User talk:Tlhslobus

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I'm at least temporarily semi-retired from Wikipedia
I'm at least temporarily semi-retired from Wikipedia, as it's proving too much of a distraction from more important things. I had intended to be fully retired at least until if and when I had completed some of those 'more important things', but so far that has proved too difficult. If I do succeed in completing 'some of those more important things', I plan to eventually return, though I'm not sure when (and I may eventually decide that returning would be a mistake).Tlhslobus (talk) 11:19, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

Welcome from Cubs197[edit]

Crystal Clear app gadu.png Welcome, Tlhslobus!

Hello, Tlhslobus, and welcome to Wikipedia! I'm Cubs197, one of the thousands of editors here at Wikipedia. Here are a few good links for newcomers:

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Cubs197 (talk) 10:45, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

Moby-Dick and Melville[edit]

Hello! Just making sure you know that what you're adding to Moby-Dick and Herman Melville doesn't quite follow policy. For one thing, the tone is very unencyclopedic and full of weasel words. It comes across as original research, which is not allowed. You also can't use Wikipedia as a reliable source, so never put it as a footnote (especially if it's a reference to info that you added to another article; that's definitely OR). --Midnightdreary (talk) 16:48, 6 November 2009 (UTC)

Laws of thought -- Rational or Logical ?[edit]

The article begins by asserting:
'The laws of thought are fundamental axiomatic rules upon which rational discourse itself is based.'
As a mere layperson who has no wish to get into an edit-war against actual or alleged experts, I am reluctant to correct what nevertheless seems to me to be a common abuse of language in that statement (which seems acceptable in everyday speech but arguably not in an encyclopedia article about logic), namely the use of the word 'rational' when one means 'logical'.
For instance self-delusion through wishful thinking is illogical, in that it violates rules of logic, but it may well be perfectly 'rational' if it fulfils the person's rational desire to remain happy or to become happier, or even it doesn't but if the person mistakenly thinks that it will, or hopes that it might, or whatever. Discourse intended to achieve such a rational objective is then arguably 'rational discourse', no matter how much it violates rules of logic.
Much the same can probably also often be said of much discourse in pursuit of a rational motive to deceive others (which arguably means something like almost half of all discourses in almost any debate on almost any subject).
I may eventually amend the text myself (if I remember), but first I'd prefer to wait and see if somebody with more expertise than me can amend it better. Tlhslobus (talk) 13:22, 11 October 2012 (UTC)
Hi there, Tlhslobus!
I agree with you that the leading sentence of this article is misleading, and is not entirely correct.
The idea is derived from Aristotle's Metaphysics, and it is held to be dogmatically correct by the entire Aristotelian world of philosophers and theologians. For this historical and political reason, if you change it, you will likely find yourself in an edit war that you cannot possibly win. For every valid reference you suggest, there are a thousand against you!
Their underlying argument is that the world is just as Aristotle described it (this, of course, is incorrect according to modern, post-Galilean science, but is correct according to ancient, and still practiced Aristotelian science). This is what Rosa is saying. The second half of their argument is that people are Aristotelian thinkers, and to them the laws of thought naively define rationality. This half is almost entirely correct. You and I are the exceptions. We see the difference. Regards, BlueMist (talk) 22:45, 8 November 2012 (UTC)
Belated thanks, BlueMist, but it looks like you were too pessimistic (see User_talk:67.166.211.24#Congrats_and_Thanks), though you may well have been right to think that I couldn't have fixed it, so quite likely I owe you thanks for sparing me from a distressing losing edit war. If so, thanks. Tlhslobus (talk) 20:32, 22 September 2014 (UTC)
I'm on your side. 'Thought' is much more than narrow propositional language with strict adherence to classical logic. The traditional 'laws of thought' are a false claim to the contrary. BlueMist (talk) 03:01, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, BlueMist, though sometimes I worry that I shouldn't do anything to correct such mistakes, on the grounds that the more confused people are about the true nature of things like thought, the longer it may take us to develop the kind of Artificial Intelligence that will eventually take over (and perhaps keep us as pets, if we're lucky). Tlhslobus (talk) 03:10, 23 September 2014 (UTC)

Dickheads, fuckheads, and ochlocracy[edit]

Thanks very much for your "heads up". Appreciated, and feeling a little heartwarmed to find someone responding. Yes, what you wrote at this is very interesting/disturbing. I agree wholeheartedly and commented further there. Seems a vital issue to me, even if it seems to exercise so few. Ahh, the lot of the dissident! LookingGlass (talk) 10:51, 31 January 2013 (UTC)

Thanks, LookingGlass. I added a further brief comment there on who is calling whom 'anti-social', given that persecution is profoundly anti-social. I also mention there that this may be a case of what psychologists call 'Projection', where accusation is really a form of confession. I wonder will that get me in trouble as an alleged ad hominem attack - my defence would probably be to quote WP:IAR (which says to ignore all rules if this is necessary to improve Wikipedia). But I may in fact have been far too mild, as I think that pychologists would actually say that they have a technical term to describe those who single people out for persecution, persecute people, and celebrate and cheer on persecution, and that term is 'psychopath'. But I think admins might ban me if I dared to say so in that place. And they might be right to ban me if I did, as I have concerns that psychologists use of the term 'psychopath' as a highly pejorative label for huge numbers of people may often itself be dangerously oppressive, so I possibly or probably shouldn't go down that route myself. Also such a label might be more appropriate for the author of the 'Fuckhead' article than for the author of the 'dick' article. And even the 'Fuckhead' author may simply have been rather innocently trying to amuse or shock. And so on. Tlhslobus (talk) 08:01, 1 February 2013 (UTC)
LoL All things in moderation? Psychologist are surely above being pejorative, surely a psychopathic symptom if ever there was one?! ;) I rather like the research concluding that successful entrepreneurs and business people tend to be sociopaths (psychopaths). Nice to have the boot on a foot placed where it should be imho. Anyway, a good dose of pejorativeness cleans out the tubes I find, even if it does get me into endless trouble. Words should be understood as the fragile things they are. They do their best but we lean on them far too much. It's all about balance, isn't it? I love the wiki "ignore all rules" rule. That one will definitely be put into my quiver. I seem to have ignored "my" rule of replying on my talk page. Knew there HAD to be a good reason! LookingGlass (talk) 19:13, 12 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm afraid shrinks tend to classify business people as psychopaths, but 'sociopath' seems to be a term they reserve for classifying the rest of us - at least judging by one famous Irish legal case (the Kerry Babies enquiry) in which a shrink gave it as his professional opinion that the woman at the centre of the case was a sociopath. Her lawyer asked him to define the term, and after he did so, the lawyer asked him would he agree that this definition would describe about half the population - and he replied Yes :)
Ahh, hired guns! The words claimed or originated by social sciences cannot be defined as those of natural sciences can. Barristers use this fact to build their attacks on opposing expert witnesses. It makes good headlines, and sways juries if the theatre is good enough, but little more :) LookingGlass (talk) 12:11, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
You're probably right in general, but I can't help suspecting that this may be one of the exceptions 'that proves the rule' (as the popular saying goes, despite (or maybe because of) the fact that an exception can disprove a rule, but never prove it). As far as I remember, the shrink wasn't really a hired gun, just somebody who got dragged into the case by circumstances, and the lawyer under the circumstances was just doing what he was supposed to do (after all, the shrink agreed the lawyer was right, so it would seemingly have been gross negligence for the lawyer not to ask his question). So it may well be that this incident does actually tell us something about social sciences in general and/or shrinks in particular. Then again that may just be wishful thinking on my part, and I'd expect most shrinks to agree that's all it is :) Tlhslobus (talk) 12:42, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for your addition Tihslobus and your offer of help. Appreciated. Now, "where" "should" this conversation be held? Your Talk page, my Talk page or the article. I get dizzy!  :) LookingGlass (talk) 07:23, 21 May 2013 (UTC)
The Ochlocracy Talk page seems best, at least until there's any evidence to the contrary, on the basis that it shows what was in earlier parts of the conversation, as a possibly useful reminder. Tlhslobus (talk) 09:41, 21 May 2013 (UTC)

Prophecy of the Popes[edit]

I have removed some of your additions to Prophecy of the Popes. The Bruno book is published by Xulon Press, which means it is self-published, and fails WP:SPS. StAnselm (talk) 19:52, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

Re: Premier League[edit]

Hi. The problem with talking about "foreign clubs" is that most of the talk revolves around Welsh and, to a lesser extent, Scottish participation. It's rather inaccurate I'd argue for clubs from one part of the UK to be regarded as "foreign" in another part of the same country. - Chrism would like to hear from you 18:20, 25 May 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for your reply, Chris. That was why I called the section "Non-English", not "foreign". I simply assumed it was you who had changed it to "foreign" and I didn't want an argument about it. If you want to change it back to "Non-English" (with or without "club"), you would have my full support on that. (I'm posting this on both our Talk pages, to be sure you don't miss it - if you want to continue the conversation, please let me know which Talk page you prefer; I'm putting your Talk page on my watchlist, if I haven't done so already). Tlhslobus (talk) 08:10, 26 May 2013 (UTC)
If you don't like "non-English", "Celtic" might do instead, though it has its own problems (such as Cornish clubs, and because in theory the section should be available for anybody wishing to report on any future actual or hypothetical proposals to add Continental clubs, such as already happens in Rugby Union (2 Italian clubs in the Celtic League) and Rugby League (where the Catalans play in an otherwise all UK top tier league), or for any editor simply wishing to briefly point out the absence of such proposals in the PL in contrast to those other leagues). But I'm not really bothered, as, by and large, no such wording deprives the reader of any important info, nor supplies it either. Tlhslobus (talk) 08:40, 26 May 2013 (UTC)
I now see you had already made the change to 'Non-English clubs'. Thanks, and please ignore the stuff about "Celtic" above as out-of-date Tlhslobus (talk) 10:13, 26 May 2013 (UTC)

Re: Justin Fashanu[edit]

Hi: (as this is the first time I've used this feature - please bear with me as I become familiar with it.) Just to say that I am an old friend of the author of the recent Justin Fashanu (JF) biography. He and I have been thinking about trying to improve the JF entry and we were very pleased to see the work you have been doing on it. We were thinking of making changes to add some missing information, give better sources and to question some of the material in the ‘allegation and suicide’ section. As you will appreciate these revisions emerged from the writing of the biography. However in view of the good work you have done we decided we would like to make contact to see whether you would be interested in working collaboratively. If so then I can email you some of our proposed revisions. But, even if this wasn't of interest, it would still be good to hear back from you. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Malcb (talkcontribs) 18:48, 3 June 2013 (UTC)

