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Gender: Female
Hometown: Las Vegas, Nevada
Home country: United Corporate States of the US
Current location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Member since: Thu Jun 24, 2004, 11:32 AM
Number of posts: 12,538

About Me

Hairy, scary, pro-abortion, 'rad fem', doing my best to piss off the "religious" right and MRAs everywhere.

Journal Archives

Thank you for your help! (edited w/answer; Gish Gallop)

Gish Gallop

The Gish Gallop, named after creationist Duane Gish, is the debating technique of drowning the opponent in such a torrent of half-truths, lies, and straw-man arguments that the opponent cannot possibly answer every falsehood in real time. The term was coined by Eugenie Scott of the National Center for Science Education. Sam Harris describes the technique as "starting 10 fires in 10 minutes."

The formal debating term for this is spreading. It arose as a way to throw as much rubbish into five minutes as possible. In response, some debate judges now limit number of arguments as well as time. However, in places where debating judges aren't there to call bullshit on the practice (like the Internet) such techniques are remarkably common.


Another piece I found at the RationalWiki link is:

Argumentum ad tl;dr

A related distraction technique, familiar to readers of A Storehouse of Knowledge, involves swamping an opponent in long-winded screeds of text to artificially inflate the appearance of depth and quality of information presented. Quite often, the actual content of several paragraphs can be summed up in a sentence. While the Gish Gallop floods an opponent with many, but relatively short points, argumentum ad tl;dr flings text walls so massive and impenetrable that even Victor Hugo would blush. Both tactics, however, have exactly the same purpose: to bury and obfuscate the core points that need to be discussed under a quantity of superfluous information. A user might well think that these techniques show that they know what they're talking about, but in the end they act simply as distractions. Note that both are different (but not mutually exclusive) from argumentum ad nauseam, which bolsters the apparent credibility of the argument simply by repeating the same thing over and over and over and over again.

For example, Jason Lisle's blog posts and "research paper" about the anisotropic synchrony convention prattle on endlessly about relativistic physics, hiding the fact that his fundamental assumptions were, to say the least, a little far-fetched. Similarly, engineer Dewey Larson has written numerous books on his theories about matter, going on for pages and pages about the need for critical thinking and letting evidence fit hypotheses, when what he actually proposes in these weighty self-published tomes can be summed up in one sentence.

That also looks very familiar. "Scholars" from aei, heritage foundation, and various other r/w "think tanks," publish many articles using that same form.

--------------My original OP/request for help------------------

Subject line: Help finding a post from the past few days, please.

I'm pretty sure it was posted in the last few days. It was not in an OP but was a reply in a thread.

There is a name for the tactic of rapidly (?) stating lie after lie after lie, twisting facts into lies and calling it "truth," thereby making it impossible to refute each and every lie. I'm sorry I don't remember the exact description.

Someone posted the name of that tactic.

If you were that person or know of that post, please provide a link. If you know the name of that type of "debate tactic," please provide that.

Thank you.

Pioneer Fund: "subsidizing race science and eugenics research"

I tripped over the pioneer fund a few months ago as I was researching the white supremacist groups in the US. I'm dinking around the SPLC* website today and I came across this article.

There are very good reasons why I note sources and authors and I prefer original sources for information and links to their sources; especially if they're quoting statistics and/or research. This is but one of those reasons.

From the SPLC* web site:

Pioneer Fund Assets Divided; New Leadership Appointed

In October 2012, Jean-Philippe Rushton, a Canadian psychology professor and probably the most important race scientist in North America, died of cancer. At the time of his death, Rushton was running the Pioneer Fund, a grant-making entity founded in the 1930s by Americans with Nazi sympathies. In recent decades, Pioneer has been the only major foundation devoted to subsidizing race science and eugenics research, areas of science that are now fully discredited.

Under Rushton, the Pioneer Fund gave out very few grants, concentrating its disbursements on prominent race scientists such as Jared Taylor of the white nationalist group, American Renaissance. Rushton also headed the Charles Darwin Research Institute, located in Port Huron, Mich., an online outfit that distributed his racist research. Rushton’s most infamous study concluded that brain and genital size were inversely related, suggesting that black people are less intelligent than whites and more highly sexualized. Sometime in the last year, the website for the Charles Darwin Research Institute went offline.


{richard} Lynn {rushton's successor} is a professor emeritus in psychology at the University of Ulster whose personal webpage lists as interests sex and race differences and eugenics (the “science,” much admired by the German Nazis, of selectively breeding human beings to create “better” people). He runs his own outfit, the Ulster Institute for Social Research, which has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in Pioneer grants over the years. The institute appears to be primarily an online effort and is registered to an address near London.

