Conservapedia:The Zeuglodon Blues
“”I'm certainly not suggested [sic] TK be brought back into this discussion group. Not unless we can be sure he'll keep these discussions confidential; and his hot temper argues against that.
|—Ed Poor, in the thread "Philip Rayment's status" in the 360 folder|
In March 2010, a discussion board of the sysops at Conservapedia was leaked.
Most probably authentic and spanning the time from early 2008 to early 2009, the discussion brings back fond memories of cherished Conservapedian moments. As every reader finds his own nuggets of lulz, feel free to add.
- 1 Common themes
- 2 Andy displays his monumental gullibility
- 3 Quotes by individual users
- 4 Fellow sysops' thoughts about TK
- 5 Lenski affair
- 6 Read your own name
- 7 Plan approved, execution delayed
- 8 Misc. observations
- 9 See also
- 10 External links
- 11 Footnotes
Looking beyond individual discussions, several things came up again and again throughout the year.
The most striking issue was that Andy's personal opinion was explicitly regarded as The Truth. This is why Conservapedia labels itself as a fact-based and trustworthy encyclopedia while at the same time simply being Andy's blog. Not toeing the party line (or even openly discussing with Andy about such things) was viewed as insubordination. TerryH, in particular, seems to have placed Andy in his personal pantheon.
This also resulted in the growing trend that public discussions in general were highly undesirable. Not only was discussing regarded as a waste of time, but some sysops figured that Conservapedia would be able to attract high-ranking conservatives like William Bennett or Ann Coulter if only people stopped questioning obvious truths like Obama using his mind control powers to win the election.
In fact, most CP sysops had a general problem with people who disagreed with their views and described the opposition in ways that would make WW2 propaganda posters jealous: Anybody who disagreed with any of God King Andy's views was a liberal, and when liberals are not busy shoving drugs and aborted babies into family's faces or burning churches, they are trying to force conservatives to think like them. The only group worse than regular liberals are RationalWiki members whose sole goal is to destroy Conservapedia. The war against RW will only be won when one of them is in prison.
Another trend was how the "Sysops are not allowed to undo another sysop's blocks" rule was handled. Sysops were supposed to discuss these things in private or in the discussion group because they wanted to present a united front to the public. Questioning a sysop's decision in public was undermining his authority. Similarly, those who questioned even the strangest blocks were accused of aiding liberals and saboteurs who aimed to destroy the site; new users were regarded as undercover saboteurs until proven otherwise. There were two ways of proving yourself; either by gaining Andy's favor (e.g., noted parodists Bugler and Rod Weathers) or by providing evidence as to one's real identity.
Andy displays his monumental gullibility
Andy explains his reasons for reappointing TK as a sysop during the 01 January 2009 promotions:
TK has ruffled feathers on our side, but mostly on the other side. He's never vandalized the site and his self-initiated "double agent" work (which Philip documents in another thread) was merely that. It was not a sincere effort to harm the site. TK was defrocked by Conservapedia and yet returned to volunteer more, something very few people would do. Our general policy has been to restore privileges to those who make a good faith return and request for them. I've done that in the past as a matter of routine. Given the strong support (Note at least 3 sysops expressed reservations about TK's re-appointment) by several in this group for TK becoming a Sysop again, it seems appropriate. It is needed to protect images. (Our emphasis)
Quotes by individual users
TK: I blocked TimS (CPAdmin1) for being an arguing troublemaker, but I did it with love.
Andy: "Thanks for your kind and considerate comments, Terry". 
From: Judd Gregg
I wouldn't rely on FoxNews, which is not as conservative as it pretends...
From: Tom Moore & Phil Scheur blocking decisions
[Sesame Street] is a show that has long pushed unusual multiculturalism on kids.
Nuggets of Wisdom from Uncle Ed
From "How long are we going to tolerate TK?" (part 1):
Ed: From long experience, I can tell you that they way to shape someone's behavior is not with an axe but with a whip.
