RationalWiki:Saloon bar/Archive46

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Contents

I saw a sign[edit]

I had to take a leak at the grocery today and they had a hilarious (though unintentionally so) sign in the bathroom. It said, "Please flush only toilet paper down the toilet". I ended up wondering what to do with my shit.--Thanatos (talk) 03:53, 19 December 2009 (UTC)

Roll it up into little balls... ħumanUser talk:Human 04:27, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
The Bible offers a tip. Ezekiel 4:12 "And thou shalt eat it as barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that cometh out of man, in their sight." Yum! --ConcernedresidentAsk me about your mother 16:32, 19 December 2009 (UTC)
Had it been me, I've just left it sitting in the toilet, but that' not a funny solution, is it? Punky Your mental puke relief 13:45, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
There's always the upper deck... Corry (talk) 03:46, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
In a grocery store? Shit, man, I already worry about what's on their employees' hands. Tetronian you're clueless 03:49, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

Twilight[edit]

I just read this series. Absolutely terrible in every way: technically, dramatically, and ethically. I cannot believe parents let their kids read these, much less encourage it.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 01:35, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

"Ethically"? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 02:31, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I quote myself when I say that "Bella needs a man in her life or else she can't function. She may have inherited this from her mother, who on the first page of the novel is depicted as being completely incapable, but who will be okay now that she is remarried to her second husband. In the same way, Bella's life completely revolves around having a man in her life, and she can't exist otherwise." You can read the linked post for a bit more discussion.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 02:41, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Ah, I see. The books flout the party line about women being "independent," celibate, etc. As to your criticism of the writing, channel Harold Bloom on Harry Potter much? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 02:50, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Wait, you forgot to blame the reds! Or is "party line" code for "commies"? ħumanUser talk:Human 03:09, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I don't think I ever read a Bloom critique of Rowling. I actually thought that Rowling was fairly technically adept. I do think she overuses modifiers; no one can ever gaze, they're always calmly gazing or feverishly gazing. But she in any case Rowling is head and shoulders above Meyers.--Tom Moorefiat justitia
Here is the article in question. And her name is rendered Stephenie Meyer, not Stephanie Meyers; I might write articles in tiresome narrative form, but at least I know how to spell. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 03:16, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Hehe, Bloom, he's such a pedantic troll. I bought one of his books once because I needed a doorstop. Yes, he's a well-read, intelligent man. He's also an asshole and a sexist. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:32, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
You're right Listener, I misspelled her name above, although I don't know why you have to be a jackass to me about it. I didn't say anything about things you've written. I think you're confused, by the way: that article is not a critique of Rowling.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 03:34, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I do not think much of Prof. Bloom either. The Boston Globe article was not focused on Ms. Rowling, but insofar as it did mention her it contained complaints about her writing in the same vein as above.
TomMoore, if you are going to beat Ms. Meyer over the head for poor writing skills, I put that you have lost all license to ask that you not be criticized for any shortcomings in that area. And note also that in my remarks about my own writing skills, or lack thereof, I am quoting you directly. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 03:58, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I didn't ask you not criticize me. I just think you're being a jackass about a single error. I did not consistently call her by the wrong name. And even if I had, such jackassery is uncalled for.
It seems, though, that I hurt your feelings in the past. I'm sorry for that. I was probably too harsh; I get carried away easily. Please accept my apology.
So you think Meyer is a good writer and the series is well-done?--Tom Moorefiat justitia 04:05, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I have not read it and cannot comment, but the phrase "one-dimensional characters" is used so often with regard to fantasy (including classics in the field) that it has almost become a cliche.
As a grammar-Nazi I welcome all sorts of criticism of my writing, and do not get hurt feelings about it, so there is no need to apologize. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:18, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I think part of the problem is he was talking about Meyers' ability to write effective fiction, and you reply by attacking a spelling mistake. Hardly one-for-one. --Kels (talk) 04:21, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
The other part of the problem is the fact that it's not really even a spelling error; "Meyer" and "Meyers" are both surnames, and it's very easy to confuse them. Professor Moriarty 10:19, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Now, where have I seen that tactic before?  Lily Inspirate me. 10:06, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
You dawg, I heard you like Bloom so I put Bloom in your Twilight so you could read while you read. Bitches. --User:Theautocrat/Sig 04:39, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I've never read it, but from what I can gather, it's pretty much on par (or below) Ann Rice's trick of "oh, it's so lonely being a vampire. I'm so lonely. Woe. Woe... WWWWWWOE, I tell you!!!!!!!", which I'm sure appeals to some people, particularly those fond of teenage wangst. Scarlet A.pngpostate 09:59, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

Twilight sucks, and so do Twilight fans. Need I say more? The Goonie 1 What's this button do? Uh oh.... 13:55, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

My Life Is Twilight.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 14:10, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
*shudder* Tetronian you're clueless 14:14, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Lots of things suck to those who do not like them. Although we may disagree, people have a right to their own preferences no matter how banal or repulsive we may find them. I can't say that I ever cared for punk. It's when people become so obsessive about a book, film or band so that it takes over their life that I find it odd.  Lily Inspirate me. 14:46, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Kevin Smith knows where it's at. --IN SOVIET CANUCKISTAN, BEAVER DAMS YOU!!!YossarianThe Man from the USSR 08:19, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

RationalWiki Awards[edit]

RWW is considering closing the voting soon, so get your votes in while you still care can. Totnesmartin (talk) 12:04, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

These awards you speak of - where are they again? Lost the link. DogPMarmite Patrol 14:41, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
yer 'tiz, buyh. Totnesmartin (talk) 16:18, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
I'll have to start being more of an asshat so I stand a chance of winning one next year. Scarlet A.pngpostate 19:12, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm not winning the Most authoritarian category? What's wrong with you people? -- Nx / talk 19:19, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
But you are winning "technobrat", which I'd take as an "honourable mention" in the authroitarian category. Scarlet A.pngpostate 19:22, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
It would seem, Nx, that while a few outspoken people accuse you of this, the vast (nearly silent) majority do not see you in this light. Rejoice! (And can you put the hat back.)--BobNot Jim 20:15, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
I've been toying with the idea of adapting the assfly thing in to an angry feedback generator. It might you help you next year Nx. In the meantime, I suggest you slam your nuts in a drawer before replying to anything. Works wonders for authority, but If I were you I'd have a some kids before you try that. --ConcernedresidentAsk me about your mother 20:22, 21 December 2009 (UTC)

WARNING: Dangerous Reptiles![edit]

So, I have owned a pet red-eared slider turtle for about 15 years now, and have never been quite positive of the gender. Therefore, i named it Shelly, so that the name could be somewhat gender-neutral and turtle related. 6 years ago, I met a a lady at the local herptological society that has been taking care of reptiles for 30 years who told me that, because of my turtle's long claws, she was "99 percent certain" that my turtle was a male. Therefore, i changed my turtle's name to Sheldon instead. Well, I had put my turtle in its feeding tank last night and, 6 hours later, came back to find that my turtle, who I thought was a male, had laid eggs in its feeding tank. Ergo, I re-named it Shelly again, and now have a funny reptile story to tell people. The Goonie 1 What's this button do? Uh oh.... 02:52, 21 December 2009 (UTC)

Cool, and some breakfast for you too. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 10:05, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
A few years ago I had a turtle calamity where the turtles that live in the lake in my backyard apparently went wild and decided to plant their eggs in various parts of my freshly tilled garden. Turtles, when provoked, can cause a surprisingly amount of damage,albeit in a very limited vertical swath. Ever since that day I've sworn a vendetta against turtles. It's a low key vendetta and I've haven't really done anything about it yet, but it is a vendetta none the less. One day, some how I'll extract my revenge on turtle kind, Sheldon or Shelly or whatever be damned! Me!Sheesh!Mine! 21:02, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
My grandmother's "boyfriend" (I dunno, live-in partner?) had three tortoises, 2 male one female. The female was more than 100 years old, and suddenly one year she laid eggs (after getting raped by the other two for years, after all, they can't run that fast) which hatched, and then laid more eggs the next year which also hatched. Made the local papers (something about a 100-year old giving birth, with a pic of my, erm, Step-grandad?). CrundyTalk nerdy to me 21:44, 21 December 2009 (UTC)

Tool using octopus[edit]

For those who are into such things, this is a video of an octopus apparently using a tool.--BobNot Jim 13:20, 21 December 2009 (UTC)

Beats the hell out of cow tools, don't it? --Kels (talk) 18:44, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
I think dolphins also use shells and coral as digging tools IIRC. Scarlet A.pngpostate 19:08, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
It seems like just yesterday that I saw some dolphins on TV, using a piece of seaweed as a toy. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 19:35, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
My cats use my wife and I as tools for opening cans. 20:53, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
Shouldn't that be "my wife and me"? Professor Moriarty 21:01, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
Yes. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 21:02, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
Seagulls use gravity and big rocks to smash open crabs. Messy but effective. ħumanUser talk:Human 21:38, 21 December 2009 (UTC)
Kels, nothing beats cow tools. --IN SOVIET CANUCKISTAN, BEAVER DAMS YOU!!!YossarianThe Man from the USSR 07:53, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

Anyone got good OCR software?[edit]

I was thinking maybe we should OCR the scanned version of Hovind's Dissertation to have an annotated side by side (by chapters/paragraphs, of course; it's 100+ page of stuff I can't expect anyone would have the time to type it all up) somewhere. ThiehAsk me for relationship advice 12:07, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

Brief rant[edit]

So I had a patient today who was told by her school nurse that diet soft drinks have more sugar than regular soft drinks, and that the manufacturers lie on the nutrition label. I told her that her school nurse is wrong and that she should tell her as much. It amazes me how people that are supposed to be medical professionals can be so ignorant. With so many people being obese, anybody in preventative medicine should be knowledgeable about diet and nutrition and not spread around stupid bullshit like this. Idiot. (the school nurse, not my patient) Corry (talk) 04:37, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

While I'm skeptical of the claim, I have heard from more than one person that diet sodas are counterproductive in achieving weight-loss; as much or more so than regular sodas. This is of course not the same as having more sugar (which my diabetic friend, if nothing else, could quite easily contradict in his insulin measurements), but that might perhaps be what your patient was referring to, mixing up what the nurse actually said. (On a side note, the fattest guy I know drinks diet soda by the truckload, but that's easily one of those chicken/egg things.) I'll see what I can find about that claim, at least. DickTurpis (talk) 04:45, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Fair point, and we talked about the fact that some studies show that. But she had the notion that the manufacturers publish false info on the nutrition labels. This was a pretty smart girl. Corry (talk) 04:49, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
If the soda companies were printing false information on their nutrition labels, that would be a crime, and it could be proven, I'd suspect, with just a few minutes in a chemistry lab. It is not something that could be easily concealed, and with the number of food watchdog groups out there, they couldn't keep it up for long. Not to mention the numerous lawsuits from diabetics if they were caught lying about sugar content.
But then, as for medical professionals giving bad information, my partner was told by the surgeon who removed his gall bladder that broccoli was loaded with cholesterol, when, in fact, broccoli can help reduce cholesterol. (The surgeon was an asshole, too, but that has nothing to do with the bad information.)
As for overweight people drinking diet soda, I think part of it is a syndrome that could best be summed up by example: "I'll have a Big Mac, a double Quarter Pounder with Cheese, a super-size fries, a twenty piece Chicken McNuggets... and a Diet Coke." People manage to convince themselves that being "good" for one part of the meal makes up for all the "bad" parts. And while I was never a soda drinker, as someone who lost a helluva lot of weight, I know that thought process in general. MDB (talk) 12:05, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Yes, it'd be a major crime to outright lie on labels. Being slightly "flexible" with the truth and how you present it, however, isn't so much a crime and is usually judged on a case-by-case basis by Advertising Standards or whatever (the US, if I remember rightly, has far more relaxed laws on this; in Europe they will take your balls for lying to customers, in America it's considered just playing the game). Whether "diet" drinks are actually better for you is a bit of an issue, of course. High sugar content isn't good for you, but the synthetic substitutes designed to have a lower calorific value may also do other harm. "Diet soft drinks have more sugar than regular soft drinks" and "manufacturers lie on the nutrition label" is outright wrong, however. Did the same nurse then try to sell them some vitamin pills or "natural" remedies to go with that advice? Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:44, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm appalled by the slanderous statements about broccoli. But seriously, how could a doctor think that? It just doesn't make sense: cholesterol isn't found at high levels in anything but animals. And even if this guy has avoided any courses on nutrition or plant biology, why would anyone think that green vegetables, of all things, were high in cholesterol? Broccoli (talk) 17:49, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

Public Image Ltd[edit]

I saw 'em last night at Brixton Academy. A mighty good gig I might add. I took a few phone pics of John Lydon - they came out shit but I will upload them when I get bluetooth working again. SJ Debaser 16:38, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

You really don't need to go to so much trouble. Honestly, we'll take your word for it. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 19:18, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Heh! Diplomatically put, Genghis. I am eating Toast& honeychat 20:01, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

I envy you, you crazy bastard! While these guys may not want an upload, I sure as hell do! Gooniepunk2010 Oi! Oi! Oi! 02:54, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Sounds good to me. I'd be interested. Most of the photos I take at shows are for shit, especially if being jostled around in the pit. Aboriginal Noise Oh, what a lovely tea party! 03:29, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

An disturbing Urban Legend is apparently confirmed.[edit]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kuEWw5Yc7uA&feature=sub This is, more then a little disconcerting. Ryantherebel (talk) 16:22, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Japan[edit]

Just watching NHK telly: midwinter (christmas) program; presenters: Guy in thick coat, girl in micro mini skirt & stockings (admittedly probably quite thick). It's the same the whole world over! I am eating Toast& honeychat 20:56, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Words[edit]

