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1  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: How often should a legislature be elected? on: March 03, 2015, 05:24:23 pm
3-4 years seems fine to me.
2  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Red Pillite vs SJW on: March 02, 2015, 05:14:24 pm
I can't imagine a Red Piller would handle a campaign particularly well. In my experience they tend to be fairly aggressive and unlikeable across the board, whereas "SJWs" are a bit more coy with their intellectual dishonesty. That, and there's much more of a spectrum with the latter group; legit Red Pillers are actually an incredibly small group of people. As Cory said, there's just more of a natural base for the latter.
3  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: In general (not just dating), do nice guys finish last? on: March 01, 2015, 01:23:57 pm
4  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Will Hillary Become 'Mommy President' to Millennials? on: March 01, 2015, 10:08:04 am
This is what some millenials most fear... her former positions on issues like video games and pot are going to feed some of the worst nightmares of the castrating mommy/nurse ratchet authority figure. I think she's too old for that though.

Oh I don't know; there's something of a revival with video game fearmongering these days, counter-intuitively, among millennials.
5  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Which left is your favorite? on: February 27, 2015, 08:06:18 am
Old Left, ie those who actually got sh*t done.
6  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: What should the voting age be? on: February 25, 2015, 08:35:16 am
I tend to agree with Mikado, though I am open to being convinced.

The voting age and the age of majority should be the same number. I'm fine with 18 because it corresponds to all the other icons of adulthood.
7  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Republicans to cede on Net Neutrality on: February 25, 2015, 06:51:14 am
The responses to the FCC were over 99% in favor of net neutrality, so I imagine even among non-politician Republicans, it had to be completely overwhelming support.

And it never made sense to make this a political sticking point anyway. There's no real way to reverse this decision in the short term, you would have to completely dig your feet in and bitch about it at virtually every opportunity and among the informed about this issue there's really not much debate about this. Making a fight out of this also risks allowing it to become a youth wedge issue in 2016, which Republicans seem to know better than to try doing. It's a losing issue in a Presidential campaign, basically impossible to overturn, and too complicated to grab the attention of old people for very long.
8  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: MSNBC embarassment: Network pulls in avg of 55,000 viewers on: February 24, 2015, 01:48:59 am
9  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: The last movie you've seen thread 2014 and 2015 on: February 22, 2015, 08:38:24 pm
I watched this movie for some reason. Let's say it has it's ups and downs.
10  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Star Trek on: February 22, 2015, 01:59:59 am
Season 3 maybe I can understand (although, I dunno, there's a real oversaturation of Bajoran storylines in 2 that just seem dumb), but Seasons 5 & 6 of DS9 are the shining seasons of that show IMO.
11  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Guiliani: Obama under Communist influence since age 9 on: February 21, 2015, 11:22:06 pm
I can't believe Saul Alinsky is still a talking point.
12  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Star Trek on: February 21, 2015, 08:18:21 pm
How DS9 disrespects Picard is really the perfect set up for what DS9 turns out to be and is precisely the intent of the episode; Sisko doesn't like Picard, and the lofty values of the Enterprise simply aren't practical in situations where people are stuck dealing with complicated sh**t on a starbase day to day. It's meant to give you a taste of what DS9 as a series shapes up as; it wants to throw the established tone of Star Trek (the lofty idealism and obsession with being by the rulebook) out the window. Over time, DS9 does this incredibly well. (Sisko will also become an incredibly badass leader over the years.)

Even though DS9 starts by disrespecting probably the most popular Trek (sigh) it ends up being the most respectful series of the franchise; due to the structure of DS9's episodes it really dives deeper into a lot of the universe and tells a compelling seasons-long story.

Though if you really are married to the TNG structure I can see how Voyager would immediately strike you as more interesting, since Voyager tried so hard to ape TNG's mojo (so hard, I would argue, that it damages the show's potential super hard) and generally has an episode-to-episode structure just like it.
13  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Clement Attlee or Franklin Roosevelt on: February 20, 2015, 06:29:28 pm
Both were good but Attlee was more of a legit socialist, his motivations were higher-minded, and he appears to have led a more admirable private life.

