Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Humanities/2007 January 20 to 31

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January 20[edit]

Real Estate & Software Industry[edit]

Hi I see a peculiar trend in India recently: Land prices in small cities where Software Parks are proposed to come has increased 10-20 times in the last one year, and almost by 30 times in the last 5 years.... (surprising but true: In 2005 - Rs 20,000.. 2006 Rs. 200,000) Reason: 1. Software professionals earn huge salaries (3x times than the average salary; in many places, children aged 25 earn more than their parents) 2. Scarcity of Land, Middlemen 3. Bachelors share the apartment, hence rent also has increased.... 4. Software salary increases by 10-15% each year...

All on SOFTWARE.. but less than 0.1% are in software industry....

If this trend continues: 1. What will happen to the average middle class? 2. Where will this rise stop? 3. Who really gets benefited? 4. What will happen to Software Industry

Has this happened, or happening in other parts of the world?

I have great regards for the people here in wikipedia.. I would request people to discuss this issue. (btw, I could not purchase a property.. it keeps on rising) Slmking 01:03, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

This is in fact a global phenomenon, though the rate of increase in most places has not been quite as rapid as the rates you are citing. See our article Real estate bubble. The causes for the rise in real estate prices in many countries around the world are disputed, but many commentators believe that it is connected to historically very low interest rates around the world, in many cases lower than the rate of inflation, which make it easier to borrow and to bid up prices. In countries other than India, the rise in real estate prices has not been limited to areas where software is developed. However, in the United States, some of the most dramatic price rises and the highest average real estate prices occur in Silicon Valley and other parts of the San Francisco Bay Area, which are centers of software development.
It is impossible to offer a sure answer to most of your questions, which involve predicting the future. This is beyond the ability of even the most accomplished Wikipedians. It is possible to answer question #3 with some assurance: Existing owners of property benefit, as do real estate agents. Marco polo 02:30, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
Simple supply and demand - fifth grade level economics. A company moves to an area that has employees. Those employees want to live near where they work. The people currently living there don't really want to leave. So, you have at least two people interested in the property, the current owner and the incoming employee (there are likely many more people interested in the property). Demand just went up. Since supply cannot increase without someone adding folding the space-time continuum and increasing the amount of land around the company, price goes up. Why does it happen before the company moves in? People want to jump in early and make the first buck. It is happening where I live right now because Google said there is a slim chance they will move out here in a few years. --Kainaw (talk) 07:18, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Fidel Castro[edit]

Why is not shown that Fidel Castro was born in Honduras?

Do you have any evidence for this? User:Zoe|(talk) 03:43, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Why Fidel Castro is not shown that he was born in Honduras?

Because he wasn't born in Honduras. He was born on a sugar plantation in what is now the Holguín Province of Cuba. Bhumiya (said/done) 06:08, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
To be precise, he was born on August 13 1926, on a sugar plantation in Birán, near Mayari in Holguín, then part of Oriente province. What on earth gave you the idea he was born in Honduras? Are you perhaps confusing this with Holguin? Clio the Muse 09:09, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

¿Why is not shown that Fidel was a baseball pitcher? (El Mundo, November 28, 1946. University of Havana. Pitcher: F. Castro) If his fastball and curveball had been better would he have played for the Yankees or Senators? Edison 07:06, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Castro wasn't a great baseball player. He was a decent school player and a big fan of the sport. But most of the rumours of his prowess are based on an urban myth which has him trying out for New York Yankees. [1] As for him being born in Honduras.... what?--Zleitzen 10:21, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
I thought it was the Washington Senators. User:Zoe|(talk) 04:48, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Cincinnati Reds would have made more sense. Although actually in the 1950s the Reds briefly changed their name to the Redlegs to avoid being confused with those other Reds... Herostratus 06:40, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Maybe he was holding out for the team to change its name to the "Cincinnati Agrarian Reformers." Edison 02:13, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Czech Republic- Interesting Facts[edit]

What are some interesting facts about the Czech Republic? Does anyone know something really interesting that they could go in depth about? It could be about anything unusual or interesting, doesn't matter. Thanks!

This is homework, right? Why don't you just read Czech Republic and find something there? Bhumiya (said/done) 06:14, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Pilsner beer, the beer style that is the most popular in the USA, was invented there. It was invented in the town of Pilsen, hence the Pilsner name. Czech people drink more beer per capita than any other country in the world. Zeno333 07:54, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

There are so many interesting things that it is difficult to know what to single out for particular mention. What about a surprising piece of trivia? Joseph Goebbles, Hitler's Minister of Propaganda, once attempted suicide for the love of a Czech woman, in defiance of all Nazi race theories. Her name was Lida Baarova, a one-time actress, who died in 2000. When Goebbles' wife, Magda, learned of the affair she complained to Hitler. Goebbles, rather than give up Baarova, offered to resign; and when Hitler refused to accept this, the love-struck minister attempted to kill himself in October 1938. On Hitler's express orders Baarova was then ejected from Germany. Clio the Muse 08:57, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
Were Czech really such untermensch? Wouldn't they, as slavs, be on a higher racial hierachical level than, for instance Jews and non-Europeans? (The artcile claims that they were, though.) 惑乱 分からん 14:47, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for your comment, Wakuran. I'm not sure if this is really the place to go into the niceties-and contradications-of Nazi race theory, but try to imagine, if you will, a pyramid, with the Germans at the peak and the Jews at the base. Slavs, which includes the Czechs, were certainly above the Jews, though still not that far removed from the base. Though even here generalisations are difficult, with pyramids within pyramids. The 'lowest' of all the slav groups, in the Nazi scheme of things, were undeniably the Poles and the Russians. Clio the Muse 23:35, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
see Budweiser Budvar. User:Zoe|(talk) 04:50, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
  • One study concluded that (presumably young) Czech men are on average the tallest in the world, at 6'2.
  • The Czech Republic took the gold at the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics, in men's ice hockey, in the first time that NHL players were allowed to compete. This was a huge boost to Czech national morale, and it severely injured Canada's national pride. Vranak
  • Which study? I heard that the tallest men were Montenegrins, Dutch and Scandinavian. See Body height. 惑乱 分からん 17:34, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
I read it in the Miscellania section of The Globe and Mail last year, I believe. And yes, our article on body height does suggest otherwise. Vranak
And I heard the tallest people in the world were Scots. User:Zoe|(talk) 04:50, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

One interesting thing about the Czech Republic is that they don't use personal checks there, which is ironic, I suppose. Also, few Czechs have ever used toaster ovens or tumble driers, preferring to let their clothes dry on a rack and use slice toasters. At Christmas-time, they buy carp from big vats on street corners, and if you ask, the vendor will bop on the head for you so you don't have to keep it in the bathtub until you want to eat it. The word "dollar" comes from the German name of a place where silver was mined. There is a sizable Vietnamese population due to friendly relations between Vietnam and Czechoslovakia during the Communist era. If you go to Příbor, birthplace of Sigmund Freud, you can stay at the Freud Hotel off Freud Square and try not to giggle. There's a restaurant in Zbraslav that was the home of the guy who wrote the "Beer Barrel Polka;" it's now a museum that plays that song day in and day out. In Prague, you can stand at the corner of Wilsonova and Washingtonova -- two streets named after American presidents. The National Monument has the largest equestrian statue in the world (of Jan Žižka). Vinohradská Street in Prague has had at least six different names in its history, including Stalin Street during the Stalinist era and Schwerin Street during the Nazi occupation. -- Mwalcoff 04:25, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

The most interesting thing (to me) about the Czech Republic is that the English name of the country (and of the language) does not use Czech orthographical conventions, but Polish. There is no "cz" in the Czech language (or if there is, it isn't pronounced "ch"). That's a Polish thing. The haček (eg. Č) is what the Czechs use for this sound. This was discussed here in some detail. JackofOz 02:39, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Logical contradiction...?[edit]

Doesn't such a law "insulting Turkishness" inflict upon the Turkish people the very denegration the authorities wish to prevent? -- 08:36, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Article 301 is certainly a matter of some controversy in Turkey itself, though there has long been a deep sensitivity in the country about aspects of its national identity, made, it would seem, even more acute by the present application to join the European Union. Clio the Muse 09:29, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes, it denigrates the Turkish people. t h b 23:57, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Title of a divorced wife of a younger son of a duke or marquess[edit]


In styles in the UK it does not say what the title of a divorced wife of the younger son of a duke/marquess is.

If Lord William Hope marries Jane Smith she becomes Lady William Hope

If she divorces him, what is her style and title then? Thank you 19:30, 20 January 2007 (UTC)

A long time ago, I read a mid-20th-century British manual of styles, which contained advice on that very point. From what I remember of what it said, it seems that according to a strict interpretation, a divorced women is not entitled to retain aristocratic honorific styles to which she was only entitled through marriage -- but at that time, there was in fact relatively little real-world social opposition to a divorced woman continuing to refer to herself with such honorifics (without the accompanying formal precedence, of course), as long as she hadn't yet remarried. But there's an additional complication in the particular case that you asked about, in that a divorced woman was usually considered entitled by etiquette to still call herself "Mrs. Smith" or "Mrs. Mary Smith", but no longer to call herself "Mrs. John Smith" (with her ex-husband's first name). According to that general rule of thumb, the ex-wife of an aristocrat couldn't still call herself "Lady William Hope", and it would have been very incorrect to shorten to "Lady Hope", since that would have a completely different meaning. (see []) I'm not sure what the solution to this dilemma would have been, or whether there was even a good solution... Churchh 20:47, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
You might want to raise this on the talk page of Styles in the United Kingdom or Forms of address in the United Kingdom—if anyone's going to know, it's the editors on those pages, and if there's an agreed-upon answer, it should be written into the article. Newyorkbrad 21:11, 20 January 2007 (UTC)
As I understand these matters title would be awarded as follows, as long as the lady in question remains unmarried, though she would lose all precedence gained by her former marriage:
The former wife of a Peer- Jane, Viscountess Hope.
The former wife of a Baronet or Knight- Jane, Lady Hope.
The former wife of an 'Honorable'- The Hon. Mrs. William Hope.
The former wife of a younger son of a Duke or a Marquis- Lady William Hope. Clio the Muse 00:20, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
If a divorced commoner woman keeps her ex-husband's surname - which is not a question of entitlement but social convention - the former "Mrs William Hope" would become "Mrs Jane Hope". (This is true of widows too). However the divorced wife of the younger son of a duke or marquess could not become "Lady Jane Hope", nor could she remain "Lady William Hope". The title "Lord William Hope" is itself merely a courtesy title, since the younger sons of a duke or marquess are not peers. Any ex-wife of such a person who seeks to still use her ex-husband's title is holding on to gossamer-thin trappings. JackofOz 00:43, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

January 21[edit]

06:59, 3 February 2007 (UTC)06:59, 3 February 2007 (UTC)~~== Happiness ==

On a scale of 0 - 10, how happy is the universe in general. Or if thats too hard, how happy is our world>

There is no answer to that. Happiness is subjective. --Wooty Woot? contribs 01:10, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
The universe is very happy. Let's leave it at that. --The Dark Side 01:23, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
The best description of universe's mood I've heard is 'benevolently indifferent'. So I guess that's a 5. Vranak
Well, more accurately, . Someoneinmyheadbutit'snotme 07:02, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Happiness is only a brief moment of life when your expectations coincide with reality... Or even better, your perception of it. — Kieff 06:09, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I recall reading an account of the Greeks, hoping to find the happiest man that ever lived. It was conceded that for a man to be worthy, they would have to have died. One did not want to give the label to a happy man, only to find they lose their smile. I think it is in Herodotus's History.

Transferring the Greek argument to analysing the universe, we won't really know until it ends. However, I observe that whenever my political enemies open their mouths, as they often do, the universe seems to laugh. DDB 12:31, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Compared to what?≠Bumblefart 07:16, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

What is happiness?

Longest formal title[edit]

Does anyone know what the longest formal title is or has been? I found the Russian one for Nicholas II of Russia at Nicholas_II_of_Russia#_note-title. That one is the longest I've ever seen. Read out aloud from the beginning, and don't look at the end until you get there... So are there any longer than that? Carcharoth 01:39, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I found Style of the British Sovereign, and the table here shows that Mary and Philip had quite a long style: "By the grace of God, King and Queen of England, France, Naples, Jerusalem, Chile and Ireland, Defenders of the Faith, Princes of Spain and Sicily, Archdukes of Austria, Dukes of Milan, Burgundy and Brabant, Counts of Habsburg, Flanders and Tyrol". Carcharoth 01:44, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I think you will be really hard pressed to find a formal title longer than that accorded to Nicholas II by the Russian Constitution of April 1906. Clio the Muse 02:13, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I may have found one: Zengi The emir, the general, the great, the just, the aid of God, the triumphant, the unique, the pillar of religion, the cornerstone of Islam, ornament of Islam, protector of God's creatures, associate of the dynasty, auxiliary of doctrine, grandeur of the nation, honour of kings, supporter of sultans, victor over the infidels, rebels, and atheists, commander of the Muslim armies, the victorious king, the king of princes, the sun of the deserving, emir of the two Iraqs and Syria, conqueror of Iran, Bahlawan, Jihan Alp Inassaj Kotlogh Toghrulbeg atabeg Abu Sa'id Zangi Ibn Aq Sunqur, protector of the prince of the faithful. Flamarande 02:18, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Time to invoke a word count? :-)

"We, Nicholas the Second, by the grace of God, Emperor and Autocrat of all the Russias, of Moscow, Kiev, Vladimir, Novgorod, Tsar of Kazan, Tsar of Astrakhan, King of Poland, Tsar of Siberia, Tsar of Tauric Chersonesos, Tsar of Georgia, Lord of Pskov, and Grand Duke of Smolensk, Lithuania, Volhynia, Podolia, and Finland, Prince of Estonia, Livonia, Courland and Semigalia, Samogitia, Białystok, Karelia, Tver, Yugra, Perm, Vyatka, Bulgaria, and other territories; Lord and Grand Duke of Nizhny Novgorod, Chernigov; Ruler of Ryazan, Polotsk, Rostov, Yaroslavl, Beloozero, Udoria, Obdoria, Kondia, Vitebsk, Mstislav, and all northern territories ; Ruler of Iveria, Kartalinia, and the Kabardinian lands and Armenian territories - hereditary Ruler and Lord of the Cherkess and Mountain Princes and others; Lord of Turkestan, Heir of Norway, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein, Stormarn, Dithmarschen, Oldenburg, and so forth, and so forth, and so forth."

Nope. We, Nicholas comes out on top! :-) Carcharoth 02:27, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Bahh, not fair, Nic had a bigger title because the Russian empire was simply bigger, letting him to claim more "place/territory names" like King of Poland etc. Hmm I noticed that there is no Protector of the Faith in his titles Flamarande 02:33, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Protector of the Faith? He is now, in the eyes of the Russian Orthodox Church, also Saint Nicholas the Passion Bearer. Clio the Muse 03:00, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

The Philosopher George Berkeley wrote an essay that is commonly known by its short title "The Analyst". It's full title is this however...

THE ANALYST; OR, A DISCOURSE Addressed to an Infidel MATHEMATICIAN. WHEREIN It is examined whether the Object, Principles, and Inferences of the modern Analysis are more distinctly conceived, or more evidently deduced, than Religious Mysteries and Points of Faith." Zeno333 03:15, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Then there's the title of a Fiona Apple album that is generally shortened to just When the Pawn. The full title is...

When the Pawn Hits the Conflicts He Thinks like a King What He Knows Throws the Blows When He Goes to the Fight And He'll Win the Whole Thing 'Fore He Enters the Ring There's No Body to Batter When Your Mind Is Your Might So When You Go Solo, You Hold Your Own Hand And Remember That Depth Is the Greatest of Heights And If You Know Where You Stand, Then You Know Where to Land And If You Fall It Won't Matter, Cuz You'll Know That You're Right Dismas|(talk) 09:42, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Though I don't have any to hand I suspect the longest title would be that of a ruler who had some claim to many different lands, eg king of Aragon and King of Castille, King of England and Scotland, etc (when he was seperately ruler - or even not ruler, King of England was also Duke of Normandy - of those different territories) as they tended to include all the titles for each with lots of flowery sub-titles. AllanHainey 17:04, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Another candidate could be Beatrix, by the Grace of God Queen of the Netherlands, Princess of Orange-Nassau, Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld, Marquis of Veere, Marquis of Vlissingen, Count of Katzenelnbogen, Count of Vianden, Count of Diez, Count of Spiegelberg, Count of Buren, Count of Leerdam, Count of Culemborg, Viscount of Antwerp, Baron of Breda, Baron of Diez, Baron of Beilstein, Baron of the town of Grave and the lands of Cuijk, Baron of IJsselstein, Baron of Cranendonk, Baron of Eindhoven, Baron of Liesveld, Baron of Herstal, Baron of Warneton, Baron of Arlay, Baron of Nozeroy, Hereditary Lord and Seigneur of Ameland, Lord of Besançon, Lord of Borculo, Lord of Bredevoort, Lord of Bütgenbach, Lord of Clundert, Lord of Daasburg, Lord of Geertruidenberg, Lord of Hooge en Lage Zwaluwe, Lord of 't Loo, Lord of Lichtenvoorde, Lord of Montfoort, Lord of Naaldwijk, Lord of Niervaart, Lord of Polanen, Lord of Steenbergen, Lord of Sint-Maartensdijk, Lord of Sankt Vith, Lord of Soest, Lord of Ter Eem, Lord of Turnhout, Lord of Willemstad and Lord of Zevenbergen. AecisBrievenbus 19:07, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

But the most poetic title is probably "His Excellency President for Life, Field Marshal Al Hadji Doctor Idi Amin, VC, DSO, MC, Lord of All the Beasts of the Earth and Fishes of the Sea, and Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in General and Uganda in Particular", also known as "Last King of Scotland". AecisBrievenbus 19:11, 1 February 2007 (UTC)
Queen Beatrix would beat Nicholas II in a word count, I'm afraid, Carcharoth. 169 words against 141, 878 letters against 803. Beat that ;) AecisBrievenbus 00:10, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Jesus's Age at time of Death[edit]

I would like to know scriptures that help support what I've been hearing concerning the Savior's age when he was crucified. Was Jesus 33 1/2 years old?```` —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Whitrd777 (talkcontribs) 03:16, 21 January 2007 (UTC).

There is no universal agreement on Jesus' age when he was crucified. See Chronology of Jesus. BenC7 03:20, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

For a good book on the entire chronology of Jesus read Ernest Martin's book "The Star That Astonished the World". Copyright 1991 ISBN 0-945657-88-9 It demonstrates what the Star of Bethlehem really was, and shows exactly when Jesus was born using historical and astronomical data. The book shows that Jesus was born September 11th, 3 BC. The book concludes that Jesus died in the year 30 AD. With that in mind Jesus would have been 31 years old at his death, since he would have died in the first part of the year 30. Keep in mind that there is no year "0". Zeno333 05:36, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Do you want the age in earthly or heavenly terms? t h b 23:55, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

When has anybody trusted scriptures for historical context?


Isn't Article 301 basically a step toward fascism? And won't it be a major hurdle in Turkey's admission to the EU? Being a U.S. citizen, I'm having trouble wrapping my head around the idea of Article 301 being a good idea since I can't think of an example of it in U.S. law. Dismas|(talk) 07:03, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I looked at the article here on Wikipedia and it is terrible. Until it contains a section explaining why Article 301 was created and why it passed, there is nothing in the article worth reading. Sure, it may be a bad law, but without knowing the origin of the law, you are basing your opinion of the law on your experience, not the Turkish experience. --Kainaw (talk) 07:12, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Um... Okay... So, could you explain it to me better than the article does? Dismas|(talk) 07:15, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
I don't live in Turkey. I live in the United States where the mass media only talks about other countries if we are bombing them or some Hollywood idiot is adopting another child from there. So, I have no idea what prompted the passage of Article 301. However, I can explain further why I do not like our article here. What if our article on the Patriot Act only said: "The Patriot Act makes it a crime to do anything that the government may think is linked to terrorism." No mention of 9/11. No mention of the "War on Terror". It doesn't matter if the article is truthful or not. If it doesn't include the reason for the law, it is a terrible article. I believe it was third grade that they taught the 5 W's: Who What Where When Why. Our article on Article 301 covers Who (Turkey), What (Article 301), Where (Turkey), When (Recently), Why... Who knows? --Kainaw (talk) 11:36, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Now that I've read the Amnesty International article on it, I have a much better understanding. Turkey wants to join the EU. However, they had laws that kept them from doing so. One of them was that it was a crime to criticize the government or Turkey in general. That was changed from "criticize" to "denigrate". Of course, they actually changed Turkish words that we translate into those English words, but that's not the point. It appears that the law writers thought they made it good enough for the EU. However, the concept of denigration is open for debate and has caused a lot of problems. So, did the law writers purposely use a vague term so they could harass the media with the law or did they honestly think it was good enough? --Kainaw (talk) 11:50, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
The page on Article 301 is descriptive, informative and reasonably detached in tone, and thus far from 'terrible' by any objective reckoning. It is, I would however agree, somewhat lacking in political background and a general explanatory context. I think it is important to avoid the use of politically loaded terms like 'fascism.' As I have already said, there is a high degree of sensitivity in Turkey about aspects of the country's national identity and historical experience, reflected most acutely in issues over the Armenian question. Application for membership of the EU is clearly drawing out some of the deeply rooted conflicts and divisions in Turkish national consciousness; between, if you like, Turkey-in-Asia and Turkey-in-Europe. Look in detail at 301 itself, where you will find no better expression of these contradictions. Can you imagine a true 'fascist' law which, on the one hand, threatened preceived insults against the state and nation while, on the other, specifically exempted expressions of thought intended to criticize? Clio the Muse 09:15, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Article 301 is not incommensurate with laws in liberal western democracies. In Australia, in NSW, the Teachers Code of Conduct (2004) allows the Department of Education to do as it pleases if it disagrees with any public statement by an employee. A teacher can sacked, or even declared invalid with no substantive cause other than to name themselves on a blog.

In the UK, a new law, Civil Contingencies Act 2004, allows crown ministers to modify legislation without reference to parlaiment.

Such laws are resisted by civic rights activists. However, experience suggests that liberal democracies feel these laws are adequate. DDB 12:22, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

DDB, could you please provide the proper links for the laws you just mentioned? Flamarande 13:22, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I agree with Kainaw. Not only writings but many persons uphold their positons as authoritative without an inkling of the past or care to. Barringa 12:40, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

In the US, the Alien and Sedition Acts (specifically "An Act for the Punishment of Certain Crimes against the United States") may be the best example of an attempt to stifle criticism of the government. StuRat 07:46, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

NSW Teachers Code of Conduct 2004, Fundamental Laws of England, last paragraph before list, and last paragraph shows the extraordinary powers of an English Parlaimentary Minister.

I'm afraid my teachers code of conduct link might not work for you, but there is not much discussion on it. It was introduced to make it easier to dismiss non functioning teachers. The government and union being friendly (politically aligned), for the moment DDB 08:00, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Battle of Thermopylae[edit]

In what book of histories Herodotusaffirmed that in thew battle of Thermopylae the persians casualties were 20,000 dead? --Vess 10:45, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Vess, you will find the figures for the Persian dead at Thermopylae in Book Eight, section 24 of The Histories, where Herodotus writes: Now, Xerxes, had made some prior arrangement as regards the bodies of the men of his army who had died at Thermopylae. About twenty thousand men had fallen there, but he left about a thousand of the corpses and buried the rest in mass graves, which he covered in earth and leaves to to disguise them from the fleet. Clio the Muse 14:11, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Any relation...?[edit]

Is there any relation between September 11, 2001, the date of the World Trade Center attack and September 11th, 3 BC, the accepted date (according to Ernest Martin's book "The Star That Astonished the World". Copyright 1991 ISBN 0-945657-88-9) of the birth of Jesus Christ? -- Barringa 12:30, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I don't think there is an 'accepted date' for the birth of Christ, whatever Ernest Martin may say. There are many suggestions, depending on how people work it out. The most reasonable suggestions I've seen only narrow it down to a season or month in a year, not a day. Skittle 12:47, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
This may be true for believers but what about non-believers and not only non-believers but anti-Christians as well? Barringa 13:16, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Nothing about my reply was based on faith either way. Some believers think 4BC, some think other dates. In fact, some types of believer are far more likely to believe a specific date than that the date is unknown. Whatever an 'anti-christian' is, I don't see why they would disagree with the rest of scholarly debate. Skittle 20:54, 21 January 2007 (UTC) I strongly recommend you look at Chronology of Jesus, specifically Chronology of Jesus#Birth. The closest date to yours they offer is 17th November, and that is based on symbolic religious reasons. Skittle 21:00, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
The relation between them is simply that they happened, or might have happened, on September 11, as did lots of other things. See September 11 for a list of lots of other things that happened on various September 11ths. However, it sounds as though you may be more interested in reading 9/11 conspiracy theories.--Shantavira 15:16, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes, they are both the eleventh day of the ninth month. Of course, they used different calendars back then. t h b 23:54, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Bear in mind, the choice of 9/11 by Al Quaeda was probably arbitrary, and the relationship to the emergency number a mere convenience. I'm sure they would have been 'happy' with remembrance day, New Years day or any of many others. The reality is, Al Quaeda are not a religious organisation (well, no more than KKK) and Christ's birthday would have little meaning to their leadership.DDB 07:24, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Given the shift from Julian to Gregorian calendars, one of them wasn't September 11th. Also, religious Muslims wouldn't use either dating system. --Dweller 16:44, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm sure I've read that all three (9/11/01, 9/11/3 and Ernest Martin's book - already cited in other queries here today!) were predicted by Nostradamus and the Bible Code. Mighty Antar 01:06, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

A more interesting coincidence is that it is the date that Henry Hudson first landed on Manhattan. JChap2007 04:26, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

The Danish attitude to Nelson after the Battle of Copenhagen[edit]

The Battle of Copenhagen was 'pell mell' with twice as many Danes killed or wounded as Brits. Yet a great deal of respect was accorded Horatio Nelson after he had committed what in today's terms would be atrocities. Is that because the Danes were sympathetic to Brit religion, and had no time for Russian Orthodox? What were the factors at play? DDB 12:52, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Atrocity, in the modern understanding, is the killing of unarmed civilians, wounded and/or surrendering soldiers, needless destruction on a massive scale, etc. Reading the article you will notice that none of these happened at the Battle of Copenhagen. It was a relativly clean battle and the casualities were not that high (More or less 2000 dead in a battle at that time? Peanuts). As for the religious aspect, you will realize that, most of the time, religion plays second fiddle for (inter)national interrests and politics. Flamarande 13:17, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
The task before Nelson and Parker was to break the Armed Neutrality of the North before the Russian fleet could be released from port by the thaw of the spring ice; and because of Nelson's initiative the Royal Navy succeeded brilliantly at Copenhagen. It was a legitimate military act, and I find the suggestion of 'atrocity' quite perplexing, unless one happens to view war itself in such terms. Clio the Muse 14:36, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
The question of what is or is not an atrocity aside, I don't think we've answered the question here. The Armed Neutrality may have been neutrality in name only, but it still might be possible to see Britain as the aggressor. Copenhagen was not bombed, but bombing was threatened. There was a threat to burn ships which may or may not have hauled their colors. One point in answer could be that the Danes did not then see Nelson's actions as a ruse de guerre but were of the opinion, as the adjutant sent with a reply to Nelson expressed: "Your Lordship's motives for sending a flag of truce to our Government can never be misconstrued, and your subsequent conduct has sufficiently shown that humanity is always the companion of true valour." Also, were the Danes really enthusiastic about about fighting for the tyrant, or were their sympathies more with Britain?—eric 01:46, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

My apologies for not phrasing the question well. Atrocity is the wrong word. I think the replies show that the question is understood. Denmark and Russia, as allies, might not have had low brow support. England and Denmark both being protestant. It might have been thought, by the low brow, that it was good to not have to support Russia. I certainly don't think there was some great clerical conspiracy. I'm puzzled as to why the Danes seemed to bear the situation so equanamonously. DDB 07:15, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Hi, DDB. I think, Eric is right: you do deserve a fuller answer to your questions. I was slightly thrown off balance by your use of the 'a' word, losing sight, perhaps, of the bigger picture. Anyway, here we go. The most important thing is to understand the strategic situation at the time, with Britain fighting a war without any Continental allies. The Royal Navy was the only effective fighting force it possessed, and British ship-building depended on the continuing supply of wood, pitch and rigging hemp from the Baltic. It also had to prevent war materials reaching the French. The Armed Neutrality of the North, engineered by the eccentric Tsar Paul, in the huff with the British over the occupation of Malta, threatened to cut off the Baltic altogether. Just imagine a situation in 1940 where Spain and Portugal combined to cut off access to the Mediterranean to the British, then you will see the real dangers of 1800. More than that, the combination of Russia, Prussia, Sweden and Denmark-Norway (then combined in one kingdom) threatened the Royal Navy with a force of some fifty ships of the line, at a time when it was already facing the Armed Aggression of the South. And it wasn't just a case of these nations wishing to prevent interference with legitimate trade: Tsar Paul was insisting that he had every right to send military supplies also to France, and had impounded British shipping to exert additional pressure. The task before the British was to prevent any link-up between the 'Neutrality' navies before that Baltic ice finally thawed. This was to be achieved by forcing open the gate, so to speak, by removing Denmark-Norway from this dangerous equation. Parker was sent on a mission of 'armed diplomacy', rather than aggression as such. It was only when this failed did Nelson launch his attack, and under the most difficult of circumstances (some of his ships running aground) and under fire from shore batteries as well as Danish naval forces. Copenhagen was a hard fought contest, and in some respects a close run thing. Although the Danes lost some 2000 killed, Nelson did not get off lightly, losing 1000 or so of his own men. The Danes may have been left aggrieved, but they still put up a good fight, and they appear to have shown some admiration for Nelson and his single-minded courage. But in any event, they were no longer able to resist in the face of a possible full-scale bombardment of their capital. The victory, as I have already said, achieved the objective intended. With reference to the religious dimension you have highlighted, as Flamarande has said, this was of little or no importance in international diplomacy at the time. Britain was later allied with Orthodox Russia, Lutheran Prussia and Catholic Austria against Napoleonic France. Clio the Muse 09:18, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Wow! Thank you Clio. Very much appreciated DDB 11:25, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

You are very welcome. Clio the Muse 22:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

accurate wine map of france[edit]

where can i get an accurate map of france , showing the wine producing regions , is the map on this site accurate? 15:04, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

The map is accurate, though somewhat difficult to read and interpret. Here is a slightly better one [2]. Clio the Muse 15:14, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

beneficiary term for the yet to be born children of my beneficaries[edit]

When a beneficiary is designated there is a legal term that indicates, in the case of a minor child beneficiary, what that childs' children would be called.