Thanks. I don't wish to get involved in a collaboration with people who seem to have a financial vested interest in the matter. On the other hand, you don't need my permission or my collaboration to make reliably-sourced amendments. These can perhaps include information sourced to Jim Read's book if it's deemed a reliable source - I see no clear reason why it wouldn't be - the expression for its publisher DB Publishing (defunct since January 2013, according to something I found on Google, but continuing with e-books as JMD Media), gets nearly 5000 hits on Wikipedia Search, of which about 125 seem to be genuine references to sports books published by it.. Other editors (not necessarily me) may dispute whatever you add (including whoever deleted the bit about Jim Read's book as alleged advertising). I-forget-which section of Wikipedia's rules deals with such conflict-of-interest problems (some admin may tell you about it, if you want to ask them - I may or may not be contacting some admin myself for advice on the matter). I should perhaps (or perhaps not) mention that I'm not particularly interested in wasting any more of my time on Justin Fashanu - I just read the article after hearing his niece on BBC2 Newsnight, then made a few mods to bring the text into line with the quoted sources (particularly The Times and the BBC), then, after somebody 'tidied up' my prose, I made a few more mods to correct some excessive and misleading 'tidying-up'. On both occasions, like other editors, I left out arguably relevant allegations in those two sources which I feared, perhaps mistakenly, might violate Wikipedia guidelines on what can be said about living people - if you want to include that sort of stuff, ask an admin and don't ask me. Tlhslobus (talk) 02:01, 4 June 2013 (UTC)
Oh, in case you're interested, I forgot to mention that when making my original mods I also copied some stuff about Justin Fashanu to the suicide note article. Tlhslobus (talk) 02:29, 4 June 2013 (UTC)
I have now got the following advice from an Admin, which I'm passing on to you:

The main thing in my opinion when dealing with persons with obvious COI issues is to suggest that they only suggest edits on the talk page, not make them themselves. They don't always like that idea and they don't actually have to do it, but it makes them appear more credible and willing to respect our policies. If they are slanting the article on one direction or another we have a dedicated noticeboard at WP:COIN for dealing with that.

Tlhslobus (talk) 18:20, 6 June 2013 (UTC)

9/11[edit]

I want to express to you that, before 9/11, which I personally experienced very intimately in NYC, the Tian An Men revolt and its suppression was the most personally traumatic political event of my life. Please be assured my opposition to the Chen article has nothing to do with my hopes for China. μηδείς (talk) 03:23, 6 June 2013 (UTC)

English football clubs in international competition[edit]

Hi, I just made a really big edit to the English football clubs in international competition article, correcting a lot of style issues, etc. I realise you've made a fair few edits to the same article in the time it took me to make this one, and so there was an edit conflict that resulted in me overwriting your last few contributions. Instead of you reverting me to get your contributions back, is there any chance you could just re-add your stuff in a new edit? This would save me another multi-hour editing process. Believe me, I did not make this edit to cause you unnecessary grief, but there was no way it could be avoided. – PeeJay 12:54, 10 June 2013 (UTC)

OK, I'll try adding it back, if I can. But maybe in future you could break your edits into smaller sections + save a copy of larger changes, to avoid problems on this scale?Tlhslobus (talk) 14:25, 10 June 2013 (UTC)
There was no way I could do that without making the article look inconsistent throughout for a short period. Plus, my edit was broken up by me leaving the house for a good proportion of yesterday. Sorry for the inconvenience, but there really was nothing I could do. – PeeJay 16:17, 10 June 2013 (UTC)
No problem, Peejay, least said soonest mended. Tlhslobus (talk) 16:41, 10 June 2013 (UTC)

June 2013[edit]

Hello, I'm BracketBot. I have automatically detected that your edit to English football clubs in international competition may have broken the syntax by modifying 2 "()"s. If you have, don't worry, just edit the page again to fix it. If I misunderstood what happened, or if you have any questions, you can leave a message on my operator's talk page.

List of unpaired brackets remaining on the page:
  • UEFA Champions League|2008]]), and [[Manchester United]] ([[2008–09 UEFA Champions League|2009]])) going on to be runners-up, and [[Manchester United]] going on to win an all-English final against [
  • Champions League|2011]]),and [[Chelsea F.C.|Chelsea]] in [[2011–12 UEFA Champions League|2012]]) over the next four seasons (2010 to 2013), although [[Manchester United]] went on to be runners-up

Thanks, BracketBot (talk) 19:24, 10 June 2013 (UTC)


Dua's Layer[edit]

Hi and thanks for your contributions, I made some changes to Dua’s Layer, writing medical articles needs adherence to scientific methodology, my purpose was to apply those guidelines, please feel free to revert or modify the changes I made if you think they are inappropriate.Kiatdd (talk) 19:28, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

Thanks, Kiatdd. I have no problem with your changes. My problems are with the lack of a clear and explicit statement that it's still only a possible discovery, but I'm bringing that up on the Dua's Layer Talk page, as well as making my own attempt to fix th matter.Tlhslobus (talk) 02:29, 20 June 2013 (UTC)

BLP concerns - help needed[edit]

check-mark
This help request has been answered. If you need more help, you can ask another question on your talk page, contact the responding user(s) directly on their user talk page, or consider visiting the Teahouse.

I've put in the above help request (about half an hour ago, at 08.22 according to this page's history) as advised at WP:BLP. I've written up a brief summary of my concerns, but I'm not sure whether I should be posting them here, as they name, briefly describe, and link to Wikipedia pages that may violate BLP, mainly because they contain lots of mostly unsourced criticism (and praise) of at least one living person, or link to such a Wikipedia page. I expect to be going to bed fairly shortly. Tlhslobus (talk) 08:52, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

The BLP Noticeboard is the best place to bring the problems up. You shoould get a quick response by editors experienced in dealing with BLP issues. --GraemeL (talk) 15:36, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

Civility templates[edit]

Hi Tlhslobus, Sorry it looks like I misspoke. The essays Don't Be Inconsiderate and Don't Be Obnoxious can be found on the Template:Wikipedia essays under Civility AND on Template:Civility. The essay Don't be a Dick does NOT appear on either of those templates. But obviously there is a third template where DICK is being removed and reverted and I'm at a loss to know where that is  :-( -- KeithbobTalk 15:45, 22 November 2013 (UTC)

It's here, Keithbob. And the new 'The No Asshole Rule' is here.The Wikipedia:Civility article is liable to be one of the first that many new editors read, because they are automatically asked to read Wikipedia:Five pillars - the fourth of these pillars is Editors should treat each other with respect and civility which links to Wikipedia:Civility when you click on it. Tlhslobus (talk) 06:57, 23 November 2013 (UTC)
Incidentally, that means these guidelines may well be read by child editors, and this may mean there are WP:Child Protection issues. So I'm going to try to bring the matter to the attention of Wikipedia's child protection officers, but as I'm not entirely sure how to do this, if you know how to do it, please let me know. Tlhslobus (talk) 07:20, 23 November 2013 (UTC)
I see. The situation is even more absurd than I had thought. Why is DICK the only essay, to be cited in the see also section? I can't believe editors are actually disputing its removal. My goodness......-- KeithbobTalk 14:14, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

Lost! Help?[edit]

Hi, we had a conversation a while back about "Dickheads, fuckheads, and ochlocracy" and so I have come to you for advice. I hope this isn't out of order. After I requested references to some statements in an article another editor deleted the section together with my requests. As the passage seemed reasonable to me I reverted and explained my reasoning on the Talk page. I think an "edit war" has begun. I am steadily losing interest in engaging with Wikipedia, but would like to see if there exist any processes that might resolve "silly" things (perhaps most edit wars are over these). If you have time/and/or/inclination I would appreciate if you would cast your eye over the Talk page section concerned: Talk:Child_grooming#Unsourced_material, and give me the benefit of your wisdom. p.s The user's Talk page seems to show form :( LookingGlass (talk) 21:54, 16 January 2014 (UTC)

