to be mentioned.

Regarding conspiracy theories - not hard to find, but if you want the real deal, I'd look in Russian:

"Gagarin's legacy, meanwhile, has been dogged by conspiracy theories. Rumors still abound of botched and fatal space missions, the result of pervasive secrecy that surrounded the Soviet space program. "The degree of secrecy created shadows in which monsters could lurk," said Oberg, the NASA veteran.
"Some early flights used mannequins which might have been mistaken for real people. But at least one death was real: cosmonaut Valentin Bondarenko died in a pressure chamber fire during ground training less than a month before Gagarin's flight. His death became known only after Mikhail Gorbachev launched his reforms in the 1980s.
"And then there was Gagarin's own death on March 27, 1968. It still drives conspiracy theories that the KGB wanted him dead because he supposedly opposed the Soviet regime." From http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/04/09/man-space-50-year-old-feat-remembered/
You missed my point. I was not asking for references. I was pointing out that in its state at the time, the article was a general-interest pseudo-encyclopedic article, not a RW article. I also didn't dispute the existence of the conspiracy theories. Instead, I pointed out that for a non-stub RW article, you need to go into more detail than "they exist".
The "phantom cosmonauts" things is a separate conspiracy theory and therefore deserves a separate article. (I hope that, unlike Wikipedia, we won't plagiarize it from a certain website...)
(And BTW, "angliskaya yazik" is a declension failure.)--ZooGuard (talk) 18:40, 5 March 2013 (UTC)
I would like to point out that if point 1 is all that it takes to merit an article here we have a lot of work to do. TyJFBAA 18:42, 5 March 2013 (UTC)
I'm an avowed and vocal atheist. Can I have an article?--Bob"I think you'll find it's more complicated than that." 20:32, 5 March 2013 (UTC)
I wrote an article on Armondikov once... TyJFBAA 13:40, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

You've expressed a range of opinions to me Zooguard, while failing to explain them properly. As I see it this article (potentially or currently) fulfils two out of four of the mission objectives, and possibly a third. On that basis it qualifies. As for whatever "pseudo-encyclopedic" means, I suspect it depends on the viewpoint of the critic.

The phantom cosmonauts were to be my next intended article, but they tend to be more of an American obsession.

'"angliskaya yazik" is a declension failure' - The adjective doesn't agree with the noun, yadda yadda. Hence I said - "or whatever it is".

And no, Bob, you're not a global icon yet. -Albannach (talk) 16:33, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

My point was, Albannach, that in this context being an atheist is pretty irrelevant. As a hero of communist Russia it's hardly surprising. In fact, what would have been interesting would have been the exact opposite - if he had been a born-again Christian.--Bob"I think you'll find it's more complicated than that." 18:32, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
No, it wasn't a "range of opinions". Let's see if I can explain it simply... The original article was something more suited to an early-stage Wikipedia clone - "gee, this guy was the first in space, isn't that cool? and let's add some jokes for color, and get pedantic with the dates of birth and death. Oh, and there are some things about him potentially related to the purpose of this wiki, but we can't get into any detail, because that requires research, which is not fun". "This guy went to space, there are conspiracy theories about him" is content for a short, starting article ("stub-level" in my post above). This one was longer than that, but didn't relate more mission-related information than such a stub. Hence the "mission" template.--ZooGuard (talk) 17:54, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
Keep. He's an important(ish) figure from history and there is no reason to delete him from our pages. The readership here tend to be a bit nerdy and would be interested to learn a bit about this fellow. His atheism and a few snippy quotes about seeing no god seals the deal. DamoHi 20:37, 5 March 2013 (UTC)
Anyone "interested to learn about him" could open Wikipedia, or any of the books written about him.--ZooGuard (talk) 17:54, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
^ This is very true. TyJFBAA 18:34, 6 March 2013 (UTC)
Keep. On the condition that the conspiracy theories section is expanded.--Spud (talk) 13:00, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

It's science related. ఠ_ఠ Тод Зенос ан форфар фор 18:40, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

So? Let me start porting articles on sea snails then. TyJFBAA 18:40, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

"The original article was something more suited to an early-stage Wikipedia clone" - Quasi-historical/mythical Jesus wept. There are few biographical details on here, as opposed to articles about certain other historical figures. (And I think Gagarin will be remembered longer than Carl Sagan (pbuh), I'm afraid.) Nothing about Vostok, nothing about his birthplace, nothing about his family, no trashy pop song references... in fact, very little biographical detail at all.

"let's add some jokes for color, and get pedantic with the dates of birth and death" - The day and month of birth were given, I don't know why you consider that "pedantic". There are bad jokes all over this website, in case you hadn't noticed. Some of them are actually funny. (In fact, the Joseph Smith article even quotes one of the "dumbest" jokes from a pretty piss poor TV programme.)

"gee, this guy was the first in space, isn't that cool?" - That wasn't my line at all.

"Anyone "interested to learn about him" could open Wikipedia, or any of the books written about him" - Hence what I've written takes a very different tack from Wikipedia, and focusses on religion, and conspiracy theories. Not to mention Communism and atheism.

As for your other points, I suggest you look at the rest of RationalWiki - there's plenty of pseudo-encyclopaedic material, biographies etc, and rants about the menace of aromatherapy to world security. And a lot about a nutty right wing American wiki. (Probably justified IMHO!) Some of it's good, some of it's not so good. I'm not going to make a blanket statement about it all, but what you're saying about this article certainly contradicts what I see elsewhere on this site. The mission template mentions four items, and I suggest that this article fulfils at least two of them.

I will let you guys get on and discuss the fate of Comrade Gagarin, I don't intend to spend too much more time on this talk page. I'm going to enjoy the rest of the site, and/or do stuff elsewhere.-Albannach (talk) 17:27, 7 March 2013 (UTC)

Landing[edit]

Re: "There are also claims that his flight record was falsified." It's a historical fact that all Vostok spacecraft lacked a soft-landing system. Instead, the cosmonauts were ejected with their seat and landed with a parachute separately from the capsule. That particular detail was kept secret from the Soviet public for quite some time. I am not familiar with how exactly the FAI handled the revelation, but the English version of Gagarin's "record file" is available for download from their website. It's quite amusing to see how it dances around the question of landing in the few places it's mentioned. For example, pages 12-13 describe the Vostok. The numbered list mentions both a "landing system" and "cosmonaut seat", and a note below explains that "If necessary, the cosmonaut can leave the spaceship using this seat." Well, it was necessary - by design. :) The same document also gives fake coordinates of the launch site, which was a part of the military deception policy at the time.--ZooGuard (talk) 16:36, 4 April 2013 (UTC)

I consider it a bona fide flight, but there seems to be a row about this.--Albannach (talk) 16:37, 4 April 2013 (UTC)
Nope, there's no row. He did reach orbit and came back in one piece alive and healthy, it's just that the Soviets were a bit sneaky about the details they provided to the FAI and their own public. As for the legitimacy of the FAI record, it can be decided only by the FAI itself, and they apparently accept it - it's listed on their website.
But "there are claims that his flight record is falsified" is a poor description of the circumstances.--ZooGuard (talk) 16:53, 4 April 2013 (UTC)