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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

Rakarra Re:Fallacy (855 comments)

Do we really need a moral code much more elaborate than "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one"?

We probably do. Sometimes the needs of the few, or the one have to be respected. The needs of white men outweighed the needs of the black slaves in the US, did they not?

2 days ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

Rakarra Re:No, no. Let's not go there. Please. (855 comments)

I'm trying real hard here not to give you a negative mod. You have been subjected to far too much paranoid Christian antiatheist propaganda. There is no atheist conspiracy. We're not meeting in dark rooms swapping atheist literature and planning to undermine Christianity.

You're dead wrong, they usually have their meetings in the same space but just after the gay folk who gather to discuss the next items on the Homosexual Agenda and how best to convert school kids to homosexuality.

2 days ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

Rakarra Re:No, no. Let's not go there. Please. (855 comments)

There's no dogma, no book, no set of "therefore we believe these here other thingamajigs", nothing.

Like hell there isn't! To belong to any atheist community, you need to align with their dogma, have read and agree with their favorite authors, and "other thingamajigs" or you'll be ousted as a troll or worse.

This is pretty much true of any "society" on the Internet. I've come to suspect that it's generally true of any large group of people who come together with a common moral purpose.

But I've never known "atheist societies." I've known atheists, but none of them have ever been a part of any atheist society or atheist social circle. The people who DO tend to group up like that are fairly few, but their groupings make them far more visible than they would be otherwise.

2 days ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

Rakarra Re: illogical captain (855 comments)

When a relative dies, christians (etc.) cry

Pretty much because they're crying for themselves as much as for anyone else.

2 days ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

Rakarra Re:illogical captain (855 comments)

Actually the "god" question ("no god" is not a question, it is the default) is a question very much subject to science, and science has provided a few pretty good insights into it.

Oh? Why can't "god" be the default? That's awfully convenient that you get to choose that particular reference point, isn't it?

2 days ago
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Why Atheists Need Captain Kirk

Rakarra Re:illogical captain (855 comments)

A good person will do good; a bad person may do good if the carrot (heaven), or stick (hell), is strong enough to deter them from acting bad.... but that doesn't make them a good person, it simply makes them less likely to suffer the stick in life for acting their nature.

It may not make them a good person, but it also means they might be less likely to apply the stick to others.

2 days ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Rakarra Re:One bad apple spoils the barrel (1134 comments)

I remember that Ultima 6 had prostitutes. Oh, wait, it was one male and one female one. Does that still count?

Were they gargoyles?
I honestly don't remember too much about that one except it had a lot of gargoyles in it.

3 days ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Rakarra Re:I predict (1134 comments)

The creepiest bit is that half of my social circle, roughly, are male geeks* and they generally seem like a decent bunch, individually and in groups. My students are an amiable bunch, even in those final crunch days as they're trying to wrap up an experiment or get a paper in. Is the first wave of /. comments overwhelmingly from bitter seventeen year olds? Are these some other geeks who I have managed to distance myself from over the years.** Is it possible that some of the entertaining, amiable geeks that I spar with, party with, code with and blow things up with turn feral and run in packs when I'm not around? Eesh.

Hey, even violentacrez, the king troll of reddit, seemed like a decent guy in real life. The problem is as Penny Arcade pointed out years ago: Internet + Anonymity = Total fuckwad.

4 days ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Rakarra Re:"Death to Gamers and Long Live Videogames" (1134 comments)

Was this screen-shot taken exactly 12 seconds after the last tweet, or do we see that a number of them persist beyond that last referenced date? If the latter, then it's just a screen capture taken in the middle and the timestamps mean nothing. If the former... well that IS quite a suspicious coincidence, isn't it?

The "perfect spelling, capitalization, punctuation" charge is ridiculous. Many of us aren't so brain-fried by online communications methods that we can't quickly dash off sentences with valid spelling, capitalization, and punctuation. Hell, it's not even that impressive a skill, or have standards fallen so low that someone who can type out a well-written sentence in 15 seconds is thought to have committed some sort of supernatural feat? The "this was clearly scripted before being written down" charge does not hold water.

4 days ago
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Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Rakarra Re:Feminism (1134 comments)

One person's insight is another's bias.

