Talk:Contras

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Malicious distortions[edit]

I removed the quote The United States did not want to control Nicaragua or the other nations in the region, but it also did not want to allow [economic] developments to get out of control. It wanted Nicaraguans to act independently, except when doing so would affect U.S. interests adversely since it was deliberately twisted by using brackets ([economic]) to change it's meaning. Even if that was the correct meaning, the quote was from a Carter administration official and is thus irrelevant.

Regarding Oxfam, I read through the entire piece and nowhere did it suggest any particular motive for United States policy. The use of Oxfam is thus another distortion.

Regarding the strategy involved the whole point of the Contra mission was to force the Sandinistas to make diplomatic and political concessions during various negotiations that took place in the 1980s. Forcing them to divert resources was part of that strategy, as has been noted. It was not and end in and of itself.

CJK (talk) 14:36, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

This is the reason I wrote out the background section this way:

From the outset, the Sandinistas had begun transitioning to a "mixed economy" that they said was based on development being governed by the "logic of the majority".[1] In the early 1980s, the World Bank privately noted that their projects were "extraordinarily successful in some sectors, better than anywhere else in the world".[2] The Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) similarly observed in 1983 that Nicaragua was "laying a solid foundation for long-term socio-economic development". As a result, Nicaragua's social reforms were deemed as a "threat of a good example" by the United States. The phrase was coined as the title of a report on Nicaragua by the charitable development agency Oxfam, which observed that "from Oxfam's experience of working in seventy-six developing countries, Nicaragua was to prove exceptional in the strength of that Government's commitment...to improving the condition of the people and encouraging their active participation in the development process".[3] This noted progress was the basis for Washington to regard the Nicaraguan model as a destabilizing influence for the entire region. Secretary of State George Shultz warned, in March 1986, that if the Sandinistas "succeed in consolidating their power," then "all the countries in Latin America, who all face serious internal economic problems, will see radical forces emboldened to exploit these problems".[4] "Nicaragua is the cancer, and we must cut it out," he said.[5] Shultz described the cancer as an "alien ideology".[6]

General John Galvin, leader of U.S. Southern Command, said the threat from Nicaragua was "ideological subversion", which would spread throughout Central America and beyond.[7] There was also concern that Nicaragua could cause political instability for it's neighbors by training radical union and peasant leaders.[8] From 1983-1987, the U.S. military tried to deter social reform in Nicaragua by conducting routine "shows of force" maneuvers in neighboring Honduras and the Caribbean.[9] In 1987, the Honduran president's chief of staff complained there wasn't a wall that could stop the "virus" from encouraging left-wing populism across borders. But "things could be worse", observed Wall Street Journal correspondent, Clifford Krauss. "Fortunately for the neighbors", the political left in Central America were on the decline since the early 1980's.[10][11] By 1985, the death squads in Guatemala and El Salvador had wiped out the trade unions and "popular" organizations that emerged in the late 1970's and early 80's.[12] To that end, the United States became content with trying to stop the "cancer" from spreading by forcing the Sandinistas to divert scarce resources to the military and away from social programs.[13][14][15]

And by the way, the TITLE of Oxfam's book is "Nicaragua: the threat of a good example?"--Boba Fett TBH (talk) 18:21, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

You ignored my point about the Carter official quote being maliciously distorted. I take it you are not contesting that?

Nah, I already said it's "absolutely false". Read inside the book and you explain what you think he's talking about. Don't be throwing words around like "maliciously". You're deletions of solidly sourced reports are questionable at best. All you have to do is read the citations. It's right there displayed for you.--Boba Fett TBH (talk) 04:06, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

As for the Oxfam book, I informed you that I read it and it didn't substantiate your distortion of it. As is self-evident from any plain reading, the title is a rhetorical question. The contents of it do not attribute any particular motivation on the part of the U.S.
Regarding the precise purpose of the Contras, the Reagan administration repeatedly justified it on the grounds that Nicaragua supported the El Salvadoran rebels. This is mentioned in virtually all accounts of the war and it seems strange that you are unaware of such a basic fact. The document that Nicaragua provided to the World Court stated that the purpose of U.S. policy was to coerce and overthrow the Nicaraguan government. [1] I'd be interested to know why you think you have a better understanding of the stated U.S. goals than both the Reagan administration and the Sandinistas.
CJK (talk) 22:57, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

