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News: Atlas Hardware Upgrade complete October 13, 2013.

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1  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: What type of climate do you live in? on: September 16, 2014, 01:11:53 pm
Depends on what you consider the dividing line between C and D climate types. If it is set at -3 C as is usually done in Europe, it's Oceanic (Cfb). If the much more sensible 0 C dividing line (which is preferred in the US) is used, it's Humid Continental (Dfb).


Has anyone every stopped to consider that there is probably a strong bias toward European climate types under the Koppen system?  
Considering that under this system (especially if the dividing line preferred in Europe is used) most of Europe is classified under the same climate type  (Cfb), not really.
2  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: FC Chess Tournament 5 on: September 14, 2014, 03:31:48 am
I wonder, Franzl, if you might have had a chance to have a strong endgame yourself on move 17.  Instead of 17. Qa5, where the threat on c7 is easy for Black to parry, maybe 17. Qb4 is better, as now if Black plays 17...Rc8 then 18. Rxc8+ Qc8 19. Bb2 and it looks to me like Black's isolated d-pawn is lost.  If Black doesn't go in for that line, then he is just passive and still has to defend the weak pawns on d4 and b7.  They both make for nice targets.
Perhaps I'm missing something, but it seems to me that 19...Qc2 refutes this line, since it threatens both bishops with a similar attack as the one that happened in the game.
3  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / International Elections / Re: Scottish independence referendum prediction thread on: September 13, 2014, 03:49:34 pm
Independence referendums tend to either succeed by a large margin or fail. So:
No 50.5%
Yes 49.5%

Turnout 91.2%

No one resigns.
4  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: FC Chess Tournament 5 on: September 13, 2014, 03:22:09 pm
Unsurprisingly, gmantis has defeated me... Smiley
Thanks for an interesting game. But "unsurprisingly" is perhaps is a bit too strong. You did find in the end a defense which prevented a direct mating attack (excluding the last move, of course) and would have forced me into a slower endgame. And I have some unpleasant memories from end-games that were supposed to be won, but didn't quite end up this way...
5  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls / Re: CA-Gravis: Clinton 49% Paul 40%; Paul 44% Warren 33% on: September 11, 2014, 10:57:00 am
Warren vs. Paul 2016 according to Gravis


Yes, treat this from now on the same way as Zogby.
6  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Rand Paul: we must militarily destroy the Islamic State of Iraq & Syria on: September 11, 2014, 10:49:16 am
There goes one of the few Republicans I almost liked.
7  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: FC Chess Tournament 5 on: September 11, 2014, 10:11:39 am
I've sent a challenge to Franzl here.
8  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: FC Chess Tournament 5 on: August 10, 2014, 01:24:44 pm
Sorry for the long delay, here is the link to my game with Homely.
9  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Should people who oppose gay marriage be banned from this forum? on: August 04, 2014, 08:46:22 am
No. Ban people who want to ban others for having different opinions instead Wink
10  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of this quote on: July 26, 2014, 06:10:07 pm
The rewriting of history by the anti-Israel crowd is just shameless. 

The land Israel sits on is the Jewish homeland.  That area was conquered by Assyrians, Seleucid Greeks, Romans, Arabs and Mamluk Turks.  Jews didn't leave Israel by choice for the most part.  They were mostly sold in slavery in the Roman Empire and forced to flee at various points.  That's not to say that Israel belongs to Jews.  I don't think any land belongs to any one national group per se.  But, the land of Israel is not an ancestral Arab territory.  So, there's that.
I long for the time when an American arguing for the ridiculous argument that Jews had the right to create Israel due to historic rights shocked me, but those days of naivety are unfortunately long gone. And it's probably an utter waste of time to try to explain this but do you understand what your argument implies? Forget about this giving the Natives Americans rights over the whole of the American continent, this would mean that England is not the ancestral land of the English people -  they after all settled there several centuries after most Jews left Palestine. There is simply no way to make this argument without making you look both ignorant and an Israeli hack.

I think anyone can live anywhere dude.  Jewish people ought to be allowed to live in Brazil, America, Israel, China, Saudi Arabia, etc.  Arabs ought to be allowed to live anywhere too.  There is no land that belongs to one ethnic group.  I don't see how that's being an Israeli hack.  Do you think there was something wrong with the Jewish immigration to Ottoman or British Palestine?
No, that's not how things work. First, you can only live in a country with that country's permission, otherwise you're an illegal immigrant. And the mass settlement with the purpose of taking over a country is not immigration, it's invasion. Especially if the local population is not consulted. No independent Palestinian state would have allowed itself to be taken over like this.
For a corresponding counterexample, would you allow the Palestinian refugees and their descendants to immigrate to Israel?
And if you don't believe that no land belongs to one ethnic group, why bring up the absurd argument of Jewish historical rights?