4 days ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

Rakarra Re:The fantasy of the "rogue" that was right. (762 comments)

The vast majority of meteorologist are directly or indirectly on government payrolls

Disregarding the "meteorologist" nonsense, here we come to the real crux of the problem: the unshakable, infallible belief that all the people who work for any government organization is evil, corrupt, bought, or just lazy. It's just as bad as the far-left-wing belief in the same for corporate workers. Those attitudes are way too prevalent, and we struggle with this stupidity every day.

4 days ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

Rakarra Re:Crichton is an idiot. (762 comments)

There's nothing wrong with challenging consensus and proving it wrong. However, at that point the burden of proof is on the accuser, and until the consensus is actually proven wrong, the rest of the world can go about their business with the assumption that it's right.

4 days ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

Rakarra Re:Crichton is an idiot. (762 comments)

Oh yes, the old "everyone involved in the field is a part of a hive-mind deceiving you, their entire professional life is lie" argument.

Really, it's pretty close to the "pharmaceudical companies discovered a cure for cancer," "9/11 was an inside job," and "the moon landing was a hoax" conspiracy theories.

4 days ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

Rakarra Re:Scientific Consensus (762 comments)

Unless you're running your own experiments constantly on just about every topic, you're always going to have to a certain amount of faith that the people you're listening to know what they're talking about. I'm just not sure there's any way around that.

But 'challenge' should be seen as healthy anyway.

4 days ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

Rakarra Re:Science creates understanding of a real world. (762 comments)

When you have millions of people talking about a problem, yes, some of them are going to be morons and lunatics. Of course the statement "no one says that global warming deniers should be jailed for their beliefs" is false. It's not even worth debating, and I haven't seen anyone make that claim. Now the statement, "jailing AGW skeptics is a common refrain" is something I'd argue against. But it's a different assertion.

5 days ago
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How Scientific Consensus Has Gotten a Bad Reputation

Rakarra Re:Science creates understanding of a real world. (762 comments)

Conservapedia's [conservapedia.com] owner cum dictator, Andy Schafly comes to mind as a frequent abuser

I just swung by to see what nonsense might be there at the moment. I think my favorite on their news board is about the recent Napa, California earthquake. It states that "atheistic science" cannot explain why the earthquake occurred because there weren't any faults there, and people were so convinced there were no tectonic faults (because the scientists told them so) that 94% didn't bother with earthquake insurance.

It is wrong on so many humorous levels. The "no faults there" is flat-out incorrect, there are no -surface- faults which is normally how faults are charted, but there are underground faults. Also, earthquakes are common enough in California that earthquake insurance is prohibitively expensive -- so expensive that very few people can afford it. So the situation is exactly the opposite from what Conservapedia claims. People aren't buying the insurance because they believed false earthquake science told them there was no risk. They aren't buying it because everyone knows it's high risk, and that makes insurance expensive.

Good Lord.

5 days ago
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UN Study Shows Record-High Increases For Atmospheric CO2 In 2013

Rakarra Re:But he DOES know better than you do! Duh. (427 comments)

Of course, there's always the danger that you'll be convinced, like Nobel laureate Muller, after looking at all that publicly available data.

So be careful. You might end up knowing better than you do now, if you bother.

That's pretty unusual.

Fixed that for me. :-/

about a week ago
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UN Study Shows Record-High Increases For Atmospheric CO2 In 2013

Rakarra Re:But he DOES know better than you do! Duh. (427 comments)

Of course, there's always the danger that you'll be convinced, like Nobel laureate Muller, after looking at all that publicly available data.

So be careful. You might end up knowing better than you do now, if you bother.

That's pretty usual. It takes a rare individual who can be convinced even by plain facts that he is wrong. Usually he can weasel his way out, like moving the goalposts, or the weird ways in the data is attacked in this very thread. There will always be an excuse for why the other side is always the incorrect one, and as I get older I've come to believe that it's the majority of people who are like this, not just hoax-believers and conspiracy theorists.

about a week ago
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UN Study Shows Record-High Increases For Atmospheric CO2 In 2013

Rakarra Re:Talking Point (427 comments)

GP says that science is literally as political as politics and is closely comparable to a religion, remains unchallenged at +5.

Are you sure? Looks like it's at +0,Troll to me.
You should never complain about moderation until the comments are at least half a day old anyway. It fluctuates way too wildly in the early hours to draw conclusions.

about a week ago

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