Again I provided solid reports showing that the administration became satisfied with just wrecking the economy to teach others that social reform will not be tolerated. It's all their within this edit page. I'm sure you're familiar with the free trade agenda and all that. That's what this is related to, pre-free trade agreement. Why would the administration care if Nicaragua was supporting the Salvadoran rebels? Because they didn't want the rebels to win. Why? They were fighting against a terror state and the overall leader chosen by the members was hostile to the Soviet Union and Cuba. Well, the answer is obvious. They were also hostile to the "Washington Consensus". They would not accept free trade programs which has very little to do with trade and more to do with "locking in" pro market reforms. Nicaragua and Salvador don't have any vital raw materials but the threat is that the domino could eventually make it's way to countries with vast resources such as Venezuela and the whole system could unravel.

But I'm not going to push for changes here anymore. The subject of the page is too limited for all this.--Boba Fett TBH (talk) 04:06, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

There, I worded it better. I'll use it later for something else.--Boba Fett TBH (talk) 06:18, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

I reverted to an earlier version of this page since I think we should all take some time and a deep breath before this turns into an edit war... I'd like to emphasize 2 things: 1.) It's not ok to just delete sourced material without discussion, so please refrain from doing so. We can discuss everything and we will find a rational and fair solution, but that probably will require us to go through all points of conflict on by one 2.) In order to have a fruitful discussion, please refrain from ad hominem attacks and rather stick to text issues. Please don't assume bad faith in other editors. Most conflicts in this article circle around what can be regarded as reliable and non-POV sources, and that's something we will be able to sort out. Cheers, --Mallexikon (talk) 03:34, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

Read inside the book and you explain what you think he's talking about.

I did, and the context is even worse than I originally thought. He was talking about the occupation back in the 1920s. It has nothing to do with the Contras or Sandinista policies, and your contention to the contrary is immensely deceitful.

Again I provided solid reports showing that the administration became satisfied with just wrecking the economy to teach others that social reform will not be tolerated.

Your "solid report" was an Oxfam book which I pointed out to you said no such thing. You have yet to respond.

Well, the answer is obvious. They were also hostile to the "Washington Consensus". They would not accept free trade programs which has very little to do with trade and more to do with "locking in" pro market reforms. Nicaragua and Salvador don't have any vital raw materials but the threat is that the domino could eventually make it's way to countries with vast resources such as Venezuela and the whole system could unravel.

What is "obvious" to you is backed up by approximately zero evidence on your part. I have informed you what both the Reagan administration and the Sandinistas had to say about U.S. policy. You felt free to ignore it, which either shows you have done little to no research on this conflict (outside of fraudulent wannabe historians like Chomsky) or you are merely interested in pushing your own original research.

CJK (talk) 15:47, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

You said, "I did, and the context is even worse than I originally thought. He was talking about the occupation back in the 1920s."

Hmm. You're right about that. I'll remove it myself. Still though, it adds historical context.--Boba Fett TBH (talk) 18:28, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

