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Everything posted by overtone

  1. I don't have any guns either. So the question between us is which one of us is more responsible for other people shooting children. I think it's you.
  2. CNN and NPR - essentially the entire non-Fox major TV - have treated Clinton very well. And treated Sanders poorly. Meanwhile, there is a large and persistent demonstration in front of CNN headquarters right now by Sanders supporters, attempting to force them to cover Sanders at all - has that demonstration made the news where you live? Has the current demonstration in Washington against the financial industry's influence on the US government made the news? Has the recently reported ongoing failure of most of the major banks (all bigger than they were when they were too big to fail) to meet the Dodd-Frank safety requirements been analyzed with respect to how the policies of Sanders, Clinton, Trump, and Cruz, would approach the problem we have with them? Not only Sanders himself, but all issues likely to benefit his candidacy and agenda, are missing. That's not so and you know it. From the polling of the superdelegates taken before Sanders was a real possibility and then included in the Clinton delegate count, to the original debate schedule, to the sudden appearance of Clinton's stump speech framing in all the major news reporting from DNC influenced sources, the bias has been nothing if not obvious. You can argue that that is a good thing, and appropriate behavior for a major Party, but you can't argue that it's "fair". Getting attention - even some criticism - from the media is not a bad thing, for a political candidate. Scrutiny and publicity are often the same thing. Sanders has had little scrutiny. Or attention. And name recognition alone - familiarity - explains most of his vote gap. Look at his poll numbers before and after he shows up in some place about to have a primary or caucus - that's proof, statistical proof, of the inadequacy of the news coverage of his campaign. His biggest problem in New York even - near his home State, media center of the universe - is that the New York Democratic primary is closed and the deadline for registering was two weeks ago, before Sanders started campaigning in person. He will not get his normal surge in the vote that we see from exposure. We had a situation similar to this in Minnesota years ago, when a college professor named Paul Wellstone ran for Senate. He had been running for months and was polling around 4%, when he blew up at the media: yet another reporter asked him whether he thought he should still be running if he couldn't get more than 4% of the vote, and he pointed out - bluntly - that one of his problems in getting more than 4% of the vote was that the journalists covering the election were not writing anything about him except about the fact that he was only getting 4% of the vote. How much of the already inadequate coverage of Sanders has been about his percentage of the vote? And the thing was, that changed the election in Minnesota. Because the journalists were embarrassed, and they started covering his issues and comparing his programs and policies and quoting his speeches as they did with the respectable candidates. Scrutiny, in other words. And he won. That's the thing about real journalism - you can embarrass it. It's kind of like Popper's criterion for real science, that it can be falsified. You can't embarrass MSNBC or ABC any more. You can't embarrass CNN - although there are some people trying. Shamelessness is Fox's business model.
  3. So far you haven't seen a single post from me claiming that the US did not need better gun control, in the form of State and Federal laws that restrict gun ownership and gun handling significantly more than they are restricted right now. You have seem many directly otherwise. You haven't seen a single post from me claiming all significant gun restrictions would violate the Constitution, or that the Constitution cannot be amended, or that the Constitution is perfect and all-wise and sacrosanct in the first place. You have seen no posts from me even favoring, let alone recommending, handgun ownership (the core and source of America's problems, imho) for male self defense, or anything else actually. You have seen me mock some - not all, but a significant percentage - of the people I meet carrying guns (for example, guys I have seen pack camping in the north woods with 9 millimeter automatics - in case of wolves, bears, etc). You have heard me describe specific, named factions of the American gun culture as crazy, and the consequences as tragic, and the politics of its membership as dysfunctional. I'm a fellow gun control advocate. And you think you are gridlocked with me. Does this suggest anything to you? The other thing you don't understand is that that is a real question. There are reasons people in the US who think themselves competent - including those who are in fact right, are in fact competent - resist so vehemently a governmental check for competency. That's "reasons", not psychiatric symptoms. And a whole lot of people agree that they are pretty good reasons. -> And you have seen some of them. So how is it that you don't "understand"? Oh, I don't give it that much of a pass. It's far from mere posturing.