The Pioneer website said that Rushton had left the Charles Darwin Research Institute in the control of his son, Stephen Rushton, an associate professor of education at the University of South Florida. The younger Rushton had served on Pioneer’s board for several years. The Pioneer Fund website further said that Rushton had done so “in the expectation that his son would support research of the kind,” meaning race science, “that had been supported by the Pioneer Fund.” The website said that Stephen Rushton had then “transferred the assets of the Charles Darwin Research Institute to the JSP Education Foundation (JSP stands for John Stephen Philippe).” Lynn and Rushton were listed as contacts for the fund.

<snip; there's a little more at the link in the title.>

{emphasis was added}

*SPLC; Southern Poverty Law Center (here is where I mention how sad it makes me to have to explain what SPLC stands for)

No valid source for "women own/control/influence" x% of wealth.

'Valid' is used in this instance as defined in the #2 definition of the second definition.

I did some searching and couldn't trace to a source for this assertion. I did find an article at the wsj by "The Numbers Guy" who also couldn't find a source for this 20 year old adage.


For at least two decades, this number has been a fixture of news articles, marketing websites and books about consumer behavior. And as with many oft-repeated statistics, no one is sure where it originated.


In addition to having murky origins, the number appear to be wrong. Several recent surveys suggest that men have nearly equal say on spending, and that when men and women live together, both participate in spending decisions. In a survey conducted last year of nearly 4,000 Americans 16 and older by Futures Co., a London consulting firm, just 37% of women said they have primary responsibility for shopping decisions in their household, while 85% said they have primary or shared responsibility. The respective figures for men were similar: 31% and 84%.

<snip to end of article>

Researchers say so many judgments and emotions go into consumer purchases that it likely isn't possible to measure who makes which household spending decisions.

"{80%} is not a credible figure," says Esther Duflo, an economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who studies consumer behavior. "There just is not one. How would you possibly estimate it?"

The woman who is often mentioned as the "source" for the numbers, CEO of TrendSight Group, Marti Barletta, has a rather long and arduous blog post describing how she came to to use the 80% figure in 1999 "although there was no primary source for it, it was consistent with the "gestalt" of numbers we did have sources for..." TrendSight group is a marketing strategy firm specializing in marketing based on gender.

This reminds me a lot of the "commonly known fact" that "A woman over age 40 has a better chance of being killed by a terrorist than of getting married. "

As Mark Twain said, "It's not what you don't know that kills you, it's what you know for sure that ain't true."

Fortunately, this particular adage doesn't have deadly consequences, unless you're in the marketing business.

time mag, is, and always has been, a r/w rag.

At its most innocuous, it "just" supports the status quo. The status quo of "America" as the exceptional country with a manifest destiny.

It was founded by henry luce. he also founded life mag. and fortune and sports illustrated. he was a proponent of "American" exceptionalism. he also, "used Time to support right-wing dictatorships in the name of fighting communism." (See his wiki page which is somewhat accurate.)

Do you honestly think that hitler as "man of the year" was a mistake? The fascists hated "communism." Which side do you think old henry, who was "editor-in-chief of all his publications until 1964" and an "influential member of the Republican Party" took in any editorial decisions?

Please learn about the sources quoted and noted here. The number of reliable sources available to us is 0. Any source, no matter how much you may agree with their "reporting," has an agenda. Informing "the masses" accurately and without prejudice is at the bottom of their priorities.

Penguin Sex.


- A 100-year-old report from Captain Robert Scott's 1910 polar expedition recorded Adelie penguins' sexual behaviors.

- Among the things the polar explorer found shocking were non-procreative sex and homosexual acts.

Hidden for nearly 100 years for being too "graphic," a report of "hooligan" behaviors, including sexual coercion, by Adelie penguins observed during Captain Scott's 1910 polar expedition have been uncovered and interpreted.

The naughty notes were rediscovered recently at the Natural History Museum in Tring, in England, and published in the recent issue of the journal Polar Record.

There is no such thing as a government inspired conspiracy to hide information for the "good" of the people who are "too sensitive" and "too ignorant" to understand the information presented to them.

When the "young and healthy" become the "old and infirm."

Don't want to pay into a system because you don't need it?

Fine. There goes the fire department since your house isn't on fire...right now.

There goes the emergency room since you aren't currently having a heart attack or a sucking chest wound.

Here's the point: you want it there when YOU need it, you get to pay for it when OTHERS need it so it's there for YOU when YOU need it.

We all pay into that which benefits us all; whether now or later.

