Exilian

The Street of the Clerisy => Discussion and Debate - The Philosopher's Plaza => Topic started by: Jubal on April 21, 2012, 09:30:23 PM

Title: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 21, 2012, 09:30:23 PM
This will just be a pinned thread for rolling news chatter, like a discussion & debate form of the Booze Up. Just post and comment on any interesting news items you find out on the webs.


As a start, it looks like the economic crisis might be going to claim another government; if there's a list of rules for central European diplomacy, surely "Don't ignore the population of Prague" is very high up on it...
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-17799937
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on April 30, 2012, 03:02:20 AM
Something I saw:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/47225834#.T53x9tVOI2A
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 30, 2012, 10:09:09 PM
That's pretty cool!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-17868789
This is pretty scary - all about cyberwars et cetera. The amount of stuff that could be damaged by hacking is pretty scary...

I mean, is it just me, or should it be the case that the military or high-security nuclear facilities use different protcols and networks to the rest of us? I mean, the computers at a nuclear plant which control the plant just shouldn't be connected to the internet - otherwise it's really quite a big potential risk.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 06, 2012, 07:16:30 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-17975660

Hollande's won it! Huzzah!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 06, 2012, 07:20:10 PM
http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/sports/2012/05/06/kentucky-derby-gutierrez-rides-ill-have-another-to-win/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 13, 2012, 10:13:14 AM
Looks like new elections are on the cards for Greece, with Syriza the likely winners... on the plus side, at least they'll probably be decisive. I guess their lack of administrative experience could pose a problem, on the minus side. I think that the Germans will probably just cut them loose and kick them out of the Euro rather than renegotiate bailout deals.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on May 18, 2012, 10:10:46 PM
OH GOD NO!!

http://discovermagazine.com/2012/jun/03-hidden-epidemic-tapeworms-in-the-brain/article_view?b_start:int=0&-C= (http://discovermagazine.com/2012/jun/03-hidden-epidemic-tapeworms-in-the-brain/article_view?b_start:int=0&-C=)

WHAT HAVE I JUST READ?! :o
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 18, 2012, 10:20:30 PM
Oh, so that's what is wrong with me. (http://forums.alpinezone.com/gallery/data/796/crazy_smiley.gif)

But seriously that is quite f'ed up.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 18, 2012, 10:43:17 PM
Ew. I think that's about as much as can be said there...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 21, 2012, 11:22:19 PM
I could almost post this one in the boob thread:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/47504332/ns/world_news-europe/#.T7q9D8W-0nk

Not interesting, but still. ;)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 26, 2012, 12:12:29 PM
http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/05/25/11866152-harley-davidson-motorcycle-swept-away-by-japan-tsunami-to-be-preserved-in-museum?lite/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 26, 2012, 06:21:44 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-18221461

This is very depressing and worrying... and abhorrent. Syria's military just seems to be out of control now.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 26, 2012, 07:10:56 PM
Sick, just sick. (http://www.smileyfaces.ws/smileys/angry/animated-smileys-angry-043.gif) And this will only embolden the protesters...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 27, 2012, 04:02:24 PM
http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2012/05/27/device-may-let-humans-communicate-with-dolphins/

Star Trek IV anyone? :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 05, 2012, 10:28:33 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-18280997
I thought this was kinda cute. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 10, 2012, 04:27:44 PM
http://apps.facebook.com/theguardian/p/387z7

How do I claim the freakin' camels though?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 17, 2012, 01:07:23 AM
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/47844742/ns/us_news-christian_science_monitor/#.T90fIMW-0nk

Not sure what this has to do with christian science...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 17, 2012, 11:41:51 AM
Nor me, but I must say I think we have law courts for a reason. Self defence or defence of others is one thing, summary execution quite another.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 17, 2012, 04:37:21 PM
http://worldnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/06/17/12260721-greeks-go-to-the-polls-in-vote-that-threatens-to-shake-world-economy?lite

That Orthodox priest looks exactly like they do in Barbarian Invasion. ;D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 17, 2012, 05:15:02 PM
I can't help but feeling Orthodox priests get it right much more than Catholic & Protestant ones.

I mean, take the classic example of biblical teachings on killing:

DOCTRINE SAYS: Priests, you may not shed blood.
ORTHODOX: Right, that means not killing people.
CATHOLIC: armadillo... hm. I know! *Grabs a mace and starts beating people senseless*

Who d'you think will win though? Samaras or "Sexy Alexei"?  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Captain Carthage on June 17, 2012, 11:13:58 PM
Jubal, you theology better than most, can you describe the standout features and teachings of the Orthodox Church better than Wikipedia?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 18, 2012, 01:43:33 PM
Arp, I've mostly only done Catholic/Lutheran/Calvinist differences, so probably not very easily. The key thing is that they don't have any of the "infallible pope" stuff, I guess; their leader, the Patriarch of Constantinople, is seen more as a "first among equals". There used to be 5 patriarchs (Rome, Alexandria, Constantinople, Antioch, Jerusalem) but all bar Rome and Constantinople disappeared in the first wave of Islamic invasions, and the remaining two then split. They're very into icons of saints, different dress code, and their churches look very different (the Western church building is based on the Roman basilica, the Eastern is a more square, domed building).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Teejackbo on June 18, 2012, 06:50:50 PM
Not exactly news, but funny: http://notalwaysright.com/dovahkiins-day-off/19832 XD
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 19, 2012, 10:04:51 PM
Wut?

http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2012-03/09/230-percent-efficient-leds?utm_source=Outbrain&utm_medium=CPC&utm_campaign=Outbrain+Trial (http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2012-03/09/230-percent-efficient-leds?utm_source=Outbrain&utm_medium=CPC&utm_campaign=Outbrain+Trial)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 19, 2012, 10:44:54 PM
That is seriously cool.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Son of the King on June 20, 2012, 12:55:05 AM
<3 Physics.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Phoenixguard09 on June 22, 2012, 05:28:07 AM
Well I''m work now but I just found this little gem.

http://www.qt.com.au/story/2012/06/14/accused-goes-foul-mouthed-rampage/

WARNING: STRONG LANGUAGE. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Son of the King on June 22, 2012, 06:50:57 PM
That judge is a boss.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Captain Carthage on June 22, 2012, 08:44:14 PM
Classiest judge I have ever heard.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 22, 2012, 09:30:19 PM
I suggest Triumph points to that judge.  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 25, 2012, 10:01:29 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-18574279

RIP Lonesome George.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Teejackbo on June 25, 2012, 03:53:42 PM
D: R.I.P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 25, 2012, 10:11:38 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K311uSEf-3k
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Doomchild on June 25, 2012, 10:17:34 PM
great film, but also very sad that poor old George has passed on to the great, whatever giant tortoise like, in the sky.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on July 03, 2012, 07:37:16 AM
http://spectrum.ieee.org/computing/software/apes-with-apps/0 (http://spectrum.ieee.org/computing/software/apes-with-apps/0)

Wow. Just...Wow.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gen_Glory on July 03, 2012, 04:09:58 PM
rome II: total war

nuff said lol
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Captain Carthage on July 04, 2012, 02:00:28 PM
http://uk.news.yahoo.com/scientists-hail-god-particle-073025008.html

Guys we found it!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 04, 2012, 09:13:31 PM
Science FTW!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 05, 2012, 12:02:21 PM
Stephen Hawking apparently just lost $100 because he bet another scientist against it being found.  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 26, 2012, 11:52:15 PM
http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/fivering_circus/2012/07/_1936_olympics_rowing_the_greatest_underdog_nazi_defeating_american_olympic_victory_you_ve_never_heard_of_.html
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 30, 2012, 04:02:57 PM
Old news?  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 30, 2012, 11:17:58 PM
You never said the topic of discussion had to be new. ;)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 01, 2012, 10:23:53 PM
http://msn.foxsports.com/olympics/badminton/story/eight-badminton-players-expelled-from-olympics-for-throwing-matches-080112

I figured as much from the Chinese.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 02, 2012, 10:59:41 PM
http://msn.foxsports.com/olympics/cycling/story/miriam-welte-kristina-vogel-germany-wins-womens-team-sprint-gold-medal-china-disqualified-080212

At it again.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 17, 2012, 12:39:51 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-19281492

Assange is going to Ecuador! Except he isn't because we won't let him. So we're in another diplomatic row with a South American country. Yay.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-19288749

Also, this.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 17, 2012, 01:18:17 AM
Quote
The moose managed to flee the scene unharmed.
Well thank God for this.  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on August 26, 2012, 01:16:33 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-19383333
Noticed this on the news and I was just wondering what you portugalnuggets fellas think what should/ what shall be done in Syria?
 
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 26, 2012, 01:19:24 PM
I thought they had already found a bunch of bodies awhile ago... maybe that was somewhere else...

But what can be done about it?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 26, 2012, 01:20:45 PM
I think trying to unite the Syrian opposition is really the most important thing. Assad is unlikely to survive either way, but the key thing is making sure that there is a single, accountable opposition. That way other countries (hello Qatar?) can help the opposition out without worrying about fuelling mass sectarian violence.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 26, 2012, 01:45:06 PM
How would one unite the Syrian opposition?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gen_Glory on August 26, 2012, 02:33:12 PM
well unless large reserves of oil are discovered NATO is going to do diddly armadillo about it
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 26, 2012, 02:43:39 PM
We could do something about it. Come on E-Team let's go!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 26, 2012, 04:18:45 PM
"Don't worry, ma'am; we're from the internet"  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 26, 2012, 04:51:08 PM
I'm ready.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on August 26, 2012, 06:56:40 PM
portugal it I'll join, getting bored of being unemployed.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on August 31, 2012, 09:16:17 AM
http://dailycurrant.com/2012/08/30/bill-nye-blasts-todd-akin-challenges-debate/ (http://dailycurrant.com/2012/08/30/bill-nye-blasts-todd-akin-challenges-debate/) WARNING: THERE ARE PORTUGALS IN THIS ARTICLE

This has to be one of the funniest things I've ever read, not just for the idiocy of the congressman, but also Bill Nye's sterling reaction.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 31, 2012, 09:58:48 AM
So I guess he's not dead then. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on September 01, 2012, 08:08:00 PM
The failings of alcohol: http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/08/28/13531163-sheriff-drunken-man-turns-off-power-on-poultry-farm-causes-death-of-70000-chickens?lite

I feel sorry for all the people who would have feasted on all that delicious bird meat. :'(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 02, 2012, 11:55:32 PM
Seems like a pretty crappy way of keeping chickens, frankly. Open air, free range living, etc, for poultry may seem like luxuries or silly but they do really make a difference in some situations.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on September 04, 2012, 12:52:38 AM
http://www.cnn.com/2012/09/03/showbiz/michael-clarke-duncan/index.html

Sad.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Son of the King on September 06, 2012, 09:05:40 PM
That elk/bear shenanigans was beautiful. How did I miss that post? :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 13, 2012, 04:03:16 PM
http://www.avaaz.org/en/stop_the_corporate_death_star/?bLJENbb&v=17866

Interesting petition that just got emailed to me. Looks like another of these global trade deals designed to lock down on internet intellectual property use.

More information here:
http://www.publicknowledge.org/blog/whats-actually-tpp
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans-Pacific_Strategic_Economic_Partnership
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Ashanorath on September 13, 2012, 08:24:46 PM
Well, SOPA accomplished almost nothing. And this doesn't even effect Europe.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 13, 2012, 08:27:21 PM
Being fair;
-> SOPA got shelved, this hasn't been shelved.
-> If it affects the US, it affects American websites. Which is to say most of the internet.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Ashanorath on September 13, 2012, 08:47:01 PM
We'll see. But I don't really see that hapening, at least the part about internet. It isn't realy easy to control internet and its trafic. Just look at tpb, after who knows how many lawsuits their servers were never closed for more than 10 days at a time. All those lawsuits didn't even achive in finding the location of their server.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 13, 2012, 09:31:36 PM
Ah, that's the thing. It IS pretty damned easy, just currently the law doesn't require ISPs to keep all the relevant data. If it changes and they have to keep all the data on who's sending what where it suddenly totally changes the game. I don't think it will happen, but we can't afford to be blasé about it either.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Ashanorath on September 13, 2012, 09:47:46 PM
Well, I'm pretty sure that something like that would lead to way too much commotion.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Doomchild on September 15, 2012, 11:36:30 AM
I f***ing hate the world we live in. It wouldnt cause too much commotion, people would just roll over and die like they always do.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on September 21, 2012, 12:27:56 AM
http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/09/20/13993070-ohio-amish-sect-leader-followers-found-guilty-of-hate-crimes-in-hair-attacks?lite

This is sort of local news around here, and good news at that. :P Damn Amish like this think they can live outside of the laws of this country, and this guy is practically a medieval land baron. He owns like a thousand acres or something, he has about 18 kids (and if they work he takes their money), he got several million bucks from selling drilling leases on his land (then claimed that he couldn't attend the trials because he had to stay home and farm to sustain his family). He did other stuff like getting other guy's wives to sleep with him so he could "cleanse" their soul. So I'm glad him and his followers got what they had coming.

On a more humorous note, I had some fun with this when it first happened - since I work with Amish guys I was saying to them "So I see you still have your beard." :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on September 21, 2012, 09:20:22 PM
http://www.opposingviews.com/i/health/valerie-spruill-unknowingly-married-her-father-had-3-children

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh what is up with that town?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on September 22, 2012, 10:11:44 PM
People that are *that* religious are usually that stupid :P Quite honestly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on September 22, 2012, 10:23:12 PM
http://www.opposingviews.com/i/health/valerie-spruill-unknowingly-married-her-father-had-3-children

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh what is up with that town?

WUT? That just shouldn't happen...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on September 23, 2012, 01:55:23 PM
http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/136408-nasa-working-on-faster-than-light-travel-says-warp-drives-are-plausible
FTL Travel? YES PLEASE.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on September 23, 2012, 02:27:41 PM
In Star Trek, Zephram Cochrane successfully pilots the first warp ship on April 5th, 2063. I suppose it is possible that real history comes close to that.

I approve. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on September 23, 2012, 02:31:08 PM
I just hope I'm around to see the first FTL ships...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 28, 2012, 11:09:41 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-19751695

Meanwhile in Canada...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on September 29, 2012, 12:29:10 AM
Hehehe.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on October 01, 2012, 09:41:07 PM
"One day... illegal cheese trafficking will move more millions than all existing illicit drugs put together, just wait and see..."
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gen_Glory on October 02, 2012, 09:26:41 AM
haha a have a canadian friend here who is peeved enough with the canada jokes, might just have to annoy some more
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Ladyhawk on October 02, 2012, 01:02:33 PM
What do you guys think of Julian Assange??
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Skull on October 02, 2012, 04:08:30 PM
What do you guys think of Julian Assange??
Free him.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on October 02, 2012, 08:21:32 PM
http://rt.com/news/assange-condom-no-dna-277/ (http://rt.com/news/assange-condom-no-dna-277/)
I'll just leave this here.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 02, 2012, 08:54:59 PM
Who?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on October 02, 2012, 09:34:49 PM
Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 03, 2012, 12:21:35 AM
The master of my college had the best summary of Julian I've heard:
"He's a very undignified flag-carrier, in my opinion, for a very important issue"
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on October 06, 2012, 12:40:55 AM
I found this... dunno, cute :P French beekeepers in Ribeauville abuzz over blue honey (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-19840555)

And slightly back on topic, I think it's totally possible and safe to say that they are major powers involved behind the whole accusations against Assange. The man is a modern hero, and hopefully doesn't become a martyr defending a just cause.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 06, 2012, 11:39:56 AM
I wouldn't go so far as to say that he's a hero - and some of his opinions I strongly disagree with (for example, I don't think governments should be forced to release every document they ever have ever, simply because there is some consideration of the safety of their troops, police, or even general public to think about).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on October 06, 2012, 09:54:07 PM
Didn't know of that statement of his (nor do I share it really), however, I don't like the fact that some nations are so reluctant on hiding everything they have (like those recorded conversations between powerful people expressing their own opinion on some issues) But I still think it's a great job what he's doing. That's why I find it rather heroic of how he had the guts of standing up against so many people, when most of us would chicken out when having such a chance of revealing so many confidential files.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 07, 2012, 01:43:01 AM
I'd say it's brave, not heroic.

Brave just implies he has guts - which is true. Heroic implies both that the action was brave and challenging, and that it was undoubtedly in the right and had an overall beneficial effect. I'm really not sure that is or was the case.

Essentially, there are some bad reasons why conversations are kept secret - for example, because nations are torturing people or planning illegal wars or cynically manipulating situations to their own gain. In these cases, it is clearly a good thing when someone exposes it. On the other hand, diplomacy played with all the cards showing is a much more dangerous game. It allows countries to find pretexts for war much more easily, it could include transmissions of weaponry blueprints or troop movements that could put innocent people in danger (not just the troops, eg "Ooh, this cable shows us our enemies are planning to move all their troops to this area. We can then bomb the civilian towns over that way without repercussions"). It's also important that people are able to speak their mind when planning policy, so that governments can hear a range of opinions and get a good outcome. If political scientists or policy experts know their views will be leaked they will be less likely to say anything at all, weakening policy and giving worse outcomes. It makes diplomatic solutions harder to achieve to problems as well as politicians of different countries cannot make difficult deals without everyone knowing, potentially increasing the risk of problems being solved via military means.

The problem I have with Assange is that he doesn't distinguish - he just sees the first sentence of the previous paragraph, decides secrecy is evil, and then releases everything. It's bravery, I'll give him that, but it's not heroism.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 07, 2012, 01:33:27 PM
He ain't no Fox Mulder that's for sure.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Ladyhawk on October 07, 2012, 10:38:01 PM
There was a television movie made about him and was played last night. Showing his background. It was quite interesting.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 11, 2012, 05:14:03 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-south-west-wales-19906942

Meanwhile, in Wales...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on October 11, 2012, 08:16:08 PM
Hahaha portugaling get on it lad! Starting pretty early there.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 11, 2012, 10:43:35 PM
You're sure that's not Ireland?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on October 11, 2012, 11:44:20 PM
http://i.imgur.com/7QvbL.jpg
While not technically a news story per se, this image literally shocked me to the core. The Golden Dawn Party in Greece, who are literally neo nazis (and doing well in the polls might I add), have attacked a man while the police just watched. This is what he was tweeting.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on October 12, 2012, 10:47:15 PM
Extremes are never good :/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Skull on October 13, 2012, 10:30:22 AM
Soo....He was tweeting while being punched...?
:/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 13, 2012, 02:00:00 PM
Yeah... I'm not buying into it based on that question.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 13, 2012, 02:14:18 PM
I don't know if I buy the actual tweets, but the fact that Golden Dawn is fricken' scary I certainly buy into.

Economically, it's arguable that Greece is in as bad a mess as 1930s Germany. Which I know fires off Godwin's Law, but even so - GD are a worrying, worrying political force.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on October 13, 2012, 10:33:17 PM
I think he was just using Twitter to spread out his experience... and was hampered by the character limit used by Twitter. I think he was narrating what happened to him after the whole incident, rather than being able to type while his glasses were knocked off.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Skull on October 13, 2012, 10:58:37 PM
I don't know if I buy the actual tweets, but the fact that Golden Dawn is fricken' scary I certainly buy into.

Economically, it's arguable that Greece is in as bad a mess as 1930s Germany. Which I know fires off Godwin's Law, but even so - GD are a worrying, worrying political force.
Nazis,what did ya expect?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on October 15, 2012, 01:11:23 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-19929620

Interesting article on China, found it interesting. Wanted to share it with you guys (although Jubal already knew of it somehow, I bet ;D )
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 15, 2012, 04:25:57 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-19944833

Gurkhas are awesome.  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on October 15, 2012, 05:17:05 PM
Reminds me of the Ghurka who killed 32 of the enemy single-handedly. His GPMG ran out of ammunition so he "neutralised" some using his tripod. Guys are insane.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on October 15, 2012, 08:29:55 PM
I remember a news story while ago of a Gurkha who'd just retired and was travelling on a train (in India I think) when it was attacked by an armed gang of muggers. Then they started telling a girl to strip so he attacked them and injured a fair number before the rest ran away. He was offered a senior position in the army if he re-enlisted after that.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 16, 2012, 12:06:04 PM
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-205_162-57533031/see-what-felix-baumgartner-saw-during-his-jump/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on November 04, 2012, 02:23:56 PM
Apparently our MPs are above the law http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20196877 or it may now seem.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 19, 2012, 09:31:33 PM
In now, the death toll in Gaza has hit 100.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-20391558

The wilful stupidity of Israel's government in this astounds me. I don't honestly believe their actions are going to do anything other than escalate violence and endanger their citizens even more.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on November 21, 2012, 05:04:26 PM
Snakes on a plane! Except not quite. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-20423399 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-20423399) That movie had such a good plot. :P

Yeah Israel is crazy, but so is everyone.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 21, 2012, 06:17:40 PM
I'd argue that Israel is one of the crazier countries, or at least one of the ones with the largest disconnect between stated aims and results of actions.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 21, 2012, 09:56:31 PM
At least they don't portugal around. lol
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 21, 2012, 10:03:38 PM
No, they just use ridiculous quantities of heavy weaponry in a situation which really doesn't justify it in the slightest.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 21, 2012, 10:16:35 PM
Which is called not portugaling around. ;D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 22, 2012, 03:41:02 PM
I'd rather they portugaled around a bit more and portugaled up a bit less, frankly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 27, 2012, 12:27:35 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-20501091

Yay for journalists ending with snarky one liners. Particularly about the robot apocalypse.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 06, 2013, 01:01:45 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-20920848

Good work Brazil, good work. Arrest those cats.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Marcus on January 06, 2013, 01:08:33 PM
Find it rather amusing that Wegelin & Co are closing due to US fines, yet they transferred most of their staff and operations to another bank, so the closure will do sweet F.A. to their operations, except the loss of a name, which in that business probably isn't too damaging.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 08, 2013, 01:45:01 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-20942801

"Three fire crews were called in to rescue a marooned squirrel after it got stuck on an island in a pond."

Welcome to Britain.  ;D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 09, 2013, 11:51:30 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20961651
The home of democracy and land of the free doesn't want us to have a referendum?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 16, 2013, 03:26:10 PM
If only:

(http://www.smbc-comics.com/comics/20080502.gif)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on January 25, 2013, 07:49:01 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20961651
The home of democracy and land of the free doesn't want us to have a referendum?

 The US just wants to keep its puppet in the EU. The US isn't exactly the land of the free anyway. Land of the delusionally free, maybe.

I hope the EU gets reformed a bit anyway, some of it is a bit unnecessary but I wouldn't want to just leave it entirely.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on January 26, 2013, 08:52:39 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-stoke-staffordshire-21199572  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-stoke-staffordshire-21199572)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 26, 2013, 03:02:44 PM
Owch. That is not nice at all.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Captain Carthage on February 11, 2013, 01:32:05 PM
The pope's quit.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21409149
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on February 11, 2013, 06:18:25 PM
Does anyone here give a crap who the next Chief Child Catcher shall be?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on February 11, 2013, 09:30:36 PM
I thought God chose him to be pope, surely that would be reason enough not to quit?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Captain Carthage on February 12, 2013, 09:29:23 AM
I thought God chose him to be pope, surely that would be reason enough not to quit?