  4. Doesn't explain the numbers. No, they weren't. Either one. I'm missing the point I've made most frequently in this thread. Right. And so it goes. Is my point driven in yet? Does anyone need an even bigger hammer? Or as posted: " This is damaging, politically. This is - once again - the core of the gridlock problem. It doesn't matter how many people think reliable and universal background checks, trigger locks in family homes, legal standards for responsible ownership and carry, for example, would be a good idea in a better world (It's over 85% of the NRA membership even, last I checked): they aren't going to hand political power over to people who think like that, talk like that, and preen themselves in public on a moral and ethical superiority they nowhere near possess"
  5. Is anyone doing that? Not in the Democratic oriented media. The people who listen to Fox for their news are mostly Republican voters. Really. Was this before or after every single pundit on TV declared that they were completely surprised that Trump was still in the race? That "nobody saw this coming"? That was I believe early March. Who, exactly, is running that as their narrative? Major media, now. The lefty bloggers I follow have been bemoaning their inability to get that obvious point shoehorned into a major pundit's "narrative" since the debate schedule was published - summer of last year. The Democratic base has been "divided" about the prospect of a Hillary Clinton nomination for twenty years or more.
  6. You have demonstrated the gridlock. I can't think of any direct way to break it. Certainly it would require marginalizing everyone who argues in public as the gun control advocates here post on the topic. How would one go about doing that?
  7. It's probable that the earliest "humans" emerged from beings with a fair amount of technology - fire, stone tools, shelter construction, probably crude nets and rudimentary gathering/carrying apparatus - and the social organization to match. It's hard to imagine where else the kind of physiological adaptations that require such a long childhood could have obtained the necessary evolutionary pressure from.
  8. When a Scientific American columnist reviewed "The Bell Curve", he called it the "Quot Score". I favor that term, myself - it's easy to spell (I never know where to put the periods in I.Q.) He also published a graph, like real scientists always do, showing Quot Scores graphed against hat size according to various styles of hat. IIRC the French Beret showed a low Quot Score associated with small berets, rising to a maximum with midsize berets, and decreasing to low with very large berets. The curve for cowboy hats was a horizontal line.
  9. But as you can see, my slow comets onto a smaller Earth - with the water soaking in and swelling the planet - takes care of all those objections. Look at all the water soaked into the rocks under Mt Everest, swelling and pushing it up! Science has discovered it, it's scientific fact. Here's a report about the science: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2878885/Huge-quantities-Earth-s-oldest-water-discovered-deep-underground-supporting-unknown-lifeforms.html
  10. The problem is not mutual exclusion. The problem is that the crazy has gridlocked the gun control option. And if this thread has demonstrated nothing else, it has demonstrated that the gridlock on gun control has not magically let go. Yet.
  11. Wait for the gridlock to erode, and people to forget. Then meet as reasonable folks, and I think it would be fairly easy. I think things would go quite smoothly. Meanwhile, if the problem is kids getting shot, there is a lot we can get done in the realm of better drug laws and enforcement, lead abatement, income inequality, etc etc etc. Any time.
  12. - - - So lessee: instead of abandoning gun control and discussing other and far more likely approaches to reducing gunshot injury in the young, as I suggested, I am bid to repost my earlier suggestions for gun control - that were ignored for fifty pages and then their existence denied - so that we can begin again the endless task. So I do. And one of them is chosen - trigger locks on handguns in homes with children. But the point is made that racial disparity in the stats - particularly the black race, and Minnesota stats, specifically mentioned - seems to indicate too large a role for intention, that assuming as we might racial neutrality in accident, accident can be playing only a very minor role and trigger locks then of only very small benefit. But I pointed out that we have reason to think both accident and "borrowed" use might play a larger role among Minnesota blacks than among other races, due to various cultural factors I have observed and the obvious economics of gun ownership among the black people who are getting shot. So - my argument goes - trigger locks in children's homes have more promise than an initial glance at the racial bias in the injury stats might suggest. And they have the same basic justification that other child-conscious restrictions on exercise of Constitutional rights have, such as on speech (porn) or religion (can't beat the kid for God). And that's the response. {those two quotes} The gun control advocates want that kind of reasoning and agenda to be given power over others. Like I keep saying: gridlocked. The crazy is on both sides, and nothing will help but time. Or as put before: In other words, no, we can't have trigger locks. Why not? Maybe because they wouldn't work, but nobody's looking into that much. Instead, because a lot of people think gun control advocates are irrational, emotional, unreasonable, nannystate authoritarians who can't be trusted with power. Where do you suppose they got that idea? Meanwhile, we can get a lot of the benefit we need, kids not getting shot, without gun control. If we had decent drug laws, for example, how much of the 400% racial disparity - concentrated as it is in the drug law enforcement hot spots among black people - vanishes, and in the right way? If it's only 20%, against all expectations, it would still outweigh the entire possible effect of trigger locks among white people in Minnesota.