First, LookingGlass, belated thanks for your support on the Dick/Asshole/Fuckhead business. I should have thanked you earlier, but I was (and still am) at least mildly traumatised by my experience after raising the child bullying aspect, and I didn't (and still don't) want to write any more about the matter on Wikipedia.
Second, as regards your row with Squeakbox, I think his attitude was, or at least appeared to me, at least mildly uncivil and/or inconsiderate in at least one instance, but unfortunately I also happen to think he is basically right in the substance of the dispute, which may also explain why he has the support of Darkness Shines. The point is that there was text there which had been challenged (by you, and quite rightly) for over 3 months and still lacked any reliable citation in support, so anybody could remove it under WP:V, the relevant text being:
"All material in Wikipedia mainspace, including everything in articles, lists and captions, must be verifiable. All quotations, and any material whose verifiability has been challenged or is likely to be challenged, must include an inline citation that directly supports the material. Any material that needs a source but does not have one may be removed."
Your counterquotation of WP:Deletion is understandable but mistaken, as 'deletion' there has a special meaning which is not applicable here:
"Deletion of a Wikipedia article removes the current version and all previous versions from public view. Unlike page blanking, which can be performed (or reverted) by any user, only administrators can perform deletion. Administrators also can view deleted pages and reverse ("undelete") any deletion."
By that definition, deletion has not occured here, so WP:Deletion is irrelevant. So, as far as I can see, as regards the substantive issue, your only alternatives would seem to be to try WP:IAR (which I suspect would be exhausting and probably unsuccessful), or WP:BRD (probably same result), or to go through dispute resolution procedures (probably same result), or to ask for advice from somebody more knowledgeable than me, who would typically have to be found on the list of admins (probably same result, but possibly not, and possibly not too exhausting), or to find a reliable source (and you rightly pointed out that the source Squeakbox used was unreliable, though technically not a blog and the relevant citation was in English - it is the opinion of somebody writing under the pseudonym CaritasVeritas claiming Google +Wikipedia as its vague non-specific source, so definitely not reliable).
There remains the civility/consideration issue. I thought he was somewhat out of order to write at his initial deletion "(its not a blog but neevr mind, as of now I am not willing to tolerate this unsourced material in this article and strongly suggest you do not restore without a reliable source)" - specifically the mildly threatening 'I strongly suggest' bit seemed to me quite provocative and uncalled for at that point, as you had done almost nothing to deserve criticism, having simply and correctly deleted his unreliable citation, albeit arguably with a less-than-perfect explanation. (I should point out that I don't know whether you two have been in dispute before, which may or may not be relevant) I suspect it's not worth trying to complain about those few words of debatable and seemingly mild (but nonetheless possibly quite hurtful) incivility or lack of consideration, but I could be wrong (I've never yet formally complained about incivility/lack of consideration myself), and if you want to try, I once again suggest you ask for advice from somebody more knowledgeable than me, who, as already mentioned, would typically have to be found on the list of admins. Sorry I can't be of more help. All the best. Tlhslobus (talk) 04:41, 17 January 2014 (UTC)
I can't conceive of how you could have been more helpful Tlhslobus. A beautifully considered considerate honest open and helpful reply is how I'd describe it. And no thanks needed for my support. Happy if it felt useful.
I am surprised by Wiki policies, when I am brought up against them (I often have been when in civil disputes in the courts too come to that, or when doing jury duty etc). Now there comes a brief flash in which I imagine editing the most popular and august page I can think of to demand an inline citation against every single unexplicitly source statement e.g on Einstein (challenge possible for last sentence of first para of intro) or The Founding Fathers (entire introductory passage unsourced). I think I might be able to challenge 20-30% of articles without ever reaching the end of the task, and ould then return after three months and a day to begin wholesale deletion!
Re the grooming article, I think it should be relatively easy to find reliable sources for the passages I asked for citations for - the Butler Schloss Inquiry probably furnished some. Maybe I will hand some over when my "magnus opus" comes to that part ;) but at the moment I've lost the will to live. I'm thinking "that's the way these things go" so there's no point in running against the tide.
You're probably right about my initial brusqueness having started the nonsense rolling. I've just never got the hang of why some people seem to be able to fire off personal insult yet be tolerated while others can be merely short and be blue-pencilled. What an odd world we humans have created with our "rationality"!
Anyway, thanks agsin. Amazzing reply!! And great hearing from you. It's like a breath of fresh air reading your though.
Sorry to hear about the bullying thing, which I somehow missed. I know the boat has sailed, and hit the iceberg probably, but if you can point me in the direction .... I feel that, far from having been a support, I actually went AWOL at the moment some support might have been worth something, even if not to effect a change to the printed outcome.
Take care of yourself. LookingGlass (talk) 20:20, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, LookingGlass. I think you're being unfair on yourself - mild technical inaccuracy is not brusqueness, and I suspect (but cannot prove) that it wasn't really the inaccuracy that annoyed him, but the fact that you correctly deleted his citation, though I could of course be wrong.
As for deleting 20-30% of Wikipedia for lack of citations, that might be fun but it wouldn't be helpful, whereas at least in theory you could in fact arguably usefully tag 5 to 20% of uncited statements as genuinely requiring citations, though most uncited statements in lead paragraphs actually have supporting citations in the body of the article so perhaps they don't need citations, and many uncited statements probably don't need citations because they are not controversial and liable to be challenged (except by unreasonable people), but that still leaves probably millions of statements which should be challenged and backed by citations. You could then come back after maybe 3 months (there's no clear time specified, but 3 months seems reasonable) to see if citations had been supplied. In theory you could then delete them, but the responsible thing would be first to spend perhaps half an hour to see if you can find reliable online citations yourself (that's recommended somewhere in Wikipedia rules, though as far as I know the rules don't say first wait 3 months, so you presumably can't get at Squeakbox on that count) . If you can't find any, ask yourself is that because the statement is wrong, or because the relevant books don't have enough online snippets, and would deletion improve the article or not, and do you want to chase up citations in libraries yourself, or to leave a message in Talk asking others to do so, and possibly suggesting in Talk another 3 months before deletion. And when you've gone through all that you can delete what seems appropriate, while possibly then getting into an exhausting fight with somebody who objects. This responsible behaviour might well improve Wikipedia, but I haven't tried it myself because I suspect it would be a lot more like hard work than fun. Plus it risks giving people like Squeakbox a license for irresponsible deletions. But if you wanted to do so you could always try a small scale experiment to see whether or not it turned out to be on balance a good idea.
The child bullying aspect of Dick/Asshole/Fuckhead is here, but I don't advise getting involved there. I've written to Arbcom, who have told me there is no bullying issue (after basically telling me that I shouldn't have written to them as paedophilia is not involved, and without answering any of my arguments) and to carry on discussing the matter in Talk if I want to do so (which I don't as there no longer seems any point in wasting my time and causing myself further distress with such discussions). I've thought about other options, but I basically fear the costs risk outweighing the benefits for various strange reasons which it would take me too long to explain.
All the best.Tlhslobus (talk) 05:44, 21 January 2014 (UTC)
All conjectures most welcome Tlhslobus(as you'll gather from my reply on my Talk page).
I will have a look through the child Bullying piece just for interest. I realise you're not requesting or even recommending anything. By the by I notice the last poster on it was NewYorkBrad. I had a run in with him on an Apollo spaceflight article! Lost/gave up on that one too.
My aim for the "request/deletion sequence" fantasy wasn't to improve the content of wiki, that, surprisingly to me anyway, remains very good, when unattended by ... the usual faces. It was more to draw attention to the absurdity of the wiki codes and the way they're applied (more elsewhere)
LookingGlass (talk) 17:50, 21 January 2014 (UTC)

Orwell would be proud[edit]

Civility Barnstar Hires.png The Civility Barnstar
for ongoing contributions to discussions of civility. That, is your ongoing contributions. ElijahBosley (talk ☞) 20:01, 26 January 2014 (UTC)
2 Lihaas (talk) 16:58, 6 February 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, Lihaas. (I've already thanked Elijah on his Talk Page). Tlhslobus (talk) 09:30, 7 February 2014 (UTC)

Central African conflict[edit]

Djotodia took office in March. It wasn't a "first day" issue, that was my purpose of "shortly after". IHBR-YSA (talk) 09:12, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

Hello, IHBR-YSA. I was undoing your two combined changes, for reasons unrelated to 'shortly after', mainly because they removed the word 'minority' that was there as a result of lengthy discussion. They also introduced syntactical errors, although these could have been fixed without an undo, were it not for the 'minority' problem. If you still want to make changes, please discuss it on the relevant Talk page rather than here, preferably after reading the lengthy Christian-Muslim conflict section on that Talk page.Tlhslobus (talk) 09:29, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
Incidentally, IHBR-YSA, the main article says: The transitional council, composed of 105 members, met for the first time on 13 April 2013 and immediately elected Djotodia as interim President; there were no other candidates.[113] So I expect 'when' is intended to reflect this, in a way that 'shortly after' does not. However, as mentioned before, that was not my main concern, and if you want to rephrase the sentence to reflect this more accurately, and without altering the Christian-Muslim meanings, then please feel free to do so. Tlhslobus (talk) 09:52, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
OK no problem, you explained it pretty well. Thanx. IHBR-YSA (talk) 19:41, 29 January 2014 (UTC)
Kudos on the vcivility. Ive replied on the talk page.Lihaas (talk) 16:58, 6 February 2014 (UTC)

Notification colors[edit]

Hi Tlhslobus,

I moved your suggestion from Jimbo's page to Wikipedia:Village pump (idea lab) to help it get to the right audience. Please check in there for progress. — xaosflux Talk 14:43, 7 September 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, xaosflux, though I hope this thanks hasn't alarmed you with a red notification :) As it happens that move turns out to be excellent. But to avoid any risk of you getting into trouble in future, I should perhaps mention that you do risk upsetting people by making the move yourself when you were only asked to say where it should be moved, thus leaving the requester with the option of accepting your suggestion or not, perhaps especially when it's being moved from Jimbo's page, seemingly before Jimbo has had much of a chance to comment on it. In this case, Jimbo ignored it when making other comments, but this won't be obvious to a requester unless he or she checks, plus the requester can still persuade him-or-herself that Jimbo might have commented on it later. And Jimbo can still see the heading on his Talk page, but the requester won't initially know this, plus the fact that it has been moved seemingly makes it a lot less likely that he will read and comment on it (in theory it shouldn't matter whether he does or not, but in practice many people will think it at least might make a difference, and, for all I know, they may well be right). But as it happens, after giving the matter some thought, I've concluded that any difference he might make is roughly just as likely to be negative as positive, so I'm not too bothered whether he reads it or not, so all's well that ends well. So once again, thanks. Tlhslobus (talk) 04:50, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
I was alarmed (had a red 9 up there this morning). I don't normally move things like that, just was trying to help you get the best audience as soon as possible--please certainly feel free to revert me if you want it to be non-collapsed on that page (though now would risk forking). FWIW, Jimbo's talk page is somewhat unusual, in that it is heavily dealt with by tons of other editors. I would never have done that if it was any other active user's talk page. I actually really do like your idea, and hope it leads to a UI improvement for everyone. Happy editing, — xaosflux Talk 14:15, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, xaosflux. I don't think it would be a good idea to send it back to Jimbo's page at this point. I may well want to post an update there later, because I get the impression that lots of proposals along these lines have been put forward in the past and are been ignored for some reason (perhaps everybody waiting until somebody comes up with the non-existent perfect solution?), in which case a word of support from Jimbo might help break the logjam. But it's far too early for me to jump to that conclusion at the moment, as Quiddity of WMF has left links at the village pump to lofts of relevant stuff, which I'll have to read and think about before I do anything else on the subject. Thanks again for your help, and all the best. Tlhslobus (talk) 05:56, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

Help me![edit]

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Please help me with the following: How can I get this problem adressed and/or fixed by somebody more capable than me? Malaysia_Airlines_Flight_370_unofficial_disappearance_theories#Black_hole_or_meteor_strike tells us the following weird rubbish:

and by former Department of Transportation Inspector General Mary Schiavo, who, while appearing on CNN, said that "...a small black hole would suck in our entire universe so we know it's not that."[60]

I don't think Wikipedia should be telling our readers, backed by the authority of a senior official, that a small black hole can suck in our entire universe, which is utter rubbish, though for any number of reasons quite a few readers may not realize this (and that she was presumably joking). So I unsuccessfully tried to fix the problem a while back, explaining my actions here. But I discovered I was outnumbered 2 to 1, and after reading their seemingly unusual interpretation of what supposedly constitutes OR and after looking up their backgrounds, block logs, contributions, etc, I decided that this was one fight I would rather stay out of, per WP:NOTCOMPULSORY, etc. But I still think the thing as it stands is very wrong and probably violates half a dozen rules about things like undue weight, etc... Is there any way I can do something useful about it without risking an unacceptable degree of distress for myself, maybe by listing it somewhere as something that seemingly needs looking at, preferably by somebody with a better knowledge of how to handle this kind of thing than me (and who, unlike me, may well find it extremely easy to fix)?