He is rather sickly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on February 12, 2013, 10:54:09 PM
Wrestling's been removed from the 2020 olympics, although its not a final decision and I wouldn't be too surprised the IOC change their minds.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 16, 2013, 01:11:25 AM
I thought God chose him to be pope, surely that would be reason enough not to quit?
There are several precedents for doing so, apparently God can choose to kick people out again.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 16, 2013, 04:40:19 AM
http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/02/15/us-russia-meteorite-idUSBRE91E05Z20130215
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 17, 2013, 12:56:28 AM
20 Hiroshimas  8)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on February 20, 2013, 03:43:38 PM
I've always wondered if a pope got in who was a radical liberal and started changing everything about/renouncing god/declaring everyone has to wear silly hats on Tuesdays or something, what would actually happen. Since he is infallible... I suppose they have to claim he has gone insane or something? Who knows.

73 votes for the Don't Cook Party. Not entirely sure what their policies are apart from encouraging people to not cook their own food. :)

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-21521130

Been some really odd things going on lately.

Edit: like this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21534215
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on February 20, 2013, 03:44:20 PM
I thought God chose him to be pope, surely that would be reason enough not to quit?
There are several precedents for doing so, apparently God can choose to kick people out again.

That is the great thing about God, he works in mysterious ways.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 02, 2013, 10:13:11 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21643100

This is really rather cute.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on March 18, 2013, 07:58:17 AM
And that is why I'm a dog person...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 31, 2013, 01:28:47 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21974426

This really does not look like fun.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 24, 2013, 02:56:19 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-norfolk-22652402

Norfolk County Council not led by a Conservative, probably for the first time in my life and certainly for the first time in over a decade.  ;D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on May 24, 2013, 05:42:07 PM
Hell yeah.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on May 24, 2013, 05:57:54 PM
Wow, conservative got burned! :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 26, 2013, 11:36:40 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-22673156

This is really disturbing/worrying. For a party that claims to be about individualism and a party that claims to be for the people, Labour and the Tories sure do have a lot of people who wouldn't know civil liberties if they smashed them in the face with a claw hammer.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on May 27, 2013, 02:00:14 AM
Typical governmental knee jerk reaction. I really hope this blows over as usual.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 27, 2013, 09:55:11 PM
It's certainly very concerning, particularly since with terrorist attacks and so on popular opinion tends to swing behind whatever politicians claim will keep us safer.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on May 28, 2013, 12:19:01 AM
True. Fear makes people stupider than usual.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 30, 2013, 11:17:36 PM
http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/30/world/asia/siberia-mammoth-blood-discovery/index.html
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on May 30, 2013, 11:41:37 PM
That would be awesome, if it's at all possible.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 01, 2013, 12:17:55 PM
I can't be bothered to provide a link, but basically there are large scale protests in Istanbul and a couple of other Turkish cities in response to police use of tear gas on a fairly small group of peaceful protesters. There some are violent clashes going on now, with police using rubber bullets and tear gassing the crap out of everything. The army has been handing out gas masks to protesters and reportedly offering shelter (the army has traditionally been a strong supporter of secular control within Turkey and has not got on well with the current government who are accused of being an islamic movement rather than secular.)
So far the Turkish President has done nothing to prevent the police brutality and has asked protesters to cease protesting on the grounds that he was elected democratically.
Edit:
I bothered to find a link http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22739423
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 01, 2013, 05:43:06 PM
The police are retreating from the main protest area (Taksim square in Istanbul) now, this is huge.

Historical background here is that Turkey's cities & west tend to be more secularist, the countryside and south/east more religious. Istanbul is particularly secularist; the idea of Turkey according to its founder, Kemal Ataturk, was to be a fully secular state, and this is upheld by the judiciary and military mostly. The democratic government are more Islamist now though and a lot of secular Turks are worried about a greater public role for religion. Apparently there are protests in Ankara as well as Istanbul (Ankara is the actual capital, Istanbul is the largest city but not the capital).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 02, 2013, 11:29:56 PM
It seems to be dying down, although a lot of turks from TW seem to think a fair amount of armadillo is still going down. Trouble is the Turkish media isn't covering the riots at all (apart from the newspapers.)
And ironically enough Erdogan is apparently getting criticised by Syria for his heavy handed approach.  Facepalm.
Edit:
And it seems like its not dying down so much. Apparently some protesters have got hold of a demolition vehicle and are chasing riot vans around.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 03, 2013, 08:42:36 AM
(http://i.imgur.com/PAKETMd.png)

You mean like that? ^

http://imgur.com/a/JvJD3 (http://imgur.com/a/JvJD3)
http://imgur.com/a/gKAsu (http://imgur.com/a/gKAsu)

Those two just show what's going on in a nice image medium as opposed to walls of text

Edit:

This was Turkey today:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 03, 2013, 09:44:53 AM
I can't help imagining the benny hill theme tune as that excavator chases riot vans around.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 07, 2013, 03:43:50 PM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/06/us-tech-giants-nsa-data (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/06/us-tech-giants-nsa-data)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/07/clapper-secret-nsa-surveillance-prism (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/07/clapper-secret-nsa-surveillance-prism)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2013/jun/07/uk-gathering-secret-intelligence-nsa-prism (http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2013/jun/07/uk-gathering-secret-intelligence-nsa-prism)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-22809541 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-22809541)

All this makes this: http://i.imgur.com/ffOqkI4.jpg (http://i.imgur.com/ffOqkI4.jpg) more worrying...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: joek on June 08, 2013, 10:17:29 AM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/06/us-tech-giants-nsa-data (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/06/us-tech-giants-nsa-data)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/07/clapper-secret-nsa-surveillance-prism (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/jun/07/clapper-secret-nsa-surveillance-prism)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2013/jun/07/uk-gathering-secret-intelligence-nsa-prism (http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2013/jun/07/uk-gathering-secret-intelligence-nsa-prism)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-22809541 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-22809541)

All this makes this: http://i.imgur.com/ffOqkI4.jpg (http://i.imgur.com/ffOqkI4.jpg) more worrying...


Yes indeed. The Guardian reckons that Microsoft and Google denied knowledge of PRISM, but if tech companies that big can't secure their data properly, that's another reason to be worried, frankly...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 08, 2013, 10:20:52 AM
The best thing was the US defence of PRISM - "We were only going to use it to spy on foreigners outside of our jurisdiction..." LIKE THAT MAKES IT ANY BETTER?!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 08, 2013, 11:49:34 AM
Honestly, I don't mind. So what if the US intel knows who you are and what you're doing (which by the way, they won't)? A) They don't care about us. At all. B) They aren't going to sell our bank account details or anything. They're looking for national threats and the like, tighter security from terrorist threat and the like is only a good thing. If it's true, I'd be in favour.

The best thing was the US defence of PRISM - "We were only going to use it to spy on foreigners outside of our jurisdiction..." LIKE THAT MAKES IT ANY BETTER?!

Yes actually it does. Spying on foreigners is expected, spying on your own people is telling them that their own national security doesn't trust them.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 08, 2013, 12:26:21 PM
I don't mind on a personal level, if the US government wants to waste money looking through my internet history it's their problem.

On a theoretical and general level though, I think it's profoundly dangerous. I just don't think governments should have the ability to spy on individual citizens - yeah, the current US security apparatus with its current priorities doesn't particularly care about me, but do I trust that there will never be a US administration that might ever want to interfere with anything I could conceivably do? Because I don't think that's the case at all. Privacy of communications is a fairly integral right as far as I'm concerned, it's really important for the maintenance of political and religious freedoms. People have a right to oppose actions by their government or another that they disagree with, and they have a right to express those views without those governments being able to snoop on them and thereby take action against them. Whilst terrorist groups of the sort we have at the moment I clearly oppose, the US has been known to prop up pretty nasty dictatorships and regimes in the past and if they're into large-scale international communications tapping there are worries there too.

Clearly where the security services believe there's a real threat, they're going to need to look at communications, but that's what judicial warrants are for. Pre-emptively scanning and tapping communications or doing so without a warrant opens up fundamental issues in terms of personal freedoms, because even if the current security services are hunting for terrorists who I vehemently oppose, if they can read everyone's communications then supposing a government wanted to start opening files on their political opponents (McCarthyism style) they could just roll ahead and do it.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 08, 2013, 01:33:09 PM
It's military intelligence, they aren't on any one politicians payroll and surely even they can see that the fallout for using this tool as a means for a politician or government to spy on opponents undermines any sort of foreign relations they require for ease of intel among allies such as GB. I don't doubt that the potential uses for this are worrying but in reality, I would feel safer with this in place. There is a lot less to fear from military intelligence than the people they're trying to hunt down. Given this, sharing of this intel even with the UK would be highly unlikely at most.

Judicial warrants must have a lead to go on, this is a tool to find those leads. It has completely different applications.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 08, 2013, 11:21:30 PM
Military intelligence is one thing, and I can admit that anything used to spy on terrorists is useful. However, can you imagine al-Qaeda organising a Google Hangout? Or a Skype conference call? No, the very concept of a terrorist organisation, especially ones in the poorer areas of the world, using multinational corporations from the "West" who they despise so is quite frankly laughable. It's uses in counter-terrorism are limited at best. Can you imagine a Taliban facebook page? Only the most foolish of people would plot an attack using a method of communication that can be so easily intercepted.

No, this technology is much more likely going to be used to counter piracy. We've already seen from what's happening to Kim Dotcom that the US doesn't give an armadillo about where they can and can't arrest someone, as he is standing trial for a crime which isn't a crime in a country he's never visited. Combine this with the fact that the current government receives a LOT of their funds from Hollywood and an interesting picture is built.I know that that sounds a little tinfoil hat but you have to admit, things add up. Not to mention that Dotcom's arrest was the day after SOPA failed. Anyway, back to topic, PRISM is not exactly the most useful tool possible in counter-terrorism, save from suspects in first world countries as it takes away another form of communication.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 09, 2013, 01:41:38 AM
Well you kinda hit the nail on the head there. Using it on dumbass terrorists already integrated in the west is almost certainly their target. I don't have any confidence that it can be used to effectively track down Al-Qaeda or Taliban or Majuahadin or whatever in the mid east, not because they lack technology and aren't hypocritical enough to use it but simply because it would be nigh on impossible to distinguish the actual terrorists from sympathisers, which I think isn't punishable by fiery death just yet. But finding the ones here before they do any damage seems like a pretty good thing to me.

We've been using a form of this for even more years, any phrases repeated enough times or that have a pattern sent via text(don't believe this works with calls) are flagged up with our counter-terrorist guys.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 14, 2013, 07:25:10 PM
http://www.buzzfeed.com/jordanzakarin/turkish-protestor-chorus-sings-les-mis

Les Mis, as practically applied by Turks.  ;D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 16, 2013, 11:10:47 PM
That is brilliant :D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on June 17, 2013, 11:02:41 PM
There's a lot about arming the Syrians at the moment, with Russia and the BNP wanting us to arm the government, while others want to arm the rebels. Which side do you support, if any?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 28, 2013, 11:20:20 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-23092817
And a bunch of armadillo in Egypt is burning again.


I definitely don't support Assad, he's a straight-out dictatorial asshole. I'm dubious about supporting the rebels and we certainly don't want to be giving them a no-strings credit card for military hardware, because they're a mix of people "on our side" AKA democrats and people who are basically after a theocratic/sectarian state which would be an appalling mess.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on July 22, 2013, 07:11:09 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23401076

Oh noes they are stealing all of teh porn.

Any thoughts on this? I like the idea of it myself. Also
"In addition, the prime minister will say possessing online pornography depicting rape will be illegal."
armadillo I'd always assumed that was already the case.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 22, 2013, 10:05:23 AM
Quote from:  Hatchelt
This isn’t really about porn though is it? This is the thin end of the wedge whereby my Glorious Leaders will soon decide which sites are right for me and which aren’t.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Lady Grey on July 22, 2013, 12:01:56 PM
http://www.buzzfeed.com/jordanzakarin/turkish-protestor-chorus-sings-les-mis

Les Mis, as practically applied by Turks.  ;D

This is amazing. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Lady Grey on July 22, 2013, 12:06:48 PM
This porn thing is actually just an automatic parental control type thing by Internet providers that you can turn off right?

Because that seems fine to me. It's just if they were totally banning it I'd disagree... It makes you wonder where censorship would stop if that happened.

Obviously though, I'm of the opinion that illegal porn should be blocked/taken down/banned etc.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Son of the King on July 22, 2013, 12:11:41 PM
While it is fine where porn is related (maybe have it so that you opt in to having porn blocked, rather than opting out though), the quote CG got from the comments on the BBC article is right, once censorship has started it will be harder to stop.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on July 22, 2013, 03:31:47 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23401076

Oh noes they are stealing all of teh porn.

Any thoughts on this? I like the idea of it myself. Also
"In addition, the prime minister will say possessing online pornography depicting rape will be illegal."
armadillo I'd always assumed that was already the case.

In the porn industry simulated rape is common, couples do this irl as well though it's considered an oddity usually. Though then again who draws the line as to what is 'simulated', it's not as easy as: well she's paid for it and knows what she's getting into.  Because I very much doubt that is always the case.

I'm in two minds about this. Yes for sure that kids are watching it and the type of 'it' too young. But say you have an early twenties male living with his parents who for various shallow and self loathing reasons watches porn. Would said unnamed individual want his internet bill paying parents to know about said hypothetical habits? It may be legal but it's also a little shameful.

Then again pirating sites are banned and we all know how that goes.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 22, 2013, 04:33:00 PM
It also raises the question of what counts as porn, which I think is a major, major issue here.

So I'm massively in favour of rape porn being illegal, that I think is a fairly obvious point to target. Also further crackdowns on illegal pornography in general, possibly including putting the onus more on the person providing the child with computer access, would be good.

On the other hand, the stuff on legal porn being censored I'm pretty dubious about;
1) pornography is classed as basically any sexually explicit matter used for sexual gratification. The last part of that definition is user-end so not in question here; if any erect penis or pair of exposed breasts counts as sexually explicit, then most of the main sites on the internet should be blocked by this legislation.
2) this confuses issues around pornography and implies that everyone who's ever seen tits on the internet is on a slippery slope to being a sex offender and in jail for the rest of their lives, and/or that it's unnatural or wrong for children during puberty to decide the other gender's genitals actually look sort of interesting. I think it is very wrong to give children lots of access to over-sexualised material, but it's also important that we don't end up with them all falling back on illegal and harder to monitor (and potentially nastier) porn sources.
3) This would just generally make more sense as an opt-in system. I think everyone should have the option of not looking at porn and parents should be helped to avoid showing their children, but I generally don't like assumptions of censorship first and ask questions later.
4) "Studies suggest the filtering systems can be fooled quite easily and present no real obstacle to anyone that can use a search engine." - BBC News. How the hell is this going to work and who's liable? No practical solution has been suggested.
5) For softcore porn in particular I really don't think it's up to the government to decide what should be socially normative. Some (probably most) porn is demeaning to women, I don't doubt, and that is wrong. Some gives a very messed up view of sex and relationships, too, which is equally problematic. On the other hand some of these things we've got to deal with as a society not by clamping down but by creating and working with cultural norms.

So tl;dr version: cutting back on nastier forms of porn good, autocensoring legal porn impractical as a system and moreover could have negative unintended consequences.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gen_Glory on July 22, 2013, 07:43:34 PM
Don't most ISP already provide a parental lock?
And as this is being sold as protect the children, isn't it just a law to cover bad parents?

This seems like a precursor to more drastic internet monitoring, also this is a good way of pulling attention away from the fact we are being monitored by the government

Also http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/51746 sign it! SAVE OUR PORN
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 22, 2013, 09:31:12 PM
Purely hypothetical eh, Rob? ;D

The whole thing doesn't sit well with me, nor do I think it would with the majority of the folks in this country, what with our insane views on various freedoms and self-expression and junk.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on July 22, 2013, 09:49:25 PM
I have no idea what you mean c_g :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 22, 2013, 10:43:24 PM
I'm fairly sure it could be ruled unconstitutional in the US. Hopefully it won't get far here, depends how much of a moral crusade the papers decide to go on and how many people care I guess. Conflating the issue of legal porn use with child protection is really out of order though I think.

EDIT: Also this http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23409404 is a bad piece of science journalism and annoys me a lot. "Things aren't simple or dramatic so they must be wrong" isn't an argument. I wouldn't mind if he had a bunch of scientists on either side, but he doesn't, he's got a bunch of scientists arguing against... basically nothing.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Scarlet on July 23, 2013, 08:17:24 AM
Ohdeadgod. Just the title of the article. And then you keep reading.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 12, 2013, 01:25:34 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-23665106

SERIOUSLY WHAT THE HELL.

I mean, correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't that ruling go against pretty much the entire legal history of the US?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 12, 2013, 02:19:37 PM
One nutjob judge trying to throw their religious bullarmadillo around. It will get repealed by someone else I'm sure.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 12, 2013, 03:15:03 PM
Yeah, I figured it was one nutjob. Still, worrying that those sorts of people can get that high up in the legal profession.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Scarlet on August 12, 2013, 07:50:22 PM
OH FOR PITY'S SAKE!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on August 30, 2013, 08:27:09 PM
What are we thinking on the recent news on Syria? I'm not exactly shocked that our MPs voted against military action, but apparently I should be.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 30, 2013, 09:21:14 PM
Doesn't matter what I think here; if we do something people will say "get out of there, you have no right, stop being the world police etc." and if we don't do anything people be like "how cruel to stand aside and let these atrocities occur etc." There's no winning when you're American. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on September 02, 2013, 08:23:48 AM
Don't worry CG, whatever you guys do, Britain will inevitably follow like an obedient lapdog.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 02, 2013, 10:49:09 AM
It does actually look like we're not going to this time, which is interesting.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on September 02, 2013, 12:55:09 PM
Doesn't look like we are going to do anything either. Alobama passed it to congress even though they aren't in session and they will likely say no. All's well that ends well.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 02, 2013, 01:31:40 PM
Ironic, given the GOP still control the House of Representatives; I guess it's a catch-22 for them, either they stop Obama going to war (thus defeating Obama) and risk the argument that they failed the Syrians, or they have to tacitly accept Obama going to war.

I think it is fair that Congress have to justify going to war really, though there are risks in that sort of system. I'm sure Obama doesn't really want to go to war if he can help it; too much of his base of support was always about cheapening/getting out of big ground conflicts of the Iraq & Afghanistan type.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 04, 2013, 01:16:39 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-23957616

Looks like Congress may be a bit more hawkish than you thought, CG.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on September 04, 2013, 01:18:10 PM
Oh bloody hell. I call for a vote from the people.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 06, 2013, 10:40:01 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/23973673

Quote
A third of women believe there are varying degrees of rape, according to new figures.

The same proportion also think if a woman does not fight back, then she cannot have experienced rape.

...

A quarter of the 1,000 women surveyed wrongly thought if someone was drunk it could not be classed as rape, while 60% thought it did not count if a woman does not say no.

These figures are really quite worrying, the more specific sub-headings far more so (to me) than the headline given that it shows specifically how unaware some people are of what circumstances class as rape (aka ALL non-consensual sex).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on September 06, 2013, 11:01:00 PM

Jokes! Don't hate me. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on September 07, 2013, 08:15:21 AM
That video was funny, the news report wasn't though. Come to think of it, I don't remember ever having a sex-ed lesson where rape was discussed. I know its an uncomfortable topic, but clearly more people need educating on the laws regarding rape.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 07, 2013, 10:40:19 AM
That's true, I'm not sure we ever learned about it at all; we did an overview of the laws on assault, GBH, etc, if I recall, but rape just wasn't brought up. Which is really pretty concerning.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on September 10, 2013, 08:47:50 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-23986595

"The spells and things that you're reading in the Harry Potter books, those aren't just something that are made up, those are actual spells. Those are things that came from witchcraft books," says Tess.

Yes! Harry Potter is actually non-fiction, I was right.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Cuddly Khan on September 10, 2013, 10:43:48 AM
Replace a bad one with a worse one. That's how the government works.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on September 13, 2013, 05:00:21 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-23986595

"The spells and things that you're reading in the Harry Potter books, those aren't just something that are made up, those are actual spells. Those are things that came from witchcraft books," says Tess.

Yes! Harry Potter is actually non-fiction, I was right.

I wonder what they would think if they actually had a conversation with J.K Rowling about the origin of the spells (presumably she made them up). They would assume she was a witch then?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 25, 2013, 05:10:08 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-24270591

"Forgoing his cowboy boots for tennis shoes, Sen Cruz, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, railed all night against the Obama health law, calling it the country's "biggest jobs killer" and comparing his struggle to the fight against the Nazis, or the American Revolution."

Okay, so I acknowledge the rights of American politicians to oppose state healthcare. But to equate it to Nazism is a really severe political insult to anyone who DOES have that system - last I checked, Britain, which has the archetypal free at the point of use healthcare service Cruz so reviles, was fighting the Nazis before the Americans even decided to turn up to the party. Gah. I don't mind people disagreeing with my views, I just wish they wouldn't be quite so dumb about their rhetoric at times.  :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on November 29, 2013, 01:08:58 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-25145015 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-25145015)

Well that is some serious bullarmadillo.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on November 29, 2013, 03:35:45 AM
People do suck.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 03, 2013, 12:51:44 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-25180811

East Asia worries me; just that it could all go so so wrong so so quickly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 03, 2013, 01:45:53 PM
World War IV.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 03, 2013, 01:58:28 PM
Wait, when was III?  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 03, 2013, 02:09:52 PM
Cold War.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 03, 2013, 02:34:34 PM
I don't think I'd say that counted; the conflicts in it were too spread out, too indirect, and the big ones were rarely simultaneous. But you could argue it the other way of course.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 03, 2013, 02:47:56 PM
Whenever the next full-scale conflict erupts I think the Cold War will be re-labelled as WW3, similar to ye olde Great War.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on December 03, 2013, 06:28:20 PM
Just a question, what do you guys think of Davey C's latest attack on internet pornography? By that I mean his Opt-in porn ban.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 08, 2013, 12:13:03 PM
I don't want blocking machinery to be in the hands of ISPs or the state, except for things that are totally abhorrent and illegal like child porn (and even then the focus has to be nuking the websites and prosecuting the people who make them because that's where the actual abuse of children is occurring, not just trying to stop people finding them).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on December 09, 2013, 05:07:12 PM
Apparently these bans are how it started in China as well :/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 19, 2013, 11:35:51 PM
So, the first round of blocking seems to have included blocking sites helping rape survivors, sexual health advice centres, and sex education websites, and not a lot of actual porn.  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on December 19, 2013, 11:40:07 PM
Wow, I'm reeling with the shock there. I just can't believe that an attempt to ban porn hasn't worked!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 20, 2013, 01:38:07 PM
In other dramatic news, Cnut fails to turn back tides...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on December 20, 2013, 11:45:34 PM
To fit with our shocking theme, it rained in the North West today! As everyone knows this arid region rarely sees rainfall.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: debux on December 29, 2013, 09:33:58 PM
Rained in Egypt, didn't it? It was also awfully wintery here at the chilean coast, which was very strange. Dissipated a few days before. THE TIMES ARE A'CHANGING!