Thank you.

JohnLimburger 15:58, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

The beneficiary's children? t h b 23:52, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

The closest thing is probably "the issue of my son/daughter, the beneficiary." Keep in mind that we do not provide legal advice (see disclaimer). Neutralitytalk 04:19, 22 January 2007 (UTC)


I wish to construct a gnome killing facility or otherwise rid the village I live in of gnomes. I would appreciate any workable methods to drive off gnomes for ever. 16:19, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Don't be a gnomophobe! 惑乱 分からん 16:32, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
I imagine a sturdy hammer is sufficient to deal with most examples of garden gnomes. However, destroying other people's gnomes will be considered criminal damage in most jurisdictions, so I strongly advise against this course of action. Gandalf61 16:37, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
It's not garden gnomes - I wan't rid of gnomic things - you could describe it as a plague. Some sort of gnome repellent would be good. 17:33, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
There's no place like Nome. There's nothing like gnomes. Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore. Clarityfiend 17:38, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Gnomic truth coming from a native of the City of Gnomes with gnomoid relatives: Beyond magic, there's no way of getting rid of them. ---Sluzzelin 17:45, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
I propose that we start the Human Gnome Project immediately! Interbreed and destroy the purity of their bloodlines for victory! --Kurt Shaped Box 18:16, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Enjoy! t h b 23:51, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Such destruction might be considered ignomious.Edison 04:52, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

And remember: "Gnome-man is an island". StuRat 07:31, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
  • According to the Harry Potter Lexicon: "Every so often, a garden must be "de-gnomed," which involves grasping the gnomes by the ankles, swinging them around a few times to disorient them, then tossing them out of the garden. Gnomes are rather dim, so when they realize a de-gnoming is going on, they all come rushing up out of their holes to see what's going on, making them a lot easier to catch." If they are really as dim as the page states, any killing facility would do, but making your home/garden/village unattractive to gnomes would be far more effective and less cruel/bloody. - Mgm|(talk) 12:26, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Gnomes are attracted to certain garden features. By eliminating them, gnomes will gnot be encouraged. Well-gnown gnome attractors include: hanging Aeolian chimes, rustic seats, sundials with mottoes, witches' balls, crazy paving, and Bible-theme or Shakespeare-theme gardens. --Wetman 20:23, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Witches ? Wouldn't that be warlocks ? StuRat 20:57, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Hang on here -- if all the GNOMEs were eliminated, wouldn't we all have to switch to KDE or something? --Anon, January 22, 2007, 21:12 (UTC).

He must live in Redmond, Washington. Is that you Bill? Clarityfiend 23:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Wrong OS. Try again. --Anon, Jan. 23, 21:27 (UTC).
Oh, so Microsoft doesn't want to stamp out free software? Is black white now too? Clarityfiend 01:51, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Dragonball Z question[edit]

Moved to entertainment

Reichstag building[edit]

What borough of Berlin is the Reichstag (building) located in? - Patricknoddy 2:35pm, January 21, 2007

The Stadtbezirk (district or borough) is Mitte. The Ortsteil (quarter?) within Mitte is Berlin-Tiergarten. ---Sluzzelin 19:44, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Ghana opinion on Israel/Palestine conflict[edit]

What is Ghana's opinion on the Israel/Palestine conflict?

-I choose to remain Anonymous —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 19:37, 21 January 2007 (UTC).

Please, anyone?

Just to let you know that you are not being ignored, and I tried to trace sources of information on the subject, with not a great deal of success, I'm sorry to say. The Wikipedia page on the Foreign relations of Ghana is, to say the least, not very helpful, and a google search has turned up little of positive value. There is a paper by Zach Levy, entitled The Rise and Decline of a Special Relationship: Israel and Ghana, 1957-1966 published in the African Studies Review for April 2003, which might provide you with some useful background information, though it says little about contemporary attitudes. Do you have a Ghanaian embassy or high commission near where you live? If so, their press office may be able to assist. Sorry not to have been of greater help. Clio the Muse 00:09, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Here is a link to Ghana's embassy in Israel, which provides a brief history of Ghana-Israeli relations. Here is a speech from 2000 by Ghana's ambassador to the United Nations. About midway through the speech, the ambassador addresses the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. His language is very diplomatic, but he clearly indicates that Ghana supports a peaceful solution to the conflict. Both this statement and the history presented on the website of Ghana's embassy in Israel suggest that Ghana aims for an evenhanded approach, although the website of the embassy in Israel refers to Israel's "seizure" of Arab lands, a word that implies some criticism. Marco polo 00:53, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Don't know about Ghana specfically, but during the late 1950s and early 1960s, Israel provided training, infrastructure work, and low-level development aid to several African countries, in accordance with Ben Gurion's vision of breaking out of Israel's regional isolation by forming contacts with a range of countries beyond the Arab world. After the 6-day war of 1967, the Arabs devoted a great deal of diplomatic effort to persuading sub-Saharan African nations to break off relations with Israel (on the grounds that Israel was "occupying the territory of an African state", Egypt, though none of the territory was actually in Africa); and in the late 1960's and the 1970's the OAU spent an enormous amount of time and energy dealing with political minutiae of the Arab-Israeli conflict (I think that some sub-Saharan African governments ultimately came to see this as a distraction from issues more important to them...). AnonMoos 10:36, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

You might also want to see this story on BBC online from the 2006 FIFA World Cup, when a John Paintsil, a Ghanaian player who played club football for Hapoel Tel Aviv scored a goal, and caused controversy by celebrating by waving the Israeli flag. --Dweller 10:46, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

British Peerage system[edit]

If I'm reading the page on Barons correctly, the noble title of Baron is not hereditary, at least not anymore; rather, the Queen can, through a Letter patent or the writ, make virtually anyone a Baron ... is this right? Wolfgangus 20:10, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Hello, Wolfgangus. Yes, the meaning and significance of the title has changed in England over time. From the great feudal landlords of the early Norman period, by the fourteenth century barons could be created by letters patent issued by the crown, thus beginning the break between title and landed power. By the eighteenth century this mode of creation had become the dominant way of elevating an individual to the rank of baron. In essence it has become a means of creating civil honours, awarded by the monarch, but acting upon the advice of the prime minister of the day. Clio the Muse 20:47, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

There's a very good reason why I have a reference desk crush on you, Clio the Muse; your answers are consistently clear and complete - examples for us all to follow. Thank you for the verification. Wolfgangus 21:31, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Ah, kind Sir! You make me blush. Clio the Muse 23:09, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

It's not quite true that the title of baron is no longer hereditary. No hereditary barons (or any hereditary peers) have been created for a good few years, but those baronies that were created as hereditary titles still exist as hereditary titles (and there are far more of them than any other grade of the peerage), and there's no reason that more hereditary barons could not be created. All life peers have been barons, although there's not strictly any reason why higher life titles could not be given. -- Necrothesp 23:52, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Nothing except (a) the Life Peerages Act 1958, which would need to be amended to allow people to be appointed to higher ranks, and (b) modern political realities, which would probably preclude the creation of different classes of life peer. This is on 2 grounds: (i) the trend is away from class divisions and towards egalitaranism (although I admit the continued existence of a partly hereditary chamber in a supposedly egalitarian state is anomalous); and (ii) there is simply no necessity, but more importantly, no point. All peers have only one vote each, regardless of their personal rank. The point of being appointed a peer these days is to give the government an advantage in the upper house, and that advantage comes from numbers alone, not from the rank of any particular individual. JackofOz 00:10, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Again, not strictly true. Crossbench (non-party political) life peers are created (e.g. retiring service chiefs, senior civil servants and diplomats, plus a few others) - it is still sometimes used as an honour instead of a political tool, although Tony Blair has certainly made it ever more political (as with everything else he does). In principle, a peerage is still an honour and not a way to pack the house. -- Necrothesp 00:27, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
It's not true to say that the Peerage has become more political. It's actually become substantially less political. No more life peerages are given out in the regular honours lists at New Year and the Queen's Birthday. In the first few years of the government, a large number of new peerages were created, of which Labour nominees made up the majority, but that was in order that Labour could "catch up" to where the Conservatives were in terms of total voting strength in the House of Lords. Since 2001, the 'Working Peers' Honours lists have become much rarer. Meanwhile the Peerages given out in honours lists have been replaced by Peerages given out by the House of Lords Appoinments commission (so-called "People's Peers"): Unlike the previous system, they are awarded only to non-partisan appointees. Sam Blacketer 00:37, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
I have amended my post above to say what I was trying to say. JackofOz 01:33, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Confusingly, historians (particularly those of W. European history) often use the term "barons" (lower case B) to mean the titled classes, many of whom were not Barons. --Dweller 16:41, 23 January 2007 (UTC)



Okay slow down and don't SHOUT! :) Actually I think that there is an article on each one of your "bio questions". Just search them in the searchbox. And it would be rather difficult for anyone of us to just answer such a difficult and long subject. Arjun 23:06, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville was one of the most important people of early French Louisiana, whose untimely death may have saved South Carolina its very existence. Definitely someone worth learning more about. Pfly 09:01, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

The Grange Movement[edit]

How did the Grange Movement in the early 1900s benifit farmers?

See Grange movement. Marco polo 23:14, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Three-striped flags[edit]

Why do so many national flags consist of three stripes? --Carnildo 23:35, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Because there are so many more easily-distinguished three-color combinations than two-color combinations. t h b 23:44, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

However, many flags consisting of 3 stripes have only 2 colours. JackofOz 23:53, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

...Maybe ... Lack of creativity? *covers* — Kieff 00:00, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

The use of two colors with three stripes makes even more combinations possible than using only three colors. t h b 02:05, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

True. It's also true that a 5-striped flag (and there are some) allows far more possibilities again. I think the answer is that a 3-striped flag is aesthetically pleasing, and for the general populace is the easiest to remember and reproduce. No intricate coats of arms or maps or stylised writing to bother about. Just simple colours, and rectangular shapes. JackofOz 02:15, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Indeed 30% of all national flags are designed this way, according to the article on triband. Apart from THB's disarmingly logical answer(s), it also would be interesting to hear what studies on visual perception have to say on the topic. There seems to be something aesthetically satisfying about things to behold being divided into three parts. The triptych was a popular form of visual art for centuries - its usage also reflected trinity, of course, which is just one example of the magical power of three in belief systems from taoism to ancient greek mythology, from Wiccans to Christians. Surpassing the more banal duality of things, it's the next step of complexity. It allows for grayer paths out of false dichotomies. Three points define an area, not just a stretch. Good and bad things come in threes. Three stripes on a flag can also come to be seen as symbolizing tripartite mottos such as Liberté, egalité, fraternité. ---Sluzzelin 02:27, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Oo! Oo! Don't forget Rule of three (writing) in your links to "three" articles. ou la mort... Skittle 17:40, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
"Three shall be the number thou shalt use, and the number of the usage shall be three. Four shalt thou not use, neither employ thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three." If it was good enough for the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch, it's good enough for flags. Clarityfiend 23:52, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

See Tricolour - a tricolour generally represents a republic. Jooler 13:13, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
How many "tricolor" were designed before and after the French flag was designed? It would be interesting to see because I heard a theory that practically all of them try to imitate the French flag.Evilbu 19:48, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
The vertical ones are following the French flag. The horizontal ones are mostly following the Russian flag (itself based on the Dutch flag).--Pharos 08:19, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

January 22[edit]


I wasn't sure if this is a philosophical question or a science one, so I assumed it's more about philosophy of science. The way I see it, nature is a series of cycles, but that would mean that 'time' was created by us for our own reasoning. So is time natural, or was it created by humans? SolidNatrix 00:05, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

The concept of time is part of the universe - it's the fourth dimension in spacetime. The 'direction' of time comes from entropy - time is merely the direction in which the entropy of the universe increases. Read more at Arrow of time and Entropy (arrow of time).
This, of course, if from my perspective, that of a physicist. If you read the opening paragrpah of Time, you will see that others subscribe to a view similar to yours - that time is simly a mental device for assigning sequence and duration to events. There's plenty to read on this at Time and Philosophy of space and time. →Ollie (talkcontribs) 01:06, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
An idealist might argue that time is a concept that does not exist independently of our minds. However, the idealist also denies that there is any objective reality independent of our minds. It is difficult or impossible to prove or disprove idealism because it proceeds from premises that are difficult or impossible to falsify. However, to the extent that we accept the existence of any objective reality, it seems to me difficult to see time as anything but a dimension of the physical world that exists independently of human thought. For example, there is considerable empirical evidence for the speed at which light travels, and for the distance between our planet and a given known star, which can be measured in light-years, or the time that it takes light to travel from that star. Radiometric dating can provide strong evidence that a given rock has existed for a definite length of time. There are numerous other examples from science. Marco polo 01:16, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

There are philosophical/mathematical aspects to our experience of time. Just as the universe is continuous in length measures, vis, there are an infinite number of points on the straight line interval between any two distinct points. There is an infinite number of time events between any two time events. This is corollary to the solution to Zeno's Paradox.

The concept of time has cultural elements. The number of hours in a day, and when those hours started for the day was not decided in Europe before the renaiscance saw the town clocks usurped by smaller time pieces. Some towns had the day begin at dawn, some at 12pm. However, time has been measured throughout recorded history. Robert Graves had an interesting theory regarding the thirteenth moon and the ancient Greek custom of 'King for a Year.' In the past, time was important for knowledge of seasons. Nowadays, time is rather important for work .. not so different DDB 07:02, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

In physics, time as a dimension certainly has an objective existence. An event has a co-ordinate in time, just as it has space co-ordinates (or, more precisely, an event has spacetime co-ordinates in a Minkowski space, one of which can be distinguished as a time co-ordinate). As Einstein (or possibly Woody Allen) may have said: Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening at once. However, the notion that we are moving "through" time from "past" to "future" is an illusion, caused by the fact that we can only remember or record events in one direction along the time axis, which we call the "past". This asymmetry or anisotropy in the time dimension is due a combination of the very special non-equilibrium conditions that existed at the Big Bang, and the second law of thermodynamics. Gandalf61 14:55, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Gay Men in Ancient Sparta?[edit]

The encyclopedia information on ancient Spart refers only to females being bi-sexual, nothing re. males. My husband says that he learned in high school that the males in ancient Sparta were generally homosexual and that heterosexual sex was mostly just to procreate for the preservation of the society. To whaat degree is this true? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Tyeasley (talkcontribs) 01:08, 22 January 2007 (UTC).

Have a look at Sparta, particularly the section on "Education". It is certainly not correct to refer to people in any ancient society as "gay", since this cultural category did not exist until very recent times. While Spartan men did typically engage in what we might call homosexual behavior, it was behavior of a certain sort: relations, very carefully defined, between mature men and adolescent boys. Sexual relations between two mature men met cultural disapproval. At the same time, adult men were expected to marry and to procreate. However, I don't think that there is evidence that they were discouraged from taking pleasure in heterosexual relations. Marco polo 01:29, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
You should also look at Homosexuality in the militaries of ancient Greece, where Philip II of Macedon-recorded by Plutarch- is quoted as saying that such forms of love are only found among the most warlike races, including the Spartans. It would hardly be surprising in the Spartan case, considering males had to live together for prolonged periods without female company. But, as always, it is best to treat such generalisations with a degree of caution. Xenophon, one of the best sources on ancient Sparta, specifically denies the existence of widspread homosexuality; and Aristotle noted that the power of women in Sparta was typical of militaristic societies without a strong emphasis on male homosexuality. In addition to this, the first recorded heterosexual love poem was written by a Spartan, expressing his admiration for Spartan girls. And what girls they were! Clio the Muse 01:36, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Well were there homosexual love poems before? (recorded) X [Mac Davis] (DESK|How's my driving?) 10:46, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Was Sappho perhaps later? I also heard of some old Middle Eastern stuff. 惑乱 分からん 14:07, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
I personally do not know of any Spartan poetry with a homoerotic theme, though this is not to say that such verses do not exist. But what I do know, if this is any help, is that there was no pottery with such themes, though there is plenty for Athens, Corinth and other Greek cities. Clio the Muse 21:05, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
In my third year of secondary high school, my history teacher was unusually explicit about that : "Of course there werelots of homosexuals among those Greeks! Why do you think they ran around in (almost) nothing!"Evilbu 19:47, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Question on Ponce De Leon[edit]

The Wikipedia section under Ponce De Leon notes that "The popular story that Ponce de León was searching for the Fountain of Youth when he discovered Florida is misconceived. He was seeking a spiritual rebirth with new glory, honor, and personal enrichment, not a biological rebirth through the waters of the Fountain of Youth. The Tainos had told the Spanish of a large, rich island to the north named Bimini, and Ponce de Leon was searching for gold, slaves and lands to claim and govern for Spain, all of which he hoped to find at Bimini and other islands."

Is there supporting evidence for asserting that the popular connection of Ponce and the Fountain of Youth is misconceived?

My son has been asked to write a report for his 5th grade teacher on Ponce De Leon. I sent him to Wikipedia but his teacher has told him that Wikipedia may not be used as a source since it could contain inaccurate information. I encourage him to get an overview from Wikipedia and then other find supporting sources, thinking that on this subject there would be many. I've joined his search and we've found many internet sites either quoting Wikipedia or propagating the Ponce de Leon as a Fountain of Youth seeker (including several encyclopedias) but only one stating Ponce De Leon was not a fountain seeker. Given the preponderance of citations available for Ponce as Fountain seeker, are there some strong sources rebuking this commonly held perception? This is all we found:

Thank you, Welin grossman 01:49, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Welin, if you look at these issues in strict historiographical terms it is important to try to trace a source of any given statement about a particular individual as close to their lives as possible. Is there any contemporary evidence to suggest that Ponce de Leon was in search of a Fountain of Youth? It would seem not. He died in 1521, and the first accounts of his alleged search appear, according to the Wikipedia article, some forty years later in the Memoir of Antonio de Herrera y Tordesillas. This in itself, with no further evidence, would be enough to raise suspicions in the mind of any serious historian. If you consider, moreover, that Ponce de Leon financed his own expedition it would seem likely that he was looking for much more earthly returns than some nebulous source of eternal youth and earthly ruin. In your son's position I would be inclined to give an account of De Leon's alleged search, and then follow this up by saying, in true scholarly fashion, that there is no reliable source written during the explorer's lifetime to give this tale credence. That alone should be worth some merit! Clio the Muse 10:06, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
A misconceived rebirth? It is also a particularly rotten mixed metaphor. meltBanana 20:32, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Yea, I hate mixed metaphors; who let that smoking skeleton out of the closet ? Oh well, I guess I'll burn that bridge when I get to it. StuRat 20:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

British Honours System ... redux[edit]

In the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, I've failed to find any sort of concrete criteria that seperates an individual from being honored with any one of the ranks. While the ranks lose some exclusivity on the way down, is there a published or acknowledged set of criteria? For what it's worth, it's currently 845 AM GMT (245 AM Central) and I'm facing a 2 PM (8 AM) deadline. Thanks for any help. Wolfgangus 08:48, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Check out the fourth question down in this FAQ. Have a look around the rest of this site as well, there may be other information of use to you. Cheers. --Richardrj talk email 08:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

That's an outstanding source; concise and ideal for my purpose. Thanks very, very much. Wolfgangus 10:20, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Mysterious unknown 1930s photographer(s): "The 3"[edit]

I am looking for information on who "The 3" was or were. Here is what I know: "The 3" were photographer(s), who's work was highly published in Condé Nast's Vogue and House & Garden from 1932-33. They shot mostly still life (i.e. furniture, plants, etc.). Can you tell me anything else about them? Were they men or women? Who were they? Where did they come from? Why did they call themselves "The 3?" Any biographical and career information or source suggestions would be extremely appreciated!

An example of their work: [[3]]

-- 16:59, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

We haven't forgotten you, I did my best and searched quite a bit, but got nothing other than that one picture you already linked to (of course, words such as '"the" and "3" aren't particularly fun to search). there were obviously so many Art Deco photographers working for Vogue at the time, and it's hard to tell from one still who the three might be (provided there were actually three people sharing that name, and provided they were famous photographers, then or later, known by another name). You mentioned stills of furniture too, do you have any more examples of their work?---Sluzzelin 00:21, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for continuing the search. We have 80 archive images of The 3's work from Vogue and House & Garden, but they're not public domain. "The 3" is actually how they are credited in the magazines themselves. Yet we can't find historical data on The 3 besides the pictures.

The New York Public Library and the Library of Congress Photo Departments both came up empty handed as well. If you find anything, let me know! Thank you so much, again.-- 18:33, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Going into journalism.[edit]

I thought this might be a good place to ask about this. What is the best route to go into journalism? What sort of degree would be beneficial? (I'm from Scotland if that affects anything - I'm not planning on leaving the country to go to university) I'm considering doing a joint degree of English and French, but is there anything better I should know about? If you're a journalist any ideas would be much appreciated! --Bearbear 17:20, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Having worked for several Dutch newspapers, my impression is that most journalists here focused in their studies on things that are not really closely related to journalism (e.g. History, Literature), so English and French seem decent choices. But you could also think about going to a school for journalism, for example Napier University in Edinburgh. Anyway, the best preparation would certainly be to start doing what you want to do right away, by writing a lot, for example for a student paper. Skarioffszky 18:55, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
There are also degrees in journalism: [4]. Tell it like it is. Squiddy | (squirt ink?) 23:37, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
I don't think a degree is necessarily a prerequisite for a career in journalism. As Skarioffsky says above, it might be advantageous in that you can get experience in writing for a student paper. On the other hand, you might find yourself to be three years behind the other guy. I'm not trying to dissuade you from going to university, far from it - best years of my life blah blah. But you can enjoy your favourite subject for its own sake without worrying too much about whether it will equip you for a career in journalism. The other advice is that you should try and get some work experience with a local paper or radio station. It'll probably be unpaid, but you'll be getting experience and a foot in the door. Good luck. --Richardrj talk email 08:41, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Coptic bookbinding??[edit]

Did ancient Copts invent this ancient (4th century?) technology for bookbinding? Were these people living in Ethiopia? Or Egypt? Or who were the inventors of this bookbinding exactly? African Christians? What's the best way to describe the inventors of this bookbinding method?--Sonjaaa 18:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

This method was invented by the Copts. Marco polo 20:55, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

There is some information about the switch from the scroll to the codex in the article codex. Wareh 20:57, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Iran Invasion[edit]

Do you think Bush will invade Iran, And if so do you also think he will use the pretext that Iran is supplying weapons to elements Of the Shia insurgency(Sadr's militia whom we indirectly support by supporting maliki)? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Smedley2 (talkcontribs) 19:04, 22 January 2007 (UTC).

No way no how. You simply don't mess with Iran. Vranak
It is possible that Bush will bomb Iran - because of their alleged nuclear weapons program - but I think it is extremely unlikely that there will be an invasion. There are not even enough US troops in the Middle East to secure Baghdad, so occupying another country would be very unwise. As-Sadr, by the way, is not the Iraqi Shia leader with the strongest ties to Tehran; that would be Abdul Aziz al-Hakim. Skarioffszky 19:19, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
I get the feeling that Iran is far enough along in their nuclear weapons program that the US government couldn't risk bombing them. Consider how wrong US intelligence was on Iraq's nonexistant weapons cache. Iran's leader warned the US about this some years ago, and it didn't come off bluster, it sounded deadly serious.Vranak
I disagree, they only restarted their efforts recently, they couldn't have a nuclear bomb yet. StuRat 20:48, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Nobody thinks they have a bomb yet. They are all worried that they will pass a "point of no return" where there will be no diplomatic or military way to prevent them from making a weapon. Even the most optimistic estimates put Iran's possession of a nuclear weapon many years away from the present, most say around a decade. -- 14:29, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
I have no references to support this, but I heard a radio report the other night in which the correspondent was reading from an oil industry projection which contended that oil analysts expect an Israeli attack on Iran by the end of February. User:Zoe|(talk) 21:32, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Which is possibly more likely than any type of U.S. action against Iran because there is the precedent of the Israeli bombing of the Osirak nuclear reactor in Iraq in 1981. There is also some indication that current U.S. efforts against Iran are producing results. -Fsotrain09 22:21, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Bush would have to be a total idiot, completely out of touch with reality, to do it. The army is stretched to the limit already. Oh, wait... Clarityfiend 23:45, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

This is straying from the confines of the Reference Desk a bit, but... does anyone else get the feeling that the world isn't taking the Iranian threat seriously enough? I mean, even if you don't care about Israel or the Middle East, imagine the chaos if Iran sent a nuclear warhead at Tel-Aviv or somewhere. Israel would respond in kind and all hell would break loose. Even if Iran refrains from using any nuclear weapons it develops, its weapons would encourage countries like Egypt, Syria and Saudi Arabia to develop their own nuclear weapons. I don't blame people for not trusting Bush considering his track record; perhaps the worst thing about his presidency is how he's damaged the country's credibility just when it needs international consensus on Iran and North Korea. I wonder about the people who are demanding a stop to the war on Iran before it even begins -- do they not believe Iran is developing nuclear weapons, or do they just not care? -- Mwalcoff 00:03, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Very well said, Mwalcoff. Whatever one's personal opinion on the guy, GWB has squandered every ounce of credibility. Personally I feel it's undeserved, and Bush is being scapegoated for a mission gone wrong. After all, both Houses of Congress approved the war in Iraq. Now they're backtracking and blaming it all on George. Anyway, I'd best get away from that issue as despite how firm my position is, it's obviously unwinnable at this point.
Much more importantly, this is how it's gonna go down in Iran: After days and weeks and months of useless diplomacy, Israel will finally realize that such diplomacy is going nowhere, and the IAF will simply take the matter into its own hands. Some time soon we'll wake up one morning and read a headline in our local Newspaper: "Israeli Air Force Executes Surgical Raid Eliminating Iranian Nuclear Capabilities: UN Outraged". Oh well. Bring on the outrage. Loomis 01:18, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
The "UN" isn't a world goverment, it is a speaking platform of every country. Of course many countries will publicly protest and pretend to be outraged. Privatly they (and more Muslims that we would ever know) will cheer and breath with relief; alas that's politics. Flamarande 03:01, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Putting aside the anti Bush rhetoric, I think the Iran issue needs to be examined. It isn't the Iranian peoples that are a headache for world peace, but Iranian administration. Politics is everything, and no Iranian administration is going to back down on a face off with what they have for decades described as 'the evil West.' If Iranian leaders do that, they will be committing political suicide. They have qualified support of oil addicts, like Russia and China.

However, it is clear, also, that Iran is behind much of what is troubling Iraq (and Israel). The problems in Iraq do not suit the US administration, although the US opposition seem to be making hay. Israel is facing more than Iranian rhetoric. What is new to the equation is the new Secretary General of the UN. DDB 02:06, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Who is allready in the pocket of the USA. Beside that he is hasn't any real power to speak off. Flamarande 03:01, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Mwalcoff, I am only speaking for myself and I going to really honest here. Yes, I believe that Iran is building Nuclear weapons and yes, that notion scares me a lot as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad seems to be as intelligent as George W. Bush (ohh major insult here). But Iran is simply too big to be invaded quickly and the current number of available US troops is simply too low to invade Iran as Iraq seems to show. Nato is divided and many European nations are not keen at all to join the USA in another foolhardy invasion. You can thank the American dream admistration and its elected (and retarded) politicians, with all their screaming of "Freedom fries", "Old Europe", "New Europe", etc: they managed to pis* of two of their strongest allies (France and Germany). And for what? For all the "mighty forces of New Europe" who are leaving them (or already left) them in Iraq? And this is even forgeting the certainty that anyone with a grudge towards the West (how many in that particular region? Eeks) would certainly join the Iranians (and I am not speaking of national armies, I am speaking of simple individuals joining in droves). Read also a little about the Iran-Iraq War to see how Iranians fight. They fight like Lions (or desperate madmen). So a pointless invasion (which could easily escalate) is out, agreed?

That leaves only an air-raid; by Israel or the USA. Let's begin with the obvious: both just might pull it off if the Iranians are focusing their efforts upon a single or upon a very small number of facilities. Their planes would have to re-supplied along the way, but either the Israelis or the Americans would do it (if Israel did it the US would strongly deny being involved but you can bet anything you want that they would help in every concivable way they could). But for what? I mean (unless they are completly stupid and I don't think they are) the Iranians are more than capable enough to have more than one facility involved in the Nuclear endavour. I mean everybody with half a brain learned that it is a very stupid thing to have all the eggs in one basket after Operation Opera. A big single vital facility = major target, ergo: many smaller facilities (better to hide, protect, and most importantly: to keep their locations secret). If you are really cautious you have more than one facility making the same product. Even if you destroy some Iranian facilities (and that's assuming the vital ones aren't located in really secure locations like subterrean facilities or whatever), other facilities will simply continue the work. I also think that all the vital info was copied and guarded by the Iranian goverment in more than one secure location (at least that is what I would do). Iran would be delayed for a couple of years (if that at all) but would probably just continue. You would gain absoutly nothing but anger the Iranians further (I can see their propaganda using the collateral victims of raid allready). Therefore I (and I think many countries) am simply against any air-raid.