Tlhslobus (talk) 08:33, 14 September 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia is not telling readers that "a small black hole can suck in our entire universe", only reporting, correctly, that someone said that. The quote is properly sourced. You may feel that it is trivia and not worth including in the article, but that is the sort of question of editorial judgement that needs to be settled by discussion on the talk page, and it seems that consensus is against you. If you are still not happy, see WP:Dispute resolution; but my advice would be to accept it. JohnCD (talk) 09:07, 14 September 2014 (UTC)
  • Well thanks for replying, JohnCD, though I won't try to pretend that I'm impressed by your analysis (though, for all I know, quite likely even with better analysis you might well have been forced to reach the same conclusion, as quite likely there is no facility of the kind I asked about).
  • For possible future reference, it might well have helped if your reply had been worded something like "You may well be right in theory, but in practice..."
  • Incidentally please feel free not to read the rest of this, as you're probably busy.
  • I certainly don't think the problem with the passage is trivia (and I am somewhat disturbed by the fact that you seem to think that's the problem - and that's not the only thing I think you've got wrong, but we don't have all day).
  • Instead I think it's something that can mislead significant numbers of our readers, and as such doesn't belong in Wikipedia, or at least not in its current unqualified form - and it would never be found in that unqualified form in any proper Encyclopedia precisely because proper Encyclopedias are not reckless about whether or not they may be misleading some of their readers.
  • Also, it isn't just misleading, it's potentially frightening to some readers. Admittedly it's now old news (and already was by the time I found out about it) so it's locking the stable door after most of the horses have bolted, but as far as I'm concerned even one child having a nightmare because nobody has said it's just a joke is far too high a price to pay for any supposed (and to me hard-to-imagine) benefit of leaving readers to try to work out that it's only a joke. And the cost may be more than nightmares, since the thought of the destruction of the universe might conceivably push somebody near the edge over the edge into depression and/or a nervous breakdown and/or suicide.
  • The fact that a quote is properly sourced is irrelevant in this case, per WP:IAR and probably per many of our other rules as well (though I haven't the time or inclination to go looking for them; WP:UNDUE and WP:FRINGE spring to mind as places to start looking, but quite likely don't apply due to some trivial technicalities).
  • Similarly the fact that what Wikipedia says is technically true is also irrelevant given that it's likely to be deeply misleading to many readers - in theory Wikipedia may not be telling readers that a small black hole can swallow the universe, but in practice that's precisely what it is telling many of its readers, and it's pretty outrageous that it's doing that.
  • And I'm pretty confident (although perhaps foolishly, as I've never tried, and, as you say, the so-called consensus is against me) that if I went through dispute resolution and stuck at it I would eventually win (but that would require me to think it worth the effort and distress, which I don't). Indeed I reckon (perhaps mistakenly, though at least here I do have a certain amount of experience) it's quite likely I would eventually win even without Dispute Resolution if I thought it worth the effort and distress, but again I don't. (The possible reason I might win is that if you give an unreasonable guy with an unreasonable case and with a lengthy block log enough rope he's quite likely to eventually hang himself, but, once again, it's just not worth the effort and distress).
  • Which may be unfortunate for some of our readers (and perhaps in theory also for Wikipedia's long-term reputation, if the world ever got to hear that Wikipedia had spent months seemingly telling the world nonsense about how the universe might be destroyed, though in practice it's seemingly extremely unlikely that the world will get to hear about it, still less pay attention to it)
  • On the other hand in theory I may eventually learn from this bad experience to suggest ways in which Wikipedia might improve its handling of this kind of case (but I rather doubt it, for all sorts of reasons).
  • Still at least I'll be able to tell myself that in this case I tried, if not my absolute best then at least my reasonable best, and the fact that I failed is more Wikipedia's problem than mine (though unfortunately it may be some of our readers' problem too, but I can't help that).
  • Anyway, thanks for your time. Tlhslobus (talk) 10:31, 14 September 2014 (UTC)

ANI[edit]

You were mentioned in a discussion on the Administrators Notice Board. Sorry that you got dragged into this. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) ☮ღ☺ 20:05, 23 September 2014 (UTC)

Wow, seriously? A female editor making a comment like the one that LB make has happened before? I'm really curious to know the details if you can remember or point me in the direction of where to look. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) ☮ღ☺ 03:13, 24 September 2014 (UTC)
I'll try and find the diff fairly soon. I should remind you that it was a more wounding comment than the one made about you.Tlhslobus (talk) 11:23, 24 September 2014 (UTC)
On reflection, Scalhotrod, I think I need first to check relevant privacy rules, and possibly seek advice, etc, which may take a little time. Sorry about that.Tlhslobus (talk) 14:52, 24 September 2014 (UTC)
No worries, I'm more curious than anything. Please do not go to any significant effort to find it and if it crosses the issues you say, then its probably not worth dredging up. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) ☮ღ☺ 20:12, 24 September 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for being so understanding, Scalhotrod. Tlhslobus (talk) 20:48, 24 September 2014 (UTC)

Thomas More[edit]

I will have a look, but I am not coming to this with any claim to specialist knowledge. The changes I made so far were (the way I recall it) wording changes (to a more encyclopedic style, I hope) without substantial meaning changes.--Andrew Lancaster (talk) 08:49, 2 December 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, Andrew, at least in my view you did indeed achieve a more encyclopedic style with your previous change (and skillfully managed to do so seemingly without provoking further controversy in what has been a contentious area), and a more encyclopedic style might well be precisely what's needed with the remaining problem sentences (which is why I thought you might be a good person for the job). But if it's too much hassle, please don't bother. Tlhslobus (talk) 15:37, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Policing Authority (Ireland)[edit]

Hi I noticed you have created a redirect for this page. It is on my unwritten list of things to do. Maybe this weekend I can get around to it. I was planning to do something like Private Security Authority which I created recently. It's only a start. Hoping some other editors will pick it up. Is it hard to remove a redirect? I'm rusty been on a wikibreak for more than 4 years so I'm still rusty. regardsCathar66 (talk) 22:23, 12 January 2015 (UTC) PS I'm not a guard just another middle aged aetheist.Cathar66 (talk) 22:27, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

Thanks, Cathar66. I'm not a guard either, just an early old-age eccentric variety of agnostic ignostic skeptic humanist :) There are two ways to deal with the Redirect. Either make it the main article, or create the main article under a different name and change the Redirect to point to the new article. In either case, ensure that all the current info in the current section (the Policing Authority section in the Garda Siochana article) is copied to the new article (unless you think some of that info is inappropriate, in which case you should presumably also correct or remove it from the existing section), and add just below the title of that section. Regards and Good Luck. Tlhslobus (talk) 22:45, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
ThanksCathar66 (talk) 22:51, 12 January 2015 (UTC)
Glad to be of service, Cathar66. If you need any more help, please feel free to ask - though obviously I can't guarantee that I'll be able to supply the correct answer, as unfortunately I haven't yet been elected Pope, and I consequently lack infallibility :) Tlhslobus (talk) 22:56, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

Greatest Generation[edit]

I couldn't figure out your motivation to post about it. But I took it as insulting a symbol of the Greatest Generation, and as another unnecessary distraction on that talk page, which I why I responded with my occasional hyperbole. Cheers.--Milowenthasspoken 04:56, 14 January 2015 (UTC)

Actually, Milowent, its (in my view) inappropriate use on that project may well also be some kind of insult to that generation, though I'm more concerned with what I see as the project shooting itself in the foot. Meanwhile your reply here leaves it unclear whether you still see the discussion as an unnecessary distraction on that talk page.Tlhslobus (talk) 05:19, 14 January 2015 (UTC)
You're still screwing around over on the GGTF talk page about that image? It seems a waste of your time, to be honest, its simply not that important either way. What kind of article do you work on, btw, do you ever write bios? I see Barbara Tizard needs an article, she died earlier this month.[1]. Cheers.--Milowenthasspoken 16:33, 14 January 2015 (UTC)
I stopped 'screwing around' on it quite some time ago, but I still try to answer as best I can when somebody there talks to me, as I just did. It's not that important in the sense that there seems to be no possibility of a consensus for change. On the other hand in terms of its potential for harming the project, it seems to me that it got a lot more important, given that it now seems the image can be used by enemies of the project as 'evidence' that women are 'at war', with 'the enemy' being male editors, who are implicitly being portrayed as 'like the Nazis'. Any member of the Wikiphallocracy should see it as a godsend. But with no prospect of consensus for change there's nothing I can do about that.
I don't normally write articles (I've produced 3 little-better-than-stubs in 6 years). Instead I amend things when I see a need for amendment that I'm able and willing to supply, or I raise the issue on Talk when I'm not able (as I did in this case, without success). So I'm afraid I won't be producing Barbara Tizard's biography, and I'm sure there are people out there, especially women, who are willing and able to do it far better than I ever could. Tlhslobus (talk) 16:59, 14 January 2015 (UTC)
But in any case, following my distressing experience of feeling 'mobbed' on the GGTF for what I thought (and still think) was a perfectly reasonable attempt to draw attention to what I saw was a problem (and what I now see as a potentially far worse problem), I think it would be pretty insane of me to go anywhere near a woman's biography (or any other woman-related matter), especially not one suggested by one of those by whom I felt so thoroughly and distressingly 'mobbed'. Tlhslobus (talk) 17:43, 14 January 2015 (UTC)

Redirects to user space[edit]

