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76  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Women's March Megathead on: January 21, 2017, 12:43:11 pm
Grab back, sisters, Grab back.
77  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: The TRUMP inauguration thread on: January 20, 2017, 01:47:29 pm
Worst speech since Kang or Kodos told us as a child he dreamed of being a baseball.
78  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: The TRUMP inauguration thread on: January 20, 2017, 12:32:15 pm
'Triumph des Willens' was better directed tbh.
79  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: How confident are you in the existence of a Supernatural Power? on: January 20, 2017, 07:05:14 am
4/5
Deism doesn't bother me (and deism by strict definition wouldn't) as a metaphysical concept. Applying theism does (see discussions passim)

I found, even when I did pray, it unhelpful. As a 7 year old I used to peek at everyone else and think I was doing it wrong. Never felt anything and felt that it did nothing either for me or as an 'effect' on people or issues outside of me. Got into an Aspergers obsessive routine to try and 'get' it as a result that took a decade to overcome. Even joined the choir to approach it at a different musically 'transcendent' level. Good way to meet boys though.

Quaker service almost got me somewhere but by then I'd started to move on.
80  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: Is it normal to get mad when someone tells you to pray? on: January 19, 2017, 06:58:12 am
It's not something I tend to run into in Scotland. We're (and most of Europe would probably be the same) just culturaly different. Even as someone who spent his formative years in Catholic school, prayer was communal or private. No one really offered it up as a course of action because you were either inclined to resort to it privately or not.

I would hope my beliefs would be respected enough to not be asked or recommended prayer but I'm not offended by it. It's only really been suggested by anti gay Christians I've run up against where I would take the suggestion as an offence for glaringly obvious reasons.
81  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: The idea of life at conception on: January 11, 2017, 05:48:52 pm
*snip*

This isn't really an "argument" I'm interested in having at great enough length or in great enough detail to respond substantively to a seven-paragraph post any more, because I've realized that I'm not familiar enough with either the life sciences or (obviously) what it is like to be pregnant to discuss it for more than a paragraph or so at a time (I know, I know, I probably should stop discussing it at all), but I just wanted to say that you've always been one of the voices on the forum whose ideas on this I've read with the most interest, and this post is no exception. Thank you for weighing in.

I only came back into this thread to correct what I think is an obviously false equivalency, but if I can't adequately explain why I think that then there really isn't any point.

It was just a general response from me. It wasn't aimed at anyone to respond to Smiley Someone very close to me (who I have to anonymise because people can get crazy about this stuff) is one of this countries top embryologists, which I say out of sheer swelling pride for them rather than anything else. We have good conversations about all this, which is a learning experience and has made it into something I like to ramble on about.
82  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update for Everyone IV - Hungover on: January 11, 2017, 05:40:36 pm
Just a note to say I'll be in the USA from mid March to late March. Will be flying in and back from New York, will perhaps be on a Florida road trip. Trying to get to Boston (as it keeps falling off my to do list) for a few days as well.
83  General Discussion / Religion & Philosophy / Re: The idea of life at conception on: January 11, 2017, 07:14:33 am
I think ontology is important here.

First of all I've always found an irony in say, bodies like the Catholic Church making appeals to embryology as a scientific support for its position given what the study of embryology actually entails. Fetal personhood as a modern day ontological concept is only possible because people can actually see whats happening in the womb in it's earliest stages. Which as a pursuit of scientific understanding, involves the destruction of embryonic 'life'. Likewise with the backwards march of viability (which no one who is pro-choice has much issue with) due to advances in neonatology.

But that's not really what I take issue with. Ultimately what concerns me, is the pursuit of defining 'life' by some medical or scientific definitive point by which one can then martial morality around. This turns pregnancy and it's impact on a mother from what is a human experience, a female experience to something outside of that. I think many pro-life advocates are terrifyingly bleak on that proposition.

If you define 'life' at conception, then armed with the fact that 50 to 80 percent of even implanted embryos spontaneously abort, then those spontaneous abortions are the ending of a 'life', without anyone's knowledge. Something that happens as a natural cycle. This is before we even get to known miscarriages later in a woman's pregnancy. These are now 'deaths', even if you want to treat them or categorise them differently. You are then saying that the womb, that a woman's reproductive system effectively is a place where death occurs far more often than life. That's a dangerous psychological route to go down and a worrying subversion of womenhood and pregnancy.

Even from a scientific perspective there isn't a neat consensus. Gastrulation for example is the point at which an embryo can no longer divide to become identical twins. It can no longer become more than one thing. Surely before that point, then all that embryo is, is a 'potential'; potentially one thing, or two things or three things or nothing. I think Anthony's point on life v existence above is quite an important one.
 
I've always felt that the person who is pregnant should get to decide when it's a person and everyone can have different understandings of that and not be morally or legally judged. Which seems to be a strangely radical proposal these days.

A person's psychological health is vitally important to them. Pregnancy can be hell for women. For many women who fall pregnant, psychologically there is 'no child'. It's just a state of being. If a woman is pregnant and does not see it as a person, and does not wish to be in 'the state of pregnancy' and that is causing her psychological distress, then she has a right and her doctor has a right to respond to that harm.