  13. Trigger guards that lock would still be a barrier, to the kid who is "borrowing" the gun from a relative etc. But yeah, crime and gang prevention cuts to the root of the problem the guns decorate and symptomize. And we're getting to the first full generation largely free of leaded gas - community adults, maternally, or self exposed. There is, btw, a cultural observation that might apply: when I'm working out of a truck into a household the kids tend to behave according to race - as a general rule white kids stand around cluelessly and have to be moved when they're in the way, yellow kids line up against a wall and whisper to each other, brown kids hide behind handy adult relatives, red kids crowd around but not cluelessly, and black kids run around alertly clear of the work but will be up in the truck playing with stuff behind my back. So I kind of suspect black kids might have more accidents with a household handgun left around, and trigger locks might be a larger benefit in black homes than the stats indicate. Balance that against the likelihood that the guns involved in this stuff are not bought by the household adult for the house in the first place.
  14. In closed primaries among black people, she has dominated. Otherwise, she's breaking even or losing. Those are not Democratic primary voters. Clinton is getting a lot of good press in the MSNBC and related media, where the Democratic primary vote gets their news and Sanders has been oddly shut out. And her name recognition is very high - Sanders still struggles there, especially among black voters. The winning candidates in both Parties are the ones who started with the highest name recognition.
  15. They said in the OP link that 75% of the very young were "accidental" injuries. In the teens - which seem to be majority - the proportion of "accidentals" was much lower, but unspecified. The inverse correlation with prevalence would seem likely, just guessing here, to imply a lower percentage of true accidentals. So would the very large gender and racial skew. By thumbnail calculation, if young black teenage boys with half the prevalence exposure to guns as white boys nevertheless have four times the gunshot injury rate (as per the OP stats), that would work out to eight times the likelihood of them getting shot by accident with a given gun they happen to be near, if accidents are dominating these statistics. They don't seem all that much more clumsy or careless to me, when I meet them. First guess is one should seek another explanation.
  16. It includes attempted murders, gunfight injuries, and suicides, as well as accidents. As per the OP. Low prevalence of guns demographically - inner city black people, most dramatically - is associated with most of the hospital admissions counted. Also, the rates have been dropping for ten years, at the same time that per capita gun prevalence has been rising. (according to the OP link to USA Today). Statistically, then, within the US the lower the prevalence of guns the higher the risk of gun injury, and vice versa. Which leads - in the type of prevalence based argument we have become accustomed to around here - to the fact based and simple and obvious conclusion that we should hand out guns and ammo to inner city black people, to make their lives safer. Unless there's something wrong with that kind of argument.
  17. Optical illusion caused by distance. Reagan looks even smarter - he's farther away. The current Republican Party is not an aberration, not a departure from some former self of competence and dignified responsibility. There isn't a Republican legitimately on the scene any more incapable and ignorant and petty on the take than Sarah Palin or Spiro Agnew, any more clueless than W or Reagan, any more evil than Cheney or Nixon, any more hapless than Romney or Bush Sr. This is the Republican Party we in the loyal opposition have been watching do its thing for forty years and more. Trump's just being unusually blunt and vulgar about it. Plus, he is saying true things about important Republicans and the cooperative press - a quick way to make long enmities. Cruz and Trump are actually, probably, the two smartest Republican Presidential candidates we've seen in quite a while.
