Author Topic: Forum Best Bits  (Read 56265 times)

Trentvoyager

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5886
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #275 on: November 12, 2019, 02:39:50 PM »
Christine on the election thread. She doesnt post often but when she does. Oh boy.

When was Julie Bindell elected spokesperson for all women and the final arbiter of who is a feminist?  The aim should be to remove any economic pressures that make some women feel that such employment is their best realistic option.  Then we could be more confident that any women involved were there of their own choice.  I heard a couple of dancers being interviewed several months ago on, I think, PM.  They were furious at the "feminists" who had filmed them in their club and published the films on-line.  And I don't think the possibility of women being put into riskier situations by the closure of the club can be so easily dismissed.  

That she refers to Corbyn's candidate and not the Labour candidate is telling.  It's beyond me why some who claim to care about the people who live in this country happily play into the narratives promulgated by a corrupt, disreputable establishment.  Corbyn's awful, isn't he, perhaps we should vote for the lying sociopath party who've been asset-stripping the country for the last 9 years.  What a conundrum.

Re wreath-gate - I saw a comment on this suggesting it was a coded cry for help from the BBC.  It was so obvious it's beyond belief whoever edited that footage didn't realise it would be spotted.  Though I suppose it did avoid the BBC actually showing Johnson, who looked like he'd slept in a hedge, messing up his not-very-complicated role at the cenotaph. 
Bigotry wrapped in prayer is still bigotry.

Hercules Grytpype-Thynne

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4215
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #276 on: November 16, 2019, 10:36:21 AM »
From Mr Underpants:

The gods of most of the ancient world were psychos, and not many people these days get their knickers in a twist over the evils of Quetzalcoatl, Set or Jupiter.  The only reason we know about them is because scribes and prophets had certain ideas in their heads about what these gods were supposed to be like, and wrote about them on papyrus, parchment and stone. I see no reason to get so steamed up about the supposed deities behind these stories as if they actually existed (which is what LR does all the time about Yahweh - I thought you knew better). The thing about the various ideas about God in the Old Testament is that they differ. The Gods of the first two chapters of Genesis are completely different, for goodness sake: in chapter 1, he is exalted, remote and instantly creative. In chapter 2, he's a bumbling old buffer who wanders around in a garden and can't even find the humans he's formed when they hide from him.
I challenge you to argue that what Ecclesiastes or Micah wrote about God is compatible with what the authors of the Noah stories (there are of course two authors of that episode) wrote, or what the authors of Exodus wrote. God in the Bible does seem to get rather more civilised on occasion - I don't know whether this applies to the other deities of the ancient world (though doubtless their characteristics vary a bit too, depending on who is writing about them, and at which period in history).

What is of course worth getting steamed up about is very much the real subject of this thread (trying to get back on topic here :)  ). That is to say, those people who do believe that there is one 'god of the bible' and that he is good and just, and that any text wrenched out of context from any part of the Bible can be used to legitimise their vile and perverted attitudes and behaviour.
When we are born, we cry that we are come to this great stage of fools.
King Lear, Act 4 Scene 6

Gordon

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 15115
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #277 on: November 21, 2019, 11:21:08 AM »
An inventive parody by NS to mark 2,000,000 views of Searching for God.

Quote
A wee tribute to this thread hitting 2 Million Views - take that Dr Evil! With appearances from the mad mods, we have 'Alan Burns in Wonderland'


There was a table set out under a tree in front of the house, and Nearly Sane and Gordon were having tea at it: Trentvoyager was sitting between them, fast asleep, and the other two were using him as a cushion, resting their elbows on him, and  talking over his head. `Very uncomfortable for Trentvoyager,’ thought Alan Burns `only, as he's asleep, I suppose he doesn’t mind.’

The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it: `Two million views! Two million views’ they cried out when they saw Alan Burns coming. `There’s PLENTY of views’ said Alan Burns happily hoping to have converted someone, and he sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.

`Have some wine,’ Nearly Sane said in an encouraging tone.

Alan Burns looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea. `I don’t see any wine, I see  the blood of our Lord,’ he remarked.

`There isn’t any,’ said Nearly Sane.

`Then it wasn’t very civil of you to offer it,’ said Alan Burn unctuously.

`It wasn’t very civil of you to post without reading other posts’ said Nearly Sane.

`I didn’t know it was YOUR thread,’ said Alan Burns; `it’s posted on by a great many more than three.’

`Your post wants modding,’ said Gordon. He had been looking at Alan Burns for some time with great curiosity, and this was his first speech.

`You should learn not to make personal remarks,’ Alan Burns said oleaginously; `it’s very rude.’

Gordon opened his eyes very wide on hearing this; but all he SAID was, `Why is Searching for God like a writing-desk?’