There can be no redirects from Article space to User space. Per R2, "Redirects, apart from shortcuts, from the main namespace to any other namespace except the Category:, Template:, Wikipedia:, Help: and Portal: namespaces" will be speedily deleted. Per WP:R#DELETE, a reason to delete a redirect is, "It is a cross-namespace redirect out of article space, such as one pointing into the User or Wikipedia namespace. " Bgwhite (talk) 09:23, 15 January 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for contacting me, Bgwhite. WP:R2 refers to "Redirects, apart from shortcuts", so after you originally deleted me, I checked Wikipedia:Shortcut, which states:
"Shortcuts are created for the convenience of editors. It is possible to create a shortcut for any page at all. The existence of a shortcut does not imply or prove that the linked page is a policy or guideline."
I found nothing saying it was illegal to create shortcuts to my own home page (for my convenience, and conceivably eventually that of other editors too), so I re-created the redirects as shortcuts. The idea would be to be able to quickly write in Talk Page discussions things like "No, I think you misunderstand what I'm trying to say - I've spelt out what I think at Slobus10'. I'll give you a little time to show where it says this is not allowed. If you can't or don't, I intend to recreate the shortcuts. If you can and do, then maybe we need to amend R2 and/or Wikipedia:Shortcut to make this clearer and avoid such future wasted effort by other editors. Tlhslobus (talk) 11:47, 15 January 2015 (UTC)
I now see your quote from the WP:R#DELETE section doesn't mention shortcuts as an exception, but the full version seemingly does ('The major exception to this rule are the pseudo-namespace shortcut redirects, which...', although it is just conceivable that I am confused by its technobabble, especially 'pseudo-namespace'):
  1. It is a cross-namespace redirect out of article space, such as one pointing into the User or Wikipedia namespace. The major exception to this rule are the pseudo-namespace shortcut redirects, which technically are in the main article space. Some long-standing cross-namespace redirects are also kept because of their long-standing history and potential usefulness. "MOS:" redirects, for example, are an exception to this rule. (Note "WP:" redirects are in the Wikipedia namespace, WP: being an alias for Wikipedia.)
If that doesn't actually mean shortcuts to User space are allowed, then we seem to need to make that clear, and perhaps to link to it from R2 and Shortcut. What do you think? Tlhslobus (talk) 12:00, 15 January 2015 (UTC)
Note that the only effect of banning the shortcut is to force me (and conceivably others) to inconveniently have to type User:Tlhslobus#Slobus10 (which I would presumably shorten to something like User:Tlhslobus#10) instead of Slobus10. But I guess there may be technical or administrative reasons why that would be preferable, but, if so, it should be clearly spelled out to avoid hassles such as this one. Tlhslobus (talk) 12:35, 15 January 2015 (UTC)
That is not the only effect. Non-notable people love adding wikilinks to their user page inside articles (see [2] [3]). Editors love doing redirects to user space articles that would never be an article on its own merits. Now that there is Draft space, that is also becoming abused in the same manner. Article space is for articles, not for users to publicize their own non-notable creations.
As for making the wording clearer, you will need to take it up on the MOS talk page. Bgwhite (talk) 21:16, 15 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for replying, Bgwhite. But:
1) The examples you show do not involve shortcuts.
2) You still have not shown me any rule banning my shortcut - the rules you have quoted both say shortcuts are allowed - so you at least appear to be currently misusing the power of automatic deletion. You have merely implied that at some future date I might abuse my shortcut by placing it into an article (which, if nothing else, seems to violate WP:AGF), something which I have never done in over 6 years here, and have no intention of doing, and which would presumably be quickly and rightly reverted if I ever did, either by a BOT, or manually if BOTs can't do it (which would somewhat surprise me, but may well be the case); and I would presumably be risking various sanctions if I did abuse it in this way. Of course if I wanted to abuse article space (which I don't), I still could, precisely as done in the two examples which you have shown (as neither involved shortcuts).
3) In any case the way to publicize non-notable views on Wikipedia is presumably just to create a Wikipedia essay, and it's perfectly legal to do so, as I just possibly might try to do in the currently not-particularly-likely event that I ever had the time and inclination to seriously try to publicize anything. But even then that's pretty unlikely, as it would probably make far more sense to create my own off-wiki blog, where I wouldn't have to worry about it being mangled or deleted by Wikipedians who disagreed with it. Indeed down the years I have noticed a significant number of unmolested links from article space to off-Wiki blogs - I've even created a tiny number of such links myself (NOT to any blog of mine) on the rare occasions when that seemed justified to me by WP:IAR, but I suspect it would not be too difficult to abuse the process, and I suspect it happens all the time. Indeed it might even be an interesting experiment to create a few such supposedly "justified" links, just to see how long they lasted (with or without the assistance of partners-in-crime to get round rules like 3RR), though I don't know who one asks for permission to perform such experiments (as I'm not sure that I would want the hassle of performing such experiments, but I definitely wouldn't want to risk getting into trouble by performing them without permission).Tlhslobus (talk) 16:50, 16 January 2015 (UTC)
4) Meanwhile I look forward to you showing me which rule actually does ban my shortcuts - if nothing else, finding such a rule, if it exists, will greatly facilitate the improvement to MOS which you suggested. If no such rule is forthcoming from you within a reasonable period, I will presumably attempt to recreate my shortcuts.Tlhslobus (talk) 16:50, 16 January 2015 (UTC)
A shortcut IS a redirect. Per WP:SC, A shortcut is a specialized type of redirect page. Redirects from article space to user space are forbidden. I'm done. You are Wikilawyering. This will go nowhere. Bgwhite (talk) 22:41, 16 January 2015 (UTC)
I'm sorry, Bgwhite. I am NOT Wikilawyering. You are persistently ignoring the fact, repeatedly pointed out above by me, that both the justifications you have used to delete my shortcuts explicitly state that shortcuts are an exception to the rule that Redirects from article space to other spaces are forbidden. You have not produced a single rule that contradicts this. But given your attitude, I guess I'll just have to seek advice from some admin or whatever. Tlhslobus (talk) 00:26, 17 January 2015 (UTC)
  • The problem is, Tlhslobus, I agree with Bgwhite. Drmies (talk) 02:12, 17 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Drmies, far from being a problem, that conveniently settles who's right, and saves lots of unnecessary further grief. But does that mean it's OK to amend the rules to say explicitly that shortcuts to User space are not allowed, to prevent similar hassle for others in future, or is that too simple? (By the way, if it is too simple, please feel free to just tell me so, if necessary without giving a reason if that would be awkward) Tlhslobus (talk) 02:44, 17 January 2015 (UTC)
Interesting--but this is probably not the place to write up such an emendation. If you start that discussion somewhere, please drop me a line; I'm interested in it for various historical reasons. Thanks, Drmies (talk) 03:02, 17 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Drmies. I'll let you know if and when I decide to have a go at amending it. Tlhslobus (talk) 03:22, 17 January 2015 (UTC)
And by the way, Bgwhite, you'll perhaps be glad to know that I accept Drmies's ruling that you are right, and I'm wrong. So sorry about that, though to be fair to myself, it seems to me that the problem was at least possibly mainly down to inadequate/misleading rules. If so, do you, by any chance, have any suggestion on how the rules should be re-worded to prevent similar hassles for others in future? Tlhslobus (talk) 03:22, 17 January 2015 (UTC)

I decided[edit]

to reply to your comment elsewhere, here, or I'd be running the risk of derailing the conversation there. It look like this:

There is absolutely no way that a gender-exclusionary Wikipedia area should be approved, period. That's what this is about. Carrite (talk) 05:50, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Carrite, on the other hand, is giving us a good demonstration as to why it might be desirable to have such a place. I'll have to remember to add "period" to my list of words that mean "in my opinion." Carptrash (talk) 05:56, 23 January 2015 (UTC)
Carptrash, are you being ironic or charitable or a bit of both? At least in my humble opinion, "In my opinion" usually suggests some degree of humility and awareness of one's own fallibility; "period" usually does not :) Tlhslobus (talk) 06:36, 23 January 2015 (UTC)

It appears to me that it is perhaps Carrite who is being ironic by presenting the strident, "here is the final word in the subject" typically male approach to this topic and showing us why it is that females might need a place to get away from that. Is he aware of that or not? I do have a list of words and phrase on my user page that I take to mean "in my opinion" when I use or hear them, and, as it turns out, I am very prone to frequently interjecting ("opinion)" in my writing - and speech for that matter. Deos this help? Einar aka Carptrash (talk) 06:59, 23 January 2015 (UTC)

Thanks, Einar. I entirely agree with you that Carrite probably shows why women probably need such a group, but I don't think he's being ironic, nor even typically male. I could of course be completely wrong and very unfair on him, but I still think it most likely that he's being arrogant and strident because that's how he is. And that's why his "period" is basically the opposite of a modest "in my opinion" - of course it is just his opinion, but that does not mean he is saying "in my opinion" rather than "this is the self-evident objective truth and anybody who doubts it blasphemes against my even more self-evident infallibility". I think most typical males, whatever they might think in private, know better than to appear so foolish in public - but of course such males are the silent majority, who keep their mouths shut and stay out of this kind of dispute, unlike Carrite. Anyway, it's been good to talk to you. Regards, Tlhslobus (talk) 09:00, 23 January 2015 (UTC)

Unspeakably naughty acts listed at Redirects for discussion[edit]

Information.svg

An editor has asked for a discussion to address the redirect Unspeakably naughty acts. Since you had some involvement with the Unspeakably naughty acts redirect, you might want to participate in the redirect discussion if you have not already done so. B (talk) 15:02, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

I'm at least temporarily semi-retired from Wikipedia[edit]

I'm at least temporarily semi-retired from Wikipedia, as it's proving too much of a distraction from more important things. I had intended to be fully retired at least until if and when I had completed some of those 'more important things', but so far that has proved too difficult. If I do succeed in completing 'some of those more important things', I plan to eventually return, though I'm not sure when (and I may eventually decide that returning would be a mistake).Tlhslobus (talk) 11:20, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

Alex Salmond[edit]

Please don't add or restore tabloid sources to this article. Per WP:BLPSOURCES they cannot be used. --John (talk) 22:43, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

Denis O'Brien article[edit]

You have done a fantastic job editing this article. Just a word to say thanks. It is now much more objective and balanced.Ofloinn12 (talk) 06:44, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Original Barnstar Hires.png The Original Barnstar
You have done a fanstastic job on Denis Brien article- It is now much more objective and balanced. Don't know the man and don't even live in Ireland but Wikipedia should be objective! Ofloinn12 (talk) 06:46, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Ofloinn12, your own work on it has been pretty good too, so I'll be returning the compliment in a minute or two. Tlhslobus (talk) 07:41, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Talkback[edit]

Nuvola apps edu languages.svg
Hello, Tlhslobus. You have new messages at Iryna Harpy's talk page.
Message added 00:42, 4 July 2015 (UTC). You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{Talkback}} or {{Tb}} template.

Iryna Harpy (talk) 03:31, 3 July 2015 (UTC)--Iryna Harpy (talk) 00:43, 4 July 2015 (UTC)

Temporarily copying discussions here for safe-keeping[edit]

I'm temporarily copying the discussion below here for safe-keeping, just to ensure I don't have any trouble finding it when it eventually gets archived. I also intend to copy any future amendments to it. Tlhslobus (talk) 07:24, 17 September 2015 (UTC)

I'm also adding my contribution to another discussion on the dame say.Tlhslobus (talk) 01:13, 19 September 2015 (UTC) And I've now decided to add the other contributions as well.Tlhslobus (talk) 01:52, 19 September 2015 (UTC)

Where can I find good arguments showing it is highly unlikely that we are created by nasty naturally-evolved 'gods'?[edit]

  • Short version: Where can I find good arguments showing it is highly unlikely that we are created by one or more nasty naturally-evolved 'gods' (unlike the non-evolved 'supernatural' 'gods' that are the only ones seriously criticised in Richard Dawkins's The God Delusion?
  • Longer Version: Can anybody please either provide me with, or tell me where I can find, good arguments to suggest that it is highly unlikely that we are created by a non-supernatural quasi-deity (or quasi-deities), one(s) who has/have presumably evolved somewhere in some place such as the Multiverse (if the Multiverse exists; or if not, then somewhere else) by some mechanism such as natural selection, who is/are presumably neither all-powerful nor all-knowing nor perfectly good, nor necessarily appropriate for us to worship, etc, and who for some reason has/have created us, quite likely as part of some kind of experiment running in some kind of computer simulation (with both the apparent age and size of our 'universe' thus probably being illusions, which, oversimplifying a little for the sake of brevity, would seemingly make them deceivers, while human suffering, if not also some kind of illusion-cum-apparent-deception, would seemingly make them at best indifferent to our suffering, and at worst make them sadists).
Please note that, unfortunately, in The God Delusion, Richard Dawkins seemingly barely touches on this question and concentrates on attacking the notion of a 'supernatural' or 'Skyhook' 'God'.
Further Details:
----------------
  • All Richard Dawkins seemingly says in The God Delusion about the kind of non-supernatural quasi-deity that has interested/worried me for many years are such things as:
  • chapter 1, page 33 (page numbers are from the 2009 paperback edition, though the version I actually read is an earlier version which may be slightly different) : "The Nobel-Prize-winning physicist (and atheist) Steven Weinberg ... is surely right that, if the word God is not to become completely useless, it should be used in the way people have generally used it, to denote a supernatural creator that is "appropriate for us to worship"
  • chapter 1, page 36: "... As I continue to clarify the distinction between supernatural religion on the one hand and Einsteinian religion on the other, bear in mind that I am calling only SUPERNATURAL gods delusional."
  • chapter 2, page 98-99: "...Science Fiction authors, such as Daniel F. Galouye in Counterfeit World, have even suggested (and I cannot think how to disprove it) that we are in a computer simulation, set up by some vastly superior civilisation. But the simulators themselves would have to come from somewhere. The laws of probability forbid all notions of their spontaneously appearing without simpler anticedents. They probably owe their existence to a (perhaps unfamiliar) version of Darwinian evolution: some sort of cumulatively ratcheting 'crane' as opposed to 'skyhook', to use Daniel Dennett's terminology. Skyhooks - including all gods - are magic spells. ..."
  • chapter 4, page 185-6: "...Or maybe the elusive crane that cosmologists seek will be a version of Darwin's idea itself: either Smolin's one or something similar. Or maybe it will be the multiverse plus anthropic principle espoused by Martin Rees and others. It may even be a superhuman designer - but, if so, it will almost certainly NOT be a designer who just popped into existence, or who always existed. If (which I don't believe for a moment) our universe was designed, and a fortiori if the designer reads out thoughts and hands out omniscient advice, forgiveness and redemption, the designer himself must be the end product of some kind of cumulative escalotor or crane, perhaps a version of Darwinism in another Universe."
  • I have already asked this question by e-mailing richarddawkins.net but got no reply, at least so far. I have also asked the question here at Yahoo answers, and received several answers, but none of them have proved satisfactory (as you can see there from the comments I've added in response to each answer).