  18. Not all four - that number is for background checks and partly for concealed carry. Also, I said I favored required trigger locks for guns available to children, not all privately owned guns. I especially think that handguns available to children - meaning in the same house they are in - should be trigger-locked, and that handguns around children are a special area of more stringent regulation. (much as speech and expression around children are more strictly curbed, and other such rights more restricted). Along the way, I have mentioned required secure storage for guns above a certain number in a house - that number for me was 2 - and spoken favorably of isotope tagging ammunition, and have not mentioned but would favor biometric security for police, security force, and concealed carry weapons. Also a few more such measures (biometric security for ammunition in private homes with children, or for loading as well as firing a handgun, say) seem worth looking into. And so forth. A long list. But I think John's actual query was about the other approaches I mentioned for reducing the frequency of children being shot, not the gun control measures I mentioned favoring. A few can be compiled from my posts alone (others have also contributed), if anyone were interested (nobody was at the time of posting), explicit in posts 223, 332,458, 476, 480, 657, 699, and 888; suggested in a few others. I believe the moderator trashed post in the 70s alluded to something relevant along those lines as well, which would be the earliest, but memory fails.
  19. In my opinion, well illustrated and fully supported with fifty pages of example here, there can't be progress on it, partly and significantly because of the history and nature of "your" (the generalized "you") manner of "trying". You have to abandon your manner of trying, and give the issue enough time for people to forget your trying. Then you can try again, hopefully in some different way. Meanwhile, we have a serious issue in the US with lots of children being shot, both by accident and on purpose. Granted the actual hazard is quite small, and most people can render it negligible for their own children by taking a couple of usually easy precautions, but the injury is tragic enough, and the wholly unnecessary frequency of it great enough, and the occasional particular vulnerability of some people serious enough, that it has become a proper matter for governmental attention. So while waiting for the gun control gridlock to erode and fade under human forgetfulness, you have much to address in a thread devoted to gunshot injury to children. And the good news is, these other factors appear to be considerably more promising in their potential effects as well as their political feasibility. So it's a win/win. If you are primarily worried about the kids getting shot, anyway.
  20. The effect required inert particles of equivalent size and composition between the spinners. In a film of clear water with no other similar non-spinning particles, there was no effect, it says.
  21. In this case, the event - pregnancy and nonpregnancy while taking birth control pills - has happened, many times, in the relevant population. As long as I'm idly shooting off my mouth: I have a few sisters, and a girlfriend or two in my history, and this from that: I'd worry more about the psychological aspect of birth control pills than the probably nonexistent breast cancer and cardiovascular disease risk (especially given the lower risk of other stuff, such as ovarian cancer and, y'know, pregnancy). They're hormones: they affect mood and response, and in this case they affect stuff directly involved in romantic pair bonding. Also: Studies, as well as experience, show that the immediate prospect of parenthood, including companionship with a beloved and pregnant woman, alters the man's hormones as well: you will find yourself in a much different state of mind than you now project, if the feared disaster of pregnancy befalls you. Take care of business, and then don't worry about it - unless what you actually fear is the prospect of being stuck with this woman for years, in which case you guys need to talk. Just my opinion. YMMV.
  22. Taking this paragraph one phrase at a time, numbered at the end from the last number or summary, as an exercise: " Supposing there was no intelligence behind the universe, no creative mind 1. In that case, nobody designed my brain for the purpose of thinking2,3. It is merely that when the atoms inside my skull happen, for physical or chemical reasons, to arrange themselves in a certain way, this gives me, as a by-product, the sensation I call thought 4,5. But, if so, how can I trust my own thinking to be true?6 It’s like upsetting a milk jug and hoping that the way it splashes itself will give you a map of London7. But if I can’t trust my own thinking, of course I can’t trust the arguments leading to Atheism8, and therefore have no reason to be an Atheist, or anything else9. Unless I believe in God, I cannot believe in thought10: so I can never use thought to disbelieve in God11.” 