From "How long are we going to tolerate TK?" (part 2):
When I taught Sunday School, if I saw two children abusing each other, I rarely punished both. One "time-out" per incident is enough to get the message across: we are here to do class work, not to hurt each other. Sometimes I'd deliberately choose the "less troublesome" of the pair. I don't believe we have to get to the bottom of it; it doesn't matter who started it. I told the kids, if someone in class is hurting you, don't retaliate. Come to me if you need help.
Now I train Sunday School teachers . . .
From "Guidelines Change/Quality of Sources:
On whether books or internet sources are better:
I'm biased in favor of electrons (designed and created by God) and against paper (a man-made invention). But I'll follow the consensus on this one. ;-)
From "Socialist Healthcare Files"
On use of the International Phonetic Alphabet spellings at Wikipedia:
Wikipedia has taken internationalization to such an extreme that it borders on anti-Americanism.
From "Old sysop RobS" 
My concern is that he [Rob Smith] NOT, please dear God, under any circumstances, be brought suddenly into into our private Zeuglodon Blues mailing list. You all remember the trouble we had last time. We cannot afford to have quarrels in this discussion group. That kind of stuff just paralyzes us. And that's why, even when I lobbied for TK's restoration to the project, I always said leave him out of the discussion loop. Rob and TK may be zealous foes of liberal trolls, but they just don't "play well with others" when it comes to discussions amoung [sic] sysops.
From "Inappropriate block by bugler, followed by 'edit warring' over it" 
[Defending Bugler] Let's not jump on the bandwagon of "justice" and "politics of personal destruction" which liberals use to get their way and consolidate their power. Let's see some Christian love and brotherhood around here.
I have a fairly good idea of what is encyclopedic. I have extensive experience in this matter, on two major online encyclopedia projects. One is Wikipedia, which I helped turn into the world's top ten website. Another is the New World Encyclopedia, where I influenced hiring decisions of top management personnel (4 out of the 5 people I recommended are still there). I got the managing editor his job. I trained the area editors, then taught the managing editor's wife how to do this training in my place. I influenced the hiring of the physical science editor, the philosophy editor, and the social science editor.
If deciding what is or is not encyclopedic is a crime, then I plead guilty as charged.
From "Problem with Math entries"
I think that a 760 SAT in math (in high school) qualifies me as a math expert. I have corrected numerous mistakes in our math articles. Some may have been made out of ignorance; others may be deliberate sabotage.
I am suspicious that hardly any one but me has been able to produce an error-free article on any aspect of math below the university level.
From "Curses and insults 
You'd have to be an idiot to think that phrases like "don't be a dick" or "don't be an idiot" are generally considered to be insulting.
wisdom shit from TK
You should never feel obligated to keep re-explaining.
From "The After-effects of RodWeathers and Bugler 
(or why TK doesn't think wiki-admin is necessary)
The "Housekeeping" chores have never been enumerated, or the supposed need for them to be done explained, Jessica. Some of those lists, they appear to be needless "make-work" chores, not important to proper wiki function. and
Most merge candidates I have seen are senseless and a product of our enemies desire to cripple CP. Yes, that is a known method of theirs; confusion and disruption.
From "HelpJazz 
Bill, this place isn't about anyone's differences. They don't matter one bit. This place, and CP, is about Andy Schlafly, and what he wants
From "Fwd: Conservapedia e-mail 
Let's not go deactivating new accounts too quickly, is all I ask.
From:"Inappropriate block by bugler, followed by 'edit warring' over it" 
(With that kind of thinking, no wonder conservatives lead us into things like Enron and the Credit Crunch.)
Geo.plrd: Andy is still the leader of Conservapedia. We serve at his pleasure. He does not have to listen to senior sysops. In business, my way or the highway is the way it works. When your supervisor makes a bad decision, you don't complain about it, because you will be fired.
From:"Massive attack on site"
I guess that the public schools aren't learning people properly. 