I'd like a response to my two other points, which are equally in need of revision:
  • The false interpretation you advanced regarding the Oxfam book. As is self-evident from reading it, it nowhere at any point supports your statement As a result, Nicaragua's social reforms were deemed as a "threat of a good example" by the United States. That is a nonsensical falsehood you just made up yourself (or plagiarized from Chomsky & co., who also routinely abuse their sources like that).
  • You know (or ought to know) very well that the Reagan administration justified its policies by claiming they were blocking a possible Communist takeover of Central America. Whether or not you agree with that, you certainly have no right to falsely claim that the stated policy was to stop the "cancer" from spreading by forcing the Sandinistas to divert scarce resources to the military and away from social programs. The quotes around "cancer" would seem to indicate that it came from an administration official but this does not appear in any of your three citations. It is just another libelous statement you made up (or stole from Chomsky). Furthermore, Nicaragua's own 1985 statement to the World Court explicitly and repeatedly said the goal of U.S. policy was to coerce and overthrow the Nicaraguan government, not to remain "content" with resource diversion.
  • Yet another falsehood on your part is From 1983-1987, the U.S. military tried to deter social reform in Nicaragua by conducting routine "shows of force" maneuvers in neighboring Honduras and the Caribbean. That is not in the article you cited.
  • "Fortunately for the neighbors", the political left in Central America were on the decline since the early 1980's The quoted statement concerned "leftist groups" (i.e. armed insurgencies) not the "political left".
CJK (talk) 00:14, 17 September 2013 (UTC)
CJK, we're all reasonable people here - I think Boba just proved it -, so let's maybe change the tone a little, can we? Sentences like "That is a nonsensical falsehood you just made up yourself" or "It is just another libelous statement you made up (or stole from Chomsky)" are incivil and just not helpful in a discussion. Regarding the points you raised:
  • The Oxfam sentence in our article now reads: "On the other hand, as for example Oxfam suspected, the US government saw "the threat of a good example"..." I don't see how that can be a false interpretation of their book; they refer to the book's title already in the introduction: "...President Reagan declared a total embargo on trade with Nicaragua, on the grounds that this small and poor Central American country constituted a "threat to (US) national security".
  • The sentence in the article now says "...the US government planned to use the contras as a means to force the Sandinista government to divert scarce resources to the military and away from social and economic programs" and is reliably sourced
  • "From 1983-1987, the U.S. military tried to deter social reform in Nicaragua by conducting routine "shows of force" maneuvers in neighboring Honduras and the Caribbean" is a sentence I can't find in our article. Are you referring to an earlier version?
  • "Fortunately for the neighbors", the political left in Central America were on the decline since the early 1980's" is not in our article any more. The source now supports this sentence: "US officials warned that Nicaragua could actively export leftist ideology by training radical union and peasant leaders of its neighboring countries".
Cheers, --Mallexikon (talk) 03:24, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

The sentence On the other hand, as for example Oxfam suspected, the US government saw "the threat of a good example is also a blatant falsehood, because nowhere in the book does Oxfam claim such motivation.

...President Reagan declared a total embargo on trade with Nicaragua, on the grounds that this small and poor Central American country constituted a threat to (US) national security. That is true, a historical fact which has nothing to do with the false interpretation advanced. His statement on the May 1985 embargo said:

I have authorized these steps in response to the emergency situation created by the Nicaraguan Government's aggressive activities in Central America. Nicaragua's continuing efforts to subvert its neighbors, its rapid and destabilizing military buildup, its close military and security ties to Cuba and the Soviet Union and its imposition of Communist totalitarian internal rule have been described fully in the past several weeks. The current visit by Nicaraguan President Ortega to Moscow underscores this disturbing trend. The recent rejection by Nicaragua of my peace initiative, viewed in the light of the constantly rising pressure that Nicaragua's military buildup places on the democratic nations of the region, makes clear the urgent threat that Nicaragua's activities represent to the security of the region and, therefore, to the security and foreign policy of the United States. The activities of Nicaragua, supported by the Soviet Union and its allies, are incompatible with normal commercial relations. [2]

The sentence in the article now says "...the US government planned to use the contras as a means to force the Sandinista government to divert scarce resources to the military and away from social and economic programs" and is reliably sourced.

I never really disputed that that was a tactic. But it ignores the fact that the diversion of resources was supposed to compel the Sandinista government to make concessions or eventually surrender power. This is supported both by the Reagan administration and the Sandinista government itself.

As for the other two points, I mentioned them not because they are in the article but to show just how utterly deceptive the edits are in general.

CJK (talk) 14:18, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

I'll open a new thread about this. --Mallexikon (talk) 05:32, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

"Threat of a good example?"[edit]

CJK wrote: "The sentence On the other hand, as for example Oxfam suspected, the US government saw "the threat of a good example is also a blatant falsehood, because nowhere in the book does Oxfam claim such motivation." Well, Oxfam's book goes on and on about what a good example Sandinistan Nicaragua was in terms of economic/social policies... it's introduction is mocking the US perceiving small and poor Nicaragua as a threat to national security... And the book's title is "The threat of a good example" - how do you think they meant that? --Mallexikon (talk) 05:32, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