Waving development charts about and talking about 'life' and being so clinical or scientific about what is happening inside 'women like her' without actually caring about whats happening inside her (and how she is responding to this) is of absolutely no relevance and no help to her. At worst, dismissing her psychological concerns in some weird utilitarian fashion, demanding the child be carried to term, then taken away from her if she doesn't want it, simply adds what could be a life long psychological response to pregnancy, delivery, post natal responses and removal of the child, onto what was already pre-existing.
84  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Merry Christmas on: December 25, 2016, 12:18:36 pm
Merry Christmas Smiley

85  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Michigan mayor allegedly advocates killing the disabled on: December 19, 2016, 06:40:17 pm

I'll concede, at this point, that words like "privilege" and "honor" do a terrible job of getting across what I was trying to indicate and may constitute an outright romanticization of caregiving that's potentially dangerous to those cared for. Words like "duty" are, yes, better in this context. I reacted badly against the way you framed saying that because I thought it constituted an unacceptable defense of Famous Mortimer's utterly awful position. (I'm conceding this after a discussion on the subject with a friend who's in a situation similar to mine as both disabled and an occasional caregiver to other disabled people, btw.)


It's okay. I had hoped my opening salvo noting that 'the elderly and most children for that matter' are technically a 'burden' by extension of the argument would have let you know exactly what I thought of FM's position. Sometimes you have to call a 'spade a spade' simply to get anywhere in a system that will assume that because you 'do' you 'can' (like 70 year old women left to lift their adult sons into bed despite not having the strength to do so being essentially ignored by authorities because they happen to say it doesn't bother them)
86  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Michigan mayor allegedly advocates killing the disabled on: December 19, 2016, 03:36:52 pm

Excuse me?

I simply don't think it's morally acceptable to cut a swath through one's own children in order to selectively decide what aspects of one's life they inherit. You can sneer at this (and yes, you are sneering, and have been for months if not years) and imply that it means my attitudes towards people's inner eugenic thought processes are wicked and unfair all you like but all doing so accomplishes is frustrating me and making me hope you never speak to me again.

I don't wish to discuss this or any related subject with you further.

I'm not sneering. If anything I'm talking about things mitochondrial donation (which is currently in the news here for various legal reasons) I don't think that's 'cutting a swathe' through children (my sister is an embryologist; so it's something I've been focused on) I'm sorry if it's challenging your position, but the fact it's gotten you so wind up probably means you have some conflict on the matter.
87  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Michigan mayor allegedly advocates killing the disabled on: December 19, 2016, 06:22:28 am
Merry Christmas everyone!

Here is a 'holiday special' post (because this issue matters a great deal to me and I can't not respond to it)


People who are severely mentally or physically disabled are a burden. A huge burden. As are the elderly and most children for that matter (I'll leave that there for reasons that should be obvious) A massive part of my old job was acting in a medical-legal capacity with children who were severely disabled. I have first hand experience of the family difficulties and the support difficulties surrounding this. I have allocated funding, medical treatment, respite care and long term residential care. I've communicated with those who can communicate. I've appointed legal advocates for them. I have went to court for them.

It's taxing and ludicrously expensive. You can love someone to the point you'd do anything for them, but they are still a burden. Saying someone is a 'burden' or a 'strain' says nothing and implies nothing with respect to how you actually view that person. Pretending otherwise, or feigning obliviousness is in fact, a backhanded insult. If you couch a 'burden' in neutral 'loving' terms, that leads to people not taking your requirements and your needs for help and assistance seriously. Because 'didn't you say they weren't a burden?' We're already seeing this (in the UK at least) when it comes to residential provision. I'm sorry Nathan, but saying that caring for someone who can't care for themselves is a 'privilege and honor' is nothing but wank. It's not. It's a duty. It's a burden. And if you're doing it or thinking about it as some form of self reflection of penance then you'd last 5 minutes either caring for a loved one or for others in a voluntary or professional capacity.

That's point one. Point two, and on a different line of thought entirely, is that those who have an debilitating or inhibitive disability that is hereditary and that they would not wish upon their childrenas much they are able to deal with it in themselves, tend to be the most supportive of ways and means to mitigate this. Which pro-life fetishists tend not to have much time for because that involves both the act of termination and the use of embryology (founded as it is on the destructive study of embryos in the first instance, and the selective manner of implantation) as factors. The alternative is not having biological children; surrogacy or adoption. And while all of these are wonderful and noble things to do, it is a slap in the face to someone who can use these means in order to have their own biological children.
88  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Opinion of Hagrid on: November 14, 2016, 01:45:39 pm
F-ck you all for forcing me to come back out of exile for a single post.