BTW, how do you think things will go in Thailand? By the look of things, it's going to turn into a stalemate and most likely (although sadly) some forceful intervention from some side. I'm not that informed though.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 29, 2013, 09:35:53 PM
Something's going on in Thailand?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 29, 2013, 09:37:08 PM
Political total stalemate, it's basically middle classes of Bangkok VS the government, who are billionaires themselves but are supported by the poor rural areas. Military coup not an impossible endgame but the military haven't really shown their hand yet.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on January 05, 2014, 02:07:31 PM
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/01/05/tripoli-library-burned_n_4543928.html?utm_hp_ref=uk (http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/01/05/tripoli-library-burned_n_4543928.html?utm_hp_ref=uk)

Obviously human loss is tragic, but this is pretty painful. If it is real anyway.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 05, 2014, 03:30:51 PM
Pretty portugaling stupid. Not the first time that's happened, and unfortunately won't be the last.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 05, 2014, 03:46:29 PM
Indeed.  :(

(Hell, it's been happening at least since the Romans...)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on January 05, 2014, 09:39:16 PM
That is no consolation! I'm still mad about it! haha.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 05, 2014, 09:57:38 PM
I wasn't suggesting it as consolation, I'm as distraught as you are :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Will on January 06, 2014, 01:24:50 PM
 :(

At least when people are killing each other in some war, it generally isn't a war I feel I should be involved in. It is someone else's dispute. But burning all these books I accept as a personal attack that demands REVENGE!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 22, 2014, 11:07:05 PM
http://www.jorvik-viking-festival.co.uk/2013/11/the-world-will-end-in-100-days-ragnarok-the-viking-apocalypse-predicted-for-22-february-2014/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 22, 2014, 11:13:41 PM
Well, given I'm currently moderately inebriated on mead, this seems wholly reasonable :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on February 23, 2014, 11:40:19 AM
armadillo, better stock up on booze before the panic buying starts.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 23, 2014, 12:18:11 PM
The ASNACs (students of Anglo-Saxon, Norse, and Celtic) are all excited about this :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 26, 2014, 07:21:03 PM
http://time.com/38409/north-korea-kim-jong-un-haircut/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Cuddly Khan on March 26, 2014, 07:42:25 PM
Everytime someone sets a date that the world will end, it won't happen.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 26, 2014, 09:01:48 PM
Wat.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on March 26, 2014, 11:35:06 PM
If it's not too UK/EU cetric, did anyone catch the Clegg VS Farage debate? What are peoples views on the issue or the debate in general?

If you didn't catch it it's here: http://www.lbc.co.uk/watch-lbc-leaders-debate-live---26th-march-87667 (I may be bad at internets but took me portugaling ages to find it!)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Cuddly Khan on March 27, 2014, 10:03:32 AM
http://www.news.com.au/technology/online/kim-dotcom-launches-awesome-internet-party-for-faster-cheaper-web-in-new-zealand/story-fnjwnhzf-1226866590315 I was laughing all the way through this listening to it on the radio on the way home. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on April 09, 2014, 12:47:30 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/6057734.stm Lol, what a portugalwit.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on April 09, 2014, 04:29:07 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/6057734.stm (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/6057734.stm) Lol, what a portugalwit.

Agreed, total portugalwit! People just aren't that rational when it comes to partner choice.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 10, 2014, 11:24:36 PM
Is it just me, or are we getting way too much insignificant crap about the Pistorius trial every goddamn day when there are really much more important things happening in the world?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on April 11, 2014, 12:18:35 AM
Must be a British thing?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Tom on April 11, 2014, 09:00:13 AM
It's practically the only thing on my stupid windows eight bing news feed. That and peaches geldof dying. Seriously, if these people weren't celebrities nobody would give a armadillo. It's not even like most modern celebrities are talented they're just reality tv show stars. What a load of bollocks :/ rant over
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on April 11, 2014, 11:31:55 AM
Yeah, I've stopped watching the news already, just read it online.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Tom on April 11, 2014, 11:37:49 AM
You've got to be careful about where you get your news from though. Some sources aren't the best.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on April 11, 2014, 12:19:30 PM
Nah don't worry Tom, it's only the finest example of upstanding journalism for me, the stalwart Daily Mail.

 :P
BBC news mainly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 11, 2014, 12:21:49 PM
BBC is best news source  :) (Unless you want in-depth news from Somaliland or something like that)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on April 11, 2014, 01:21:37 PM
Yeah, I've stopped watching the news already, just read it online.

I seem to have gone back about 60 years and stick to the radio! But yes, we are getting too much information on the trial, I'm slightly interested to see what the verdict ends up as, but daily updates on the trial? No thanks.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on April 11, 2014, 01:32:46 PM
Is this like an OJ Simpson thing?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on April 11, 2014, 02:20:52 PM
He's a paralympic athlete who shot his girlfriend because he thought she was an intruder. I think he's South African but he's still getting loads of media coverage.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Tom on April 11, 2014, 02:42:34 PM
He didn't even do that well at the paralympics...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on April 11, 2014, 03:05:34 PM
That's old news. :P

Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on April 29, 2014, 10:24:48 PM
http://www.dailydot.com/lifestyle/pornhub-arbor-day/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on May 01, 2014, 06:22:34 PM
Humorous. What exactly is arbor day?

Also, apparently Britain is armadillo http://www.opendemocracy.net/ourkingdom/adam-ramsay/scotland-isnt-different-its-britain-thats-bizarre

I guess I'll go and cry now about how crap my country is.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 01, 2014, 09:42:31 PM
Something about trees, I don't know. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on May 01, 2014, 09:53:46 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-27242557 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-27242557)

Hilarious.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 01, 2014, 09:56:39 PM
At least he got him. We seem to have a thing with shoes, and GWB had Matrix avoidance skills and Hillary's attacker had terrible aim. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on May 01, 2014, 11:56:08 PM
Also, apparently Britain is armadillo http://www.opendemocracy.net/ourkingdom/adam-ramsay/scotland-isnt-different-its-britain-thats-bizarre

Damn commies with their perverted views on how to run a country. Scotland can stay the hell away from us and sell itself to France in a couple of years. People aren't alike, yeah we look alike and have the same basic instincts but that's about it, otherwise why even have countries? Might as well just have the United Earth Directorate and be done with it.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 02, 2014, 12:29:35 AM
I think it's an excessively negative view of modern Britain and an overly rosy view of the continent, which lord knows has enough of its own problems. I hope Scotland sticks with us, I like the place a lot... but that said, I agree with some of the stuff in the article (like taxpayer funded higher education and not having such a bad wealth gap). In many cases I'd advocate a different way of getting there to classical European social democracy though.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on May 02, 2014, 12:27:05 PM
I think it's an excessively negative view of modern Britain and an overly rosy view of the continent, which lord knows has enough of its own problems. I hope Scotland sticks with us, I like the place a lot... but that said, I agree with some of the stuff in the article (like taxpayer funded higher education and not having such a bad wealth gap). In many cases I'd advocate a different way of getting there to classical European social democracy though.

I do wonder whether an independent Scotland could keep up the free higher education. In the past it used to be a clear gap between pre-degree and post-degree salaries, so the extra taxes you paid would effectively 'pay back' your education fees. But now we've got more people than ever going to university and a high amount of graduate unemployment, so I'm not convinced it's a stable position.

I'd be quite surprised if the Scots do vote for independence, there are so many unknowns that mean it's not clear what Scotland would be like post-independence.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Cuddly Khan on May 20, 2014, 08:32:29 AM
[insert 1000 swear words]

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/newspoll-fails-to-deter-tony-abbott-from-pressing-ahead-with-unpopular-budget/story-fn59niix-1226922369013

http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/tony-abbott-brushes-aside-disastrous-polls-saying-people-knew-coalition-would-have-to-make-tough-decisions-20140519-38iu6.html

https://au.news.yahoo.com/world/a/23607132/budget-2014-tony-abbott-says-voters-were-on-notice-for-cuts-before-election-as-state-and-territory-leaders-prepare-to-meet-in-sydney/

GRRRR!!! What does he think he's doing?!?! He'll bringing this country down on top of us!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on May 20, 2014, 10:37:24 AM
I do wonder whether an independent Scotland could keep up the free higher education. In the past it used to be a clear gap between pre-degree and post-degree salaries, so the extra taxes you paid would effectively 'pay back' your education fees. But now we've got more people than ever going to university and a high amount of graduate unemployment, so I'm not convinced it's a stable position.
Well if they were to use our system it wouldn't help them at all, we still don't actually require graduates to pay their debts unless they can afford to and unemployed graduates definitely can't afford to. Keeping higher education free but restricting places (particularly to those degree options with low employability) would be a more practical solution. And I think they have had to do that up here already to some extent.
Edit:
Also how the fudge do the EU elections work?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on May 28, 2014, 07:44:18 PM
This isn't depressing at all: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-27599401 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-27599401)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on May 28, 2014, 08:24:16 PM
What they don't say in this study is what they class as racial prejudice. Some pyschologists suggest that the majority of people have an innate racist response, which may well be 'pre-programmed' or could be a product of soceity. Ultimately though, if it's a subconscious response there's nothing you can do about it except make an effort not to act on it.

If however they mean people will act on their prejudices then it's a heck of a lot more worrying. That being said we're still far better than, say, 50/60 years ago.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 07, 2014, 08:44:33 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-28199066 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-28199066)

Quote
Afghanistan's Ashraf Ghani leads in early vote count

Former Afghan Finance Minister Ashraf Ghani is leading the race to replace Hamid Karzai as president, according to preliminary results.

Mr Ghani won 56.44% of votes in the 14 June run-off, election officials said. His rival Abdullah Abdullah had 43.56%.

Mr Abdullah, who fell just short of an outright majority in the first round, rejected the result.

Both men have alleged fraud in the election. Votes are being re-checked at more than 7,000 polling stations.

They represent nearly a third of centres where votes were cast and correspondents say recounts could significantly alter the result.

Here we have it. Hard to know how much fraud there's been, I just really hope we end up with a result that the Abdullah camp will accept so we get a confirmed, decent resultat the end of this.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 07, 2014, 10:49:40 PM
Allahu akbar!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 07, 2014, 11:23:20 PM
I'm also kind of hoping for a fairly measured approach to that side of it too..
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on July 08, 2014, 12:25:41 PM
I'm also kind of hoping for a fairly measured approach to that side of it too..

It seems to be the only country that currently isn't split along the sunnah/shia divide. Yet.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 08, 2014, 12:40:50 PM
The Sunni-Shia divide isn't an issue in Afghanistan because the split is very much geographic, it's a fault line running through Iraq mainly (in Syria the regime forces are Alawite, which is another thing entirely - but they tend to align with the Shia Iranians or Iraqis versus the Sunnis). Iran is pretty much wholly Shia, Arabia and Afghanistan pretty much wholly Sunni. The Afghan fault lines are if anything ethnic rather than religious, between Pashtuns, Tajiks, Uzbeks, etc etc.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 08, 2014, 01:17:44 PM
I say let them draw their own lines.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 12, 2014, 11:35:40 PM
The trouble is, even the status quo isn't exactly hands off because the US, China, Russia, EU, Saudis, Iranians, etc all pump money in to try and retain or gain influence in the area.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on July 30, 2014, 08:00:29 AM
Large image.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Really?! Does the devil brand his subjects with marks which seem awfully similar to hairdryers?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Cuddly Khan on July 30, 2014, 09:13:16 AM
Probably a stunt by the parents.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 30, 2014, 01:11:09 PM
FEAR THE SATANIC HAIR DRYERS. FEAR THEM WITH GREAT FEAR.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on July 30, 2014, 06:28:10 PM
Just to clarify I was suggesting that the child has been either accidentally or intentionally branded with the end of a hairdryer. Either way, it's not particularly good parenting to then sell the story to The Sun.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 31, 2014, 10:35:12 AM
Y'all need Jesus!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on July 31, 2014, 11:02:32 AM
I'm sure this kid will be very pleased that his parents did this when someone in secondary school stumbles across this piece on the internet...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Cuddly Khan on July 31, 2014, 12:06:42 PM
Someone died today. A tree fell on them. We had 100+km winds plus rain. Australian Winter WTF!!!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gen_Glory on July 31, 2014, 01:36:02 PM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2710377/You-failed-Britain-Pregnant-NHS-boob-job-model-Josie-Cunningham-slammed-Twitter-Q-A-hours-raking-30-000-selling-four-tickets-birth-child.html

on the subject of using children for publicity, the woman who got breast enlargement then reduction on the NHS has sold 4 tickets to her latest childs birth and Leeds city council has cancelled her £6000 taxi allowance (which she had because she refused to take public transport, as the general public did not like her very much)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on August 30, 2014, 01:49:53 PM
So on this weeks broadcast of Any Questions, Osama Saeed of Al Jazeera suggested that the top two people from every school should go to Oxford or Cambridge, in his words to 'really put the cat among the pigeons'.

As far as I see it, this is another cheap attempt to jump on the anti-Oxbridge bandwagon. If we take it seriously I can see two possible results. Either we end up with students at Oxbridge who came from failing schools where their quality of education wasn't up to scratch and so feel out of their depth, depressed and end up failing. From personal experience, those are pretty common feelings among Oxbridge students and to throw someone in who isn't able to cope with the intense program wouldn't be a good idea. Or, we'll have people transferring their children to a failing school and have them tutored in order for them to get an easier place, we already have people transferring to state sixth form colleges from private schools because they mistakenly think that'll help them.

It's also really Oxbridge centered, would it also be fair to say that the top ten from each school should go to a Russel group university? We do have a problem with elitism and inequality in education, but that stems from inequality in schools where the difference is huge and less so at universities where we have many world renowned institutions where your only criteria for entry is showing you have the academic skills necessary.

Does this seem like a fair take on the matter? Or am I just biased being a Cambridge grad from a state school on the verge of being in special measures...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on August 30, 2014, 05:09:38 PM
Osama Saeed's position seems to me to be inconsistent: he effectively accepts that universities should be selective (hence Oxbridge get the most able students) while implying that schools should not be.

In an ideal world, a selective Oxbridge would get the top two (or pro rata for the size of the school) from each school, because all schools would educate their pupils equally well, and innate ability would be the only factor in selection. Unfortunately the UK education system is far from ideal. It therefore makes sense to me that with a selective university system, Oxbridge (and the other Russell group universities) should select the candidates they think will make best use of the education that those universities provide, and at the moment that is going to favour private schools. In my opinion, the effort should be going into improving the state school system, rather than biasing universities' selection procedures.

[My education history may be pertinent:
age 4-11: private school
age 11-18: state schools (i.e. "public" in the non-British sense)
university: Cambridge]
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on August 31, 2014, 05:02:06 AM
He's not even slightly qualified to be telling them what to do. Damn commies trying to make everything mediocre. As usual I'm in favour of letting the people that get things done get on with it. Also, I am pro elitism but, while relevant, is another matter entirely and don't jump on it here because it's a big topic :P

Education history:

I didn't really attend school per se so it would look a little like this.

Sort of (state)
Not really (private)
Nope
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 31, 2014, 10:18:41 PM
I think that to be fair it's not necessarily inconsistent to argue for non-selective schools but selective Universities (though I'm biased there as that's the position I hold myself). Schools operate at a sufficiently lower level that it should be and is usually possible to provide work differentiation through setting/streaming within the school. I think there's a lot of value in mixed schooling if only to remind people of the range of skills and people that exist in the world and that most of them are actually necessary. High-end universities are very much a bubble of future academics, leaders, politicians, etc, and seeing some people there who've been in a similar bubble since their age was in single digits... it doesn't do them any good, put it that way.

Rob: I'm also very pro having an elite Russell Group/Oxbridge, I think that's absolutely the appropriate age for people in all fields of life to start really being able to focus on what will make them brilliant at what they do. On the other hand, I'm quite sympathetic to the view that there are less bright private school pupils who are going to Oxbridge instead of state school pupils, because private schools are better at playing the exams game. And exams can be taught and played as a game - something I know well, from having had to teach myself how to play - without necessarily providing an education that will mean better success at Oxbridge.

That said, I accept that basically we have to use the metrics that are available for state school entry - and one of the main issues with state school entrants is applications as much as/more than results, too many state pupils have the grades but don't apply. I don't think Oxbridge are the main people at fault for their selection biases/issues by any means, and I agree that it's sixth form level where the targeting needs to happen.

Also, since we're doing this:

Primary school  - Local village school, Church of England
Secondary school & Sixth Form - Local Comprehensive in nearest town
Degree - Cambridge
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on September 21, 2014, 10:49:57 PM
Power sharing deal has been agreed in Afghanistan - a big move forwards there.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 03, 2014, 10:36:30 AM
http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/517859/Jeremy-Clarkson-outrage-driving-Argentina-Falklands-War-numberplate

I posted it in chat but I'll post it here as well as it is technically news. Got to say I love the move. Argentina can royally portugal off about the Falklands, Chile once again proving to be our ally, much respect for those guys.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 03, 2014, 11:27:28 AM
I agree that Argentina should leave off, it's a pity that their politicians always see it as a way of getting free support. I'm still not a Clarkson fan and probably never will be.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 03, 2014, 12:48:13 PM
So 269 = 255 and 646 = 649? This is going to change the math world forever. :o
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 03, 2014, 01:01:30 PM
Lol, I know right, getting all aggro over not much really. Nobody gave two armadillos when they pulled their stunts with the athlete or at the football.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Tom on October 03, 2014, 02:20:29 PM
I can't understand how much they can misconstrue the numbers.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 04, 2014, 12:47:44 AM
Have just a taste of what it's like to be an American. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 04, 2014, 07:21:44 AM
I think we're about as hated worldwide as you guys, although we seem to have self loathing and public shame which you guys lack :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 04, 2014, 12:45:47 PM
I like our self deprecation. It's in many ways not a bad characteristic.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on October 04, 2014, 01:58:45 PM
So 269 = 255 and 646 = 649? This is going to change the math world forever. :o
I must have missed something, or maybe I'm just not looking in the right place. What was the news story behind this?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 04, 2014, 01:59:47 PM
So 269 = 255 and 646 = 649? This is going to change the math world forever. :o
I must have missed something, or maybe I'm just not looking in the right place. What was the news story behind this?
http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/517859/Jeremy-Clarkson-outrage-driving-Argentina-Falklands-War-numberplate

Also,
(http://cdn.rsvlts.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/america.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on October 04, 2014, 02:22:33 PM
http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/517859/Jeremy-Clarkson-outrage-driving-Argentina-Falklands-War-numberplate
Many thanks. I'd spotted the Clarkson story, but I didn't know someone had tried to tie up the other two number plates to the Falklands War as well.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 04, 2014, 04:20:21 PM
I like our self deprecation. It's in many ways not a bad characteristic.

Don't get me wrong, I love it. For me it symbolises that we actually have a pretty decent idea of how generally flawed the human race is and that we are equally flawed as anyone else :D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on October 05, 2014, 10:00:36 AM
So Clarkson was being potentially offensive about a very sensitive issue and was surprised at the result? You'd have thought they'd have learnt from their trip to America where they nearly got portugaled up by a gang of mega christian hillbilly nutjobs.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on October 05, 2014, 10:46:01 AM
To be fair I don't think they were being insensitive here, I think it was just Argentina doing their thing again - like with the Olympics. I mean come on, they're complaining about a number plate being reasonably close to a number associated with a war 30 years ago when they sneaked in and filmed an advert there trying to lay claim to the islands which want to be British anyway. Honestly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gen_Glory on October 05, 2014, 11:45:29 AM
It's the argentine government's way of diverting attention away from home issues (it also worked pretty well for Thatcher)

Didn't they default (again) fairly recently?

So to stop the people worrying about the abysmal economic situation they start the falklands issue all over again
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on October 05, 2014, 03:45:36 PM
Well it wasn't the Argentinian government that kicked up the heehaw, twas a mob of bellends who thought they were being antagonised. Escorting them out of Argentina was actually a pretty sensible response by the authorities. Considering Clarkson's record it really wouldn't have been surprising if he had pulled something like that on purpose.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 05, 2014, 05:39:05 PM
The bellends are only bellends about this issue because of people in their government telling them that Falklands is theirs with bs propaganda. So I blame both. The authorities also stopped protecting Clarkson and he made his way to Chile instead. Which is but one reason why Chile is awesome.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gen_Glory on October 05, 2014, 09:09:45 PM
Wasn't it the local council that organised the protest against top gear?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on October 07, 2014, 06:34:45 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-29512763

I'm scared now...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 07, 2014, 06:40:52 PM
Meh. We portray our presidents riding dinosaurs.

(http://www.neatorama.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/ronald_reagan_riding_a_velociraptor_1920-640x426-500x332.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 18, 2014, 12:28:09 PM
http://reason.com/blog/2014/10/16/socialists-push-for-20-minimum-wage-but
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 18, 2014, 01:26:45 PM
portugaling socialist bastards. I shouldn't let them annoy me, they're doomed to fail anyway but they're just so wrong and hypocritical it hurts.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on October 24, 2014, 06:15:00 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-29754168
Good news for EU sceptics I guess. Seems a bit mental.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 24, 2014, 07:18:56 PM
Seems reasonable to not pay 2bn euros.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 24, 2014, 07:40:28 PM
A lot of this is a Cameron screwup though. He changed the number system to make it look like the economy was doing a bunch better, then as a result of that it turned out we'd been underpaying the EU - this is, to clarify, a regular readjustment, it's just that because of our figures changing we've turned out to have like a decade's backlog. Also the treasury have known this was coming up for ages and now they're acting like it's some travesty - this readjustment happens every year, it's just that most years we've been given a rebate from it so everyone's ignored it.

Of course 2 billion is a lot of money, and the EU would have been smarter to smooth over it by making the payments an incremental upward adjustment of future payments not a lump sum. But this is at heart a politically manufactured crisis.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 05, 2014, 02:08:53 PM
And suddenly, Republicans everywhere.

Say goodbye to any legislation whatsoever being passed for the next two years, America! Oh, and good luck even getting budgets passed, which now may not even happen.  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 05, 2014, 02:16:28 PM
Well I didn't vote for them. :P

I hope you're not implying that Democrats would have been any better.

#libertarian
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on November 05, 2014, 02:44:09 PM
And suddenly, Republicans everywhere.

Say goodbye to any legislation whatsoever being passed for the next two years, America! Oh, and good luck even getting budgets passed, which now may not even happen.  :P

I may be mistaken, but as far as I understand it, the president has a veto, but congress can table and pass legislation since it's now completely red. If I remember rightly the budget didn't pass because the House blocked it.

Correct me if I'm wrong, I can't say I know a huge amount about the situation.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on November 05, 2014, 07:33:47 PM
TTG4: I think you're right. Based on the BBC reports at least, the Republicans now have a majority in both the House and the Senate. Their Senate majority is not big enough to prevent filibustering, but I think they now have a fairly free hand at legislating. The question now is whether and how much Obama will use the presidential veto.

I suppose there is a separate question of whether the Tea Party will allow Congress to spend any money on anything...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 06, 2014, 11:48:21 PM
I'm surprised the Libertarians haven't been able to capitalise on this at all - presumably just a matter of weak organisation and lack of funds, but you'd have thought they'd be at least pushing in more at a state representation level even if not in congress.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 07, 2014, 12:11:19 AM
They try for too much at once. It's got to be subtle and from the bottom.