The title is a rhetorical question, attempting to mock the U.S., not advancing any particular motivation on the part of the U.S. Nowhere in the book does it theorize that U.S. support for the Contras was because of "the threat of a good example". Using it to say Oxfam suspected [that] the US government saw "the threat of a good example is a vicious distortion of the source piece. Nothing but hateful anti-American propaganda on your part.
Another one of your sources is bogus too. "Despite the 1984 Nicaraguan elections being declared "free, fair, hotly contested" by most foreign observes..." The source links to a letter to the editor form a one observer group of about 30 people. It does not say "most foreign observers".
CJK (talk) 14:17, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
Well how can it be a rhetorical question if Oxfam's report goes on and on about what a good example Nicaragua actually was? (BTW regarding your taking offense of the wording of "most foreign observers"... true, the source doesn't really say it. Is it true anyway? I think you know as well as I do that it is. But for the sake of doing everything very correctly, I re-worded and added appropriate RS.) --Mallexikon (talk) 05:46, 24 September 2013 (UTC)

This isn't hard. Oxfam said Nicaragua was a good example. It did not say that that was the motivating factor behind U.S. policy. Your contention to the contrary is therefore a gross misrepresentation. It is also flat-out illogical seeing how the U.S. gave Nicaragua over $100 million in aid and facilitated hundreds of millions of other loans, before they were caught red-handed. None of this is mentioned in your version.

One of your sources says Foreign observers generally reported that the election was fair. Opposition groups, however, said that the FSLN domination of government organs, mass organizations groups, and much of the media created a climate of intimidation that precluded a truly open election. You included the view of foreign observers while ignoring the views of others.

CJK (talk) 15:57, 25 September 2013 (UTC)

Well, of course I'm ignoring the view of the opposition in this instance because they can not be regarded as having a neutral point of view. That's why foreign election observers are sent in in the first place, no? And concerning Oxfam's book - you are still vehemently trying to deny the obvious here, aren't you? So let me ask you straight: when they title their book "A threat of a good example", they mean a threat to whom? --Mallexikon (talk) 02:26, 26 September 2013 (UTC)

That's not how neutrality works. The views of both parties as well as neutral parties have to represented.

If all you can do is repeat the title of the book I'm afraid that we're not going to get anywhere. If you can't find any support for your position in the actual text then your interpretation of the title is wrong, or at least unsupported.

CJK (talk) 22:26, 26 September 2013 (UTC)

Please read WP:NPOV again. We can not state the opinion of the opposition as a fact here - the opposition has a COI and it's quite probable that it's lying or distorting the facts to advance its point. I don't know why you think that we have to present "the views of both parties as well as neutral parties" - we definitely have to present the neutral parties' view, because what they say is reliable. If you add one of the COI parties' view, you'd always have to present the opposing party's view as well to avoid undue weight.
But you still have evaded my question (surprisingly, since it's actually pretty simple), so I'll ask it again: according to your analysis, when Oxfam title their book "A threat of a good example", they mean a threat to whom? --Mallexikon (talk) 02:01, 28 September 2013 (UTC)

I didn't say we should state the opinion of the opposition as a fact. I said their POV should be included.

It really is irrelevant how you or I want to interpret the title. If you can't back up your interpretation with the actual contents of the book then it is not for you to interpret.

CJK (talk) 18:12, 28 September 2013 (UTC)

But you still have evaded my question (surprisingly, since it's actually pretty simple), so I'll ask it again: according to your analysis, when Oxfam title their book "A threat of a good example", they mean a threat to whom? --Mallexikon (talk) 02:11, 7 October 2013 (UTC)

Are you asking me to read their minds? It doesn't matter what I think or you think. I presume it was just an attempt to mock the Reagan administration's rhetoric. It obviously is not a serious question.

CJK (talk) 17:56, 8 October 2013 (UTC)

"Read their minds" is a pretty big term for a conclusion of this modest intellectual dimension... Yes of course this is a reference to the Reagan administration's reasoning, who else described Nicaragua as a threat? But just in order to take the wind out of your sails, I changed the text now anyway, so I could remove the POV template. Cheers, --Mallexikon (talk) 01:19, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

Your changes did nothing to address the issue at hand.

CJK (talk) 21:44, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

...? What's your objection? --Mallexikon (talk) 12:41, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Your version continues to falsely state On the other hand, as for example Oxfam suspected, Nicaragua posed "the threat of a good example" if the economic restructuring and social reforms undertaken by the Sandinistas in the early eighties (which had already received praise not just by Oxfam, but also by the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank[41]) succeeded.

CJK (talk) 18:01, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Why would that be falsely stated? It's reliably sourced. --Mallexikon (talk) 09:27, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

Please provide the page numbers that substantiate the statement.