Tlhslobus (talk) 08:16, 13 September 2015 (UTC)

Maybe it's Dawkins who doesn't really exist. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:28, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
You say that this fairy tale worries you. Why? KägeTorä - () (もしもし!) 13:33, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, KägeTorä. I don't have time to list all the reasons why it worries me (and it may not be responsible to do so publicly because of some of the crazy things I can see some people doing if they were to know about and take seriously some of the reasons that worry me). But the 'what kind of sadists...?' question I mention below in my reply to Asmrulz will do as a kind of illustration (although it's actually among the lesser of my worries). Of course if somebody can give me logical arguments that convince me it really is a highly improbable 'fairy tale' then I would have no reason to worry. However merely asserting that it is a fairy-tale will not convince somebody like me who has spent many years failing to either find such arguments or work them out myself (and if there were simple and obvious arguments I expect that I'd already have found them in Dawkins's book or elsewhere). Tlhslobus (talk) 06:51, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
The argument (well, one of) against a natural (itself evolved by a Darwinian process) creator is the same as that against a supernatural (eternal, outside time and space etc) one - namely, that no creation was needed because the complexity in the world today didn't depend on some improbable, carefully engineered initial microstate, but that it is inherent in the laws of physics themselves (kind of like the simple rules of the Game of Life give rise to complex patterns.) The latter argument is explored e.g. in The Recursive Universe Asmrulz (talk) 15:33, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Asmrulz, especially for the book name. Can you suggest anymore? However I should perhaps mention that just because something isn't needed (and it seems to me pretty self-evident that no creator is needed) doesn't necessarily make it highly improbable - to mention just one of several reasons why it worries me, it seems to me that every one of the probably infinite number of different kinds of possible Universe-generating Laws of Physics (or 'Cranes' in the language of Dawkins and his philosopher friend Daniel Dennett) that could enable us to evolve could also enable more advanced beings to evolve and create us - indeed I would tend to expect that most models of a Universe/Multiverse should lead to both an infinite number of uncreated 'beings rather like us', and an infinite number of 'beings rather like us' created by the kind of methods I've just mentioned. And if we happen to be among the latter infinity we then have such problems as 'what kind of sadists would put us in a world as full of suffering as this one?'. Should you have arguments and/or book names that specifically answer that sort of problem, I'd much appreciate it. (I could also raise 'Copernican Principle' and other such objections to arguments based on notions like "THE laws of physics" and "THE universe" (or "THE world today", to use your expression) as opposed to "our currently observable sub-universe" and "our current least unreliable but known-to-be-at-least-partly-wrong-and-mutually-incompatible approximations (such as our mutually incompatible theories of General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics) to whatever are the true laws of physics that apply at least in this part of our sub-universe at this time", but that can perhaps await another day.) Tlhslobus (talk) 05:33, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Tlhslobus, I agree, it's a sort of modal and/or plausibility argument. The Recursive Universe I got from the further-reading section in Reality: A Very Short Introduction. The argument was more about super-civilizations simulating (as opposed to creating) one another. But I wouldn't be surprised if many of the same arguments would work for your scenario, so check out Reality and its bibliography, too. I'm afraid I can't be more helpful than this, I'm one of those who read a lot but retain little and are endlessly fascinated by whatever they read last, as was the case with Poundstone's book :) Asmrulz (talk) 15:16, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks very much, Asmrulz - you've been very helpful. One hopefully final supplementary question. You started off by saying "The argument (well, one of)...". Does that mean you know of other arguments that might be useful in this context (of showing that evolved creators are highly unlikely), and that are not already covered in the references you've given me above (and that might not already be covered in the very useful references to the simulated reality debate given below by Ssscienccce and Paulscrawl)? If so, and if it's not too much hassle, a bit more on those lines might be helpful (but if it's too much hassle then please don't bother, as you've already been very helpful). Once again, thanks and regards, Tlhslobus (talk) 06:04, 17 September 2015 (UTC)
Tlhslobus: no prob. I meant with the phrase that I suspect there might be other arguments, I'm just not aware of them Asmrulz (talk) 23:14, 17 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for that clarification, Asmrulz, and thanks again for all your help. Tlhslobus (talk) 23:10, 18 September 2015 (UTC)
The conventional assumption is that God pre-existed creation. How that would work is anyone's guess, but just trying to prove or disprove the existence of God is a futile exercise. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 17:33, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Baseball Bugs. I've no interest in the 'conventional God' (nor in what has been conventionally assumed about the said 'God'). As for existing 'before creation', that's rather easy - you and I are currently existing before the 'observable universes' that we will unwittingly create (and inhabit) next time we dream - and much the same is true of any evolved being that is capable of creating other kinds of virtual universes, such as those discussed in Simulated Reality.Tlhslobus (talk) 06:32, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
The conventional wisdom is that if God exists He is a mathematician. The answer to the question "Why are the laws of physics as they are?" usually given is that if they weren't we wouldn't be here. But as Fred Hoyle has pointed out, there is a lot more to it than that. The relationships that govern forces and masses are counterintuitive - not what we would expect. Again, if they weren't so there could be no life. Substances generally have greatest specific gravity as solids, but water is the exception. Its peculiar molecular structure means that it has the greatest density at about 37 degrees F. That's why ice forms a protective skin and stops a body of water from freezing solid, with disastrous consequences for life. As Hoyle observes, "It's a put - up job". Again, whatever people say it is impossible for life to come into being naturally - it's just too complicated. It was created once, miraculously. That's why we have no evidence of life elsewhere in the universe. There is no scientific explanation for all the miracles recorded in the Bible from turning the water into wine to the Resurrection. Neo - Darwinists talk about the blind watchmaker, but looking at the variety of life forms about and how superbly fit for purpose they are it is obvious there is a guiding purpose behind it all. 80.43.196.11 (talk) 18:23, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, 80.43.196.11. But as most unbelievers would say, there are plenty of possible explanations for such 'anthropic coincidences' that do not require a creator - in one of the above quotes, Dawkins mentions at least two such physical 'cranes' (the ideas of Martin Rees and those of Smolin), basically different variants of a Multiverse. However saying creator(s) are not necessary is not the same as saying they are highly unlikely (indeed almost all variants of a Multiverse seem logically to lead to the evolution of an infinite number of different kinds of creators - indeed in some ways we are some of those creators, in the sense that we unwittingly create (and inhabit) one kind of 'observable universe' every time we dream). Tlhslobus (talk) 06:23, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
There's no scientific explanation for the miracles in Harry Potter either, there's no such thing as "too complicated", and every species that didn't "fit together" dies. 24.57.54.196 (talk) 20:25, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Those who argue that natural evolution is "impossible" have really no comprehension of how long a million years is, let alone billions. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:43, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
The idea that the universe was created with a false history by a powerful deceiver is called omphalism. For some reason that redirects to "omphalos hypothesis", but it's not a (scientific) hypothesis: it can't be tested because it "predicts" that everything appears as though it were false. The article mostly talks about the god of Genesis, but the problem is the same regardless of the imagined nature of the creator. -- BenRG (talk) 02:36, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, BenRG. The modern version has nothing to do with Genesis or whether 'Adam' had a belly-button (omphalos in, I think, Greek) or other such fairy tales. It's called Simulated Reality (or 'Simulated Multiverse' when it's listed as one of Brian Greene's 9 types of Multiverse in our Multiverse article). Whether it (or anything else to do with Multiverses and/or the 'Cranes' of Dawkins and Dennett) is a testable scientific hypothesis is of very little interest to me - what I would like is some logical argument to convince me that it is highly improbable (and to say it's not testable by scientists tells me nothing about whether it's improbable or not). Tlhslobus (talk) 06:00, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
It is humans who invented the creation stories, across all cultures. They're not quite "false" histories, but more like "the best we could do at the time." Which, if you think about it, is the state of science. We don't "know" anything with absolute certainty. The best we can do is to cite available evidence. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 03:20, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
That isn't what I meant by false history. I meant fake fossilized cyanobacteria in rocks, fake incoming microwave radiation with subtle inhomogeneities consistent with the predictions of inflationary cosmology, and so on—evidence planted for no possible purpose but to mislead us about the history of the universe. -- BenRG (talk) 05:10, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
