The Darker Side of the News

Seen something interesting in the news or on the intertubes? Discuss it here.

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Grop
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Grop » Fri Mar 04, 2016 2:37 pm UTC

Weird thing about this study is that they don't seem to use stats on accidents that really happened ~ unless my quick reading skills are failing. This is all about perceived distractedness.

(I think this article belongs in the humorous news thread).
Last edited by Grop on Fri Mar 04, 2016 3:48 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby HES » Fri Mar 04, 2016 2:45 pm UTC

...they found talking on the phone only accounted for one percent of distractions. Distractions from children, meanwhile, accounted for 12 percent of all distractions.

Thats... not a meaningful comparison. The whole article is a little wonky with its handling of statistics and risks.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Lazar » Fri Mar 04, 2016 11:31 pm UTC

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Thesh » Sat Mar 05, 2016 12:42 am UTC

Well, it was the Texas Republican Party whose official platform included opposing critical thinking in schools.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby addams » Sat Mar 05, 2016 1:02 am UTC

Those folks seem to think, 'The Masses', are over educated, now.
http://tcpca.org/2016/03/17/in-love-with-donald-trump/

That link quit working.
I replaced it with a random link.
This link also makes the point.
Last edited by addams on Wed Mar 23, 2016 1:59 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Lazar » Sat Mar 05, 2016 8:40 am UTC

A federal immigration judge argues that 3- and 4-year-olds are capable of representing themselves in court, and thus have no need of public defenders:

I've taught immigration law literally to 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds. It takes a lot of time. It takes a lot of patience. They get it. It’s not the most efficient, but it can be done. […] I've told you I have trained 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds in immigration law. You can do a fair hearing. It's going to take you a lot of time.

I wouldn't trust him to represent himself in court.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Mambrino » Sat Mar 05, 2016 9:59 pm UTC

Newspaper raided by the police in Turkey. One interesting bit: according to tweets by journalists working there, the government is attempting to "wipe the newspaper's entire online archive".

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Grop » Sun Mar 06, 2016 9:24 pm UTC

No news, dark story: my grandmother just discovered that a cousin of hers had been dead for one year. She'd been wondering why he wouldn't answer the phone.

His close family knew he was dead, but didn't think of contacting his cousins (do old people even have cousins anyway? Also I have never heard of this man, I wouldn't have told him about my grandmother if she had died before him). She found out because he was somewhat famous (otherwise I suppose she would have never known for sure), and she read some news about him being dead. She also told her living cousins.

I wondered lately: if I suddenly died (because accidents happen), would all my friends know? Probably not the ones who live afar, and who don't know my local friends.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Angua » Sun Mar 06, 2016 9:52 pm UTC

Are you on facebook? Lots of people tend to post on your page when you die which then lets other people see that you are dead. Also, lots of people post on your close relatives' page giving their condolences which then lets people who are friends with them know that you are dead.

Social media does have it's benefits.

Alternatively, you can start sending out mass emails to everyone you know (like Christmas card updates or whatever) and then when you die someone will probably hit reply all to let the whole list know.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Grop » Mon Mar 07, 2016 1:00 am UTC

Thanks, that is good advice (although I am not very worried about these questions).

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby addams » Mon Mar 07, 2016 1:30 am UTC

It is the old, "Need to Know" list.
I have asked to be put on the "Need to Know" list.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Thu Mar 10, 2016 9:37 pm UTC

Manitoba First Nation declares state of emergency over suicide epidemic

A remote Manitoba First Nation declared a state of emergency Wednesday after six suicides in the last two months and 140 attempts in the last two weeks alone. Officials from the Pimicikamak Cree Nation, known as Cross Lake, say health workers on the northern reserve can no longer cope. Band councillor Donnie McKay said the nursing station is only staffed by two nurses overnight. "They're going 24 hours and they're ready to drop."

The community of 8,300 is traumatized and needs immediate help from the provincial and federal governments, McKay said. A meeting with Manitoba Health Minister Sharon Blady last month resulted in one mental-health worker being sent to the community for an eight-hour shift, he said.

Acting Chief Shirley Robinson said the reserve -- about 500 kilometres north of Winnipeg near a Manitoba Hydro generating station -- has an 80 per cent unemployment rate.