CJK (talk) 20:23, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

Certainly [3]. --Mallexikon (talk) 07:43, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

I find absolutely nothing that substantiates Oxfam suspected Nicaragua posed "the threat of a good example" as the reforms undertaken by the Sandinistas in the early eighties to improve the condition of the people... started to succeed.

As has already been pointed out to you, the Oxfam book does not discuss the motivations surrounding the Contra policy, which is what this article is about, not Sandinista reforms.

CJK (talk) 22:32, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

I find it kind of disturbing that you "find absolutely nothing that substantiates" the sentence... Oxfam very obviously suspected the threat of a good example - that's the title of their book (remember: Nicaragua - The Threat of a Good Example?). They also go at lengths to document that the reforms of the Sandinistas were successful in the early 80s (I actually took care to quote the book in the in-line citation: "The remarkable progress in health and literacy achieved in the early 1980's can barely be sustained."... "from Oxfam's experience of working in seventy-six developing countries, Nicaragua was to prove exceptional in the strength of that Government's commitment...to improving the condition of the people and encouraging their active participation in the development process.." Didn't you read it?). This sentence is about as reliably sourced as it gets. So what exactly is your objection? --Mallexikon (talk) 03:16, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

I find it disturbing that you seem to be unaware that the topic at hand is the Contras, and the U.S. policy regarding the contras, not the Sandinista reforms. Oxfam's compliments regarding those reforms are of no relevance to this article.

If you are arguing that it is relevant based on your unsupported interpretation of the title there is not much we can do. That would seem to indicate that you are more interested in pushing Chomskyite propaganda than accurate history. As pointed out to you twice, the book does not seek to address the reasons behind the Contra policy. Implying that it does simply misinforms the reader.

CJK (talk) 21:58, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

Interprete the title? It says "Nicaragua - The Threat of a Good Example?" and I wrote: "as for example Oxfam suspected, Nicaragua posed "the threat of a good example"..." What could possibly be incorrect about this? --Mallexikon (talk) 02:53, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

I think you know very well what is "incorrect about this". Your version falsely indicates that Oxfam believed that the U.S. funding for the Contras was motivated by Sandinista domestic policies. In fact, the book does not address the issue of motivation at all. It isn't even about the Contras, so why is it here?

Stop waving the title around like it means something. If it meant what you say it meant the book would just say so. The fact that it doesn't indicates that the title is not to be taken literally. That would be the interpretation of anybody who is not a fan of Chomsky.

20:10, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

The book is asking a question ("Nicaragua: The Threat of a Good Example?"). That's all I've stated ("... Oxfam suspected, Nicaragua posed "the threat of a good example"). But I'll be happy to change my sentence to "Oxfam titled its report about Nicaraguan development reforms of the early 80s "Nicaragua - The Threat of a Good Example?", ...") if you like that better. --Mallexikon (talk) 02:00, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

You don't seem to grasp the point I am trying to get across, namely that the Oxfam book is not relevant to the section of the article we are editing. It does not make any assessment of the political background of the Contra war.

21:36, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

Well, it does, you're just denying it (why?). See, they didn't hide this question somewhere between the pages. They put it right on the cover. They go on and on about how beneficial the Sandinista reforms were for the people, one automatically wonders: what's the reason why the U.S. attacked them? --Mallexikon (talk) 01:47, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

They put it on the cover, but didn't see fit to write about it in the book? What utter nonsense.

So you don't have to wonder: the U.S. "attacked" them because of their support of the FMLN--support that they themselves admitted occurred. Before that the U.S. was sending tens of millions in economic assistance to Nicaragua. I can provide sources for this, since you seem to be unaware of some of the more basic facts that concern the Contra War.

CJK (talk) 21:29, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

Ok I see, you're reverting to ad-hominems again... Well, they did put the question on the cover and it's not up to you or me to judge that, is it? I changed the text again, it now says "... Oxfam titled its report about Nicaraguan development reforms of the early eighties "Nicaragua - The Threat of a Good Example?"..." This way it's just stating a plain fact. Can we end this discussion now? --Mallexikon (talk) 02:57, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

Oxfam's report on Sandinista reforms has nothing to do with the political background of the Contra War. Your "argument" is based on your personal interpretation of the title which is wholly unsupported by the ensuing text. As you can see, the title is a question, and the question is not answered--hence it is a rhetorical question and would be read as a rhetorical question by anyone who is not interested in propaganda.