1) It's "were", not "was", normally. It's subjunctive, normally, and Lewis chose deliberately. This is not a trivial comment: Lewis was a Oxford scholar, literate in Greek and Latin, a poet and literary critic, and he most definitely knew what the subjunctive tense was in English. That marks his purposeful deception throughout - if not of us, then of himself: he's not actually entertaining the possibility, not setting it beside an equivalently uncertain alternative. Also, the slide from "intelligence" to "creative mind" begs serious questions of establishment, guidance, and control, vs spontaneous and presumably then unrestricted invention. That is a great narrowing of the thesis, here, and it's critical to Lewis's later reasoning. So he's avoiding major issues, right off. 2) This is invalid. There could as easily have been an intelligence engaged in designing Lewis's brain long after the Creation, as one being involved in the Creation itself - the notion that an intelligence cannot emerge later, from the universe rather than before it, is exactly what Lewis is arguing. He is assuming the consequent. Lewis is then going to reason from his brain's being designed to the existence of a designer of everything else from the beginning: bad logic from the start, going to get worse. 3) It doesn't work overall, either. An assumed designer of the Creation does not establish a designer of Lewis's mind, because Lewis's mind was not present at the creation. It came along later. 4) He overlooks the key fact of levels of organization, there - no structure of the universe exists between atoms and thought, in this description. This leads him directly to the description of thought as a "sensation", which misleads him to describe it as a byproduct of atom arrangements - something outside of, and not involved in, the arranging of atoms. 5) which leads to him to describe the arranging of the atoms as for "physical or chemical reasons", something he might have been more wary of if he had recognized the complexity of the structuring factors - and should have been, because it led to a bizarrely false analogy in 7. Meanwhile: 6) He can't "trust" his thinking to be true (in the Oxford logician's sense, remember) under any circumstances for many reasons, but the notion that the physical and chemical reasons - guided as they are by the inescapable properties of the universe - are less reliable than the whims of some assumed designer, is an especially odd one. And when he explains, it gets odder: 7) apparently he conceives of the atoms of his brain as a liquid that, bereft of the guidance of an external designer, would slosh randomly. This is a far more intimate and actively interfering deity than he started with, and it is made necessary by his overlooking the structuring of the universe between atoms and thoughts - he has overlooked his brain, as well as his mind. 8) including this one, so he can come to no conclusion whatsoever. 9) Another conclusion, impossible to reach under his own assumptions etc. He is dodging the actual logical conclusion of his bogus argument, which is that an argument that led him to the rejection of atheism has also led to the rejection of thought itself, and the invalidation of the argument made. Paradox, it's called: a form of reductio ad absurdum, which is supposed to lead to rejection of one or more of the premises. 10) Unpacking that, we have this: Unless he believes a single Deity created the universe, then created his brain, and then continued to mind the atoms in his brain to keep them from sloshing randomly like milk, he cannot rely on his thoughts being other than noise and illusion. Personally, if I believed that some outside entity with its own motives was creating every thought in my head, I would rely on them less rather than more, but that's a judgment call. Maybe it's a comfort to him. 11) This is a bit irritating, because it's an endemic strain of thought shot through all of Christendom (and Islam): thinking itself is dangerous, bad, and liable to corrupt a person. He's not saying he can't physically use thought to disbelieve in God, he's saying that any thinking that leads to doubt of God is flawed thinking - and it's a very short step from that to discouraging thought altogether, in any actual community with an actual specific God involved.
  23. The commonly encountered minimum number for a successful breeding population of humans to have a good chance of maintaining itself indefinitely is about 500. The generally accepted number for the maximum size a human population can reach and still maintain a reputation based and consensus system of decision-making is about 150 (that's the number a mammal with a human sized brain can track socially). So realistically, with a safety margin, we're talking about dozens of groups of people of 20 to 100 each, numbering in the thousands all together, encountering each other frequently and routinely under standard circumstances they have set up in advance. Traveling to these encounters, even, at certain times. It's a bit misleading to think of pre-agricultural humans as having no fixed residences. Most were nomadic to a degree (exceptions like the Pacific Northwest salmon fishers are much studied, and they all appear to be coastal populations with resources that came to them by water - but that may have been how the entire species got started, so we can't assume they are "atypical" somehow in an evolutionary sense) but the traveling was often between fairly fixed and traditional locations in a well-marked and bounded home range. They probably had winter camps and summer camps, rainy season camps and dry season camps, etc.
  24. Inow's position is that nobody is talking about taking away all the guns. They aren't even talking about taking away any of the guns. Except from criminals. That even mentioning that threat is a sign of the irrational paranoia of the gun nuts.
  25. There's still debate about even some of the major features. Multiple exchanges with Africa, in and out rather than simply outmigration, seem to be gaining in importance, for example.
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