`Come, we shall have some fun now!’ thought Alan Burns `I’m glad they’ve begun asking riddles.–I am a member of Mensa,’ he added aloud.

`Do you mean that you think you can find out the answer to it?’ said Nearly Sane.

`Exactly so,’ said Alan Burns.

`Then you should say what you mean,’ Nearly Sane went on.

`I do,’ Alan Burns fallaciously replied; `at least–at least I mean what I say–that’s the same thing, you know.’

`Not the same thing a bit!’ said Gordon. `You might just as well say that “I see what I eat” is the same thing as “I eat what I see”!’

`You might just as well say,’ added Nearly Sane, `that “I like what I get” is the same thing as “I get what I like”!’

`You might just as well say,’ added Trentvoyager, who seemed to be talking in his sleep, `that “I breathe when I sleep” is the same thing as “I sleep when I breathe”!’

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #278 on: November 26, 2019, 04:17:06 PM »
From the too infrequent Samuel

"I'll make my report as if I told a story, for I was taught as a child on my homeworld that Truth is a matter of the imagination. The soundest fact may fail or prevail in the style of its telling" - Ursula Le Guin, The Left Hand of Darkness

I think there some things to separate out here. (hello btw. Yes, I still float by now and then)

I think we all agree that it is undeniable that story-telling (and I would expand that to all artistic practice) is about communication of ideas. Sometimes those ideas are facts, other times they are feelings, perceptions etc. etc. Whatever it is about, a good story can be a phenomenally effective method of communication.

Crucially though, it must be understood that stories are always told with intent - to entertain, to move, frighten, to inform, to unite or divide. Stories are never neutral.

So what is the intent of religious stories? Individually they are very varied on that score, and some are now irrelevent just as with others it is hard to imagine they will ever loose their relevance. However, they all contribute to a coherent purpose which I think is characterised by an intent to describe, in detail, a particular cultural identity. Religious stories explore the rules and restrictions that form the bounds of that identity, their origins, justifications and beneftis, and of the course the consequences of straying away from them. Perhaps some religious stories happen to also communicate something universal about basic humanity - we can hardly expect them not to... we are not actually that different from each other beyond our cultrually constructed differences. Such universality arguably occurs by accident in pursuit of the true goal of developing the identity of the group.

So, for me, its not the right question when we ask 'are religious stories valuable'. Its too open. Really, the quesiton should be 'what role to religious stories play today?'

Because the wonderful thing about stories is that they are living things that can be picked up and re-told with a new intent. Sometimes this can be a very sinister intent, but it can be a simple evolution or adaptation of an inherited story to maintain its relevence.

For example, we could relate the christian story as a way to explain our cultural heritage to a migrant from a non-christian country. Does that religious story have value? of course it does.

We could tell the story of genesis in order to communicate something about the peple who wrote it. Does that have value, of course it does.

What value do the stories about the norse gods have today? They can be bloody entertaining, in my opinion, and interesting as a means to understand a cultural practice almost entirely consigned to the past and that yet echoes into the modern world.

When it comes to the stories from living religions, if nothing else they are an imensiely valuable window into the identity of the people who practice that religion. Whether thay have any additional value outside of their own context, their own original intent... that is entirely up to people who care to listen to them, take them and re-tell them with fresh purpose.

Do religious stories have value? they do if we say so. And like all stories, great care should be taken over how we use them.


Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #279 on: November 29, 2019, 08:34:09 AM »
From Littleroses on the Unconditional Surrender thread - just so to the point

Any bloke who kissed me without my permission would have my foot connecting with their nether regions.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #280 on: November 29, 2019, 06:33:22 PM »
Lovely post on Pre Raphaelite Art from SusanDoris

Today I went to one of the Touch Tour mornings at Southampton Museum and Art Gallery. It was most interesting. The subject was the Pre-Raphaelites. I knew there was an aspect of Art called pre-Raphaelite, but I have never tried to find out more. I have now gained  a basic outline understanding   of how the name came about and why they chose the subjects they did. 

TheGallery has a collection of sketches by Sir Edward Coley Burne depicting the stories of Perseus but what we were examining were some sculptures made in the mid-nineteenth century , two of which I particularly liked. One is of Edward I on horsebackand the other of Dante. Both are bronze and both have intricate detail of, in the first case, clothing and armour, bridle, saddle , horse's mane etc, and, in the case of the latter, details of a pen of some sort held in one hand and a scroll held by the other hand. 