14  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: February 2015 Presidential and Regional Senate Elections on: February 20, 2015, 06:25:57 pm
President/Vice President

1. Bore/Bacon King
2. Maxwell/Dallasfan65

Midwest Senate

1. TNF
2. Dereich
15  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Is feminism the solution to what MRAs often complain about? on: February 20, 2015, 06:23:13 pm
Goodness gracious, atlas really needs to ban discussions about feminism. I really don't know why I allowed myself to get sucked into these threads.

     Yeah, this thread is also why we can't have nice things. Other than Marokai's posts, everything about this is bad, bad, and more bad.


I'm putting way more of a good-faith effort into these threads than you (and frankly, than most people), dude.

Yes, I do believe that it would be best for Atlas to stop talking about these issues, at least until this place isn't such a sausagefest.  The lack of women's voices in these discussions is a pretty obvious problem.

I want more women on Atlas just as well, but it wouldn't make the identical arguments being made here suddenly infallible.
16  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Atlas Fantasy Elections / Re: Ask Yankee Anything Townhall on: February 20, 2015, 12:21:55 am
If Barack Obama offered you a million dollars to have sex with you, would you do it?
17  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of Cory on: February 20, 2015, 12:05:52 am
Despite my issues with some of his posts I'm going to do something crazy and say I don't think he should kill himself.
18  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Do you listen to a genre of music that's difficult to explain to people? on: February 19, 2015, 10:02:16 pm
Regularly listening to video game music is fairly niche I guess.
19  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Is feminism the solution to what MRAs often complain about? on: February 19, 2015, 06:20:10 pm
Much of the hallmarks of a patriarchal culture - such as men being the chasers, women the guards - manifest itself in rape and sexual assault.

You're right, though should also be noted that the way many people claim we should deal with the problems of sexual assault only seem to reinforce these roles. Though men should obviously ensure consent is present, we should equally be empowering women to take control of the situation and say no if she doesn't want it. Women are not weak damsels in these scenarios, and the social response to rape and sexual assault shouldn't just be "make sure the men get the consent and handle the situation with extreme care" it should also be "make sure the women know they have the power to kick the guy in the balls if he tries anything messed up."

Take for instance situations where both parties are intoxicated; there are many feminists who would argue that drunk sex is always rape because consent is impossible if you're drunk. (And I don't mean black-out drunk, either; in that case I agree with them.) Who is held to account in that situation? It would almost certainly be the man, except using the logic there, he would obviously be just as unable to consent. This reinforces the "men need to be the guardians and handle the situation correctly all by themselves" patriarchal narrative that feminists claim they wish to dismantle. Laws like the aforementioned California consent law seem to have been implemented under the similar auspice of "men need to be responsible for sexual encounters because they're handling them wrong right now." Where are the campaigns to get women to take control and become equal owners of sex? The only way you can think this shouldn't happen is if you assume women are just too scared and weak to do so, so us men need to handle it for them. I strongly disagree with that.

Also Cory, stop being a tool.

Yes, what he said there was dumb and needless.

Lots of good responses to the predictable misogynous BS.

What have I said that's misogynistic?

2. When it comes to the balance we strike for ambiguous situations let us also remember that it is really easy to avoid accidentally raping someone - i.e. make sure you have some fcking consent. It is much harder to avoid being raped by someone. So a bit of chilling effect in this area is legit imo and is what I think Klein is talking about.

But this is very easy to say. Virtually any case that goes to court would have the accused claiming they had consent. What can contradict that? It's not a written contract, it's not done under audio or video recording. Some rapists may even actually genuinely believe they had consent.

The problem with affirmative consent laws is that they can, in theory, be just as easily circumvented the way consent law is right now; a person just lies. This is why Klein argued the value of the law was not in the affirmative consent guidelines, but specifically in terrifying people by making an example out of the occasional innocent. That is a frightening path to open.
20  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Is feminism the solution to what MRAs often complain about? on: February 19, 2015, 02:09:20 am
Feminists pick up studies that say it's anywhere from 1-5% (this number is so low that it strains logic something fierce to believe) and MRAs throw around numbers like ~40% which of course they would because that just benefits the "bitches be crazy" narratives of creepy MRAs.