I also read that a Libertarian candidate died before the election. Believe he was murdered by Republicrats.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 07, 2014, 12:25:11 AM
They try for too much at once. It's got to be subtle and from the bottom.
I think this is the core of the matter - they need to be pushing to get a few seats in state legislatures in Libertarian-leaning states (Colorado, Maine, possibly New Mexico Nebraska). They can then use that local government base as a springboard to get seats in Congress, if they can become popular by have ground gains. Instead they seem to be blowing their funds on the presidency or the senate which are much more distant goals, it's all about building up the ground game. That's what worked for the Liberals in the UK, though they've screwed things up since getting into coalition.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on November 09, 2014, 10:06:56 PM
Today is the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. To my regret, now, I wasn't paying much attention to the news at the time - there were other, more immediate, things going on in my life. Nevertheless, the pictures are remarkable: the destruction of a physical barrier, and perhaps more importantly of a mental barrier, that had divided Europe for at least a generation.

Only two months before, I had been travelling around Europe by train, with friends. Going from Vienna to Copenhagen, it didn't cross our minds that the shortest route was via Prague and Berlin - these were both the other side of the Iron Curtain. Instead we went the long (and admittedly rather scenic) way round, via Salzburg, Munich and Cologne. Now, I've probably travelled almost as widely east of that frontier as west of it.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 09, 2014, 11:12:17 PM
I also feel it's a pity I wasn't paying much attention to the news at the time, but I at least have the excuse of nonexistence...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 10, 2014, 02:02:11 AM
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 18, 2014, 02:49:45 PM
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/nov/18/neo-nazis-tricked-into-raising-10000-for-charity

Nazis tricked into being sponsored for a walkathon. This amuses me :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 18, 2014, 03:54:05 PM
I wouldn't be surprised if this backfires into explosive violence.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 18, 2014, 04:10:44 PM
Nazis in Germany are now too rare and frowned upon to be able to risk explosive violence, to be honest.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 18, 2014, 04:15:32 PM
They are here too but then Timothy Mcveigh.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on November 18, 2014, 06:47:13 PM
Here in the UK they usually band together and form political parties.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on November 20, 2014, 01:45:25 PM
On another topic, Sweden have upheld their arrest warrant for Assange.

The way I see it, if he's innocent then why doesn't he defend himself against the allegations? I highly doubt they're fabricated as I see some people suggesting. By hiding from the law I feel like he increases suspicion.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: joek on November 20, 2014, 02:17:02 PM
Quote
On another topic, Sweden have upheld their arrest warrant for Assange.

The way I see it, if he's innocent then why doesn't he defend himself against the allegations?

His reasoning behind staying in the UK rather than going to Sweden to face charges initially was bloody stupid. He claimed to believe that he was safer from extradition to the US staying in a country with a formal extradition treaty, which is ridiculously one sided, with the US, and has a history of helping the CIA with extraordinary renditions, than he was in a country which had given him a formal promise that he wouldn't be extradited, and didn't have an extradition treaty with the US in the first place.

Either he genuinely believed this, in which case he's so stupid that he's actively harmful and I don't want to be associated with him, or he didn't believe this, and he's a lying scumbag who knows that he's likely to be convicted of rape in Sweden, and I don't want to be associated with him.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 21, 2014, 03:08:33 PM
I split off the ongoing discussion into a new thread.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: joek on November 21, 2014, 04:10:59 PM
Also in the news (http://www.theguardian.com/media/2014/nov/19/bbc-knickers-on-nick-conrad-rapist-ched-evans) at the moment.

portugaling hell.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 22, 2014, 04:00:18 PM
http://www.nraila.org/news-issues/articles/2014/11/school-suspends-fifth-grader-armed-with-finger-childlike-imagination.aspx

Glad I grew up in the 90's.  ::)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on December 05, 2014, 01:31:55 PM
Some happier news (in my opinion, anyway): the High Court has overturned a government ban on the sending of books to prisoners in England and Wales - the BBC News article (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-30344867) has more details.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 05, 2014, 01:47:40 PM
(http://www.moviequotesandmore.com/image-files/shawshank-redemption-quotes-13.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 05, 2014, 02:09:15 PM
Yay for that :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on December 13, 2014, 02:48:58 PM
So Russian Tolkien fans were planning will no longer be raising the eye of sauron over Moscow to celebrate the new hobbit film because of objections by the orthodox church. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/dec/10/russia-scraps-eye-of-sauron-art-installation

“Such a symbol of the triumph of evil is rising up over the city, becoming practically the highest object in the city. Is that good or bad? I’m afraid it’s more likely bad. Just don’t be surprised later if something goes wrong with the city.”

I reckon they were just worried a dragon would rock up and swipe all their gold.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on December 14, 2014, 09:58:02 AM
Well has Glaurung been to Russia yet?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on December 14, 2014, 11:29:03 AM
Well has Glaurung been to Russia yet?
No, the closest I've got is the border station in Lithuania. Besides, I thought Putin had got all their gold already.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on December 17, 2014, 02:30:58 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-30507836

So this happened. I'm tired of saying the same thing over and over.

Also this
LAPD are getting chest cams to prevent violence. Good job but took yer time LA.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 17, 2014, 02:47:09 PM
Somehow the US will be to blame for those poor child's deaths.

Also, "oops my camera stopped working, guess you can't prosecute me".
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 17, 2014, 02:52:45 PM
Interesting that the Afghan Taliban have condemned the Pakistani Taliban's attack - if not even all the Taliban agree on your attack, it possibly shows new lows have been reached...

I'm in favour of body cameras, though CG's point is dead right - there's one cop in Utah or somewhere who's killed like four people, all of them whilst his camera "malfunctioned". Which is dodgy as hell. But yes, in general I think if you're going to have a country where both citizens and police have firearms, it's damn important to ensure that incidents are recorded.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 17, 2014, 03:26:09 PM
It's like Russians and their dash-cams.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on December 22, 2014, 03:21:42 PM
Another piece of good news (in my opinion): a court in Buenos Aires has decided that an orangutan, though not human, is sentient enough to be entitled to certain basic rights. More in a BBC News article (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-30571577).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 22, 2014, 04:10:11 PM
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on December 23, 2014, 03:17:57 PM
Another piece of good news (in my opinion): a court in Buenos Aires has decided that an orangutan, though not human, is sentient enough to be entitled to certain basic rights. More in a BBC News article (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-30571577).

They say that it paves the way for other sentient creatures to be freed. The main issue that I see here is that people tend to empathise more with mammals than with other groups of animals, so how are we going to define what is sentient and what isn't?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 23, 2014, 09:32:57 PM
I'm nervous about trying to define "non-sentient personhood" - I'm happy to have variations of animal rights, and I probably agree that the concept of "owning" a Great Ape is a bit wrong, but on the other hand I'm imagining the legal mess if every scientific lab with monkeys in it was faced with attempts to push through Habeas Corpus writs. Good for the orang in question, but I'm not sure legally I think this was the right formulation to solve the problem.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 23, 2014, 10:42:13 PM
Indeed.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on December 24, 2014, 03:26:59 PM
Isn't it non-human personhood? I thought that the sentient bit was what was making the case? Or I've misunderstood. Both are equally likely. I'm happy for the monkey. Go monkeys!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 24, 2014, 04:04:46 PM
In Star Trek they argue Data is alive because he meets only three criteria: intelligence, self-awareness, and consciousness.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on December 24, 2014, 05:11:29 PM
I'm imagining the legal mess if every scientific lab with monkeys in it was faced with attempts to push through Habeas Corpus writs.

I'm quite confident something like this will happen. The extreme animal rights groups are still quite strong, around 3 times a year they'd mount a noisy protest outside the some of the faculties back at uni. They never cared about plant sciences using bees or aphids in their work, but of course the cute fluffy mice and rats they cared deeply about.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 25, 2014, 01:33:30 PM
So how convenient: Sony is now renting out The Interview for $5.99 a pop even though they apparently pulled it from theaters due to NK threats. Definitely a publicity stunt.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 25, 2014, 01:46:38 PM
Totally called it.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 11, 2015, 02:29:02 PM
http://www.economist.com/news/europe/21638195-france-and-other-european-countries-have-long-been-braced-commando-style-terror-attack

Obviously read about it days ago but hey. It's almost like there are more and more attacks each year.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 11, 2015, 02:41:02 PM
Do you actually have a source for that? Because at least in Western Europe, I'm not sure that's statistically correct - citation needed!

I just worry that the response to this is going to be that people will berate Muslims more and more for attacks that in most cases they could've done nothing about, making those communities more marginalised, and fuelling more terrorism, which will mean the far right gains more ground, in a vicious and violent circle. The Charlie Hebdo massacre was disgusting, and one of the most horrifying attacks we've seen in quite a number of years. But if our response to that in the West is to further erode our human rights laws, weaken things like habeas corpus, introduce yet more surveillance powers - that, I think, is when the irreverent, free speaking, and egregiously offensive Charlie Hebdo has lost and their killers have won. And that's something I'm really quite scared of at the moment.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on January 11, 2015, 06:24:21 PM
http://www.vox.com/2015/1/10/7524731/french-muslims-attacks-charlie-hebdo

Speaking of a backlash...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 11, 2015, 06:46:16 PM
Or retribution...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 11, 2015, 07:38:47 PM
Its hardly retribution if its conducted against people who have had no part in terror activities.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 11, 2015, 09:11:12 PM
Whoever is doing this is only doing the same to them as they do to us. From that angle, yeah you can have retribution. Doesn't need to be on the exact people, there's collective guilt/debt etc not just personal. I wasn't advocating it btw, just saying I don't think they'd see it as backlash and more as justified retribution.

Source for what specifically Jub? There were a few statistics in there.

Also, if we're alive still then their killers don't win, if we're under surveillance and police statery then it makes it easier to stay alive. I'll add in that with obvious drawbacks and breaches of this that and the other, so it's more like Charlie loses, killers lose, and we lose.

EDIT: I'm hoping France bans Islam and possibly all public worship. To make that clear, being a 'x religionist' is still legal just do it in your own home.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Son of the King on January 11, 2015, 09:46:33 PM
Doesn't need to be on the exact people, there's collective guilt/debt etc not just personal.

So they are just as bad as the terrorists? You cannot blame an entire group for the actions of a minority. Some football fans are violent - this doesn't mean that everyone who enjoys football is automatically a hooligan, or even that everyone is responsible for the idiotic behaviour of a minority. The recent events were the result of a small number of people plotting to spread fear and hatred, most of whom are now dead. What collective debt do other people who happen to be of the same faith as them owe?

EDIT: I'm hoping France bans Islam and possibly all public worship. To make that clear, being a 'x religionist' is still legal just do it in your own home.

What good would that do?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 11, 2015, 11:00:47 PM
Erm... No, quite clearly they're not as bad, they're defending their home/country/friends. Just doing it wrong but with the right intentions. Also 'If there are this many bad apples the orchard is full of armadillo' paraphrasing someone or other, but yeah I do think there is something wrong within Islamic community whether its the faith or the people I don't know. I'm not blaming them for it, I'm saying its systemic.

Banning public worship lessens the time these people spend with each other in such large groups.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 11, 2015, 11:46:13 PM
The idea of collective guilt for crimes, and the idea that the Muslim community is a monolith, are both clearly horsedung. How the hell do you expect the muslims I know here in Cambridge, or indeed people like the muslim cop who was shot dead by the terrorists, to have an influence on radical extremist cells that are just as alien to their lives as to yours? By what medium do you envisage that happening?

Also, I call further horsedung on the idea that we win by mere survival. I'd rather live in a society where I have a higher chance of death from terrorism (which would still be infinitesimal of course) but can communicate with others without someone logging all my communication. The reason I oppose, hate, and detest radical hyper-extreme Islam is the same reason I oppose, hate and detest hard right politics, both are about reducing people's freedom and agency and both are feeding off one another right now.

Also re stats: you said it was "almost like there are more attacks each year" - and I'm not sure there are, or that I do feel like that, so I'd be interested to see the stats.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 12, 2015, 11:04:09 AM
I'm not blaming them for it, I'm saying its systemic.
Yes, you are. Stop trying to pretend your views here are based on anything other than bigotry and cowardice, its utterly pathetic.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 12, 2015, 11:26:24 AM
@Jub Collective guilt/debt I'm on the fence about, though I think that stems from my strong familial ties (If one of my family members portugals up, I'm usually the one paying for it/sorting it out, which I'm A-Ok with btw as long as they learn some sort of lesson from it).
Quote
it's more like Charlie loses, killers lose, and we lose.
I did not say we win, in fact I said we lose but also they lose as well. I was arguing against you saying that they win if we're simply under excessive govt surveillance.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_terrorist_incidents_in_Great_Britain#2010-present

This blatantly shows Islamic attacks successful, failed and thwarted from 2010 onward have exploded (pun intended) despite that us non-believers have been the enemy of Islam since Islam existed.

@penty: Glad you know exactly where my thoughts come from, for a moment there I was thinking only I had access to that knowledge! Do you know what the word bigot means? It's a person that it intolerant towards a different view. This would include yourself. The word is near meaningless when we're talking about views that naturally oppose, as each is likely bigoted towards the other. I get my views from the same place you do, what I believe is right. As much as you do I have a right to believe whatever the portugal I want. Cowardice? Unlike you however I live in a place where the issues we talk about here are actually in effect. There is Muslim violence, there is anti-muslim violence. Have you ever seen someone get stabbed literally feet away from you? Have you been to a place where being white is such a detriment that you're only one of about twenty out of two hundred? I'm thinking no. I portugaling love Northants it suits me perfectly, I love the grime but damn it can get get rough.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 12, 2015, 01:19:52 PM
One of your family, maybe, but your co-religionists? If I stabbed a Christian because I thought their faith was wrong, should you be apologising for it and making amends? That is literally the question you are posing here.

The wiki shows nothing of the sort. This is a handy table of UK Islamic terrorism, constructed from the Wiki article you listed. Please observe that every number in the 10-14 category is lower than every equivalent number in the category above.

YearsSuccessful attacksKnown prevented attacksDeath toll
2000-04010
2005-093556
2010-14121

Obviously the rate is still higher than it was before Islamic terrorism became a major thing in the first place - it's a recent phenomenon - but there hasn't been any sort of noticeable continued upsurge, at least in the UK.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 12, 2015, 04:07:32 PM
@penty: Glad you know exactly where my thoughts come from, for a moment there I was thinking only I had access to that knowledge! Do you know what the word bigot means? It's a person that it intolerant towards a different view. This would include yourself. The word is near meaningless when we're talking about views that naturally oppose, as each is likely bigoted towards the other. I get my views from the same place you do, what I believe is right. As much as you do I have a right to believe whatever the portugal I want. Cowardice? Unlike you however I live in a place where the issues we talk about here are actually in effect. There is Muslim violence, there is anti-muslim violence. Have you ever seen someone get stabbed literally feet away from you? Have you been to a place where being white is such a detriment that you're only one of about twenty out of two hundred? I'm thinking no. I portugaling love Northants it suits me perfectly, I love the grime but damn it can get get rough.
Yeah I know what bigot means, I'd say it doesn't apply to me as I'm not intolerant of other views. I find yours to be abhorrent but I wouldn't try to force you to change them. I don't argue against your views out of spite or any desire to be right, I do it because I very firmly believe that hatred does not lead to happiness, and therefore your life would be improved by letting go of it.
As to cowardice, I wasn't actually claiming to be better than you on that front, no I don't often have to deal with fear in the face of my beliefs but I wouldn't want to live with myself if I couldn't take pride in who I am, and I honestly wouldn't be able to do that if I let fear erode my values.
As to why I find your views cowardly its because you claim to place value on the lives of innocent muslims whilst still advocating the use of indiscriminate force against large muslim populations due to your own fear. Am I wrong about this?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 12, 2015, 06:05:38 PM
That's in no way the question I'm posing here for one. If you stabbed a Christian because you thought their faith was wrong then a Christian might get it into his/her head that stabbing an atheist is just retribution. So I take it you're also against giving reparations to blacks for injury and insult suffered by their forefathers at the hands of whitey ancestors? Sometimes (opinion, for some reason this seems to need to be made clear) collectives do need to pay (money, not evil villain style pay) for wrongs that they personally didn't commit. I didn't personally make anyone homeless but I pay taxes which house them and give them food credits which I'm also (relatively) happy to do.

Also just as a general point that everyone seems to be ignoring: Nowhere here by the by have I said that I support any of the attacks. I'm giving a reason for people to think the way these people are. Stop with your demonising, actually read what I'm saying before casting your judgments.

Basically you hit the nail on the head Jub, Islamic terrorism here has increased (from 0) since Islamist terror began. It's an obvious point but one that I hope isn't lost, they've expanded their targets to us, which means that as long as there are members of these organisations still alive then we have someone who considers us enemy. It's off topic but there are tons of places where you can get info on Islamic terrorism globally, and it's huge, and growing.  Here in the UK we're doing roughly the same the statistics are so small that they're nearly irrelevant. Yeah there have been more attacks 2005-2009 than 2010-2014 buuuuut the difference is tiny. Its pretty irrelevant. Taking the world as a whole is relevant, and perhaps a comparison of the UK with other countries but this is sort of a global issue, not just limited to what happens here.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_terrorist_incidents#1970.E2.80.93present Here is a link to global terrorism. Boko Haram, Taliban, al-Quaeda, al-Nusra, ISIL come up time and again. In comparison there is very little non-Islamic terrorism. Granted this is at least partially because the west chooses who is the terrorist and who is the freedom fighter but I digress. I've not been through all of it by any means.

@Penty: I'm also not intolerant of other views, I fully accept that people can believe in a cause so thoroughly that they're prepared to die for it, I know that people seek vengeance on others for no reason than they read about something that happened. I do hate Muslims this is true, surely the cowardly thing would be to deny it? Say: Oh no I only hate the evil ones, it's not true for me. I'm not patronising you by pretending otherwise. I also try as best I can to look at it from multiple angles, each of which are obviously tainted by my biases but believe it or not, I do try. Yes you're wrong, I don't value 'innocent' Muslim lives as much as other peoples (Innocent is also a weird word to use. If you mean innocent of causing violence, well I'm innocent but then my views are far from it, see what I mean. Because one can't know the thoughts of another it's impossible to tell who is innocent and who is not) and in this thread I'm not advocating anything. Another thing is that we have very different values and I'd also hate to lose mine, I've done that once already but that's a completely separate thing which I don't want to get into particularly. You're mixing things I've said in different threads. Which is bad because I'm the devils advocate, if I wasn't here there would be no sides it'd be a circle jerk of self congratulation on how morally superior you all obviously are.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Son of the King on January 12, 2015, 06:27:56 PM
That's in no way the question I'm posing here for one. If you stabbed a Christian because you thought their faith was wrong then a Christian might get it into his/her head that stabbing an atheist is just retribution.

They would be wrong. Stabbing the atheist in question would be retribution.

Sometimes (opinion, for some reason this seems to need to be made clear) collectives do need to pay (money, not evil villain style pay) for wrongs that they personally didn't commit. I didn't personally make anyone homeless but I pay taxes which house them and give them food credits which I'm also (relatively) happy to do.

So make ISIS pay, make al-Qaeda pay, make the Taliban pay, but don't make ordinary people pay. Terrorist attacks are supported or carried out by terrorist groups on the whole, not by an entire religion. Homeless people are part of society, so it is right that society should pay taxes to house them.

Basically you hit the nail on the head Jub, Islamic terrorism here has increased (from 0) since Islamist terror began.

Non-Islamic terrorism has also increased since non-Islamic terrorism began. Everything that begins increases since it didn't exist, by definition.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_terrorist_incidents#1970.E2.80.93present Here is a link to global terrorism. Boko Haram, Taliban, al-Quaeda, al-Nusra, ISIL come up time and again. In comparison there is very little non-Islamic terrorism. Granted this is at least partially because the west chooses who is the terrorist and who is the freedom fighter but I digress. I've not been through all of it by any means.

Indeed it is. It is also probably because these militant groups are primarily based in more unstable and/or less well-off parts of the world, which also happen to be places where Islam is a dominant faith (note that there are also plenty of places with many Muslims which are not unstable or poor).

I do hate Muslims this is true

If someone close to you converted to Islam, would you then hate them?

Also, what should happen to the (presumably Muslim) family of the Muslim police officer? Are they collectively responsible for that murder just because they are of the same faith as his killers? Is he responsible for his own death, because his killers shared his faith?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 12, 2015, 07:08:19 PM
Why does everyone ignore what I'm saying.

Quote
a Christian might get it into his/her head that stabbing an atheist is just retribution.

Quote
I'm giving a reason for people to think the way these people are.

Quote
they're defending their home/country/friends. Just doing it wrong but with the right intentions.

I'm not talking about myself. I've condemned the retaliation attacks.

Quote
They would be wrong. Stabbing the atheist in question would be retribution.

Not arguing that. Yes they would be wrong. See above quote from earlier.

Quote
So make ISIS pay, make al-Qaeda pay, make the Taliban pay, but don't make ordinary people pay. Terrorist attacks are supported or carried out by terrorist groups on the whole

Again, yes this is the right thing to do. What we're (or maybe it's just me) looking at is what the reason is that people do the wrong thing even though they think its right at the time.

Quote
Non-Islamic terrorism has also increased since non-Islamic terrorism began. Everything that begins increases since it didn't exist, by definition.

Yes, but that's even more general that what I'm saying. The point I made was that we're being targeted.

Quote
Indeed it is. It is also probably because these militant groups are primarily based in more unstable and/or less well-off parts of the world, which also happen to be places where Islam is a dominant faith (note that there are also plenty of places with many Muslims which are not unstable or poor).

So being poor is the excuse for being a terrorist? Sorry I don't buy that. There are plenty of catholic parts of Africa which are equally if not more impoverished who aren't terrorising.

Quote
If someone close to you converted to Islam, would you then hate them?

Also, what should happen to the (presumably Muslim) family of the Muslim police officer? Are they collectively responsible for that murder just because they are of the same faith as his killers? Is he responsible for his own death, because his killers shared his faith?

Yep, probably.

Again see above. I, myself, me, Rob, do not hold anyone to blame but the people that caused the violence and, sort of in a certain way but can't be arsed to detail it here, faith itself for it. I don't think every other Muslim is to blame. This wasn't even about what I think at all until people decided to make it about what I think.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 12, 2015, 10:21:28 PM
Stop with your demonising, actually read what I'm saying before casting your judgments.
Perhaps you should stop repeatedly posting inflammatory things about Muslims without clear enough explanation so you don't then have to backtrack later on. Because frankly I find it very hard to believe you.

@Penty: I'm also not intolerant of other views, I fully accept that people can believe in a cause so thoroughly that they're prepared to die for it, I know that people seek vengeance on others for no reason than they read about something that happened. I do hate Muslims this is true, surely the cowardly thing would be to deny it? Say: Oh no I only hate the evil ones, it's not true for me. I'm not patronising you by pretending otherwise. I also try as best I can to look at it from multiple angles, each of which are obviously tainted by my biases but believe it or not, I do try. Yes you're wrong, I don't value 'innocent' Muslim lives as much as other peoples (Innocent is also a weird word to use. If you mean innocent of causing violence, well I'm innocent but then my views are far from it, see what I mean. Because one can't know the thoughts of another it's impossible to tell who is innocent and who is not) and in this thread I'm not advocating anything. Another thing is that we have very different values and I'd also hate to lose mine, I've done that once already but that's a completely separate thing which I don't want to get into particularly. You're mixing things I've said in different threads. Which is bad because I'm the devils advocate, if I wasn't here there would be no sides it'd be a circle jerk of self congratulation on how morally superior you all obviously are.
How are you not intolerant? You hate a group of people for identifying themselves with a specific but very broad religion (not even a specific set of values) and want France (and other western countries?) to ban all forms of public prayer. That sounds very much like intolerance to me without even mentioning the other views you've espoused about Islam in other threads.
So why do you not place much value on the life of an innocent Muslim? (for simplicity lets say innocence of advocating hatred/violence.)
And why do you hold on to your hate of Muslims? Do you actually think it betters your life? I've never seen hatred cause anything but misery and if you're knowingly letting fear get in the way of your own happiness then yeah I'd certainly class that as cowardice.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 13, 2015, 08:31:02 AM
Right so just stop holding views is what your saying. And I haven't backtracked. I've literally just quoted what I said earlier which you've refused to acknowledge clearly states that I've not been talking about myself until it was forced on me.