It is a pity more blind and partially-sighted  people within travelling distance of the Gallery do not take advantage of these excellent sessions, run by a very knowledgeable, and absolutely delightful, member of the Gallery staff.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #281 on: November 29, 2019, 06:35:20 PM »
And from Robbie, some justified well-expressed anger


Fecking lunacy is an understatement. I'm not a medic but I know it isn't possible to implant a foetus removed from a fallopian tube into a uterus. It wouldn't work, wouldn't live! Neither would it live if it stayed in the tube, which would perforate and probably cause the death of the host woman. It's heartbreaking enough for a mother to have an ectopic without going through a pointless procedure like that.

Is this all down to the 'teachings' of the orang utan inhabiting the White House? I despair not just of him but those ignorami (sic) who support him - with apologies to orang utans.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #282 on: December 05, 2019, 11:52:35 AM »
From ekim on the Christmas 2019 thread

I don't single out any particular day to celebrate.  I try to celebrate every day, as it might be my last.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #283 on: December 10, 2019, 09:04:47 PM »
From Gabriella on the Trans thread




Sort of - I don't actually think all men and trans women are dangerous but I don't know which ones are and which ones aren't. And if there was a justification for single-sex facilities previously (we as a society did not decide some men were prevented from entering women's facilities while others were allowed), I don't see how self-identifying as a woman suddenly removes that justification for barring someone. The person self-identifying could retain all the biological characteristics that justified single sex facilities in the first place regardless of what is going on in their heads.

I think what is going on in that person's head about one aspect of themselves doesn't necessarily cancel all the other aspects that goes with their biology and which would ordinarily preclude them from a single-sex facility. It may or it may not but a blanket rule ignoring the risks to women seems misogynistic. I don't see the justification for prioritising the risks to the self-identifier (biological males) over the risks to biological females.

On a practical note - washing your period blood from your clothes in a bathroom is a reality for some women and they really do not need even benign self-identifying men walking in. If you have polycystic ovaries it can cause periods to be irregular and really, really heavy and painful. I remember helping someone at work in the bathroom who had been wearing 2 thick maternity pads in her knickers - the type you wear after childbirth to stem the heavy blood flow that occurs for about a week after delivery - and despite this the sudden gush of menstrual blood she experienced meant it soaked through the pads, soaked through her knickers, soaked through her black trousers and was all over her chair. She eventually had surgery to remove some of the cysts, which helped reduce the symptoms.

Self-identifying men claiming they know what it feels like to be a woman because they want to wear a dress is a not very funny joke. How many of them know what a gush of blood from their vagina feels like, and for those of us who don't have polycystic ovaries it is still an uncomfortable moment of stressing that only another menstruating woman could relate to. And you have to deal with this from puberty - every month for years and years. A dress and liking pink doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of what being a woman means and that trans women think it does just demonstrates how clueless they are. The trans women cannot relate to these defining moments and the thoughts and emotions that run through your head as you navigate this and similar issues, any more than I can relate to what it feels like to be a trans woman fantasising about their version of womanhood.  But I could respect their feelings enough to not disagree with the projections of their minds in most situations, but I think we should each form our own groups and have our own facilities while there is self-identification and a safety or embarrassment issue. 
Yes true - perception based on not being able to tell the criminals from the benign - whether that is men, men pretending to be trans women, or actual trans women who retain biologically male physiology.
I guess yes - based on my story above. I have been ok using gender-neutral toilets even though I feel wary when I come out of the toilet and there is a man at the sink. But that's because I don't have polycystic ovaries and haven't had any adverse experiences from a yob making sexist comments in the toilet ..yet. I would always accompany my daughter to a gender neutral toilet because while hopefully I would go to the extent of ripping a guy's throat out with my teeth if I had to in order to stop him sexually assaulting me, I suspect if she got attacked she would freeze if she was on her own.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #284 on: December 16, 2019, 05:53:38 PM »
From jeremyp as regards the Bronze Age myths/goat herders trope


Can we just dispel this... myth?

The earliest parts of the Bible were probably not written before the beginning of the 1st millennium BCE. It's unlikely that any of it was written before the start of the Iron Age in the Middle East. Some of the stories may have their origins in earlier times, but as written in the Bible, they are definitely iron age myths.

The writers weren't ignorant goat herders either.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #285 on: December 25, 2019, 12:32:47 PM »
Lovely post from Robbie


Thank you Gordon and all the others who've wished us to have a happy Christmas.

I thought I'd check in while I have a bit of time, everything is under control here (at the moment :-).

Fairly low key this year, just me, husband, uncle and aunt and youngest daughter who arrived late last night, for main meal; elder married (& pregnant) daughter is coming 6ish with husband. They were at party last night at his parents and staying for lunch today (we were invited to party but really couldn't manage it this year, we do see them & they came to us a couple of weeks ago for a small gathering). My in laws went to Sussex a couple of days ago to my sister-in-law and her husband and family, their grandson(our oldest nephew) picked them up and drove them down - we miss them but we are going there sometime over next weekend and will spend new year with them, exchanging our Christmas presents, after which we'll bring in laws back. My sister and family came round earlier, they're going to Scotland to his family for Hogmanay.