Really?  I honestly have a hard time believing that it could be as high as 5 percent.  It seems that the reputable studies floating out there seem to float somewhere in the range of 8 percent, but as I pointed out to Nix even they are riddled with false negatives such that the true incidence of false allegations is most certainly lower than that, and more or less perfectly in line with feminist claims.  If outright fabrications (as opposed to legit cases being dropped for personal reasons, or "ambiguous" situations) were even one percent I'd be surprised.

But as mentioned, there's no real way to know the "true" incidence of false accusations. You're a level headed person and I get the argument for why you "believe" one thing or another, but at the end of the day it's just you looking at various studies and applying your own biases to it. I don't believe the number is particularly high, but it's completely arbitrary to say it's vanishingly low. Each camp is merely looking at the studies that concoct their own standards for what "false" and "legit" mean and then picking the one that suits their interests the most. Which is why I moved on from that particular argument anyway, if there's no definitive way of knowing, and the best way to determine truth on an issue is fatally flawed in this case (the courtroom method), and it doesn't really impact the way a judge should look at it at the end of the day anyway, it's just an academic argument none of us, here, are cut out for.

extra-legal sexual assault squads formed by colleges and universities that are ran by young showboaters; the types who will simply dole out punishments before serious investigations have even taken place and maintain them even if the subjects have been cleared

Uh?  Really?  Pretty sure that handling these sorts of cases in-house generally leads to perpetrators getting away with it, on the grounds that the college wants to sweep bad publicity under the rug, rather than it being some sort of hangin' judge kangaroo court scenario?  Kinda was under the impression they had the exact opposite problem?

I don't believe either situation is ideal, never denied the existence of the situations you're referencing, and what I advocate for is more official law enforcement investigation and less extra-legal interference which we almost certainly both agree with in the end, anyway, so I don't know why you're picking this nit.

Dude, do you have any recollection of Steubenville?  Basically the whole town was up in arms that "how could you besmirch the honor of our sainted football players!"  And that's not an isolated incident, that's basically de rigeur in our culture even when they're not on the team.  If you make a rape accusation, be prepared to have people think you're a monster for accusing their friends, who "could never have done it!".  Be prepared for opposing counsel to try and dig through your sex life to prove that you were a dirty slut "asking for it".  Be prepared to have to re-live your trauma, under the klieg lights of the press and disapproving social circles and the witness stand.  Be prepared, even if you do everything right by the book to end up in situations like these:

Of course I remember it, I even randomly decided to look back on my posts to see how I reacted to it and it was this:

Maybe the town will reexamine itself after this.

Town? No, no, no. This isn't just a town. This is a cultural infection.


But what you're describing isn't exclusive to rape cases. Defending the people you love and admire is a common phenomenon you would be able to observe with virtually any instance of those people being accused of wrongdoing and dogpiling the accuser. If one of your loved ones or best friends were accused of something so horrific would you not think "Man, I don't think ____ could've ever done something like this, I've known them for so many years now"? And being forced to deal with questions and re-living the events on the witness stand? Yes, that's called going to court.

When it comes to the cases where people were acting like "Yeah, maybe they did it, but who cares considering all their other accomplishments" or "She was asking for it, look at what she did with ___ and ___" yes, that's sexist and disgusting and dehumanizing. The harassment of accusers is also indefensible. But it's not fair to act like any questioning of the story, the routine process of answering questions about the event, are there to specifically pour salt on the wounds of rape victims. Are you arguing this shouldn't be happening? Someone should be barred from being cross-examined if they're making sexual assault accusations because that upsets them? That's how the University of Virginia story was so botched.

...and then, if you don't go by the book because you're stunned by the trauma or you were assaulted while unconscious or whatever, be prepared for people to second-guess and victim-blame til the cows come home and have it even worse.  That's what "tilted towards being harsh towards rape victims" means.

I'm not disagreeing with the notion that there are particular streaks of hate that come to the fore in these cases, my issue was that I simply don't think it's fair to act like every obstacle in the way of a man or woman making a rape or sexual assault accusation is there specifically to spite them. It was just the use of "Society thinks ____" that set me off. That's just too broad. Part of society is misogynistic. Part of society is also very much not. If that weren't the case we wouldn't be discussing this. I concede the rest of this argument to you because I think the rest of it is more important.