The only cautious alternatives the US has these days is to wait and see, (re)gain new (old) allies, preferably with a competent, fresh, and untarnished administration (because the current one has no credibility whatsover these days), and to impose the best possible sanctions upon Iran. If at all possible, sabotage the nuclear facilities blaming everything upon the Iranian goverment/scientists/tecnicans incompetence. As soon as Iran proudly proclaims that it has a Nuclear weapon, make a public statement: Any nuclear attack upon Israel by Iran will be considered a attack upon the USA and will sufer the full retaliation of the Nuclear arsenal of the USA FULLSTOP. Simply turn Iran into another North Korea. They have guns, an enormous army, and they are afraid/hate the USA. Their economy is in shambles and they are starving. YES, I know that Iran has lots of oil and that ensures that someone will buy it. But don't forget that Iraq also had oil, and was in shambles after 10 years of sanctions. These facts also disencourage many countries to develop Nuclear Weapons. Learn something from History for a change: MAD worked, works, and will work in the foreseable future. Make two new Cold Wars with Iran and North Korea and hope for the best. The chances are high that they also don't want die in a full-scale Nuclear War and that eventually a moderate leader reaches power (like Gorbachev) or that the ppl revolt, like the GDR. Either way (and yes, even with an eventual civil war) beats the probable results of a major war with Iran or North Korea. If Iran or North Korea use the N-bombs they will be obliterated from the face of the earth by the imediate retaliation. Flamarande 03:01, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Bush will not invade Iran but Israel will bomb the !#!$^W*(&^ out of parts of it. t h b 03:56, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is a good-looking guy. Good-looking guys are not crazy. Only a crazy person would allow their well-developed country, with a great deal to lose, to enter into a war with the Western powers. Ergo, Iran will not be involved in any wars. Vranak

'Loomis' has you on the right track. May I also suggest you entertain the idea that if it all goes to hell in Iraq, that the Shia in that unfortunate country, with the backing of Iran, will prevail over the Sunni. Which brings us back to Loomis's Israeli factor. °Bumblefart 07:41, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

I don't see anyone mentioning the standard path: Complain to the UN that Iran is doing something wrong. Get sanctions against Iran. Iran threatens to starve innocent women and children if the sanctions aren't lifted. An oil-for-food program is created. A bunch of people take huge kick-backs in the program and get even richer than they already are. Iran continues doing whatever they want to do. The US continues to complain to the UN that nothing is getting done. Then, when it is politically viable, the US attacks. That will take us at least until the 2012 elections. --Kainaw (talk) 07:56, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
Iran threatens to starve innocent women and children – you know, Iran is made up of people, just like the United States. Regarding your perceived adversaries as monsters is not really very fair or helpful. Vranak
He's talking about what Saddam did under the oil-for-food program. He made sure that children and the poor didn't get medicine and food, so they would suffer and die, even though he had plenty of resources to care for them. This allowed him to claim the deaths and suffering were all a result of UN sanctions and US oppression. This is one of the real reasons for the second Iraq war (as opposed to the fake reasons used by the Bush administration). StuRat 20:20, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
I think it is unlikely that Iran will be deterred any time soon from developing a nuclear arsenal. They just saw Iraq plunged into the seventh ring of hell by the US army. A nuclear arsenal is the only weapon capable of stopping a Western invasion, the Cold War is proof. The choice is logical to build an arsenal. I think any power hungry politician would do the same to keep his position from being obliterated. As Flamarande said the US/Israel could stop them for one or ten years but not forever. I also think that even if Iran acquires nuclear capabilities it can't use them because of MAD, for every one they acquire the US already has 50 which can be put to use if need be. SvenGodo 22:45, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
If the program is only pushed back a few years, that's better than nothing. In a few years Iran may have a government that decides to cooperate with the UN and/or the US may have enough troops free to do a more thorough job in Iran. Perhaps an invasion of Iran could then take place, but without the occupation afterwards. The US could go in, destroy all the nuclear facilities, take all the nuclear scientists and enemy politicians as POWs, then withdraw, leaving Iran to decide it's own fate. StuRat 11:15, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
But I am in favour (believe it or not) of an air-raid but only if all vital facilities are completly destroyed forcing the Iranian goverment to restart from scratch. But to attack redundant facilities to simply delay for a few years is simply foolish. In a few years Iran may have a government that decides to cooperate with the UN and/or the US may have enough troops free to do a more thorough job in Iran. OR an outraged Iranian ppl (manipulated by the press always showing the collateral victims) may vote and support a (more?) radical goverment. OR the USA may be led by a (more?) incompetent President who is unable to withrdraw enough troops to do any invasion if Iran (big country). OR the US may take a hell of a beating and suffer a defeat. OR... Flamarande 15:53, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, the US forces are likely to be increased by 92,000 (this is one of the few proposals in Bush's State of the Union address which is likely to actually pass), and the troops in Iraq are going to be reduced by the end of this year, after a brief "surge", no matter what Bush wants, as any Congressman voting otherwise would be unlikely to be re-elected in 2008. Don't make the mistake of thinking Iran is a democracy, the real power is with the religious authorities. What the public thinks doesn't matter there. I have a hard time imagining a President any more incompetent than the current Bush. So, chances are that the US will be in a better position to deal with Iran in a few years. StuRat 22:57, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Or, better yet, we might not be using oil by then. Iran will have almost no income. They won't be able to afford to be a real threat to anyone. When will people learn that we need to start driving bigger and bigger cars to burn through all the oil as fast as we possibly can! --Kainaw (talk) 11:44, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
As much of a threat the Soviets were, they weren't insane. They feared death just like the rest of us. Mutual Assured Destruction, or MAD, guarantees death and devastation on both sides. The Soviets had no interest in suicide. On the other hand, there's no shortage of Shahids. Martyrdom among Islamists is unfortunately far from a rarity. We see it pretty much on a daily basis. "Nuke the Zionists and who cares if they Nuke us back? We'll all go to heaven and they'll go to hell". Now that's scary. Crazy as it may seem, for Islamists, even MAD is useless as a deterrent.
Are you telling me that a whole ppl, like the Iranian ppl, isn't afraid to die in a Nuclear holocaust? Even Islamist leaders don't seem to very keen to die, being rather content to send young fanatics to die in their place. If you threaten an entire nation with a Nuclear retaliation the goverment of that country will pause and look around. Flamarande 15:53, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
One would hope so, Flamarande. Of course you're assuming that the Iran is some sort of democracy and the Iranian people have some sort of rein on their insane leadership. Indeed, Iran's youth, a rather liberal and educated bunch, are strongly opposed to its theocratic leadership. Another option I failed to mention is a popular revolution in Iran toppling their insane leadership and replacing it with a moderate, pacifist regime truly representative of the majority of the Iranian people. Unfortuntately, time is of the essence, and if such a revolution does not emerge some time in the IMMEDIATE future, the only other option will be a military strike. But you're right on one aspect. Even if nuclear war were to break out, Iran's cowadly Islamist leaders would likely find some means of escaping any nuclear holocaust they would bring upon their people, such as, perhaps, an extremely deep and far more sophisticatedly protected version of the "spider hole" Saddam was ultimately found hiding in. In fact, the parallel is quite eerie when you think about it. Despite the death of his two sons, a fact that would emotionally destroy any caring father, Saddam was still looking out for himself and himself alone. I wouldn't expect anything different from Iran's selfish and cowardly leadership. Loomis 08:03, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
"...a popular revolution in Iran toppling their insane leadership and replacing it with a moderate, pacifist regime truly representative of the majority of the Iranian people." Something like this has already happened in history (read: Mohammed Mossadegh) but the CIA took him out of power in order to maintain corporate control of Iran's oil and reinstated the "insane leadership" of the Shah. So maybe what Iran needs in order to be met with peace by the U.S. has less to do with democracy and freedom and more to do with economic submission. Amirman 03:38, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
What must be done is that Iran must be disarmed immediately, and believe me, put the Mossad and the IAF together and it's doable, very doable. As for the UN, I never said the UN was a world government of any sort (thank God!).
So sure you are. Well perhaps they are waiting for the last possible moment to bomb (or to sabotage) the facilities, like they did in Osirak (and trying to ensure the USA helps them - which would preferably be after a American withdrawl in Iraq). That would be cunning and tricky (I like this "devious" plot a lot :), but I fear only the very top commanders of the IAF, some members of the Israeli Gov, and even fewer (perhaps none) members of USA gov know the truth in this matter. Flamarande 15:53, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Just as in 1981, when Israel destroyed Iraq's nuclear capabilities at Osirak, and just as the United Nations Security Council unanimously expressed its outrage over it in its Resolution 487: "strongly condem[ing] the attack by Israel in clear violation of the Charter of the United Nations and the norm of international conduct", by such champions of international law as the USSR, China, East Germany, Niger, Panama, The Phillipines, Uganda, Tunisia, as well as Spain, France, the UK and yes, even the United States, to be honest, I couldn't give a rat's ass if today's Security Council, consisting of such beacons of goodness, human rights and democracy as China, Russia, The Republic of Congo, Ghana, Indonesia and Qatar, amongst others, and even, as in 1981, without a US veto were to expess similar outrage. What in God's name do I care about the "outrage" of, for example, the President-for-life Denis Sassou-Nguesso of The Republic of Congo, or the most recent Chairman of the People's Dictatorship of China? And that's the UNSC! I won't even mention the farce that is the General Assembly! All I meant to say is that Israel/the US has my full support, despite the hypocricy of the UN and the world community's inevitable "outrage" over whatever ridiculous "violation of international law" required to accomplish that most vital of missions. Loomis 04:52, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Its "outrage" was for the press and certain muslim countries, and the commemorating party was simply behind closed doors. BUT you really should be concerned with the Chairman of the People's Republic of China (all regimes who aren't Monarchies are Republics) because that guy is the leader of one of the most powerful nations on Earth. China could be a hell of an ally, or a most dreaded foe (China seems content to buy lots of oil though, just as anybody else). The UNSC is the gathering of the powerful and not of the (many times, self-) rightous. The General Assembly is the gathering of all nations of the planet (with a few exceptions), so that all nations can speak and defend their POV. Most of the nations of this planet aren't liberal democracies. Thats politics and diplomacy: you talk and trie to manipulate the powerful so that they help you when you need it. You seem to be seeing this in a white-black, good-evil perspective; please open your eyes: the vast majority of human endavours is grey. Every nation breaks international law when it suits its national interrest. Israel has WOMD's, are you perhaps in favour of invading it, or bombing the Negev Nuclear Research Center? I think not (and I'm not also). There is no "international cop" who will arrest the law-breaking leaders of a country (NO, USA is not an international cop, just a big bully who likes to use that excuse when it suits it and ignores the same rules when it wants). Flamarande 15:53, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Flamarande, much of your argument is based on a rather disappointing misconception: "all regimes who aren't Monarchies are Republics". WRONG. A Republic is a form of government maintained by a state or country whose sovereignty is based on popular consent and whose governance is based on popular representation and control. Several definitions stress the importance of the rule of law as part of the requirements for a republic. Don't be fooled by titles. Just as "The Democratic People's Republic of Korea" (North Korea) is neither a democracy nor a republic, neither is the The People's Republic of China any sort of true republic. Nor is it a monarchy for that matter. It's a dictatorship, pure and simple.

You accused me of looking at certain things in a "white-black", "good-evil" perspective. I plead guilty as charged. Dictatorships are evil. As such, they have no legitimate say in the affairs of those countries who at the very least strive, in the utmost of good faith, albeit not always successfuly, to be true democracies. Loomis 08:41, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

To be true that honest mistake isn't the basis of my arguments at all. You are focussing upon the (relativly minor) mistake avoiding all the arguments. If you truly are "guilty as charged" you are unable to understand the many nuances of ancient and modern politics. "Right-Wrong", "Good-Evil", Human politics and history are much more nuanced and fascinating than that. Everything has a good side and everything has a bad side, its all a matter of perspective and most importantly POV. "You will find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view" (where truer words ever spoken? :). Flamarande 23:26, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Don't all cops ignore the rules whenever it suits them ? StuRat 23:17, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
I truly hope not, and even if that were true it wouldn't make it right; and a bully isn't a cop. Flamarande 23:26, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
It's too bad that there are 7½ declared nuclear powers (US, Russia, UK, France, China, India, Pakistan and Israel -- I'm not counting North Korea). However, we can take heart that none of those countries is likely to use the weapons in a first strike and none of them wants to wipe out other countries. Even Mainland China doesn't want to kill people on Taiwan. The threat from Iran (and North Korea) is that of a regime willing to launch a potentially self-destructive total war. The world can't risk states like those getting nuclear weapons. -- Mwalcoff 00:30, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

In regards to what Loomis had prviously stated if I saw the world in black/ white good/ evil terms I wouldn't be proud of it with that kind of attitude you might as well throwin with the jihadis and fundamentalists Christian and Muslim. Regimes may be wrong headed ,evil,greedy etc.but should their populations have to bear the cost of a regimes incompetence.There are plenty in the middle east who see the west as the embodiment of evil and as long as thats going on we had better start de-escalating these conflicts rather than inflaming them Smedley2

Had you read my post carefully enough, you'd have noticed that my position is that certain things can be categorized as good or evil, not everything. If your favourite colour is mauve, there's nothing good or evil about it; it's simply a matter of taste. Similarly, if you're a Democrat, or a Republican, a Tory or a Labour supporter, there's nothing "good or evil" about any of these positions. However with regard to certain issues, at least from my perspective, the "good vs. evil" dichotomy does apply. There's no middle ground. Dictatorships are evil. Period. Terrorism is evil. Period. Hitler was an evil man. Period. The president of Iran is an evil man. Period. Notice I've said little aout the actual people of the middle east. In fact I have a great deal of admiration for the people of Iran. If only they would rid themselves of their evil leadership, my hope is that they ca re-establish themselves as the great nation they deserve to be regarded as. Loomis 22:36, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
The current leadership in both USA and Iran has lost a lot of power and credibility recently. For George Bush to pursue a new military venture would severly hamper Republican hopes for the US Presidency. Also, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has recently lost a lot of supports in local elections, and there is a growing tide of opposition to his hard-line policies. Likewise, Ehud Olmert has only been in a power for a year (counting the time he deputised for Ariel Sharon), and he was widely criticised in Israel for his handling of the conflict with Lebanon last year. None of these three men is in a good position to bomb anything, let alone invade. The only factors that could change this is if the perceived threat against Israel dramatically rises, or Iran is insulted by other world powers (national pride could be a large factor behind garnering more support for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad). Lebanon remains at a difficult point of change, and overmuch interference from outside the country could create problems. However, while Hezbollah is focused on the domestic power struggle, others may well leave them alone. — Gareth Hughes 15:07, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

torture Of St Vincent[edit]

what is the "gridiron"? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 20:16, 22 January 2007 (UTC).

See Gridiron. Large versions were used in the martyrdom of saints, St. Laurence amongst others. Clio the Muse 20:43, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Cook a side of beef one day, a Saint the next day. Gridiron also refers to the markings on the field where American football is played. Edison 16:44, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
And, therefore, has come to be a sobriquet for the sport itself. --Dweller 16:58, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Bradley Pharmaceuticals[edit]

Why is the religion of the owner included? 20:58, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for bringing that to our attention. That irrelevancy has been removed. For the record, I have also PRODded the article, since there are no sources, no claims of notability, and it hasn't had any edits in weeks. User:Zoe|(talk) 21:36, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Tax deductible charities[edit]

I need to know if the National Arbor Day Foundation is a tax deductible charity? 21:48, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

I suppose it might have been faster to call their donation line and ask! I downloaded [5] their 04-05 annual report and went to the financial statements where the auditors have said that the foundation is incorporated under the Nebraska Nonprofit Corporation act, is exempt from Federal Income Tax under s501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and qualifies for the charitable contribution deduction under s170(b)(1)(A). This would have gone a lot faster if they hadn't been paranoid and disabled copying and pasting from the PDF of their report!!--inksT 22:44, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Quick question for the philosophers here[edit]

Why do we? -- 22:33, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Quick answer - Why not?--inksT 22:34, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
So that one day a boy may be born who can communicate with the seagulls on their level? --Kurt Shaped Box 22:54, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Do we? (Obvious response: Why, we do! ;)) 惑乱 分からん 23:25, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

It doesn't take a doctorate in philosophy to tell you that isn't a complete question. Why do we do what? Live? If we didn't live, there'd be no one to ask why we live. Vranak

and, of course, some of us don't. Squiddy | (squirt ink?) 23:32, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Or, because we do with the flow, viewing the indubitable doability of it all... We do and we doo-doo, we dada and we do doodad til the day we've did it done... 惑乱 分からん 23:46, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
Because the bladder tells you to. Keria 01:40, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

I can hear the anguish and regret behind the question. I thought about this, discussed it with my family, and my boss. Then, I watched tv for cultural references. I think that most of it is accidental, and that people don't intend to, but they just do. Then there are unpopular people who seem to all the time, and nobody really worries, so long as it is legal. I don't think it appropriate with the young, pets or rubber bands South of the Mason Dixon line.I was very impressed when the space walker did it and I hope that helps with the research.

More seriously, I feel the question akin to initiative. The joke about why does 'man' initiate when other creatures, some with surface similarities, do not build cities and tell stories. Within the brain of every living person is a type of neuron that reflects observation. So if you see someone smile, you feel an urge to do the same. That alone does not define or distinguish humanity, and other creatures possess similar attributes, but it is one of the distinguishing marks that allows humanity to 'do'. DDB 01:48, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Teachers don't. Only those who can, do. --Dweller 16:38, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

This sounds like a troll to me... | AndonicO Talk · Sign Here 21:48, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

How about feeding trolls food for thought? =S 惑乱 分からん 23:22, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
Why do we what? --Proficient 07:58, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

we do because we feel we have to. we do because there are consequences if we dont. we do because we feel it is right and not to do would be wrong. we do because we can.--Kittycat rox 19:14, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

January 23[edit]

Assassination of the Pope[edit]

I was reading somewhere about Christian radicals when this question popped up in my head. What would happen if a country, that was predominantly non-Christian, successfully commissioned an assassination of the Pope (a Patriarch would do also) for religious reasons (rather then political). Other then condemning the attack, would the world and the Christian community (of the deceased leader) respond in any other way to the offending nation? --The Dark Side 03:11, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

First of all, how can an entire country be held responsible for murdering someone? A murder is the work of one person or a relatively small group of people. How would the world know such a group was behind the killing? Would the killers be proclaiming their complicity in the streets? If evidence was uncovered that certain individuals were responsible, diplomatic action might be taken to have them extradited for indictment and trial. If their country's government refused to allow such an extradition, and their fellow citizens were generally seen to be supportive of the government's position, then the Christian world might be justified in condemning the entire country. JackofOz 03:24, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
The question doesn't seem to make much sense in terms of world realities, but the questioner may be trying to vaguely retrieve a hazy memory of Papal interdict... AnonMoos 17:13, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

I don't think anyone stands to benefit from the Pope's death. Vranak 05:45, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

There is an assumption here that nations act to a purpose. Not even democracies work on collective will. If collective will ran nations, Miss Universe would be President of China and the middle east would be a smoking ruin. I accept Hu Jin Tao is attractive, but not President.

There is a mistake, often made, to believe that the expressions of leaders is descriptive of constituents. In the case of Al Quaeda, there is an appearance of uniformity of purpose. However, such groupings are quite small, and yet purpose is verifiably not uniform. So that Osama Bin Ladin claims to want to destroy the western world, but David Hicks just wants to live a simple life. In large groupings, like the US, there is formalised dichotomy of political expression, and options for not following either. So no nation would ever will to 'kill the Pope.' Similarly, the Christian world does not rest on the fate of the Pope.

Insane groupings, like Al Quaeda, have a sexy media image. However, they aren't uniform of purpose. Are not closely aligned with anyone and do not possess constructive ability required for a cohesive society. DDB 11:35, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Osama wants to destroy the Western world? Come on. He held up Sweden as an example of a country he didn't mind, in late 2004. I don't think he's that extreme. And Al Qaeda may not make much sense to us Westerners, but if it were outright insane it wouldn't have so many members. Vranak

You're asking us to speculate on something, which isn't really what the Ref Desk is for. However, I suppose you could assume the response would be unlikely to go as far as a declaration of war. i would guess that if a country was clearly the sponsor of the attack on the Pope, there would be an international outcry from all responsible governments, and most of the irresponsible ones too. I'd expect embargoes and boycotts, leaving the responsible government a pariah. Depending on how strong the regime is, the actions would achieve little or much.

Moving on to more comfortable ground for this board and citing historical precedents, it also depends on how clever a political game the regime can play. The Libyans did very well to reduce the heat from the Yvonne Fletcher and Pan_Am_Flight_103 outrages. But it took them a while.

Now, contrast that with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, an act that could hardly be described as sponsored by a state and it reveals that the true answer might be that such incidents could be regarded merely as catalysts or excuses. --Dweller 16:36, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Dweller, might I suggest that you look a little more deeply into the events leading up to the murder of Franz Ferdinand, with particular reference to the role of the security agencies within the Serb state, and their links to the Black Hand organization. Did you know, for example, that the leader of the group, Dragutin Dimitrijevic, was also chief of the Intelligence Department of the Serbian General Staff, and that it was under his auspices that Princip and his colleagues were trained and instructed? The aims of the Black Hand were also supported by Nikola Pasic, Serbian Prime Minister of the day. Although he was not himself party to the murder conspiracy, he subsequently refused to hand over Dimitrijevic and other senior officers because, in his own words, this "would be a violation of Serbia's constitution and criminal in law." Clio the Muse 19:32, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
Consider as examples the assassinations of Mahatma Ghandi in 1948 by Hindu religious extremists. The article does not report rioting after the murder of that apostle of non-violence. By contrast, after the apostle of nonviolence Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr was assassinated by a political extremist in 1968, there was widespread rioting, loss of life and property damage in black communities all over the U.S. If the followers of a hypothetical assassinated Pope followed the teachings of Jesus to turn the other cheek, they would publicly forgive the sponsors of the killing, as Pope John Paul II forgave the Turk who shot him in an unsuccessful assassination attempt. On the other hand, the response might be like that to the killing of Dr. King (rioting by the masses) or the response to the assassination of Indira Ghandi which the article 1984 Anti-Sikh Riots says were organized by the ruling Congress party and its activists and sympathizers, in which thousands of Sikhs were killed. Edison 17:01, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Nike wearing anarchist[edit]

If someone could help me find a picture of the anarchist attacking the Seattle Nike World at the 1999 WTO protests I would appreciate it greatly. I've searched forever and can't seem to find it.Iconoclast

Art perception[edit]

Why is it that a weathered barn, with peeling paint, with an abandoned antique tractor in front, with the wheels off, is considered to be a magnificently rustic scene, suitable for painting or photographing, while the same thing, in an urban setting (an abandoned house with an old car out front, with the wheels off) is viewed as a horrible scene of urban blight and devastation ? StuRat 05:18, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

When did you stop beating your wife? No seriously, I know what you mean. I think it's partly because an unkempt farm may appear well-used, while an unkempt home may appear disused or abused. No citations forthcoming. ;-) Anchoress 05:24, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
"Picturesque" is a category of responses to landscape and art that wasn't discussed until the late 18th century, but already in the 17th century, Dutch artists like Hobbema and Rembrandt were drawing and painting peasant hovels for their pictorial qualities. --Wetman 05:41, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Its all about the relation of the objects to the landscape and what it implies. The first induces nostaglia or melancholy, the second suggests failure. Cars and tractors represent very different things.≈Bumblefart 07:01, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Who says that the urban scene is not suitable for painting or photography? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 11:13, 23 January 2007 (UTC).
That's the point of the first sentence of my reply. Anchoress 11:31, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
I know. I wanted to ask as well.

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 08:06, 25 January 2007 (UTC). I think it is all to do with perception. Tractors and barns are old tech. Old tech is appropriate in old settings, but not in modern settings. DDB 11:15, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Personally I think space and density have something to do with it - the 'run down farm' will be surrounded by miles of unspoilt countryside no doubt - whereas the urban scene will be surrounded by miles of exactly the same thing.(It's aquestion of how the images feel - one suggests noble decay, the other no hope place perhaps?). However if you've every seen a real run down farm - mangy animals, rotting feed bags, feral children etc you might change your opinion as to the 'rustic beauty of rural decay'. Also note that industrial decay is an often photographed thing and has a similar feel to your 'rusty tractor' image. 14:13, 23 January 2007 (UTC) (in other words for exactly the reasons you mention) 14:27, 23 January 2007 (UTC) meltBanana 15:36, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
Interesting, an abandoned car with the door off looks "picturesque" when placed in a rural environment, with a herd of sheep. I suppose an abandoned tractor in an urban setting would also look bad. The setting apparently is what makes the diff, moreso than the objects themselves. Perhaps it is the density of junk that matters, one or two pieces of junk in an otherwise pristine field provide a nice contrast, while a junk yard is just plain ugly. StuRat 19:51, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
I have always seen the tires still on the tractor. The oldest tractors had metal tires, so maybe that's what you saw. The poor farmeer may still be using the deteriorating barn and rusty tractor, since many owners of small farms work have a job elsewhere and farm in their spare time, or as a hobby, or tio help feed their families, so they cannot afford new barns and tractors. Remember that the barn is a relic of cows and horses. Old horse-drawn farm equipment is even more rusty and picturesque. Edison 17:07, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
I think the wheel is the metal part and the tire is mostly rubber. So, those old tractors had wheels with no tires. StuRat 19:43, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Old Book[edit]

I'm trying to remember a book my mom read to us when we were kids. More specifically, I'm trying to remember a particular scene. It involved what I believe was a field of poppies, and mirages of buildings in the distance that were so full of gold, they were upside down. Ring any bells? Black Carrot 05:55, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Absolutely no idea, although a few more details might help, like what year roughly would your mom have been reading this to you? Was it an illustrated book? Any more bits of the storyline? If you don't find the answer here, then I would try a post on Abebooks community in the Booksleuth section. It's free and has certainly helped me track down the titles of a couple of books that I'd all but forgotten. Mighty Antar 00:19, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Is your visual memory actually from The Wizard of Oz?--Wetman 05:02, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Douglas Adams-Last Chance To See[edit]

I would like to know how many hardback editions of the book 'Last Chance To See' by British Author Douglas Adams, were published by the London publishers. Who I believe to be Pan Publishing. I would sincerely appreciate your response.≠Catherine Blair 06:13, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Your best bet is to contact the various publishers direct. According to Amazon, a hardback edition has been published in the UK by William Heinemann and by Harmony Books. There are probably other publishers with the overseas rights. (I am not aware of Pan having published any hardback book in the UK.)--Shantavira 13:45, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

deleting pages[edit]

I created a page about my football team Frog Lane Rangers, others have seen this and edited it and it is now offensive, everytime i edit it they change it again, how do i delete this page to stop them doing it again? thanks tom —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Grimmy16 (talkcontribs) 07:48, 23 January 2007 (UTC).

It is already up for deletion. You should go to the page and comment on your opinion that it should be deleted. --Kainaw (talk) 08:00, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Jean Lafette's flag[edit]

What flag would the pirate Jean Lafette flown on his ship(s)? I think the old Skull & Crossbones is more of a contrived notion. That's to say. maybe a few pirates used it but I doubt is was a requirement. 08:54, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Do you mean Jean Lafitte? I believe Jean Lafette is an actress. --Kainaw (talk) 09:00, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
Caption=Only the blue field and stars would have been in the US Navy Jack during the War of 1812
Since he was a privateer (legal pirate), working for the US during the War of 1812, he may very well have flown the US flag. Specifically, I believe it was the custom to fly the naval jack, which is the blue field and stars only (no stripes). The full flag of that era is shown at the right, imagine that without the stripes. See United States flag. StuRat 19:21, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

"Interest"ing question - give me some credit[edit]

Since Muslims aren't allowed to earn interest on their money charge or pay interest, do they have credit cards? If so, how does that work? Do the companies just charge the merchants more to compensate for the "lost" income? Clarityfiend 16:50, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

If you know a credit card that pays interest, rather than taking it away, please send me an email with a link, as I wouldn't object to having more money. --Dweller 16:55, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I have this nice card just for you. There's just this little one-time setup fee... Clarityfiend 17:21, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
You may find the answer in our long and detailed articles Islamic banking and Islamic economics. Gandalf61 17:01, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps they use cards issued by people of some other religion which allows its members to charge interest to money loaned to nonmembers of that religion. Edison 17:09, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
In the U.S. in the 19th century there were obviously no credit cards. I have papers of my great great grandfather, showing that he would purchase something (goods, a horse, a piece of land) and give the seller a promissary note, either on a little printed form from a book or written out on the spot, stating that on a certain date, or on demand, he would pay the seller a specified price. I expect that the time value of the money was built into the sale (in 180 days I will pay X which includes say 6% interest over the value of the goods on the date of purchase). Thus he could buy and sell all sorts of things without carrying a huge purse of gold and getting robbed. They sem to have used these little notes rather than checks. They could settle up later at his house or the sellers house or the bank. The note could also be sold to someone else. perhaps at a discount if they thought it would be hard to collect the payment. Other contracts did specify interest paid annually on large investments. But either method would basically work in an Islamic country: promise to pay in a month, and build in a month's interest implicitly without ever referring to it as such. When the payment was made, the note was returned to the purchaser with a paid endorsement and the purchasor's signature was defaced. Edison 17:24, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
I didn't find anything in either article dealing specifically with credit cards. As for using cards from non-Muslim issuers, I don't think that's allowed either. Maybe they don't have them. That would be one more proof of the West's superiority over the Muslim world: the ability to go deeply in debt easily and conveniently. Clarityfiend 17:28, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

unexplained human body markings[edit]

how could a person have only on the left side of there body 1 finger that has what appears to look like a face 2 on lower left arm a letter under the skin that changes at times and3 a perfect hole on the left front lobe of skull that didn'y exsit before —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 20:04, 23 January 2007 (UTC).