Frustrated residents occupied the generating station in 2013. They said their traditional lands are regularly transformed into a floodway and none of the promised economic development and employment programs has materialized. Premier Greg Selinger personally apologized a year ago for the damage caused by the hydro development to Cross Lake's traditional land, way of life and cultural identity.

After that apology, Robinson said there was a sense of hope, but that quickly vanished. "There is despair."

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Coyne » Fri Mar 11, 2016 12:33 am UTC

Mighty Jalapeno wrote:Manitoba First Nation declares state of emergency over suicide epidemic

A remote Manitoba First Nation declared a state of emergency Wednesday after six suicides in the last two months and 140 attempts in the last two weeks alone. Officials from the Pimicikamak Cree Nation, known as Cross Lake, say health workers on the northern reserve can no longer cope. Band councillor Donnie McKay said the nursing station is only staffed by two nurses overnight. "They're going 24 hours and they're ready to drop."

The community of 8,300 is traumatized and needs immediate help from the provincial and federal governments, McKay said. A meeting with Manitoba Health Minister Sharon Blady last month resulted in one mental-health worker being sent to the community for an eight-hour shift, he said.

Acting Chief Shirley Robinson said the reserve -- about 500 kilometres north of Winnipeg near a Manitoba Hydro generating station -- has an 80 per cent unemployment rate.

Frustrated residents occupied the generating station in 2013. They said their traditional lands are regularly transformed into a floodway and none of the promised economic development and employment programs has materialized. Premier Greg Selinger personally apologized a year ago for the damage caused by the hydro development to Cross Lake's traditional land, way of life and cultural identity.

After that apology, Robinson said there was a sense of hope, but that quickly vanished. "There is despair."


I'm sure the apology is nice and all, but will it stop their traditional lands from being flooded? Nope. That hydro power is way more important than 8300 people. The residents' "hope...quickly vanished" because they realized that apology was just as good as the hot air it was made with.

And I hate to tell all the residents this, but they're not going to get any of that economic redevelopment, either. Not unless they come up with $15 million or so to sue...but if they had $15 million, they wouldn't need the redevelopment. Oh, and even if they win the judgement might only be good if the promise was made by government; if it was made by a company, the company will just declare bankruptcy.

And as for that state of emergency? I'm sure the politicos can bobble their heads and flap their lips debating what to do until the residents are all gone and there's no need for the emergency anymore. Presto...solved.

We're told that what we did to the downtrodden in the past is bad...but we still do it.
In all fairness...

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Vahir » Fri Mar 11, 2016 12:40 am UTC

What first nations? No first nations here. There's no problems in Canada. NO PROBLEMS IN CANADA.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Fri Mar 11, 2016 4:09 pm UTC

LOOK! TRUDEAU IS HUGGING THAT NICE KENYAN MAN! EVERYTHING IS GREAT!

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby elasto » Mon Mar 14, 2016 5:35 am UTC

Global temperatures in February smashed previous monthly records by an unprecedented amount, according to Nasa data, sparking warnings of a climate emergency.

The result was “a true shocker, and yet another reminder of the incessant long-term rise in global temperature resulting from human-produced greenhouse gases”, wrote Jeff Masters and Bob Henson in a blog on the Weather Underground, which analysed the data released on Saturday.

It confirms preliminary analysis from earlier in March, indicating the record-breaking temperatures.

The global surface temperatures across land and ocean in February were 1.35C warmer than the average temperature for the month, from the baseline period of 1951-1980. The global record was set just one month earlier, with January already beating the average for that month by 1.15C above the average for the baseline period.

Although the temperatures have been spurred on by a very large El Niño in the Pacific Ocean, the temperature smashed records set during the last large El Niño from 1998, which was at least as strong as the current one.

The month did not break the record for hottest month, since that is only likely to happen during a northern hemisphere summer, when most of the world’s land mass heats up.

“We are in a kind of climate emergency now,” Stefan Rahmstorf, from Germany’s Potsdam Institute of Climate Impact Research and a visiting professorial fellow at the University of New South Wales, told Fairfax Media. “This is really quite stunning ... it’s completely unprecedented,” he said.