Imagine you're a judge for a moment and you're presented with a case that involves a man and a woman both in their early twenties, clean cut, otherwise totally unremarkable individuals. The man is accused of rape. The incident allegedly happened when they were alone, there are no direct witnesses, each individual has their friends there as character witnesses backing up what swell people they are. There's no physical evidence either way. Statute says the accused could face up to a decade in prison. What do you do?

Of course, it makes so much difference that the man is "clean cut", and has character witnesses (as if well-liked people can't do horrible things)!  And it's not like the only options are "decade in jail" and "get off scot free" the law distinguishes between various degrees of offenses.

At this point you're just hyper analyzing and getting offended by things you should know better than to think I meant. All I meant was that in this fictional scenario, these two people are both completely average individuals in every respect, from the way they look, their friends, their background, and more. It's a pure "He's guilty" vs "No I'm not." I know very, very well that "clean cut" and well-off people can do horrible things. You're talking to a sexual abuse victim right now.

In a situation like that there's no "offense" to be proved, which was my point. Even if the prosecution was saying "We only want to give the guy only 6 months in jail, it's whatever" you would still have to weigh the decision in your head based on the evidence and arguments provided. In a case like this, which is a very standard way for these cases to end up, you can't make a legal justification that isn't just a complete guess. You're tasked with branding someone a rapist for the rest of their lives on the basis of nothing. You just can't reasonably expect anything other than a not-guilty verdict in a fair system based on arguments and evidence.
21  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Have you bought anything at a Radioshack within a year? on: February 19, 2015, 01:09:07 am
I bought a pair of headphones there at some point last year I believe since other stores didn't specifically have what I wanted, but most of the stuff they had was insanely overpriced.
22  Atlas Fantasy Elections / Voting Booth / Re: MW: February 2015 Gubernatorial Election on: February 19, 2015, 12:37:33 am
1. Gass3268 (Labor)
23  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Is feminism the solution to what MRAs often complain about? on: February 19, 2015, 12:36:55 am
I don't even know if I agree with the blanket statement of "society is tilted toward being harsh to rape victims." What does that mean? I definitely agree that law enforcement doesn't take investigating sexual assault cases nearly as seriously or undergo them as promptly as they should, and that should absolutely change (emphasis on law enforcement investigations, and not extra-legal sexual assault squads formed by colleges and universities that are ran by young showboaters; the types who will simply dole out punishments before serious investigations have even taken place and maintain them even if the subjects have been cleared) but I don't think the average person seriously treats alleged rape victims with some sort of disdain. Not being as respectful as they should be, maybe, but society treats nothing perfectly.

I think some activists take the low conviction rates on sexual assault as some sort of conspiracy against them but the unfortunate reality of the situation is that these allegations are just really hard to prove. The pushback typically comes from the proposed solutions to getting around the fact that the burden of proof is really high, which are things like aforementioned extra-judical measures that often end up being unfair, social media mobbing, eerily right-wing sounding rules and laws about what the "right" sort of sexual practices and etiquette are, outright lowering the legal burden of proof, or the belief that video games and movies are instilling attitudes that lead to "rape culture." The frustration with how difficult it is to prove the allegations is very understandable, but the acting out from this frustration is often shortsighted and problematic.

When I was in Canada a couple weeks ago I was watching CBC Montreal just for funsies and there was a segment about a local woman who was allegedly sexually assaulted, she went straight to the police, they conducted a rape kit, asked questions, did all the proper procedure. But then weeks went by, then months. It turned out the police took (from memory) like three months to get the rape kit analyzed and sent back. That's f**king outrageous, and thankfully, is one of the aspects of this problem we can directly address, and should be directly addressing. We definitely need more people specifically to deal with sexual assault cases.