If you think Hagrid is an HP you have no joy in your heart. There is literally nothing wrong with this kid. Nothing. He does nothing to slight anyone. He's been through a lot personally and in many things has done a complete 180. That's not an easy thing to do, and unlike most posters on here has 180ed in a way that actually doesn't make him a crucifix clutching asshole. When I drop by on Facebook he's happy. He's enjoying life and doing and experiencing new things. Let him feel for f-cks sake.
89  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Guys... on: November 11, 2016, 05:42:14 pm
If Afleitch can't handle a little ribbing on Atlas Forum, then he probably is in his personal life a complete mess. Good posters are only embarrassing themselves and exposing their own psychological weaknesses. Sad!

Go f-ck yourself you piece of pasty diarrhoeic sh-t Cheesy
You're abandoning a community you've been part of for years over an election result. Something is obviously amiss here aside from the result. Even Comey could solve that mystery.

I'm 32, married and working as a higher officer in the civil service in a job I started in July. I don't have the time.
90  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Guys... on: November 11, 2016, 04:20:01 pm
If Afleitch can't handle a little ribbing on Atlas Forum, then he probably is in his personal life a complete mess. Good posters are only embarrassing themselves and exposing their own psychological weaknesses. Sad!

Go f-ck yourself you piece of pasty diarrhoeic sh-t Cheesy
91  Forum Community / Forum Community / So long and thanks for all the pish! (j/k):D on: November 09, 2016, 06:39:46 am
It's been 13 years.

It's time to go. This is going to be an effort post, but I've been here long enough to think I deserve one Cheesy

I had made a decision, for my own and my husband's sanity, to leave anyway. What happened last night was a shock, but I knew it was coming eventually, if not now, then in mid terms, or in four years. You can't bottle something like that up once it's been let loose. The new reality of politics makes posting on a site like this more of a stress, more of an effort than a pleasure. It's been hard these past few years to be in the position that I have been, where I am in a country (the UK) that I don't want to be part of. I am not British. But I am Scottish, regardless of where we are constitutionally.

But my husband is American and that aspect of politics has always been a burning passion for me. It's why I joined all those years ago. But he has also made it very real these past five years.  I can't console him, ashen faced at 3am and then wade through the entrails online, disconnected from the effect it has. I can't do it anymore. It isn't fair.

It's just stopped being fun. I always promised myself I would stop, when that happened. It's happened so I'm stopping.

I had written a few parting shots. A few thanks and a few annoyances, but I decided not to, because ultimately I hope I have more friends than enemies. I know who likes me and who doesn't and it's been a relief, even with the potential for online anonymity to be myself and be judged based on that.

Unfortunately for me, all my maps are on here. So I want to leave them hosted. I won't be doing the random password re-set but I'll be here for a week or so to wrap things up. Do I promise not to be back? No; if anything happens on my doorstop I'll drop by. If Russian warplanes screech overhead, I'll let you know.

So. Bye Smiley

(Strangely cathartic)

Andrew
92  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: It's time to re-unite the Atlas Forum on: November 09, 2016, 03:50:31 am
No.
Personally, I think it's time I got going.
93  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: turnout reports, voting problems, and last minute dirty tricks on: November 08, 2016, 04:05:39 pm
tl;dr turnout is extremely high basically everywhere except for AA areas where it's lower (I would have thought it was obvious that the AA vote would decline without Obama but apparently some people are surprised by this)

Calling it now, this election is going to come down to the educated white vote. If Trump wins, it's because the educated white vote swung back to him and gave him the edge in NC, NH and the Midwest. If he loses, it'll be because they voted Clinton instead.

I'd give Clinton an 85% chance at winning, but I'm almost certain that the crosstab story of the cycle will be how whoever won was pushed over the edge by a proportionate advantage with educated white voters.

And Hispanics?...
94  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Slate/Votecastr real time election projections on: November 08, 2016, 03:42:21 pm
It's not entirely clear what the model as actually modeling at this point.
95  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: I will now accept my accolades on: November 08, 2016, 03:20:33 pm
I tried to tell you what was going on.  I really tried.  This looks like a landslide, folks.

LOL.
If you are in Great Britain, we have not seen any results yet.
And if there is a "landslide" as you say, who are you projecting a landslide for (Clinton or trump) ?

And never f-cking visited Cheesy
96  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: I will now accept my accolades on: November 08, 2016, 03:18:36 pm
You told us nuh'in.
97  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Slate/Votecastr real time election projections on: November 08, 2016, 11:14:10 am
Are early votes usually lean D or lean R?
Democratic.

If you're talking about early in the day, then no. A model like this made Obama think he was down in Ohio until after 5pm when after work voters came out.
98  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Slate/Votecastr real time election projections on: November 08, 2016, 11:10:31 am
99  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Slate/Votecastr real time election projections on: November 08, 2016, 10:43:12 am
You do realise for self promotional purposes, they want to have some sort of suspenseful narrative Smiley
100  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2016 U.S. Presidential Election / Re: Catholic priest put an aborted fetus on the altar in an appeal for Donald Trump on: November 08, 2016, 06:53:16 am


Hillary Clinton supports partial birth abortion; the killing of a viable fetus after an abortion.  That's what partial birth abortion is. 


No. It isn't.
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