Geo.plrd:Is anyone here a psychotherapist? I would be interested in TKs psychological makeup.
Karajou:I remember a Far Side cartoon a few years back, in which the psychiatrist has penciled (sic) in his notepad three simple words about the patient on his couch: "just plain nuts!"
I can't help but think of that right now!
Conservative:TK told me when we had a dispute about search engines that he recently talked to a founder of Google and that I was wrong. Well, I know I was not wrong and I don't believe that TK did talk to a founder of Google. I don't trust TK farther than I can throw him. 
TerryH: "This is TK all over again. In fact...has anyone done an elementary thing like run CheckUser on the TK and Bugler accounts to make sure that those two jokers are not one and the same man?" 
From folder 610, file eafacd8f8
Summary: PJR (notably one of the more intelligent members of Conservapedia by an order of magnitude) has reservations about Andy's letter to Lenski. DanH and TerryH can't imagine what could possibly go wrong, with TerryH proclaiming ironically that evolutionists are so over-confident that they never expect to be discredited. LearnTogether senses that it might be wiser to follow the lead of AiG or other experienced groups. Then Lenski's reply arrives at Conservapedia, creating a shockwave of pwnage which was still measurable on its fourth passage around the earth. Ed Poor reads Lenski's reply and declares victory.
PJR: I noticed that Andy now has ten people willing to "sign" the proposed e-mail to Lenski (see http://www.conservapedia.com/Conservapedia_talk:Lenski_dialog) along with him. A few are familiar names who were discussing the issue before this proposal was made, but others have appeared from almost nowhere, including editors with few or no other posts. (Four have no other edits or their post to this page was their first edit. Another three have few other edits.) Then I found the likely source. On RationalWiki, there is an encouragement to "Sign up now to ensure Andy starts really bothering Prof. Lenski!". They presumably believe, as do I, that the proposed letter will only serve to make Andy and/or Conservapedia look silly. So they want Andy to send the letter. Shouldn't RationalWiki wanting something sound alarm bells about whether or not we should be doing it?
DanH: Do they elaborate on their rationale for wanting us to send the letter/point out what they specifically think would discredit Conservapedia?
TerryH: I wouldn't expect them to. They are so convinced that "evolution" (read: /methodological naturalism/) is "the scientific truth" that they can't imagine that anything could possibly redound to the discredit of anyone except their enemies.
LearnTogether: Personally, if possible, I would recommend that we "piggy-back" with an organization that already has an active presence in the scientific community. Perhaps an ICR, Answers in Genesis, or any other group that deals in these areas on a regular basis. It would certainly give our position more clout, and may help us in the learning curve of understanding what is normally deemed to be acceptable behavior and what is not.
Ed Poor: Lenski's answer was condescending. Much of it amounts to saying, "I already answered those questions before."
A sincerely helpful, genuine scholar would actually answer the questions instead of dodging them. This is typical liberal behavior. It makes Lenski look bad - not us.
PJR: First, what's wrong with saying "I answered those questions before" if in fact he did?
Second, not only did he say something like that, he /also/ gave answers. That's not dodging them.
Third, and perhaps more to the point, your response totally failed to address the point of the message you were replying to. And, for those that haven't noticed, my concerns with some of the signatories have turned out to be well founded, with a number of RationalWiki people registering various user names simply to add their vote to sending the e-mail. Which leaves the alarm bells ringing even louder: Why are we going ahead with doing something that they /want/ us to do, if not because they believe that it will make us look silly.
We should follow the lead of the professional creationists in pointing out that Lenski's research does not support evolution nor disprove creation, rather than pursuing a pointless goal that seemed good at the time. Would you like to see my credentials on why I believe I'm a better judge of this than anyone else here?
Read your own name
The first thing for a man of some vanity is to search for his own name to appear in the discussions...