Quote
Why was Israel created?  The places where Jewish people did live between the 1880s and 1940s were none to hospitable.  What instigated the two great migrations to Israel?  You have the horrible persecution in the Russian Empire by Alexander III and the holocaust. (Do the Israel haters have a problem with Jews escaping to Argentina or the United States?  Isn't that colonizing in your book?) Well, all that came to a head in the holocaust and you had a horrible refugee problem.  What were Jews supposed to do post-holocaust?  Stay in Poland?  Jews had been prevented from moving anywhere and when they stayed put, people killed millions of them and oppressed them.  So, if you give Jews an opportunity to have their own state, they're going to see it as a singular chance to find a place to live in peace and security.  Whose fault is that?  Not the Jews clearly, that's the fault of Russia and Germany.
This argument is a waste of space considering it fails to address how all this was the fault of the Palestinians

It wasn't.  But, that was the problem.  Under your rules, Jews couldn't live in any land that belonged to another ethnic group, they couldn't buy land because that's imperialist, what should they have done?  Is it just that they're an ethnic group without a country as of a certain date so they should just disappear?
"My" rules exist only in your imagination. I have nothing against immigration that is approved by the country being entered. And yes, more countries should have granted asylum to the Jews before WWII and the failure of most to do so contributed indirectly to the Holocaust, but that doesn't mean that it's right to take over other countries (and of course by the time Israel was founded, there war was over and there were other options to safeguard the Jewish people).

Quote
Would it have been better if Jews were all allowed to immigrate to the US?  I think so.  But, that didn't happen.  What happened was that Jews took that singular chance and founded their own state.  Was that a majority Arab state?  No.  Israel in 1948 was majority Jewish in population.  Did Jewish people steal land?  Maybe some did, but most bought land from Arabs.  So, before Israel was invaded by the entire Middle East, Israel was being as fair as possible and not creating their state using mass violence.  Once Israel was invaded, Israel needed defensible borders and you had the logical insanity of war.  One side does something bad, the other retaliates and so on.  That's what wars are like, it's never nice or fair.  Every war like that has refugees.  But, Israel has no reason to apologize for winning for its survival. 
 
First, most of the land was actually bought from absentee landlords, and the actual people living there were not consulted. Second, buying land does not give anyone the right to control some territory. Thirdly, Palestine was only a third Jews when it was divided without the agreement of the majority of the population. So the Palestinians have no reasons to apologize with not agreeing with this injustice.

The Jewish state in 1948 was majority Jewish, but that was less than half of Palestine.  And, I agree it wasn't fair that Palestinians couldn't return to their land.  Who could call that fair?  That cause of that unfairness was shared between Arabs and Jews however.  Most of those people voluntarily left and couldn't come back because of the whims of Arab nationalists and the historical circumstance.  Ultimately, you just have to realize that the Arab tried to destroy the state of Israel and they lost.  We need to move on from that at some point.  That's coming up on 70 years ago.  I mean, the partition of India and Pakistan was unfair to the people of the subcontinent.  But, here in the West we don't get upset out of our minds about the various irredentist claims over Kashmir.  This is just a case of automatic sympathy for the party with less power and the idea that perceived first world power should act "civilized" and the perceived third world people are noble savages who just can't help but lob missiles at children.
It's more likely that Israel receives less sympathy because they inflict most of the suffering. And remember that it was you who brought up a historical argument. I certainly don't deny Israel's right to exist now, but the history of its foundation is quite a different matter.

Quote
Once you get to that point, what's the solution?  Kill the Arabs with kindness?  Refuse to defend yourself because, who really deserves to have a state anyway?  Israel could have been better, sure.  But, just imagine if the roles were reversed.  Wouldn't the Palestinians just start an outright genocide?  That's the moral difference here.  God bless Elizabeth Warren for realizing that and defending the Jewish people.  That's the liberal, progressive thing to do.  Israel is a convenient target because they actually listen to critics and they're a "white" western, powerful country.  But, just as might doesn't make right, might doesn't make wrong. 
So you've already had ridiculous appeals to history, emotional outbursts without any relevance to the discussions at hand and now you're resorting to conjuring imaginary and impossible alternate history scenarios? Why not simply state that Israel is always right - that would at least be straightforward and honest?