We have no idea. Tell us who and where and what you are talking about. --Seejyb 21:01, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
We do not give medical advice. Your doctor or a dermatologist might be able to shed light on these phenomena. Edison 00:17, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
See pareidolia X [Mac Davis] (How's my driving?) 00:51, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Or Stigmata. Edison 05:07, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Well, less seriously, my wife has me under her thumb, and our children underfoot.

On a more serious note, you'll need to clarify your question DDB 09:42, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

January 24[edit]

Why did Attila need a pretext to invade Italy?[edit]

The marriage proposal sent by Honoria to Attila is often cited in the books as the pretext Attila needed to go to Rome. But why would Attila even need a pretext or any impetus? Wasn't he a conquerer, taking whatever he could? Why did he need to look presentable? 23:37, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Even conquerers have their limits! The point is that just before he received Honoria's unexpected proposal he had been intending to attack the powerful Visigoth Kingdom, based in south-west Gaul, and had entered into an alliance with the Emperor Valentinian III, Honoria's brother, to enable him to do so with a degree of security. Honoria's seeming offer of marriage opened up a far more attractive political prospect for the ambitious Hun King. Clio the Muse 23:46, 23 January 2007 (UTC)
If Italy was more attractive why didn't he just go for it? How did the offer from Honoria bolster his effort? 00:05, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, as I have said, his immediate objective was the Visigoths; Italy may very well have come later. Marriage to Honoria would give him added legitimacy in the Roman world, a link to the Imperial family, and the prospect of a large and bloodless dowry. It is important to remember that Attila was a politician as much as a soldier; and like all politicians he was first and foremost an opportunist. Clio the Muse 00:11, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
A reasonable man with reasonable grudges is usually better at securing allies or at least reducing opposition. Casus belli is a complex question and usually made up after the event to explain the outcome rather then prove the purpose. "Hairy Hun to save princess" sounds more like a romance novel than historical imperative. An early source, Jordanes in his Getica, mentions Honoria mainly to say how dishonourable she was, he does not say she brought Attila to Rome. Jordanes' account probably had more to do with exposing the bickering and corrupt state the imperial family had come to and comparing that with the awesome power of the papacy. Although of course pope Leo's diplomatic skills are seriously doubted by later historians. meltBanana 01:31, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

A conquerer always tries to have a good pretext (a reason) to justify his actions. It was the same with Julius Ceasar - "We are invading Gaul to secure our norhern borders", William the Conquerer - "We are invading England because the last king promised that I would be his heir", etc. We like (and perhaps even need them in a psychological level) to have reasons/pertexts/excuses for our actions. Flamarande 16:09, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

I think there may be some confusion as to the difference between a "pretext" and a "limit". True tyrants have no "limits" whatsover, yet human psychology being as it is, a good "pretext", as ridiculous as it may be, can add a great deal of perceived legitimacy to a conquest, and in turn this perceived legitimacy is more often than one would hope accepted as true legitimacy, seriously weakening the resolve the tyrant's targetted victims for conquest. The list is endless. For example, pretty much every one of Hitler's aggressions were couched with pretext. Mad as he was, he not once explained the invasion of one country or another "just because I feel like it". Saddam invaded Kuwait under the entirely invented pretext that Kuwait was a province of Iraq. Tyrants make good use of pretext to justify what is in reality their absolutely limitless hunger for conquest. Loomis 18:20, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Let me clarify that: a pretext is the official excuse a leader uses to justify something. Most of the time the pretext is only loosely connetcted to the true reasons. Using Attila; the pretext was that Honoria wanted to marry him. The true reason was wealth for Attila and his Huns. The true reason was Attila's need to enrich his tribe, further securing his position as leader and most importantly to keep the loyalty of his lieutenants. Flamarande 20:43, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Agreed. Loomis 08:52, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Living Person double disambiguity dillemma[edit]

A person's name in this encyclopedia listed as a sex offender (living in a different country) has the same first, middle, and last names as I do.
What do I do? Just learning about editing...
Can someone provide an example? brian 01:25, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Are you notable in a Wikipedia sense? If so, you could set up a disambiguation page. On the other hand, if you believe this other person isn't really worth noting, you can nominate the article for deletion. Otherwise, you're pretty much out of luck. I myself share the same first and last name with a moderately famous murderer in Victorian England. He rates an article and I don't. Go figure. Clarityfiend 01:46, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Beginning of World War II[edit]

Even though the academics accept 1939 (when Poland was invaded by Nazi Germany) as the beginning of World War II, why wasn't the beginning of World War II in 1931 or 1937 (when China was invaded by Japan)? I have heard the argument that it became a WORLD war when Europe was involved along with Asia. But if Asia was included as a theater of World War II, wouldn't it count as the BEGINNING of World War II. And even though it is called the "Second Sino-Japanese War", it became a part of World War II, therefore it is the BEGINNING of it. I have never heard of the "Germanic-Polish War" as it is accepted to be a part of World War II, why does World War II in Asia considered to be a separate war at first before 1939? Or do the scholars consider European wars more highly than Asian wars because of the Western political power? Swang 02:25, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

While we're at it, why don't we just say that WWII is really just the second half of WWI? It does make sense. The reason is because the Second Sino-Japanese War was between just China and Japan. Germany's invasion of Poland resulted in many countries (GB, France, Canada, Australia, Germany, etc.) declaring war (ie the World part of the War). --The Dark Side 03:14, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Periodization is always somewhat arbitrary — it is rare that events come in easy packages, and it never happens that they come without antecedents. In any case I think Dark Side's answer is most correct in this case: it's not just military action which creates a "world war", it's what happens when half of the world declares war against the other half, and vice versa. Which you don't get until 1939. In any case, some scholars have claimed that the invasion of China should be considered the beginning of WWII, if I recall, but it is a definite (purposefully being different) minority. -- 03:23, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
There are two kinds of people: those who arbitrarily divide things, and those who don't. Edison 05:09, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Swang, you have raised a highly interesting and partially unresolved question. There are indeed some well respected historians, including A. J. P. Taylor from my own country, who have put forward persuasive reasons why the incident at the Marco Polo Bridge in July 1937 might be taken as the beginning of the Second World War, rather than the German invasion of Poland in September 1939. Perhaps it would be best to see the whole process as one of a series of separate incidents merging, piece by piece, into a greater whole, which has nothing at all to do with any supposed superiority of European over Asian events. Think of the huge differences between the outbreak of the First and the Second Worlds Wars. If we set aside the ongoing crisis of the Ottoman Empire, and the two Balkan wars that emerged from this, the division in 1914 between peace and war, light and dark, could not be clearer: in a matter of weeks over the late summer the world had gone from one state of being to another, reflected most acutely in the many memoirs we have from this time. Now look at the situation leading up to the outbreak of the Second World War. Could anything, it has to be asked, be less clear? From the mid-1930's the world was beset by one political crisis after another. Aside from Japanese aggression against China, Italy invaded and conquered Ethiopia, Spain descended into a Civil War, where issues were fought out that far transcended a purely Iberian significance, Germany was expanding its borders in Europe by brutal diplomacy; and even Russia was involved in a brief but bloody and unofficial war with Japan. So why should 1939 be taken as the significant date, and not 1935, 1936 or 1937? For the simple reason that it was at this point that the individual crises, from a European perspective at least, ceased to be self-contained, or to bear any semblance of self-containment, in contrast to the Sino-Japanese War, which, to a significant extent, remained within its own political and strategic orbit, even so far as the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941. Clio the Muse 09:12, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Swang, I don't think the issue is Eurocentric, but Anglic. My understanding is both world wars are largely understood to have been world wars when England became involved. In WW2, England became involved when the Whig leader, Chamberlain, pushed Churchill into the Admiralty, after being humiliated by Hitler. The triggering event was the Invasion of Poland. DDB 09:36, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

First off, Chamberlain was a Conservative (Tory), not a Whig (which no longer existed). Secondly, England didn't become involved in either war on its own, Britain did. Thirdly, WWII is generally considered to have started when Hitler first took military action (against Poland), and had nothing to do with Chamberlain moving Churchill anywhere (which happened just after the outbreak of war anyway, not before). Fourthly, France became involved at more or less the same time as Britain in both world wars, so why are they specifically Anglocentric? -- Necrothesp 14:28, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
In fact, France became involved in World War I before Britain did, because of France's alliance with Russia, on whom Germany declared war when Russia mobilized to aid Serbia. It was Germany's declaration of war on Russia (in support of Austria-Hungary) that escalated the war from a conflict between Austria-Hungary and Serbia to a conflict involving other major powers. Britain did not become involved until Germany invaded neutral Belgium prior to attacking France. So the "Anglic" thesis fails in the case of World War I. Marco polo 14:43, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Actually they didn't really want to invade Belgium, they just wanted to move through it. They feared that there massive presence of French soldiers near the border with Alsace-Lorraine, that they took back in the Franco-Prussian war, so they decided to move through Belgium instead. They even sent a letter trying to persuade authorities not to consider this as an invasion, and to tell them they still wanted to "get along".Evilbu 19:32, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

My apologies for my innaccuracies, Necrothesp, I'd known the Liberal Party (UK) crumbled just prior to WW2, and assumed it had happened under Chamberlain's leadership, which it had, but not in the way I thought. I felt the question by Swang, in acknowledging the Invasion of Poland as the agreed beginning, but questioning why, deserved more than the affirmation 'because it is.' I don't feel the argument that historians are unbiased and objective satisfactory. In this case, I feel there is an established bias which ignores events in Asia, or mainland Europe, and considers events in terms of a perception by London establishment. I know it is sexy to blame Washington, but they miss the action during this time, so the finger points, not at Britain, (and I'll accept not England because of your assertion, and because it didn't exist as a causative entity) but a view I describe as Anglic, even though I am so wrong on so many points. DDB 23:40, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

I've hear people who say 1931 as the beginning of the Asian part of the Second World War. But Korea was even taken by the Japanese before World War I! Heck, it's been almost a century, and they still haven't become a single independent nation again!Evilbu 19:32, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Nice point Evilbu. Maybe 1905, when the Japanese and Russian fleets fought? DDB 02:22, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Napoleonic Era[edit]

Did other European nations declare war, and what not, on France to stop Napoleon's ambition? I used to think that, but then I read that the European monarchies were doing it to crush the ideals of the French Revolution. Which, if any, is true/more likely? --The Dark Side 03:29, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Well, we are dealing here with two distinct episodes: the French Revolutionary Wars, from 1792 to 1802, and the Napoleonic Wars from 1803 to 1814/1815. The first begins with an attempt to contain revolutionary concepts, and ends as a straightforward struggle against expansionism and imperialism. The second is a series of struggles against imperialism in the pure Napoleonic form. Clio the Muse 06:24, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Horatio Nelson entered parlaiment a few years before he died at Trafalgar in 1805. He was a Tory sympathiser, but entered as a Whig because he wanted to 'have a say.' He had been appalled at the excesses of the French Revolution, and felt England should invade to stop the killings (according to biographer Tom Pocock). Military strategy of the day had it easier to defend than attack. European nations opposed each other in the world scene, but generally left each other alone in Europe, where alliances meant that no one wanted anyone to have too much power.

When Napoleon 'did his thing,' Europe united against him. It had not been the first time this happened. Europe has opposed central powers since the time of Rome. Charlemagne and Louis XIV of France fought very hard for their gains.

In the end, both of Nelson's major successes against Napoleon (Trafalgar and Aboukir Bay) were to prevent French expansion. DDB 09:21, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

I heard that, after his return from Elba, the European powers declared war on Napoleon, rather than on France. Either this is the first time several nations are at war with one man (and his army), or the History Channel made another mistake. | AndonicO Talk · Sign Here 14:05, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
This is not entirely true; the Allied powers assembled in Vienna declared Napoleon an outlaw, and not the legal leader of France. However, it is not generally understood that they declared war on an individual, but rather on the illegal government of France - and it is not quite correct to say that Napolean was the government of France. See the article on the Hundred Days for a little background. Carom 14:46, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Yes, indeed, the War of the Seventh Coalition was against a nation, not an individual. Even after Napoleon's second abdication, and the second restoration of Louis XVIII, France was treated as a defeated power. The Treaty of Paris of November 1815 was far less generous than the treaty of the previous year, reducing France to the borders of 1790, imposing a large indemnity, and obliging the government to accept the presence of allied troops on French soil for five years. Clio the Muse 23:25, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

In response to the original poster: There is no single explanation for either set of wars, and it is a somewhat fruitless effort to try and reduce a series of fairly complex causes and rationales to a single one. Very few major events in history (or indeed, in the present time) have monocausal explanations. However, it is important to keep in mind that the event which directly precipitated the French Revolutionary Wars was really the execution of the king, and the declarations of war that followed were not entirely related to containing revolutionary ideals (cutting off the heads of kings was generally frowned on, particularly as most of the crowned heads of Europe were related, if somewhat distantly). Obviously, revolutionary ideals had played a role in the death of the king, but several countries (especially Britain) would have been less inclined to become involved if Louis had still been alive. Clio is also quite right to point out that this set of wars became very much an imperialistic struggle - in some way, a continuation of the Anglo-French wars of the earlier part of the century. The Napoleonic wars are, in some sense, a continuation of the unfinished business of the revolutionary wars, particularly on the part of Britain, which desired to establish itself as the only real colonial player. And, as Ddball says, the balance of power in Europe was very important. No country wanted to allow any other country to build up too much power on the continent, so Napoleon's ambition ultimately made war inevitable. Carom 14:46, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Murder in response to domestic abuse[edit]

Okay so I have this school assignment blah blah blah...Anyway, I need websites with laws regarding women that have murdered their domestic abuser. Google searches have turned up bupkis. Please help. (Sorry, not sure what else to say about this.) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 03:30, 24 January 2007 (UTC).

Try searching archives on female killers. While female killers have been known to be arbitrary, social conditioning tends away from the type of killers that are male. Try Crime Library DDB 09:02, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

See battered wife syndrome. StuRat 10:57, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

what's the deal with music?[edit]

yeh, this is kind of a general question, but I have a very general confusion. It's to do with musical scales. I understand that a note exactly one "octave" (which confusingly don't contain 8 notes in every scale system) above another is double it's frequency, e.g. in "western music" The A in the middle of the keyboard is 440hz then the next A up is 880hz. What I don't get is why all the notes imbetween have such obscure methods for determining how many hz they have between them, all these weird ratios and so on. Why not just divide those 440 hz between 440hz and 880hz into equal slices of 7; that is 62.85hz, and have that be the interval between each note? so:

A1 = 440hz
B1 = 502.85hz (440 + 62.85)
C1 = 565.71hz (502.85 + 62.85)
D1 = 628.57hz (565.71 + 62.85)
E1 = 691.42hz (628.57 + 62.85)
F1 = 754.28hz (691.42 + 62.85)
G1 = 817.14hz (754.28 + 62.85)
A2 = 879.99hz (817.14 + 62.85)
B2 = 942.85hz (879.99 + 62.85)

ok it doesn't fit exactly, and I had to round off a whole bunch of decimal points there, but wouldn't that be so much simpler? So who came up with the seemingly random hz intervals in the first place? Infact come to think of it, what's the point of making them fit into octaves at all? why not just have notes that keep getting higher/lower to the far ranges of human hearing but that never come back round to being exactly double that of a previous note? I assume part of the answer to that last one is because you can't have a keyboard with infinite keys/guitar with infinite strings etc., but with synthesisers I'd have thought it'd be possible... I'm guessing those reading this who know something about music are screaming inside right now at how completely confused I am, but I'm just trying to understand how all this works.--Krsont 06:06, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

The progression is geometric, not arithmetic. To go from middle A to the next A, you don't add 440, you double 440 (the same thing in this case, but you see my point. To go to the next, you would double 880). So you also need to double middle B to get the higher B (which your system doesn't do), etc.. Basically, there's a curve with some dots on it, and you're trying to join the dots with straight lines: It's not going to work. As to "why 8?" (and indeed, "why a curve?"), Octave has the answers you seek. yandman 08:22, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Why is the octave divided into 12 geometric steps? Because of a remarkable mathematical coincidence. Twelve is the only small number (I think the next is 41 or so) where you "just happen" to hit the magic 3/2 ratio (interval of a fifth) on the way to 2/1 (the octave). In other words 2^(7/12) is very nearly equal to 1.5. If this didn't happen to be so, the whole idea of dividing up octaves into an equal number of steps would be out! (See the last item here.) Wareh 14:33, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Ah ok, that does make a certain kind of sense... But the page octave doesn't quite answer all my questions... Because it isn't always 8 notes, is it? What about pentatonic scales? Or even Harry Partch's 43 note scale? How do they work? And my other question still stands: why octaves at all? I don't just mean 8 notes, I mean the entire thing where one note an octave higher than another is double it. Is it just that this system happens to let us make some nice sounds? has no-one ever experimented with not using scales of notes at all, just notes at random frequencies that never "loop back round", as it were, to a unison? --Krsont 15:00, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
"Octave" is an unfortunate word, since it does imply 8, but one could have any number of notes in an octave. Like most of the terms of music theory, we're stuck with "octave" for historical reasons.
why not just have notes that keep getting higher/lower to the far ranges of human hearing but that never come back round to being exactly double that of a previous note? -- You can do that if you want. Computers make this kind of thing much easier.
why octaves at all? ... Is it just that this system happens to let us make some nice sounds? -- Basically, yes. I think people are drawn to consonances. Singing the same pitch as someone else, for example, has a resonance and a "right sound" to it. You know when you are singing at the same pitch, you can feel it. Octaves are similar in having a deep sense of being harmonic. As people worked this out to fifths and thirds, systems of harmony developed, evolving into the 12 note per octave tuning common today. One problem with using frequency-ratio math to make notes (like 2/1 being an octave, 3/2 a fifth, 5/4 a third, etc), is you really do end up with an infinite number of notes. Also, the pitch you start with, your "root pitch", dictates everything else. You can't move to a new root pitch (modulate) without moving the whole tuning system, which is not so hard with a computer, but with a piano, say, would require a total retuning of the strings.
The use of 12 "equal steps" is relatively new as a standard. It is a kind of temperament. Instead of 12 equal temperament, various kinds of "meantone temperaments" were common, in Europe at least. The meantone systems evolved, eventually leading to equal temperament. One reason for temperament is to keep the number of notes required of instruments low, while still allowing instruments to play together and make complex music. As people became increasingly interested in modulating from one "root pitch" to another, or simply being able to play in different keys, new temperaments were developed. Problems included the existence of things like wolf interval, which sounded "howlingly" out of tune. Eventually meantone systems got pretty good at shifting keys and modulating. J.S. Bach's piece the Well-Tempered Clavier was composed in a well temperament that allowed one to play in 24 major and minor keys, which is exactly what the work is -- 24 pieces in 24 keys. Each key sounded different (had its own "color"), and some were more "in tune" than others, but none were howlingly bad. Not everyone was working with 12 steps per octave back then, some used 19, or more. But 12 turned out most popular. Finally, in the 1800s, the system of 12 step equal temperament became the standard. Its main benefit was that you could play in any key and everything would sound exactly the same, except higher or lower in pitch. Today the tuning is so ingrained it is rarely questioned. Sometimes it is said to be the most logical or best tuning system for one reason or another. But it is really just one compromise among many. Pfly 22:01, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Ok, that clears things up a little. I had already kinda got the impression a lot of it was historical, but I knew there was some kind of pattern/reason someone had based it on. I think I kinda get it now :p Thanks. --Krsont 22:36, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession by Daniel J. Levitin tackles most of this question. I found it helpful in understanding scales and intervals. Rmhermen 01:34, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Police Conscription[edit]

During World War II, were U.S. police officers conscripted into the military or was this restricted to civilians? --OGoncho 08:26, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

No exemption for members of the police force is mentioned in the articles on Conscription in the United States, Selective Service System, or Selective Service Act, nor could I find anything on the reference sites linking from these articles. ---Sluzzelin 21:56, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Strange, since in the United Kingdom being a police officer was a reserved occupation not subject to conscription (although many police officers did join up voluntarily). -- Necrothesp 23:28, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Okay, thanks. --OGoncho 21:34, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

US/Israeli joint military missions[edit]

After reading Loomis' responses to the previous Iran question in which he mentions a US/Israeli join military effort, I began to wonder - Has the US and Israel performed joint military missions before? The only one I know if is US military intelligence support for Israel in the 6-Day War which ended with Israel attacked the USS Liberty. --Kainaw (talk) 11:49, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

To be honest I'd have to do some serious research into that one. Given the extremely sensitive nature of mideast politics, the idea of an overt US/Israeli joint mission would be too much for even Israel's "moderate" Arab neighbours to stomach. Take the '92 gulf war. The US knew that any overt Israeli involvement would be disastrous, considering the fact that quite a few Arab nations were actually part of the coalition to oust Saddam from Kuwait. Imagine, for example, the image of Syrian and Israeli forces fighting side-by-side! GHWB knew the Israelis had to keep the lowest of profiles in that war, and the Israelis were smart enough to agree and keep out. On the other hand, I have no doubt in my mind that on a covert level, an incredible amount of vital Mossad military intelligence on Iraq was gladly shared with the US. But as I said, on the surface, the idea of overt US/Israeli joint military activity is likely far too sensitive to be undertaken given Arab animosity towards Israel. In fact, though this may be a bit of a stretch, I wouldn't be all that surprised if despite their public condemnation in UNSC Resolution 487, the US actually had advanced warning and gave Israel tacit approval to go ahead with the Osiraq bombing. But as I said, that much is a bit of a stretch, and is pure speculation on my part. Loomis 12:34, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

US Central Command has control of US operations in the Middle East, and North Africa. It was founded by Jimmy Carter's rapid deployment force concept during the Iran US embassy hostage crisis, and after the peace talks between Egypt and Israel. Centcom. They do a lot of work in Afghanistan, Iraq and have a media liaison unit that I find helpful with research. I don't know about joint operations or training, but I know that Israel is a liberal democracy of many religions and the kind of nation that might be a model for other nations. DDB 13:23, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Operation Moses involved the CIA and the IDF. No combat, though - it was a rescue mission. Rmhermen 19:20, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Writing in clay... and cuneiforms[edit]

I know the cuneiform script was the first major writing system for clay. They used a type of reed (whose tip was shaped like a wedge?) as a stylus. What species of reed is that?

Are there other ways of leaving patterns in clay, stone or wood? I can only think of runes and ogham. I think Buginese language was written vertically in bamboo.

I'm trying to think of a unique or original way to write in clay, stone or wood that looks different from these but keeps an ancient flavour. Is it possible to use round shapes somehow instead of straight lines? I don't know what kind of ancient tool would allow for this.--Sonjaaa 15:44, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Round tool - dried stem of a hollow woody plant might do - eg bamboo but smaller - cut to shape you could get curves... 17:10, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

How about writing with thumbs and fingers ? That would leave a series of dots and rounded lines, with fingernails leaving thin lines. StuRat 22:26, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

See Rosetta Stone --Dweller 13:15, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

In fantasy novel terms, the consideration is the consistency of the clay, the ability to fire it in a kiln and the robustness of the tool. Fingers anf nails would be tough. Bones of ones enemies might be cool. The clay needs to be held straight in a surface, and might need to be anchored in more than one direction if the writing involves multidirectional scoring. It would take an educational attainment, depending on the amout of skill, vis difficulty, required. DDB 02:20, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Find The Hidden Predicate[edit]

What are the predicate(s) in the sentence: "The man went home to find his ice lolly in pieces." This is not homework. We never even covered 'predicates' in school, but I was only in middle set for English... --Seans Potato Business 16:21, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

A "predicate" is what you assert about something. By the commonest English definition of Predicate (grammar), everything in your sentence after "The man" is the predicate. What the sentence predicates of the man is that he went home to find his ice lolly in pieces. Another distinction is between the attributive (see Attributive#Attributive_and_predicative) or predicative (meaning part of the core assertion, not just an attribute) use of various words and phrases. For example, "ice" in "ice lolly" is attributive because it specifies which/what kind of lolly we mean. "In pieces" is the most interesting phrase used predicatively in your sentence. It is not attributive, because it does not merely specify the lolly meant (this would be the somewhat unidiomatic "his in-pieces ice lolly," more likely "his shattered ice lolly"), but rather specifies how he found his ice lolly to be. It is thus used predicatively. Here's a clearer example of the two uses of the phrase "in the house": "The man in the house is running" (attributive, gives adjectival information) vs. "The man is running in the house" (predicative, gives adverbial information). Wikipedia should really have a broader discussion of this sense of attributive vs. predicative; I couldn't find anything except for that section of Adjective. Wareh 17:14, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

William Wordsworth biopic - by Ken Russell?[edit]

I had a look at both the William Wordsworth and Ken Russell articles, but didn't see anything about what I remember; a one-hour British TV production featuring an actor playing Wordsworth, roaming around the Lake Country spouting poetry, with typically Russell-esque brilliant colours and splash, though more restrained than his Tchaikovsky, Liszt and Mahler biopics. Does this ring any bells, or was it a different director? No mention of it on the Wordsworth page, unless it's Pandaemonium, but I don't remember Shelley being part of its subject-matter.Skookum1 21:05, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Skookum, the TV show you have in mind was called Clouds of Glory, made for Granada Television, and screened in 1978, with David Warner as Wordsworth, Felicity Kendal as Dorothy and David Hemmings as Coleridge. Shelley, of course, was not part of Wordsworth's Lake District circle, and thus is not depicted, though Julian Sands plays him in Russell's 1986 extravaganza, Gothic. Clio the Muse 23:12, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
Ahh, thank you. Would kind of like to see it again, actually, although I've lost my taste for "literary flicks" in times's not on the Wordworth page, though. Shouldn't it be?Skookum1 23:15, 24 January 2007 (UTC)
You can add it yourself, if you wish. Clio the Muse 23:28, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

January 25[edit]

Skull and Bones[edit]

It has been alleged that initiates must engage in homo-erotic activities in front of the group. I do not know if this has been authenticated, but no Bonesman that I know of has denied it. 00:23, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Thank you for that very enlightening information. Did you have a question? JackofOz 01:51, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
But it has not in fact been so alleged, not even by a fool. --Wetman 02:20, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Actually, muckracking blogs usually say that Skull and Bones members engage in mutual masturbation. I think it's just an amusing rumor though. 03:10, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Homo-erotic? Okay. It hasn't been denied because it has not been alleged yet. ;) X [Mac Davis] (How's my driving?) 02:37, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
If you're referring to the activities depicted in The Good Shepherd, I'm not aware that they are based on any actual allegations (although I must confess that I have no real expertise on this subject). Carom 02:51, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Arabic Names[edit]

For whatever reason, a little while back there seemed to have been a bit of curiousity in the press concerning the fact that unlike newsworthy individuals in the west, who are generally refered to by their "last" names (i.e. "Bush and House leader Pelosi scheduled to meet to discuss...."), Saddam Hussein is commonly referred to as "Saddam" rather than "Hussein" due to Arab tradition concerning names. "Hussein" is not Saddam's "family name" in the sense of Bush or Pelosi, but rather his father's given name, and therefore, according to Arab naming custom, "Saddam" is a more appropriate term than "Hussein" to refer to "Saddam Hussein". Fair enough. In fact it's not all that unusual for cultures to reverse the order of names (from our POV!). For example, according to Chinese naming custom, the family name comes first in order, before the given name. Mao Zedong is a perfect example. He's always been referred to as "Chairman Mao" and never "Charman Zedong", because "Mao" was his family name, and "Zedong" was his given name.