I'm not intolerant in the same way you aren't, anyone can have their own views. Yeah I hate a group but I'm not saying they don't have a right to exist. I'm hoping France bans all form of public worship because it'd be interesting to see if that helps or hinders. They've already banned faith schools and religious dress, I don't think its unimaginable for them to go this extra step. Why do I not place as much value on innocent Muslim life: because they're the most likely demographic to be terrorist dickbags. Even if they don't advocate, they can still be in favour of it, just not say anything. I've been to rallys in Leicester. I've seen how they treat their women, even at damn college. I've seen the gangs of them and I've seen the worst that humanity has to offer within that demographic. Do I think my hatred betters my life? I think it means I know where I stand, so no, but it doesn't worsen it. Does it cause me misery, no, not at all because I do believe that its justified. My happiness/misery is not defined by my politics at all. In fact I keep politics all to one side completely when dealing with people irl because obviously I know that I hold rather extreme views.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 13, 2015, 01:32:05 PM
No I'm not saying you should stop holding views, to be specific I was suggesting that if you post something that could quite easily be interpreted as advocating violence against Muslims then you might want to make it clear in that same post that you aren't doing that. Since you hold extreme views on Muslims its very easy to misinterpret your point.
So you decide to hate Muslims for the sake of simplicity yet still try to be avoid bias when forming views about the treatment of Muslims/Islam? That seems very counterproductive to me, surely it would be easier to approach the subject with an open mind in the first place. Do you also not worry that your hatred prevents you from befriending potentially awesome people? I've known some Muslims to be very good people, I've also known some to be complete alpacas. But then I could say the same for any demographic, even if it is true that someone from this group is more likely to be unpleasant doesn't mean its not worth treating them without prejudice. I find that if you approach anyone with goodwill they usually respond in kind.
I could have chosen to judge, dislike and avoid you for a lot of the views in this area for the sake of simplicity, instead this argument has come about and I'm pretty sure at the end of it (because god I hope we're approaching the end of it) I'll still like and respect you.

In fact I keep politics all to one side completely when dealing with people irl because obviously I know that I hold rather extreme views.
Is this because you're ashamed of your views, fearful of people's reactions or just that you want to avoid a great deal of fairly pointless argument? If its the latter (and I'm guessing it is) then I apologise for accusing you of cowardice. And I unreservedly apologise for not elaborating on why I was making a fairly personal attack in the first instance.

As to the effect banning public prayer would have, I suspect it would have a very negative one, both on Muslim and other religious populations. Although I dislike the vast majority of religions I'm well aware that many people find comfort and happiness from organised religion, for many people its their main source of quality social interaction as well. I'm pretty confident that banning public prayer groups would lead to an increase in depression among such people and likely cause or exacerbate other mental illnesses, which is likely to increase extreme and potentially violent behaviour in all groups afflicted. And when applied specifically to Islam its going to mean more Muslims turning towards the internet for their theological fix, which is a lot harder to keep tabs on (pun intended) than public prayer groups.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 13, 2015, 02:10:59 PM
Very good, thanks Penty. This is a new-ish thing for me, I guess it was only a year ago perhaps I was actually very much open to all of what you're saying, treating others without preconceptions. I have known awesome Muslims as it happens as well. Guy called Muzahir, Muz for short was one of the funniest people I've known and I do find it a bit of a shame that my views have been so changed due to all the bs I've seen but I can't get over that it's this one demographic that's time and time again causing so much trouble.

Quote
Is this because you're ashamed of your views, fearful of people's reactions or just that you want to avoid a great deal of fairly pointless argument?

Sort of, I (you'll laugh at this) don't want to offend people, not afraid to but I'd rather not have a confrontation. I don't mind it over the internet because it's so much less personal. Thanks though.

On the banning, I don't know. I know it could have a hugely negative one for the reasons you said and others, but on the other hand it could also erode hardline views. It would be an interesting social experiment regardless :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on January 13, 2015, 10:40:43 PM
Onto another topic

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-30794256

I'm so glad this has happened, it was a portugaling stupid idea to place a blanket ban in the first place. But now we can utilise our new knowledge and skills to improve the agricultural system. In my view, anything that reduces the need for increased pesticide, herbicide, fertiliser etc. usage can only be a good thing.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on January 14, 2015, 07:35:19 AM
Re: the Charlie Hebdo attacks, the entire point of attacks like this is to elicit the exact kind of thinking that Colossus is showing, in hating Muslims for the actions of a few you help the cause of the extremists. The point isn't to kill people but to convert moderates to their side, by having the people under attack use the moderates as scapegoats and oppress them, just how Colossus advocated for France to do. The only way to fight this is or tolerance, not prejudice.

As for GM crops, yes a full ban was stupid. The planet is getting more and more populated leaving less arable land, so anything that increases yields is obviously a benefit.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on January 15, 2015, 12:33:29 AM
Following on from the EU vote on GM crops, I missed one key point. A country can decide to plant a GM crop as long as they clear safety tests, but they can also ban these crops for NON-scientific reasons.

From my point of view, this is a bad idea, crop yield is probably going to fall in the next few decades, especially if we continue banning pesticides/fertilisers on the weight of very little evidence, such as the current issues with the loss of oilseed rape to flea beetle because neonicotinoids have been banned for two years based on fairly slim evidence of effects on bees.

So we need to look at alternatives, and GM is a very promising one of these.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 15, 2015, 10:04:33 AM
Quote
Although Euro MPs and ministers have agreed to give states more flexibility, EU scientists will still play a key role in authorisations.

Quote
But the UK Conservative group in Strasbourg has criticised the new law, saying it "allows member states to proceed directly to national bans, rather than first seeking a more legally sound 'opt-out

So does this mean that Governments will have EU approved power to allow things and complete access on banning things? If so that's stupid and pseudo-hypocritical. Let bias be known: anti-EU, even if its irrelevant here.

@TTG4 Is GM still too new to have blanket use among countries with the tech to do it or are there (non-moral, I don't even get the morals against it anyway but ehh whatever) future implications such as, erm I don't know, weakening the crop through excessive engineering? Or would it be a good idea to modify everything to increase size, nutritional value, insect-proof-ness etc?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on January 15, 2015, 09:54:46 PM
So does this mean that Governments will have EU approved power to allow things and complete access on banning things?

I believe so, I understand that things need to go through safety screening, but I don't think the politicians should be able to tell the farmers not to use a thing if it's been shown to be safe enough for use.

@TTG4 Is GM still too new to have blanket use among countries with the tech to do it or are there (non-moral, I don't even get the morals against it anyway but ehh whatever) future implications such as, erm I don't know, weakening the crop through excessive engineering? Or would it be a good idea to modify everything to increase size, nutritional value, insect-proof-ness etc?

To just use GM and not use any conventional breeding just isn't feasible. Something like herbicide resistance or even resistance to disease is fairly easy to do as compared to just trying to increase yield, because the genetics of yield are portugaling complicated! As with most new things it's not a panacea, but I think that used sensibly it's a good idea.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 16, 2015, 07:18:48 PM
Hell, the math on yield is complicated :P

Fair enough though. I've been trying to do a little reading on GMO and such, damn there's so much negativity towards it, for as far as I can tell, almost no reason. Bee population decline isn't from GMOs, grain yields are up and rising (http://www.agry.purdue.edu/ext/corn/news/timeless/YieldTrends.html) and the farmers that I've seen enter the discussion pretty much all are much happier using them than organic farming.


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/earth/agriculture/geneticmodification/11196045/Genetically-modified-crops-are-the-future-and-must-not-be-blocked-say-scientists.html
Apparently blight is not just a thing from Warcraft 3 and kills loads of potatoes #JeSuisPotato.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on January 17, 2015, 12:03:53 AM
damn there's so much negativity towards it, for as far as I can tell, almost no reason.

Yeah, there's a commonly held idea that GM food is just a tool for agri-business to profit from at the expense of public health, which just isn't true. In the bill mentioned a UK green MEP from the south east spoke and implied quite heavily that the only anyone wants to introduce GM crops is to profit from it. That's the level of argument I expect from hippies on the internet, to see it entering politics is depressing.

The yield thing is indeed true, but that's also due to improved agri-chemicals and more productive farming techniques, which may not be sustainable.

Apparently blight is not just a thing from Warcraft 3 and kills loads of potatoes #JeSuisPotato.

Yeah, Irish potato famine. That was a super-virulent version but it's a pretty powerful disease anyway
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on January 18, 2015, 08:48:51 PM
New polling suggests a similar proportion of people support labelling food for if it contains DNA as support labelling of GM foods

http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2015/01/17/over-80-percent-of-americans-support-mandatory-labels-on-foods-containing-dna/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 19, 2015, 06:32:01 AM
Lol.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 19, 2015, 10:59:39 AM
According to Oxfam the worlds richest 1% might soon have more wealth than the rest of the world combined. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30875633

And I found this article on why that may well actually harm said 1% to be quite interesting, never really thought about it before but I've also never understood the point of being so wealthy. I mean you surely can't actually notice any difference in owning 10 billion or 20 billion, how would you reasonably spend anywhere near as much as that?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30878840
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 19, 2015, 12:51:05 PM
I could do with a billion.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: TTG4 on January 19, 2015, 06:41:11 PM
When you think about, 1% is actually quite a lot of people, at least 70 million.

If I remember rightly, in order to be in the top 1% of wealth you have to own your own house and it be worth at least £500000. Which doesn't seem too extreme.

Statistics are fun!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 19, 2015, 07:00:27 PM
I'm pretty tired at the moment but I can't see what reason they're giving as to why such inequality is bad. Don't get me wrong, I know why its bad but for looking I can't see anything explaining just why.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 19, 2015, 07:59:33 PM
Oh the reasons seem pretty weak, its not actually a good article (in my opinion.) Basically they are saying that hoarding wealth would cause stagnation of the economy and that a lack of money addressing problems suffered by poor folks can mean those problems get a lot bigger and end up costing more money when rich peeps have to pay attention (and money) to them. But I'm pretty sure most/all of the super wealthy will have the majority of their wealth already invested in things rather than sitting around in many giant pairs of socks. And not spending money on poor people's problems is more of a not caring about other peoples problems problem which definitely isn't something that only affects the wealthy. Actually I seem to recall that the evidence is that millionaires are more likely to be philanthropic than the rest of the population is.
I just found it interesting because I've never understood why the super rich push themselves to be the super rich, I understand that its more about competing/winning than it is about having money but I just don't see it being a fun game. Meh.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 19, 2015, 08:15:36 PM
Ah ok fair enough. Given that I'll never see that kind of money I try not to think about it :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 28, 2015, 12:23:06 PM
And now for something completely different:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-31018677

Quote
Florida 'zombie cat' crawls out of grave
A cat in Florida has had surgery after apparently clawing its way out of his grave following a collision with a car.
Bart was discovered by its owner's neighbour in Tampa five days after he was found lying in the road stiff in a pool of blood, and was presumed dead.
He is now recovering after treatment for a broken jaw and ruptured eye.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Tom on February 03, 2015, 05:45:05 PM
Was the cat on bath salts?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 05, 2015, 10:35:47 PM
http://kotaku.com/only-one-lgbtq-person-allowed-per-team-in-league-of-leg-1683515948

Huehuehue. Apparently LGBT players are so good they're capped at 1 per team in this League of Legends tournament xD
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 05, 2015, 10:53:04 PM
Says at the bottom they reversed their decision. What a shock. But it also says that anyone self-identifying as female can participate, so there's nothing barring a whole bunch of dudes signing up and saying that they "self-identify" as female.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 05, 2015, 11:01:03 PM
Yup, it's just hilarious. It's like they were scared of white chicks style guys going to the tournament xD

So glad the community bitchslapped them so hard for these stupid tourney rules. For once the LoL community came through. And I'm fairly confident I'll never say that again.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 05, 2015, 11:54:46 PM
Whilst I am someone who is not accustomed to quote tumblr, I think it is fair for once to say that I genuinely do not even.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 06, 2015, 12:26:21 AM
Wat?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 06, 2015, 12:01:43 PM
Exactly. In other news: Bungie might be getting bought back by Microsoft.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 06, 2015, 06:59:46 PM
Bungie?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 06, 2015, 07:55:22 PM
Halo 1, 2 and 3 when they were with MS before ODST, Reach and Destiny after the split. The former are considered good games, the latter not so much.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on February 06, 2015, 08:01:10 PM
ODST and Reach were pretty good, I've not played Destiny but apparently it's, um, not very good.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 06, 2015, 08:54:06 PM
ODST was my favourite Halo game truth be told but the first three received much better popular and critical acclaim iirc.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 16, 2015, 10:10:36 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/16/world/cia-is-said-to-have-bought-and-destroyed-iraqi-chemical-weapons.html?_r=0
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on February 26, 2015, 08:00:36 PM
The Federal Communications Commission in the United States has voted in favour of strong net neutrality rules - see this BBC News article (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-31638528). I think this is good news, especially given our own official stance (http://www.exilian.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=3534.0) on the subject.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 26, 2015, 11:55:29 PM
Yays :D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 27, 2015, 12:00:18 AM
Moar boobs!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 27, 2015, 12:12:00 AM
But what happens when they decide what can and can't be on the internet? They already regulate the crap out of what can be shown on television.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 27, 2015, 12:18:12 AM
Yes, the government regulation side of it is a concern, though I think it's something where I'd rather it was in the hands of government than industry since at least we can kick government out. Of course, in practice they can't regulate data flows this big anyway, it's simply impractical, so even though I'd rather government hadn't reclassified it as telecommunications I'm not that worried about them massively regulating services.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 09, 2015, 12:25:42 AM
In other news, a man in the US is facing long term imprisonment despite a staggering lack of evidence that he has actually committed anything recognisable as a crime:
http://thefreethoughtproject.com/man-criminal-record-facing-life-prison-flashing-gang-signs-facebook/#dT7q93U705mXEJUo.99
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 25, 2015, 05:46:26 PM
There is apparently an IS presence in Tattooine. Literally.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/24/isis-star-wars-tunisia_n_6936188.html?ncid=fcbklnkushpmg00000014
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 26, 2015, 12:59:46 AM
Jabba will not be pleased.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 26, 2015, 01:11:58 AM
In a shock move, President Obama has issued a shipment of ten thousand thermal detonators to supporters in the region... :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on March 26, 2015, 09:06:08 AM
Clarkson got fired from Top Gear, May and Hammond likely quitting. TGs going to suck, especially if they try and bbcify it.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 26, 2015, 10:28:35 AM
I think the BBC kind of had to let him go though. Abusing/punching more junior staff members shouldn't be OK anywhere, and it worries me how many people online were even going as far as abusing the guy who got punched...

I'm sure Top Gear is going to take a big hit, but ultimately the fault for rhat is with JC.

Also can we get Hammond to do a new Time Commanders series now?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 26, 2015, 01:07:42 PM
Only if he uses Exilian mods.

Also: http://i.imgur.com/EXxXT5W.webm
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on March 26, 2015, 03:19:39 PM
Oh no doubt he should have got fired. People saying those things online are not the people who would actually do anything.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 26, 2015, 05:04:00 PM
Surprised this wasn't made already, so I made it.
(http://cdn.meme.am/instances/500x/60668106.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 26, 2015, 06:38:17 PM
I'm sure they're not people who would actually do anything, it's just quite a depressing reaction given how clear-cut the case was.

Also the assholes who were posting and retweeting "je suis Clarkson". Which is TOTALLY not okay.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Othko97 on April 27, 2015, 07:42:26 AM
What is it with the american police these days?
http://revolution-news.com/virginia-police-caught-assaulting-teens-video-deletion-fails/ (http://revolution-news.com/virginia-police-caught-assaulting-teens-video-deletion-fails/)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 27, 2015, 10:06:57 AM
Something like this, apparently:


More seriously... I don't know. It's just really depressing :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on April 27, 2015, 01:08:29 PM
What is it with the american police these days?
I think there are two factors here:
1. Changes to police behaviour
2. Changes to people's ability to record and publicise that behaviour (i.e. phone cameras and the 'Net)

My suspicion is that we now see more of this sort of thing because news reporting is becoming more "crowd-sourced", and not necessarily because the police are behaving any worse.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on April 27, 2015, 01:16:10 PM
I wouldn't recommend reading the comments...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 27, 2015, 03:09:30 PM
Dammit, I'm going to have to read the comments now.

EDIT: Pretty appalling, but I've read worse, sadly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 03, 2015, 10:15:56 AM
In other news, what the actual portugal, Mike Huckabee?

http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward/2015/06/02/mike_huckabee_says_he_would_have_pretended_to_be_trans_to_shower_with_girls.html
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 26, 2015, 05:24:30 PM
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/27/us/supreme-court-same-sex-marriage.html?_r=0

Yay for gays.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 26, 2015, 05:42:12 PM
Huzzah  :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 27, 2015, 01:51:20 AM
AK-47s Equal rights, for everyone! Obscure reference if anyone gets it. :P

But still if you support the right to marry then you should support the right to carry, and vice versa, like the Libertarian Party has been doing since 1971. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 27, 2015, 11:21:26 AM
I think the counter from a liberal perspective would be the harm principle - guns are more likely to kill people than same sex marriages, which are not known for their use as assault weapons. I think if Americans as a whole want the right to carry guns for cultural reasons that's their business, of course, but at least for the UK I don't see a problem with having one and not the other. I guess for the US I'd still like to see slightly better systems to avoid nutjobs getting their hands so easily on assault rifles, but I can see a federal approach is near impossible to work with.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 27, 2015, 01:04:21 PM
Assault rifle? Those are only used by military personnel. Civilians typically aren't legally able to own an assault rifle. Big time criminals sometimes get them sure, that happens in your country too. That term is just for media hype. According to them all of these problems boil down to "assault rifles". That Charleston kid didn't use one, so don't buy into the bullarmadillo. ;) And besides, the problem starts with the nutjob, a person, not a "gun" or the millions of people who own them responsibly.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 27, 2015, 02:09:19 PM
The liberal perspective as a whole should be in favour of the right to carry surely? I thought the whole point of it was more rights, more freedoms and equality. Saying you can't do something goes against that? You're against the extra security and all traffic monitoring for the internet which is in consideration due to the actions of a few nutjobs again who commit crimes online. You can say that hacking doesn't kill anyone, sure, but say you're identity gets stolen and used as a scapegoat for crimes and spend the next 15 in Wakefield or someones money and savings are taken and they kill themselves or something. It's all of a muchness in my view.

I'm all for the right to carry in principle but I don't think it's right for the UK at the moment or perhaps ever given how little space there is for it. I think we should definitely have gun ranges though.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 27, 2015, 10:10:10 PM
Rob: For me, as a liberal, it's about balancing what's likely to curtail freedom most: in other words, I think it's about weighing up the likelihood of someone taking someone else's freedom (to survive, for example) away with a gun versus the idea that people should be allowed to carry a gun. I think the UK's fairly strict gun control is right; we don't totally ban guns, and indeed I wouldn't support a total ban on all guns ever, but we do require people to have strict background checks. And that's pretty successful at ensuring we avoid gun massacres, which are a much larger impediment to someone's freedom than "you need to fill in these forms before we let you have a gun". I don't feel that is all of a muchness with the risk of identity theft, just since when someone's dead it's rather more immediately permanent.

I guess I should note that this way of looking at things isn't universal among liberals: part of what it comes down to is a split between liberals who are only liberals versus the state (perhaps these could be described as libertarians), and people like me who are liberals versus other power sources as well. So libertarians would tend to be more in favour of, for example, lower taxes, right to carry, etc, because higher taxes and removing guns is the state encroaching on an individual. Social liberals like me would tend to be concerned too, though, with the fact that individuals can oppress and remove the freedoms of one another - so will often advocate things which encroach on the liberty of one individual in order to protect and safeguard the liberty of another. Which isn't ideal, but in my view private power is as dangerous to freedom as public and state power is most of the time, so there needs to be some way to counterbalance that.

CG: Assault rifle was probably the wrong term, but these massacres are carried out usually with things that are a lot more dangerous than most of the guns available in the UK. And sure, the person may be the root of the problem, but a nutjob who only has a knife in a kitchen drawer will statistically be likely to kill far fewer people than a nutjob with any sort of weapon that's semi-automatic or has a sizeable magazine. As I say, I have no problem with you guys deciding you want guns anyway, but it's simply not true to pretend that all the mass shootings you guys have would happen anyway with or without easily available guns. We do have nutjobs over here too, but we don't have regular gun massacres.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 27, 2015, 10:31:27 PM
I won't be handing my rights over for statistics, Joob. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 27, 2015, 10:45:19 PM
Well, that's kind of my point. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 27, 2015, 11:10:20 PM
I can typing.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 28, 2015, 10:00:27 AM
Tbh is there even any point in a national debate over gun control in the US? I don't see any way you could realistically withdraw so many weapons from the general population without common criminals (as in pretty much any mug who wants to mug someone) keeping hold of even fairly high powered guns.
Edit:
The rainbow chat on the chatbox reminded me of this, UKIPs LGBT society were excluded from the london pride march, apparently on the basis of safety concerns after some llamabags opposed their invitation to join. http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/jun/05/ukip-banned-from-gay-pride-march-after-partys-inclusion-stokes-anger
But I read another article saying they took part anyway and it was all fine and dandy, so meh I guess.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 28, 2015, 11:11:33 AM
So what happened was basically that the organisation was told not to appear, not the individuals. It wasn't a case of banning the people at all (which I'd be against), but saying that a party with UKIP's views on gay marriage probably shouldn't be displaying its banners at a pride rally, which I guess kinda makes sense? I mean, otherwise you'd have to agree that the Tory party could turn up as part of anti-austerity rallies, or that fracking companies could wave banners around in anti-fracking protests, etc, which just seems silly. I guess the problem for Pride is that it's now sort of somewhere between a carnival/celebration of LGBT people and unity (in which case it makes sense to have all LGBT groups there regardless) and a political statement/movement/protest (in which case it's fair that they require attendees to be "on-message").
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 28, 2015, 12:17:08 PM
The Libertarian Party was banned from Pride rallies here in US.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 28, 2015, 12:28:57 PM
That I think is less sensible - though as far as I can tell it was just one incident in Washington?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 28, 2015, 04:33:44 PM
On liberals: Oh. Sounds similar to anti-establishment-ism and anarchism.

On guns: We were allowed handguns up until 1997 at which point gun violence increased until 2005 where it's been steadily declining to around pre-ban levels. To me that says that if someone is looking to shoot someone, they find a way regardless of laws on ownership. I don't think there's any particular reason to own a gun except for fun, owning one for home defence I think is not quite a good enough reason unless it's just a handgun. Also you might be forgetting the 20...12? massacre in cumbria. We still get them occasionally.

On gays: UKIP aren't anti-gays Jub. And if you look in a certain light it can read: you can't support gays and want to leave the eu. The pride rally is about inclusion and they exclude a portion of people over something unrelated.

