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Comment: Re:The Legit Bay (Score 1) 79

by Ginger Unicorn (#48646247) Attached to: Anyone Can Now Launch Their Own Version of the Pirate Bay

It's still not theft. If you were stealing someone's creative work you would be going to where they keep their source materials and removing them, depriving the creator of access to their work. What you are doing when you pirate something is experiencing the work without remunerating the creator.

These are two separate and distinct acts, with entirely different consequences. Not giving something to someone is not the same as taking something away from someone. Now you can argue that both situations are equally reprehensible if that is your judgement. But they are not synonymous. There are subtle but important differences that underpin the whole argument, and coherent discussion can't proceed unless you appreciate this difference.

Precise use of language is important, as it reduces muddled thinking and enables a clear argument to be made. Banging out the word "theft" at every opportunity as an appeal to your own emotional response to the injustice you perceive is preventing you from understanding the other side of the argument.

Comment: inneffectual Whack-a-mole (Score 2) 80

by Ginger Unicorn (#48473095) Attached to: BT Blocking Private Torrent Sites?
Presumably they aren't allowed to block because that is always up, and just gives you the working pirate bay proxy du jour. I'm not sure what the significance or notability of them blocking a members only torrent site is though. Irrespective of what access people have to it, it's still a torrent site. Or am I missing something?

Comment: Re:Alternative? (Score 1) 377

by Ginger Unicorn (#48376677) Attached to: How 4H Is Helping Big Ag Take Over Africa
You expressed your point by saying " the same way that homeopathy can cure major illnesses. i.e. it may be true". All anyone gets from reading that sentence is that you're saying Homeopathy hasn't been thoroughly discredited as a scientific concept, which it clearly has. It "may be true" in the same sense that I may spontaneously teleport to mars due to quantum chance.

Comment: Re:Its prison (Score 1) 356

by Ginger Unicorn (#48351371) Attached to: Pirate Bay Co-Founder Peter Sunde Is a Free Man Again
I agree, pills don't help unless you have some kind of identifiable chemical deficiency. But i'd argue that anger is pretty much the fuel of depression. You can't be happy until you let go of anger. Sure you can feel some visceral satisfaction in directing your anger at other people, and it's much less painful than repressing it or turning it on yourself, but in the end, you're still angry, not happy.

Comment: Re:Its prison (Score 1) 356

by Ginger Unicorn (#48351267) Attached to: Pirate Bay Co-Founder Peter Sunde Is a Free Man Again

We can set aside the distinction between clinical/nonclinical depression, because for both of those cases you're implying that somehow the sufferer deserves the condition they have presumably due to what you regard as neglect, cowardice or laziness, and they should be given no consideration as requiring any kind of outside assistance or special care. They are just "sad" and should get over themselves. For both clinical and non-clinical depression that is a gross misunderstanding of the situation.

It's about you, and how you perceive the world.

And unfortunately, a lot of the time that perception is sufficiently distorted that the sufferer has no hope of correcting it without therapy and outside assistance. It's not like they can just "man up" one day and abracadabra, they're cured, because after all, they were just choosing to feel sorry for themselves all along. The emotional pain inflicted by depression exerts tremendous influence on what the sufferer is able to believe.

It's not some mystical force.

And neither is human willpower. The concious decision making part of the mind is heavily manipulated by the emotional part, and often outright controlled by it.

Comment: Re:Why at a place of learning? (Score 1) 1007

by Ginger Unicorn (#48261759) Attached to: Creationism Conference at Michigan State University Stirs Unease

There's a couple of hundred prophesies about Jesus, some obvious, some you'd never realise without it being pointed out.

If they were truly prophecies about Jesus, passed down from God, you would think it would be a matter of sufficient importance that he would ensure the prophecies were unambiguous and clear. In fact, being from God, you would expect them to stand out as a slamdunk of miraculous and inexplicable prescience.

Instead you have something that looks exactly like the handwaving after-the-fact postdiction of the likes of astrology and the quatrains of Nostradamus.

Why couldn't God do better than those deluded fallible humans? Because the bible was written by deluded fallible humans, and the God described in it is their invention. It's just so clear and obvious to someone without a pre-determined conclusion. Don't wheel in a load of special pleading and rationalisation. Don't load yourself up with all this cognitive dissonance.

We wouldn't have those expectations (omnipotent, omnisicient, loving) without the Bible telling us that's what God it like.