No.  I think I have an even-handed view of Israel.  I think we should have a two-state solution and Israel should stop building settlements yesterday.
But neither you, nor Warren and most Congress members believe in actually taking any measures to encourage Israel to take the path to peace. So all these noble words only conceal an unprincipled and unconditional support of Israel.
11  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: July 26, 2014, 08:48:47 am
I trust the State Department about as much as I trust the Kremlin.

Sorry, but the U.S. has had the far more believable case throughout the Ukraine crisis. Also:

https://twitter.com/euromaidan/status/491997024737570816
http://cs620429.vk.me/v620429164/ea66/k14ggwJC9qk.jpg
And this is evidence why exactly? It's not as if to social networks are immune to fake news.
12  General Politics / Individual Politics / Re: Opinion of this quote on: July 26, 2014, 08:42:08 am
The rewriting of history by the anti-Israel crowd is just shameless. 

The land Israel sits on is the Jewish homeland.  That area was conquered by Assyrians, Seleucid Greeks, Romans, Arabs and Mamluk Turks.  Jews didn't leave Israel by choice for the most part.  They were mostly sold in slavery in the Roman Empire and forced to flee at various points.  That's not to say that Israel belongs to Jews.  I don't think any land belongs to any one national group per se.  But, the land of Israel is not an ancestral Arab territory.  So, there's that.
I long for the time when an American arguing for the ridiculous argument that Jews had the right to create Israel due to historic rights shocked me, but those days of naivety are unfortunately long gone. And it's probably an utter waste of time to try to explain this but do you understand what your argument implies? Forget about this giving the Natives Americans rights over the whole of the American continent, this would mean that England is not the ancestral land of the English people -  they after all settled there several centuries after most Jews left Palestine. There is simply no way to make this argument without making you look both ignorant and an Israeli hack.

Quote
Why was Israel created?  The places where Jewish people did live between the 1880s and 1940s were none to hospitable.  What instigated the two great migrations to Israel?  You have the horrible persecution in the Russian Empire by Alexander III and the holocaust. (Do the Israel haters have a problem with Jews escaping to Argentina or the United States?  Isn't that colonizing in your book?) Well, all that came to a head in the holocaust and you had a horrible refugee problem.  What were Jews supposed to do post-holocaust?  Stay in Poland?  Jews had been prevented from moving anywhere and when they stayed put, people killed millions of them and oppressed them.  So, if you give Jews an opportunity to have their own state, they're going to see it as a singular chance to find a place to live in peace and security.  Whose fault is that?  Not the Jews clearly, that's the fault of Russia and Germany.
This argument is a waste of space considering it fails to address how all this was the fault of the Palestinians

Quote
Would it have been better if Jews were all allowed to immigrate to the US?  I think so.  But, that didn't happen.  What happened was that Jews took that singular chance and founded their own state.  Was that a majority Arab state?  No.  Israel in 1948 was majority Jewish in population.  Did Jewish people steal land?  Maybe some did, but most bought land from Arabs.  So, before Israel was invaded by the entire Middle East, Israel was being as fair as possible and not creating their state using mass violence.  Once Israel was invaded, Israel needed defensible borders and you had the logical insanity of war.  One side does something bad, the other retaliates and so on.  That's what wars are like, it's never nice or fair.  Every war like that has refugees.  But, Israel has no reason to apologize for winning for its survival. 
 
First, most of the land was actually bought from absentee landlords, and the actual people living there were not consulted. Second, buying land does not give anyone the right to control some territory. Thirdly, Palestine was only a third Jews when it was divided without the agreement of the majority of the population. So the Palestinians have no reasons to apologize with not agreeing with this injustice.

Quote
Once you get to that point, what's the solution?  Kill the Arabs with kindness?  Refuse to defend yourself because, who really deserves to have a state anyway?  Israel could have been better, sure.  But, just imagine if the roles were reversed.  Wouldn't the Palestinians just start an outright genocide?  That's the moral difference here.  God bless Elizabeth Warren for realizing that and defending the Jewish people.  That's the liberal, progressive thing to do.  Israel is a convenient target because they actually listen to critics and they're a "white" western, powerful country.  But, just as might doesn't make right, might doesn't make wrong. 
So you've already had ridiculous appeals to history, emotional outbursts without any relevance to the discussions at hand and now you're resorting to conjuring imaginary and impossible alternate history scenarios? Why not simply state that Israel is always right - that would at least be straightforward and honest?
13  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: July 17, 2014, 04:26:02 pm
Russia has shot down a Ukrainian fighter jet flying in Ukrainian airspace.