Repetition of a word can make it totally nonsense: I now can't believe that "collapse" is a real word after following Nx round his edits. (Just sayin') I am eating Toast& honeychat 02:25, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

Ha ha, I was thinking the same thing except for the word "Forum". Tetronian you're clueless 03:18, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
So it's not just me that gets into an existential crisis by repeating a word enough times so that it loses all meaning. Read through some of the stuff on Arsebook and it happens with the word "friend" very quickly. Does anyone know why this happens?!? Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:46, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Sometimes I will look at a commonplace word and think how weird it is; so I do get where you're coming from, Toast. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 19:21, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
I have no idea why. Maybe Trent knows....? Tetronian you're clueless 19:23, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm relieved that it's not just me doing this. I go through phases where the spelling of a word seems totally odd, and I find it difficult to believe that the spelling is correct, even though I know it is. --ConcernedresidentAsk me about your mother 19:27, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
May the gods bless the almighty Google and Wikipedia. The phenomenon is called Semantic satiation. Not a brilliant WP article, but at least we now know what it's called. Scarlet A.pngpostate 23:08, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
What did you google to find that for drake's sake? I am eating Toast& honeychat 23:14, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
"repeating words loses meaning" or something like that. I find that, with the Internet, the question you ask has probably been asked before. So even if you don't know the specific words or wording, just stick in what you know and have a quick look. 95% of the time it works fine like that. Scarlet A.pngpostate 00:06, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
Tell me more about this 'Internet' of which you speak - it sounds like a most useful item. Can I get an Internet shipped to me from a catalog store? DogPMarmite Patrol 01:21, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
I fear, young DogP, that you've probably left it too late to obtain one from Saint Nicholas now. Ask for an internet for your birthday, someone might purchase one for you. (It's only available "online" by the way) I am eating Toast& honeychat 02:06, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Sad to see people dumped on Avatar here[edit]

I thought it rocked. Saw it in 3D with the glasses. And TBH looking at the trailer I thought "this mocap cgi will never work, this is blue Jar Jar Binks" and I walked out of the theater thinking the CGI alien performances were more expressive and believable than live action. Despite a below average plot and a well below average script, this movie is... something amazing. Not a movie, an experience? A visceral visual experience. Something like that :) See it. WodewickWelease Wodewick! 09:22, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

I don't think anyone's criticizing its visual effects. They're criticizing the fact that it sacrifices things like story and theme as a result of focusing on special effects too much. Tetronian you're clueless 13:44, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
I've not seen it yet, but the impression I got from the trailer was that the entire plot was already in the trailer, like a below-average chick flick, and that the characterisation is all in 2D, despite the rest of the film being 3D. For my winter blockbuster "experience" I think I'm more interested in Sherlock Holmes, as it just looks more fun than Avatar. User:Bondurant14:47, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
So the question here is, was it a pretty spectacle or a good movie? "Despite a below average plot and a well below average script..." isn't exactly a ringing endorsement of the latter. --Kels (talk) 17:00, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
Most Hollywood studio films do not have great stories or great scripts. Most movies are carried by acting. My only concern about Avatar was that animating everything in CG would destroy the acting element as it has for so many CG films thanks to poor animation and/or the uncanny valley - especially since it was trying to be the first photorealistic-CGI-protagonists film. That concern was obviated by the movie itself. "The trailer is the movie" movies don't have to be bad, after all recent examples of these movies include Titanic, The Dark Knight, Up, Pirates OTC, etc.
The Sherlock Holmes movie looks like a crapsack action movie that someone, at some point in the script rewrie process, decided to emboss with the Sherlock Holmes brand. I didn't get the slightest sense that RDJ was Holmes or that the movie was taking place in the 1890s. WodewickWelease Wodewick! 22:21, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
Not being Jeremy Brett is enough to disqualify RDJ as Holmes in my mind. --Kels (talk) 17:10, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

merry holiday!![edit]

Xmas comes early in my part of the world..Aceof Spades 11:52, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

All the staff at McWicked Co. wish you a merry christmas.
Only two bottles (and a possible third hiding back there on the right), one of which is a Corona? You're slipping, man. --Kels (talk) 16:59, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
The whole shebang is perched on top of three cases of cheap rum. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:12, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Speaking of the season... --Kels (talk) 03:37, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Happy hols eveyone. I'm about to tuck into an awesome looking turkey cooked by the sister & brother in law. Oh, and lager, of course. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 12:28, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
Happy Birthday Baby Jesus! Here's a present for you in honour of your greatest fan. Beats gold, frankincense and myrrh any day.
Hic! Hic! Auld Nick (talk) 12:46, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

NORAD tracks Santa[edit]

I find this hilarious. Not sure why. Tetronian you're clueless 13:31, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

They've been doing that for a few years now, I think. Do you think Google will do their own? It's right up their street on holiday pranks and "easter eggs". Scarlet A.pngpostate 16:42, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
Ah, of course. The NORAD one also has a Google Earth plug in, they seem to be way ahead of me! Scarlet A.pngpostate 16:43, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm going to groom my kids into being Santa apologists, equipped with evidence like this and a bottomless sack of rationalizations. Then I'm going to wait and see if and how they reconcile their beliefs with reality. Then I'm going to hold it over their heads for the rest of their lives. "Remember when I had you believing in Santa Claus until you were almost 18? Yeah, that's right, YOU'RE MY BITCH. Don't ever forget that. Love you."— Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 16:53, 24 December 2009 (UTC)


I will be go to hell[edit]

Apparently Jesus and Santa have something in common after all! --Kels (talk) 20:28, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

Damn, that's awesome. --Sid (talk) 21:58, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

3AM 25 Dec 2009[edit]

Have a nice day, everyone. I am eating Toast& honeychat 02:58, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

4:02pm 25 Dec 2009 here. Drinking a beer sent from Crundy and feeling pretty pleased by the whole shabang. Aceof Spades 03:03, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
10:04pm 24 Dec 2009. Hoping the freezing rain and icy roads scheduled for tomorrow morning doesn't keep me from making my rounds. Aboriginal Noise Oh, what a lovely tea party! 03:07, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
22:41 24 Dec 2009 Drinking coffee and posting here. FlareTalk 03:09, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

National Geographic[edit]

PalMD might get into print now that ScienceBlogs & NG have teamed up. just the one link: it's all over, over there I am eating Toast& honeychat

The big times at last! CЯacke®
? - π 09:21, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

We have another Republican to hit golf balls at[edit]

I just created Carly Fiorina. Feel free to add crazy things she's said, some classic fuckups she did at HP, or anything else of interest.

Cheers, The Wine of TyrantsDrunk with power again!09:21, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

[edit]

Extensive discussion moved to Forum:Festive_logo- π 09:21, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Must we vote on everything?[edit]

Moved to Forum:Must we vote on everything?- π 09:21, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Six days left and I'm still uncomfortable calling them the "ohs", "aughts" or "noughties". How about you?[edit]

Civic Cat (talk) 17:16, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

Someday we will look fondly back on the times we had in the Year Nine. If it was good enough for Jack Aubrey, that should suffice. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 17:19, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
I look fondly back at Au Revoir Simone here. Sounds so much like OMD.
:-D
Civic Cat (talk) 18:03, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
"Naughties" works for me. ħumanUser talk:Human 00:00, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm undecided, it works, but it's crap. I did hear "tennies" said on TV a couple of days ago, perhaps the start of something semi-official, but the guy did cringe with self depreciating irony as he said it. What the fuck did people do this time 100 years ago? And imagine the issues with doing it in base 16... Scarlet A.pngpostate 00:36, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
The first decade of any century tends to get conveniently forgotten about, at least partly because it's so awkward to refer to. Nobody talks about the "nineteen-noughties". If they need to talk about that decade at all, they usually say "early 1900s" or "turn-of-the-century era" or some such. In time, people will find some similar phrases for this decade. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 00:42, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
IMHO "aughts", "noughties", and "ohs" are all awful names. We'll probably just end up calling it the "first decade" or some similar cop-out. Tetronian you're clueless 04:02, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Corporate/political Christmas cards[edit]

This truly appalling Christmas e-card from the UK Border Agency was circulated at work recently, to great hilarity. (I don't work for the UKBA, but my employer is an immigration sponsor; apparently the UKBA sent this out to a lot of organisations). The idea of putting serious government PR in the form of a greeting card is bizarre, creepy and just plain ridiculous. My favourite part is "we are getting stricter on those who don't play by the rules", just a couple of lines up from "Seasons Greetings and a Happy 2010". So, did anyone else get any horrible workplace &/or propaganda Christmas greetings they'd like to share? WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:30, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Just their way of telling Mary and Joseph there's no room at the inn. They'll just have to stay in some makeshift hovel in France. Auld Nick (talk) 18:43, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
Wow, that card is just plain bizarre. No, I've never seen anything remotely that stupid. I don't get as many as I used to, but I used to get xmas cards from numerous suppliers, and all they ever were was nice greeting/xmas/holiday wished cards. ħumanUser talk:Human 20:55, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
Oh, and I used to get xmas cards "from" Al Gore & family, and they were just nice cards, too. ħumanUser talk:Human 20:56, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
That's pretty f****d up... I got a "corporate" card from the uni I applied to for next year, but it was just the usual message and pretty nice really. UKBA is just very surreal and vaguely facist in everything it does, IMHO. --TheEgyptiansig001.png 23:30, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
I don't think there's anything particularly appalling or fucked up about it, but hell it's funny for the wrong reasons. Scarlet A.pngpostate 00:09, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Yule goat[edit]

Now my Christmas is complete. Tetronian you're clueless 05:12, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

I love it - goats and vandalism all rolled up into one famous best of the public effort! — Unsigned, by: human / talk / contribs 05:23, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

How did we fare out?[edit]

Just curious about what some of us got stuffed in our stockings. Right now I am alternating between Assassin's Creed 2 and Koushun Takami's Battle Royale--Thanatos (talk) 03:04, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Well, most of the people around me either don't do Xmas or are too poor to do Xmas, so the only physical presents I got were from my mom who insists. The usual mostly, a blouse that doesn't fit, art supplies I don't use, a watch that doesn't go with anything I have, and jewelery that's actually not bad. The watch is sort of a running thing, she always gets a watch, every time, even though I don't actually wear watches. However, she surprised me this year by getting me an iPod Nano. NOT something I expected in the least, although it's appreciated. Certainly more appreciated than the non-intuitive pain in the ass that Apple gave me for a setup of the iPod and iTunes, which I totally don't want but apparently have no choice. Thanks Apple, for making me waste so much time figuring out how to use your crap. --Kels (talk) 03:12, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
A nice dinner with my family--haven't seen them for a year...TheoryOfPractice (talk) 03:23, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
I had a 4-hour discussion with my stepmom's stepdad about Ayn Rand (he's an Objectivist), evolution (he doesn't beleive in macroevolution), and UFOs (he believes in that Zecharia Sitchin crap). So I got to show off everything I learned here on RW in front of my family. That alone was an awesome gift. Tetronian you're clueless 03:27, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
It was over freezing, with "weather" promised soon. So I tried to bust up the glacier in my parking lot with my plow a bit. I also watched Total Recall. Is that what Kristmuss is for? ħumanUser talk:Human 04:48, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
At Tet, wow, that sounds like... fun? ħumanUser talk:Human 04:49, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
At Kels, well, at least she cares and tries? Amusing though how the endless useless shit get bought and given. At TOP, good times (I hope). ħumanUser talk:Human 04:50, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Twas much fun. Few things are more fun than talking about teh crazy with family. Tetronian you're clueless 05:01, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
She tries and cares and I love her for it. The watches are like a running joke that we never actually say out loud, it's been going for years, and if I can't use a gift I usually know someone who can so it's all good. Less love for Apple, though. --Kels (talk) 05:20, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Thought of you northerners as I munched on turkey & gammon, sitting next to the pool. Fared pretty well - Father Ted box-set, District 9 DVD, pirate copies of Franklyn and Nine, Donnie Darko, socks (*sigh*) and a Haruhi wall-hanging, of which I'm kinda proud and ashamed at the same time. (PS Battle Royale = very good, avoid the sequel). --PsygremlinSiarad! 10:39, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Actually, I got the novel. I kinda like to imagine Andy tearing into it, going on about how it is a liberal attempt to use lifeboat ethics. (PS Haruhi Suzumiya? Could it be there is another fan onsite?)--Thanatos (talk) 02:15, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
I got six new white handkerchiefs. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 14:00, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
That means you can get married six times! --Kels (talk) 15:47, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Once is twice too many. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 17:46, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

I got a much needed fridge. I also got The Post-American World, and I have to say, receiving a Christmas present is an odd way to find out you're actually a Muslim. DickTurpis (talk) 02:38, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

Pussy power[edit]

#2 cat has just come in rather the worse for war: clawed face & shoulder. t'other ½ is tending to him: most amusing: he's wrapped, nay tied, in a towel (which will never again be usable) while she trims and mops his fur. I am eating Toast& honeychat 02:17, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