I've heard some extremist creationists say that stuff. It's baloney. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 05:18, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Baseball Bugs. But it would be helpful if you could perhaps give us the logic underlying your assertion that it's baloney, preferably also letting people like Nick Bostrom know why his ideas about Simulated Reality are logically baloney, and also letting leading atheist thinkers like Richard Dawkins and Daniel Dennett (the antithesis of creationists, let alone 'extreme creationists') know, so that the next edition of 'The God Delusion' can be improved with these useful logical insights that they mysteriously failed to notice up to now, thereby helping to create the current discussion. After all the whole point of this entire discussion is to try to show logically and convincingly that it is baloney, rather than merely asserting that it is. Tlhslobus (talk) 08:02, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Well, let's put it this way: If God deceives, then nothing we can observe can be trusted. However, if there is consistency in the observations, then we might suppose that, at worst, God is deceiving with consistency. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 08:20, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Baseball Bugs. I won't use the term 'God' - it carries too much confusing emotional baggage. If, perhaps as part of some experiment (or game, or whatever), our hypothetical creator(s) want(s) us at least sufficiently deceived to be uncertain whether we are created or not, then he/she/it/they presumably will make the deception sufficiently consistent to maintain our uncertainty. That's an argument for a deception being reasonably consistent, not for deception hypotheses being baloney. If the deception is reasonably consistent, then our pseudo-reality can probably be trusted in the short to medium term for most ordinary everyday purposes (and in any case in practice we probably have little choice except to work on that assumption most of the time, whether it's correct or not, and I don't want to go into possible exceptions - I mentioned in an earlier reply to somebody else that this might not be responsible - and it would also be very long to write). But as it happens others are coming up with good references for me to research - so thanks again for your time and efforts. Regards. Tlhslobus (talk) 05:43, 17 September 2015 (UTC)
Some say that we may be living in a simulated reality. Bostrom even claims that, unless we're unlikely to reach a technology level in which we can create such simulations or if a comparable civilisation would likely not create a large number of such simulations, then we are probably living in one.
That would fit your description, created by naturally-evolved gods. Ssscienccce (talk) 06:52, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Ssscienccce. Another way of putting my question is 'Can anybody give me or point me to arguments that might convince me that it's almost certain that Nick Bostrom, among others, is wrong, (or, in other words, highly unlikely that he's right)?' Tlhslobus (talk) 07:10, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
An answerable Reference Desk question! You might try Are You a Sim? by Brian Weatherson. The Philosophical Quarterly Vol. 53, No. 212. (Jul., 2003), pp. 425-431. Register and read for free (not sure if PQ participates), or ask for on the Resource Exchange. Abstract:
Nick Bostrom argues that if we accept some plausible assumptions about how the future will unfold, we should believe we are probably not humans. The argument appeals crucially to an indifference principle whose content is unclear. I set out four possible interpretations of the principle, none of which can be used to support Bostrom's argument. On the first two interpretations the principle is false; on the third it does not entail the conclusion; and on the fourth it only entails the conclusion given an auxiliay hypothesis which we have no reason to believe." -- Paulscrawl (talk) 08:47, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
P.S. You'll also want Bostom's The Simulation Argument: Reply to Weatherson. The Philosophical Quarterly, Vol. 55, No. 218 (Jan., 2005), pp. 90-97. -- Paulscrawl (talk) 09:55, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Weatherson's argument is on Bostrom's site, no need to register: http://www.simulation-argument.com/weatherson.pdf
Not that it's helpful, tried for half an hour to understand his second interpretation, with all the philosophical jargon and use of "philosologic". Should have spotted the problem straight away: " ∀Φ: Cr(Φ | fΦ = x) = x Bostrom doesn't formulate this more general principle, but it is clear he intends something like it in his argument". dead giveaway when a philosopher writes that... Ssscienccce (talk) 15:51, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Other critiques of Bostrom's 2003 article, Are You Living in a Computer Simulation?open access publication – free to read, abound. PhilPapers has a short curated list; and Google Scholar says it is cited by 361. Now do your reading, sim! -- Paulscrawl (talk) 09:30, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks very much, Ssscienccce and Paulscrawl - you've both been very helpful. Regards, Tlhslobus (talk) 05:49, 17 September 2015 (UTC)
The difference between the Bible and Harry Potter is that the Bible (by and large) recounts fact and Harry Potter is a work of fiction. Has Baseball Bugs ever been inside a church? For the believer, God exists for everyone. Jesus Christ is the redemptor of all mankind. From what I know of Aquinas, much of his work is an explanation that God exists outside space and time. No doubt at some point he states that God created space and time. Using Occam's razor, his views are far more plausible than those of people who speculate on multiverses, multiple deities of various hues and other such nonsense. 80.43.217.22 (talk) 11:00, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, 80.43.217.22, and my apologies (to you and to the others involved in this part of the debate), as I should perhaps have saved you all some time and effort by making it clear that my question is not looking for arguments that an evolved creator is highly unlikely on the grounds that the traditional un-evolved creator is supposedly for more likely due to such arguments as those of Aquinas or Augustine of Hippo or Occam's Razor. I'm broadly satisfied that the traditional un-evolved creator is pretty unlikely (though perhaps not quite as unlikely as Dawkins and Dennett think, but I won't go into that), but that, even if I'm wrong on that, I would expect such an un-evolved creator to be just as worrying as an evolved one, for much the same reasons as I find an evolved one worrying. So sorry if my failure to make that clear caused you to waste your time. Thanks for your efforts, and regards. Tlhslobus (talk) 07:13, 17 September 2015 (UTC)
"the Bible (by and large) recounts fact" [citation needed]! Large parts of the Bible are not even purported to be factual - see e.g. the Song of Solomon. And even those parts that form a more-or-less coherent narrative are, at best, "inspired by real events". Historical science provides a very different picture than the Biblical narrative. No world-wide flood, no Egyptian exile, no sun standing still over Jericho. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 09:20, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
I don't know how Thomas Aquinas crept into this. Catholic theology was laid down by St Augustine, who was a prolific writer, and I believe this subject was discussed in his major work "The City of God". That is, St Augustine of Hippo, there may be others. 78.145.22.185 (talk) 15:39, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Yes, there's Saint Augustine of Canterbury for one. Alansplodge (talk) 21:26, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
I thought that archaeologists had recently excavated the remains of the Ark on Mount Ararat. The flood legend is common to many ancient religions - they can't all be wrong. When the wind blows in a certain way it does heap up the waters of the Red Sea just as described in the account of the escape from Egypt, and artefacts have been found on the seabed. How can historical science prove the Israelites were never held captive in Egypt? It's no less plausible than the captivity in Babylon, which is well documented. 80.43.224.191 (talk) 13:00, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
how and where did life start? you are not answering the question by UFOing the question. you are just moving the question to another realm. life started here will end here after many heated arguments and waste of resources and lives. Right now we are in the middle of "WINNING". the last time we were deceived we were deceived mathematically. celebrating the start of the 3rd millennium worldwide on 1-1-2000 by the entire world , around the world fireworks on TV, the Pope asking us to come to Rome to celebrate on 12-31-1999 and warning us not to come the next year-the correct year for the new millennium-they all came together for the PERFECT STORM of deception in math where there is only one right answer. This was and is a miracle that was thought out before it came to be. This is possible because this is all a dream that will play out and be revealed to the doubter upon what we call death. When many coincidences happen throughout your life experience you grow knowing you "see" differently than those around you because of the hints along THE WAY. They are here for all to see for all to understand for all to come together. This is so simple few will understand.166.177.251.76 (talk) 19:04, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
This seems incredibly OT, but see Flood myth, which includes a section called "Claims of historicity", and Searches for Noah's Ark; perhaps also Outburst flood and Noah's Ark. There may have been some localised flooding in some areas. There was definitely no worldwide flood which required "two of every living thing, and seven pairs of every clean creature" on an ark. And no, no concrete evidence of such an ark has ever been found and whichever version you follow [4], there's a good chance someone in the time of the ark had no chance of building one presuming it would have even floated. Sure people find Noah's ark all the time. They are also always finding new ways to get net energy out of plain water and ways to perform cold fusion. Nil Einne (talk) 19:58, 16 September 2015 (UTC)