That's putting the cart before the horse. The only source material you have to base any of your expectations on is the Bible. If you're going to be reasonable and rational, you have to be able to trust what the Bible says. If the bible is demonstrably unreliable you just can't do that.

It goes double if the bible purports to be an expression of omniscience and infallible integrity. Any demonstrated shakiness or holes in the story immediately puts the lie to the entire premise. Given it's claims, the bible needs to be an awe-inspiring paragon of resplendent perfection. But it's not be any stretch. It's a mostly tedious and sketchy hodge podge of confusing inconsistent mythology, patched together over hundreds of years in several acts of historical revisionism aimed at wedding different religions together to maintain social stability.

God doesn't conform to our expectations or predetermined conclusions.

That shouldn't be used as a critical thinking ejector seat. Once you do that you're lost forever in the story, because then absolutely no amount of logical inconsistency, hypocrisy and self-contradiction can slap you in the face hard enough to wake you up to the fact that all of it is quite obviously the ad-hoc conglomeration of the imagination of several disparate groups of humans.

Say that I wrote a book about how I was the creator of the universe and I rebuffed any questioning of the veracity of claims by saying that it all makes sense, it's just that whenever it seems like doesn't, it means people aren't capable of understanding it, but that you should just trust me anyway. Given that situation, if you applied the level of rigour to which you hold the bible, you would be just a justified in believing my half-assed story as you would the bible.

Comment: Re:Why at a place of learning? (Score 1) 1007

The "all the rules change when Jesus shows up" rationalisation does nothing to explain away why any of these ludicrous and ethically reprehensible rules were applied initially. It doesn't matter how you grease the cognitive dissonance. If you look at the bible with an open mind, asking the question "is this book the ineffable word of an omnipotent, omniscient and all loving supreme being?" you see that it's clearly not. Looked at with a genuinely neutral, open-mind and rational pair of eyes, it is so obviously an ad-hoc conglomeration of often unrelated and incompatible myths and folklore, about which there is fairly decent explanation of the history of where all the bits came from and how they were brought together.

If you look at the bible with a predetermined conclusion that is must be the word of that supreme being, and ask the question "what laundry list of post-hoc explanations do I need to memorise so that I can keep squinting at it in just the right way that I can convince myself none of the glaring inconsistencies are there?" you can, along with absolutely any other fantasy, keep yourself trapped in the delusion for as long as you like.

Comment: Re: Missing option (Score 1) 219

by Ginger Unicorn (#48167143) Attached to: When will the first successful manned Mars mission happen?

The only objective meaning of life is to procreate and continue one's own genetic legacy.

I would argue that that's not a meaning, but just a necessity of the process.

It seems to me that meaning is always subjective. It's an arbitrary value judgement based on the factors that feel significant to the person ascribing it. You could argue that the closest you could get to an objective meaning is if you got every conscious entity in the universe to all agree to something, but I don't think even that would be technically true.

If there were no conscious entities in the universe, there would be no meaning, because there would be no one for anything to mean anything to. Unconscious life could carry on indefinitely in a meaningless universe.

Comment: Re:It's always been a myth (Score 1) 239

by Ginger Unicorn (#48148673) Attached to: How Women Became Gamers Through D&D

This depends on what people mean when they says "gamers". Speaking as someone who owns a shop that sells Tabletop games like Warhammer, Magic the Gathering, D&D etc, men outnumber women about 20 to 1. But then the reverse is probably true for stuff like Candy Crush on facebook. But lumping all that stuff together under the umbrella term "gamers" paints a gigantic gloss stroke over some significant differences. There is a big divide between the stuff that involves "being a geek" and stuff like facebook games that don't. Anything that involves "being a geek" has a drastic preponderance of men. Obsessing over made-up fantasy worlds, and taking fanciful nonsense incredibly seriously, aggressively competing to establish prowess. That is apparently (whether it be cultural or not) mostly male behaviour.

I have no axe to grind, I would make twice as much money if more women were into this stuff too. But the reality is, in this large region under the umbrella group of "gamers" barely any of them are. I don't think it makes sense to lump all kinds of gaming together, as it is far from homogeneous.

"'Tis true, 'tis pity, and pity 'tis 'tis true." -- Poloniouius, in Willie the Shake's _Hamlet, Prince of Darkness_