What I don't understand is why this particular custom, followed whenever referring to Saddam Hussein, doen't seem to be followed for any other newsworthy individuals in the Arab world. For example, has anyone ever read a headline such as: "Yasser meets with Anwar, Hosni, Hafez to discuss positions regarding Saddam". (Please ignore any historcal reality or lack thereof of any such meeting taking place!) Why has this Arabic naming custom only been applied to Sadam? Thanks in advance for any information helping me to understand this apparent inconsistency. Loomis 01:29, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

I think the use of his first name is a sign of disrespect. --Nelson Ricardo 02:15, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
(Edit conflict) Perhaps it's because there are many news worthy Husseins? I think it's because Hussein is both a last and first name. A quick search on Wikipedia brings up 33 people with that either as their family or given name. However, most of those people are either related to Saddam or have their last name spelt in a different manner. That leaves about 16 people, which include King Abdullah II bin al-Hussein and Hussein Rushdi Pasha. --The Dark Side 02:22, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
I think both answers are correct. There's no other "Saddam" that I know of, but there are loads of people named "Hussein". And of course, as Nelson Ricardo notes, it's partly to belittle him. It's kind of a "Kaiser Bill" situation. Bhumiya (said/done) 05:28, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm not learned in this area, but I imagine it is language and tradition that goes to names. And respect. In Australia, there was actual consternation when the US media interviewed our then PM, Bob Hawke, as "The Right Honourable Robert John Hawke." It seemed to surprise Bob too. I remember, in the '80s, that Saddam was referred to as Mr Hussein. I think Saddam was fixed in the public psyche before Bob Hope said it was 'Mad Ass' backwards. DDB 07:39, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

The biggest surprise about that was calling him "the Right Honourable". He was "the Hon", but not "the Rt Hon". The Rt Hon is used by members of the Privy Council, yet ironically Hawke was the very PM who in 1986 ended appeals by Australians to that august body, so he could hardly have been a member of it. JackofOz 09:29, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Actually I think you may be mistaken on that one Jack. What he did was end appeals to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, not sever ties with the Privy Council itself. In Canada we abolished appeals to the JCPC in 1949, still though, Elizabeth II is our queen, and as such, all PM's and Chief Justices are members of her privy council and retain the title of being "Right Honourable". Loomis 18:17, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
For Australia's links with the Privy Council, see Australia Act 1986. Until Prime Minister William McMahon it was standard practice for all Australian PMs to accept membership of the PC and thus become "the Rt Hon". However in 1973 Gough Whitlam refused the invitation and he was just "the Hon". Malcom Fraser accepted membership of the PC when he became PM in 1975, but Bob Hawke permanently removed the possibility of Australians becoming members of the PC; he and all subsequent PMs have been "the Hon". There are only 6 living Australians entitled to "the Rt Hon" for life (the Lord Mayors of the state capital cities are ex-officio Rt Hon, but only during their term as Lord Mayor). See Right Honourable#Australia. JackofOz 04:10, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for helping me better understand the Australian system, Jack. I stand corrected (partially!) Apparently you're right and that the Australian government has abolished the title of "Right Honourable". Still, I believe you may be confusing membership in the (Queen's) Privy Council (an issue relating to the legislative branch of government), with the abolition of appeals to the JCPC (an issue relating to the judicial branch). The two are unrelated. As in Canada, though we abolished all judicial ties to the Privy Council in 1949, we've aparently retained legislative ties to it.
A distinction must be made though. The UK and the Monarchy must be looked at entirely separately. In 1982, Canada formally abolished any and all legal ties to the United Kingdom. What we retained, though, is a common Monarchy. Canada is a Monarchy, however our Queen only "coincidentally" happens to be the Queen of the UK as well. Though I'm sure that this is not her official royal style here, our Queen is quite simply "Queen of Canada". To take an extreme hypothetical, should the Brits decide to abolish the Monarchy, though she may no longer be "Queen of the UK", she'd still be "Queen of Canada" (though it's anybody's guess how long that situation would realistically last). As a matter of fact, between the UK, Canada and Australia, Canada is most likely the most "Monarchist" (Hey! Were desperate to cling on to any and every possible sign of distinction between us and the Americans!). How interesting it would be, if the Brits and the Aussies abolished the Monarchy, and Elizabeth were to relocate to Ottawa where she's most welcome!
In Australia you seem to have done the opposite. You seem to have abolished legislative ties to the Privy Council (and with it the honorific "Right Honourable") several years before you abolished judicial ties (in the form what I've discovered by reading your link is the "almost" complete abolition of appeals to the JCPC). It must be remembered, though, that the JCPC is but the "judicial branch" of the PC. That's what had me confused. Plus I haven't slept in quite a while. With that in mind, please take these remarks as tentative at best, as I'd like to better review your links with a fresh, well rested mind. I'm actually quite interested in Australia's legal, constitutional and general history, as in many senses, Australia is, in many of these respects, the closest Canada has to "sister" country. Thanks again for the interesting info, and I truly do intend to follow up on it further, but now I must sleep. :--) Loomis 05:38, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Returning to my original question, I doubt that referring to Saddam Hussein by his first name was as a sign of disrespect, as that is how HE HIMSELF preferred (read demanded) to be referred to by his own people during his reign. As I mentioned, a little while back when this was a matter of interest, there was almost unanimous consensus that the more proper way to refer to people in the Arab world would be by their "first" name, as their "second" name is merely the name of their father. Sort of like way back in English history when names like "Johnson" and "Williamson" were used as surnames for those with fathers named "John" or "William". It was explained in detail that this remains the practice in the Arabic world. Yet Saddam seems to be the only one who retained this tradition. Is it perhaps falling out of practice just as it has in English? Loomis 16:21, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

I am surprised that no one yet has corrected the false overgeneralization that Arabs do not inherit surnames from their father's fathers several generations back. I kept assuming someone more knowledgeable than I would come along and do so. All I can say is that I have encountered several Arab families among whom, while living in Arabic-speaking countries, the surname has been passed down in this way. (Our Arabic name article is consistent with this: whether laqab or nisba—I am pretty sure that the article misses the fact that a laqab is equally well used in this capacity—these names can endure many generations, and a community can refer to an extended family over several generations by them. In the article's example, "'Al-Fulani' would be Saleh's family name.") I don't know how widespread this is, or the surnames of Saddam's ancestors, or much else about this. But I really hope someone will give a more adequate account here. Wareh 19:33, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Wareh. At least you put in an honest attempt at answering my question to the best of your knowledge. I share your hope that someone will provide a more adequate account. Thanks again. Loomis 22:54, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
I went to a knowledgeable source and confirmed what I suggested here. My source gives an example from her own research (the Ottomans were apparently great record keepers) of surnames passed down from father to children over at least seven generations and at least back until the second half of the 18th century. Those limits are just where her personal research happens to hit a dead end, and there's no reason to think the surname wasn't being passed down before then. The surname was clearly recorded as part of these people's legal names. Information in Hiro's Iraq: In the Eye of the Storm (which I browsed in Google books: search for "family tree") seems to corroborate the idea that Saddam's family lacked a proper family name & used a form of patronymic where the son took his father's first name as his second. (But I can't find a definitive record saying his grandfather was Abd al-Majid Abd al-Ghafur, with no Hussein.) My impression is that this is typical of Saddam's village roots (the seven-generation example is from a family that remained in the same metropolitan center all those years, and for what it's worth the name is an adjective that would qualify as a laqab), and that the more commonly applicable name "al-Tikriti," designating literally the tribe and/or town, could be recorded as information by which to specify an individual, but might not be part of the legal name in the same way as my true family name example. Wareh 19:28, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
IIRC, 'Saddam Hussein' is usually considered to be one name, (the closest analogue to a surname our late Iraqi friend had was 'al-Tikriti'). 'Saddam Hussein' has a special significance as a name within Sunni Islam, and is not considered to be divisable, (another example is the name 'Abdul Rahman', which, although often divided, strictly needs to be kept together within an Arabic name). 15:43, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
No, it's not "one name", but Abdur-Rahman is (see Abdul). A good rule of thumb is that family names are more common in areas that had a stronger Turkish presence during the Ottoman Empire: they are fairly common in Lebanon and Syria, and perhaps also in Jordan and Egypt. In many places, the laqab or nisba has come to be used in such a way. In Iraq, as in many other countries where Arabic names are common (e.g. Malaysia among Malays), the first name is one's own name (ism) and it is followed by one's father's name (nasab), with the bin/bint often dropped. It would be inappropriate to refer to someone with such a name by their second name, because you are then talking about that person's father! Of course, it is no sign of disrespect to use the personal name in this context: it is the only possibility when only one name is required. In the case of Saddam Hussein, he bore the nisba at-Tikriti, but this simply states that his family are from Tikrit, and is born by a large group of unrelated people. A general rule of thumb is: if a person with an Arabic name has a second name that looks like a personal name, it is likely to be that person's father's name rather than a family name. This doesn't always work, but catches a good few mistakes. — Gareth Hughes 15:49, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

German and French populations[edit]

I remember a French politician or general saying something about how there would always be more Germans (of Germany) then French. When did the Germans surpass the French in population? Or were there always more German people? I know it's hard to calculate this as the boundaries of modern day Germany differ from its historical incarnations and sometimes it didn't exist at all, but any estimate will do. --The Dark Side 01:36, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Dark Side, You have to go as far back as 1830 to find a point where the French population was greater than that of Germany within the borders established in 1871. At that time the French stood at 32.4 million, compared to some 29 million Germans. The big switch came in the course of the following century, the relative decline in the French contrasting sharply with the rapid expansion of the Germans. By 1939/40 the total population of France stood at 39 million compared with close on 80 million Germans within the pre-Anschluss borders. You will find the details here [6] Clio the Muse 07:00, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Thank you Clio. --The Dark Side 19:14, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
It would be interesting to know how many people counted as French or German would have actually identified themselves as French or German at that time. Language is of course an important factor here. (remember that there are several French regions that weren't Frenchspeaking before and some people still have another native language than French). I mean : how many would have been willing to fight for it?Evilbu 19:26, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
On a side note, demographers think that France will actually surpass Germany in a few decades due to its higher birthrates.--Pharos 19:56, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Again let us be clear : are we talking about a) people with the French nationality b) people with the French nationality within France c) people living within France. If we are talking about c, I think that's pretty obvious because France seems to have a lot more muslim immigrants.Evilbu 20:20, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Then again, Muslim immigrants become French (technically) after the second generation, although they aren't accepted as completely French until much later. | AndonicO Talk · Sign Here 23:44, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

American cities with European names[edit]

Is there a complete list on Wikipedia (or any other website, it doesn't matter) of every American city named after a European city provided with the European country where the city is found? For example: New York, NY and York, United Kingdom —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Swang (talkcontribs) 02:49, 25 January 2007 (UTC).

The closest thing I could find on Wikipedia is List of misleading place names, which includes, but isn't limited to, some examples from the United States too. It's not exactly what you asked for though. ---Sluzzelin 05:21, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
How would you deal with places like New Boston named after Boston, Mass., not Boston, England? Don't forgot places that have changed names like Nieuw Amsterdam? Rmhermen 06:01, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Many C18 names compliment holders of titles rather than the places from which the titles are derived. Then there are perfectly ambiguous generic names like Springfield.--Wetman 07:52, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Probably the majority of places in the United States have been named after some spot in Europe. That would be quite a list. The U.S. Board on Geographic Names allows you to search through every registered placename in the country.--Pharos 09:03, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
You'll also find many cities in Britain a history to their name. York is from 'Jorvik' and was originally Eboracum if my local history memory is any good. I'm guessing New England has a lot of cities/towns named after places in England. I haven't come across an etymology wiki yet (not that i've particularly searched for one) but that would probably be the place to find something like this. ny156uk 20:26, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Cambridge, Rome, St.Petersburg... the list would go on forever! | AndonicO Talk · Sign Here 20:28, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Forgive me for complicating matters, but on a point of information New York is not named after Old York, but takes its name from James, duke of York, the brother of Charles II. Clio the Muse 00:21, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

This last point is true for many placenames in the US seemingly named after places in England. Another example -- most of the Cumberlands in the US, like Cumberland, Maryland, were not named after Cumberland County, England, but rather after Prince William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland. As for a list, I've never heard of one, though it would be interesting to see. Pfly 02:45, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
But the Duke of York takes his name from York, just as every Duke/Earl changes his last name according to his fief. Traditionally the Duke of York was York, just as HM The Queen can still be referred to as "England". So it doesn't really complicate the discussion. 21:04, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
It is common for the U.S. cities to have different pronunciations than the European originals. Paris Tennessee is "PAIR-iss" rather than "Pah-REE" which is understandable, but I understand that Versailles, Kentucky is pronounced "Vur- SALES" and Athens, Ohio has the initial "A" pronounced as in "sale". Bourbonnais, Illinois used to be pronounced "burr-BO-nus " but they officially changed in 1974 to correspond to the French pronunciation, while Des Plaines, Illinois is still pronounced "Dess-planes." Cairo, Illinois is pronounced "KEHR-o" by locals and "KAY-ro" by people living farther away to the south. There could well be an article listing U.S. towns with stupid pronunciations of their names.Edison 05:21, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
I wouldn't call them stupid pronunciations. That implies that it's done out of avoidable ignorance rather than a matter of accents and language. I doubt everyone from New Orleans could pronounce Orleans the way the French without inordinate effort. The accent just doesn't suit it. I mean imagine someone speaking in a Southern-US accent and switching accents mid sentence to pronounce Orleans in French. It would be funny but pointless. 21:04, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
My favorite is MAD-rid, New Mexico. Pfly 05:54, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
I doubt anyone mispronounces Rome, New York. :-) | AndonicO Talk · Sign Here 10:17, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
And "New MAD-rid, Missouri," which has no excuse because it was founded in 1788 while Missouri was owned and governed by Spain as part of Louisiana. Edison 23:09, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
And Des Moines, which is pronounces Duh Moin in the US and Day Mwane in French. New OHR- LEANS in Louisiana and OHR-LAY-YAWN in France. Basically, names related to Spain and the Spanish language can mostly be found in the southern and southwestern states (New Mexico, Nevada, California, Texas, etc.) French names are found most along the Canadian border and along the Mississippi, the area of the Louisiana Purchase. Dutch placenames can mostly be found in the areas of the first Dutch settlers (New York state, New England) and in the areas where many Dutch immigrants went in the 19th and 20th century (particularly Michigan). AecisBrievenbus 23:15, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
And LYE-ma, Ohio. User:Zoe|(talk) 23:27, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

I don't know if the above discussion has answered some questions that you may have had, Swang, but our Lists of North American place name etymologies might be of use to you. AecisBrievenbus 22:09, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Slavery in ancient Rome[edit]

Slavery was abolished in ancient Rome (before 476 AC)? There was slavery in Byzantine Impere? --Vess 15:17, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

There's some info under Slavery#Greece. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 17:07, 25 January 2007 (UTC).

No, Vess, slavery was not abolished in Ancient Rome, though the advent of Christianity eventually brought gladiatorial contests to an end. However, changing economic conditions meant gradual changes in the conditions of servitude. Bit by bit, agricultural slavery was transformed into new modes of serfdom, as the Classical World gave way to the Middle Ages. In practice, outright slavery and landed serfdom went hand in hand for centuries, through the Byzantine period and beyond. Even the church owned serfs and slaves. Clio the Muse 19:23, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

While slavery has never been abolished from the world, it has become uneconomic for progressive economies. Sexual slavery is still prevalent in some cliques. Laws are rarely made for social reasons .. DDB 02:11, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Fogel and Engerman have argued in Time on the Cross: The Economics of American Negro Slavery that slavery at least in the 19th century was still economically profitable. AecisBrievenbus 23:19, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

The Study of Mankind[edit]

defend the maxim "the proper study of mankind is man"

I cannot defend this maxim; the proper study of man is homework, which he must do himself. Daniel (‽) 18:23, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

To say nothing of women! Seriously, this is just too big to swallow whole. Break it up and come back with some more specific questions and we will see what we can do. Clio the Muse 20:22, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

On the face of it, and I've seen debating topics like it, the issues are what a debater finds convenient.

A way of viewing 'the maxim' is to compare it with other statements. 'A proper study of the ocean is fish.' 'A good predictor of future behaviour is past experience.' One summary of the statement is that the collective can be seen through studying parts. One cannot coneive a million man army, however, by picturing a school assembley, and imagining a thousand such schools, one gets an idea. DDB 02:06, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm not sure that it what it means. I think it is saying, "mankind should be studying man (as an idea, as a species, as an organism, whatever)." It is saying that in the end that the end all of the examination of the world is to examine ourselves, I think, which is not at all indefensible (you could make a good argument of this using quantum physics, which in the end requires you to factor aspects of the observer into your thinking — in the end, the observer cannot separate him/herself from the observation, at some level). -- 19:07, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Let Pope do it[7], i don't know why we should defend such a ridiculous utterance.—eric 02:16, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

I skimmed the Pope poem and found it quite humorous. I think in the end the conclusion is, "instead of trying to study the world, if you study yourself you'll realize you're an idiot, and should let God tell you about how the world works," or something like that. But I only skimmed it quite quickly, and am no poet. -- 19:08, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

You might also break the sentence into parts. For example, Mankind is really two words, 'mank' and 'ind.' But I haven't the foggiest what they mean DDB 10:17, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Russian leader who made Russia "multiethnic"[edit]


I recently read a Wikipedia article about a Russian leader ( a tsar perhaps) who is credited with expanding Russia and making it a (more) multi-ethnic country. Unfortunately I forgot which one, but I'm interested in learning how Russia got its borders and different groups of people, so I would really like to find him again. Remember, the article explicitly said that. Thank you!Evilbu 19:35, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Evilbu, Russia has always been multi-ethnic to some degree or other. A huge open territory with little in the way of natural barriers, and surrounded by countless nomad groups could scarcely fail to be otherwise. But Russia, in the sense we understand it today, really begins to take political shape with the expansion of Moscovy, specifically under Ivan III and Ivan IV. The latter, also known as Ivan the Terrible, the first Tsar as such, may be the specific leader you have in mind. It was he who by the conquest of the Khanate of Kazan in 1551 greatly expanded the borders of Moscovy, ending centuries of Tartar domination of Russia. Clio the Muse 19:55, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Of course! I knew people would tell me this, but I'm really trying to find that particular article back, and those two articles don't even contain the word ethnic. Thanks for your efforts though. (I think it was because of eastwards expansion).Evilbu 20:04, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Please read again the opening paragraph on Ivan IV, which emphasizes his role in the creation of a 'multiethnic' state. Slowly, always slowly. Clio the Muse
 !! So it WAS Ivan IV. I guess I need to handle the "search" function a bit more carefully. Thank you and please forgive this reckless youth!Evilbu 20:21, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

Supreme Court[edit]

Hello, my name is sara zinn. I am having some trouble with my social studies homework. I need to know who all makes up the Supreme Court. (email removed)

Sara Zinn —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 23:07, 25 January 2007 (UTC).

Hi, Sara. It's best not to include any email details here. Anyway, you should find all the information you are looking for on the page on the US Supreme Court, which includes a picture with the names of all of the incumbent Justices. Clio the Muse 23:20, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
The Supreme Court of Canada is made up of nine Justices: Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, Michel Bastarache, Ian Binnie, Louis LeBel, Marie Deschamps, Morris Fish, Rosalie Abella, Louise Charron and Marshall Rothstein. Hope that helps. Loomis 22:43, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

January 26[edit]

English Channel[edit]

I got a question:

What are some uses for the English Channel. And also when in(years) , and how was the English Channel Made. Phoenix_X91 —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 00:43, 26 January 2007 (UTC).

What "english channel"? --Wooty Woot? contribs 00:49, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
The English Channel is used for sailing, transporting cargo, piracy and keeping the English away from the French. The English Channel was made by the retreat of the ice caps around 8500 years ago. Maybe you are thinking of the Channel Tunnel? meltBanana 02:37, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
Oh, THAT English Channel. Perhaps I've been watching too much T.V. --Wooty Woot? contribs 04:07, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
I thought the same thing until I read "What english channel?" :) X [Mαc Δαvιs] (How's my driving?) ❖ 11:44, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
Or perhaps the OP is confusing a Channel with a Canal. There are quite a few "English Canals" constructed at various dates in history. However the English Channel is a natural geographical feature. Loomis 16:05, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
I think I explained all of that quite decently here : [8] :) Evilbu 17:40, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
It keeps the Frogs out of Blighty. --Nelson Ricardo 08:00, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

i think the (dare i say, american) people who asked "what english channel" would find the question less ambiguous if they stopped confusing England with the UK (or indeed, Britain). England has no single national tv channel even in the UK. indeed there are very few english national anythings becuase, well, England isn't a nation state - FACT! ....... 15:27, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Booting the President of Vice[edit]

Can the President of the US unilaterally fire the VP, or is there some formal procedure required if the VP doesn't want to go? Clarityfiend 06:28, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

The House of Representatives can impeach the VP. The President does not fire him. Also, the President cannot override a VP impeachment with a pardon. Finally, if the VP is impeached, Congress gets another jab by requiring the President's newly nominated VP to be confirmed by Congress. As with most of US politics, the power is in Congress, not in the Presidency. We just have over 500 people in Congress pointing at the President and the President all alone pointing back. So, it is easily assumed that the President is in power. --Kainaw (talk) 06:40, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

You might wish to do a case study on Spiro Agnew. In a fictional sence, the US President is capable of embarrassing his running mate, and setting them up so that they feel no choice but to be honorable. That scenario presupposes a lot. DDB 10:09, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Agnew resigned because he was being charged with tax evasion and, I believe, money laundering. It had nothing to do with Nixon - though I'm sure there are plenty of revisionists and conspiracy theorists who can work up some story about Nixon framing Agnew because he knew Agnew wouldn't pardon him. Then, Nixon brought in Ford in a deal that Nixon would leave and Ford would get to be President in exchange for a pardon. Of course, none of that crackpot theory is based in reality. --Kainaw (talk) 11:06, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
An interesting case is Eisenhower's rocky relationship with his VP, Nixon. The men were clearly not on the best of terms, and Eisenhower only included Nixon on the 1956 ticket for political reasons (believe it or not, Nixon was quite popular at the time!), and despite his personal feelings for the man. According to the wiki article, when Nixon was nominated for president in 1960, Eisenhower only very reluctantly supported him, and when Eisenhower was asked to name a decision Nixon had been responsible for during his Vice Presidency, he replied "Give me a week and I might think of something." This was a blow to Nixon, and he blamed Eisenhower for his narrow loss to Kennedy. Now if Eisenhower had the power to fire Nixon sometime in his second term, I would imagine he would have done so.
On the other hand, if by the "President of Vice" you're referring to the heads of either the ATF or the DEA, I'm pretty sure the president has the power to fire them at will. :--) Loomis 15:43, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Laws regarding public display of firearms in New York City[edit]

What are the Laws regarding public display of firearms in New York City? Are you able to walk around in the streets with hunting rifles if the weapons are unconcealed and displayed nonthreatingly? Also whats the NYC laws for puchasing and owning hunting rifles and shotguns? --Nra4eva 13:41, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Try these links, [9] and [10]. I hope you find what you are looking for. A friendly advice: avoid carrying guns at all. Many gun-related accidents have cost too many lifes everywhere. In the current clima of fear you only have to be unlucky once to find a scared trigger-friendly fool who will shoot you because you carried a gun and he was afraid for his life. Flamarande 21:03, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Whatever the law is, New Yorkers perceive people carrying guns openly but not wearing police uniforms as possible murderers. It is just not done. If you walk around or take public transportation in New York openly carrying a firearm, you are going to create a very tense situation that could end up costing your own life or the lives of others if, for example, you made a move that someone (perhaps with a concealed weapon) perceived as threatening. Marco polo 23:37, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

If I see you, I will run to the NYPD. This is serious. The police do their job so there is no need of a handgun. This is a very high priority for law enforcement. Plus, what are you going to hunt in NYC? Rats? It is ridiculous. 75Janice 26 January 2007

"Open carry" is illegal in NYC[11] and a permit from the city is required to own a firearm, which is stricter than many places where a state permit is required or none at all. Rmhermen 00:43, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Youngest Soviet Field Marshal- Front Commander[edit]

I read in Glantz's Clash of Titans that the youngest Soviet front commander during World War 2 was Jewish and he faced antisemtiism from Stalin. Does anyone know who this Field Marshal was? --Stalin1942 13:53, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

No, but that reminds me that Hitler too had many Jews as generals in his army. Maybe try History of the Jews in Russia and the Soviet Union#Under Stalin (1922-1953). | AndonicO Talk · Sign Here 13:56, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
There were several Jewish front commanders during World War 2, and it's hard to point out who Glantz was referring to. Two candidates are Yakov Kreizer and Semyon Krivoshein. For more, see Category:Russian people of World War II, Category:Military history of the Soviet Union during World War II and Category:Soviet people of World War II. AecisBravado 14:51, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Are you sure this was a marshal? As far as I know, of all of Stalin's wartime marshals only Rodion Malinovsky had any Jewish background; and while he was the youngest (born in 1898) I am not aware that he suffered to any degree from the Vozhd's alleged anti-semitism. I have a question for you, AndonicO. Who on earth, I have to ask, were the Jewish 'generals' in Hitler's army? Clio the Muse 14:54, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Having read the article again, I presume that Glantz was referring to Major General Yakov Kreizer, who had to face serious anti-semitism (as if there is also such a thing as trivial anti-semitism) after 1945. AecisBravado 14:57, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
The only Jewish generals of Nazi Germany I could find are Luftwaffe General Helmut Wilberg and General Johannes Zukertort. Both are only half Jewish and received German Blood Certificates. --The Dark Side 02:30, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Would "Half-Jewish" mean having only a Jewish father? 惑乱 分からん 12:53, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Luftwaffe Field Marshal Erhard Milch, Goering's chief deputy, was almost certainly half-Jewish. See his article for details. -- Necrothesp 18:40, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Since we're looking for a Front commander, it would presumably be Ivan Chernyakhovsky. But he wasn't a marshal, and wasn't definitely Jewish. Kreizer was an Army commander during WWII, although he did command a Military District (Front-equivalent post-war), and Krivoshein was a Corps commander. Angus McLellan (Talk) 16:02, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Juvenile violence[edit]

Has juvenile violence or crime been up or down in the last 25 years in the US? What about other industrialized countries? Oskar 15:29, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes. It has been up and down in the last 25 years in the US, and in most other industrialized countries as well. --Carnildo 22:45, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

There is lots of theory regarding juvenile crime. Bringing up children to become productive, happy adults is a process known and practised for thousands of years.

Juvenile crime is related to poverty, but not caused by it, and not solely dependant on it, many rich kids being violent as well.

Child raising is highly related to juvenile crime, but again, it doesn't cause it, and some well brought up kids become delinquent.

Dr Phil can give you some insights into juvenile violence. As can Judge Judy.

As for rates, statistics are not equal in aspect, so comparing rates from fifties to nineties is a less than meaningful exercise.

Violent crimes involving guns at schools is rising. Many agree that media have much to be blamed for popularising this behaviour. Dumb gun laws and absent parents don't help. Violent pornography is readily accessable to all, and most case studies I've seen link drugs, pornography and mistreatment of animals.

Worth noting, there is less violence now than before, despite the rise of islamo fascism. Educational attainment is higher for all ethnicities in all progressive nations. DDB 01:04, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

OK, here's some actual numbers. In 1980, juveniles (12-17) were involved in 812,000 of the 3.8 million "serious violent crimes" reported, according to the FBI. In 2004, they were involved in 345,000 of the 1.6 million violent crimes reported. The rate of serious violent crimes per 1,000 adolescents dropped from 34.9 in 1980 to 13.6 in 2004. So yes, juvenile crime has dropped substantially, along with violent crime in general. See this Excel file: [12] -- Mwalcoff 17:39, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Here's a baiting theory. Some people have noted that the drop in violent crime in the past couple of decades comes about 16 to 25 years after Roe vs. Wade. The theory goes that unwanted pregnancies often result in poor, badly-parented kids who grow up to be criminals. When those unwanted pregnancies were terminated, a certain number of criminals were simply eliminated. Obviously, coincidence does not imply causation, but it's a theory.TheSPY 01:33, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Is there progress in science and psychology in particular?[edit]

Hey guys, I have been looking around various sites and came across this one, by far the best in reguards to overviews of various philosophers of science. However, I can find no relevence to psychology, I am aware of the various theories, eg..popper,khun,lakatos but how could these be applied to psychology in particular. It would be great if someone could get the ball rolling on this one...cheers 16:05, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

If you can get your hands on an introductory university-level psychology textbook, most of these give a brief history of psychology. And yes there's been loads of progress, for instance Freud's Oedipus complex theory has now been broadly dismissed as fanciful. We now have live-action imagery of the brain at work, as it responds to various stimuli. If that's not progress I don't know what is. Vranak
Kuhn et al would not call that "progress" necessarily. It is more complicated than having claimed that old theories are out of date or that new discoveries have been made. And introductory textbooks are the last place to look for good histories — they are histories written to situate the practitioner within the discipline, and of course always tell triumphal, whiggish stories. -- 19:02, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
It seems that physiologists do single cell recording in a cat's brain like David H. Hubel and the results go into psychology textbooks as new psychology discoveries, when they are purely hardware. Similarly, we now have functional MRI by neuroscientists showing what brain regions are at work when doing what task, and it is claimed as psychology research. Psychology is akin to the study of computer programming, and this process is akin to claiming new discoveries in computer programming when a new type of CPU chip (hardware) is designed. The software (psychology) discoveries that actually pan out are harder to find. Thsy might include Cognitive behavioral therapy now in vogue, which originated in the 1950's. In the history of psychology, the research paradigms of one era seem to be discredited and pretty much forgotten in the next era. Graduate students 50 years later often have not even heard of the controversies and research topics of their predecessors. Psychologists quit the physical sensory measurement paradigm of Fechner, they abandoned the reflexology of Muller, they moved past phrenology. Psychoanalysis, which saw things like libido as pressure reservoirs in the psyche like pistons and boilers in a steam engine, is out of vogue. They quit the introspection of Wundt, and the behaviorism of Watson and Skinner. The fad of analyzing mental processes as analogs to computer functioning (human informatin processing) is passe. In physics, Einstein refined the equations of Newton, but Newton is not totally passe and forgotten, and his equations work wonderfully over a wide range of scales. Chemistry and electricity from the 19th century and before are still the foundation of today's more refined and extended theories(Laws of Boyle, Charles, Coulomb, Ampere, Kirchhoff, or Ohm). Psychology just seems to move from paradigm to paradigm, without laying a sound foundation that the next generations of researchers refine and build on, while the intro textbooks claiming as its own discoveries in physiology. The solid stuff in intro psych textbooks seems to be the biology.Edison 18:26, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
If I recall Popper famously considered psychoanalysis to not qualify as a science under his rubric, though he also considered Darwinism not to as well (but later retreated into saying that he thought it was an "explanatory framework" which could create theories, and thus was OK by him. I don't think he ever retreated on psychoanalysis). I can't think of a time where I have seen Kuhn discuss psychology explicitly except so much as he drew heavily on Piaget for his own thinking (out of the approach of Koyré). Lakatos I know considerably less about.
I'm not sure Kuhn would regard psychology as being different from any other sciences he discusses, except for the fact that as a over-arching category it probably contains many approaches which he would consider to be more akin to social sciences (never agreeing on basic principles) than a hard science. But that is my own speculation. -- 19:02, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Psychology is a pretty broad subject. It has branched out over the last hundred years into physical areas and social areas. There is greater depth to these areas. Is that progress? I understood the Ancient Egyptians believed thinking came from the heart. Certainly, there has been progress since then.