In spite of what you think, none of us is (yet) immortal or safe from this thing called Life.

How much should it cost (adjusted for region) to live humanly?

How much should you have to pay to be considered human and worthy of human rights?

How old should you be?

Of what skin "color?" Sexual orientation (as determined by birth)?

Of what economic class?

What does the Bible/Koran/Torah say is required to be considered human?

Credit score?

Checking account balance? Stock portfolio?

Acres of property owned?

What are the standards by which one is judged human and deserving of human rights?

The insurance regime is sabotaging the ACA.

Wow. Who would have thought? (do I really need a sarcasm tag here?)

This is the transition and backlash period when private industry, specifically the industry most likely to lose out if the ACA is successful, starts to "set it up to fail." Power never gives up power-over willingly.

The other industries who will sabotage anything remotely benefiting "We, the people," will be the medical industry and political hacks looking for low hanging fruit and scoring easy points. Most people apparently don't bother to read beyond headlines much less question what they read beyond the headlines.

Get ready for it (oops, too late).

If you're inclined to believe everything you read and you don't bother to read beyond the headlines and/or the "facts" presented, it's going to be very painful for you if you support the ACA. If you don't support the ACA, this is your time to "shine" and post all the minor bull-shit coming down the pike.


We are living in interesting times. (If you're not familiar with that phrase I suggest DuckDuckGo as your "safer" search engine.)

Catastrophic Coverage in the Marketplace for under 30 and/or low income.

This OP is being made at B2G's suggestion. I'm doing it because I still tend to fight for the underdog and he's getting beat pretty bad for what he said in the maternity thread. B2G, I'm a mean, "old," female and feminist who has chosen to not have children.

Can I buy a "catastrophic" plan?

People under 30 and some people with limited incomes may buy what is called a "catastrophic" health plan. It protects you from very high medical costs.

<snip to a video here>

A catastrophic plan generally requires you to pay all of your medical costs up to a certain amount, usually several thousand dollars. Costs for essential health benefits over that are generally paid by the insurance company.

These policies usually have lower premiums than a comprehensive plan, but cover you only if you need a lot of care. They basically protect you from worst-case scenarios.

Marketplace catastrophic plans cover prevention

In the Marketplace, catastrophic policies cover 3 primary care visits per year at no cost. They also cover free preventive benefits.

If you have a catastrophic plan in the Marketplace, you can’t get lower costs on your monthly premiums or on out-of-pocket costs based on your income.

Catastrophic plans for people with limited incomes

People 30 and over with low incomes for whom other insurance is not considered affordable or who have received a hardship exemption from the fee may be able to buy these catastrophic plans in the Marketplace.

Learn if you qualify in the Marketplace

When you fill out a Marketplace application you'll see catastrophic plans listed as options if you qualify for them. If you don’t qualify for a catastrophic plan, you won’t see them as an option.
Emphasis added.

This is all from healthcare.gov and I've tried to recreate all the links from the original except the video. I'm pretty sure this information is in the public domain, but if a host insists, I'll pare down to 4 paragraphs.

It ain't perfect. It's a start.

"it presents a real danger to the Republican future: will give the Democrats a lock..."

The real reason they hate and fight the ACA even to the brink of economic collapse.

No, I don't think they'll raise the debt ceiling. I pray, and I don't normally pray, that I am wrong.

There is a long and sordid history of repubs against healthcare for the US.

From page 2 of the timeline quoted and linked below.

December 2, 1993 - Leading conservative operative William Kristol privately circulates a strategy document to Republicans in Congress. Kristol writes that congressional Republicans should work to "kill" -- not amend -- the Clinton plan because it presents a real danger to the Republican future: Its passage will give the Democrats a lock on the crucial middle-class vote and revive the reputation of the party. Nearly a full year before Republicans will unite behind the "Contract With America," Kristol has provided the rationale and the steel for them to achieve their aims of winning control of Congress and becoming America's majority party. Killing health care will serve both ends. The timing of the memo dovetails with a growing private consensus among Republicans that all-out opposition to the Clinton plan is in their best political interest. Until the memo surfaces, most opponents prefer behind-the-scenes warfare largely shielded from public view. The boldness of Kristol's strategy signals a new turn in the battle. Not only is it politically acceptable to criticize the Clinton plan on policy grounds, it is also politically advantageous. By the end of 1993, blocking reform poses little risk as the public becomes increasingly fearful of what it has heard about the Clinton plan.


I highly recommend reading the entire timeline. There are so many parallels to today. It is also, in my opinion, the origin of the deluded and extreme hatred of the Clintons and of Hillary specifically. Had you lived through those times and remember, you might agree.

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