Fortunately we're still in the region where temperature rises produce more upsides than downsides (through increased crop yields etc.) but might mean we have less wiggle room to develop the kinds of seismic shifts in technologies that we'll need to move the world off of fossil fuels without lowering anyone's quality of life.

link

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby sardia » Fri Mar 18, 2016 10:31 pm UTC

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/20/upsho ... drops.html
Women don't take on lower paying jobs, but rather women taking on jobs makes them lower paying.
Women’s median annual earnings stubbornly remain about 20 percent below men’s. Why is progress stalling?
It may come down to this troubling reality, new research suggests: Work done by women simply isn’t valued as highly.
That sounds like a truism, but the academic work behind it helps explain the pay gap’s persistence even as the factors long thought to cause it have disappeared. Women, for example, are now better educated than men, have nearly as much work experience and are equally likely to pursue many high-paying careers. No longer can the gap be dismissed with pat observations that women outnumber men in lower-paying jobs like teaching and social work.
A new study from researchers at Cornell University found that the difference between the occupations and industries in which men and women work has recently become the single largest cause of the gender pay gap, accounting for more than half of it. In fact, another study shows, when women enter fields in greater numbers, pay declines — for the very same jobs that more men were doing before.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby icanus » Sun Mar 20, 2016 5:26 pm UTC

sardia wrote:
In fact, another study shows, when women enter fields in greater numbers, pay declines — for the very same jobs that more men were doing before.

Huh, doubling the pool of available workers in a field decreases wages? Who would have guessed!

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby sardia » Sun Mar 20, 2016 7:10 pm UTC

icanus wrote:Huh, doubling the pool of available workers in a field decreases wages? Who would have guessed!

They accounted for that, but I'm sure there's gonna be yet another reason why Icanus doesn't think sexism is real.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Chen » Tue Mar 22, 2016 12:00 pm UTC

From a link in that Nytimes article we get:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/24/upsho ... .html?_r=0

Occupations that most value long hours, face time at the office and being on call — like business, law and surgery — tend to have the widest pay gaps. That is because those employers pay people who spend longer hours at the office disproportionately more than they pay people who don’t, Dr. Goldin found. A lawyer who works 80 hours a week at a big corporate law firm is paid more than double one who works 40 hours a week as an in-house counsel at a small business.


Full link to the paper: http://scholar.harvard.edu/files/goldin ... 2014_1.pdf

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Lazar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 2:34 pm UTC

A new law in Indiana makes it illegal for a woman to seek abortion in cases of fetal abnormality or defect. To me, that seems like one of the circumstances in which those with ambivalent views might be more amenable to abortion – but apparently the Republicans will grasp at any opportunity to chip away at reproductive rights.

Also, the law requires aborted fetal remains to be buried or cremated, rather than disposed of as medical waste. This provision is so utterly needless that I would honestly describe it as fetus fetishism.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby sardia » Fri Mar 25, 2016 3:18 pm UTC

Lazar wrote:A new law in Indiana makes it illegal for a woman to seek abortion in cases of fetal abnormality or defect. To me, that seems like one of the circumstances in which those with ambivalent views might be more amenable to abortion – but apparently the Republicans will grasp at any opportunity to chip away at reproductive rights.

Also, the law requires aborted fetal remains to be buried or cremated, rather than disposed of as medical waste. This provision is so utterly needless that I would honestly describe it as fetus fetishism.

Isn't that last clause in order to kick stem cell research in the balls?

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:15 pm UTC

Lazar wrote:Also, the law requires aborted fetal remains to be buried or cremated, rather than disposed of as medical waste. This provision is so utterly needless that I would honestly describe it as fetus fetishism.


The viewpoint is that a fetus is human. The point is to get a law on the books that exclaims that fact. I recognize that you don't believe in that, but there are a good number of people who do believe that a fetus is an independent human (including myself). With respect to seeking abortion for Down Syndrome... how is it much different than banning the murder of young children diagnosed for Down Syndrome? For those who believe that the entity inside the womb is an independent human being, that's the perspective you have to look at the law from.

To someone who believes that your humanity is retained the day before you are born (and not just magically appears just because you've left the womb), its a natural conundrum. If we aren't allowed to murder children with Down Syndrome, why are we allowed to end the life of fetuses with Down Syndrome? Do we have to "kill them before they gain humanity at some undisclosed time between the 2nd and 3rd trimester" ??

I have had long discussions about abortion with many people. It always comes down to the viewpoint of whether or not the child in the womb is a "piece of tissue" or if it is a "independent human baby". And unfortunately, I've never found a way to resolve this argument despite my many years of debate.