Gawd, I had a cat who went through everything - skunks, porcupines, and his own endless murder spree. And a $350 or so dental appointment. He disappeared, as most of them do, probably trying to kill a badger or something. I hope yours is well soon enough. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:56, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Skunk I have seen & cetera, possums and coons been seen marching around, even thought I saw porcupine tooth marks (seen AFOAL of beaver tooth spoor) but badgers? Не знаю. If the cat hasn't withdrawn from human ken, it most likely means to keep on being part of the scene, so worry is useless. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 07:00, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Skunk I have washed off the cat; never seen a possum, have seen 'coons climb walls. I fight an annual battle with the porkies, since they love to devour spring tree bark, especially my willow. Have seen a badger walk past my kitchen door (a young one) and there's a den out in the woods. Badgers are fucking mean, and a cat, no matter how tough, is no match for an adult badger. Not sure how they'd do against the local foxes, but squirrels are pretty much cat toys. And then there's the deer... a different game all together. ħumanUser talk:Human 07:07, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
If you've not seen a possum then you've been looking elsewhere at exactly the right time. Country breezeways or town streets are equally welcoming. Just like rats only bigger and with sweet gnarly faces. If they can't run away they really do go catatonic, and none of your persuasions will avail. My mom used to hang soap and human hair clippings in the veggie garden to try and keep the deer away. Just you try and keep them away. Hah. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 07:18, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
For deer I have considered purchasing some largely defensive weapons of food-shootin'. I've come face to face with a big doe outside my kitchen door, bucky and three chillun-deer were busy chewing the scenery. Pow, pow, powpowpow and I could have had 400 pounds of freezer fodder. ħumanUser talk:Human 07:24, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Me and my brothers had hamsters growing up at various points in our childhoods. The last one I had died in 2003 (I think it was then) from wet tail disease which is kinda like the hamster equivalent of bowel cancer. That same year I got two goldfish and kept them in the same bowl. After five days one of them died. Nearly SEVEN YEARS LATER the other one is STILL ALIVE. Now as a uni student and grown man I'm pretty fucking sick of being welcomed home by a stinky goldfish bowl. I might get a dog when I get my own place. SJ Debaser 13:07, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Get a cheap ten-gallon aquarium and a cheap air-driven filter that allows you to use carbon and some foam. Don't worry about gravel and shit like that yet. Pour entire contents of smelly goldfish bowl into aquarium, add a little more water that has been "aged" each day. Buy nice cheap aquarium light, add bubbling diver and a pretty piece of rock. Watch goldfish double in size in three weeks. PS, don't overfeed. A tiny pinch a day is enough. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:57, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Let's fucking condemn this place![edit]

Or at least use it only for trivial matters. Thanks to Nx the forum looks awesome, and it is probably a much better place for the enormous threads that develop here. Though I love the SB and I look forward to reading more of the miscellaneous discussions that will happen here, I think we should relish in the opportunity to use the new sandbox Nx has made for us. Tetronian you're clueless 03:49, 23 December 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, but you "kill the SB" people are ignoring that we never know when a thread will be "big" or trivial. The SB is where this stuff should start, big threads get moved to the forum. What happened to the thread above where I described and argued this case? Tet, many threads here only run for two comments and one day. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:05, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
Agreed, but I still think that when starting a serious thread (or at least one that the poster knows will create enormous interest) we should first look to the forum. I don't think we should accelerate the afterlife for kill the SB, just use it a bit less now that we have something better. Tetronian you're clueless 04:08, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
"one that the poster knows will create enormous interest" - there is no way of knowing that in advance. I have started threads that I thought would be awesome, only to get no comments. People make offhand comments, and the thread turns into Godzilla. Do you see my point? Start here, cut/paste top forum after some level of interest and editing? ħumanUser talk:Human 04:13, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
There's nothing wrong with starting a thread on the Forum that gets no replies. In fact the advantage of the forum is that threads are easier to resurrect, whereas on the SB if it drops off, you have to copy it back. -- Nx / talk 17:05, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
(EC) Tetronian (obviously not your real name), intolerance for the saloon bar is typical of deceitful liberal trolling. Wikipedia doesn't allow articles about the saloon bar because it is run by liberal atheists. I have looked at you recent edits, and it appears that you believe (contrary to evidence) that Gawd did not create the saloon bar when, in fact, Gawd did. Continuing to fill our pages with such lies will earn you a block. Godspeed! The Goonie Punk Can't sleep, clowns will eat me! 04:17, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
@Huw: I see your point and I suppose that is the best method. Although I think in that case the size of this page will only be slightly lessened. But whatever, you're probably right. Tetronian you're clueless 04:21, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
Thanks... hopefully people will learn to recognize the Godzillas early on and move them to the forums? Perhaps down the road we will also learn to start "light and trivial" sections here, and "serious for the ages" threads at the fora. During transition is a difficult time to predict the future. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:18, 23 December 2009 (UTC)
At the moment, it's a judgement call on behalf of the person starting the new topic. I'm happy to leave it up to them to decide. I'll certainly check both, it's not particularly difficult considering I already have 2-3 email accounts, RW, a forum or two, DeviantART and Arsebook to check (and this is a lull in my Internet forum whoring activity). So this isn't a problem to add another half a place to check. Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:00, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
See Forum:Do_you_prefer_this_or_the_Saloon_bar?#Suggestion.2Frequest -- Nx / talk 17:05, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
This place suits me better than that forum place. I think the forums would be a good place for SeriousWiki:SeriousBusiness and this place can be for kicking back and bullshitting. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 17:02, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
EC) Example of something that should be here rather than there. I am eating Toast& honeychat 17:04, 24 December 2009 (UTC)
Please don't encourage Hoover to hang out here. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 17:06, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

Forum contents box[edit]

I stuck in the DPL Nx wrote to test drive it at the top of the SB, hopefully between the TOC and chalkboard for most screens. It probably needs some tweaking, but what do people think, in general? ħumanUser talk:Human 22:32, 24 December 2009 (UTC)

They don't line up with each other but they look good to me. I think we need to do something with the top of the bar. It's nice and "quirky" and all, but it's very intrusive and looks a bit on the messed up side. Scarlet A.pngpostate 00:42, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
I like. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 00:52, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm glad it's there, and glad you guys approve, and yes, it would be really nice if it were the same distance from the bartop as the chalkboard. A single br/ was too much space. I think the bartop is bit taller than it needs to be. I also considered pasting the DPL list into the chalkboard, but I didn't want to muck it up too much. One last comment, the way I did it was to simply paste in the whole DPL segment, really it should be in a subpage or template and then transcluded. ħumanUser talk:Human 23:12, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
I removed that whitespace, but Pibot added it back. hopefully the way I changed it now won't break after Pibot edits it again. Anyway what are we going to do with the Saloon bar? I have suggested making it a stickied thread in the General discussion forum. This would involve moving the Saloon bar and its archives to the Forum namespace. Forum:Saloon bar test is how it would look with the forum thread header template. In this case we could remove the forum toc. -- Nx / talk 00:04, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Leave it as it is. I am eating Toast& honeychat 00:12, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
It'll be good to integrate the SB into the forum structure, but I reckon it would be nice at the top of the list practically in its own category, rather than looking like a "sticky". And providing the sidebar link still works and the redirects that are set up to direct to it change accordingly, I don't think people will even notice the difference. Scarlet A.pngpostate 00:56, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Right now the way it is seems to be functional. Let's let some more time pass - especially busy time, the holidaze are slow - and see what tweaks are needed. ħumanUser talk:Human 03:21, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

I think part of the layout difficulty is that the chalkboard thing is called up by "bartop", making it harder to prettify things. Also, of course, the pibot template eats up some space. Can we perhaps integrate all these things into bartop so it is one simple block at the top? Maybe bartop has too much clutter? ħumanUser talk:Human 05:54, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

If we give it some time, a week or so into the new year and review it. Clearing up the bartop would be a good thing to do if we merge it into the forumspace. I'm in favour of doing that; as I noted above, it won't make much practical difference as all the redirects to it will change accordingly and it will look and act the same; it'll just chance namespace and have a link to it on the forum thread list. It would also make it easier (from a "do we want to" angle, rather than a technical angle) to split bits off. Scarlet A.pngpostate 18:18, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Can we add the last edit date/time in small font after the thread title? ħumanUser talk:Human 22:30, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Done, and I've added a different background for watched threads with new edits. -- Nx / talk 23:08, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Excellent, thanks! Now to go see if I can figure out how you did that... ħumanUser talk:Human 00:14, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

The "Cloward-Piven strategy"--anyone familiar with this?[edit]

OK, I know this op-ed piece is more than a year old, but apparently it has been making the rounds on various right-wing blogs. This, my friends, is the new right-wing narrative of the financial crisis. Hell, even Wikipedia has a page on it (though sanitized of most of the conspiracy stuff).

Enjoy. --Wet Walnuts (talk) 07:39, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Very interesting. Artikal we kan haz perhaps maybe? ħumanUser talk:Human 08:14, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
I have yet to see any version of Cloward and Piven's article online. You could check JSTOR or EBSCOhost if you have access to it. (I do, through the Rutgers University Library, so maybe I will look for it later). I don't think there are any free versions of it though. --Wet Walnuts (talk) 09:05, 25 December 2009 (UTC)
I think I meant can we make an RW article on it? ħumanUser talk:Human 23:21, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
When you say that WP has an article but sanitised the conspiracy aspects, it sounds like a prime candidate for an RW article (although I confess I haven't finished reading it all yet, my instinct says "hell yes"). Scarlet A.pngpostate 23:44, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

OK, I started an article on this: Cloward-Piven strategy. It is based on the current text of the Wikipedia article, so feel free to edit it mercilessly. I will add some more material later. --Wet Walnuts (talk) 17:18, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

'Tis the season....[edit]

Thanks to this lovely strain of winter weather in the midwest, my flight back to Minneapolis arrived at 11:00 CDT this morning; 14 hours after scheduled arrival!!! The Goonie Punk Can't sleep, clowns will eat me! 20:35, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

Did you hear about the Eurostar shizzle over here in the week before Christmas? People were stranded on both sides of the channel cos the trains got cancelled due to the weather conditions, which were largely snow-related. SJ Debaser 22:53, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Amazingly, it's been raining for the past 3 days here in New Jersey, but today was a beautiful day and it was warm out. I just don't get it. I pity you people who get more than 10 inches of snow each year. Tetronian you're clueless 22:58, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
I am currently back home in Soviet Canuckistan and am reading with dismay news reports about 3-4 hour and longer delays b/c of post-last-bit-of-badness-enhanced-security-measure. I have a flight home in a few days with a connection in Chicago that I have a half-hour to make. No way am I making it. TheoryOfPractice (talk) 04:21, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
All the global warming shit IMHO. We've fucked up the planet enough and now we have to clean up the mistakes our ancestors made. Of course, some people can't be asked with this. SJ Debaser 01:39, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
"Asked"? Did you mean 'arsed'? Or is this a young persons' neologism that I am unfamiliar with? Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 10:29, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm never sure if people are saying 'arsed' or 'asked.' I typed 'asked' in this scenario, though 'arsed' was probably more sensible. However, it was 12.40AM and I was exhausting because I'd been drinking all evening. SJ Debaser 12:28, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

What the fuck happened?[edit]

(Sorry for the long post. This is all hitting me just now.)

May parents are getting divorced.

There has been no screaming, no threats, no fighting, no lawyers—no indication of anything. Mom and Dad are handling it the same way they've always handled everything—quietly and austerely (maybe that's why everything went wrong in the first place?).

What am I supposed to say? What am I supposed to feel? Am I supposed to feel angry? Guilty? Because I don't. I don't know what normal people are supposed to say. I want to say to Mom and Dad that they will always be my Mom and Dad, even if Dad lives in the next town over, and that I will always be their son. Can I tell Dad that I'm impressed with how mature he's been about it—admitting it's entirely his fault, and promising that he'll still support all of us even when he's no longer living with us? Can I tell Mom to please stop apologizing—that I trust her to know what's best for them, so she can stop second guessing herself?

Check that—I guess I do feel something; I feel unhappy (for lack of a better word). See, over the past thirteen years, Mom and Dad have worked their way up from being part of the "working poor" into solidly middle class territory. They progressed from having one crappy, dying car, living in the cheapest house available for rent (no one would loan them money to buy one) in the dumpiest part of a small town in the poorest region of Oregon, with no money and working several jobs at a time, to having two new cars, owning (!) a nice, new house, and each having relatively flexible, well-paying jobs. And their children are growing up. Their oldest child may not be financially comfortable, but he is independent, and clearly has big things ahead of him. Their middle child is finally wising up and has made his first major steps toward getting out of the unending shitstorm rat race that was his life. I'm preparing to go to college, and to live on my own. Everything was getting better. In a decade or so, they could even retire, and maybe even live comfortably for the rest of their lives, and be loved by their three wonderful, grown kids, and maybe even grandkids. We were living the American Dream—that with hard work and discipline, you can make a better life for yourself. Now what—does the American Dream include your marriage going down the shitter, too?

It was supposed to be perfect, it was going to be perfect, and now it's not.