Social Psychology has advanced. 1920's pop psychology, which grew in the wake of the developing study, was used by the more ancient devotees of snake oil. As with all things, Psychology, as a science, owes much to things that precedes it, and rebadges them. All scientific experiments, on people, refer to the effect whereby people that believe they have a working product will feel it's effect. Yet that effect was seen, and predates modern Psychology by thousands of years.

In terms of Lakotos, Kuhn, Popper et al, Psychology will not 'progress' until it is transformed. While tools may be better, specifics ever more detailed, Psychology is little different from when Freud worked with it. DDB 00:39, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

I think you are mixing up up "psychology" (a very broad category including quantitative and non-quantitative forms of study) with "psychotherapy" (a more limited category, not at all necessarily Freudian, but all in more or less the same methodological bag). -- 02:43, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Righteous reasons for war.[edit]

Sometime in the ancient past a pope made a list of what the reason for war that the Vatican would accept in order for a war to be sanctioned by the pope. Who was the pope and what were the righteous reasons? The reasons are important because if a war is not sanctioned as righteous it is more difficult to get any form of backing including volunteers. Known reasons: war to end war, make the world safe for democracy. Recent military actions have been called police actions until Iraq became for "democracy".

You might look at just war as a starting point. I see no popes there but there are a number of Christian theologians. Police actions usually refer to the fact that the involvement has UN sanction. I would suggest that all parties in wars generally think that their side is "just" (initially, at least). Few actually resort to theories of just war to think so, though — it is usually more primal, a "revenge" theory or something like that. -- 18:52, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

I know of no specific point at which the Vatican decided that there was a given set of circumstances that would allow a pope to justify violence in any abstract sense, or to legitimate war if a certain number of a priori conditions were met, if it might be so expressed. Rather responses have developed over time and in accordance with prevailing historical circumstances. Although the early church fathers, particularly Tertullian, were inclined to condemn any form of state violence or warfare, attitudes began to change after the conversion of the Emperor Constantine. As the emperor was the instrument of God, Christian soldiers, tolerated before at best, were now given specific sanction by the church. In other words, fighting was acceptable when it was in the emperor's service, insofar as this service could be defined as the service of God. It was not the way to salvation as such; but neither was it the way to hell. St. Augustine of Hippo was the first of the great churchmen to give some of these ideas a more philosophical form. In the City of God he condemns war, but qualifies this by saying that violence must be countered by violence in the preservation of peace. What is wrong is not war itself but some of the motives behind war, specifically greed, the desire for power, feelings of revenge or simple cruelty. If war, on the other hand, is waged to restore peace, the soldiers become peacemakers.

The just war and the just ruler, therefore, went hand-in-hand. But what if the ruler is not just: what if Caesar himself is the problem? This is an issue that first comes to serious prominence for the Papacy in the eleventh century, during the reign of the Emperor Henry IV. The church had steadily emerged from its position as 'hand-maiden' to the state, and had become a major player in its own right. Pope Gregory VII, under threat from the emperor, urged all Christian warriors to rise in his defence, the first time in history, I believe, such an appeal had ever been made. This was not just permitted violence-something reluctantly sanctioned by the church in the past-but violence that carried a promise of reward; righteous violence, in other words. This, in essence, was the beginning of the notion of crusade, or holy war, later to be given a much more specific direction by Urban II and, above all, by St. Bernard of Clairvaux. By the early thirteenth century it was even possible for Innocent III, the greatest of the medieval popes, to declare, far removed from the position taken by Tertullian, that failure to fight could, in certain circumstances, be considered as a sin.

Of course, the historical circumstances in which these concepts were conceived no longer apply; but the church has not abandoned the notion of the just war, though it takes great care in defining the terms for such a course of action. Paragraph 2309 of the Catholic Catechism outlines some of the essential preconditions:

  • The damage inflicted by the aggressor on the nation or the community of nations must be lasting, grave and certain;
  • All other means of putting an end to it must have been shown to be impractical or ineffective;
  • There must be serious prospects of success;
  • The use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated. The power of modern means of destruction weighs very heavily in evaluating this condition.

Well; there you go! Sorry, this has turned out to be longer and more detailed than intended; but I hope it goes part of the way towards answering your questions. Clio the Muse 20:30, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Thomas Aquinas is the name I associate most readily with the concept of a just war - not a pope I think but a saint.

See or search for 'thomas aquinas just war'

Apparently he says there must be a 'just cause'...Hope that helps. (Is your name tony blair/george bush by any chance??) 23:38, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

January 27[edit]

genocide in 2008[edit]

Where in the world is genocide occuring 2006

Your question is unclear. The title gives the year as "2008". Of course it is impossible to predict what will happen in 2008. The text of your question uses the present tense but mentions the year "2006". The year 2006 has already finished. The only place widely considered a site of genocide in 2006 was Darfur. The killing and induced starvation continues today, so this can still be considered a case of genocide. Marco polo 01:02, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
(After edit conflict-and with the same general observations as Marco) The page on Genocides in History has some contemporary and near-contemporary information. Clio the Muse 01:06, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

It is worth noting that the word, Genocide, evolves with usage. The UN had difficulties making the charge of Genocide stick in the aftermath of Nazi Germany, or Cambodia, and the definition has changed so that, in a legal sence, pastoral care activity has been labeled genocide, as with Australia and her indigenous population. DDB 01:11, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm not sure how you define "pastoral care activity", but surely it was the killing of Aboriginal people that was labeled genocide? This didn't happen in 2006, however. --Grace 05:09, 29 January 2007 (UTC)


Do you have data about Greek Gods and Goddesses and their relationships with each other and mortals organized, on a timeline, or perhaps, family trees that I can use as a resource for my sixth grade Social Studies classes? Thank you. Rita: 00:40, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Rita, the pages on the Twelve Olympians and Greek mythology should give you all the information you are looking for. Clio the Muse 00:51, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Oh, and one of the best is -- DLL .. T 19:43, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

political parties in Lebanon[edit]

Which political parties in Lebanon are: a)Shi'a? e.g. Hezbollah b)Christian? e.g. Kataeb Party c)Sunni? e.g. Rafik Hariri's party d)Druze?

Look over the List of political parties in Lebanon and the Politics of Lebanon. Clio the Muse 00:54, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

they really didn't help that much about which is which.

The problem is there are such a large number of political parties, groupings and associations, and the divisions into specific 'faith communities' is not that clear cut. But for the sake of simplicity the main alignments are as follows;
  • Amal-(Afwaj al-Mouqawma al-Loubnaniyeh)-mainly Shia Muslim and pro-Syrian.
  • Free Patriotic Movement-mainly Marionite Christian, but with a secular philosophy.
  • Future Movement -(Tayyar al-Mustaqbal)-dominated by Sunni Muslims, but with significant support from other religious groups.
  • Hezballah-Shia Muslim.
  • Lebanese Forces-Christian.
  • Progressive Socialist Party-secular in ideology, although it enjoys significant Druze support.
  • Kateb Social Democratic Party-(Phalange)-Christian.
  • National Liberal Party-mainly Christian.
The Rafik Hariri Martyr List, also known as the March 14 Alliance, includes the Future Movement, the Progressive Socialist Party, Lebanese Forces, Kateb, National Liberal Party and others, and is not bound, therefore, by any specific faith commitment. It is opposed by the March 8 Alliance of Amal and Hezballah. If you have read the pages I flagged up you will see that there are a great many other groups and parties, too numerous to list here. The picture is highly complex. Clio the Muse 20:38, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Political parties in Bangladesh[edit]

Which political parties in Bangladesh are Islamist?

You may be able to find the answer in the Politics of Bangladesh. Clio the Muse 00:58, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

same thing with Lebanon.

You will really have to do some of the work yourself! The Bangladesh article has links to individual pages on the main political parties. If there is insufficient information here you might try a general google search. My understanding is that the most important religious-political groups are the Muslim League and Jamaat e Islami. Clio the Muse 20:46, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Islamic Oikya Jote and Khelafat Andolon (Part of Awami League's alliance) are also Islamist parties.

What are the lessons aristocrats need to learn?[edit]

I know some of those lessons are poise, and manners. What are all of them?

I don't know if there's a list somewhere, but (not all apply to both sexes): horsemanship, fencing, shooting, all the classical forms of education (latin, greek, french, mathematics, geography, history, art, music), military sciences, fine needlework, a lot of memorisation (historical kings and queens, geneology of peers, literature, the Bible), they would be expected to be proficient at a few sports and games, and be able to keep up with current events. Anchoress 05:39, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
...public self-control; diplomacy; setting an example; perfect directness of manner; a good but unostentatious eye for appraising the qualities in horses, dogs, women, houses, wine, pictures; estate management and land management; the art of conversation and of discreet networking at high strata; sports: polo, lawn tennis, sailing. --Wetman 08:29, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Horses, dogs and women? In just the right order, too, don't ye know. Almost all of the above is the purest fantasy, straight from Lord Circumference and Lady Tangent's Book of Etiquette, which has been out of print these last one hundred and fifty years. I'm sure Flashman would recognize the attributes; but as far as the modern world is concerned it is complete nonsense. All good fun, I'm sure. What are the lessons modern aristocrats-both the female and male versions-need to learn? Why, public relations, stock market options and how to marry into money, American money for preference! Clio the Muse 08:42, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
A good British reference, for those without firsthand experience save through Regency bodice-rippers, is David Cannadine's The Decline and Fall of the British Aristocracy, now in paperback. I'd bet his The Rise and Fall of Class in Britain is good too. Cleveland Amory gives good, light, lively accounts of the American rich, but as Clio rightly points out, "as far as the modern world is concerned it is complete nonsense." The point is, there is no "modern' aristocratic education, not even at Le Rosey --Wetman 03:23, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
How to get out of a limo without flashing your knickers. Debrett's is the accepted modern standard for such things. Natgoo 11:13, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, I got my list from the back of a Georgette Heyer book. You mean that stuff isn't current anymore? ;-) I guess I'll have to move on to The Singing Von Trapp Family. BTW Clio, how was Buenos Aires? Tell me on my talkpage. Anchoress 11:17, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Maths, English, science, history, geography, probably French, etc., just like anyone else. The things that make aristocrats appear aristocratic are acquired naturally through being brought up in aristocratic families, not through "lessons". Proteus (Talk) 11:36, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

What about the more practical aspects, e.g. keeping the peasants/serfs/slaves from revolting, creative taxation 101, the fine art of stabbing your peers and/or betters in the back while avoiding same, and the ever-popular pillaging? Clarityfiend 19:07, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
You forgot Droit de seigneur. Ah, the pleasures of the noble life! Clio the Muse 19:44, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Clio is too good a historian to be taken in by propaganda of the French Revolutionaries. --Wetman 03:23, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Interestingly, our article (now linked in Clio's answer) skips from ancient to medieval sources. It omits Talmudic references from Late Antiquity, that strongly imply the practice was well-known in Babylonian culture of the time, e.g. in Tractate Kiddushin, the Talmud gives helpful advice as to how to circumvent it. --Dweller 16:08, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
The moral boundaries of what can be included in a family act. 15:55, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

How much do you trust Jimbo Wales?[edit]

My concern is that if Jimbo Wales is the big Wikipedia cheese, what's to stop him doing unpleasant things with Wikipedia that I might not like? Theoretically, if he wanted, could he start charging for access to Wikipedia? What other terrible schemes could he potentially be planning? What about the other members of the board - could they vote him out and take over? Whatever will we do?! --Seans Potato Business 04:39, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

No he couldn't, because if he did something to annoy too many people somebody would take the content, as they are legally entitled to do under Wikipedia copyright, set up a server somewhere else, and people would continue on their merry way. Next question.--Robert Merkel 04:50, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps you could read Wikipedia, Criticisms of Wikipedia, Jimbo Wales, or take a look at meta:Wikimedia Foundation and the Wikimedia Foundation bylaws for information on those questions. As for bit about voting him out, it looks like Jimbo's a permanent member of the board; but the other members can outvote him. -- SCZenz 04:55, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Assume good faith until you have some reason not to. Vranak
My reason to question is the whole thing where he may have allegedly tried to stomp out any attribution of credit to Larry for co-founding Wikipedia, and that he started that Wikicities business. What if he sells Wikipedia to Microsoft? Everyone has their price... I wonder how many complete and up-to-date backups of Wikipedia exist outside the influence of almighty Jimbo... --Seans Potato Business 06:39, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Well I ask would the Wikipedia exist if it had not been for Jimbo? Other than that one problem that remains unsolved is how to devorce it from the old IRC/BBS based user groups (dialup someone's BBS server and link to other computers, download programs, exchange info or chat) which do not respect any rules but their own and even then only when it suits their fancy. 03:17, 29 January 2007 (UTC)


Are there any major cities named after Carthage? 06:24, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

There are many places names after [Carthage]]. I can not, however, decide whether any of them are major for you. Take a look at Carthage (disambiguation). Picaroon 06:47, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Carthage, Missouri is not exactly a major city, but it is an important one in southwest Missouri at least, and an American Civil War battle took place there and is named for it, the Battle of Carthage (1861). Pfly 06:59, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
...don't overlook more than one Cartagena. --Wetman 08:17, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Slightly tangential, but related nevertheless: If you're looking for cities named after Carthagenian icons, the most "major" one I can think of is Barcelona, with numerous offshoots on several continents, including a French town with the charming name of Barcelonnette. They are all named after the mighty Carthagenian Barcid family. Wikipedia also lists three distinct Hannibals in the United States, the most famous one being Hannibal, Missouri. ---Sluzzelin 21:31, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Blackfoot Indian Feather Paint symbolic meaning[edit]

What are the meanings of different colors painted on feathers in the Blackfoot Indian culture?WhispersLove 17:11, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Edgar Allen Poe[edit]

What was his life story? How did he die? How successful were his writings during his lifetime?

Hmmm ... have you taken a look at Edgar Allan Poe? As a side note, a lot of people frown on using the reference desk as a way to avoid doing homework. dr.ef.tymac 17:53, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Name of tall pointed hat with attached veil[edit]

Canonical depictions of medieval European princesses nearly always include a tall, conical hat with an attached veil; see for example Google Image search for "princess hat". What is the name of this type of headgear? When was it worn, and by whom? -- Dominus 17:39, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

There's a short article on hennin with several external links. ---Sluzzelin 18:29, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
You might be interested in looking at the hennin gallery at Commons. Many of the old portraits show truncated and other varieties, as opposed to the pointy version, which has become an iconic design, often used in fairy tale illustrations since the 19th century, and very popular in cartoons too. ---Sluzzelin 19:00, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Thank you very much! -- Dominus 20:02, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
I've taken the liberty of making "princess hat" a redirect, as it seems to be a common colloquial name.--Pharos 20:58, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Glen Baxter was apparently convinced that it was a wimple, and used it under that name in many cartoons. Now it certainly appears he was wrong. --ColinFine 00:27, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Pinochet + Wikipedia[edit]

On the Spanish site of Pinochet, it say he was a Chilean military man, politician and dictator. On the English site it says he was a general and president of Chile. Same man, sounds different, though he was all. Therefore 2 questions to this please: 1) Does the primarily English-speaking community online (British, Americans, Australians, Canadians, etc.) view Pinochet with more pragmatic and tender eyes? 2) How far may Wikipedia, as a whole, claim objective truth and why is the latter so elusive (ie: which area of philosophy covers this? Thanks, --AlexSuricata 18:48, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia does not claim that articles represent the truth, much less T<small-cap>HE</small-cap> T<small-cap>RUTH</small-cap>TM. Rather, it claims, verifiability. If what you are saying about the articles is true, it is problematic, as there is a significant body of writing that portrays him as a repressive dictator and the article should report that other people criticize him without endorsing . And, of course, all relevant facts about his rule should be included. The main point is that WP does not like or dislike Pinochet, we simply report the relevant facts about him that have been reported in reliable sources. JChap2007 20:07, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
We also try to avoid loaded words like "dictator". User:Zoe|(talk) 00:47, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
And it depends on who is editing the article and, in case of conflicting views, which compromises they have achieved. I just read three articles on English Wikipedia presenting Pinochet as a factual dictator (as opposed to a formal dictator). The media have always presented him like this. The New York Times announced his death with the words Augusto Pinochet, Dictator Who Ruled by Terror in Chile, Dies at 91. Associated Press's title seems to have been Former Chilean dictator Pinochet dies. On Pinochet's current talk page alone, you will find several discussions on using the word dictator. The talk page also links to seven archived talk pages documenting former discussions. You will probably find old versions of the Pinochet article presenting him as a dictator. If you had read the article then, you wouldn't be asking this question here. It's also possible that you will find the word dictator in the article sometime in the future again. ---Sluzzelin 12:47, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
As for your second question: In my mind, Wikipedia will never be able to claim objective truth as a whole, especially not when dealing with political history, nor should it pretend it ever can. The article on truth lists several philosophical approaches in dealing with truth. ---Sluzzelin 20:50, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Weird statement I read about Turkey[edit]


without trying to offend anyone, I would like to hear an explanation for this : A while ago, I read a quote from someone saying "Anatolia can join the European Union as soon as the Turkish occupier withdraws behind the Caucasus" I know it sounds pretty harsh, but why would someone say this? And why exactly behind the Caucasus? Is there some historic reference I am missing?Evilbu 22:44, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Why that person is referring to the Caucasus is beyond me. What I do know is that the Turkic peoples originate from Central Asia. According to the history section of that article, "Turkic soldiers in the army of the Abbasid caliphs emerged as the de facto rulers of most of the Muslim Middle East (apart from Syria and Egypt), particularly after the 10th century. The Oghuz and other tribes captured and dominated various countries under the leadership of the Seljuk dynasty, and eventually captured the territories of the Abbasid dynasty and the Byzantine Empire." The most important conquest in this capture was the fall of Constantinople in May 1453. It marked the end of the Byzantine Empire, and created what would later become the Ottoman Empire. It is widely believed that the Republic of Turkey is the successor state to the Ottoman Empire. See also Ottoman_Empire#Origins.
What this person is probably saying, is that the Turkic population of Turkey and the Republic of Turkey are in his/her view immigrants who have occupied and are still occupying the lands of the people who lived there when the Turkic peoples migrated westwards from Central Asia. The native population should in his/her view be eligible for the European Union. AecisBrievenbus 22:56, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
'Behind the Caucasus' would seem to be an extreme way of saying that the Turkish people should return to their point of origin, somewhere to the north-east. The Seljuk Turks began to move from the area of Armenia into Anatolia in the eleventh century, a migration hastened by the victory of Alp Arslan over the Byzantine Emperor, Romanos IV Diogenes at the Battle of Manzikert in 1071. For centuries the Turkish people have been the dominant ethnic group in the area. Most of the remaining Greek minority left in a population exchange agreed by the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923, following the Turkish War of Independence. I imagine this observation must have been made by an extreme Greek nationalist (or neo-Byzantine!). But try to envisage the chaos caused in the world if we all returned to where our ancestors lived a thousand years ago! Clio the Muse 00:31, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
It would mean that I would have to move about ten miles northwards ;) AecisBrievenbus 00:52, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
I'm impressed both by the tenacity and the attachment of your antecedents, Aecis. I, in contrast, would have to divide myself in two: one part to northern Germany, the other to Scandinavia! Clio the Muse 01:08, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Okay thanks, so there used to be a time when the Turkish did not exist within the boundaries of today's Turkey? The observation was not made by a Greek but just by someone opposing Turkey becoming member of the EU.Evilbu 19:57, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Yes, what was to become modern Turkey only began to take shape in the period after Manzikert, and was not fully complete until the fall of Constantinople in May 1453 and Trebizond in August 1461. There may be many good reasons for opposing Turkish membership of the EU; but the observation in question is most assuredly not one of them. Clio the Muse
I think that the statement in question is probably an example of racism, since the person who made it was not objecting to the Turkish state or any of its policies but to the Turks as a people. Marco polo 00:10, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
One other questions (I never got this) when the Ottoman empire fell apart, they lost Arab territory like modern Syria and Lebanon... but why exactly did they still have a part of Kurdestan? How did and do they explain their claim? Was language a criterion or not? Evilbu 00:46, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Evilbu, you should look over the page on the Turkish War of Independence. At the end of the First World War the Ottoman Empire, unlike the other Central Powers, was in distinct danger of being divided up like a colony. Turkey may not have survived at all but for the efforts of Kemal Pasha, who fought successive campaigns against hostile forces, including the Kurds. Turkish authority in northern Kurdistan was established by military force, not by appeals to language or nationality. As late as 1927 the Kurds tried, with the support of the British, to establish an independent state, the so-called Republic of Ararat; but this revolt was finally suppressed by Ankara in 1931, as was a further rising in 1937-8. Clio the Muse 01:25, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
So you're saying Kemal Pasha had his "whey" with the Kurds? Clarityfiend 17:57, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Groan! Clio the Muse 19:02, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

January 28[edit]

A favor to ask[edit]

A project I started awhile back (as an anon IP), which I've been working on ever since (as Go for it!, and now under my current nym), is the Glossary of philosophical isms. I'm very excited about it, because thanks to the occasional contributor, its completion is within view. I was wondering, if you wouldn't mind helping complete it. It doesn't have to be done all at once; adding one definition per Wikipedia session, or so, would be a great help and would speed things up immensely.

The help needed is to fill in missing definitions. The method I've been using is to follow the link of each term, and cut and paste its definition from the lead section of its article. I then edit it down (or even rewrite it) to be less wordy and easier to follow, and I make a judgment as to the size of the entry based on the understanding it presents. For major and difficult terms, I try to keep them down to six lines. Others down to 3 or 4.

The glossary is getting pretty close to completion. If a handful of people completed one definition per day each, it would be done very soon. Please take a look, to see if this is something you could help out with: Glossary of philosophical isms.

Sincerely, User talk:The Transhumanist 05:53, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Hi, The Transhumanist! not all isms are really philosophicalisms, but your idea is nice! -- DLL .. T 18:49, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Legal tender...?[edit]

On a dollar bill it says: "THIS NOTE IS LEGAL TENDER FOR ALL DEBTS PUBLIC AND PRIVATE" yet some retail stores want supra-requirement or something more than legal tender in order for you to shop in their store or to transfer ownership. For example, suppose a politician owns the only food stores in town and has found a way to keep you out of his stores if you do not vote for him to be mayor or a thief who demands you leave your purse or wallet unsecured except by store personnel at the register before entering the store. Is there a law that regulates this kind of supra-requirement or can retailers get away with demanding things other than legal tender to shop in their store? 13:04, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Can you give a real-life example of this? Most stores are private property, so the owner can impose all sorts of restrictions if they want to, but it's hardly ever in their interest to discourage customers. Even if they have a local monopoly, someone else would soon cash in on the opportunity to compete with them. Transfer of ownership (of the store?) is a different matter. Some form of security would normally be required in such a major transaction. --Shantavira 13:51, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
...or to transfer ownership of any merchandice to a prospective customer in exchange for legal tender. Real life example... humm... Big Lots. Although happy to buy up surplus, discontinued and mechandice from failed stores and sell it off to anyone looking for a bargin without heavy investment in security personel or systems but rather by baring patrons based simply on the possession of a backpack, etc., i.e., no one with a backpack can enter the store without turning it over to the store at the register. Loss of sales is not an issue since they are only concerned abot the amount that anyone carrying a backpack is likely to spend and how many costomers with backpacks they have (relatively few). Ladies with large purses and shopping bags are excluded from their logic that anyone with a backpack can fill it full and head out the door without paying (they can site examples of kids with bookbags who have done this). I have other examples but its time for church. 15:20, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
I'm not a lawyer, but it seems to me that the legal tender issue has nothing to do with your example. As a prospective customer, you haven't incurred any debt yet. If you did, then and only then the seller couldn't refuse to accept the dollar bill as payment. Clarityfiend 16:24, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Similar to what Clarityfiend has already said, your reference to "legal tender" is not really relevant to the facts as you present them, since negotiable instruments do not entitle you the right to enter private property, nor do they entitle you the right to force someone to initiate a contractual negotiation with you (which is what retailers do when they offer goods for a price). There may be other legal duties or obligations between you and the retailer, but perhaps the best advice would be for you to ask to speak to a manager and respectfully state your concerns to him/her if you feel you or your friends are not being treated fairly at the store. (see also, Wikipedia:Legal_disclaimer, Negotiable instrument, contract ). dr.ef.tymac 16:52, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
There seems to be a misconception out there that "legal tender" means stores have to accept it for purchases. What legal tender really means is that if you already owe a debt to someone, and you offer the person legal tender to pay off the debt, they have to take it. So Target doesn't have to accept a $100 bill at the cash register. But if I owe Target $100 for some reason, and I offer to pay it back with a $100 bill (or with 10,000 pennies), they have to take it. -- Mwalcoff 17:33, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
It depends upon the precondition. Once a seller has agreed to sell you something, especially on credit, you become indebted to pay the seller for said item as a short term debt. This is nullified only if the seller says you must pay first before taking possession of said item. Correct me if I'm wrong. 18:21, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
I believe there is a law that says there are limits to how many of each denomination of coin they have to accept, so the 10,000 pennies are out. Clarityfiend 19:04, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

The point is that the store does not ask as a precondition for entering the store if you have legal tender but rather something else. 17:11, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

I think there is more to this question than has been asked here. This user posted a question a few weeks back about carrying a concealed weapon in his backpack, and whether a store could make him give it up if the manager demanded he leave his backpack up front. Unfortunately, as has been stated above, you do not have any right to carry a backpack onto private property, nor does U.S. currency promise you such. GreatManTheory 23:25, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
That's interesting. Why would you reference a previous question, especially one several weeks old? Is that what you are doing on this board instead of providing honest and truthful answers to questions which may arise during the course of another user's research? If you are going to track questions users ask to draw some kind of profile then perhaps there is more to you than this board knows. BTW profiling on the basis of aother user's intellectual curiosity and then drawing false conclusions on the basis of that profile is in my opinion worse than Racial profiling. Perhaps one of us should find another board. 02:17, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Why did I reference a previous question? Frankly, because your question did not make much sense, and I was struggling to understand it. In my eyes, I was attempting to provide an "honest and truthful answer." I've no desire to argue with you, so let's leave it at that. GreatManTheory 12:20, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Hopefully then my clarification below will help you figure it out. 13:12, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

As has already been stated, walking around a store does not involve having a debt, yet. A better question would be does a store have the legal right to not accept anything higher than a twenty dollar bill. There are examples of this all around us. Zeno333 06:42, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

This functional constraint falls within the situation I'm trying to clarify especially in the case of food in a situation where food is only available through payment of legal tender to a store keeper. The overall question is what rights in our society does the monetary system in a situation that basis acquisition of food on payment of money give every individual? Can yu be denied food even though you have the "where-with-all" to pay for it for some arbitrary reason like you have a gun tattooed on your forehead or does your ability to pay for the food entitle you to its acquisition in light of no legal alternative to acquire food and in light of the fact that a store must obtain a license to sell. 13:10, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
I know that a person can't be barred from a store simply because of his skin color. I'm not sure about other characteristics, such as tattoos, but I do believe the store owner can exert some sort of control, such as requiring patrons to leave backpacks at the front of the store. Someone more knowledgeable than I will have to fill in the gaps. GreatManTheory 17:20, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
As has been made clear, although this desk cannot offer legal advice, nobody is forced to accept your money if you haven't bought anything yet. If you're already in debt to them, apparently (if I've understood the other answers correctly) they would have to accept it. However, a shopkeeper has the right to deny you service in their own shop, with the exception (as I understand it) of a few reasons, such as on racial grounds. Skittle 17:23, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Unfortunately some stores have found ways to hide racial grounds by applying rules that encompass other "undesirable" patrons, etc., i.e. transients or bums off the street. However, I would not shop at a store where by requiring I leave my backpack at the register the implication suggested my real motive for entering the store was to steal rather than to purchase, especially when I had spent my money to purchase merchandise from the store on numerous other occasions. I might feel differently if the store applied the same rule to lady’s hand bags and offered locker space similar to the locker space provided in bus stations. However, rather than trust a store under the implication that the store did not trust me I would simply reciprocate the lack of trust and the implication and spend my dollars elsewhere. In the case of food (the store being the only available source) I would complain to the police that my possessions would be unsatisfactorily guarded while I shopped for food and give the police a list of my possessions before turning them over to the store. 18:15, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
This is all well and good, but I'm not sure how "legal tender" is in anyway related to what you have just stated. Possessing money does not (as others have pointed out) entitle you to enter the store if you fail to comply with the requests of the owner, provided they are within the bounds of the law. Obviously, if you feel the requirement is unreasonable, you are perfectly entitled to spend your money elsewhere, but I'm not entirely sure why you feel that your possession of legal tender makes the request of the owner inherently invalid (or illegal). Carom 18:24, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
You must have missed the part about a store asking if you have legal tender before allowing you the enter the store versus asking if you are of African descent. 19:31, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, I saw it, but I don't follow the argument - while businesses in the United States are forbidden by law from denying service to anyone on the basis of race or ethnicity, there is no law requiring them to serve you (or even allow you on the premises) simply because you are in possession of legal tender. I don't really see the parallel you seem to be trying to draw...Carom 19:44, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Rather than "...simply because you are in possession of legal tender..." try because you are not in possession of it. Wouldn't it make a lot more sense if a store denied you entrance on the basis of your not possessing legal tender than on the basis of your great grandmother being a slave? 21:37, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Neither of those criteria make any sense. I do not believe it would behoove business owners to insist that all customers have the means to pay for services on their person at the time of entry, and it certainly is not any more sensible then denying service to customers of a particular race or ethnicity. Carom 21:51, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
They don't make sense when you intentionally skew them. Showing that you have the means to pay is a far cry from actualy paying at the door although whenever I rent a car I'm required to make a deposit up front and to show that I have the ability to pay for it should I total the car as well as to sign an agreement to do so. (Pay for the car, not total it.) 23:49, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Indeed, although as far as I am aware, you are not required to present evidence of your ability to pay in cash, which would seem to be the thrust of your "legal tender" argument. At any rate, as I already said, I do not see the sense in requiring customers to present evidence of their ability to pay for services as a condition of entry to a business that does not otherwise charge any kind of entry fee. Although I completely agree that conditions of entry based on race and ethnicity are entirely nonsensical, I don't believe your proposition makes any more sense. Carom 00:30, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
I'm not making a proposition or an argument but rather a comparison. You enter a store with the intent to make a purchase. Your entry is barred unless you hand over your possessions. Frankly a hold on a credit card would in some instances be preferable, even a cash deposit perhaps. Requiring customers to hand over backpacks to enter a store on the assumption all people with backpacks are shoplifters is in my opinion discriminatory against backpackers since many do not steal. Stores with good security, i.e., cameras have no problem with it. Stores that do not even keep their bathrooms clean much less have cameras or employees with more than a second grade education consider possession of a backpack to be an act of attempted theft in and of itself and its possessor seeking entry for no other reason than to steal. Such stores can enjoy your money, not mine. 02:06, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Of course, it is not only "...stores that do not even keep their bathrooms clean much less have cameras or employees with more than a second grade education..." that require one to check ones backpack. This is also a common request in stores that display large numbers of fragile items, particularly those which carry glassware or pottery. And, as I'm sure you are aware, many museums - especially art museums - require one to check ones bags upon entry (at particularly prestigious insitutions, the bags may be x-rayed or hand searched instead, but this is not the case everywhere).
At any rate, if your question is "Would you prefer to make a cash deposit on entering a store rather than check your bag?" then my answer is no, I would not. If that is not your question, I must confess I do not know what it is. If you do not, in fact, have a question, then I don't believe that there is anything more to discuss here on the Reference Desk. Carom 02:22, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Situations where items are irreplaceable represent a different story. I’m referring to any retail shopping cart scenario. Nonetheless my question remains: are there laws which regulate such confiscation, i.e., a receipt be given, liability should your possessions be damaged or stolen or dangerous such as a lawfully possessed lethal weapon while handed over to the care of someone else, i.e., should they be informed of the contents of your container, etc. My questions is what laws regulate such matters in regard to such temporary confiscation? 02:43, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Umph. I think this will largely depend on where you live - concealed carry laws vary from state to state, and your obligation to inform store employees that you have a legal firearm in your backpack is probably equally variant. You can probably find the laws for the state where you live online. That said, most stores probably disclaim all liability for any loss or damage incurred by a customer while their bags are checked; I don't know if this disclaimer has any real "weight" in a court of law - if, for example, your bag were stolen, and you brought suit. I'm sure there's a lawyer around here somewhere who can provide a better answer. Carom 02:56, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Perhaps this is why bus stations offer lockers as mentioned above so as to reduce risk and to defer liability to building insurance, business insurance or to the insurance carrier for the lockers. In any case I think it is reasonable that a proprietor be required by law to accept liability for any possession he confiscates especially, if not only, in a situation where the shopper has no other immediate alternative to purchase food including alternatives for which he possesses insufficient legal tender. 09:01, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Without any laws to regulate liability of confiscation this area of the law remains lawless. 19:27, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Shia vs. Sunni[edit]

What are the differences between Shia and Sunni believers in Islam ? Why the intolerence and potential civil war in Iraq between these groups?