Yet in the end the issue always comes back to the courtroom and the legal burden of proof. Most of these instances don't exactly happen around a lot of witnesses and the physical evidence is murky even when it is immediately gathered (which is itself, rare). So what can you actually do? Imagine you're a judge for a moment and you're presented with a case that involves a man and a woman both in their early twenties, clean cut, otherwise totally unremarkable individuals. The man is accused of rape. The incident allegedly happened when they were alone, there are no direct witnesses, each individual has their friends there as character witnesses backing up what swell people they are. There's no physical evidence either way. Statute says the accused could face up to a decade in prison. What do you do? There's no legal rationale for deciding in favor of the plaintiff in a case like that; it just can't be rationally justified. And this is how a ton of these cases like this play out in court. This is why the only reasonable way of dealing with the problem that respects the presumption of innocence is in prevention and increasing ways to find evidence, but this too needs to be done in a way that isn't "hold these innocent men up to society as an example that can strike fear in other mens' hearts!" or "stop depicting sexual assault in media."
24  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Is feminism the solution to what MRAs often complain about? on: February 18, 2015, 05:54:43 pm
The unfortunate reality about false accusations is that there's really no way to know with much certainty how many actually occur. What is the standard that determines whether or not the accusation is true or not for the purposes of calculating the rate of false accusations? If that standard is anything other than the outcome of court cases, each study is doing little more than pulling standards out of their ass and using guesswork.

Let me make it clear there that I understand that using court outcomes to determine the rate of false accusations is total crap because rapes are exceptionally hard to prove for a number of reasons and obviously a disturbingly high number of them will forever go unproven, it's just that this is what makes trying to come up with an agreed-upon number for what the actual rate of false accusations are almost impossible. Each study invents it's own standard of proof and then people cherry pick the one most favorable to them. Feminists pick up studies that say it's anywhere from 1-5% (this number is so low that it strains logic something fierce to believe) and MRAs throw around numbers like ~40% which of course they would because that just benefits the "bitches be crazy" narratives of creepy MRAs.

I actually tend to believe the feminists in that outright fabricated rape accusations are exceedingly low (not 2% low, but pretty low), yet it's only logical to conclude that when you create a greater incentive to lie by stacking the deck against the defendant that number would naturally increase.

However, even if we set aside that argument entirely (which we probably should because it's not possible to really have an honest percentage anyway, and even if we did, that shouldn't affect the legal process, so whatever) I find it unsettling that people argue about, not the rate of false accusations, but the rate by which there is some sort of acceptable collateral damage in locking up and ruining the lives of innocent people if lowering the standard of proof might benefit other individuals a bit more instead. The presumption of innocence until proven guilt is the foundation of liberal democracy and the fundamental problem with Ezra's argument is that his approach runs contrary to a liberal judicial system; taking potentially innocent people and using them as a scary example is not a liberal-minded judicial argument but there really are people out there who actually think that's okay. Which I find terrifying.

Though Beet is right that the law is not actually as explicitly bad as its harshest critics complained it was, the fact that it is so deliberately ambiguous and open to interpretation should be a bit unsettling in its own right.

I think the problem is too many assume the Duke Lacrosse case was some type of normal happening.

You're right that it's not "normal happening" but the opposite end of this spectrum is just as bad (and, it should be pointed out, actually really damaging to rape victims too!) because there was very recently a story from the University of Virginia that Rolling Stone jumped on, immediately taking the accusers story as gospel out of respect and insistence that since she was probably telling the truth statistically, they didn't need to do their due diligence as a news outlet and properly investigate it before publishing anything, and they completely bungled the story so hard because there ended up being multiple problems with the subjects account of the events that they had to back away from it and apologize.

I don't understand why "rigorously investigate, but treat with respect" is so impossible in all of this. There is a wider spectrum of positions here than "ignore all rape accusations because of some false ones" or "create a system wherein we believe all false accusations and potentially ruin lives because The Needs of the Many, etc."
25  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of Radical Queers against Gay Marriage on: February 17, 2015, 09:23:30 pm
Several orders of magnitude less influential on its target social movement relative to the radicals of others and thus nothing more than a microscopic blemish on the chiseled ass that is gay rights movement. Almost too irrelevant to even form an opinion about in the first place.

Such as?

I seriously don't even get what you're playing at at this point. So far you've made a snarky post that sidestepped the point of mine, strawmanning what I was complaining about in the first place, made a bait thread, and generally danced around actually being forced to make any effort to respond earnestly.

You are capable of better than this, I've seen it.
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