CJK (talk) 21:12, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

The sentence as it is states nothing but a fact ("... Oxfam titled its report about Nicaraguan development reforms of the early eighties "Nicaragua - The Threat of a Good Example?"..."). Where do you see any interpretation of mine here? --Mallexikon (talk) 02:54, 20 October 2013 (UTC)

Oxfam's report has nothing to do with this article, and thus needs to be removed. Your contention to the contrary is your unsupported interpretation.

CJK (talk) 20:15, 20 October 2013 (UTC)

Really sorry, man, but this is a reliable source dealing with the political and economic background of Nicaragua in the early 80s. I don't see any rationale for you to have this source banned from this article's section. I mean, I'll be happy to take this to the reliable sources noticeboard, but would you maybe reconsider your demand? I think it would spare everybody some trouble. --Mallexikon (talk) 03:04, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

I'm not sure why that would help, given that I never argued it was not a reliable source.

What I have said is that you have either intentionally or unintentionally distorted the meaning of the title (a rhetorical question) so that you can act as if the contents of the book are related to the political background of the Contra war, when any plain reading of it would show otherwise.

CJK (talk) 17:26, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

I haven't distorted anything. The sentence as it is says nothing more than that Oxfam made a book about Nicaraguan reforms in the early 80s and called it "The Threat of a Good Example?" - the sentence states nothing but facts. Now do you want to appeal to the reliable sources noticeboard and try to have the Oxfam book thrown out altogether, or can we finally call this discussion resolved? --Mallexikon (talk) 02:16, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

This section/article is not about Nicaraguan reforms in the early 1980s, so there is no reason for it to be there at all.

CJK (talk) 15:35, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

Well, with that title... anyway, that's your personal opinion. RS noticeboard, or discussion resolved? --Mallexikon (talk) 06:22, 23 October 2013 (UTC)

The title, as has been pointed out to you, is a rhetorical question designed to mock the Reagan administration's rhetoric. As proof, nowhere in the book do you see the title's question answered or commented upon in any way, shape or form. Which should indicate to any fair-minded reader that it is not to be taken literally. The only people who would think otherwise are those who are already predisposed to deeply despise the United States.

The material was inserted by a user who was banned for copyright violations and was not even read by him, as his own admission shows. Rather it was stolen by him from another fraud, Chomsky or someone associated with him. Why exactly are you investing so much time defending it?

CJK (talk) 21:14, 23 October 2013 (UTC)

"The title ... is a rhetorical question designed to mock the Reagan administration's rhetoric... " Man, you even admit it yourself that this book is referring to the political background of the contra war. The only real rationale I've heard from you is that you don't like the title's implications, and you don't like the guy who inserted this source, and you don't like Chomsky. This discussion is going in circles. Please find its continuation at Wikipedia:Reliable sources/Noticeboard#Nicaragua - The Threat of a Good Example?. --Mallexikon (talk) 03:48, 24 October 2013 (UTC)

No, I said it was referring to the rhetoric employed by the administration as of 1985. It does not discuss the origins aka "background" of said administration's policies.

CJK (talk) 15:28, 24 October 2013 (UTC)

The comments at the RS noticeboard largely substantiated your claim that Oxfam's book should rather not be used as a source for the sentence in question (as this might likely constitute original research). They also gave recommendations how to solve this problem. I implemented those recommendations. Cheers, --Mallexikon (talk) 02:57, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

Chomsky[edit]

I fail to see why Chomsky is an appropriate source. Just because he expresses a number of unique opinions does not mean that his WP:FRINGE view should be inserted in every article.

CJK (talk) 17:18, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

Well, following the RS noticeboard's recommendations I didn't use Chomsky but Jim Cummins as a source here, who is merely referring to Chomsky. So unless you think that Cummins also can't be regarded as an appropriate/reliable source, I guess there's no problem. --Mallexikon (talk) 04:30, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

Jim Cummins appears to have no expertise into this matter, so I am not sure why he is relevant either.

CJK (talk) 17:13, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

Chomsky's views are not fringe, they are routinely described in mainstream academic sources. That does not mean that all or even most people agree with him on everything he writes. And Cummmins certainly has the expertise to determine whether or not Chomsky said something. Incidentally, people are not sources, published works are. TFD (talk) 19:08, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

I'm not sure why you are (once again) intervening to obstruct my edits.