Its important to recognize that anti-abortion / pro life people bend viewpoints so that we can write laws. But if we were to write one that was "pure", it'd probably be the banning of all abortion of any kind. Because when you believe that a fetus is a human life, that's the only logically sound conclusion and logical way to write the law. But bending on morals so that we can reach consensus is a good thing, and allows the political system to move forward, amirite?

Because I know you now see me as an anti-women misogynist now that I've revealed my viewpoints to you. But as fellow citizens, we have to put up with our moral differences while writing the laws.

Isn't that last clause in order to kick stem cell research in the balls?


Stem Cell research is a proxy-war in the abortion debate. The underlying issue is that the discussion over abortion never happened on a national stage and the Supreme Court decided to tie abortion rights to the 9th Amendment. I'm staunchly anti-abortion / pro-life (although I recognize that there's clearly a conflict of morals here, as pro-choice people rarely deny the humanity of a fetus, but instead focus on the rights of the woman).

Which is where I'm intrigued by Lazar's post, which is the first I've seen in a while that straight up denies the humanity of a fetus. In my experience however, its a loop-around back to the abortion debate. (ie: Lazar's logic is probably that the woman's right is absolute, and therefore the fetus must not be treated as human. Although I've heard many anti-fetus arguments in the past, none of them seem logically sound to the core principle of induction).

Similarly, the trap that a lot of pro-life people get into is that the fetus's humanity is absolute, and we are against human testing. Therefore, stem-cell research from fetal tissue is immoral. Its not so much that most pro-life people actually have an opinion on Stem Cell research, its that they recognize that its a proxy-war for the "real" argument.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby sardia » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:32 pm UTC

Are the pro life faction appalled at the lack of social services given to post term fetuses? Or to fetuses several years later?

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:33 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Are the pro life faction appalled at the lack of social services given to post term fetuses? Or to fetuses several years later?


Pro-life generally means pro life, so yes. A good practicing Catholic is taught to be pro-life (anti-abortion), pro-life (anti-death penalty), pro-life (pro-welfare).

So please, leave the Republican vs Democrat labels at the door when you enter this debate. Recognize that the "pro life" faction is generally composed of the Religious, but not necessarily (I know atheists who are pro-life, and I know Catholics who are pro-choice). I admit that I'm a bit hazy on other religious institutions, so I can really only speak for the religion I'm most familiar with.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Mutex » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:39 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:Stem Cell research is a proxy-war in the abortion debate. The underlying issue is that the discussion over abortion never happened on a national stage and the Supreme Court decided to tie abortion rights to the 9th Amendment. I'm staunchly anti-abortion / pro-life (although I recognize that there's clearly a conflict of morals here, as pro-choice people rarely deny the humanity of a fetus, but instead focus on the rights of the woman).

Which is where I'm intrigued by Lazar's post, which is the first I've seen in a while that straight up denies the humanity of a fetus. In my experience however, its a loop-around back to the abortion debate. (ie: Lazar's logic is probably that the woman's right is absolute, and therefore the fetus must not be treated as human. Although I've heard many anti-fetus arguments in the past, none of them seem logically sound to the core principle of induction).


Scientific evidence points to foetuses not being sentient (by measuring the waves produced by the brain), so if foetuses aren't sentient then they're not yet human. The potential for humanity exists, same as with a just fertilised egg - are you against the morning after pill too?

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Tyndmyr » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:41 pm UTC

Sardia, who cares? Does striving for the hypocrisy "gotcha" in this way ever actually work? Or does it only ever result in the other side strongly disagreeing? You're reaching a lot to patch together fairly unconnected issues based on factionalism.

KnightExemplar wrote:I have had long discussions about abortion with many people. It always comes down to the viewpoint of whether or not the child in the womb is a "piece of tissue" or if it is a "independent human baby". And unfortunately, I've never found a way to resolve this argument despite my many years of debate.


Why a binary? I get that legalities like nice, firm points with clear dividing lines, but biology is often gradual. Even a newborn baby has questionable independence. From a strictly biological fashion, it seems blatantly obvious that there is a process of becoming more human.

Punting babies off cliffs being out of fashion these days, it seems like modern sensibilites are fairly unified in not killing babies post-birth. So, we only need worry about the earlier period. Logically, the later the abortion, the closer it is to killing a human. Assuming one believes that this is a bad thing, then logically, you'd want abortions to happen as rapidly as possible if they're happening at all(though none is likely still best, a delayed one is worse than an early one), yes? Fairly obvious tradeoff of values.