"Can god create" question[edit]

Can a omnipotent (All can do) god create a chair which is made only from Iron but also only from Copper? Thanks. Ben-Yeudith (talk) 12:32, 13 September 2015 (UTC)

There is no reference that can answer this question authoritatively. Anyone who claims to have the answer would just be speculating. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 12:56, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
There is a god that could do that. His name is Erwin. Widneymanor (talk) 13:00, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
That "thought experiment" is hopelessly flawed. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 03:24, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
(ec) See Omnipotence and the Law of non-contradiction. People who argue for or theorize about an omnipotent deity typically exclude the logically impossible from the definition of "omnipotent", i.e. even an omnipotent god cannot do what is logically impossible, which is what you're asking about.
If omnipotence were to include the ability to do the logically impossible, for example to create something that is exclusively made of iron, but also of copper, then the very notion of "omnipotence" itself is logically absurd, at least in conventional formal logic. The concept could perhaps be considered according to dialetheism, which rejects the Law of non-contradiction. - Lindert (talk) 13:01, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
If you could define what the molecular structure of such an object would be, that would be a start in the right direction. Although the question "Can He create a chair?" by itself would also be a good place to start. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 17:19, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
  • The problem is not a limitation on God, but that the question itself is incoherent, regardless of the posited agent. What is a chair that is all copper and all iron at the same time? The fact that humans can string noises together and tolerate cognitive dissonance doesn't mean that a string of words in any way applies to reality. For example, anyone who actually knows what copper and iron are is going to have to also accept that 26=29. If you accept that 26=29, then per ex falso quodlibet, you'll also have to accept that God does not exist. μηδείς (talk) 20:57, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Or, if he can make a chair that is entirely copper and entirely iron, then he can simultaneously exist and not exist, and the him that exists is simultaneously both omnipotent and limited. But I speculate. I'm applying logic to a being to whom logic does not apply; anyone who can always have existed and will always exist, and who created the universe and is therefore separate from the universe but is also omnipresent throughout it, would have no difficulty with perpetual motion, which we consider impossible. So, we don't get to decide what God can and cannot do; the opposite is more likely. -- Jack of Oz [pleasantries] 21:52, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
God already both exists and does not exist. If you're a believer, He exists for you. If you're non-believer, then He does not exist for you. And since His absolute existence or not is unprovable, whether God exists for you is the closest you can come to the absolute truth of the matter. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 23:33, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
I don't think perpetual motion is particularly on-point here. Perpetual motion may be physically impossible, but it's not logically impossible. Most philosophers consider the two things distinct, though I suppose the distinction has been challenged (all philosophical distinctions get challenged).
There are respected theological currents that consider God omnipotent but hold that that does not imply that God can do the logically impossible. --Trovatore (talk) 21:59, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
If you really want to get into it, the two relevant philosophers are Aquinas, who holds that God is logical, and Al Ghazali, who holds that logic does not limit God, and that God does not do what is good because it is good, but that what is good is good because God demands it. μηδείς (talk) 22:04, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Your second link points to a disambig page. I suppose you mean Al-Ghazali? --Trovatore (talk) 22:15, 13 September 2015 (UTC)
Hmm, I was not aware they used hyphens in Arabic, but I did read Al Ghazali quite a few years back. μηδείς (talk) 01:13, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
To be clear, I wasn't criticizing your transliteration, just giving a link that works given the current state of Wikipedia. --Trovatore (talk) 07:24, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
I find nearly all of these answers profoundly unsatisfying. Where did the laws of logic and mathematics come from? It seems to me that the existence of things such as six specific perfect shapes (I mean Platonic solids - isn't that a valid term for them?) in four dimensions (if one accepts that) are the proof of the objective existence of some higher plan and order to Creation, which are not inferred from the world we see around us, and not susceptible to any possible change by any human or even advanced alien agency. A defining attribute, perhaps the most defining attribute, of God would be the ability to create such laws, which implies the ability to change them. I don't pretend this is an answer, but only a comment that I think the question still is not answered here. Wnt (talk) 16:25, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
There are only five Platonic solids. I suppose you're counting the spherical ball as your sixth? (Note that the sphere is not a solid at all, but a two-dimensional surface.) --Trovatore (talk) 23:51, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
@Trovatore: Nay, I said in four dimensions - like if you put four dodecahedrons at the vertices of a tetrahedron, then bend in the 4th dimension until they come into contact. When I was young I worked them out on my own, without ever having seen another source on them, and so I use them as my example of something that exists solely as an idea, but has an objective reality that can be discovered independently by other people (this seems like an obvious thing to me, but just try arguing it with a Marxist!)
If logic and mathematics had to "come from" somewhere then why not God himself? --Golbez (talk) 17:41, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Ah, I see where the reference to Thomas Aquinas comes from. Mathematicians can solve problems by supposing up to ten dimensions. Although we can't see the majority of them, they follow the rules of dimensionality. Proof that not only does God exist, He is a mathematician. Many apparently impossible concepts may not be - cf Schrodinger's cat. As has been pointed out, a professor of philosophy is just a very slow - moving waveform. 78.145.22.185 (talk) 17:37, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
If theologians can consider something that is simultaneously all human and all divine, why not all copper and all iron: :) - Nunh-huh 06:09, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
But does this all-iron and all-copper chair have one nature, or two simultaneously? We could have created a whole new heresy! Iapetus (talk) 09:47, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
Brass is a monophysite alloy - the old twelve - sided threepenny bits were all - copper and all - tin. These dodecagonal (one for each disciple) heresies are going to be resurrected as the new pound coin. 80.43.224.191 (talk) 12:18, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
The boring answer to "Where do the laws of maths come from?" is that they are derived from a set of "axioms" - basic rules which seem to be obviously true, but which you can't really prove or disprove (for example "There is an infinite number of numbers" or "You can draw a straight line between two points"). Axioms are still human inventions, but what counts is whether or not they seem to accurately represent the universe (for a long time, we thought parallel lines never cross, until it turned out that space was curved, and a different mathematical system had to be used by physicists, and mathematicians still argue whether it's possible to choose from between an infinite number of identical choices). You might ask where the axioms come from, but the answer is probably "They just are" in most cases – there's no reason for there to be an infinite number of numbers, except that there's also no reason why there shouldn't be. Smurrayinchester 15:00, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
This is more or less the standard formalist line. I too once thought as you do.
Now I find formalism extremely lacking as either a description of mathematical practice or as an explanation for its successes.
The formalist considers the axioms to be primary and the objects the axioms describe to be unimportant. But (especially in set theory) this is just not so. The intuitive picture of the objects described by set theory is simple and clear (the so-called von Neumann hierarchy). The literal set of accepted axioms, Zermelo–Fraenkel set theory, is complicated to the point of being Baroque, and not even close to a canonical set of axioms corresponding to the picture (arguments can be made for both weaker and stronger systems, though the arguments for the stronger ones are ultimately more convincing).
The reasons for the axioms really don't have much to do with physics, certainly not in set theory, but really not even much in geometry. I have been told (I have not really studied them) that the Euclideans were explicitly talking about an ideal realm of geometry, and not about the physical world. However, being foundationalists, they hoped to reduce geometry to a simple set of axioms, and thought they should be able to prove the parallel postulate from their other axioms, though it's not entirely clear to me why they thought that was likely. As it turned out, they were wrong about that; the parallel postulate cannot be proved from the other axioms. But it is nevertheless true, in the sense that it holds in their motivating picture, which we now recognize as corresponding to manifolds of zero curvature.
Somewhat similarly, the axiom of choice is obviously true, in spite of not being provable from the other ZF axioms. If you give assent to the motivating picture of set theory, it is very difficult to avoid giving assent to the axiom of choice, notwithstanding its formal independence from the axioms of ZF. --Trovatore (talk) 05:17, 16 September 2015 (UTC)
@Smurrayinchester: The idea that the laws of math "just are" puts them in the position of the first cause or unmoved mover. My impression is that monotheists generally believe God is in that position; he is not just someone playing some crappy free game on the Web who can place an archery range or a tower but not a bordello or a concentration camp; he is a superuser, a programmer, not the captive of the parameters laid out for him by some impersonal and unaccountable "just is". Atheism need not make that placement, but it is a puzzle that it imagines that rules of thought are the prime mover, yet the prime mover is incapable of thought! Wnt (talk) 18:34, 16 September 2015 (UTC)
  • "Can a omnipotent (All can do) god create a chair which is made only from Iron but also only from Copper?". One issue here is what, if anything, is meant by words like "omnipotent" (see for instance Omnipotence paradox, and thanks for the link, 88.2.8.193) and "god" (see, for instance, Ignosticism).
But much of the discussion here seems to take it for granted that it is logically impossible for a chair to be made only of copper and also only of iron. Much of the discussion also seems to assume things like that god cannot both exist and not exist. And so on. But one editor above has already shown one way in which 'God' (arguably) does and does not exist (he exists for believers and not for unbelievers). There are arguably plenty of others. For instance if our universe is the result of chance and/or logic, then arguably chance and/or logic is then the creator of the universe, and is thus arguably 'god', and arguably chance and logic are things that do and don't exist, meaning that they exist in some senses, and don't exist in other senses (chance arguably exists, but not in the same way that my chair exists), much like an awful lot of other things. For instance we all know that Santa Claus doesn't exist, yet we can find a Santa Claus in most major stores at Christmastime - similarly all Walt Disney's non-existant creatures such as Mickey Mouse exist in Disneyland, a person you meet in a dream doesn't exist yet he or she may actually be your best friend when you wake up, and even if the dreamperson has no counterpart in the awake world, he or she arguably still has a kind of existence while you are dreaming (and he or she can arguably also have an existence of sorts afterwards in your memory). And so on ad infinitum.
Carl Sagan (in Broca's Brain, if I remember right) once wrote that Thomas Aquinas had said that God couldn't create a triangle whose internal angles didn't add up to 180 degrees, before claiming that he (Sagan) could easily perform this task, adding "(on a curved surface)"; a Thomist (a supporter of Thomas Aquinas) would probably reply that Sagan had cheated by moving the goalposts and/or that a triangle has straight sides by definition and that Sagan's alleged triangle has curved sides and is thus not a triangle. So who's right? How would I know, as how would I know who decides what counts as a 'true' triangle? That assumes that expressions like 'true triangle', 'true god', 'true Santa', 'true reality', 'true existence', etc, have some kind of 'objective meaning', an assumption which is far from self-evident.
Fuzzy Logic is one set of ideas intended to address this sort of issue (as also are such ideas as the already mentioned Ignosticism). The chair I'm sitting on is solid to me, but to a neutrino it's almost entirely empty space, so it arguably isn't solid to a neutrino. Glass is solid to me but a photon (a 'particle' of light) has no difficulty going through it, so glass arguably isn't solid for a photon. Music may be loud to me and silent to a deaf person. And so on. It seems perfectly possible to create a chair that seems distinguishable from iron but indistinguishable from copper to some kinds of being and that seems indistinguishable from iron but distinguishable from copper to some other kinds of being, and I've no reason to suppose that an 'omnipotent god' is needed to do this. In which case it seems arguably true (especially to devotees of things like Fuzzy Logic) that the chair is made only of copper for some and only of iron for others - whether that Fuzzy Logic argument is 'correct' may well be as difficult (and perhaps impossible) to decide 'objectively' as the similar argument about whether Sagan or the Thomist is 'objectively correct' about Aquinas's triangle.Tlhslobus (talk) 01:03, 19 September 2015 (UTC)

ArbCom elections are now open![edit]

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ArbCom elections are now open![edit]

Hi,
You appear to be eligible to vote in the current Arbitration Committee election. The Arbitration Committee is the panel of editors responsible for conducting the Wikipedia arbitration process. It has the authority to enact binding solutions for disputes between editors, primarily related to serious behavioural issues that the community has been unable to resolve. This includes the ability to impose site bans, topic bans, editing restrictions, and other measures needed to maintain our editing environment. The arbitration policy describes the Committee's roles and responsibilities in greater detail. If you wish to participate, you are welcome to review the candidates' statements and submit your choices on the voting page. For the Election committee, MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 14:09, 24 November 2015 (UTC)

How margin of error works — Statewide opinion polling, Democratic Party primaries, 2016[edit]

User All4peace (talk) has initiated a discussion, on the article talk page on English Wikipedia about how we present MOE.

I would very‐much appreciate your participation ! Info por favor (talk) 23:32, 25 November 2015 (UTC)

MOS:TIES[edit]

I suggest you actually read the section to which you linked. TIES only applies to topics from a specific English-speaking country. Since German ships are necessarily from Germany, they do not have a strong tie to an English-speaking country. The argument that Ship A only ever fought against English Speaking Country B, so the article on A should use B's variant was shot down a very long time ago. Parsecboy (talk) 11:55, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

I not merely read the section, I explicitly quoted it in the edit description, and now in Talk. I had already replied to this in the Talk Page. The relevant rule does NOT say "From" a particular English-speaking country, it says "with a strong link to a particular English-speaking country." And one of the examples it gives is Institutions of the European Union (British or Irish English) - I should point out that the institutions of the European Union are NOT 'from' Britain, and they are NOT 'from' Ireland. I have already explained the strong link of this warship to Britain and to Britain's history. On the other hand there is no link whatever to US English and no reason at all why US English should be used in this article, in a way that is likely to unnecessarily annoy British readers.
So perhaps you could give us a link to where 'this argument was shot down a long time ago'. It would not surprise me if it was - Wikipedia can usually be relied upon to produce questionable and arguably perverse decisions like that, which are contrary to the plain meaning of its own rules and can be relied upon to annoy and waste the time of yet more editors into quitting Wikipedia, as well as unnecessarily irritating its readers. But even supposing the decision was taken by some properly constituted consensus, I still see no reason why US English is to be preferred to British English in this particular case. Meanwhile I'm copying both your comment and my reply to the article's Talk Page where it belongs, while I ponder whether or not to restore what still seems to me to be the more sensible spelling in this context. Tlhslobus (talk) 12:32, 2 June 2016 (UTC)

ArbCom Elections 2016: Voting now open![edit]

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The Arbitration Committee is the panel of editors responsible for conducting the Wikipedia arbitration process. It has the authority to impose binding solutions to disputes between editors, primarily for serious conduct disputes the community has been unable to resolve. This includes the authority to impose site bans, topic bans, editing restrictions, and other measures needed to maintain our editing environment. The arbitration policy describes the Committee's roles and responsibilities in greater detail.

If you wish to participate in the 2016 election, please review the candidates' statements and submit your choices on the voting page. MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 22:08, 21 November 2016 (UTC)