... only appeared two times, in 490 and 500, when Philip J. Rayment says to Ed Poor: You've been known to misconstrue comments before (e.g. DiEb), and And no, it's fallacious to argue that a legitimate newbie would surely find a way to get in touch with us and convince us of their sincerity. DiEb is an example: He sent numerous e-mails to various people, and got only /one/ response! And even then it took an effort, because we are not inclined to believe people who say that they are innocent!
Mostly a bad memory of CP's ancient past, but every now and then becomes a looming threat at the horizon despite not having raised a finger on CP since his banhammering. As TK speculated in the 230 folder: Remember, the guys there, have several names, like GhengasKahnt/BrianCo, who is also MadMin there, CatWatcher, etc., etc. I am pretty sure Bugler is Sid or Wikinterpreter. Major claim to fame would be the (quickly obsoleted) anti-hack script from the time someone rewrote CP's links. But alas, it looks suspicious with the rw mentions in there as Dean noted in the 530 folder...
From folder 120:
Karajou: "QWest may have shot himself in the foot when he posted that bit of garbage (the Conservapedia hitlist), and if it suggests something worse than political assassination we can go after him. I suggest notifying his ISP as to what transpired. Then I suggest notifying each of the senators on the list, as well as the state governors mentioned in the article."
Followed by TK: "YES. I have no idea how to, but put it into his block to scare him."
In 450;1c70320451ecdedb, Ace McWicked is identified as various "Bill" characters, BillC, BillD, BillE etc. This leads to the quip by Brian MacDonald that Ace "displayed too much of a persistance in getting into Conservapedia under whatever name he can create". Obviously, he may not have noticed the unusable names game.
kara…@gmail.com: I blocked AceMcWicked again, this time under user MrMike. Here is a list of his socks, courtesy of running check user:
MrMike (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (21:01, 18 September 2008 -- 23:21, 18 September 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
AlexM (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (22:48, 16 September 2008 -- 22:59, 16 September 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
JonoP (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (21:28, 15 September 2008 -- 22:15, 15 September 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
ScrewyouKarakjou (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (21:13, 11 September 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
ClarkeD (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (21:00, 25 August 2008 -- 20:11, 10 September 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
PeterSK (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (21:50, 13 August 2008 -- 23:34, 13 August 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
JohnsonB (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (20:58, 12 August 2008 -- 21:01, 12 August 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
FrankMilton (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (22:13, 10 August 2008 -- 22:15, 10 August 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
AlJones (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (21:55, 7 August 2008 -- 21:56, 7 August 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
HaroldB (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (21:27, 6 August 2008 -- 21:28, 6 August 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
AMcW (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (20:51, 5 August 2008 -- 20:55, 5 August 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
AceM (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (22:29, 4 August 2008 -- 22:41, 4 August 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
JohnK (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (18:39, 31 July 2008 -- 18:40, 31 July 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
PeterQ (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (20:04, 29 July 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
JJacob (Talk / contribs / block) (Check) (19:28, 7 July 2008 -- 20:56, 22 July 2008)  (Blocked) 203.xx.xx.xx
As JJacob he did a lot of subtle damage to the site. As Ace in RW he boasts about the damage he has caused or will cause. Again, I implore everyone that has it run check user on every individual who comes into the site.
[Ed. Emphasis added, pipes removed and IP addresses obscured]
Plan approved, execution delayed
- On March 17, 2009, Conservative suggested to install social networking buttons on his pet articles (or the entire site, whichever would have been easier). CPWebmaster and Andy approved, yet one year later, we still can't dig it up.
- Ed suggested at least twice to allow users to edit their own talk page after a block or ban in order to communicate more easily with the blocking sysop and to quickly clarify if there had been an error. But even though it's just a simple option and nobody was against it, the proposal was never implemented.
- Namespaces for essays and debates have been suggested since at least April 2007img (making it older than the Night of the Blunt Knives). In June 2008, the topic was brought up again, and Andy promised to make it a priority. The proposal will soon have its third anniversary withoutimg being set into motion. Although this useful proposal languishes, 8 namespaces were created for the quite useless "Contest"; setting these special namespaces up was actually more difficult than setting up the proposed namespaces, because the contest namespaces had associated user groups and visibility settings.