What the fuck happened? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 03:46, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

They outgrew each other? They spent 20-odd years kicking ass and taking names, and giving you kids a better life than they had, and doing that job leaves precious little time for "staying in love" or whatever that is. Oh shit, that sounds like I'm blaming you kids. I'm not. It was what they wanted to do, that their intimacy or closeness got lost along the way... was sadly typical. I hope that in the long, and even short, term, they will be best friends, after all, they shared so much. It's still "perfect" - you have two parents who love you and care for you and want the best for you, and can even probably help you get to where you want to be in life. They just aren't husband and wife any more? Maybe I'm not the best "counsellor" here because 1) my parents are still together (although I'm sure they've been through plenty of shit) and 2) I never parented, just, well, dated a lot of divorced women... Anyway, Jacob, while RW might not be the best place to ask your question, you're doing the right thing by asking it. Do you have friends with divorced parents, etc.? Reach out to them as well. Everything will be ok. Nothing is ever "perfect". ħumanUser talk:Human 04:02, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Aw, man, RA, that well and truly sucks. It's probably your fault for being such a rotten kid. Sorry to hear the bad news--but hell, you may be in the minority among people your age (...and BTW, I thought you were well into your twenties for some reason) in having your folks together at this point in your life. It strikes me that as much as this does suck, we as a society have gotten better at making the process easier for everyone involved--much more so than when Huw or I were your age, anyways. Anyway, as the old man above said, it'll be okay in the long run for everybody. My divorce damn near killed me, but it wasn't too too long before I got over stuff and really turned my life around. You're young and resiliant--you'll bounce back. TheoryOfPractice (talk) 04:16, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Right now you don't need to be told that life goes on, so I won't. You will find that others who have been through it understand a bit better than the ones who have not. Divorce is well known to be a crazy time, and I hope you can make it through with a level head. One breath out, another one in; sometimes that's all you need. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 04:46, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
First of all nobody knows what really happens in someone else's relationship, particularly if the couple have any sense of privacy. Most of the disagreement is either unspoken or goes on behind closed doors. I don't know what age all your siblings are but couples often stay together for the kids and if the kids are grown up enough then maybe they can finally get the divorce that they have probably wanted for a long time. Romantic love can overcome differences for a certain amount of time but relationships change as the individuals change (or conversely, they do not change). I have known many people who lived together for years then decided to get married and find their relationship break down in a very short period; the dynamics of the relationship changed. It is hard to place blame on any individual because even if they say it's all their fault they may only be doing that to smooth the process. Getting divorced isn't any fun, especially after many years together. So if they can do it in an amicable way and remain friends afterwards then treat that as a consolation. What we may think of as an ideal situation is often only transitory. At least you are still going to have relationships with both of them. It may happen that those relationships lead to something else as yet unknown for your parents and even members of your family. Hopefully your parents can find new happiness and fulfillment which had been missing. It is better that they separate amicably rather than grow old together living with resentment and bitterness. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 10:46, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Hmm... were both of your parents conservative? Sorry to hear that RA, I know it's not easy. While I myself can't relate, a lot - and I truly mean A LOT - of my friends have divorced parents, so you're not alone. My best mate's parents got separated when we were about 13 totally out of the blue - my friend dealt with it fairly OK, his whole family still gets along, and he still sees his dad a fair old bit. Another person I know had her parents divorce just this summer - they, like your parents, waited 'til she was going to university, as they told her a couple of weeks before she left. As someone in your age group, and someone that started university this year, let me tell you from first hand experience that it's a great way to escape problems in the outside world. SJ Debaser 12:13, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
I was reading an article about how adults are affected when their parents divorce. You have plenty of help for young kids and plenty of sympathy but when you're a bit older or possibly left home, everyone just expects you to man-up and deal with it and see it for what it is, a separation that doesn't negate what your parent's feel about you or destroy the past completely (which is probably what Human is getting at above; please don't join the Samaritans, it'll be Lemming Tuesday all over again...). So when your're over 18 (hell, over 15 half the time) and it happens few people seem to sympathise as few people experience it at that age and just expect you to roll with it the same way as if you heard they were buying a new car - and that's just unfair really. So be angry, shocked, annoyed or whatever, you have a right to do that whether you're 13 or 30 when your parents split, but you have to reach the same conclusion regardless of your age; accept it as their decision, for the best, and that it's no reflection on you. And I doubt you're letting the American Dream down the shitter, you're just experiencing part of what modern culture has, get them a divorce cake or something if they're in the spirits to handle it. You're lucky it seems mutual and fairly peaceful, though; I got woken up at 3AM by the shouting match that split my parents up permanently (I was just on the verge of being old enough to "deal with it"), which wasn't particularly fun. Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:29, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Nothing is ever perfect. When things are going smoothly and all is looking good , something nasty is about to happen, thats just the way things work. Its possible that with a seperation your parents will establish a new relationship and decide to stay together. Its also possible that the split will let them stay on friendly terms and get on with the rest of their lives. The important thing is for you to realize that in any relationship BOTH people bear some responsibility for what happens. Try to stay out of arguments and focus on getting your life going in a good direction. You may need to try for more financial aid, scholarships or part time work to make it all work. Good luck Hamster (talk) 18:44, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

NephilimFree[edit]

Hey, currently in a debate with NephilimFree in the comments section of one of my youtube videos, and he's trying to Gish Gallop on me. He made one claim, and I'm not sure where to look to find refuting evidence. He says that 80% of human proteins don't exist in apes (debate here: http://www.youtube.com/comment_servlet?all_comments&v=eiTGxTl3dAk ).--Mustex (talk) 07:09, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

That is not even wrong. Humans would have that many proteins in common with plants I would suspect. - π 10:09, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Depends on the metric you use. If you're talking about exact structural match-ups then I'd say he might be right. There's slight differences between dehydrogenase in slugs and dehydrogenase in humans, for example, this is just what evolution does and citing it as evidence against evolution is outright stupid. However, if you use types of protein, or a less rigorous match up process looking only at tertiary strucutre and ignoring the odd amino acid out of place outside the core centre of the protein, then they're practically identical in most animal species - we'll all have particular enzymes to do particular functions. In wildly different species, they could be wildly different (haemocyanin, haemerythrin, haemoglobin), in very similar species, they may have very similar structures. But the best thing to do is to ask for the reference for "80% of human proteins don't exist in apes" - because the mornon is either talking out of his arse or using evidence for evolution against it. Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:16, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
I once spent 2 weeks trying to get NF to admit that different breeds of dogs had different shapes, and therefore different morphologies. In my most recent encounter, I challenged his claim that American Indian tribes across the continent had a universal greeting gesture. This time, he readily admitted that he had pulled the claim out of his ass...in his own creepy, condescending way. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 15:45, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
He's also trying to claim that EQs prove that humans and apes can't be related (he cited an article on that, which I need to get off my ass and look up later today, but I find it hard to believe that anyone could suggest that the ratio of brain size to body size could disprove the relatedness of two species).--Mustex (talk) 18:00, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
No, you can't particularly do that with brain sizes. One of the things that sets humans apart from others is the extended brain power. That'd be like saying that a golden labrador and a chocolate labrador can't both be dogs because they have different colour coats; that's the major difference that differentiates them. Indeed, brain size and power can evolve at such a pace that of course they're going to be vastly different. Scarlet A.pngpostate 18:06, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Found on FoxNews.com comment section.[edit]

Regarding sanctions on Iran someone posted this nugget....

OBAMA ..... OH SO FEMININE...... C...U...N...T

Charming. Aceof Spades 08:00, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

Back[edit]

What did I miss? Totnesmartin (talk) 10:02, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

Nothing really, not a lot goes on over Christmas. SJ Debaser 12:29, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

Anyone read/heard of this dreadful sounding thing?[edit]

Sounds pretty much like the linguistic version of creationism. --IN SOVIET CANUCKISTAN, BEAVER DAMS YOU!!!YossarianThe Man from the USSR 11:23, 27 December 2009 (UTC)

More like a hardcover version of Conservapedia. The Goonie 1 What's this button do? Uh oh.... 20:37, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Dear fuck that first page that you can preview is not even wrong... Scarlet A.pngpostate 23:19, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
That's scary shit. I can't believe no one called him out on his bullshit in the reviews section. Tetronian you're clueless 15:40, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

Brown like that[edit]

Thought you'd like this little rap. "I do that thingy with my mouth and then I frown like that". CrundyTalk nerdy to me 14:46, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

Tea partiers[edit]

Who here has gone to a "Tea Party" or done any "Tea-Bagging" lately? I know I went to a local Tea Party here in the Twin Cities to protest big government taking all my hard earned money (from playing the stock market), and there were literally tens of people there, all ready to go teabagging all over the Minneapolis area! I must say, it was a gay old time, indeed! Conservative Punk (talk) 04:45, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Did you go to the liberal media tea-bag protests to protest that the media ignores the tea-baggers? I heard one got over 100 protesters. How much longer is the mainstream media going to ignore this growing movement? - π 06:43, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Positive Woo?[edit]

Ok, normally I'd put this on the to do list, but I wanted to get some actual feedback on this. I'm considering a page on "positive woo" (btw, I got distracted by finals and Christmas, I promise to get the David Farrant page done soon). This was kind of inspired by the current page on the Weigh Down Diet, which I think is really overly harsh. First off, based on what the page says, the diet never claims that prayer literally burns calories, but simply that Jesus can motivate you to lose weight, and there's no question that religion can be motivating. Secondly, it annoys me because the page first acknowledges that "Shamblin states that someone should "listen to their bodies" and only eat when hungry, equating excessive eating with the sin of greed." but then goes on to say "While the diet doesn't advocate anything bad, it may lead people to possibly starve themselves unnecessarily. The human body produces hunger and thirst pains for a very good reason and ignoring these can be outright dangerous." ignoring the fact that the article already stated that the diet encourages people to eat when (and only when) they're hungry.

What I'm thinking of with a "positive woo" article is that, when dealing with psychological issues (ie lack of motivation, depression, anger, etc), things that are basically woo can still produce the desired effect, and even if they're not true they thus cease to be scams (hell, this is essentially what Shamans have done throughout human history all over the world, the perform a cultural ritual and fix some variation of depression). Granted, the ethics of using the placebo effect in this way is still questionable, but if the woo provider believed it, and it produced the desired effect, I think it would be hard to say it was truly wrong. Does anyone agree that: a) this would be a suitable argument, and b) the Weigh Down Diet article should be revised?--Mustex (talk) 01:43, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Weigh down looks fine to me. I think you are looking for the placebo effect? ħumanUser talk:Human 04:46, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
To an extent, yes, but I'm talking more about a specific use of the placebo effect, and the ethical implications thereof, than about the placebo effect itself. And, if you think the Weigh Down Diet page looks ok, would you please explain to me why this diet is any more likely than any other diet to cause people to starve themselves?--Mustex (talk) 05:01, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
I thought I was being quite nice with that article, actually. The reason that it says "starve themselves" is based on the criticism by a qualified dietician in the article I was reading on it that brought it to my attention. Diets such as this do advocate eating less, but people can take this too far, in the case of Weigh Down, people are lead to ignore hunger pains which can be dangerous (one of the best parodies of diets I've seen is on The Devil Wear's Prada where one of the girsl mentions she's on a diet where she eats nothing until she's just about to pass out, and then she eats a cube of cheese!). But what you're seeing and noticing is actually very much the textbook case of woo. It's not that it doesn't work, but that the explanation around it is superflous and (by a logical, methodological naturalist and rational view) unnecessary. The Weigh Down Diet simply advocates not eating so much (just as Brain Gym very rightly advocates physical exercise if you cut out the bullshit) which is of course going to work. But the thing is, good advice, particularly good dietry advice, is free, can't be patented and can't be sold. So you take some good advice and mix it with something that sounds awesome, new, special. As Human points out, this can be "positive" because of the placebo effect, but this doesn't stop the mechanism being total and utter bullshit. Homeopathy "works", but only as a placebo, the whole thing about it being better than a placebo, and explanations such as the Prinicpal of Similars and Water Memory are wrong and can only be wrong. That's what woo is all about, it's about misleading people into thinking that they're doing something that they're not, and more often than not, making some cash out of the gullible fools while you're at it. The ethics of the placebo effect are related to this, namely that using a placebo as an intentional treatment (outside a trial) is unethical because of the deciet and breach of trust between patient and doctor (the thought that the placebo won't cure them and you're denying them treatment is actually less of an issue, as you would only want to administer placebos to none-threatening conditions, hypocondria, anxiety and so on, not cancer or anything like that). So too, with woo, you're decieving people by providing - well, selling - a bullshit explanation to go with something simple that would otherwise be free; "be positive", "don't eat so much", "be active" and so on. Mostly, this sort of deciet is considered morally wrong, so by extention placebos and woo explanations are also morally wrong - even if they do "work". Scarlet A.pngpostate 22:50, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
If people are encouraged to ignore hunger pains, why does the article say they're told to eat when they're hungry? If the diet tells them to eat when hungry, and they don't, that's on them. Also, yes the mechanism is woo, but any mechanism for motivating people will, at some level going to be woo. Willpower pills don't exist. But, if it works, is it really bullshit? Particularly if the people selling it actually believe it, and aren't just conning people out of their money? I mean, what separates this diet from any other book about positive thinking and religious devotional? At any point in this diet do the people claim it to be scientific, or anything other than a way to motivate yourself? As for the issue of selling it, I'm pretty sure that outside encouragement can be a big motivator, which I'm sure some people would be willing to pay for in book form. It feels good to have someone tell you you can do it, or that God can help you do it. And if the person is not a doctor, and sincerely believes in the religious system he/she is teaching, then I fail to see what possible problem there could be?--75.107.28.120 (talk) 05:44, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Mustex (I suppose). You say: but any mechanism for motivating people will, at some level going to be woo. I disagree. If somebody tells a smoker "If you don't stop smoking then there is a good chance you will die." That may motivate them and there would be no woo involved.
On the other hand, it is certainly true that getting people to pay money for something makes them more likely to value it and increases the placebo effect. But so what? Imagine that I sell you expensive colored water and tell you that it will make you feel better because the great god RA has blessed it - and this works becasue it gives you a good shot of the placebo effect. I make a nice profit and you are happy. I may even be sincere. (I suspect that most homeopaths are sincere.)
By your argument there is no problem because I'm sincere and the product "worked". But at another level we are both completely deceived - and this would seem to be a problem, especially if we go on from there to make other decisions about the power of RA based on this belief.--BobBring back the hat! 15:29, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
We can condense the point further: do the ends justify the means? What if the ends of a religious based diet ends up with them becoming a fundamentalist or part of a cult when all they really needed was some encouragement from friends and some advice from a dietician (which, like Bob's smoking analogy, is not woo), is that particularly right? Maybe, maybe not as it's mostly irrelevant - the real point is whether the ends justify deceit, obfuscation, bullshitting, tricking, conning, stealing and the promoting of ideas that could be applied in contexts where they are not only inappropriate but downright dangerous (praying for your nerves or taking a homeopathic remedy for "feeling under the weather" might be relatively harmless but this leads to people starting to believe that the same mechanisms can work for cancer or HIV, and that is the biggest problem).
But not all mechanisms for motiviation or anything that works on a psychological level is woo, if you call it the placebo effect, it's not woo, if Derren Brown openly admits at the start he's going to be a dirty trickster and confuse people for entertainment, it's not (strictly) woo - whereas on the other hand, a homeopathic remedy based on water memory is woo, and someone claiming that they can talk to the dead when they're really just cold reading is woo (and outright sick). The point of woo is that it's superfluous window dressing to what really works. Because a woo explanation is patently false and when you apply it, you're encouraging people to think that it's true - and this leads to, as I said above, the biggest danager; that people will apply it where it is inappropriate. Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:51, 28 December 2009 (UTC)
Yes, but there are still other issues to be considered. First off, I think homeopathy is wrong, even when the practitioner believes in it, because it clearly doesn't work, and can thus prevent other treatments, and provides no benefit for the money. If I cure your depression, though, for the cost of a book, clearly you've gotten your money's worth. Furthermore, you seem to think that "you'll die" is as motivating as God, but I don't think that's necessarily the case (ie suicide bombers), particularly when the death by cardiovascular disease is many years in the future, as opposed to "sin" which is something that's happening now. I would certainly object to using it to convert people to another religion, but if its a system that works within the religion they were already a part of, so what? They still believe exactly what they did before, and at no point has the practitioner lied, and the benefits clearly did outweigh the price of the book if they lost weight. When you say that this diet could be used to get people to join cults, that's just Argument from Adverse Consequences, unless the diet is being actively used to recruit people into a cult.--Mustex (talk) 19:04, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Request - Acrobat[edit]