This is after shooting down a high altitude Ukrainian military transport plane last week.

They are openly engaging in acts of war now.
Before believing the Ukrainian government too much, it should be noted that they haven't proven very trustworthy in the past, for example going as far as claiming that the insurgents in Slavyansk shelled the town themselves to make the Ukrainian army look bad.

Why are you such a Russian hack? Do you work for Pravda or something?
Does a Russian hack means someone who doesn't swallow every preposterous lie the Ukraine media government supplies to Western media? If so, I am. If we use a common sense definition of the term, certainly not. If you had bothered to check my other posts you would have seen for example that I believed that the pro-Russian rebels shot down the Malaysian plane today. But of course that would require effort which someone who prefers to have a simple-minded black and white world-view would be unlike to make. And of course you could read my other posts on this very page, and I'm ready to defend everything that I've written there - if you were able to use actual arguments, instead of reflexive name calling.
14  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Ukraine Crisis on: July 17, 2014, 03:39:04 pm
Russia has shot down a Ukrainian fighter jet flying in Ukrainian airspace.

This is after shooting down a high altitude Ukrainian military transport plane last week.

They are openly engaging in acts of war now.
Before believing the Ukrainian government too much, it should be noted that they haven't proven very trustworthy in the past, for example going as far as claiming that the insurgents in Slavyansk shelled the town themselves to make the Ukrainian army look bad.
15  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Malaysian Airlines 777 shot down over Ukraine, 295 people on board. on: July 17, 2014, 03:32:25 pm
Most likely the rebels brought down the plane, as it would be very unlikely for trained operators to confuse it with a military plane. However, since the Ukrainian government must have known that the Buks were captured for nearly three weeks, why didn't they close the airspace over the region?
16  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: What is your view on this immigration crisis on the border? on: July 17, 2014, 06:44:32 am
I confess that I don't follow Central American politics closely, but I distinctly remember that all civil wars there ended 20 years ago or more and that most countries there are reasonably free (that's what the mostly US government funded Freedom house thinks, for example), so what exactly is this violence they are supposed to be fleeing from? Turning back genuine refugees is indeed inhuman, but not if they're not really refugees.
17  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Hear ye, peasants, the Kingdom of North Sudan hath been declared on: July 14, 2014, 02:20:00 pm

Was this an attempt at subtle sarcasm or you really don't know about the Afrikaners, just to name an example?
18  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: FIFA 2014 World Cup - Official Discussion Thread on: July 14, 2014, 02:03:03 pm
LOL @ the user-picked all-star team this year:


I suppose that the voters liked the haircuts of David Luiz and Marcello.
19  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: FIFA 2014 World Cup - Official Discussion Thread on: July 13, 2014, 05:16:13 pm
Did they just give the golden ball to Messi?

LOL
I suppose this was meant to be consolation.
20  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: FIFA 2014 World Cup - Official Discussion Thread on: July 13, 2014, 05:13:44 pm
Congratulations to Germany, the (slightly) better team tonight!
21  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: FIFA 2014 World Cup - Official Discussion Thread on: July 13, 2014, 04:33:34 pm
Two minutes seem a bit too short...
22  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: The FIFA World Cup tipping competition on: July 13, 2014, 01:14:08 pm
Germany 2-0 Argentina
23  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: FIFA 2014 World Cup - Official Discussion Thread on: July 12, 2014, 03:50:07 pm
The referees continue to prop up Brazil even now. Thiago Silva should have been sent of for denying an obvious goalscoring opportunity, but I guess a repeat of last match is not wanted now.
And Robben who threw himself?
Are we talking of the same incident? Because in this one he was clearly held up by Silva.
24  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: FIFA 2014 World Cup - Official Discussion Thread on: July 12, 2014, 03:05:44 pm
The referees continue to prop up Brazil even now. Thiago Silva should have been sent of for denying an obvious goalscoring opportunity, but I guess a repeat of last match is not wanted now.
25  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: The FIFA World Cup tipping competition on: July 12, 2014, 02:00:38 pm
Brazil 2-1 Netherlands
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