- Even though mentioning "RationalWiki" in any way on CP is absolutely forbidden, Karajou had planned to dedicate a CP article on it in 2008.
- Another of Karajou's stillborn suggestions was that CP be divided up into various "curriculums", with a sysop heading up each one. Examples included Religion, Christianity (which had to be kept separate from Religion... interesting), Science and History. However, apart from TerryH leaping in a declaring himself "professor and chairman" of the Department of Bible Study, and at least as "adjunct professor" in the Departments of Astronomy/Cosmology and Creation Science nothing happened. 
- The Information Warrior's Handbook was cited frequently and has completely warped the perception of how a trustworthy editor should act. Apparently, because several passages of the Handbook basically instruct socks to act like normal good-faith editors, people who act normally have to be socks and those who don't act normally while still toeing the party line are fine, right? Hilarity ensued, and the fallout included:
- blocking zero-edit users after a certain delay (between 48 hours and some months)
- suspecting HelpJazz to be a deep-cover parodist because he had been helpful and had stuck around for a long time,
- justifying Bugler's blocks even after he had been identified as a parodist, reasoning that - according to the Handbook - socks are supposed to act like good Christian conservatives and not to block innocents.
- Ken made a thread to announce that two atheists have created YouTube videos about his Atheism article and (maybe rightfully) thinks that a video of Andy promoting his pet article would have a brown note effect on atheists. The reaction of his fellow sysops is eccentric even by their own high standards: The discussion instantly turns to THE RAPTURE.
- Filed under "Policy Proposals from Hell", Ed Poor made the suggestion to put all new users on probation and to ban them unless enough sysops approve of them. In the same vein was his suggestion to block them for a month if they don't contribute good content regularly. Nobody reacted to this proposal, likely because CP had already been operating under a much stricter code of conduct: Ban them if at least one sysop disapproves.
- PJR provides a bit of information on how much RW influences CP pageviews - one day, he created two articles. One was mentioned on RW, and two days later had 273 views. The other, un-mentioned article had 11. 
- Karajou - "This user is in violation of 90/10, but he agrees with us. Let's change/ignore the rule."
- Karajou: "Sorry to bust your bubble, Phillip, but when I say so-and-so troll is AmesG, he's AmesG." Sadly, everybody appears to be AmesG.
- Conservapedia:Special Discussion Group
- Conservapedia:Quagga Prime
- Conservapedia:Conservapedia Group
- Conservapedia:Fab Five
- Forum:Latest dump discussion
- At a blog tracking the goings-on at CP, a link to the contents of Conservapedia’s Zeugloden[sic] Blues chat room was made public. One can also go to the direct link provided to access the lulz.
- We are not making this up: 440/a5b1b68361b37119.html - "Saul Alinsky"
- 250/f10bbe861e1bb6aedf1e674aba293b1e.html - 5 new Sysops for the New Year's (sic)
- 890/4dac6491fcdfeaa1.html - Curses and insults
- 10/bbab6bd77513bddf.html - "social bookmarking tags for our most popular articles to get them to rank higher at the search engines - Can the wiki software do it?"
- In 700/939ab810f3e00c69.html ("blocked user", May 2008) and 160/da1b8036a78f06e5.html ("Jp's block of JustSayin", January 2009)
- 590/22b7fe34b449527b.html - "Namespaces"
- 720/af3866c70aac99d9.html - "Ratwiki article"
- 190/f59341e4e6ffa35e.html - "IW handbook & passive socks"
- 290/e86357a5992d81a4.html - "HelpJazz - home for Christmas?"
- 250/f10bbe861e1bb6aedf1e674aba293b1e.html - "5 new Sysops for New Year's"
- 690/9965f2990dd4c665.html - "2 Youtube atheist videos on atheism article. Time for Andy to be unleashed!"
- 510/8cc5729b724ebc20.html - "Probation for all new users"