It seems like it should be possible to optimize for this.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Lazar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 6:41 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:The viewpoint is that a fetus is human. The point is to get a law on the books that exclaims that fact. I recognize that you don't believe in that, but there are a good number of people who do believe that a fetus is an independent human (including myself)

But the state of Indiana does not consider fetuses to be human beings: you can still get an abortion there, just under more limited circumstances. To compel funerary practices for fetal remains is not a measure with any practical or moral imperative behind it; the supposed wrong of abortion lies in the killing of fetuses, not in the disposal of them. This is, at best, a feel-good measure that puts the cart far before the horse – a piece of theater.

With respect to seeking abortion for Down Syndrome... how is it much different than banning the murder of young children diagnosed for Down Syndrome? For those who believe that the entity inside the womb is an independent human being, that's the perspective you have to look at the law from.

It's different in that the murder of children without Down syndrome is also illegal. The new law suggests an absurd moral calculus in which you're not allowed to murder people for having a disability, but you're still free to murder people for other reasons. There's no comprehensible basis for this position; it simply represents the Republicans' haphazard attempts to restrict abortion in whatever way they can. That approach may make a certain utilitarian sense from their position – if people are being murdered, then save as many as you can by whatever available means – but from anyone else's perspective it results in an inconsistent mess of law and policy. It's one thing for the state to say that abortion is murder, another for it to say that abortion is sort of murder but sort of okay.

[Greatly ninjaed.]
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby morriswalters » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:05 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:With respect to seeking abortion for Down Syndrome... how is it much different than banning the murder of young children diagnosed for Down Syndrome? For those who believe that the entity inside the womb is an independent human being, that's the perspective you have to look at the law from.
This is bad law. Worse, as a Downs parent I wish the state gave a shit. They don't. Everything that the states have ever done for Downs children has been mandated. I will probably not outlive my Downs child, you may guess that his future is uncertain after that point. I understand the reasonable people can disagree with this issue, but they could leave Downs children out of it.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby sardia » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:25 pm UTC

Tyndmyr, is that outrage of yours even real? I didn't start this abortion shit, I postulated that the last clause was to stop stem cell research, which isn't even certain. Abortion laws has never really made sense except as a factional tool to gain(or at this point votes). It's like asking white people if they really care about how often inner city people smoke pot. Not really, but they will if you scare them enough.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Tyndmyr » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:27 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Tyndmyr, is that outrage of yours even real? I didn't start this abortion shit, I postulated that the last clause was to stop stem cell research, which isn't even certain. Abortion laws has never really made sense except as a factional tool to gain(or at this point votes). It's like asking white people if they really care about how often inner city people smoke pot. Not really, but they will if you scare them enough.


Outrage? No, I'm merely annoyed that you have to drag absurd partisanship into every conversation ever, instead of staying on topic.

Lazar wrote:
With respect to seeking abortion for Down Syndrome... how is it much different than banning the murder of young children diagnosed for Down Syndrome? For those who believe that the entity inside the womb is an independent human being, that's the perspective you have to look at the law from.

It's different in that the murder of children without Down syndrome is also illegal. The new law suggests an absurd moral calculus in which you're not allowed to murder people for having a disability, but you're still free to murder people for other reasons. There's no comprehensible basis for this position; it simply represents the Republicans' haphazard attempts to restrict abortion in whatever way they can. That approach may make a certain utilitarian sense from their position – if people are being murdered, then save as many as you can by whatever available means – but from anyone else's perspective it results in an inconsistent mess of law and policy. It's one thing for the state to say that abortion is murder, another for it to say that abortion is sort of murder but sort of okay.

[Greatly ninjaed.]


It's pretty clear that nobody actually has such an absurd view.

They are, from their perspective, simply trying to stop as many murders as they can. They also happen to believe that the disabled are disproportionately at risk. So, considering they cannot actually ban abortions altogether, their action is indeed pretty consistent.

If you expect all law, ever, to adhere to a single consistent moral viewpoint, you will be sadly disappointed, I fear. This is not merely an issue with abortion. Law merely represents a tangle of history, compromise, etc, not a logically coherent philosophy.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:29 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Why a binary? I get that legalities like nice, firm points with clear dividing lines, but biology is often gradual. Even a newborn baby has questionable independence. From a strictly biological fashion, it seems blatantly obvious that there is a process of becoming more human.