Chomsky's views are certainly the definition of fringe, I'm not sure which "mainstream sources" you have in mind that agree with him on this issue.

CJK (talk) 18:57, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

The definition of fringe is ideas that are ignored in academic writing. Chomsky's political writings are cited in thousands of academic books and papers.[4] TFD (talk) 19:51, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

Um, no, per WP:FRINGE the definition is actually A theory that is not broadly supported by scholarship in its field. You need to provide evidence that Chomsky's opinion of Nicaragua is broadly supported by said scholarship.

CJK (talk) 21:11, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

"We use the term fringe theory in a very broad sense to describe ideas that depart significantly from the prevailing or mainstream view in its particular field. For example, fringe theories in science depart significantly from mainstream science and have little or no scientific support." TFD (talk) 21:36, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

Exactly, I'm glad you understand. So you need to prove that his theory does not depart significantly from the prevailing or mainstream view.

CJK (talk) 21:52, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

No, you need to explain where it differs significantly. As I mentioned, his political writings have been published by academic publishers and are widely cited. TFD (talk) 22:14, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

How am I supposed to prove a negative, namely that mainstream scholarship does not agree with a fringe argument? The onus is actually on you to prove that mainstream scholarship endorses his position on Nicaragua.

CJK (talk) 22:47, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

No. The source we have proves already that Chomsky got scientific support. If you think that's not enough, the onus on proving that he's fringe is on you. Would you maybe like to take this to the noticeboards for RS or fringe? --Mallexikon (talk) 05:03, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

This isn't a "scientific" issue, and I explained that your author has no expertise into this matter. It has to be supported by scholarship in its field per WP:FRINGE.

CJK (talk) 14:56, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

CJK, by your reasoning I could present any mainstream source and you could claim it is fringe and refuse to explain why. How is it proving a negative to prove something is fringe? Surely it is proving a positive, while proving something is not fringe is proving a negative. TFD (talk) 15:09, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

If nobody mainstream discusses Chomsky's theory about Nicaragua (because it is fringe), it logically cannot be proven that it is fringe.

As you probably are already aware, Chomsky is a linguist, not a historian. He claims to be an anarchist which is very much a fringe ideology. You need to present the views of historians to demonstrate that his opinion is not fringe.

CJK (talk) 15:37, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

As I mentioned, his political views are discussed in thousands of academic books and articles. The political orientation of writers has no bearing on whether their views are accepted. Hence if 51% of academics are liberals and 49% are conservative, it does not mean anything written by a conservative is immediately fringe. It is only fringe if it is not published in mainstream academic writing. TFD (talk) 16:33, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

Then please show me where, in "mainstream academic writing", Chomsky's theory about Nicaragua is accepted.

CJK (talk) 19:50, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

One was provided to you. Anyway I am not interested in continuing this discussion because you are too abrasive, argumentative and angry. Please do not take that as endorsement of your opinions. TFD (talk) 20:03, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

What part of "please show me" was abrasive to you?

As WP:FRINGE states clearly, the theory must be broadly supported by scholarship in its field. Thus far, nothing fulfilling that criteria has been provided.

CJK (talk) 20:23, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

C'mon man. Soften up a little. We're not your enemies, we're all volunteers here. Our job is to present reliably sourced information and then let the readers draw their own conclusions. There's no need to try to "protect" readers from Chomsky's theories. Move on. Or take it to the RS notice noticeboard or fringe noticeboard already. --Mallexikon (talk) 08:51, 2 November 2013 (UTC)

If we want to let the readers draw their own conclusions, why don't we just state the facts and let them form their own theories?

CJK (talk) 20:22, 2 November 2013 (UTC)

That's exactly what we did. The facts are that "Chomsky - citing reports from Oxfam - suspected that Nicaragua posed "the threat of a good example"[41], as social and economic reforms undertaken by the Sandinistas in the early eighties (which had already received praise not just by Oxfam, but also by the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank[42]) started to succeed." --Mallexikon (talk) 01:09, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

Who cares what he "suspected"? As I said before your source violates WP:FRINGE.

CJK (talk) 01:51, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

Listen, we've tried to explain to you before why Chomsky is not fringe. If you don't want to hear it because you hate him, fine. I'm not interested in continuing this discussion any further. Take it to Wikipedia:Fringe theories/Noticeboard if you really think you have a point. Cheers, --Mallexikon (talk) 06:05, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

All I'm asking for is evidence that his theory is "broadly supported by scholarship in its field" per WP:FRINGE. If it isn't fringe, you should have no problem producing such evidence.