Basically its the who is rightful heir and who is not thing associated with the different line of decendency no different than with Jewish and Muslim decendency. 15:26, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
I think animosity between the two groups might likely be related to power struggles, rather than strict religious issues, as well... See Shia Islam and Sunni Islam. 惑乱 分からん 16:08, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
There is indeed a long standing rivalry between Shia and Sunni Muslims, deeply imbedded in the history of Islam. But it is important to understand that the present civil war in Iraq (and, yes, it is a civil war) has, in large measure, been determined by the specific historical and political conditions which led to the creation of the country in the first place. Modern Iraq did not emerge as a nation in any organic sense, but was carved in a quite arbitrary fashion by the British and French out of the ruins of the Ottoman Empire. No attempt was made to take into account the politics, traditions and religion of the different ethnic groups in what had been Mesopotamia. Rather Kurds, Shia and Sunni were all welded together in the British mandate of Iraq. When the Kurds and Shias rose in revolt, the British began to rely more heavily on the political support of the traditional Sunni tribal elites. At the Cairo Conference and the subsequent Anglo-Iraq Treaty of 1922 Britain agreed to the establishment of an indigenous Iraqi army, with an officer corps and senior command made up almost exclusively of Sunnis. And thus it continued to independence and beyond. History is a tree that often bears the most bitter fruit. Clio the Muse 20:40, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
It is worth adding that Sunni dominance in present-day Iraq dates back at least to the time of the Ottoman Empire, when the officially Sunni Ottoman government favored the Sunni minority and placed Sunnis in positions of power. So the dominance of the Sunni minority went back centuries. Part of the traditional Sunni identity involves a feeling of entitlement to power. This helps to explain the vehemence of the Sunni resistance to Shia control, but, to be fair, the present Shia government has not given Sunnis much reason to hope for security or their fair share of power. Marco polo 00:04, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Read Abu Bakr, that's how it began, the dispute concerning who is Mohammed's successor. But I once read that it's comparable with the difference between catholics and protestants :catholics (like shia muslims) follow their religious leaders (ayatollah in shia's case) and protestants tend to follow their bible a lot more. Is this correct?Evilbu 00:43, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Such parallels, though superficially attractive, cannot be strictly applied. It is true, though, that Shia clergy have tended to enjoy much greater political and spiritual authority within their communities than their Sunni counterparts. Clio the Muse 01:07, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

In a nutshell, forgive the innaccuracies, the Shia, Sunni divide comes from the time following the death of Mohammed. Mohammed had children who vied for political power with the generals who fought alongside Mohammed. The generals picked off the children of Mohammed (assassination). Finaly, a grandson of Mohammed, believed to be the last, was killed. Sunni take the view that the death ended Mohammed's line. Shia take the view an angel intervened, and swapped the grandson with another, until such a time as the grandson, or a descendant, shall return to lead. There are those who believe the European royal houses are decended from Mohammed.DDB 08:12, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

state of nevada[edit]

how did nevada get it,s name and it's nickname?

Nevada means "snowy" in Spanish. GhostPirate 16:56, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
  1. The Battle-born State — commemorates the fact that Nevada was admitted to the Union during the Civil War.
  2. The Mining State and The Silver State — in recognition of its important silver mines.
  3. The Sage State, The Sagebrush State, and The Sagehen State — due to the prevalence of wild sage (Artemisia tridentata) and sagehens.
Shankle, George Earlie (1955). American Nicknames: Their Origin and Significance. pp. p. 313. eric 18:13, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
The Sierra Nevada (Snowy Range) was named by seventeenth and eighteenth century Spanish sailors who could see the California mountain ranges while at sea. When the new territory was split from Utah the proposed name was Sierra Nevada, but this was shortened to simply Nevada in 1859. Shearer, Barbara S. (1994). State Names, Seals, Flags, and Symbols: A Historical Guide. pp. p. 11.  Unknown parameter |coauthors= ignored (|author= suggested) (help)eric 18:25, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
The Sierra Nevada article gives a different origin for the Range's name.—eric 18:40, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
Having lived in the area, I can confirm that the Sierra Nevada is not visible from the Pacific Ocean, even on the clearest of days, because the peaks of the Pacific Coast Ranges lie between the ocean and the Sierra Nevada and block the view. It makes sense that Anza would have seen the Sierra Nevada for the first time in 1776, because his route took him over the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains (one of the Coast Ranges), from which the Sierra Nevada is visible on very clear days. Clear days were of course more frequent in the days before air pollution. Marco polo 23:59, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
I've been looking around for something which could resolve the discrepancy, Pedro Font's diary is available online[13] (tho the search function for the site seems to be broken). Also there's the expedition map[14] labeling the present day range and parts of the transverse ranges as Sierra Nevada. Maybe at the time this was just a name for all the ranges of the region?—eric 02:53, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
The entry for December 27, 1775 looks to be the friar's first mention of Sierra Nevada.—eric 03:38, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
And on April 4, 1776 he saw the range we're interested in:

Looking northeast we saw an immense plain without any trees, through which the water extends for a long distance, having in it several little islands of lowland. And finally, on the other side of the immense plain, and at a distance of about forty leagues, we saw a great Sierra Nevada whose trend appeared to me to be from south-southeast to north-northwest.

eric 03:47, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Farquhar, Francis P. (March 1925). "Exploration of the Sierra Nevada". California Historical Society Quarterly.  gives us an answer:

In 1542 Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, while off the peninsula of San Francisco on November 18, beheld the Santa Cruz Mountains covered with snow and named them Sierras Nevadas. On a map of 1564 by Ortelius the name Sierra Nevada appears near the coast but farther north, due to an error in description. As more specific names came to be applied to the coast mountains, it is not surprising to find this common general name moving farther and farther into the interior to designate in a vague way some less familiar range...there were one or two expeditions that led towards a knowledge of the Sierra Nevada, and on one of these the name became affixed to the range where it now rests...Notwithstanding Garcés and the Font map, the name Sierra Nevada continued to wander, As late as 1841 Commander Charles Wilkes, U. S. N., called the inner part of the Coast Range east of San Juan, the Sierra; while the mountains beyond the great interior valley were known as the Californian Range. Just when the name Sierra Nevada finally became fixed would be hard to say.

eric 17:00, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

France was Germany[edit]

As so often happens to me on wikipedia Ill start with some random topic, in this case Trotsky, and end up with something completely different, The Fall of France. Anyways, Im reading about the Fall of France (Battle of France) in WW2. It says that Germany occupied France from 1940 till 1944. So, could one state, that from 1940-1944 France was Germany? I mean thats a long time to be occupied. If one were to look back in the history books say 100 years from now, and look up the the history of french territory from like the Battle of Hastings to the present would they conclude that there was NO France from 1940-1944? Its kind of intersting to think about... 17:33, 28 January 2007 (UTC)moe.ron

Your paradox is simply a trivial semantic one, based on which definitions of "country" and "exist" you use. France in nearly every sense of both words continued to exist during those years, divided into occupied France and Vichy France. A country doesn't cease to exist because a foreign power occupies part of it for a few years. alteripse 17:38, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
First of all, that's actually not that long. For instance, some sconsider the fifty years that the Baltic States were part of the Soviet Union as an occupation! Secondly : there was definitely "a France" as there was Vichy France. Evilbu 19:54, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

The first point to consider is that diplomacy and politics continue even in the midst of war and occupation. France continued to be a legal, national and international entity during the period of German occupation. With the possible exception of the provinces of Alsace and part of Lorraine, it remained technically independent, and was most assuredly not part of Germany. Second, it should also be noted that while the armistice of June 1940 divided France into occupied and unoccupied zones, the whole nevertheless remained under the overall control of the government established at Vichy. Even after the occupation of all of metropolitan France in November 1942 Vichy remained, in a technical sense at least, the legitimate source of authority. Following the liberation of 1944 the Vichy authorities were taken to Germany, where they formed a government in exile. As far as the general issue of occupation is concerned, very few of the conquered territories in Europe were actually incorporated into Grossdeutschland as such. And questioner, as you mentioned the Battle of Hastings in passing, it might help to clarify the position even further if I point out that even after this seminal event England did not become Normandy. Clio the Muse 20:55, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Blue is the area annexed by Germany.
Green is free zone ("Vichy France").
Red is occupied France. − Twas Now ( talkcontribse-mail ) 09:56, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
I think the situation in France can be compared to the situation in the Netherlands. "Local" politicians ran the government, but they were under the auspices of Third Reich representatives. France and the Netherlands were basically run by Germany, but they have never been annexed, unlike for instance Austria. AecisBrievenbus 01:28, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Right -- Germany never annexed France, except for Alsace and Lorraine, even after Germany broke the armistice and occupied the whole country. So France was no more a part of Germany than Iraq was a part of the U.S. after the U.S.-led occupation of that country began. (I hate to use that analogy considering the completely different circumstances behind the two occupations, but it's the best one I can think of at the moment.) It is worth noting that Germany annexed parts of Poland and Czechoslovakia during the war as well, and the remainder of Poland and the Czech lands were part of the "Greater Reich" under separate administrations answerable to Berlin. -- Mwalcoff 03:25, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
The analogy with Poland doesn't entirely hold up, because Poland did cease to exist as a country not once but (from memory) 3 times throughout its history. It was carved up and became a part or parts of other countries. JackofOz 03:45, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Poland was partitioned in part in 1772 and 1793, but only disappeared altogether on the final partition in 1795. It made a brief reappearance as the Grand Duchy of Warsaw under Napoleon, and then Congess Poland under Tsar Alexander I. The country was partitioned once again in 1939 between Germany and the Soviet Union. Much of the German part was formally annexed, though what was left, the General government, was not part of the Greater German Reich, but separately administered. Clio the Muse 09:16, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Maria Saavedra Pinhal[edit]

i lived in england for 4 years. i hade a morgage with my ex-husband and he had a drug problems so he stop paying the mortage i left him about 1 year ago and i come back to portugal i would like to now if i have any problems with law because i was married at the time. regards

Maria Pinhal

<all personal information removed>

We don't offer legal advice here. --Wirbelwindヴィルヴェルヴィント (talk) 18:03, 28 January 2007 (UTC)
We can't help much but still can tell that in any organised country you shall have problems if, as may be inferred, you signed and oughta pay and did not. But the problem may still be with the banker and not yet with law, so try to discuss with him first. -- DLL .. T 18:16, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Justice system of gold rush mining towns.[edit]

Does anyone have information on this? No article. DebateKid 19:55, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

This website has some information:[15].It's about the justice system in the mining town of Cariboo,but I'm sure many of the steps taken to enforce the law there would have been taken in other mining towns as well.Apparently James Douglas (Governor) initiated a mining licence system.He then hired policemen.There were also several courts established:the Gold Commissioner's Court,who ruled in cases regarding the gold mines;the civil court,who ruled in cases regarding disputes not connected with the gold mines;the bankruptcy court,for businesses who had to close because they weren't making enough money to stay open;and the police court,which ruled in more serious matters such as murder.Serenaacw 22:38, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

In the US, early mines were often small-scale impromptu constructions built by a few miners, and the law, if any, was likely to have been provided by vigilantes or Federal marshalls. Later on, mines were controlled by large companies, which effectively controlled the law in the area and hired local "detectives", such as Pinkerton, to enforce this control. StuRat 07:31, 16 December 2006 (UTC)
Is that based on a history book or on Deadwood (TV series)? Edison 22:47, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Pinkerton National Detective Agency Is not based on the TV show, the TV show is based on the real Pinkerton. If you read that article, Deadwood is actually not too far fetched a depiction of what life is thought to have been like back then. Vespine 01:41, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
It's going to depend on what country the mining town was in, how isolated it was from the local authorities, and when the town was founded. The justice system of turn-of-the-century Dawson City, Yukon was very different than that of post-war Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. --Charlene 04:58, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

This issue is interesting from an Australian perspective, as Australia is still growing thanks to the Gold Rush started in 1855. Legal issues found definition at the Eureka Stockade. I have Chinese ancestry because a great great grandfather sailed to Australia in 1855, worked the gold fields for twenty years, returned to China leaving family behind and was executed. Australian goldfields had expanded rapidly. Prospectors had to purchase a claim, and then were legally entitled to pan or dig. Licenses got expensive. Industries rose in support of mine workers, diversifying wealth and opportunity, so that Melbourne was once rated the world's richest city (federation, 1901). DDB 08:01, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

massage therapy[edit]

i have a report to write well an essay to write on a massage i got at school and wondering something one of the questions is how can a massage work the muscles and nerve endings and how does it releave your pain the only thing i have for that answer is by the diffrent strokes and pressure used but i cant write an essay on just that can someone help me

Muscle and Ligament may help you or give you links. Massage therapy discusses the general subject, with a list of particular types. --Wetman 19:52, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Concept of freedom & Equality in an era of globalisation[edit]

As this doesn't really seem to be a reference desk question, I have moved this to your talk page. It can be found here, and if people want to discuss this topic with you they can do it there. Thank you. Skittle 20:52, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

WHAT IS EQUITY in terms of law?[edit]

hi all, who can help me with this? reference to articles etc would help a great deal.

Thanks Rich

Welcome to Wikipedia. You can easily look up this topic yourself. Please see equity. For future questions, try using the search box at the top left of the screen. It's much quicker, and you will probably find a clearer answer. If you still don't understand, add a further question below by clicking the "edit" button to the right of your question title. --Shantavira 20:57, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

That's true, the wiki article on equity should be your first resort. However, even after reading it, the concept can still be a rather difficult one to grasp. Therefore, if after reading the article you still have difficulty with the concept, feel free to ask follow-up questions here. Loomis 00:44, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Hi, sorry I should have made it clear the first time round. I did read the article on equity but its still not clear. need more elaboration. Can anyone help please? THanks RIch

Accounting and Law[edit]

Accounting is a professional that provide a series of standard recording method business transaction. Law is a guidelines or rules and redulation that mandate the standard of accounting profession. In fact, accounting and law both related to each other. Heman being may not or less concern of the standard mandate of Accounting if thw law did not impose certain act to comply. Somehow, in this turbulent or rapid growth globe business environment. Accounting and law no longer defined as just profession, but soem argue it as businesses. Does accounting and law nowaday prone to businesses and abandon the profession. Thus, are accounting and law profession or law? And what the differences?

Being intimately acquainted with both the legal and the accounting professions (though I'm professionally trained as a lawyer, I'm not nearly as thoroughly trained in accounting), somewhere in there is a very interesting question. Unfortunately, for the life of me I can't figure out what it it is. Try to rephrase it, or break it into understandable pieces, as it would be my pleasure to answer it as best I can. Loomis 02:35, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

If you are asking whether law and accounting are genteel professions or big-business, I would definitely say big business. The U.S. Supreme Court acknowledged this when it upheld legal advertising. It is very hard to understand what you are asking.75Janice 05:08, 29 January 2007 (UTC)75Janice 29 January 2007

I'd generally agree with Janice with regards to most lawyers, yet qualify her statement by ponting out the obvious fact that not all lawyers are equally "un-genteel". I've been through law school, and believe me, it's a total dog-eat-dog atmosphere. From an academic standpoint, I find the study of law to be fascinating, which is why I went into it. But you can't blame lawyers for the nastiness associated with the legal profession. Our western legal systems are by their very nature based on adversarialism. Though popular culture has tended to greatly overemphasize the litigious aspect of the legal profession, when in fact it plays a relatively minor part, the adversarialism is still there. The workday of the average lawyer is comprised far less with the dramatic intrigue of the courtroom, and far more with the drafting of contracts, contractual negotiations and other business related legal matters. Still, the adversarial nature of it is inescapable. It's unfortunate, but we're trained to think with a "zero sum game" mindset. We're trained to fight, be it in the courtroom, or, far more often at the negotiating table, or even at our desks when drawing up contracts, even when cooperation may be more productive for all parties involved. Needless to say, though the law may be a fascinating academic pursuit, I have no interest, nor do I think I ever will, in practicing.
On the other hand I've also been to business school, and currently work in the business world, where the exact opposite is true. Business and law are two separate universes. It's not all about "watching your back and sticking it to the other guy". It's about making money, and having fun in the process. Unlike in law school, the governing mindset in business school and the business world is the "positive sum game" mindset. You wanna make money? Me too! And so does our supplier, and so do our clients! Let's put all of our heads together, have some fun, and let's all make some money! We need some people to work for us? Fine! Give them good pay and treat them with respect and believe me, they'll actually enjoy their jobs, be more productive per dollar and everybody'll be better off. Whereas lawyers are adversarialists (especially amongst each other!) In the world of business the key word is "cooperation". Forget all they say about the greedy, ruthless, capitalist pig, who makes a profit only by exploiting the "working man"; the more miserable the working conditions, the more the profit. Dickens is dead, and so is the miserable Victorian "Industrialist". I'm not saying these people don't exist, we've all had bosses who were miserable pricks. All I'm saying is that in today's business world, these narrow-minded throwbacks to the 19th century just don't get that they'd be far more successful in business, counterintuitively to them of course, if they'd actually modernize their approach. Move from the "zero-sum-game" mentality of the industrial revolution to the "positive-sum-game" mentality of the most successful of businesspeople today.
As for accounting, though I may be rather well versed in the fundamentals of the field, I have little to no first hand experience with regard to the actual profession, and so I'm almost completely unqualified to give any assessment of it. All I feel qualified to say about accountants is that as a group, they have got to be by far the most exciting, sexiest, most sharply dressed, and most entertainingly witty group of absolute party animals I've ever had the pleasure of coming across. :--) Loomis 23:54, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Just to add that I've worked for quite a few lawyers, only one of whom spent any significant amount of time in court. Many lawyers do things like transact house sales (and a real estate lawyer may only rarely see the inside of a courtroom unless he specializes in real estate litigation), draft legislation, look after the rights of abused children, mediate disagreements, teach, supervise registries, assist judges, or write contracts. The majority of lawyers are not litigators. I always thought it was strange that (at least 20 years ago) if you went to a lawyer in Canada asking for help with a divorce, the lawyer always had to suggest counselling to the client in the very first letter, unless one of the parties had been charged by police with physically abusing the other or the grounds of the divorce as set out in the petition was physical cruelty. (I'm guessing this has changed with the new Divorce Act.) --Charlene 04:53, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
That's the thing about divorce. Nowadays we take it for granted that if a married couple want to divorce, they simply file papers and sooner or later they're divorced. Used to be, though, that one needed "grounds" for divorce, such as adultery, some form of cruelty, or some other "reason" for having the law consider the divorce "warranted". Loomis 14:04, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
I was talking more in a legal sense than not. In Canada you still have to specify grounds for divorce in the petition, but the only grounds allowed are adultery, physical abuse, or not having cohabited consensually for one full year. Obviously the third is the most commonly used since it covers everything from incompatibility to mental cruelty to whatever else you want to throw into the mix. Most victims of abuse and adultery also use the third ground (at least as an alternate) because it's easier to prove. --Charlene 09:07, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

January 29[edit]

Location of de Chirico's "Delights of the Poet"[edit]

I'm trying to find the current location (probably a museum) of de Chirico's painting "Delights of the Poet." Thanks for your help :)

This says it was sold by moma in 1991 and this (assuming I haven't mangled the translation and it is the same picture) says it is in a private collection as at 2002. meltBanana 14:52, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Volunteering Abroad[edit]

Does anyone know the percentage of teens that volunteer abroad? Does anyone know places to go if you are interested in volunteering abroad as a teen?


In order to give you an answer to the first question, we would need you to define where "abroad" is to you. Are you in the U.S., the UK, somewhere in Europe, etc.? Dismas|(talk) 05:28, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
If he's a volunteer, possibly to developing countries? 惑乱 分からん 11:03, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Exactly my point. We don't know. Just saying that they'd like to go abroad is rather... uh... broad! If we knew the country of origin then it would make it easier to find charities based out of that country. The one thing that pops to the top of my brain would be to try the Peace Corps. They have a wide range of opportunties but without more specific questions, it's hard to answer specifically.Dismas|(talk) 11:24, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps this will help: Category:Peace organizations? Dismas|(talk) 14:14, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
An awful lot of charities in Category:Charities based in the United Kingdom are not peace organisations, but send volunteers overseas. (Merlin (charity) is typical - it's apolitical in its disaster relief efforts.) It's hardly going out on a limb to guess that same is true of charities in other countries. --Dweller 15:39, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

I'm from the United States.

Where would you like to go, then? Europe? South America? Asia? Africa? What would you like yo do? 惑乱 分からん 17:38, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
And are you eighteen? Many US organizations won't take anyone under 18 as a volunteer because a minor can't legally sign a contract. There may also be problems of custody, supervision, etc. that make it legally difficult for an organization to accept minors as volunteers. --Charlene 04:43, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Lances and the Uhlan[edit]

Our article on Uhlan states:

The lance carried by the uhlans (and after 1889 the entire German cavalry branch) consisted of a ten foot and five inch long tube made of rolled steel-plate, weighing three pound and nine ounces.

I'm having a hard time believing that a 10' lance made of steel could weigh just under four lbs. and still be used as anything but a pointer during powerpoint presentations. Does anyone know of any references for this? I didn't see anything in the article. Dismas|(talk) 04:28, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

It's plausible. For an approximation, forget the two ends and take the lance to be a simple cylinder rolled from steel plate 2 mm thick. 3 lb 9 oz is 1.62 kg. The specific gravity of iron is 7.86 and any steel should be pretty similar, so the volume of steel would be 1.62/7.86 = 0.206 liter = 206 cm³. Now 10'5" is 317.5 cm, so the average cross-sectional area of the steel would be 317.5/206 = 1.54 cm². At a thickness of 2 mm = 0.2 cm, that corresponds to 1.54/0.2 = 7.7 cm for the other dimension of the plate before it's rolled, or in other words, the circumference of the lance. So the diameter would be 7.7/pi + 0.2 = 2.65 cm or just over one inch. (The +0.2 is because I was in effect calculating the circumference halfway through the layer of steel, so you add a half layer at each side -- it's only an approximation, obviously, but a good enough one for this purpose.) That seems a reasonable diameter for a lance, and 2 mm thick steel is enough for it to have considerable strength. A fatter lance with thinner steel would also be possible, of course, or vice versa. As to the actual lances, I have no idea. --Anonymous, January 29, 05:49, minor correcting 10:47 (UTC).
American Civil War-era wooden lances are described as "a nine foot long wooden lance, tipped with an 11-inch steel blade. Each weighed about eight pounds". I'm sure there will be printed references which will contain the exact number, but the Uhlan article does indeed seem plausible. Angus McLellan (Talk) 15:51, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks to both of you. I didn't have access to all the weights and such for steel plate. 2mm thick doesn't sound very formidable but once you roll it, I would think that it strengthens it enough. 'preciate it! Dismas|(talk) 17:45, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Leonardo da Vinci article[edit]

I believe that someone has hacked the Leonardo da Vinci article. Please check on it. Judith

Perhaps it has been fixed since you last looked; I could not find anything wrong in a quick review. If you are aware of a specific error, please either fix it yourself or let us know what the error is so that we can fix it. Thanks. Marco polo 15:26, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
As a side note (I noticed that I say this a lot), the articles are public accessible, so you can't really "hack" an article. The proper term would be vandalized. BTW, if you notice vandalization in the future, you can revert it yourself. --Wirbelwindヴィルヴェルヴィント (talk) 22:46, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Abbreviations in titles[edit]

I've been asking around on IRC and I checked all over Wikipedia and the online dictionaries, but I can't find the answer to my questions:

Example: S.E. M. Rexhep Meidani of Albania [16]

  • What does S.E. mean?
  • What does M. mean?

Example: S.A.S. le Prince Albert du Monaco

  • What is S.A.S?

Thank you--Ed ¿Cómo estás?Reviews? 03:40, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

This'll give you a start: 400 possibilities for SAS.  freshofftheufoΓΛĿЌ  03:45, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
S.E. is Su Excelencia (Spanish), Son Excellence (French), or Sua Excelência (Portuguese), M. Monsieur, and S.A.S. Son Altesse Serenissime (see: Sovereign Prince of Monaco#Titles and styles).—eric 04:07, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
If you're interested, the English translation of "SAS" is HSH, or His Serene Highness. Believe it or not, back in the 19th century, princes who had the style HSH were considered "lower" than those styled HRH, and many heads of houses (especially German ones) where the HRH style was used wouldn't allow their children to marry a partner styled HSH. If they did, the head of house often ruled that the marriage would be a morganatic marriage. Queen Victoria was considered extremely radical for not giving a damn whether her sons-in-law or daughters-in-law were HRHs, HSHs, or even (shock!) commoners. Then again, Victoria was one of the least Victorian persons around. Edited. --Charlene 04:38, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much! If you were curious why I asked, I'm currently creating a Millennium Summit delegation article.--Ed ¿Cómo estás?Reviews? 03:09, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

I have another question about this as well:

His Eminence Angelo Cardinal Sodano, Prime Minister (Holy See)

  • Does "His Eminence" only apply to Cardinals?
    • Yes. JackofOz 04:31, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
  • Would the Vatican necessarily have a "Prime Minister"?--Ed ¿Cómo estás?Reviews? 04:26, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
  • The style "His Eminence" is sometimes also used by Muslims to refer to the head of a Christian faith. For instance, the Archbishop of Canterbury was once called "His Eminence" in Egypt. --Charlene 09:13, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Atheist clergy[edit]

Does anyone know of any individual or heard of a case of a clergy person affiliated with a definite Christian church being atheist? 04:49, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Before I answer, can I ask you what you mean by "definite Christian church"? Many American evangelicals, for instance, do not believe that the Roman Catholic church (or that any church that is not American Protestant) is Christian, which can affect the answer I'd give you. --Charlene 05:11, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Oh, we can safely say they are all atheists in respect to the vast majority of human gods. And we can also safely say a lot of them don't personally believe in a god but are on the clergy anyway. I can't cite names, but it just seems very likely since that's how it happens with people everywhere else in the world. — Kieff | Talk 05:23, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Who are the human gods? Edison 06:02, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Gods worshipped by humans throughout human history, of course. — Kieff | Talk 06:36, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Larry, Curly and Moe of course. What do they teach you in school nowadays?! Clarityfiend 06:53, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
The only three gods that I worship are Huey, Dewey and Louie ;) AecisBrievenbus 14:10, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

I heard, about ten years ago, of an English bishop in the Anglican Church who felt that humanism was an accurate depiction of theology. While he didn't claim to believe in God as a miracle providor, he believed in God that informed the human race as to a code of behavior. I can't imagine a member of clergy being more antagonistic to the primacy of God in the life of an individual. I remember seeing a tv current affairs interview. I recall other non clergy describing how it was difficult for such ministers to 'admit' they don't really believe in god, as they haven't any other 'skills' for employment.