Does anyone here have a full copy of acrobat (as in not reader)? If so then could you convert a table in a PDF document to an excel spreadsheet for me? CrundyTalk nerdy to me 21:20, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

I've got Acrobat Professional 8.0. Think that will work? Macai (talk) 21:21, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
Nutty's emailed me so I should be fine, but thanks for the offer. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 12:53, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
You're welcome. Macai (talk) 18:53, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Wikileaks down[edit]

"To concentrate on raising the funds necessary to keep us alive into 2010, we have very reluctantly suspended all other operations, until Jan 6" I am eating Toast& honeychat 04:46, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Bummer, I hope they make it back. ħumanUser talk:Human 06:27, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
But you can still access Hovind's doctoral thesis. Tetronian you're clueless 16:17, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Someone uploaded it here, too. Somewhere. ħumanUser talk:Human 19:42, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Roman Tax Collection[edit]

Could someone please explain this system to me, because the way they always explained it to me in Sunday School seems highly implausible. Basically they claimed that people made bids for positions as tax collectors in Rome, at which point they were given a license to extort money from people, and anything they could take above their bid was their payment. The problem I have believing this is that apparently they were ranked (since Zacchius was the chief tax collector for the region), in which case what motivation does anyone have to bid for the highest ranking tax collector position, instead of going for the lowest ranking tax collector position, and thus being able to bid lower, and keep more? Someone, please explain.--Mustex (talk) 05:08, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Sounds like a MLM scheme to me - you want to have lots of people in your "downline" to get a little bit of cash from. ħumanUser talk:Human 06:29, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
I think this only happened under Caligula or one of the real nutters like that. The Roman treasury would only give licences to the highest bidders, say there were 10 licences and 50 bidders. So you had to bid high enough to get a licence, but not too high as you would not be able to cover your bid. I think the Romans got the money up front and you spent the year making it back. Public buses are often run under a similar system these days. - π 06:37, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Tax farming. - π 06:38, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Unfortunately this sort of thing still goes on. Some African countries pay their customs officials either very little or people pay to obtain those jobs as the illicit rewards can be substantial in comparison with pay levels of the general populace. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 09:21, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Ok, but what powers does the Chief Tax Collector have that the other tax collectors under him don't, that allows him to make any more money than them? That's the part that always confused me.--Mustex (talk) 18:54, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Do you know how MLM works? Say I get 10% (bribe/kickback) of what 100 people make, and their earnings are 10% kickbacks on 100 more people each, who are all earning 10% kickbacks on what they do, I get the most money.
Yeah, that's the deal. Imagine the pyramid; even though the guys at the bottom kick up only a little, there are a lot of guys at the bottom. The guy at the top gets all their little amounts, which adds up to a lot. Plus, being at that position means you can earn even more by accepting industry bribes. They would favor their friends or whatever industry paid them not to be taxed by the little guys.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 20:04, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
That's only the early empire though. The late empire makes for an interesting comparison. Whole regions are assessed, and are required to contribute a fixed sum. The richest and most known person in the region is appointed tax administrator by force. He has to extort the taxes from his fellow citizens. If he doesn't get the whole assessment for the region he has to pay the difference himself. As you can imagine this sort of Scylla and Charybdis was something people tried very hard to avoid, even to the point of giving wealth away to family to avoid being the happy one chosen.
The republic is also interesting. The basic and highly simplified system here is that after your term as praetor, quaestor, consul, etc. (i.e. in Rome) you spend huge sums trying to get elected as propraetor, proquaestor, proconsul (i.e. in the Provinces). Guess where those elected officials recuperated this investment (hint: see the etymology of province — pro-vincere, "after the conquest"). Pietrow (talk) 21:11, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

15 Most Heinous Climate Villains[edit]

I found this article I think you guy's might like.Ryantherebel (talk) 19:09, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Uh. Cool. Thanks for telling us about it. But you forgot the link. Here it is. --Tom Moorefiat justitia 19:20, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Oh shit! I'm terribly sorry.Ryantherebel (talk) 20:12, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
I think all fifteen should be Inhofe, personally. He even tried to make every member of his committee read State of Fear.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 20:15, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

New Years hurrah[edit]

Its 9:03am Dec 31st 2009 and I am about to get my New Year started. Hope all enjoy themselves! [[User:Ace McWicked|Ace]][[User_Talk:Ace McWicked|<sup>i9</sup>]] (talk) 20:22, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Wow... my partying doesn't start for 36 hours or so. Good on ya.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 20:12, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Well, have a happy New Year, Ace. Mine isn't for another 32 hours, as well. Lord Goonie Hooray! I'm helping! 20:27, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Mine isn't for about 22 hours. I'm still not sure what I'm doing. My ex has invited me to her party, but I really don't want to see her, because I'll have a shit time and the decade will be off to a poor start. What was my point again? Oh yeah, happy new year everyone. SJ Debaser 23:07, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Happy New Year all. I'm writing an essay about my reflections on the decade, I'll be sure to post it when I'm done. Tetronian you're clueless 23:18, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
'Tis done. See here. Tetronian you're clueless 03:43, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Love your new sig, Ace.  Lily Inspirate me. 09:19, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

Happy New Year[edit]

Although I'm pretty sure that Gentlemen Pi and Ace have already been rendering drunken versions of Auld Lan Syne (sp?) by now, I'm about to hop onto an aeroplane, so let me wish you 'orrible lot an early and very happy, healthy and safe 2010. --PsygremlinSprich! 09:01, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

Auld Lang Syne, Psy. The 'lang' being Scottish for 'long' rather than referring to a Welsh saint. (PS. I know it should be ll.)  Lily Inspirate me. 09:31, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
The cognoscenti know not to cross the arms until the last verse - however most of us don't know more than the chorus and mumble the rest! Bob Soles (talk) 11:21, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Happy new year from Australialand, it's been 2010 for about 15 minutes now and so far it's turning out to be an alright year - I've aready been drunk for 100% of this year! -RedbackG'day 13:16, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Ugh, now I've been hungover for about 25% of this year. Where's the Vegemite? Nothing cures a hangover better than eating cooked beer waste. -RedbackG'day 21:14, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Happy new year from Irelandland.--ConcernedresidentAsk me about your mother 13:18, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
You lucky bastards! It's not 2010 here for 14 more hours. Tetronian you're clueless 15:24, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
It's not even drinking time yet. But it is almost pizza time. --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 17:17, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
I just had mine. I'll probably order more later. Pizza does seem to be the typical New Years Eve food. SJ Debaser 17:21, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Roasted potatoes and leftover roast beef for me. And a nice 6-month-old merlot tonight (I can't stand champagne). --Kels (talk) 21:22, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

Ugh, I fucking hate the new years. License to be a jackass. — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 17:55, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

2009 couldn't end any quicker. This has not been an overall good year, in fact it may rank very low if I were to take the time to rank my years on Earth. Pros: sister got married, bought a car. Cons: Dad lost his job after 41 years, I got dumped by the girl I was sure I was going to marry (on the day of a Social Distortion concert of all days), lost my grandmother, had surgery for the first time, band broke up, joined another band that broke up. Bring on 2010!!! Happy New Year to all y'all. Aboriginal Noise Oh, what a lovely tea party! 18:32, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
I love New Year's Eve! Going to get my champagne on, going to dance and hot-tub at a party... fun times. You need to go to better parties if all you meet are jackasses.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 22:40, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
WAHOO! It's finally next year! Happy New Years to all! Tetronian you're clueless 05:51, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
Somewhere in the first hour of my new year I was watching Leonard Cohen Live in London on my local NH public TV. I hope the year only gets better, that was one hell of a way to start it. ħumanUser talk:Human 08:35, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Avatar Rehash[edit]

So I finally got out and took in Avatar..... I will withhold my review, but I will say that my expectations were fulfilled in another area: The Fundies Hated. For the enjoyment of the mob, here is the Christiananswers.net Review of James Cameron's Avatar Also for your enjoyment, check out their review of Walt Disney's Princess and the Frog. SirChuckBCall the FBI 13:34, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

I must say tat I quite liked it in 3D--BobBring back the hat! 18:54, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
I was at a local "lots of shopping" place last night hitting Staples up for some reinforced tape, and there was no room at the inn. The parking lot was filled almost to capacity in front of pretty much every store. All I could figure is that the multiplex behind the shopping zone had Avatar on nine screens or something. Are there any other blockbusters out right now? ħumanUser talk:Human 21:30, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
What else did yo expect from a site that rated goddamn Blade Runner and There Will Be Blood "extremely offensive"?--User:Theautocrat/Sig 02:40, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
Their review of "Dogma" wasn't as scathing as I'd thought/hoped it would be. Still "extremely offensive" though. Aboriginal Noise Oh, what a lovely tea party! 03:15, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
If you want a treat, just read their review of "Golden Compass". Absolutely hilarious. --User:Theautocrat/Sig 03:41, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
The one that will always have a special place in my heart is Happy Feet. Yes, the movie about the dancing Penguin.... Apparently it was sent directly from Satan to corrupt our children, and no, I'm not making this up.... I also love the comments sections, it's a real poe test. SirChuckBCall the FBI 05:23, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
It was a very political movie, but I'm surprised people went that far. Tetronian you're clueless 06:05, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

What Darwin Never Knew: A Creationist's Nightmare[edit]

Did anybody happen to see the PBS NOVA special What Darwin Never Knew? It was really interesting, as it discussed how modern genetics is being used prove that life evolved from the same sets of genes, except in a more informational, better researched format than this sentence. I highly recommend, if you didn't see it, that you watch it. It can be watched here. Again, I highly recommend it! The Goonie Punk Can't sleep, clowns will eat me! 23:03, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Was it specifically anti-creationist, or just "here's some interesting science" in it's presentation?--Mustex (talk) 03:12, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
It was only anti-creationist if you believe proving evolution to be anti-creationist. Otherwise, there was no mention of creationism except that, when Darwin proposed the Theory of Evolution, it went against the beliefs of the time. Otherwise, it is mostly about how genetics has, essentially, proven Darwin's theory and how it filled in the gaps that Darwin himself couldn't answer. Trust me, it's a very interesting documentary, even for those who already had a grasp for the proof behind evolution. My titling of this post as "The Creationist's Nightmare" is just a swipe at creationists who make internet videos talking about this or that being "the evolutionists' nightmare". The Spikey Punk I'm punking my punk! 03:25, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Ah, ok, my initial reaction was "Does anyone other than a creationist not know that genetics confirm evolution?" so I wasn't sure.--Mustex (talk) 15:08, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
A lot of Dawkin's last series on Darwin was like that. He did a lot of genetics and going around genetics labs to look at the equipment (not in massive detail, I should add) but he certainly put the "anti-creationist" slant on it, which is to be expected considering. But when biologists get all doe-eyed and say that genetics is one of the most beautiful confirmations of an old theory ever, they're not wrong. Scarlet A.pngpostate 08:19, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

I now hate Disney[edit]

Ok, a little while ago I was channel surfing and noticed that "Princess Protection Program" was on. I was like "Oh, yeah, lame jokes about a Princess in hiding trying to blend in and acting very stereotypical. Probably be good for a few groaners, and a post-movie rant about how illogical it was." For that most part, it lived up to those expectations (She didn't know what a hamburger was? Doesn't she have tv? Hell, they serve hamburgers in some fancy restaurants, at most polite society would have taught her to cut it in half. And what evil dictator would actually be stupid enough to PERSONALLY fly to the United States, which is offering sanctuary to his enemies and thus is clearly not on his side, and take armed troops into a High School prom. No government in the world would stand for that, us least of all!), but that's beside the point. The point is this: Why did they make one of her defining "weird" traits her ability to speak six languages? Granted, it probably would have made more sense to say her parents were in the army so she'd been all over the world, rather than just telling people she was "from Iowa," but is Disney actually suggesting that if kids try to learn new languages they'll be outcasts!?! The most disturbing part of this is that the girl watching out for her got mad when she spoke Spanish to a hispanic lunch lady. Yes, because we certainly can't stand to learn the second most common language in our own country, and those of us who speak it fluently should never, EVER speak it as a courtesy to someone whose first language is Spanish! Fuck you Disney!--Mustex (talk) 03:12, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