Its binary because the abortion debate forces it to be binary. At some point, abortion must be "legal", and after a certain point, it must be "illegal".

Lazar wrote:It's different in that the murder of children without Down syndrome is also illegal. The new law suggests an absurd moral calculus in which you're not allowed to murder people for having a disability, but you're still free to murder people for other reasons. There's no comprehensible basis for this position; it simply represents the Republicans' haphazard attempts to restrict abortion in whatever way they can. That approach may make a certain utilitarian sense from their position – if people are being murdered, then save as many as you can by whatever available means – but from anyone else's perspective it results in an inconsistent mess of law and policy. It's one thing for the state to say that abortion is murder, another for it to say that abortion is sort of murder but sort of okay.


Hmm, maybe if Abortion weren't "settled" by a Supreme Court decision tying the practice to the 9th Amendment, maybe then local laws could be written consistently?

The political tactics for eroding Abortion are done so because the straightforward approach has been banned by the Supreme Court. Or have you already forgotten the political consequences of Roe vs Wade? It is simply impossible to write a straightforward abortion law as long as the 9th Amendment stands, and as long as Roe vs Wade stands.

So what do you expect an anti-abortion activist to do? I guess give up their morals and lay down, since they're your political opponents. But I assure you the pro-life camp is still pissed about Roe vs Wade.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Tyndmyr » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:32 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:Why a binary? I get that legalities like nice, firm points with clear dividing lines, but biology is often gradual. Even a newborn baby has questionable independence. From a strictly biological fashion, it seems blatantly obvious that there is a process of becoming more human.


Its binary because the abortion debate forces it to be binary. At some point, abortion must be "legal", and after a certain point, it must be "illegal".


*shrug* We measure at least, degrees of culpability in other things. Yeah, there has to be some point of illegality, but surely some gradient of punishments between "none" and "HOLY SHIT it's murder" would be acheivable.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:34 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:Why a binary? I get that legalities like nice, firm points with clear dividing lines, but biology is often gradual. Even a newborn baby has questionable independence. From a strictly biological fashion, it seems blatantly obvious that there is a process of becoming more human.


Its binary because the abortion debate forces it to be binary. At some point, abortion must be "legal", and after a certain point, it must be "illegal".


*shrug* We measure at least, degrees of culpability in other things. Yeah, there has to be some point of illegality, but surely some gradient of punishments between "none" and "HOLY SHIT it's murder" would be acheivable.


The problem is that the gradient of "punishments" are leaning towards "government sponsorship". IE: Abortion services provided by government money and tax dollars.

So its not so much between "none" and "murder". The political reality is closer to "oh, this is good for us, so lets incentivize the practice with tax dollars" vs "don't allow in a particular state". Especially since Roe vs Wade has already settled the regulation to only exist in the 3rd trimester of a pregnancy.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Lazar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:38 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:If you expect all law, ever, to adhere to a single consistent moral viewpoint, you will be sadly disappointed, I fear. This is not merely an issue with abortion. Law merely represents a tangle of history, compromise, etc, not a logically coherent philosophy.

That's true, but it's rare for positions as diametrically opposed as those of pro-choicers and pro-lifers to be enshrined in law at the same time. Generally in well-functioning societies, we don't see the proponents of one political view accusing their opponents of endorsing murder.

I find this law curious because in many of the other countries that place partial restrictions on abortion, fetal defects are one of the circumstances in which it's permitted; as I noted above, I'd expect this to be a case where fence-sitters would be more open to the permissibility of abortion, not less. So it's odd to see those who favor restrictions taking the opposite approach here.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:49 pm UTC

Lazar wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:If you expect all law, ever, to adhere to a single consistent moral viewpoint, you will be sadly disappointed, I fear. This is not merely an issue with abortion. Law merely represents a tangle of history, compromise, etc, not a logically coherent philosophy.

That's true, but it's rare for positions as diametrically opposed as those of pro-choicers and pro-lifers to be enshrined in law at the same time. Generally in well-functioning societies, we don't see the proponents of one political view accusing their opponents of endorsing murder.


Oh please. Gun Control accuses the other side of murder regularly. The number of times Godwin is invoked in political talks is epic (Donald Trump is literally Hitler), even before the current political season. And some things (like the Death Penalty / Waterboarding) are literally endorsements of murder or torture, so yeah... there's that.