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2014/03/18/nigel-farage-confirms-that-ukip-will-not-abolish-same-sex-marriage/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 17, 2015, 09:23:56 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-33964830

Batman is dead apparently :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 06, 2015, 11:13:19 AM
Quote
Senate candidate in Florida admits drinking goat blood

A Florida candidate for US Senate has come under criticism after it emerged that he once killed a goat and drank its blood.

Augustus Sol Invictus admits he "sacrificed" the animal as part of a pagan ritual, but it was not "sadistic" as some of his critics have alleged.

The Libertarian Party candidate is unlikely to win the seat.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-34450057

What IS it with Florida?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on October 07, 2015, 12:24:21 AM
I'd say that's just a portugaled-up individual wherever it is from.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 07, 2015, 11:14:59 AM
Yeah, just every time I see a story that weird from the US it seems to be Florida more often than not.

Though I'm honestly less concerned about the goat sacrifice than his apparent backing by white supremacists...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 08, 2015, 01:16:20 PM
Israel made a mistake letting Palestinians back in apparently. Who knew? Wait, me yeah that's who.

Russia's is getting beefed up for some sort of conflict. If it's against Europe, we'll get spanked.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 08, 2015, 01:24:20 PM
Russia is hardly going to "attack Europe" en masse; it's all about salami tactics. They'll gear up and, say, shore up their areas in Ukraine, or fully reinstall Assad but as a Russian puppet. Big, but not big enough to draw Western forces in properly. Could Russia try a mass invasion of Europe? Possibly, but they'd bleed like anything doing so, not least because the US, for all that it's not what it was in superpower terms, still has frankly absurd levels of firepower stationed in all sorts of convenient locations around the continent. I think Russia's ambitions will be fairly calmly paced to ensure that whatever they do it'll never seem quite big enough to draw Britain/France/America into a full on conflict.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 27, 2015, 09:34:25 PM
Overkill studios are getting serious backlash from the gaming community after implementing a mild form of pay2win in the co-operative shooter PAYDAY2. Reddit is losing it's armadillo. But then again it's like 7k people downvoting all the OVK posts and over 100k people play the game.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 27, 2015, 11:30:10 PM
Not a game I've heard of, should I have done? I guess what's always hard to know with these things is what answer you'd actually get if you polled everyone - whether silence means consent, apathy, or not having enough time & energy to speak.

Meanwhile, in Minnesota people are smashing up cars with vegetables now:
http://www.grandforksherald.com/news/region/3869742-watch-now-massive-pumpkin-smashes-minivan
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on October 28, 2015, 12:30:39 AM
Meanwhile, in Minnesota people are smashing up cars with vegetables now:
I was sufficiently curious to do the obvious physics calculations for this. A 1465 lb (666 kg) mass at a height of 80 feet (24.4 m) has a potential energy of 159 kJ. Assuming no significant air drag, the impact speed is 21.9 m/s = 48.7 mph.

After that I'm not surprised the minivan crumpled the way it did - it was hit by the equivalent of a small car at almost 50mph, and from a direction where there's no reason to design crash resistance.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on October 28, 2015, 03:50:38 PM
Not a game I've heard of, should I have done? I guess what's always hard to know with these things is what answer you'd actually get if you polled everyone - whether silence means consent, apathy, or not having enough time & energy to speak.

I'm probably right in saying it's the largest co-op shooter around. OVK has said it has been a statistical success (whatever that means, probably that they made enough money to count for the fewer people playing the game and therefore lower dlc sales) so the silence is consent probably in this case. It's a great game if you like shooters or stealing or random funny things happening during co-op gameplay.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 28, 2015, 04:00:03 PM
"No reason to design crash resistance for car rooves" says prominent dragon. Hmmm...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 08, 2015, 12:21:41 PM
So in Burundi the government has openly promised to wipe out anyone who didn't willingly turn over their weapons. And people say this sort of thing doesn't happen in the modern world.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on November 09, 2015, 04:29:30 PM
Do they?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 09, 2015, 05:16:02 PM
Aye, in Amrika all the time.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 15, 2015, 01:09:16 PM
So much for Ronda Rousey...
(http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/11/15/article-doc-5t8kb-2NvKacyspse40aacd88478ca2e96-693_634x399.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 15, 2015, 06:35:59 PM
Who?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 15, 2015, 06:56:01 PM
Exactly. She's instantly a nobody.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 15, 2015, 07:05:38 PM
I'd vaguely heard of her beforehand. Some sort of wrestler or something?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on November 18, 2015, 06:03:04 PM
Olympic judoka turned MMA champion, she had gone unbeaten in MMA until now, but most of he  opponents were frankly quite crap so it's not saying much.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 18, 2015, 11:30:14 PM
http://www.infowars.com/saudi-arabia-has-100000-empty-air-conditioned-tents-that-can-house-3-million-people-yet-has-taken-zero-refugees/

portugaling llamas.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 20, 2015, 01:50:24 AM
 :bump:
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 20, 2015, 10:45:06 AM
Sorry, was halfway through a reply to this when I fell asleep.


Basically, yes, the Saudis are armadillobags, bear a lot of responsibility for the horrendous state of some parts of the Middle East, and we need to be prepared to actually disagree with them a lot more often. I'm not sure we can force them to take responsibility for refugees, and I certainly don't think the fact that they're being arseholes means that we should, but it would be nice if we at least pressured them to use their ridiculous array of military hardware in fighting IS. Or just doing something. With allies like them we barely need enemies.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on November 20, 2015, 11:42:27 AM
I expect I'm being stoopid there but it usually seems to me that the war on terrorism would probably have gone better if we'd invaded SA instead of iraq. Obviously invading no one would have been best but hey ho.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 20, 2015, 11:50:15 PM
Barama spent over 3 million on personal holidays this year. Hint: he didn't pay for it himself.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on November 20, 2015, 11:54:24 PM
This is why we should all be run by that guy from Uruguay. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on November 20, 2015, 11:55:48 PM
Uruguay! Imaguay! We're all guay!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on December 12, 2015, 04:02:09 PM
Can't remember if there's already a thread on cop shootings so I'll share this here thing that popped up on the Facebook here
http://www.copblock.org/149061/dui-shooting/
Looks like attempted murder to me, but apparently American police are now so badly trained they manage to accidentally shoot people who are posing no threat. Also looks like two shots are fired in that video to my untrained eye.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 09, 2016, 01:38:35 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-35271903

In Soviet Putin's Russia...?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Gmd on January 09, 2016, 06:12:07 PM
O.O
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 10, 2016, 03:29:45 PM
Asshat kicks a nurse so someone decks him, that could literally have happened anywhere. Just a case of bad luck that the guy died.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 11, 2016, 01:48:57 PM
David Bowie died.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 11, 2016, 02:06:20 PM
Aye, I saw :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 11, 2016, 04:35:58 PM
:O


Daaaamn...Bowie was so great. :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Lady Grey on January 11, 2016, 06:14:22 PM
It's sad he's gone, but I'm glad his suffering is over. It must have been a tough last 18 months for him. :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 12, 2016, 01:44:09 PM
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 14, 2016, 10:45:06 PM
Didn't anyone see that Alan Rickman died? :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: SaidaiSloth on January 14, 2016, 10:59:47 PM
I was waiting for the Oscars love blog on guardian, thought I'd see if there was a discussion on r/movies... :(
I know he did a lot of smaller stuff, but die hard and harry potter were some of the first more mature movies I watched as a kid*, and Alan rickman was the best part of both of those movies.
RIP

* I watched die hard before harry potter...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 14, 2016, 11:03:47 PM
I've watched Die Hard and not Harry Potter. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on January 14, 2016, 11:15:18 PM
Yeah and Lemmy end of last month but he got little coverage. Cancer sucks.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 14, 2016, 11:30:44 PM
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 14, 2016, 11:59:16 PM
Not a good week for celebrity deaths :/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 02, 2016, 12:34:56 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-northamptonshire-35470341


She went to my school. Didn't know her personally but friends of mine knew her said she was nice. Also the pic doesn't do her justice she was exceptionally pretty.


Unfortunately this is not unusual. St James is one of the worse areas to be around. Actually I pointed it out to cg when he was over.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Lady Grey on February 02, 2016, 01:29:17 PM
:( Sorry to hear that Clockwork - I know you said you didn't know her personally but I know what it's like to lose someone you went to school with, it can leave you a bit shaken.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 03, 2016, 08:26:20 AM
Thanks LG
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 07, 2016, 02:58:18 PM
http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/1960087-colorado-department-of-transportation-using-world-war-ii-howitzer-to-clear-snow/

Yay.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on February 08, 2016, 05:54:05 PM
Thats pretty awesome.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 12, 2016, 12:05:31 PM
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/feb/11/tim-farron-legalisation-cannabis-recreational-use

My lot (also Glaurung's lot, and TTG4's lot...) are now formally behind legalising weed  :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 12, 2016, 03:56:54 PM
It failed in Ohio, but because they didn't do it right.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on February 12, 2016, 05:14:17 PM
Good to see Tim blazing the trail. Heh heh heh.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 12, 2016, 05:40:23 PM
Good to see Tim blazing the trail. Heh heh heh.
In all seriousness this is better than some of the stuff our press people come up with sometimes.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 13, 2016, 10:41:11 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-35571868

The US Supreme Court has one less person with a name like a bond villain on it. Farewell and RIP to Antonin Scalia, probably the Supreme Court's most hardline socially conservative judge.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 14, 2016, 11:32:11 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-35571837

US accidentally ships sensitive military tech to Cuba. So when you worry about your luggage going the wrong way at the airport...  :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 14, 2016, 03:07:04 PM
Blame Canada!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 17, 2016, 11:19:11 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-northamptonshire-35595493


Grim. Northamptons police force; most of the ones I've met have been nice but this is lowering my estimation of them as a whole.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 18, 2016, 12:45:38 AM
Grim indeed. I do wonder what sort of training/screening these officers get.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on February 18, 2016, 09:29:31 PM
Grim. Northamptons police force; most of the ones I've met have been nice but this is lowering my estimation of them as a whole.
Grim indeed, but I would try not to let it reflect on your estimation of a particular police service, or police in general. They're human beings: none of them are perfect, and some of them commit crimes, like the rest of the human race. It would be interesting to know how the crime rates for police officers match up to those for the population as a whole. One would hope that police commit fewer crimes than the average person.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on February 19, 2016, 12:57:13 AM
That is incredibly messed up, but yeah like G said they are just people some are always going to be scumbags. And that's always going to be the case, regardless of how well trained or screened they are. Still, one bastard doesn't have to taint the rest of the police force.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 19, 2016, 03:03:59 AM
There's also this and its only february http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-northamptonshire-35461145.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on February 19, 2016, 03:23:18 AM
Must be something in the water.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on February 19, 2016, 09:57:32 AM

hearthstone apparently has 40 million players.

http://www.dailydot.com/esports/hearthstone-40-million-players/?utm_content=inf_63_2862_2&utm_source=FBTraffic&utm_medium=jabra&utm_campaign=CMfacebook&tse_id=INF_2d16f001908542969d56591fa900ef8c
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on February 27, 2016, 10:27:39 PM
10 years and 2000 lashes for being an atheist. Remind me not to go to Saudi Arabia...
http://www.timesofisrael.com/saudi-man-gets-10-years-for-tweeting-his-atheism/
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 13, 2016, 12:27:39 PM
http://m.dissexpress.co.uk/news/latest-news/former-diss-student-leads-petition-against-uk-government-plans-1-7271249
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 13, 2016, 09:24:23 PM
Remind me not to go to diss.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 13, 2016, 10:54:02 PM
Are you a regular Diss Express reader then, CG? :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 13, 2016, 11:05:29 PM
Who isn't?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 13, 2016, 11:27:46 PM
I get a copy mailed to me daily.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2016, 09:25:34 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-35848687

Ian Duncan Smith, former Conservative leader and Work and Pensions Secretary, has resigned from the government after the treasury attempted to get him to cut benefits for the disabled further. This is fairly big news, not least because the Conservatives have been absurdly and relentlessly disciplined over the last few years, and this is a rare example of a major figure breaking ranks. It's bad news both for the Chancellor, who wants to be next Tory leader and will be damaged by being seen to trigger a resignation this big, and also for the Prime Minister, who now has to deal with one of his predecessors campaigning for an EU exit from the backbenches where he can criticise the government much more freely.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 18, 2016, 09:51:31 PM
Also hopefully a sign that the cuts to disability benefits shall not pass.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 18, 2016, 10:09:15 PM
Apparently they're being "kicked into the long grass", as was announced shortly before the IDS resignation. It's an odd order of events really.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on March 18, 2016, 10:26:48 PM
My suspicion is that this has very little to do with the disability benefit cuts themselves, given what IDS's department has already done over the last five years. It looks much more like an opportune moment for IDS to stick a knife into Osborne (note the forthcoming Tory leadership election) and free himself for the "Out" campaign.

EDIT:
Several more links that might be of interest:
- the text of the resignation letter (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-35848891) (from the BBC News website)
- IDS resignation 'undermines everything' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-35849065): some immediate commentary from the BBC's Political Editor
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on March 19, 2016, 10:06:10 AM
Peoples in Norway America made a heart from stem cells and it's beating.


http://www.side3.no/vitenskap/dette-hjertet-er-dyrket-i-et-laboratorium---na-har-det-begynt-a-sla/3423204817.html (http://www.side3.no/vitenskap/dette-hjertet-er-dyrket-i-et-laboratorium---na-har-det-begynt-a-sla/3423204817.html)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on March 19, 2016, 11:45:36 AM
Thanks for posting this - it's interesting and very promising research.

The article is Norwegian, but it turns out the research has been done in the US, by Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. There's an English-language article here (http://www.popsci.com/scientists-grow-transplantable-hearts-with-stem-cells). I'm not sure we're quite at the point yet of growing a whole heart from scratch, though that does seem to be the target; however, using stem cells to repair damaged hearts would now seem to be feasible.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on March 19, 2016, 12:49:58 PM
I thought you'd find it interesting. I'll be honest I found the pic of the heart in a jar on imgur with a link and haven't actually read the article, so thanks for the clarification :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 21, 2016, 05:28:44 PM
That's pretty cool.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on March 31, 2016, 03:27:58 PM
Ronnie Corbett dies at 85.


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-35934024
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 31, 2016, 05:20:10 PM
Much sadnesses :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on April 01, 2016, 01:05:03 AM
Naww. No ronnies.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 01, 2016, 09:18:52 AM
It is goodbye from him and goodbye from him :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on April 14, 2016, 12:59:36 PM
Apparently there are more tigers now. Yay I guess.


https://www.worldwildlife.org/stories/for-the-first-time-in-100-years-tiger-numbers-are-growing
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 14, 2016, 06:05:23 PM
Yay, rare and occasional good news :D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on May 02, 2016, 04:44:34 PM
Livingstone is a nazi and Corbyn is ok with that. Wow these guys are really 'for the people'. portugal whatever other political leanings you have, if you're in favour of relocating Jews from Israel like Khan, Livingstone and Corbyn then you're a portugaling fascist.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 02, 2016, 06:07:19 PM
Yeah there's a real antisemitism problem in parts of the British left. People like Galloway and Livingstone just have a historical blindness that is worrying to see. It's a problem my party has to some extent too with people like David Ward, though it seems to be much more widespread and unpleasant on Labour's left and the hard left. I agree though - whilst I'm not sure Israel in its current constitutional form is going to remain a stable prospect geopolitically, any solution has to absolutely recognise the rights of Israelis to stay in their homes and be free of persecution.

Assuming you mean Sadiq Khan, though, I'm pretty sure he's said nothing indicating he's in favour of that? I don't think Corbyn has either, though he's certainly not been tough enough to admit the existence of the problem and I think his presence and his rather dodgy history with some anti-semites may be emboldening Labour's anti-semites so he badly needs to crack down on them.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on May 02, 2016, 07:15:14 PM
It was Nasz Shah (think that's her name) who was suspended for antisemitic Facebook posts and whom Ken Livingstone was defending, maybe that's who clockwork meant? Interestingly her local synagogue actually seemed to be mildly supportive of her, from what I've heard it sounds like she used to genuinely believe some of the crazy antisemitic conspiracy theories, but maybe she actually has changed her opinion since then. I'd say its highlighting the problem of antisemitism within Islamic communities as much (if not more, probably more) than within the left. I suspect it makes me a tremendous racist to say such things though. Oh well.
Ken Livingstone does seem to be pretty nuts, I'm not sure if he actually is antisemitic or if he just gets confused about the armadillo he comes out with. He really doesn't seem great at being a politician either way.

Not particularly newsworthy, but since we're on this subject I might as well mention there were some allegations of antisemitism against the new NUS president. It sounded more like people were confusing anti Israel sentiment with antisemitism to me but I couldn't be bothered to look into it much further because who the portugal cares about the NUS.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 02, 2016, 11:28:51 PM
Livingstone is a bit past it I think. Hopefully Shah will learn from past mistakes. I think a lot of people on the left are very confused about Israel/Palestine, and lump Israel in as a "colonial oppressor" which is a poisonous way of looking at a situation that's much, much more complex than that. London politics in particular seems to be currently involving dog-whistle antisemitism from leftists like Galloway and Livingstone opposed by dog-whistle Islamophobia from the Tories. It's grim.

Some of the things Malia Bouattia has said were anti-Semitic, I think - not high-level explicit anti-Semitism but definitely borderline at best, using tropes like complaining about the "Zionist media" which are dog-whistle terms that date back to the old fascist lie of a global Jewish conspiracy. I don't think they were unforgiveable statements, but at the very, very least for someone in an office like that she should have been able to recognise that she said the wrong thing, why it was wrong, etc - instead she just got very defensive. I feel like anyone who alienates Jewish students as much and as fast as she has is probably not well suited to a job like NUS president.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 05, 2016, 12:47:00 AM
http://www.bbc.com/news/business-36200481?ocid=socialflow_facebook&ns_mchannel=social&ns_campaign=bbcnews&ns_source=facebook

Only posting because it sort of reminded me of the Klingon thing and also it's a giant 'up yours' to Apple. ;D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 12, 2016, 01:27:33 AM
http://www.newsweek.com/gene-simmons-reflects-bowie-prince-deaths-457851

Genie of the lamp.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on May 12, 2016, 02:55:34 AM
He's a pretty cool guy, don't take no armadillo from nobody.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on May 17, 2016, 05:39:22 PM
Good news everyone! Shrooms are good for you.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-36247599
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 17, 2016, 07:47:13 PM
Ooh, that is interesting.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on May 17, 2016, 08:23:45 PM
It's legal to pick and eat them if you don't know what they are. Just sayin.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on May 17, 2016, 08:45:46 PM
On the other hand, eating random wild fungi can produce undesirable symptoms ranging from a bad stomach upset to rapid and painful death. As I understand it some quite dangerous fungi look disconcertingly similar to safe and tasty ones, so sampling wild fungi should be undertaken with care.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 17, 2016, 08:59:30 PM
(http://weknowmemes.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/know-your-mushrooms.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 18, 2016, 11:15:22 PM
Pretty sure the world has more than 4 kinds of mushroom in it :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on May 18, 2016, 11:48:49 PM
Well yeah Mario even has more than the one. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 19, 2016, 12:02:46 AM
You'd hope so, what with it being the mushroom kingdom and all :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 11, 2016, 02:12:36 PM
Christina Grimme was killed signing autographs.


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-36506082
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 12, 2016, 11:32:38 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-36513658

Huge terror/hate attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, fifty dead apparently. Really grim day, especially for the LGBT community.  :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 13, 2016, 01:09:55 AM
Really grim day for anyone really.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 13, 2016, 09:52:24 AM
Yeah. The amount of blood donations and such is a great response though. http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/06/12/481795633/blood-banks-see-massive-response-after-orlando-attack
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 13, 2016, 10:33:47 AM
CG: True, though I know friends of mine who are LGBT are feeling especially rattled/worried that they're going to be targeted further in future.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 13, 2016, 12:36:48 PM
The only thing we have to fear is fear itself!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 16, 2016, 09:18:10 PM
Labour MP Jo Cox has been murdered, apparently by a lone far-right terrorist who may have had mental health problems though some of the details are still unclear.

Campaigning in the EU referendum has thus been suspended at least for the next day or two.

I'm just feeling shellshocked and quite shaken by it.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 16, 2016, 10:55:24 PM
She was shot?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 16, 2016, 10:59:41 PM
Shot and stabbed; the attacker used some kind of handmade/antiquated gun at very close range, according to reports.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 16, 2016, 11:04:45 PM
Here's the BBC News article (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-36550304). This is the darkest day in British politics for many years.

Here's another link, to an article (http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2016/06/a-day-of-infamy/) in the Spectator. It expresses a lot of what I'm feeling now, but rather more carefully and eloquently than I am currently able to.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 17, 2016, 04:28:19 PM
It's becoming increasingly clear that this was a far-right terrorist attack; reports are just coming in that police have found a lot of far-right material at the killer's house, and suspect that the attack was a premeditated assassination.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 17, 2016, 05:11:33 PM
Well obviously. Who else would kill a far left nut other than a far right nut?

If it happened here CNN be all like "he had a homemade ar15 assault rifle".
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 17, 2016, 07:14:12 PM
Who else would kill a far left nut other than a far right nut?
CG: I don't know whether you're joking about this, perhaps because I have no sense of humour whatsoever about the whole situation at the moment. In fact I am extremely angry.

I would just point out that Jo Cox was not "a far-left nut": she was an elected representative in the UK Parliament, standing for a mainstream UK party. She had previously worked as a director for the charity Oxfam, with a particular focus on refugees from Syria, and was also active in the Remain campaign - both things which may have contributed to her becoming a target. She evidently cared a great deal about people, both close to her and further away, and worked very hard to make the world a better place. If you'd like to know more, there is extensive coverage on the BBC News website (via the link I posted yesterday) and every other British media outlet.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 17, 2016, 07:37:10 PM
World keeps on spinnin'.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 17, 2016, 11:07:53 PM
CG: I thought we were friends. If so, I'd appreciate you taking a little time to understand my position. If you can't be bothered to do that, then at least have the civility to keep quiet.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 18, 2016, 12:16:10 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-36562167
I found this article quite an interesting read, it's rare that we think of just how vulnerable our MPs are to such violence even in normal times. Although strangely enough I had been thinking about this recently, in that I found it odd that terrorist groups don't target MPs, since even quite high profile politicians should be relatively easy to assassinate for someone willing to die for it. But I guess that doesn't actually do anything to sow fear in the general public, and wouldn't do any good for most terrorist groups.
Yet more cheery thoughts for the news thread.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 18, 2016, 12:41:19 AM
I found it odd that terrorist groups don't target MPs
Not at the moment, but the IRA and INLA did - four murders of MPs between 1979 and 1990. This included the bomb at the Brighton hotel hosting the Conservative Party conference in 1984, which could easily have killed many members of the government. Wikipedia article (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_serving_British_MPs_who_were_assassinated) for reference.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 18, 2016, 12:48:08 AM
Sorry, G. It wasn't meant to be a personal attack on you.

We're all friends here, I hope. It's just these damn politics.