Hehehe, I think this is the first tirade you've gone on here, Mustex. But I agree. Only in the United States are we so ethno-centeric that we are afraid to learn more than English. I, myself, speak 3 languages, and find it disturbing that most Americans barely know their first language. The Goonie Punk Can't sleep, clowns will eat me! 03:20, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
I used to think I was fluent in obscenity, learned from some of the best. That got too easy, so now I'm working on my sly vulgarity chops. When I had a lot of non-anglophone co-workers, I figured the most courteous thing I could do here in the USA was to speak plain English to them. If I got a look that said ¿qué? I would shift to my broken Spanish, or sometimes Portuguese. Pretty soon they got used to it, and played along the way each one was most comfortable. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 03:36, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
(1) It did not used to be common practice for people to know more than one language, and when one did learn other languages, it was a practical matter, enabling one to communicate while visiting the countries where the languages were spoken.
(2) If immigrants are to be integrated here, they should have a good knowledge of the language of the land, and the only way they can get that is to be made to use it. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 03:41, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
True. I suppose, having been zu die Schweiz a couple of times, I just kinda think that Spanish should be made a second official language here, especially since the Latino population will, eventually, outnumber the caucasian population here in the United States. The Goonie 1 What's this button do? Uh oh.... 03:46, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
There is no "official" language of the united States. In theory, the government could conduct their business in Basque and noone could stop them. That's why you will occasionally see petitions to make English the official language, so that the kid's of illegal immigrants (who are citizens) couldn't go to schools that only taught in English. --User:Theautocrat/Sig 03:51, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
(EC) Most of those Latinos, however, will have been born here and will speak English natively. There is a German-American plurality in the country at the moment, but making German an official language is not discussed. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 03:54, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Map of US majority ethnicity by state
Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 03:58, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
See here. Tetronian you're clueless 04:01, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
When the second paragraph of the "plot" subsection on Wikipedia starts with "inexplicably", you know you're onto a winner. Scarlet A.pngpostate 08:22, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Hovind's Thesis Redux[edit]

Patriot University has commented on Hovind's "thesis". I can't decide what the best part is; that the university does not have a copy of his thesis, that they think Wikilinks is part of Wikipedia, or the musical montage. - π 04:38, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

You mean wikileaks, not wikilinks, and yes, that is so fucking funny we should put it on our main page. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:47, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
I thought it was odd when I was typing it. - π 04:53, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
I'd have to agree with Huw here. That's is comedic genius on a completely different level. Punky Your mental puke relief 04:49, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
(ECx2) You mean that article or the paper itself? If the paper, the problem is it wasn't the real thing, just the "rough draft". Which sucks, really, since I spent so much time reading it and bashing my head against the wall. Tetronian you're clueless 04:52, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
(ECx9)"We at Patriot are astounded over this world-wide search for Hovind’s dissertation; website traffic from 93 countries!" "Hovind’s dissertation was part of a graduate “project”. Thus, the paper being posted online was only a portion of Hovind’s initial research notes for his dissertation requirements. It is obviously not a finished product." Obviously. What's so funny is that he doesn't have a "finished product" to present to counter the utter mockery and contempt he is getting for "His work since 1991 has been widely distributed and stands on it’s own and supercedes an earlier written dissertation." Nice find, Pi guy. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:53, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
"Eternity is longer than the 17 billion years evolution claims for the present age of the earth." Highly amusing, that level of incompetence. And, yes, audio with no "stop" button is a lower level of incompetence, but clueless nonetheless. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:53, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
No, audio with no stop button is a disgusting crime which will earn you a place in the eighth ring of hell. Professor Moriarty 10:58, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Apparently Ronald Regan was one of the founding fathers. - π 05:05, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

I found the typos amusing. The title has one, and throughout the article they show that they've no idea how to use apostrophes. Their attempt to characterise criticism of Hovind and Patriot as some kind of hatred is amusing. By their logic our article on Expelled is an example of anti-semitism. Yup, nice find Pi. --ConcernedresidentAsk me about your mother 10:05, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

God damn (rant below)![edit]

Okay, so as I have no family inside of 1000 miles from me, I have a long standing tradition of buying myself my own presents for Christmas. Among them, I got AC2. I thought it was a pretty cool game, nice graphics, good story (insert obligatory assassin's Creed praise here). Then, after I beat it inside a week, I though, "okay, that's cool", put it on a shelf, and will maybe play it one or two more times before I forget about it, and move on. After I beat an amazingly gorgeous game, I then proceeded to whip out my cell phone and begin gaming away on another game, nameley Sonic the Hedgehog 2, a game from what, 1990? Then, it hit me. New games just aren't fun anymore. I derived many times more enjoyment from failing at a crappy port of a platformer older than 20% of the population that I did from totally owning at a hot, cool new game that was 10 times the price. What the hell is wrong with me!??!?! My "best games" list are all either over a decade old, or insane obscure indie games. All of these new games I find either boring, repetitive, or unengaging. I suppose this is just because games nowadays are just too damn easy. The single greatest game I have ever played was Rogue (keep in mind, the graphics looked like what you would get if you held the shift key and mashed your keyboard a few times). I have never beaten it, after nearly two decades concerted effort (Not quite true. I have beaten Rogue Touch once, but that is not a faithful port). It's the same with movies. Avatar was gorgeous, but my favorite movie is still Ingmar Bergman's The Seventh Seal, which is black and white. Is this just a symptom of me getting old, or has everyone experienced this at some time before? --User:Theautocrat/Sig 03:59, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Are you kidding? In my opinion the two best games ever are Starfox and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 64. And most of my favorite movies are pretty old too. And I'm still in public high school. Tetronian you're clueless 04:06, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
I still play Doom, and have played no games that have come out since then...TheoryOfPractice (talk) 04:49, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Asteroids. Only game I ever cared for. Can still play it in my dreams. ħumanUser talk:Human 04:52, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
If you like Asteroids, have you ever tried Echoes? It's a bit on the shiny side, but it's really fun. Personally, I play WoW (yeah, yeah) and a variety of DS games and that's really about it. Liked the original Doom and Doom II a lot, though, and I'm fond of point & click games like Machinarium. --Kels (talk) 05:00, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Heh, "Yeah, it's a bit like Asteroids hyperactive, drug crazed brother displayed in blur-o-vision© and viewed through psychedelic sunglasses in a cheap nightclub." I just liked the game. Four buttons (go, left, right, shoot) and four "enemies" - big rocks, small rocks, big slow spaceship, small fast spaceship. Twas fun, it was. Many decades and quarters ago. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:14, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
Best games: Starfox 64 (1997), Baldur's Gate II (2000), and Max Payne (2001). I've played all kinds of newer games and older games, but I always return to these exemplars of the flight, RPG, and shooter genres. There's nothing wrong with being able to appreciate something done right.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 07:52, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Oh, on the movie side of things, while I like a good spectacle now and again, I must say the movies I really respect are stuff like old Kurosawa, Citizen Kane and that ilk, and European art house stuff. But I've always loved that sort of thing, even when I was in my teens. So I dunno if it's getting old as being able to recognize good shit when you see it. --Kels (talk) 05:22, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

I have fond memories of a bunch of Acorn Electron games from my childhood in the 80s (Chuckie Egg, Gisburn's Castle, Droid, Repton 3). Last year I found some Electron emulator software & some of these games online, & got addicted to them again for a while, but for some reason it made my laptop overheat, drove the fan really hard & knackered the battery, & neither have been the same since.  :-( Regarding films, there are some I really love from the 50s/60s/70s (Kurosawa samurai films, Sergio Leone spaghetti westerns, Werner Herzog art house stuff) but I don't really watch many films much older than that, & a lot of my favourite movies are from the 90s & 00s. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 11:38, 26 December 2009 (UTC)
There is only one game I ever found interesting. But I'm a seriously oldpharrt. Once invited a guy to go sightseeing in a Skyhawk, some RL flying that is, and he said, sounding like Dracula (couldn't help it, he was Rumanian) "OK, I trust you. I've watched you play Tetris." Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 16:44, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

That's only because Sonic 2 is a very good, classic platformer (Although irritatingly difficult in the later levels, reason why I find Sonic 3 & Knuckles the best game in the series.) that has therefore stood the test of time remarkably well.Even in the 90s, there were a lot of crappy games made and I swear the good/bad rate was about the same as today, not to mention that the games with pretty graphics were very shallow in gameplay even back then (Donkey Kong Country). Additionally I don't understand why the fact that Sonic 2 costs considerably less today than when it was just released should have anything to do with its quality. Liking obscure indie games though is just called being pretentious. Vulpius (talk) 21:00, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

Starfox 64 (old), God Hand (obscure) and Persona 4 (obscure at least around here) are my favorite games of all time. I actually would prefer playing them to alot of the new games (if only I still had my N64)--Thanatos (talk) 02:54, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
The N64 is undoubtedly the best game system ever devised. And it has the most unique (and ergonomic) controller of all time. Tetronian you're clueless 22:59, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
I have been playing GTA:4 (San Andreas is still king) and AC2 (just can't get the hang of it). Still, Half Life 2 and Doom 3 are my tops. Aceof Spades 23:44, 27 December 2009 (UTC)
Starfox and Goldeneye on the N64 - Best games ever. I agree that most games these days just have a kind of linear path through them and then you're done. Older games had something about them that made you want to go back again and again. I suspect it's the fact that you could just start from somewhere that you liked before (e.g. like on the Donkey Kong Country games) whereas the games these days are story based and so you'd have to go through all the dull shit and videos to get anywhere interesting. CrundyTalk nerdy to me 16:55, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
What, nobody plays Portal any more? --Kels (talk) 17:35, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
Ah, I forgot about Goldeneye! Probably the best Bond shooter of them all, although "Nightfire" for PS2 isn't bad either. Tetronian you're clueless 15:26, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Goldeneye was great- the multiplayer mode was amazing. My favoritist games were on the NES, though. SMB3, Mike Tyson's Punchout, Final Fantasy, Dragon Warrior, and Crystalis. Corry (talk) 06:15, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
You just had to talk about gaming, didn't you? Then again, I got my start in gaming when I was 4. My dad brought home an old Commodore 64 with some games he found in the junkyard, did a little bit of soldering, and booted it up. After that it was a matter of catching up and steady progression.
I think the main draw as to why people like older games is their simplicity. There's no status screens, no maps, no side missions or annoying support cast to get in between you and the game. Then again, games can be used as a parallel to our overall technological advancement. 25 years ago the Nintendo was the height of home entertainment. We have come from 8-bit sprites and 30 screen frames of a level to high definition rendered models and kilometers of space per map, with multiple maps as standard in a quarter of a century. Game Narrative, sound composition and content also continue to improve at an alarming rate, with games now costing as much as some major motion pictures with years of development time put into them. It reminds me of the fact that a scientific calculator of today has more processing power than the computer that was in the Lunar Lander. On another note, i'm proud of you guys. Godhand? Crystalis? Goldeneye? People actually know about good games here! Then again, I play Klonoa for fun...i'm an Alpha Nerd. -- CodyH (talk) 01:52, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Klonoa!! I adore Klonoa, although I do get a giggle about what the pitch meeting must have been like. "Uh yeah, so it's about this dog kid who's a big Pac-Man fan and he inflates stuff...yeah, inflates..." Although when I played through the first time, I found the optional quest at the tower to be diabolically hard. Spent hours on that thing. --Kels (talk) 02:03, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
I found the story deals with a lot of dark material. Betrayal, revenge, murder, deception, and that's just the first game. Later on they introduce a drunk psycho who puts your character in a coma...yeah, great material for kids.
Another game I recommend is Cave Story. Easy to find, and there's a translation. It is fun, simple, and has one of the hardest 'secret' levels I have ever survived. Not as hard as THIS, however. -- CodyH (talk) 02:32, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
God powers keep my pimphand strong. I love the ending song.--Thanatos (talk) 03:16, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Never did finish Cave Story. I couldn't beat the witch chick, even after a lot of tries. --Kels (talk) 03:37, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Shin Megami Tensei II is pretty advanced for a old SNES game. I really liked the 3D design of the dungeons. Was never released in NA because of the religious overtones (the final boss is God. You can team up with Satan or Lucifer to kill him. I have never been able to beat him. Cheap bastard)--Thanatos (talk) 03:45, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Wikipedia has an SPOV, too![edit]

If this is too serious for the Saloon bar, just tell me where to go so I don't make an ass of myself. I admit I'm new and I'm already getting my feet wet.

So I just got done reading the "Community Standards" article, and I took note of this. I think Wikipedia also has a de facto policy similar to SPOV (in the second sense) on here.

I know how to test this out, too. At the risk of getting blocked on Wikipedia (again, lol), I might make edits on there that fly right in the face of the scientific consensus on... anything. Preferably something that has a lot of political or religious contention (like global warming or evolution respectively), so I can find some fairly mainstream sources that I can cite to make the edits seem somewhat legit.

From there, I'll wait to see how long it takes before the edit gets reverted. I bet it will. No, seriously, I really think it will happen.