15:39, 3 November 2013 (UTC)CJK (talk)

150 sources![edit]

At the time of me writing this comment, this article had nearly 150 sources for its information. I don't know of any Wikipedia articles with that many sources. And yet it's only a B-Class? Outrageous! moeburn (talk) 19:33, 15 September 2013 (UTC)

Boba Fett TBH[edit]

I have just blocked this editor as they were clearly a sockpuppet account belonging to a blocked editor. Per the usual way of handling such situations, all of their contributions can, and probably should, be reverted. I've found several copyright violations in the material added by the Boba Fett TBH account in various articles, and this was one of the main reasons the parent account was blocked. Nick-D (talk) 08:49, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

Thank you Nick-D, for vindicating my well-grounded suspicions here.
CJK (talk) 14:24, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

Recent removal[edit]

Hi TBTIS, could you explain in more detail precisely why you removed the section on Chomsky/Oxfam? As I see it, that section provided a perspective not covered elsewhere, and it is hardly undue, so it needs to remain. Cheers, Vanamonde93 (talk) 18:10, 6 May 2014 (UTC)

The "threat of a good example" = inspiring revolution elsewhere, i.e. attacking with "ideological subversion" with their "internal behavior" via economic reforms.--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 18:27, 6 May 2014 (UTC)
I don't quite understand you; why is that a reason to remove the content? Vanamonde93 (talk) 19:00, 6 May 2014 (UTC)
A more detailed explanation is for it's own page, not here. The basic point is clearly made without it.--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 19:23, 6 May 2014 (UTC)
With due respect, no, it's not. There is a difference between exporting ideology, and showing that an ideology can support a stable society (whereas you appear to be saying that they are the same. It would help if you elaborated.) Considering the fact that that statement was the product of previous consensus, you should reinstate it, or allow me to do so. If you strongly feel the need to remove it, you can start a discussion here. Vanamonde93 (talk) 20:49, 6 May 2014 (UTC)
I agree with Vanamonde93. --Mallexikon (talk) 04:46, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
How's this?:
"More significantly, there were concerns that the fall of Somoza and Sandinista reforms would inspire and strengthen leftist revolutionary movements elsewhere, thereby threatening U.S. control of the Panama Canal, sea lanes and oil supplies."
Satisfactory?--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 17:32, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for discussing this. This version is an improvement, but I feel it is still inadequate, as it mentions the existance of the reforms, not their success. Also, I believe mentioning Chomsky by name is necessary, as Oxfam is essentially a primary source; Chomsky is the one making the argument that it provided the "threat of good example" which is a pithy phrase, and worth quoting. Does that make sense? Vanamonde93 (talk) 19:48, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
Alright, hang on.--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 20:40, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
Peace, I'm in no hurry. Also, you might want to give WP:INDENT a glance...Vanamonde93 (talk) 21:05, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
Wait a minute. Why would Sandinista reforms inspire anything if they weren't successful?--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 21:16, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
Because their very existence proved that they could be carried out. They would have inspired stuff even if they had failed; they succeeded in some respects, and which strengthened their cause further. You're right, logically they should only inspire stuff if they were successful, but neither social movements, nor the brain of the average wikipedia reader, works in that way. Anyhow, thanks for coming round, and I really appreciate the cleanup effort you've undertaken. Vanamonde93 (talk) 21:30, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
I'll note that they were successful in there. Hang on.--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 21:39, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
I think the current revision is good, at least for that bit. Vanamonde93 (talk) 22:37, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
Did you want something else?--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 22:46, 7 May 2014 (UTC)
I wasn't trying to be dick. I meant it. Did you want me to improve something else?--The Best There Is 'Snikt!' (talk) 17:54, 8 May 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────That would be my bad, I wasn't maintaining an accusatory silence, I just saw this when I was very busy, and forgot to reply. No, I didn't have anything else at this moment. Thanks for being very responsive; would that every editor were this way. Cheers, friend. Vanamonde93 (talk) 19:27, 8 May 2014 (UTC)

Agree with Vanamonde again. Thanks, The Best There Is 'Snikt!'. --Mallexikon (talk) 05:52, 11 May 2014 (UTC)