And if you think murder isn't part of politics, well, history would tell a very different story. Not inconceivable even in the 21st century. Humans always have and always will be violent animals. The only way we've evolved in the last few thousand years is coming up with more effective ways to murder each other.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 18, 2016, 10:26:40 AM
I accept that murder is, very occasionally, a part of politics. However, it shouldn't be. Reading through the Wikipedia list I posted last night, this is the first time since at least 1800 (and probably the English Civil War in the 1640s) that an MP has been killed purely because of their political beliefs. Six were killed by Irish republican groups, at least in part because they represented the British state; one was killed over a personal debt. Only Jo Cox has been killed for standing up for what she believed in.

This feels to me like a direct attack on a lot of things that I hold dear, especially the sense I have of Britain as a civilised country where we can have political debate, however vigorous, without resorting to violence. It's a dagger in the guts of our political process - I am shocked and outraged. Also, my political resolve is strengthened: it is vitally important to show that we can do politics calmly and civilly, and to be seen to do so. So I will carry on my activities with the LibDems and the Remain campaign with Jo Cox very much in mind.

Meanwhile, in further news, the man arrested on Thursday has now been formally charged with the murder.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 18, 2016, 11:02:04 AM
He gave his name in court as Freedom for Britain and Death to Traitors so I think it's pretty fair to say this was politically motivated. Not that that means he isn't still a nutter of course.
Yeah I know about the IRA attacks G, I was thinking of more recent terror attacks (well maybe not the most recent ones inspired by isis and pure fanaticism) whose perpetrators often gave the reasons as being for revenge against the Iraq invasion and other military interventions. But attacking the public for that makes no sense when you could actually target the MPs who voted in favour of these things. But of course that wouldn't do as much to alienate Muslims and make them more vulnerable to radicalization.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 18, 2016, 03:31:01 PM
What if she had been a strong supporter of Brexit and all the other opposite side stuff? Just curious.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 18, 2016, 04:43:53 PM
To answer literally: then she wouldn't be dead. There is a extreme left fringe in the UK, but I don't think it's inclined to kill people.

If the murdered MP had been campaigning for Leave, I would like to think that I would have been equally outraged - it would certainly constitute an equal attack on British democracy and values. But it's hard to say: I don't think I'm immune to the tribalism of this campaign, or politics in general, and I imagine that would affect my emotional reaction. To take an example from the US, I think I would react quite differently to news that Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders had been murdered.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 19, 2016, 12:41:57 AM
So... you would want them dead?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 19, 2016, 09:13:42 AM
No, not at all - I don't want anybody dead, politician or not. But I think I would react more strongly to news that Bernie Sanders had died than I would to news that Donald Trump had died.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 19, 2016, 10:13:32 AM
With the US presidential candidates, and possibly US high grade politicians generally, there may be more expectation of risk - that Jo Cox was an activist backbencher doing local constituency work I think makes it almost more shocking, because it's much closer to home for all political activists in the broadly left/liberal spectrum. Indeed I think it hit me so badly because she was not so dissimilar to myself - someone with very similar political concerns who went to the same college as me and was murdered for it. Which I guess is the aim, to prevent people with our sorts of views wanting to speak out.

I think for either Sanders or Trump my base reaction would be "oh crikey, what now" whereas losing Jo Cox also has a strong and very different undertone of "this person actually was quite similar to me, saying similar things to me; is this a position I could end up in one day". I guess there is also the partisan element where when you lose someone from a movement there's more impetus to take up the fight where they can't any more and achieve the things they didn't get the chance to - that's obviously not something I'd feel for a right winger, though I'd still be horrified that they'd died and want to see the killer face justice (and I would want to look carefully at whether the political situation made a difference, if someone had been shouting "kill the bourgeoisie" a lot then that might be a good time to look at whether there were violence issues on the far left say).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 21, 2016, 12:30:24 AM
And apparently the universe doesn't know when I'm talking in hypotheticals any more. Holy hell.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election-us-2016-36582770

A British man is arrested trying to shoot Donald Trump. Precise motive, political background, etc of this would-be assassin/terrorist/murderer as yet unclear.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 21, 2016, 12:37:20 AM
What the hell? No one here cares who gets elected in your country it should be vice versa. :P

(http://i1.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/787/356/d6f.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 21, 2016, 12:55:58 AM
America be like:
"Hey y'all we're #1 superpower, biggest economy, biggest army, and leaders of the free world motherportugalers"

Then America be like:
"Why do you all care who runs America and its foreign policy?"
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 21, 2016, 01:21:38 AM
Maybe Libertarian America be like that yeah. :P

In any case one person doesn't run this country and we're no threat to the good people of Britain.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 21, 2016, 11:43:08 AM
Yeah, but the President has a large amount of say in foreign policy (and in a presidential year the main race can affect the house/senate races too), and while you're not going to invade us things like your trade relations and treaties really do affect the rest of the world. If it costs more to export to the US because President Trump or President Sanders put up tariffs, that hurts businesses in the UK. Alternatively, if our trading regulations are lowered because a President Clinton managed to push through a trade deal that means we now use US standards for some products, then that could make it harder to keep our public services in state hands and might mean lower testing standards on various products.

There's a certain level of being powerful beyond which you can't help affecting people. America's big enough now that when you guys spit it rains someplace else. The rest of the world would love to not give a damn who runs the US, but that's not a luxury we have.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 21, 2016, 07:07:38 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-36563337

"Also rejected were:
A bill to ban suspects on terrorism watch lists from buying guns
A bill (backed by the NRA) that would allow the US attorney general to delay a gun purchase by a known or suspected terrorist, but prosecutors would need to convince a judge of the would-be-buyer's connection to terrorism within three days
A bill that would alert the FBI to terrorism suspects who have purchased a gun, without blocking the purchase outright"

portugaling what? All of these bills sound like basic common sense regulations. If someone's too dangerous to be allowed on a plane surely they're too dangerous to be buying guns.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 22, 2016, 12:07:35 AM
Good job Congress on upholding the constitution. Before long we'd all end up on these "watch lists" as this would give too much power to those at the top. I mean seriously, there are over 100 million Americans who own over 300 million guns, if guns were really a problem you'd know it. :P A few nutcases does not make it justifiable to take away constitutional rights in the name of "security".

Oh and before anyone says I'm just screaming 2nd amendment In actually referring to due process of law.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 22, 2016, 07:08:51 AM
Well the second bill in that list would actually require a judge to agree with the suspects links to terrorism which seems like an entirely reasonable checkpoint. And the third doesn't even block terror suspects from buying a gun.
Restricting someone's ability to fly is a much greater restriction of their rights than stopping them from buying a gun for many people.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 22, 2016, 10:52:39 PM
Jub you're basing all that on things that haven't happened and probably won't happen but wouldn't affect you personally in any way even if they did.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 22, 2016, 11:17:01 PM
CG: the specific examples that Jubal mentions might or might not happen. However, I believe it's still true that the choice of US President can have a significant effect on the UK, and the rest of the world. If Gore had been President, instead of Bush, we might well not have had the "War on Terror", or at least had it organised very differently. We would probably not have had the Second Gulf War; we might well now not be fighting a war against IS in Syria and Iraq. So Jubal's point holds: if you guys spit, we get rained on. America might or might not be "great", but it still has a big impact.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 22, 2016, 11:26:38 PM
There's a lot of ifs and maybes in there, G. Fact is Gore wasn't president and so what happened happened. Making an argument based on a hypothetically ideal situation doesn't really hold up. I guess I didn't realize you guys fought in any of those conflicts. Or did you stay in the UK living basically the same as always? Because those things happened and I really can't say my life changed in the slightest. In fact the only time a president changed my life was when Obama charged me an extra $200 on my taxes because I refused to get his mandatory life insurance.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Glaurung on June 22, 2016, 11:54:14 PM
Never mind, CG. I don't have the energy to argue this any longer. I'm going to get some sleep, if I can, and then do what I can tomorrow to try to prevent my country jumping off a cliff.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 23, 2016, 12:00:04 AM
My original point was that a British person trying to assassinate a US presidential candidate (when we're not at war with each other) is kind of ridiculous. If he'd been targeting Clinton you'd probably agree with me. I'd still feel the same. I don't want her dead I want her in prison.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 23, 2016, 12:58:41 AM
Who he was targeting is irrelevant to our point - I think G and I both find the use of political violence abhorrent regardless of whether we like the candidate, we just don't think the nationality of the attacker makes much difference or is especially absurd/surprising in this case. Would equally be nuts and abhorrent if an American tried to assassinate either of them. That also applies equally to either candidate.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 23, 2016, 01:06:24 AM
It just doesn't make any sense why he would feel threatened. If that's the only way I've been affected by a president as a citizen of this country then he's totally fine.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 24, 2016, 09:42:04 AM
He didn't do it because he feels threatened himself, he outright said he expected to die in the attempt. He obviously thought he was  doing the right thing. Like a terroreest.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on June 28, 2016, 07:46:26 PM
Labour hates corbyn! Yay! Labour aren't as bad as I thought!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 28, 2016, 08:18:45 PM
Labour look like they'll rip themselves to shreds over this.

Meanwhile my lot are struggling to keep up with the membership applications coming in!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 02, 2016, 01:08:10 AM
http://insider.foxnews.com/2016/06/30/concealed-carrier-shuts-down-active-shooter-lyman-south-carolina-nightclub

People can rag on Fox all they want but without it we would never hear about things like this.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 02, 2016, 11:50:04 PM
It would be interesting to have the actual statistics on how often this happens. And one could probably actually compile meaningful numbers for the statistics, which says quite a lot in itself. I don't doubt that armed people can help fight off other armed people especially if they're well trained, I still doubt the NRA position that having more armed people would help in many or most mass shooting situations. But anyway, there's not much point in us raking over this one again.



Meanwhile, a terrorist attack has happened in Bangladesh leaving 20 dead, thought to be done by Islamists/ISIS; though they're also feeling pressure on the ground, as apparently the US just took out two more senior commanders of theirs in Iraq with an air strike.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 03, 2016, 12:46:15 AM
I heard we got around 250 of them a week ago.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 06, 2016, 12:29:35 PM
Big news of the day is that the Chilcot report, into why the UK went to war in Iraq, is finally being published. It essentially confirms what we already knew - there were no WMDs, there was no imminent threat from Iraq, peaceful options had not been exhausted before we declared war, we didn't prepare our troops properly, and there was too much reliance on flawed intelligence information.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 06, 2016, 12:54:11 PM
Wow that's big news. Not.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 06, 2016, 01:26:56 PM
It's politically quite a big deal here; the report's been awaited for a long time, and many of the centre-right politicians who pushed for the war were hoping that it would be a lot kinder on them. Instead, it's a pretty complete official independent takedown for Blair, IDS, Cameron, and other establishment figures and a big vindication for leftists and the Lib Dems who solidly opposed the war.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 06, 2016, 10:44:48 PM
Well I guess they'll be put in prison because their name isn't Clinton.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on July 06, 2016, 11:26:20 PM
Unfortunately not, although maybe if Cornyn ends up in power they may have to face an international court (highly unlikely though).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 06, 2016, 11:35:58 PM
None of them broke UK law, Blair may have broken international law but I don't expect him to be tried any more than I'd expect Bush to be for the same thing.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on July 08, 2016, 09:13:23 AM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-36742835
portugal.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 08, 2016, 10:29:58 AM
Yeah, very grim. Looks like it was a peaceful protest got infiltrated by a fairly well organised bunch of gunmen :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 08, 2016, 01:11:30 PM
That's the black lives matter group. Rioting, looting, vandalism, and now murder. :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 08, 2016, 06:34:02 PM
Yeah, no, pretty sure that is literally completely not what happened here according to any verifiable sources whatsoever.

A bunch of cop-killers, even if doing so because of the same problems that motivate a protest group, don't represent that protest group. That's not how anything works. BLM has publicly condemned the killings and all forms of violence in protest, and the killers have stated that they had no group affiliations.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 08, 2016, 07:50:00 PM
Yuh huh. Not buying it.

BLM has been violent before. Media is just trying to protect them.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on July 09, 2016, 12:20:35 AM
I've not really followed much of this armadillo but I've heard there are plenty of crazies in the BLM movement. I'm guessing most of the protesters are sound people, and that most of the people associated with BLM are as well, but it's going to a movement that will draw alpacas along too since its so broad.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 09, 2016, 12:36:20 AM
Yeah, every movement has a crazy fringe, especially any anti-establishment movement. But the idea of a BLM/media stitchup is tinfoil hat territory. The media are possibly the only thing they get more cross about institutionally than the police.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 09, 2016, 12:48:53 AM
BLM spawned because of the Obama organization's agenda to divide the races and "get back at whitey". It and the media don't work together, so no tinfoil hats, but the media definitely takes advantage of what they do. They can sensationalize a few facts out of all the facts and make it look like blacks are being killed by police all the time in order to stir up disorder when in reality it's more like this:

(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-IrLeebhXwV4/VSlxCP_xCgI/AAAAAAAAPX8/7GnoAKa9aa4/s1600/race%2Bof%2Bthose%2Bkilled%2Bby%2Bpolice.JPG)

Obama, well his wife more than likely, want to get revenge on the white man and the media does whatever it can to make a big deal out of nothing in order to get ratings, and then dumb folk get caught up in the mess and start believing all sorts of armadillo and start hating the other race and the police and then start killing each other while the real culprits at the very top just sit back and watch.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 09, 2016, 09:18:57 AM
Specifically unarmed people killed by the state are very disproportionately black, though. Even given higher crime and deprivation rates in black communities, the relationship between those people and the police has not been good for a very long time, and heavy handed "externalised" policing styles can't help.

And most of the BLM demands are very reasonable and have worked well where enacted. If you're sending cops out with live rounds and the ability to kill, you should also be sending them out with body cameras, proper training, and clear guidelines on when they are criminally responsible, all of which have historically rarely happened. Whatever you may think of the stats on race, BLM has done a lot to push states and cops to actually get their asses in gear and no longer assume they are above the law when it comes to killing people. The FBI didn't even keep comprehensive stats on police killings until all this happened; now there's finally going to be a proper national database from 2017, largely thanks to the pressure from protests like this.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on July 09, 2016, 11:27:45 AM
BLM spawned because of the Obama organization's agenda to divide the races and "get back at whitey". It and the media don't work together, so no tinfoil hats, but the media definitely takes advantage of what they do.

Obama, well his wife more than likely, want to get revenge on the white man

What are you basing this on? Because it sounds pretty tinfoil from an outside perspective.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 09, 2016, 02:43:54 PM
Logic, intuition, and reading between the lines. Outside perspective - exactly. What you see from across the sea is information after it goes through the political/media filters. Sadly most people living here only see it that way as well. Politics and the modern media are things that were invented in our minds; illusions, but unfortunately they have the power to shine many times more brightly than the real, tangible world underneath and people therefore think that's how things really are. If you're actually here seeing and thinking and talking to real people everything looks much different. Because it's real!

Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on July 09, 2016, 06:30:33 PM
Yeah if I judged the world through what I see on the news I would think that at least 50% of the world's population were murdering, child molesting Islamist terrorists.
But how and why would Obama convince such a significant chunk of the black population that they were being discriminated against by the justice system? And why do you think his wife in particular wants revenge on white men?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 09, 2016, 07:25:33 PM
Cuz that's gangsta. Michelle is descended from slaves whereas Barack is not. He's more deeply rooted in the Muslim community.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on July 09, 2016, 07:46:32 PM
That is a joke yes?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on July 09, 2016, 08:51:38 PM
It's easier to joke than be serious and I'm tired. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Lady Grey on July 26, 2016, 02:45:19 PM
My thoughts are with those who were affected by and the family/friends of those involved in the hostage situation in a church in France which resulted in the horrific death of an 84 year old priest. I can't remember the name of the church, but I'm honestly so shocked and saddened. :(
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on August 23, 2016, 04:21:30 PM
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-37167700
Haha jezzas an absolute madman, told him to tall utter armadillo and he actually did it!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on August 24, 2016, 01:44:04 PM
Jeremy's still in the news? Still a alpaca.


You see that the union leader was saying that Virgin was 'spinning' this footage? The bear faced hypocrisy I can almost give props for....If he wasn't a alpaca as well.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on August 27, 2016, 06:39:49 PM
Yep, unfortunately his only contender for the leadership seems like a llama as well. Oh well, at least this could be good for the lib dems.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 24, 2017, 01:51:12 PM
Horrific terror attack in Manchester, very grim :( A friend of mine lost one of their friends in the blast. Apparently the usual pattern though - attacker was British and local, and known to police; I can't help feeling we need to be talking community police/service resourcing a lot more when these things happen.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 04, 2018, 08:01:28 PM

This is old news, but not to me and probably not to most of you.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-06-30/bilnd-recruitment-trial-to-improve-gender-equality-failing-study/8664888
https://www.smh.com.au/public-service/public-servants-more-likely-to-hire-women-shock-study-results-20170630-gx1pqg.html
Those are two sources on the same story.
Basically the Aussie government (and some private companies apparently) have trialled a policy to reduce discrimination in the hiring process by removing the names on cvs (and presumably any other reference to gender or ethnicity). This practice seems perfectly reasonable to me, if descrimination was there then this should cut down on it and if it's not then it shouldn't have any effect. So it should emphasise the effects of individual merits.
After already trialling this they decided to actually put it to the test, only to find that instead of having the expected effect (increasing the success of women and ethnic minorities) it actually had the opposite. So it seems to be showing discrimination against men and whites in this case. In itself I didn't find that highly remarkable (it was a small effect anyway), but the attitude of the researchers was rather telling. Instead of admitting that there is actually evidence for reverse discrimination here, they advocate to stop using this method and focus on different ways to increase diversity. Interesting.
Also, these researchers (and both these articles) claim that there is a discrimination against women when it comes to promotion to top positions, on the basis that around 60% of this workforce is female whilst only about 50% of those in executive and management positions are female. However this completely ignores that fact that the majority of the full time workforce is male, and strangely enough it is full time employees who are usually more likely to be promoted in pretty much every industry that I can think of.

Tl;dr
Get woke bitches. Or red pilled. I'm not very familiar with these phrases so I don't know which is more suitable.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 04, 2018, 08:27:31 PM
I'm offended.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 04, 2018, 08:50:41 PM
My personal experience of the term "red pilled" around the web is, in genuine honesty, that it is primarily used by bigots who are upset nobody will have sex with them to signal this fact to other bigots, so I'd rather not 'get' that...

Regarding the actual study: I think the two things go together - what the evidence tends to show is that bias for job hiring tends to go with perceptions in a particular workforce. In other words, if you're hiring a large number of people in jobs traditionally treated as "feminine" - social work, secretarial work, nursing, e.g. a lot of classic lower pay grade public sector roles - a minimal bias or a small bias towards female applicants isn't necessarily at all surprising or inconsistent with a general picture where the majority of classically male-presented jobs (which tend to have higher pay) see some bias towards male recruitment. Of course it's true that you'll also occasionally get recruiters biased in other directions; I'd generally argue that blind CVs are a good idea for precisely that reason, though I think there is a counter-argument that people from some social groups tend to have CVs that undersell their ability (for example, some parts of the US still have pretty heavy and well recorded ethnic segregation in housing and school quality). The evidence is I think pretty strong that blind CVs have been good for ethnic minorities elsewhere especially (with perhaps a less clear picture as to their effect on hiring women), which makes this case an interesting datapoint but I think one that needs to be in that context.

I think the APS is quite an unusual case to take in this place, anyway, and one from which you can't generalise - 49% women in management roles is very high compared to most private companies. In the US as a whole, for example, women make up just 23% of senior positions, despite accounting for 46% of the labour force - that's a much larger gap than you can account for by the full time/part time gap. The figures are basically the same for the UK. You might be interested in a meta-analysis of over 130 similar studies that was published in 2014, from the University of Minnesota - abstract notes as follows:
Quote
Our findings revealed that men were preferred for male-dominated jobs (i.e., gender-role congruity bias), whereas no strong preference for either gender was found for female-dominated or integrated jobs. Second, male raters exhibited greater gender-role congruity bias than did female raters for male-dominated jobs. Third, gender-role congruity bias did not consistently decrease when decision makers were provided with additional information about those they were rating, but gender-role congruity bias was reduced when information clearly indicated high competence of those being evaluated. Fourth, gender-role congruity bias did not differ between decisions that required comparisons among ratees and decisions made about individual ratees. Fifth, decision makers who were motivated to make careful decisions tended to exhibit less gender-role congruity bias for male-dominated jobs. Finally, for male-dominated jobs, experienced professionals showed smaller gender-role congruity bias than did undergraduates or working adults.
Link: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/262682077_A_Meta-Analysis_of_Gender_Stereotypes_and_Bias_in_Experimental_Simulations_of_Employment_Decision_Making

I think the evidence is clear, on the basis of studies like that, that for a significant number of jobs there is still some discrimination level against women within the hiring process - some sectors are much more integrated or already women-dominated and those will tend to have a rather different picture, which I guess highlights the need for studies of this and attempts to deal with it to be more specific to role types or based on measures like blind CVs that reduce human interactions with our own biases.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on June 05, 2018, 07:56:35 PM
I've never seen red pilled used in that context, I believe it's meant to be a matrix reference. And it was of course ironic in this case.
Anywho, as I said I don't find the actual findings of this trial particularly noteworthy (although actually the affect on certain ethnicities was actually significant but I don't know how much to read into that) but rather the reaction to it. Ignoring this as evidence of a lack of bias or even minor "reverse" bias is pretty lame, and the idea of not using this because gender or ethnic diversity is somehow more important than competency is pure retarded. I'm pretty surprised that the Aus government is apparently so invested in diversity/equity considering Turnbulls migration policies. Thought his government would be fairly right wing (and I thought the same of Aussies in general tbh).

I don't know when I'll get time to read that study but I shall try to do so soonish.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 05, 2018, 08:13:15 PM
Yes, red pill = matrix.

and the idea of not using this because gender or ethnic diversity is somehow more important than competency is pure retarded.
This.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 05, 2018, 10:55:54 PM
Yeah, I obviously know the red pill is a matrix reference - but yeah, you might want to be aware that it's also used by some quite extreme fringe groups nowadays, who use the term "redpill" to mean "waking up" from the matrix of normal society into a world which fits their ideology better, often a very extreme version of a "we should go back to a world where men are dominant and decide everything" ideal, though also I believe the term's been picked up by some nazi-fringe types now. I'm glad it's not something you've come across in that context; I have quite a bit and some of the people I've ended up arguing with as a result were... not fun, let's say. Sorry if it sounded like I was being terse about it, it's just there's some rather grim stuff out there and there are some bad associations that term is getting nowadays because of the asshole fringe types :/

I think that in general it's true that gender and ethnicity blind recruitment makes most sense (for jobs where that makes sense - obviously some jobs are more headhunting-style, and there I guess counter-bias training for recruiters might be more useful). In terms of the diversity and competency thing, obviously competency is key in hiring - however, I think there are occasionally some valid arguments (if not ones I always agree with myself) that can be made on those grounds for positive discrimination in certain types of work. I believe there's reasonable evidence that working groups with more demographic diversity tend to have improved average problem-solving skills, for example, so it may be the case, especially in a field where different perspectives are useful, that it's not irrational to put together a more diverse team. I think there's also an argument that there are jobs where it makes sense for the people doing certain types of work to reflect the communities they work in. Policing and social work, for example, rely on people being able to make on-the-ground links in local communities, and having teams that are very unreflective of their area can make it harder for some of those agencies to have an impact.