My experience is that clergy have a sound theology and believe in God as creator, essential for all to place as the centre of their concerns. DDB 07:09, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

I am reminded of the priest in Miguel de Unamuno's San Manuel Bueno, mártir. It's fiction, of course; but I imagine there are many such who see faith as the last defence against the abyss, no matter the state of their own personal belief. Otherwise-Viva la muerte! Oh, yes; I have a feeling that the cleric mention above may be David Edward Jenkins, Bishop of Durham from 1984 to 1994. Clio the Muse 08:46, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes, a lot depends on one's definitions. See also John A.T. Robinson.--Shantavira 11:09, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Jean Meslier (1664 - 1733) was a Catholic priest and the first European (to my knowledge) to write a long essay on why Gods are purely fantasy and religion mainly detrimental to humanity. He wrote it as a Testament letter to be publish after his death. If God is incomprehensible to man, it would seem rational never to think of Him at all. Keria 12:44, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

This Danish minister declared he did not believe in God. JChap2007 13:16, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Then why does he remain in the Danish church? Flamarande 16:56, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Likely because many people see churches as more than an apparatus for the worship of a god. They may see them as social or political structures - moral watchdogs or arbiters. --Charlene 09:59, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Write, broadcaster and "radical theologian" Don Cupitt was ordained as a deacon in the Church of England, but describes himself as Christian Non-realist, which apparently means that he attempts to live by ethical standards traditionally associated with Christianity, without believing in the actual existence of the underlying metaphysical entities (such as "Christ" and "God"). Gandalf61 15:06, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
That simply makes no sense to me. I mean if you join a Christian church you are joining a organization who is officially dedicated to a religios Dogma (worship of "God" and taking care of his flock). It seems to be a strange place for someone who realizes that he doesn't believe any longer in God (whatever). It's like joining the Communist party and then proclaiming that Capitalism is the only way to go and then not leaving the party. Or joining the army and then refusing to fight and not asking for a discharge. How can he remain being a priest, someone who is suppossed to explain others the basics of faith? How is he suppossed to reassure or help a troubled member of his congregation? I guess the guy is simply scared to lose his safe job. If he likes being a moral watchdog, doesn't belive in God and still remains in the church then he is simply a hipocrit, but then I guess we all are to a variable degree. Flamarande 17:05, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
What is that about joining the Communist Party and saying that Capitalism is the only way to go? Could this be China? As far as your other points are concerned, Flamarande, I urge you to read the Unamuno story I identified above. I think it might be of some interest to you. Clio the Muse 21:58, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Monotheistic Religion Elements[edit]

1. Countries of Origin - Judaism, Christianity, Islam
2. Historical figures and events - Judaism, Christianity, Islam
3. Central Beliefs - Judaism, Christianity, Islam
4. Nature of God - Judaism, Christianity, Islam
5. Texts - Judaism, Christianity, Islam
6. Rituals and Practices - Judaism, Christianity, Islam
7. Ethics and Morality - Judaism, Christianity, Islam 13:40, 30 January 2007 (UTC)Jeffery

It might just be me, but I have a feeling you might get some of the answers by looking at our articles on Judaism, Christianity and Islam. --Richardrj talk email 13:42, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
It might just be me, but this sounds like a homework question. 惑乱 分からん 16:09, 30 January 2007 (UTC)


can u explain me the role of social status and money in a marraige??

Our article on marriage has a lot of information about this, in particular the section on Marriage and economics. AecisBrievenbus 14:04, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
It is important to point out that this varies widely among different cultures. Marco polo 16:33, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

are there any other better articles in context to todays life??

That is the only article in the encyclopedia. The problem is that there are many different kinds of life today. Today's life in a small town in the southern United States is very different from today's life in San Francisco, California, and even more different from today's life in other countries. No article could possibly cover marriage customs in every social setting on earth today. Marco polo 19:56, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Okay. I've deduced from your IP address that you are probably in India. Marriage customs in India are certainly different from those in many Western countries. Most editors working on the Reference Desk are from Western countries, so their ideas about the role of social status and money in a marriage are likely to be different from the ideas of many Indians. I do not have a lot of expertise in this area, but my sense is that many Indians seek marriage partners of similar or higher social status and wealth. Parents want to know that their children and grandchildren will enjoy a status and standard of living at least as high as their own. In many parts of India, families may also want young people to marry another person of the same caste, though I believe that in recent years more families have been open to marriage across caste lines. When I was in India, I was interested to see a "Matrimonial" section in the classified sections of newspapers in which people advertised for marriage partners. (Marriage advertisements are very unusual in the West.) Most of the advertisers mentioned their education, income, and caste. Apparently these matters are important in India to people considering marriage. If there are any Indians among the Reference Desk editors, perhaps you can provide a better answer. Marco polo 20:10, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
It's a valid point you make - but who wants to marry someone who lives in a slum? - the caste system makes the social status issue more apparent (I'm not getting involved in caste system = bad arguments - I don't know enough), but it's a fallacy to believe that 'in the west' social standing, family, and relative income don't affect the situation as much. To a lesser or greater extent issues such as wealth, family values and connections, manners etc always matter - and I'd guess that most people marry people who are at a similar level to themselves - though we can all fantasise about a rich man/woman or unbridled love with someone of lower standing - more often than not though such things are more common in romantic novels and films than real life.
So to answer the original question - I'd suggest that getting a good or complementary match between the social status, wealth etc of the two partners is important. Being rich doesn't make it easier to get married - but it does make it easier to marry a rich person... Is that reasonable? 23:32, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

thank you marco!!!

In response to, I would agree that even in the West, a majority of people marry someone of a similar status. But, at least where I live (Boston USA), it is not so unusual for marriages to involve a significant difference in status between the families of the two parties. Usually these are not vast differences; it would be rare for a rich person to marry someone from a slum. But it is not so unusual for the boss from a upper middle class family who attended a prestigious university to marry his secretary from a blue collar (working class) family who never finished university, or for an educated professional woman to marry a carpenter who never attended university. Marco polo 15:39, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Michael Goldman; poet[edit]

i am aware of two books by Michael Goldman, First Poems and At the Edge, published in 1965 and 1969, respectively. i can find no other information on this poet and would be gratefull for any bit i could add. specifically: birthdate? is he alive? where did he live? what other works has he published, if any?

gld-- 21:15, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Princeton University lists him as Professor Emeritus, seems to be more well know for his dramatic criticism than his two volumes of poetry. Try a WorldCat author search to find some more works.—eric 21:41, 30 January 2007 (UTC)


Where will i find a list of all phedal references that have to do with communism and socialism

Where will i find a list of references that have to do with communism and socialism this: is no home work quesion, i am just wanting to see how advaced you "system" is

The obvious place to look is Communism and Socialism. Are you looking for specific texts, or would you just like to know what the chief differences are between the two? Clio the Muse 23:18, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
I'm intrigued about the word "phedal", a new one to me. Google suggests it's to do with physical education, but that doesn't seem very relevant to the question. JackofOz 02:40, 1 February 2007 (UTC)
Even if it's a typo, it's hard to interpret which word it was meant to be... 惑乱 分からん 02:55, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Politics of NYC's Chinatown[edit]

What is the political situation of NYC's Chinatown? I was readin a book from 1977 that basically stated that Chinese Benevelont Association basically ruled as a semi-feudal olgarchic governemnt and that it had stong ties to the KMT regime in Taiwan while a smaller radical group was loyal to the CPC in China. I was wondering how much the political situation has changed in Chinatown since 1977. I would think that both the proCCP and proKMT would have shrunk in strength since the KMT is now outta power in Taiwan and the CPC is considered a traitor to Maoism. The I Wor Kuen was the main pro-Mainland party back in the 1970s, are there any politcal groups in Chinatown today loyal to the Mainland? From what I could find do the beenevlont assocaiton still seems to be the main government. Anyway any information regarding the poltical association of Chinatown NYC are elcome and I would also appreciated general info about the politics of other Chinatowns in the USA, Sanfranciso Flushing etc. --Mao1949 22:21, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Check out our Chinatown, Manhattan article, which provides a few hints on this. You might also want to look at this page on the website of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association. These two sources offer only hints of the current politics. Another useful source might be The New Chinatown by Peter Kwong, published by Hill and Wang, 1996. Marco polo 23:21, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
I can't say much about the politics, but I can say two things: (1) there are more mainlanders nowadays and (2) the Flushing community is now larger than the one in lower Manhattan (and is home to John Liu, the first Asian-American on the New York City Council).--Pharos 08:39, 2 February 2007 (UTC)


Does jesus have any fundimental relationship to allah, or the Muslim god?

Please read the articles on Jesus and Allah: they should inform your question. Of course, as Allah is the Arabic word for 'God', Arabic-speaking Christians call Jesus ibn-Ullah for 'Son of God'. — Gareth Hughes 22:22, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Islamic view of Abraham and Abrahamic religions may also be of use. AecisBrievenbus 22:24, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Also see Allaha Chaldean 23:55, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
And Islamic view of Jesus. Emmett5 05:07, 31 January 2007 (UTC)


Pre-law majors[edit]

What are some good pre-law majors for an undergraduate? --Croc 01:01, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Depends on what area of law you are interested in practicing. Corporate attorneys might benefit from a business/finance education, those that practice environmental law may want a background in ecology or environmental science. The list goes on. Ask someone who is practicing law in the areas you are interested in, they will know what kind of background you need. 01:55, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
If you don't know what area you want to practice in, it's no problem either. Most law schools make a point to say there is no preferred major. Any course of study that develops strong writing and critical thinking skills is recommended. Common majors include Political Science, English, History, etc. GreatManTheory 02:03, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
A good friend of mine is in law school right now. His Bachelor's degree is in philosophy and he had a minor in theology. I think I remember him saying that the theology was just because he was interested in it but the philosophy would help with the law degree in critical thinking and such. Dismas|(talk) 02:44, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
The best law schools will be most impressed, not by your acquiring background information relevant to the practice of law, but by your achievements in a rigorous program that demands critical thinking and expressing yourself carefully in writing. So philosophy is an excellent suggestion. I hear that the top law schools are as impressed as heck with Classics majors who have learned to read books in Latin and Greek, which is the most fun thing you could learn in college anyway. You can gain the requisite skills in many other disciplines; philosophy and Classics stand out because they're only chosen by students with a strong commitment to diving into the subtleties of language and thinking. Wareh 15:10, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Pre-law is a good prelaw major. Some lawyers are in patent law and have engineering degrees or degrees in the sciences.

Some work in representing athletes and were athletes themselves. Some do taxes and business and an accounting, investing, economics and business background is useful. Strong reading and composition skills are useful. Some lawyers (unlike TV and movies far from all, probably a minority) go to court and argue litigation cases or criminal cases. Speech classes, acting, forensics (in the debate team sense) would be useful to courtroom lawyers. Psychology, abnormal psychology, and criminal psychology would be useful to prosecutors or defenders. Child development and child psychology would be useful in family law. Biology, microbiology, biochemistry would be useful if you want to be an expert in DNA defenses like Barry Scheck. A Latin course would be of some small use since Latin phrases are used, but many lawyers never took it and get along fine. A keyboarding class would make life far easier than a lifetime of slow, inaccurate hunt and peck typing or the antequated custom of writing in longhand or dictating to a stenographer and waiting for a draft to be typed. Knowledge of wordprocessing (quite a few lawyers like Wordperfect for some reason), spreadsheets, database programs, and visual presentation programs is useful. Being multilingual doesn't hurt because of foreign investments and international business deals. Edison 18:26, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

For goodness sake, if you are applying to a U.S. law school no particular major is required or desired. My classmates at one of the top American law schools majored in history, economics, philosophy, music, drama, religion, art, dance, science. A few were medical doctors. Law is incredibly broad. Have fun. Wherever your interest and passion is, law can accomodate it. I was told to do what I am telling you but I wasn't sure. The only possible exception is the patent bar which requires a science background. Many lawyers become interested in a field and go for further training. Law is as exciting as you choose to make it. 75Janice 00:06, 2 February 2007 (UTC)75Janice 1 February 2007

Socrates and Camus The Stanger on Trial Analysis[edit]

I read an interesting research paper on pdf which I first read on the internet in about April of 2006. It compared the trial of Socrates in Plato's work to the trial of Meursault in the Stranger by Camus. Basically it said that the trials were really judgments on society/ Ive searched the internet trying to found this paper and have been unable to. Im very interested in analysis of The Stranger so would be interested in seeing other papers you may know of as well.--Stalin1942 02:43, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

I believe Nietzache referred to Socrates' trial as a 'well-disguised suicide'. As for L'entranger, Meursault seems pretty indifferent to the proceedings. They're comparable but not equivalent situations. Vranak

Might this have been an argument developed from Dr. F. Wilson's monograph, Socrates, Lucretius, Camus-Two Philiosophical Traditions on Death? It was published by Mellen Press in 2001. If not, I would be pleased to know the specific paper you have in mind if you ever manage to track it down. I cannot imagine two more dissimilar processes that the (real) trial of Socrates and the (fictitious) trial of Meursault. Clio the Muse 09:37, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

found it here [PDF] “Meursault as Gadfly: The Stranger as Camus’s Apology” by Peter A ...File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML “Meursault as Gadfly: The Stranger as Camus’s Apology”. Much has been made of the Mediterranean or Greek influences in the writings of Albert ... - Supplemental Result - Similar pages

Status of the Chinese Napoleonic Code[edit]

I read a while back in the People's Daily that New China was working on creating a Civil Code. Anyone know the status so far? --Gary123 Apply now, exciting opportunities available at Continental Op Detective Agency! 02:53, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Scheduled for completion in 2010. Most of the world has civil law (in contrast to the English common law tradition, Islamic law, or customary law, although common law could be viewed as a form of customary law). Napoleonic usually refers either to the French civil code, or to the actual original French civil code published by Napoleon in 1804. It's use to refer to China is a bit odd. --Diderot 19:24, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
I'm confused by your reply Diderot. "Napoleonic usually refers either to the French civil code, or to the actual original French civil code published by Napoleon in 1804." Those two are one and the same. I don't understand the distinction you're making.
Also, I find it rather innacurate to say that "most of the world has Civil Law" as opposed to Common Law. The English Common Law tradition is followed in the England (but not all of the UK), the US, Canada, India, Israel, Australia, New Zealand and a great many other smaller countries. A very rough estimate of the combined population of these countries would be at least 1.5 billion. Therefore, with the world population being about 6 billion, at least a quarter of the world follows the English Common Law tradition. And of course all of the above mentioned countries are democracies, i.e., countries where the law actually has relevance. It's true that countries in continental Europe, Japan, Latin America and now apparently China are opting for the Civil Law. Yet China being a dictatorship, despite its massive population, I really don't see the relevance in any country "adopting" the Civil Law, if despite it all, as in China, the "rule of law" is but a farce. In other words, I'd say that the Common Law tradition is no quaint, peculiar, "customary law" as you seem to have characterized it. Rather, to be fair, the Common Law tradition is at least as relevant today, if not moreso, than the Civil Law tradition.
As a personal aside, I've studied both traditions, and I hope it doesn't sound like I'm taking sides here. Each of the two western legal traditions have their strengths and weaknesses. To be honest, as a lawyer, the Civil Law is so much more rational, logical, and simple to understand than the Commen Law. On the other hand, compared to the Common Law it's just plain dull. The Common Law, on the other hand, is a complete mess of writs and inconsistent precedent and is a hell of a lot more difficult to grasp. However, compared to the Civil Law, the Common Law far more interesting to study. It's filled with peculiar little stories about how this or that rule developed, and is by far the more colourful of the two. I can only recall with nostalgia the sheer joy of reading the judgments of one of the most notorious of Common Law judges: Lord Denning of the English Court of Appeals. Loomis 22:44, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Human-powered vehicle...?[edit]

Is there any historical record of anyone using a Human-powered vehicle to travel West (or East) on the Oregon Trail or across the continent on any East/West route before the turn of the century (1900) during the great migrations to the west? 06:41, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Like the Mormon handcart pioneers? Rmhermen 05:13, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Actually I was thinking more of a human-powered-self-transport vehicle although it would be interesting to know if there is any record of a Rickshaw ever being used. 06:41, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
I haven't read of 19th century bicycles being able to carry a person, the recommended 300 pounds of food, not counting clothing, weapons, cooking equipment, shelter and tools needed for a trip of over 2000 miles which often lacked anything we would recognize today as even a dirt road. A wagon drawn by oxen or mules was the standard. Of course today's mountain bikes might be able to carry a person and the lesser amount of food needed for a faster journey, but the early bicycles such as the Penny farthing seem better suited to modern roads and lacked the multiple gears needed for cross country travel. After about 1870 there was the railroad to the west coast, and some enterprising person by 1900 might have found a good enough road and bicycle, coupled with places where one could buy a meal or lodging for the night and tires and inner tubes, to pedal from Missouri to the Pacific. The trick is finding their historical account of having done so in a reliable source. See [17] for a modern Oregon Trail bicycle expedition. The participants can expect "a fully supported camping tour with luggage transport, meals, mechanics, support staff and just plain wonderful people." Their hypothetical 19th century counterparts would have had to be content with far lesser expectations. The 2004 tour went 2300 miles in 37 days, or 62 miles per day. Per [18] the 350,000 people who migrated west before 1870 might have gone 10 or 20 miles a day. The wagon only carried the supplies and tools, and the people genrally walked to spare the oxen. Edison 18:46, 31 January 2007 (UTC)


Italic text Hello....I was just going through some of my family history and came across pictures that have the background of some sort of flowers, swords, armor, and flags. It also says "The Ancient Arms of Gallardo." Can you please help understand as to what The Ancient Arms Of mean back in the day. thank you very much.

I really need some more information on background and context here. Are you sure about the name? Gallardo means nothing to me, other than the name of a car, or the Spanish word for smart or brave. Also, the coat of arms you have described (is it a coat of arms?) sounds highly standardised, something of a cliché in heraldic terms. Is there a motto or any specific design on the flags? Clio the Muse 10:00, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
The car is named after a famous breed of fighting bull and is pronounced roughly "guy-ar-do". Gallardo is also Spanish for the word gallant. [Mαc Δαvιs] X (How's my driving?) ❖ 18:23, 31 January 2007 (UTC)



How did (the) Spanish influence the Moroccan city of Casablanca? Is there a significant Spanish-speaking population in Morocco?

Thanks, Vikramkr 04:51, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Not, I would have thought, in Casablanca, Vikramkr, despite its Spanish name. Any residual foreign influence here is French. Small Spanish-speaking communities are to be found in the north of Morocco, an area which was under the political control of Spain for over forty years. For further information on this you should consult the page on Spanish Morocco. There was also a Spanish colony at Ifni, south of Agadir, though I cannot say with any certainty if Spanish is still spoken there to any degree. Clio the Muse 09:08, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Spain still has possessions on the Moroccan coast, at Ceuta and Melilla. Corvus cornix 18:38, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Thanks! That article was helpful :) Vikramkr 01:25, 1 February 2007 (UTC)
Actually, they're more than possessions, they are integral parts of Spain. Spain does not lie entirely in Europe; these 2 parts are in Africa. JackofOz 02:37, 1 February 2007 (UTC)


I could not find any information about the religion of Matrixism in Wikipedia. I searched for it only to find its article's stub protected.

There's some stuff about it in my classes textbook but where can I find more information on Matrixism? 07:28, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Assuming you don't mean Marxism, which has some parallels with religion (but Karl Marx would probably be horrified that) I found this FAQ website ([19]) that deals with a religion made popular by The Matrix and its sequel films. The site's main page claims that the religion stems from 1911. Written by adherents, rather than editors following a WP:NPOV policy, read it critically. --Dweller 10:42, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Visiting Matrixism, it seems that people have created articles on this subject on many occasions and they have been deleted. The page is now protected to prevent recreation without discussion and consensus. If you wished to create such an article, you would need to demonstrate that this religion is notable. --Dweller 11:05, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
I don't know whether Marx believed in synchronicity, but only yesterday I created a stub for the other Karl Marx. He had even less to do with Matrixism than the first Karl Marx. JackofOz 02:34, 1 February 2007 (UTC)
You seem to have discussed this at the Matrix talk page where you mentioned where to find the information yourself. ---Sluzzelin 08:16, 1 February 2007 (UTC)


Eminem is religious or atheist?--Vess 15:29, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

How are we suppossed to know that? Try this link [20]. Amongst the info there is a reference about his 1st wedding: "Their wedding ceremony was officiated by Reverend Sharon O. Spiegel." Therefore you can assume that the guy at least pretends to care a bit about his Christian religion. Flamarande 22:02, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Eminem is a brand, not an individual. The marketing concept that is Eminem is areligious. The person behind the brand has his own conscience, of which I'm unaware DDB 08:52, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Marshall Mathers? 惑乱 分からん 15:19, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

What language did Muhammad speak?[edit]

I have been trying to find this everywhere on the web but can't; what language did Muhammad speak when he spoke the messages that would later be written down in the Qur'an? I know during his time period both Arabic and Syriac existed and were used. But then Syriac died off soon after he passed.

My guess would be Muhammad was the reason Arabic survived and Syriac died out? 惑乱 分からん 16:57, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Arabic, but there are still some speakers of Syriac. I vaguely remember of a Sura of the Quoran that says that the only suitable language of Islam is Arabic. Try this article Qur'an translations. A critic might say that it was a evident case of "religious/cultural/linguistic Imperialism" and a believer might defend that it was done to prevent the unavoidable mistakes that appear in all translation (the bible seems to have some of them). Flamarande 17:17, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Arabic, but a fringe theorist (Christoph Luxenberg) has suggested an underlying Syriac origin of the Quranic text to explain difficult passages. Needless to say, his hypothesis is wiely rejected by both Muslim and non-Muslim Quranic scholars. — Gareth Hughes 17:52, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
There is little question that Muhammad spoke the form of Arabic then current in Mecca and the western Arabian peninsula. He grew up in Mecca, and there is fairly clear grounds to think that what was spoken then and there was recognizably Arabic. However, Muhammed was a child of moderate affluence living in a major trading centre, and the uncle who raised him was a trader who moved about with the young Muhammed a great deal. So, assuming the canonical accounts of Muhammed's early life are broadly accurate, it is highly probable that he grew up with exposure to a number of regional languages and likely had at least a functional knowledge of regional tongues like Syriac.
Muslims generally believe that the Quran consists of what God told Muhammed to write down, and that it was written down accurately in the original language. So they take it as given that when Muhammed spoke what was recorded in the Quran, it was in Arabic.
If you define the Syriac language as the classical liturgical language of Aramaic Christians, then yes, Syriac has been dead for a long time. But then, by that standard, so has Quranic Arabic. The various Neo-Aramaic languages have the same general relation to the classical liturgical tongue that modern variants of Arabic have to the language of the Quran. --Diderot 19:15, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Possibility of Chinese-american Internment Camps[edit]

Is there a possibilty of Chinese-Americans being put in internment camps during a Sino-American War? Could the governemtn require Chinese to relocate for security reasons? --Valjean1815 18:12, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

It is possible (anything is possible, and there is statutory precedent) but extremely unlikely in the current political climate. Race issues in the USA are quite different than there were in 1945, which is pre-Civil Rights Movement and all of that which followed. Witness the difficulties over the "macaca" gaffe, a word which most Americans didn't even know about much less know was potentially a racial epithet. The idea that the government would be able to easily turn around and incarcerate people of a given race or nationality seems unlikely to me — the atmosphere would be extremely ugly if it did and there would be ample room for dissent and challenge. I also think that in many parts of the country (California and New York) the degree of integration of Chinese Americans with society is far higher than it ever was with Japanese in the 1940s. On the West Coast every college kid has spent years with hundreds of Chinese Americans, I find it very hard to believe they would easily allow them to be dehumanized in the manner required to intern them on the basis of race/nationality. -- 20:07, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
They didn't intern them during the Korean war, so why would they do so now? I also highly doubt the US would war China considering how economically powerful the latter will eventually become. --The Dark Side 20:14, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
The United States Congress has delegated authority under Article I, § 8, clause 11[21] of the United States Constitution to the president to provide for the restriction, internment, or removal of enemy aliens deemed dangerous (50 U.S.C. § 21[22]). Since the repeal of certain portions of the McCarran Internal Security Act and enactment of 18 U.S.C. § 4001(a)[23] the president does not have explicit authority to similarly treat naturalized citizens. Whether or not Congress could delegate such authority ("[the] Japanese internment program has since been widely discredited...but the detention of citizens during war who are deemed dangerous has never expressly been ruled per se unconstitutional." Elsea, Jennifer K. (2003). "Presidential Authority to Detain "Enemy Combatants"". Presidential Studies Quarterly. 33 (3). ) or whether the president has inherent authority to do so in certain circumstances are questions which Wikipedia editors cannot answer with finality.—eric 20:38, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Valjean, it is an old joke about academics that they give two answers to any question; No and Yes. Under current circumstances, in any future reasonably foreseen, there is no way any one race would be interned in the US. However, it is possible to imagine a circumstance that is far fetched. One can score points against their pet hates by imagineing these far fetched circumstances. DDB 08:50, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

If the U.S. and a foreign country were at war, as evidenced by the "quaint" constitutional requirement of the U.S. Congress passing a declaration of war (not done since December 1941), it would be very likely that citizens of the enemy nation would be deported or interned, since it would be treason toward their own country for them to give aid and comfort to the U.S., as by working or teaching, and basic patriotism would seem to require that they do what they could to impede our war effort, by sabotage, by espionage, or by spreading demoralizing disinformation. They would have a moral and perhaps legal obligation, from their own country's laws, to leave the U.S. and enlist in their country's war effort. U.S. citizens were in general not allowed to simply go about their normal affairs if they found themselves in Italy, Japan, or Germany during World War 2, and Axis citizens could no more expect to be left to their own pursuits in the U.S. during the same period. That said, as per Japanese American internment the 30,000 or so persons of Japanese descent in California were moved to relocation camps without regard to their U.S. citizenship, and their property was taken without compensation. The U.S. government eventually in 1988 apologized and paid some compensation to the Japanese internees who were still living. U.S. citizens of German or Italian origin were not interned, although enemy aliens usually were. If there were a declared U.S.- China war, and the countries somehow were not totally depopulated by hydrogen bombs in the first hours and days, it would be absolutely proper to intern Chinese citizens or to deport them to a neutral country. They should of course be treated humanely per international conventions. Edison 18:03, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

how to do a mock sesearch design[edit]

I have an assinment to do a mock research design not sure how to do it csn you help. Pam

First, find some real research designs and look for techniques you could copy for credibility... 惑乱 分からん 19:37, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
I wasn't familiar with the term "mock research design". My first impulse was to suggest sites such as this one, but I see that "mock research design" gets a few google hits (11, to be precise). Exactly what does it mean? An imaginary research project? Emphasis on statistics, sample sizes, power etc., or on studying important problems whose answers matter, or what? --NorwegianBlue talk 19:57, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
My assumption is that this is meant to be a description of a potential research project that you would not actually be doing? In this case an easy approach would be to use the basic "scientific method" headings used in grade schools as a model (problem, hypothesis, observations, analysis, conclusion, or whatever), adjusting the scope of the research to the level implied by the assignment. -- 20:01, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

The first thing you need to do is to come up with a research question. Pick an area that you are interested in, and think about something that would be interesting to analyze in that. For example, you might be interested in the employment of disabled people. You might ask a question like, "What factors influence an employer's decision to employ a person who is disabled?" Obviously a question like this would be covered by existing research already, so you would have to be a little more creative. It is best not to ask something with a yes-no or numerical answer.

Depending on what you are specifically asked to do, you would probably justify why the research question is an important one; where the gap exists in existing research; and the method that you would use to collect data and why. If you need more guidance, perhaps the person setting the assignment or task could clarify things for you. BenC7 07:38, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

See Scientific method where you can learn about hypothesis formulation and experiments. See Design of experiments for an advanced treatment of the subject. Basically, read about something of interest (in Wikipedia, library books, the internet, etc). Form a hypothesis or question to be resolved. Think of the Dependent variables you will observe and the Independent variables you will change between the control group and the experimental group or groups. Avoid confounds which are things not your independent variable, which change along with your independent variable (other than your dependent variable). A parametric experiment is one in which you might have several groups of test subjects or several test tubes of reactants, and you vary the amount of the thing (independent variable) you give to each one. You might have a hypothesis which, per your reading, leads you to make a prediction. Your experimental data can the lead you to confirm or refute the hypothesis. A null hypothesis is that the independent variable will have no effect on the dependent variable. Since it is a mock experiment, you don't have to actually collect all the data. To do statistics, you might have sevral experimental subjects in each group then statistical analysis could be done to see if the results obtained could be attribute to random variations, or if you can reject the null hypothesis at a high degree of certainty, as by saying that the null hypothesis is rejected at the .05 level of probability, meaning that such different results between the groups would be expected due to chance variation in les than 5 % of the replications of the experiment. Feel free to ask further questions. Real science is often done by just trying various things in the lab, and when something interesting is found, devoting lots of experimental time to it, that is, purporting that the experiment was done to test a hypothesis which the experimenter did not actually have in mind when he started the experiment. This has been referred to as the "logic of justification," in distinction to the actual "logic of discovery." B.F. Skinner did not follow this statistical analytic method in his operant conditioning experiments, and engineers, physicists, and chemists may use the more direct approace of doing something and observing the effects, because they are so accurate and replicable. In medical science or social sciences, the high variability of the experimental subjects makes statistical analysis more necessary. Edison 18:27, 1 February 2007 (UTC)