Would you believe I haven't opened any of my presents yet :-).  We'll eat about 2-2.30pm and I'll devour my gifts after that. I know what some of them are (Charlie's gifts to me which I chose), but it will still be fun opening & there'll be some surprises.

There are sobering thoughts that we all have about the 'festive season'; it's not festive for everyone - I see plenty of hardship in my job - still we mustn't allow such thoughts to spoil things for us. As many say, "It is what it is" & most of us do what we can for others without being patronising.

I've gone on a bit, nobody has to read, but Imay not be back later, I really hope everyone has a happy time. It will soon be over and everything back to 'normal'. Many shops open tomorrow (not Waitrose so I'm told)! I won't be going, can't stand shopping at best of times but useful to know somewhere will be able to sell a pint of milk and bread if anyone needs. Years ago when kids were young I remember buying batteries at a corner shop on Christmas day.

Joyeux Noel to smashing people I've met online on R&E, really enjoy posting here even tho' I don't have all that much to say.

Trentvoyager

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5886
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #286 on: December 29, 2019, 08:08:13 PM »
HH pretty much expressing my views, but more eloquently and succinctly than I ever could:

The parliamentary model used at Westminster is probably about 200 years old. It functions because the FPTP model encourages just two blocs of interest in the House of Commons - Her Majesty's Government and Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition. The Oppositions job is merely to oppose. Because the election system practically eliminates other varying views we end up with a system that is practically totalitarian - except that every five years the opportunity is given for the other side to play dictator for a while.

Surely, the rational way for a modern state to be governed is by a representative assembly trying to achieve objectives by argument and co-operation - not by steamrolling over a single impotent opposing voice. Let us have a new Parliament building which doesn't try to imitate medieval church choir stalls and fill it by using a voting system which permits a variety of voices to be heard and decisions to be obtained by consensus.

And as for a "parliament which simply ceased to function properly" - when did we ever have one of those?
Bigotry wrapped in prayer is still bigotry.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #287 on: February 27, 2020, 02:42:19 PM »
From Gordon on SfG - I like the simplicity here

Alan

Let us pretend I am in your kitchen and we are discussing nuts.

I agree that I like nuts (and I do) and that I'd like to eat some right now, so you decide to give me a choice of 4 varieties of nut, each of which I say I like and would be happy to eat. You place some of each variety in separate dishes - but you add one condition; that I must select and eat some nuts from only one of the 4 available dishes.

So, what do you think might determine my choice of nut since I like them all and I'm hungry, so I'm going to make a choice

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #288 on: March 13, 2020, 07:25:49 AM »

From torridon in SfG

Out of the two, 'bubbling up' is closer to the truth.  The notion of some sort of top down thought-chooser surveying his portfolio of thoughts deciding which one to think next makes no sense. Minds don't work like that.

Think of the way storm systems arise out of background weather as an analogy. Weather is a chaotic system, always moving, and a storm system, like Ciara or Dennis that we had in February may have begun as a tiny perturbation, perhaps the flapping of a butterfly's wings in the Sahara to quote the cliche, and that develops over time into a significant phenomenon with a particular identity, such that we can talk about its strength, position, speed, direction, persistence, and so these phenomena become sufficiently distinct from the background weather as to merit naming.

Our thoughts are a bit like that; our minds may not be chaotic in quite the same manner as weather, but they are a venue of incessant activity.  Even when we are fast asleep, there are still millions of neural interactions happening every second. What occurs as a 'conscious' thought may have had a tiny beginning in the maelstrom of neural activity, but then which gathered momentum and particular character until it emerged into conscious mind as a distinct mental phenomenon of which 'we' are aware.  Like named storms, all our thoughts have origins.

Trentvoyager

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 5886
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #289 on: March 25, 2020, 11:49:52 AM »
Nearly Sane:

Quote from: Spud on Today at 11:30:53 AM
Swearing just means what we are saying isn't true, so we need some way of emphasizing it to make people believe it.


Swearing doesn't fucking mean that.
Bigotry wrapped in prayer is still bigotry.

Nearly Sane

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 36559
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #290 on: March 26, 2020, 12:30:43 PM »

From bhs, a crossword clue


“Corona virus mutates to consume other animals (11)” maybe?

SusanDoris

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6727
Re: Forum Best Bits
« Reply #291 on: March 27, 2020, 07:27:32 AM »
From bhs, a crossword clue


“Corona virus mutates to consume other animals (11)” maybe?
And justifiably quoted here!!
The Most Honourable Sister of Titular Indecision.