Finally, there's the glass ceiling argument; that it's worth having positive discrimination in work areas that are traditionally monocultural, because this weakens the perception of those groups as being for that gender/ethnicity/etc (and it's the perception that seems to be behind hiring bias) - in terms of competence, I think it's clearly true that in cases where a certain ethnic or gender category is put off going for certain jobs or has an inbuilt hiring bias for them, those roles/companies/etc may then be missing out on competent people as a result of their gender, so I can see the logic behind trying to redress that balance. Of course when and where these arguments make sense to apply is pretty specific, and it's true that often too blunt an approach is taken to these sorts of things, especially by companies or departments that want to look like they're doing the right thing more than they want to focus on where they have recruitment strategy issues and how to resolve them. It's not as simplistic as "people putting diversity ahead of competence", though, there are some actually complex/nuanced issues to look at with this.

Finally re Turnbull's government - I think you might find that the government of the day has comparatively little influence in overall public sector hiring practices? I dunno exactly what the scope of that was, but if that's the whole Aus public services, then it might well include a lot of areas devolved to local administration, and departments where the ministers are focussing on policy and don't have a departmental running strategy, etc. Aus is probably more like the UK in that sense, these would be areas dealt with by senior civil servants (whereas in the US the decisions tend to be more appointees of Governors/Presidents).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 05, 2018, 11:11:31 PM
I just don't think it's right either way, to hire or not hire based on anything other than a person's professional qualifications.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 05, 2018, 11:55:19 PM
That's a fair enough position, and I think demographic-blind recruitment is usually a good strategy for ensuring that happens. :)

I think all I was trying to frame with the above post is that often the arguments for positive discrimination in job hiring are just presented as being some sort of strange ideological obsession - whereas there are a number of practical and evidence-based reasons behind the idea as well, and I think it's worth bearing that in mind if only so you know what it is you're disagreeing with and why people think that. I guess my own view is that explicitly quota-ing for jobs or whatever can really easily have bad effects or backfire or feel tokenistic and so that's usually not something I'm comfortable with, but it's an area where I'm willing to hear out those arguments in any specific case. And it is more complex in some jobs (certainly it is in my field) than simply a mechanistic qualifications/experience game, because e.g. team dynamics in some jobs are really important, so good training for recruiters on how to deal with demographic issues and teamwork stuff with recruits (because the evidence suggests that most people start off with some perception-skews) is helpful I suspect.



Meanwhile, this bullarmadillo really annoys me: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-44377072

Labour claiming they want "full access" to the EU single market without actually obeying the rules of the market, because the EU would totally agree to that (they wouldn't), and then claiming this makes their Brexit idea better than the Conservatives, because what the Conservatives want is... maximum access to the EU single market without actually obeying the rules of the market. Labour's position is literally the same as that of their opponents, but with a different spin put on it. Meanwhile they're going to abstain on a vote on EEA membership, which would actually make a difference. Like, if Labour want to back the government's position on this, that's their call, I just wish they'd be honest about it and put forward actual rational proposals for how to build a trading network for Britain outside the EU, rather than claiming that their magic rocket ship to fairyland is better than Theresa May's magic rocket ship to fairyland.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on June 06, 2018, 12:07:10 AM
In turn I also think it should be legal. :o
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on July 15, 2018, 08:38:39 PM
One small bit of good news - Ethiopia & Eritrea are normalising and warming relations after many years, which is probably pretty good news for east Africa.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-44824676
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 23, 2018, 09:37:39 AM
Volkswagen may have accidentally caused a drought in Mexico by installing giant shockwave cannons around one of its manufacturing plants. Although it's also unclear whether the said cannons work or not...

https://www.ft.com/content/3b377aa8-a64d-11e8-8ecf-a7ae1beff35b
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on August 27, 2018, 05:16:50 PM
John McCain is finally dead. The fact he was still a senator even during his declining health and up until his very last breath is evidence of our broken congressional system.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on August 27, 2018, 06:40:45 PM
Yeah - especially since under Arizona rules they now don't get a by-election to fill his seat until 2020, the governor just gets to pick a senator for a 2.5 year term (if McCain resigned before June 30, there'd have been a by-election this November, after that they put it off until the next even-numbered election year which to me seems kinda crazy).
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on October 29, 2018, 12:40:02 PM
Potential maniac Bollsonaro has been elected president of Brazil. It's a bit early to say what this actually means for the country, he's been worryingly fond of the previous military junta and is pretty authoritarian to say the least, but he also apparently wants to liberalize the economy (which Brazil seriously needs) and tbf  his general stance on crime is also probably a good one for Brazil. Unfortunately he's legitimately homophobic and allegedly racist and misogynistic too (but then apparently so is pretty much everyone). Oh and he is also opposed to attempts to halt and reverse deforestation of the Amazon.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 29, 2018, 01:14:52 PM
The attitude of the few Brazilians I know is toward the 'armadillo, evacuate now' end of the spectrum, and seriously meaning it, not just the "I'm going to move to Canada" that you get from Democrats in the US every time the GOP gets in. I'm hopeful that Brazil's congress will keep something of a check on him as long as he doesn't go full military coup, they have some ridiculous number of small parties in there as of the most recent elections so he'll need to do a lot of negotiating to get anything done. I do not like his environmental and human rights tone at all.

I suspect it's a pity that Haddad got into the second round - I think someone not from the Workers' Party and from a more middle-ground opposition group would have had a good chance of beating Bolsonaro, the WP have just got super unpopular with all the corruption scandals. I'm really very sceptical that Bolsonaro will manage to clean the system up up rather than him just using such charges as an excuse to round up opponents, but we'll see.


Other news:

> Sri Lanka is having a major crisis after the president, who switched sides from the old ruling party to lead the opposition to victory, has now switched back to try and put his old ally in as Prime Minister and sack the current PM. This seems to be part of a power game between India and China - China preferred the old more authoritarian ruling party, and India prefers the opposition.
> Georgia just had the first round of its presidential election, no candidate got over 40% so the second round run-off may well be quite tight. The run-off candidates are an independent backed by the government plus the candidate of the main opposition party. Both parties are broadly centrist, the government is perhaps marginally more to the left and has a less strong anti-Russian and pro-EU stance than the opposition. The third party, the liberal-conservative European Georgia, will support the opposition in the second round, likely leading to a close race.
> Angela Merkel is quitting her job as leader of the Christian Democratic Union (but not necessarily as Chancellor of Germany) later this year. Germany has seen some boosts in support for the far right, and a much larger boost in support recently for the Green party who are taking votes off both her conservative CDU and the centre-left SPD and could even be on track to become the main second-place party after the CDU.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Caradìlis on November 01, 2018, 08:01:42 PM
Found something I have been screaming at for the last half hour and it was a bbc news article, so I'll put it here, feel free to move it, if it doesn't fit...

https://bbc.in/2QfUmbO

Can somebody please explain to me, why it's apparently funny to some people to joke about hounding any sort of people up and killing/torturing them or forcing them to go against their beliefs/principles? Just because being vegan or vegetarian is a choice shouldn't mean it's okay to just discriminate against them,  right? I'm sorry, maybe it's just because I grew up in central Europe post 1945, but to me any suggestion of killing of part of the demographic for their beliefs always has a certain undertone and never sounds like a joke...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on November 03, 2018, 02:31:48 PM
As a former vegan nothing seemed particularly offensive or funny about the joke to me - although tbf jokes related by news articles do tend to lose all of their humour anyway. I can't say why jokes about dark subjects are funny to me but they certainly can be. Note that simply making a joke about a dark subject matter is not usually funny on its own for me though, as is the case here. I think when it comes to making this kind of joke about vegans it's quite clearly a joke - there are very few people who would take it seriously.
As to him being fired or pushed to resign over this, it seems fair enough. He's not a comedian and responding to a sincere pitch with a dismissive joke is highly unprofessional regardless of whether the joke is offensive or not. Then when you do add in the potential offense it probably makes financial sense for Waitrose to replAce the guy.


Can I ask why this story bothered you so much? The dude apologised and resigned, it doesn't seem like much of a story to me at all.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Caradìlis on November 03, 2018, 02:55:24 PM
I don't know why I got so upset about it, I guess, I've heard "jokes" like this a billion times too many and I just don't understand how people can get so angry about other people choosing not to eat meat, I mean, a) more for them, and b) stop pretending non-meat-eaters are trying to convert everyone... I've never seen a vegan or a vegetarian forcing their morals down somebody elses throat, but I have myself been confronted with people who wanted to force me to give up my principles, so I'm just curious as to how these sorts of behaviour and comments come about...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on November 03, 2018, 03:15:15 PM
I've always assumed that was either a form of projection or based on the assumption that vegans\veggies must be making some claim to a moral high ground. It kind of makes sense, someone choosing to reject your lifestyle on moral grounds is a challenge to your own morality even if it's not meant to be. And people quite often react instinctively to such challenges. Actually people apparently react instinctively to such things the vast majority of the time. People are weird.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Caradìlis on November 03, 2018, 03:28:30 PM
They sure are...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 05, 2018, 11:43:43 PM
RIP HW

"When the history books are written, they will say that George HW Bush was a great president of the United States - a diplomat of unmatched skill, a commander-in-chief of formidable accomplishment, and a gentleman who executed the duties of his office with dignity and honour."
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on December 05, 2018, 11:54:11 PM
There was an amusing story going around about how he banned broccoli from Air Force One when he took office - basically saying that his mother had forced him to eat it for years and that now he was the president he felt he was finally capable of refusing the stuff. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on December 05, 2018, 11:57:10 PM
Sounds like something my dad would do. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 09, 2019, 12:30:09 AM
So France is rioting and apparently the media outlets aren't reporting the real story? Are they and our governments trying to keep us from getting any ideas?

https://www.wibc.com/blogs/tony-katz/morning-news/riots-france-reveal-greater-truth-about-governments-and-ideologues
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 09, 2019, 04:10:14 PM
Tbh what I'm hearing from regular and "alt" media all tallies fairly well? The thing with the Gilets Jaunes is that reporting often seems very confusing but that's in no small part because they're not a coherent movement - some of them are vehemently anti-tax, some are protesting against reduction of state benefits/subsidies, some are generally trying to bring down "the system" but those then split into those who want to replace it with everything from fascism to communism to anarchism... Basically Macron has proven to be a pretty crappy managerial centre-right leader who doesn't have much ability to connect with people, and this plus the general volatility of French politics is the result. The actual demands of the protesters include both "less tax" and "more benefits/services" so I think it's hard to label where it all sits politically. I think it's a serious mistake for him to be trying to go all "law and order" and crack down on these guys with law enforcement though, which he seems to be now turning to - I think that'll just escalate things.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Caradìlis on January 09, 2019, 07:52:30 PM
I'm pretty sure things have already "escalated"...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 10, 2019, 02:15:17 PM
I feel like the French have pretty high standards for escalation - there's a reason they're on their fifth republican governmental system already :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 10, 2019, 03:24:32 PM
The land of revolution!

They gave us the idea but we pretty much got it right the first time. ;D
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Caradìlis on January 10, 2019, 11:03:36 PM
Yeah, because things are going reeeaaally smoothly over where you are...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 11, 2019, 12:18:03 PM
I mean there's squabbling inside of the government, but that's their job. Outside of it everyone is doing quite well. Don't let the media fool you. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 18, 2019, 01:02:53 PM
Update: both the UK and US governments continue to argue dysfunctionally, to the surprise of nobody.

^ I should just set up a bot to post this regularly, really. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 21, 2019, 09:41:35 PM
Doesn't really seem like news tbh. !maybe if the opposite happened you could post it here before we all fly off on unicorns to a rainbows end. :( pessimism
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Caradìlis on January 21, 2019, 09:56:03 PM
Pessimism or realism?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 21, 2019, 10:03:42 PM
The pessimist, of course, would insist there isn't a difference!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 22, 2019, 06:58:29 AM
Yeah I'm a cheery boy. In other news though, I have decided not to ever take any news report I see at face value ever again:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CY-vU5d__aQ
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 25, 2019, 04:04:55 PM
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-47002865

A rare bit of moderately positive news - North Macedonia (as we can now call it) and Greece have finally settled a (slightly absurd) near thirty year dispute over the name of Macedonia, which Greece objected to because Macedonia is also the name of a province of northern Greece. some Greek nationalists believe that Macedonia now can't be called such because the name belongs to Greeks, and some Macedonian nationalists literally believe that Greek Macedonia should be owned by Macedonia. Anyway, there's finally a deal been made on the issue - it's not popular in either country, but it changes Macedonia to be called North Macedonia permanently, and Greece in turn will stop faffing around preventing the Macedonians from taking part in international institutions properly.

Anyway, at least in my view deciding to not let nationalists faff around endlessly over names and instead just get on with life feels like a good thing.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on January 25, 2019, 08:21:36 PM
Nice
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 25, 2019, 08:23:58 PM
Have to admit it is silly for those folks up there to use the name Macedonia.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 25, 2019, 08:39:15 PM
Eh, that area was first included in Macedonia in Roman times at the latest, even if the Macedonian national identity is a pretty new one (though it's over a century old itself now). I guess I tend to see these things as kind of arbitrary and changeable anyhow - so to the extent that is silly, objecting to it on the grounds that "we own that name" is also pretty silly, and I'm glad the countries' governments have come up with an actual solution.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 25, 2019, 09:49:05 PM
Your opinion is noted. :P

(https://cdn.dopl3r.com/memes_files/alexander-the-areat-alexander-the-ok-alexander-the-absolutely-terrible-please-stop-n9KQC.jpg)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Caradìlis on January 25, 2019, 10:59:01 PM
Alexander the Meh...
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on January 29, 2019, 11:27:46 PM
In today's news, the UK parliament voted for a solution to the Brexit deal.

The solution involves mechanisms that don't exist, had been ruled out by the EU before they voted on it, and was ruled out again by the EU within five minutes of them passing it.

They also voted to rule out leaving with no deal. Except that you can't legally do that without an alternative. Which they haven't got and can't agree on. So they can't actually do the thing they voted to do.

My reaction:
:pangolin:
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on January 30, 2019, 12:37:31 AM
Return the land to the Welsh!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 20, 2019, 12:00:37 AM
From the UK, there is no news, nobody knows what to do ans everything is a mess. The latest farce is that the government plan of "force them to back our deal by running the clock down" has been blocked by the Speaker because after something gets rejected in two of the four largest Parliament defeats on record trying again is taking the piss a bit.

We have literally ten days left to go and nobody even knows what options we have.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 20, 2019, 01:19:51 AM
Hooray!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 21, 2019, 12:01:38 PM
I just want them to revoke Article 50 and stop the whole stupid thing at this point. I've very much in the last few years gone from "oh that was bad, I hope we find a compromise" to "this is clearly a mess, let's look for a way to get a democratic mandate to halt it" to "JUST MAKE IT STOP FOR PORTUGALS SAKE".
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Tusky on March 21, 2019, 12:06:44 PM
Same here, although I can't see how it can
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 21, 2019, 12:38:49 PM
No, indeed, realistically I have no idea of a way out of this. Which in turn disincentivises me from taking anything but the position I actually want - if there's no route to compromise, there's no point in me trying to adopt a compromising stance.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 21, 2019, 01:01:53 PM
No choice now but to open fire on Fort Sumpter. It's revolution, bitchez!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 22, 2019, 07:02:46 AM
Make the colonies colonies again!!!!
It seems like we be portugaled lads but we'll just have to wait and see. Which is getting tiresome. Hopefully the impending apocalypse will a bit more entertaining than all this bollocks.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 22, 2019, 02:38:44 PM
On the colonies front, it is kinda historical poetic justice that for the first time in history, a major negotiation involving Ireland and the UK is happening where the boot is entirely on the Irish foot. One of the big, early delusions on the Brexit side was that the EU would value German car exports enough that they'd ditch the needs of Ireland and its border issues. A topic on which they have been very, very wrong indeed.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 22, 2019, 03:30:48 PM
Yeah those plantations really backfired on us. Tbh I'm not sure the border issue would be such an issue if Old Mother Theresa hadn't been relying on the DUP, would having regulatory de-alignment between mainland UK and NI have been a big problem otherwise?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Clockwork on March 22, 2019, 06:22:01 PM
It's a fantastic cluster-portugal demonstrating the need for a different political system. It's also not apparent what happens if we just brexit the hell out and leave south ireland to irle.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 23, 2019, 12:35:52 AM
@Pent: De-alignment between GB and NI might have been do-able if not for the DUP and Tory right wing, that's true. I think the ERG would've blocked it even if the DUP hadn't, though, so it would have required something much more cross-party, and that's been a basic problem throughout in terms of producing a deal that people could accept.

@Clockwork: Agreed on this showing huge systemic issues. One of the reasons the EU is so baffled by this is that most EU countries have systems that are much more multi-party and consensus driven and used to hammering out deals across the internal political class: the fact in the UK that Labour and the Tories have very, very similar Brexit policies but simply won't agree between themselves for political reasons is bizarre to, for example, Austrians for whom a Socialist-Conservative government is their usual style of governing coalition.

As to what happens if we just crash out - I agree it's unclear, but "a mess in which we come off a lot worse than the EU" seems a pretty good general starting bet. They're better prepared for it and less exposed to the results than the UK is. Like, I think a world in which the UK had super effectively carefully prepared for No Deal and could use that as leverage maaaaay exist in an alternate timeline, but for better or worse that's not the one we're living in. We literally had our government nearly give an emergency No Deal shipping contract to a company with no boats (https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/feb/09/government-cancels-brexit-ferry-contract-with-no-ship-firm). You go to Brexit negotiations with the government you have, alas, not the one you'd like to have.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 23, 2019, 09:16:32 AM
@CG: Attaboy. :)
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 24, 2019, 01:18:59 AM
From what I gather our current no deal "plan" is to fall back on WTO terms but using the exact same tariffs and quotas as we have at the moment as a member state. So in the short term at least we'd see literally no benefit to being out of the EU in terms of that sweet sweet free trade. What's the point bruvs. Go hard or go home.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 29, 2019, 04:43:23 PM
The "fall back on WTO terms" thing is really misleading. We can rejoin the WTO and apply for exactly our share of the EU's quotas, but there's no reason to assume we'll get them. The WTO has 164 members who we'll need to negotiate with over that. And, uh, about our negotiating skills...

Meanwhile, the withdrawal agreement has lost another parliamentary vote. Third time it's been defeated. The Prime Minister is currently waving its corpse around like a puppet trying to pretend it isn't dead.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 29, 2019, 08:28:16 PM
No we don't need to negotiate with every wto member over certifying our WTO schedule, every nation can choose to trade on our schedule if it remains uncertified. The EU has not certified its schedule since 2004 apparently, despite making many changes to it since then.
Pretty sure we ain't ever gonna give EU up.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on March 29, 2019, 11:16:15 PM
Also on this front, Vote Leave have dropped their appeal to the electoral commission and thereby formally admitted that they broke the law during the referendum campaign:

https://twitter.com/ElectoralCommUK/status/1111682932979232768
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on March 29, 2019, 11:42:42 PM
Also the collusion delusion is over.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on March 30, 2019, 08:24:26 PM
You mean there's actually no evidence that the independently wealthy billionaire was in the pocket of a foreign nation? Madness.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 10, 2019, 10:34:42 PM
Netanyahu wins another term in Israel for his hard right coalition. He promised in the campaign to formally annex Israeli West Bank settlements, which could become a big new conflict flashpoint if it happens. Bit worrying.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on April 12, 2019, 08:43:50 PM
Sleazy Swedish man has apparently been arrested at last.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 12, 2019, 09:01:03 PM
He's Australian - Sweden was where the rape allegations were from, but it's not his home country.

Also, we're now not Brexiting probably until October, so at least I'm unlikely to get chucked out of Germany during my stay here.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on April 14, 2019, 06:50:06 PM
Should have known he was descended from convicts. Deffo guilty.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: comrade_general on April 15, 2019, 12:14:17 AM
Agreed. :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on April 16, 2019, 11:17:23 PM
In other news, Ukraine had one of the odder presidential election debates of recent years, in which one candidate didn't show up.
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-47925330

The guy who didn't show up is probably going to win, incidentally :P
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Pentagathus on May 26, 2019, 10:34:07 AM
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-48320983
Good news for you Joobs?
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on May 26, 2019, 11:32:05 AM
Seems likely, yes :) Though it's really hard to know what it might mean for what the next government will look like - I expect the OVP (the Chancellor's conservatives) will gain a lot at the expense of the FPO (who just had the corruption scandal), but it'll be hard for them to gain so much that they can govern with just one minor party in support, and now the FPO and social democrat SPO both really hate Chancellor Kurz. So who knows?

Seeing the European election results from Austria today will be the first indication of how badly this has hurt the FPO, I think. It could be very bad for them - Strache was very, very important to them and all their campaigns for years have been pretty much just fronted by him - but also their new leader is quite well known because he ran for President and nearly won, so it may be that it won't be as damaging as we might expect.
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on June 24, 2019, 09:41:01 AM
Secularists finally won something in Turkey! Specifically, the mayoralty of Istanbul:

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-48739256

Erdogan, the religious-conservative President, is probably now regretting his famous utterance that whoever controls Istanbul controls Turkey :)



Also, Georgia has been blowing up recently a bit (not literally fortunately) because some idiot decided to allow a visiting Russian MP to address parliament from the speaker's chair. In Russian. Given Russia de facto occupies 20% of Georgia via two separatist regions (it's hard to know how separatist they really are because they're a bit full of Russian troops, much like Crimea/Donbass but they've been doing it for longer)... it's not hard to see how this upset people a lot. There've been several days of protests, the parliamentary speaker has resigned, the billionaire oligarch who runs the government has now agreed that next year's elections will be fully proportional for the first time as well.



And the Czech Republic has faced the largest protests since the fall of Communism, over major corruption scandals surrounding their ruling party ANO (which are centrist-populists - their main opponents are a conservative party and, amusingly, the pirate party who are now the largest progressive force in the country).


It's a bit busy out there in the world!
Title: Re: In the News
Post by: Jubal on October 14, 2019, 09:26:52 PM
Some interesting stuff from Europe, particularly the EU's two most authoritarian countries:

In Poland, the ruling Law and Justice party, which basically holds the eastern half of the country tightly through a mix of hard-line social conservatism and big social welfare projects, has been re-elected with a slightly increased majority in the parliament - but has lost control of the Senate, with the left wing parties returning to a more functional position and the main centrist/fiscal conservative opposition solidifying its position though not advancing. It remains to be seen if this will slow or accelerate the Law and Justice attempts to "reform" the judiciary by bringing it more under governmental appointment control.

Meanwhile in Hungary, local elections provided an unexpected setback for its near-dictatorial leader Viktor Orban, who lost control of the capital city to a left-liberal opponent, with a unified opposition ranging from the traditional left and the Greens, to the liberal Momentum party, to Jobbik (who were formerly Hungary's most extreme neo-fascist party, but have tentatively moved towards a more typically national-conservative position and cut ties with some former far right allies as Orban has blocked out all the space on the extreme right of politics). Jobbik gained some mayoralties in other cities. The problem for the opposition is that their headway in cities relies on people there having access to media other than the wildly pro-Orban state broadcasters. In rural areas, this doesn't exist enough, and so Orban maintains massive support there with a completely broken skewed media environment. Nonetheless, Budapest changing hands might yet act as a catalyst for wider changes.



Meanwhile in the Middle-east, Turkey's invasion of Rojava continues and the US pullout has forced the Rojavans to do a deal with the Russian-aligned Syrian government, which seems like the sort of thing that may end badly for everyone involved... far too little international action, still.