Pro-choicers are murderers. Pro-lifers are misogynistic old people who believe in the sky pasta zombie. Its politics, and anyone who has stepped into the crap that is the abortion debate knows that abortion is one of the most toxic political arguments of all.

I find this law curious because in many of the other countries that place partial restrictions on abortion, fetal defects are one of the circumstances in which it's permitted: as I noted above, I'd expect this to be a case where fence-sitters would be more open to the permissibility of abortion, not less. So it's odd to see those who favor restrictions taking the opposite approach here.


Sure. I can agree that the Indiana law specifically would not pass by me specifically. I mean, I understand where it comes from morally but I recognize that there are enough neighbors of mine who would disagree with the law.

But the moral consistency is rather simple. Abortion is wrong, so lets do what we can to end it. And again, the straightforward approach to writing the law is illegal due to Roe vs Wade, so it becomes harder and harder to figure out the "correct" way to set the law to a consistent moral standard.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Lazar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:56 pm UTC

KnightExemplar wrote:Oh please. Gun Control accuses the other side of murder regularly. Donald Trump is literally Hitler. The number of times Godwin is invoked in political talks is epic, even before the current political season.

I don't think the situation with gun control is the same: barring some fringe elements, gun control advocates don't accuse the other side of endorsing murder, just of misguidedly pursuing policies that make murders more likely. There's a world of difference between this and the idea that your opponents' position is explicitly and fundamentally murderous.

The death penalty issue may come closer, but even there I don't think we face quite the same sort of moral binary. For example, I oppose the death penalty, but I do so because I don't think it's useful or necessary, and I'm unwilling to accept any rate of error in its implementation. But I don't consider the death penalty in itself to be murder, nor do I accuse the supporters of it of supporting murder.
Last edited by Lazar on Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:03 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Tyndmyr » Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:03 pm UTC

Lazar wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:Oh please. Gun Control accuses the other side of murder regularly. Donald Trump is literally Hitler. The number of times Godwin is invoked in political talks is epic, even before the current political season.

I don't think the situation with gun control is the same: barring some fringe elements, gun control advocates don't accuse the other side of endorsing murder, just of misguidedly pursuing policies that make murders more likely. There's a world of difference between this and the idea that your opponents' position is explicitly and fundamentally murderous.


Pretty much constantly, they do. Name a gun-control advocacy group that hasn't.

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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby KnightExemplar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:04 pm UTC

Lazar wrote:
KnightExemplar wrote:Oh please. Gun Control accuses the other side of murder regularly. Donald Trump is literally Hitler. The number of times Godwin is invoked in political talks is epic, even before the current political season.

I don't think the situation with gun control is the same: barring some fringe elements, gun control advocates don't accuse the other side of endorsing murder, just of misguidedly pursuing policies that make murders more likely. There's a world of difference between this and the idea that your opponents' position is explicitly and fundamentally murderous.


Yes, the argument is toxic. Politics often degenerates into toxic wastelands where no one can talk to each other.

And for better or for worse, "murder" describes the viewpoint of Pro-lifers succinctly. They believe that the fetus is human, that it is an independent being like any other child, and that it is innocent life. And when innocent life is put to death for any reason, it is considered murder.

And yes, I do recognize the opposing viewpoint. That the woman's body is her own body and that she deserves "privacy" to make her own choice. And to deny a woman autonomy over what she does with her body is misogynistic.

So now what? Its a hard debate and a tough subject to talk about, in part because of the toxic political environment. But at this point, I think its best if we just recognized how toxic the arguments are and move forward despite that.
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Re: The Darker Side of the News

Postby Lazar » Fri Mar 25, 2016 8:14 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Pretty much constantly, they do. Name a gun-control advocacy group that hasn't.

I'm not up to date on all the pronouncements of gun control advocacy organizations, but again, I don't think it's a mainstream position to claim that the ownership of guns is inherently murderous. I mean, it's hard to even phrase that position in a comprehensible way, because hardly anyone holds it; there's almost no one who favors the complete non-existence of guns, even if they might only be restricted to the military. My point is that gun control, although it does deal with matters of life and death, simply does not present the same moral binary as abortion. The death penalty may be the only issue that's really comparable, but as I said, even there I think there's more wiggle room.
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