So what do you think? Sound fun? Macai (talk) 21:14, 29 December 2009 (UTC)

It will certainly get reverted; it's happened to people like Andy and Ed already. Tetronian you're clueless 21:23, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
Well, I'm glad that someone agrees with me, but... may I ask who Andy and Ed are? Did someone else make this observation already, or something? Macai (talk) 21:24, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
It doesn't sound particularly like fun. And I don't think we'd want to give the impression that we were in favour of people making frivolous - or borderline vandal - edits at WP.--BobBring back the hat! 21:44, 29 December 2009 (UTC)
@Macai: I mean Andrew Schlafly, founder of Conservapedia, and Ed Poor. Tetronian you're clueless 01:03, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
This plan sounds even worse than one of Mustex's and he has some terrible plans. - π 04:31, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Why don't you tell me what's so terrible about it? And please try to refrain from "it's common sense and you're an idiot, so in conclusion your idea is terrible" type comments. Macai (talk) 05:12, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
it's common sense and you're an idiot, so in conclusion your idea is terrible I am eating Toast& honeychat 05:17, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
@Τe†rоиіαn: I figured that out a few minutes after you mentioned "Ed". I'm not really into Conservapedia, but after reading a few articles on here, it seems that it's a major topic. Macai (talk) 05:41, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
It certainly is a major topic here. But my point is that they have tried to insert "unscientific" information into Wikipedia, and they failed miserably. That's why I think your experiment is useless - we already know that the Wikipedian community in general is pro-science, or at least regards scientific knowledge as trustworthy. Tetronian you're clueless 05:54, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Macai: basically it's a stupid idea. There's a zillion nutters already sticking non-scientific crap in all sorts of articles & getting stamped on. Unless you really believe something and have a lot of whacky "facts" at your fingertips, you're gonna get stomped straight away - why would you want that? I am eating Toast& honeychat 06:04, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Well, the point would be to demonstrate that Wikipedia has the same "SPOV", in the second sense, as this site does. I mean, I don't even have to say anything that is untrue, just something that could possibly be interpreted to mean that the scientific consensus is wrong by some people. An example would be that global warming, so far, has peaked in 1998. This doesn't mean that there weren't mitigating factors causing 1998 to be the hottest recorded year so far, nor does it necessarily imply that 1998 will never be topped. However, I bet you anything matter-of-factly stating that 1998 is the warmest recorded year in "global warming"'s lead will be reverted, and fast. Why? Because there are people out there who will read it and think, "Ah hah! I knew global warming was horse shit, and now I have the proof!" Whether this is proof or not is irrelevant; Wikipedians don't want that idea getting into their heads thanks to their articles, and if that means omitting information, then so be it. For this reason, it's reasonable to believe that they are pushing a perspective. That perspective being the scientific consensus. Just like RationalWiki. Macai (talk) 06:53, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
1998 might be the hottest year on record but the overall trend is up, even from there. All you would be proving with that edit is you don't understand statistics. - π 07:00, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Hi Macai. If you feel that there problems with WP's NPOV then the best place to take it up would probably be WP. While there you could presumably make whatever edits you wished on your own behalf to make your case. But I don't see any great groundswell of opinion here to take part in any such project.--BobBring back the hat! 07:04, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Wikipedia has policies against this sort of experimentation: WP:POINT and WP:HOAX. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 07:08, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
The first one in a nutshell: "If you disagree with a proposal, practice, or policy in Wikipedia, disruptively applying it is probably the least effective way of discrediting it – and such behavior may get you blocked." I'm not disruptively applying anything. In fact, all I'm doing is causing them to disruptively enter into a revert war if I choose to press the issue. The second one in a nutshell: "Do not deliberately add hoaxes, incorrect information, or unverifiable content to articles." I'm not adding a hoax, incorrect information, or unverifiable content. Besides, even if I was violating Wikipedia's policies, that wouldn't make my assertions factually inaccurate. Macai (talk) 07:20, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
@Bob M: I happen to have no problem with Wikipedia's NPOV policy. I have no problem with anything, here or there. Where in this thread of discussion did I claim to have a problem with their policies? You must be a psychic or something, because I never asserted that their position was wrong, just that their position is the same as RationalWiki's, and provided a damn good way to test that claim out. Macai (talk) 07:25, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
@Π: What relevance does the overall trend have to do with anything? The edit happens to make no claim that global warming is not happening, or that it's not caused by humans. So in actuality, I'd be proving that they want to omit completely innocuous information because they think it might sway someone's opinion in the "wrong" direction. It just presents the current warmest year on record in case someone might want to know. You know, kind of like how they do the same thing in the "human height" article by saying that Leonid Stadnyk is the tallest living man. Macai (talk) 07:15, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
You would be omitting information too (that the overall trend is still going up) and implying that global has reached its peak (which you admitted was your goal). -- Nx / talk 10:19, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Also it is already mentioned in the article. - π 10:44, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
As I said before - I am sure you are free to do at WP whatever you personally feel is appropriate. It just doesn't look like you're getting any help or support here.--BobBring back the hat! 07:27, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
What I am getting, however, are strawman arguments, non sequiter responses, and baseless dismissals of the idea. I mean, this is RationalWiki. You'd expect the people on here to be... well... rational. I guess there's just no shortage of irony these days, though. Macai (talk) 07:49, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Nobody is interested in what you put in Wikipedia articles, do it or not, nobody cares. - π 09:00, 30 December 2009 (UTC)
Macai, just do it and tell us how it comes out. Tetronian you're clueless 16:20, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

"For this reason, it's reasonable to believe that they are pushing a perspective. That perspective being the scientific consensus." And is that some sort of problem or something? That's what I would expect an encyclopedia to present. Would someone rickroll this delightful character already? ħumanUser talk:Human 19:39, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

I just don't see the point of the experiment. All you will do is waste time and effort. You'll only prove what is already pretty apparent. If you want to experience WP vetting and editing practices first hand all you need to do is observe a collection of pseudo science or conspiracy theory articles for a period of time. The sorts or science vs. woo vs. superstition debates and activities are on-going and long standing. Also, and I don't mean this as offensively as it sounds, aside from common courtesy there is another de facto policy in place over at WP that should prevent you from making erroneous edits, that is "Don't be a dick" which is precisely what you would be doing if you inserted content you knew to be bad into WP for any reason. It's a wonderful reference source for Christ's sake. Show some respect. Me!Sheesh!Mine! 16:00, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

Pick a better movie than Avatar for comparison.WilhelmJunker (talk) 16:56, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Fairwell internet explorer![edit]

I abandon you for Google Chrome! Oh brave new world, that has such people in it (and faster while at it...) ĵ₳¥ášÇ♠ʘ sysop and 'crat! (does it matter?) 04:30, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

I have to ask: were you quoting the Shakespeare line directly, or were you quoting Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World" (or perhaps Edwin Abbot's "Flatland") which references the Shakespeare line? Tetronian you're clueless 04:33, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
(EC)Just be sure to use Ccleaner after you delete Internet Exploder, or else it will stick around in your system, whether you like it or not. Lord Goonie Hooray! I'm helping! 04:35, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Don't delete IE! You will still need it on occasion, and it's a good backup.
Chrome is way better, by the by. It's what I use. I especially like the developer version since I can add the RSS and Gmail extensions.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 04:37, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Is everyone forgetting Firefox, which, unlike both IE and Chrome, has all its source-code available? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:41, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Tetronian, I am quoting from the Tempest, Act 5, Scene 1,

Miranda,

"O, wonder! 
How many goodly creatures are there here! 
How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world 
That has such people in't!"

And I am not going to clean IE completely from my system, it is there, just in case I need it. And as for Firefox, used it, tried it, compared it, and liked Chrome more than all the others. ĵ₳¥ášÇ♠ʘ I like well-to-do hobgoblins 04:42, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. And I have to try Chrome, I use Firefox but I admit I haven't tried many other browsers. Tetronian you're clueless 04:44, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
(EC) I hear good things about it, although I am not at all a fan of its "blurred distinction between 'online' and 'offline'" design philosophy. Perhaps sometime I will compile the open-source version, Chromium, and give it a whirl.
The first Web browser I used was Lynx, in prehistoric days. Then Mosaic, then Netscape, then the Mozilla Suite (from beta on up), and then Firefox. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:52, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
You can't use Windows Update without Internet Explorer. - π 05:20, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Chrome is the shit. However I can;t figure out how to download links, so I use IE for that, and I have Firefox for screengrab. Chrome all the way, baby. --User:Theautocrat/Sig 05:41, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
In Chrome: Right click and choose "save link as."--Tom Moorefiat justitia 05:44, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Chrome is open-source as well. "Chromium" is just the open-source release of all Chrome code. I believe it's done that way for copyright purposes.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 05:43, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Besides Google branding, Chrome contains some proprietary stuff for automatic updates. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 05:55, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Google's nasty habit of installing a software update daemon is what puts me off using any of their stuff on my Mac. It's fair enough for applications to check for updates on launch, but there's little justification in having a background process that's always running. --ConcernedresidentAsk me about your mother 15:35, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
Which is why you'd use chrome/chromium. --91.145.89.78 (talk) 16:21, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
I also recently switched to Chrome. I stayed with IE a long time but the last update did some really annoying things, especially for wiki-editing, & having made the change I'm now glad to be rid of it. Personally I've never much liked how things look in Firefox. Chrome seems pretty neat. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:15, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

You need to keep IE for sites that were written by noobs but have vital data. I cite this, where to get instructions to mount a second-generation Fisher plow on my 1978 Chevy truck I had to use IE, and the info was invaluable, if not essential. ħumanUser talk:Human 08:39, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Π: Vista and 7 don't use IE to access Windows Update. They use a separate program for that.
TomMoore: Pretty sure Chromium is under a BSD license, which doesn't require the source code to be released as with Firefox's licenses, so the release of the source code isn't for copyright purposes. --GastonRabbit (talk) 02:54, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Ethical dilemna - please vote/opine[edit]

So I'm going to be as vague here as needed, but I'll try to give the relevant information. Essentially, I was trolling a racist forum. I sign up as a user, make a couple generic racist posts, nothing too eyebrow raising. Then I thought, what is the likelihood of some of these users using certain racist slang as their password. Lo and behold, I hack into the account of one of the major contributors. Then by finding out information there, I piece together that this guy is a senior VP for a decently sized company (his company got bought out), is a Catholic, and has donated a lot to the NRCC. So what do I do? Do I out this guy in some clandestine way? ConservapediaEditor (talk) 07:44, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

My philosophy is that one should not say anything anonymously on the Internet that one would not care to shout in public from a podium, so there is no ethical reason why you should not blow this fellow's cover, if you have not expressly agreed to keep it. However, by the same tokens, if you are going to out him, you should also be willing to take any legal or other penalty for hacking his account. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 08:02, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
At least do everything from a library computer.--75.107.29.178 (talk) 17:21, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
You're a very naughty boy. I can't condone hacking other people's accounts but now that you have you might as well put it to some good use. But take care, these people can be really nasty - Catholic or not. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 17:27, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
All this is very dodgy, ethically. After all, you yanks are all about free speech, however unpleasant. Unless this guy has done something illegal I'm not sure you can justify outing him. It's difficult to judge without knowing exactly which site you're referring too but my gut reaction says 'no'. Bob Soles (talk) 17:29, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
The only problem I see is that the guy could also be a deep-cover parodist (unless you somehow have very compelling evidence to the contrary). But I guess Catholics aren't allowed to do the parody shit? (Then again, I've assumed identities of real random people with socks before.) Out his ass. Maybe wikileaks? — Sincerely, Neveruse / Talk / Block 17:30, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
"After all, you yanks are all about free speech, however unpleasant. Unless this guy has done something illegal I'm not sure you can justify outing him." Freedom of speech does not mean freedom to speak anonymously. It does, however, mean the freedom to speak the truth (such as the identity of this fellow). Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 17:50, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
I'm not sure whether this is a real situation or a hypothetical one CPEditor has created to sound out RWians' ethical attitudes. Anyway, I think outing this guy as a racist would be reasonable, if it could be done safely. Outing peoples' sexuality or private life is a different matter, but if somebody is in an influential position and is actively racist, it should be brought to light. Also, the guy must know the risk of exposure when he gets involved with that kind of site. The real problem is the danger you'll be putting yourself in when you out the guy - that you could risk being traced, losing your privacy, suffering some kind of retaliation. Be very careful not to do anything that could lead these guys to you. Or to RationalWiki; we really don't need that. WēāŝēīōīďWeaselly.jpgMethinks it is a Weasel 18:47, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
You could send the story to a newspaper, along with his username and password, and either request anonymity or make an e-mail account specially for the purpose. EddyP (talk) 18:58, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
And are you sure that the two are one and the same? As in, more evidence than their haveing the same name. EddyP (talk) 19:00, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

EC Tough one. You got the information if not illegally, then certainly unethically, and I'm not sure how I feel about "outing" someone, given that. To me, that aside, it might boil down to what dude says online--is he just making vague "I hate the (minority of your choice)" comments, or is he crossing the line into unadulterated hate crime--"They all should die, and here's how we should do it" stuff? death threats are not covered by free speech, AFAIK....TheoryOfPractice (talk) 19:04, 31 December 2009 (UTC)

I agree with neveruse (the guy might be a "plant" just like you are) and EddyP - the appropriate step, if any are to be taken, is to actually prove it is he. A good reporter will essentially ignore the username/pword and posts (as inappropriately obtained information), but might look at the guy's real life activities and see if there is a legitimate story that can be backed up with appropriately obtained information. ħumanUser talk:Human 21:15, 31 December 2009 (UTC)
http://xkcd.com/666/ Paranoia is working with you. If you want to do something on the internet and have no risk of getting caught you must do it. --208.75.212.156 (talk) 16:14, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
I would check his position in the company first. Is he in charge of hiring or firing people? What ethnicity are his employees? Are their token members in his staff? Those kind of questions. Maybe get in contact with a few employees first. He might leave his racism at the door for all you know. If he doesn't, you have my blessing--Thanatos (talk) 17:42, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
Oh man, that's a tough call. This is why I made my password the one Data used when he hijacked the Enterprise. Not that I'm a nerd or anything. Corry (talk) 06:30, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Human is right. You got some info by very dubious means, so you have to ignore it and try and substantiate the claim legitimately. It's kind of like when the police might catch out a drug dealer with entrapment; they can't use it as evidence because it's illegitimate and unethical, and hacking someone's password is equally unethical. Going ahead and "outing" someone is your own decision and you have to deal with it in the end, however. Scarlet A.pngpostate 08:14, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

I believe what you did is unlawful and that you should stop now. Nutty Roux100x100 anarchy symbol.svg 16:40, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

I must admit that had crossed my mind as well. I am presuming that the computer system in question is based in a country where unauthorised access is illegal.  Lily Inspirate me. 16:57, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Is it really unauthorized access if you login (!, you knew the username+password, its as much your account as it's anyone else's) to an account that doesn't consist of much more than a username and a signature? I wonder if any ISP keeps extensive enough logs that they could disprove you if you claimed you ran a proxy and burned your hard-drive to random noise after you suspected it was hacked? --91.145.73.149 (talk) 18:49, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
That is putting far too much thought into it... Anyway, it's also an ethical issue as much as a legal issue. Scarlet A.pngpostate 19:35, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
I would imagine that obtaining the information in that way would be illegal. Using it would also be illegal if only for copyright reasons. I presume this is why you are considering using it in a "clandestine" way - so as to avoid any legal come-back to you. So the legal case is clear. As for the ethical one - could you clarify your motivation? Is it to damage the person? To make the world a better place? To have fun at his (?)expense? To just see what happens? To support your political position? To get his job?--BobBring back the hat! 21:42, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
in my location your hacking the account is a criminal matter. Ethically you should have known it was improper conduct. Since neither action seems to bother you , why should you have a problem using that information. Bundle it up and sell it to a muckraking newspaper. Hamster (talk) 22:07, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Who is More Admired?[edit]

Glenn Beck or the Pope?

The answer may surprise you. MDB (talk) 14:52, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Is this to say that the population of crazy people and the population of catholics doesn't have as big an intersection as you might at first think? --JeevesMkII The gentleman's gentleman at the other site 15:17, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Holy fuck, that's scary stuff. Although I suppose that since the US has far fewer Catholics then Protestants, comparing Beck's popularity to the Pope's in the US is very different than it would be in other countries. Tetronian you're clueless 16:40, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
"...was also more admired by Americans than Billy Graham and Bill Gates, not to mention Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush. In Americans' esteem, Beck only narrowly trailed South Africa's Nelson Mandela, the man who defeated apartheid." Never mind the Pope. TheoryOfPractice (talk) 16:44, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Not really "far fewer". "Evangelical percentage of the population at 26.3%; while Roman Catholics are 22% and Mainline Protestants make up 16%." Wp. Andy's nominally a RC (?) but who would he vote for? I am eating Toast& honeychat 16:54, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
I am waiting for Andy to be excommunicated.--Thanatos (talk) 17:29, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Heh! very difficult. I forget which Catholic atheist comedian (?) said: "A catholic who joined the Taliban would only be a a bad catholic" I am eating Toast& honeychat 17:37, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Would be funny though, and Andy would lose alot of support from the good Christians on his site. Goes from religious(snort) man to insane cult leader instantly--Thanatos (talk) 18:34, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Unfortunately the article is subscription only for me and I have never heard of Glenn Beck so my options for commenting are limited.--BobBring back the hat! 19:24, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Battle Royale[edit]

I finished reading it today and I have added it to my top 3 novels besides Salem's Lot and Black Like Me. The one thing I have to say about it is that despite the heavy violence, I could see conservatives pushing this book (esp now that Obama is pres).--Thanatos (talk) 06:40, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Havent read it but didn't really get into Salems Lot - much prefered The Shining. Acei9 07:08, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
The Shining is my second favorite King novel. I like Salem's Lot because I like any non-sparkly vampire media. Battle Royale is like a hugely violent mix of 1984 and Lord of the Flies.--Thanatos (talk) 16:42, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
I never read the book, but the film is a Japanese modern classic and I have it on DVD.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 22:07, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Ben Stein Commits the Greatest Sin Imaginable for a Republican...[edit]

... and call for higher taxes on the wealthy, like him and Warren Buffett.

How long till the apostasy trial is held? MDB (talk) 14:04, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Burn the witch!! Burn the witch!! Tetronian you're clueless 14:22, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
That article appears to be about four years old. Perhaps the pitchfork wielding villagers got lost on the way to Castle FrankenStein...--sloqɯʎs puɐ suƃısuɐɪɹɐssoʎ 16:51, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
I will say it's pretty amazing the way he manages to adopt the essential liberal idea of taxation (equal burden on everyone) while acting like he discovered it. Next up: Ben Stein discovers gravity pulls things down.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 18:51, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
To think the guy who wrote that article went on to "host" Expelled, and lose that cozy NYT gig for doing TV ads... ħumanUser talk:Human 22:30, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Rich-bashing and rationality do not exactly go hand-in-hand. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 22:44, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Apparently someone forgot to read the article. ħumanUser talk:Human 23:09, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
It wasn't me. I was reading the paper. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 23:15, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Dan Brown rehash[edit]

I just read his new one and all I can say is holy fuck, he went out of control with the pseudoscience this time. Tetronian you're clueless 16:44, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

That's what I keep saying.--BobBring back the hat! 19:19, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Trust you didn't put money in the guy's pocket by buying the "book"? I am eating Toast& honeychat 20:11, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
He should do a Twilight book. Totnesmartin (talk) 20:33, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
@Toast: I did buy the book. It wasn't a total loss because I was entertained by the suspenseful parts, but I didn't like the fact that he was peddling woo the entire time. Tetronian you're clueless 21:30, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
He got nothing from me.--BobBring back the hat! 21:33, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Is peddling woo in the name of fiction a bad thing? Is Night of the Living Dead a bad film because there's no such thing as zombies? Dan Brown's work should stand or fall as fiction - he's no David Icke. He sees an intriguing idea and thinks "that'd make a good novel" - it's just a shame that said novel turns out not to be good. Totnesmartin (talk) 22:33, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
As a novel it was good. But usually when the author gets too preachy the book sucks; that's exactly what happened. I liked the suspense and plot twists, but the POV-pushing was annoying. Tetronian you're clueless 05:04, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Through the novel, but especially right at the end when the story was over and the plot finished we are treated to a lotof "true" woo. I won't say who was in the conversation receiving the "straight dope" so as not so spoil a plot-line but it was simply a woo-fest.--BobBring back the hat! 07:48, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Agreed. And "Noetic Science"?? Surely he knows that it is utter bullshit. Tetronian you're clueless 14:47, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
I find Dan Brown to be formulaic, but I definitely didn't read 'Deception point' or 'DaVinci Code' for it's scientific merit. Any fiction book, regardless of how well-versed the author is on his field of choice, should have the facts it presents scrutinized before use. Heinlein was an accomplished engineer, but I wouldn't use his books for engineering references. -- CodyH (talk) 16:00, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Ah, but at least Heinlein was using something resembling real science, and non unadulterated woo. (Too be fair, Brown might assert his science is just as real as Heinlein's, though. I've heard conflicting reports about just how much of his "science" Brown actually believes. MDB (talk) 20:41, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Yes, but Heinlein could construct a novel with a plot other than "holy shit, let's run around an ancient city and uncover secrets!1!!11!1 And there's a secret orginization that dosen't want us to!!2!1~!!1 ONOZ!1!1!1". --User:Theautocrat/Sig 22:13, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Opportunity knocking[edit]

I see there's an article here on Voltaire. How about Rabelais, or Laurence Sterne (had him a book burned, he did) or the Scriblerians, those scalawags? You know you want to write some... Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 18:09, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

Put 'em on the To Do List; that's where I usually get my article suggestions when I feel like being useful.--Tom Moorefiat justitia 22:06, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
That's where I put the ones I feel like other people doing :) Totnesmartin (talk) 09:39, 4 January 2010 (UTC)

Greatest Liberal Films of all time[edit]

Moved to Forum:Greatest_Liberal_Films--Tom Moorefiat justitia 22:24, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

A fun story[edit]

A couple weeks plus a year old, but still nice. [1] ħumanUser talk:Human 23:34, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

PSU[edit]

We've been tidying up (new year's resolution bleurgh!) - among other things: 23 power supplies/chargers which have outlived the things they were supplying/charging. The connectors are all different sizes as are the voltages/amperages. What to do with 'em? I am eating Toast& honeychat 22:00, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Donate them to the Goodwill (or whatever the equivalent is across the pond).--Tom Moorefiat justitia 22:10, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
No one else will need them, either. Get them to someone who can recycle them for the copper & metal plates. ħumanUser talk:Human 22:45, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
I've just closed up my overseas "office" and I'm trying to cram everything into a tiny box room so have the same problem with redundant computer equipment (including PSUs). Our local council recycling unit has facilities where they will accept this stuff and extract the useful bits. However, it really is an indictment of the electrical industry that there are very few standards for DC power supplies regarding connectors, polarity or current. Even my brand-new mobile phone doesn't have the micro-USB connector which is supposed to be the coming standard. Redchuck.gif ГенгисYou have the right to be offended; and I have the right to offend you. 11:03, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Another item that would nice to see industry-wide standards for are the rechargeable batteries on things like cordless drills. ħumanUser talk:Human 22:39, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
Standardizing wall-wart power supplies and rechargeable batteries are both wonderful ideas from the consumers' point of view, but diversity brings the freedom to innovate. If I carry the standardization bit to a certain logical conclusion, we might all still have no choice but to use hard wired telephone wall access points (can't really call them connectors) as big as the housing of some of the smaller phone chargers. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 00:01, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
Well, I only call for it because both appear to be fairly "mature" technologies. It might even add some competition to the "spare battery" market. I have a phone from Sweden (the one in my red telephone picture) that has a plug you could run 30 amps through. Seriously. ħumanUser talk:Human 00:43, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
@ Sprocket: I fail to see how innovation is stifled by adoption of an industry standard. Rechargeable batteries are already standarised, open up a laptop battery and you find it comprised of standard cells. PCs largely run at 12V/5V/3.3V, consumer batteries (alkaline or rechargeable) are 1.5V or 9V. Most of these technologies are based on technology standards in the first place (land-line phone connectors were largely about monopolies preserving their control over national markets). The likes of Targus manage to produce power supplies which power a whole assortment of appliances just by changing the connector.  Lily Inspirate me. 11:01, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

<--Agreed, my text-bite was hasty and badly aimed. It is well-known to be a Clever ThingTM to design electronic hardware using as many off-the-shelf parts as may be. Been there, done that, both analog and datacomm.fat yellow-wire Ethernet, anyone? I'm still a bit astonished at the punch a little switch-mode PSU can deliver, compared to the chunky iron/copper/rectifier/capacitor jobbies of the not so distant past. Mass applications of AC/DC converters would do well to be standardized, but some gadgets need something different than several hundred mA at 5V. Scooting a printer carriage back and forth takes more juice than charging an mp3 player or cell phone, and so on, so there has to be a variety of sizes to suit various applications. The ability to design consumer goods to run on low-energy juice, leaving the zapful stuff at the wall, with the accompanying regulatory hoops consolidated there, as well as the adaptation to different national mains standards, comes in really handy, but that strays from our current topic...

Sadly, industry has a bit too much resistance to re-using bits that were Not Invented Here, so on it goes. Bigger cordless power tools, with ever-increasing battery joltage, are meant to appeal to a certain mindset, and the market has shown that approach works. Wouldn't want to be seen hanging fixtures on the wall with a girly-looking drill, now, would you? I know guys who think like that. Bigger, fresher, more ostentatious works in some markets, while slim and sleek does the job in others. There I go with that dang diversity thing again, but with diversity comes robustness, and in a number of ways. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 15:06, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

P.S. @Human: be thankful for IEC-320 connectors and universal-alimentation power supplies. Now quit your kvetching and get back to work, you godless heathen. Sprocket J Cogswell (talk) 15:21, Sunday, 3 January 2010 (UTC)

By the way, part of what got me whining thinking about this is last summer I was looking into buying a cordless caulking gun. Only one brand was available at the big box HI store. The tool was about fifty bucks, and came without a battery. Battery + charger was another fifty-sixty bucks, and of course that tool would be the only one the battery would work in (unless I bought more of that brand's tools...). I routinely keep a 14v cordless drill charged up. I am on my second cordless hedge trimmer (first went blunt, blade cost = tool cost...), and none of these toys can share batteries which is just sad. If they could all share batteries, I'd need at most 3 on hand, and one would always be freshly charged. I could also add to my tool arsenal without adding yet more chargers and batteries. By the way, the charger I use on my B&D drill battery is a "uni-volt" thing - no transformer anywhere, will charge any battery you can plug into it without overheating and killing them (the charger that came with the drill killed one of the two batteries it came with, the univolt one came with an older drill I picked up used long ago). Now of course, over time, the standards would likely change as tech improves and things can be smaller, but if there is only one or two legacy formats, they are more likely to be supported (I have a nifty "toy" in my desk drawer composed of all the adapters that came with new keyboards that extends almost from USB to DB9 serial). For batteries all that has to be "standard" is how they "attach" and where the contacts are, anything else could be up for grabs, even voltage, for most power tools.
As far as the IEC cords, what's funny is that since all new toys come with their own new power cord, most of us now have a collection of 20-30 in a box. Potentially much more useful than the other box full of PSU warts, but there is, of course, no "demand" for them once one owns two spares.
What really pisses me off is the extinction of the standard DIN dashboard hole for car radios. I know part of it is due to the radio being integrated with the GPS, HVAC, and coffee maker, but still. ħumanUser talk:Human 23:47, 3 January 2010 (UTC)
I think another issue (certainly in the UK) is that custom built-in units have no resale value and thus deter theft. Certainly during the 80's people would be buying knocked-off radios in pubs to replace the ones that had been stolen from their own vehicle. A radio version of musical chairs.  Lily Inspirate me. 19:08, 4 January 2010 (UTC)