Recent posts by Guillem14 on Kongregate

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Spartacus

That does not mean it is accurate.

As far as I know, all the webs you’re providing me could be webs that you have done to prove a point. Also, your webs don’t show their primary sources and don’t have a quality assurance. So I guess you have to try again. And hey, about checking the primary sources… you’re the only one who has not checked it. Every time I link wikipedia as a source is because I’ve checked a thousand times the links it contains, to know if the information can be trusted or not. Since you’re the one bitching around about the low quality of wikipedia, you should check the primary sources too. If the primary sources are wrong or not trustworthy then your claims are fair, since you don’t do it, you’re talking about things you actually don’t know about. But somehow, it doesn’t surprise me. You’re the only dogmatic here.

I assume something smaller

So you’re supposed to know what karma was refering about. You say that I have no idea what karma ment but you’re supposed to be able to read karma’s mind. Why are you able to make assumptions and I’m not? My assumptions were far more reasonable than yours, your irrational hate against karma makes you read his posts in an impressively biased way. You’re only taking jabs at him. But, hey, I’ll ask him to come back and clear the issue.

S: (n) breadbasket

It’s just a guess, but you’ve never heard about figurative speech, don’t you? Metaphors? Hyperboles? If you want to prove your point you have to show me a numerical proof stating the quantity of grain that Sicily was exporting to Rome at this time. A dictionary definition is not enough.

Now, as for your links

Strange thing, since it gives me no problems. The tinyurl link is a word document, about the Utexas link, maybe you could scroll down the page. You have fingers, don’t you? I guess it doesn’t really matter, I’ll quote a brief passage for you, and about the third link stop with the ad hominems you’ve ben using during all this discussion to “prove” your “arguments” and read. If I’m making the effort to read your sources, you should read mine (and the source I provided was quite interesting and not very long).

For centuries, North Africa’s fecund fields served as a Mediterranean granary sustaining states and empires.

(from UTexas)

About your next response…

Spartacus could just have some guys follow the ships around.

First assumption: this guys would have seen the ships comming.
Second assumption: this guys would have run fast enough to reach Spartacus and his army before the roman triremes reached the coast.
Third assumption: the slaves army was composed of Ussain Bolts that were able to run fast enough to reach the determined coast were the romans were shoring and would still be fresh to fight the enemy.
Fourth assumption: the roman army would be in the ships long enough to allow the slaves arribe to their position.

I’ve already said that Sicily is a great island if you have to travel across it with a horse. These scouts should have seen the ships departing from the harbours to have enough time to send the informers, prepare the army and reach the particular position. The greeks knew that they were going to be attacked by the persians before the persian ships departed, also the coast of Greece is very steep, so the persians had a very limited space to shore. You’re comparing two situations with nothing in common.

Crassus will declare himself emperor

No, he’d have resigned and another one would have been instituted dictator. Or maybe the senate would have considered the situation as exceptional and would have extended Crassus command. Also, if Crassus had taken the title of imperator he’d have had to face Julius Caesar and Pompey, Caesar had the support of the people and Pompey the support of the senate, two tough opponents. When Caesar decided to make himself a full-time dictator, Crassus and Pompey were both dead. You’re building upon an hypotesis, so you actually don’t know what would have happened in this case.

Yeah. Except for the pirates.

I’ve already stated that Rome was smart enough to reach an agreement with the damn pirates, and the grain supply would have been protected by roman triremes so stop going in circles.

Just because Spartacus had no navy didn’t mean he couldn’t build one.

You know how much time is needed to create a fleet? And creating a fleet without expert engineers? Do you really think that the romans would give him the time he needed to create such a fleet? It wouldn’t be like: “Hey, Spartacus, do you already have the fleet? No? OK, just checkin’. Don’t worry, we’ll wait, give us a ring.”

The Persians didn’t manage this.
1. Proof? Why wouldn’t Spartacus be able to?
2. As does Spartacus. He’s just freed the large population of local slaves, they know what’s there.
3. Spartacus was a fantastic general.

I’ve already adressed the persians issue a thousand times, don’t wanna hear? OK, I won’t bother to say it again.

  1. Take a look at the causes of the war, the geography of Greece and you’ll see that, bearing in mind the main objective of the persians, this was the only place they could shore.
  2. Hmmm… no, few slaves maybe know the geolocation, but most of them just know the place they are working at.
  3. Because you say so. Even if he was, the slaves he leaded weren’t soldiers and weren’t equiped properly.
    Again some definitions and a map that I don’t know what’s supposed to do here.

You don’t know.

I’m making a guess. People don’t tend to consider civilians (AKA potential soldiers) as part of the military. The fact that all the men of the Republic had to serve some years in the army and could be called up when it was needed greatly increses the number of possible soldiers that couldn’t be counted in the graphic.


Maybe you can learn some history and stop asking for proofs. You probably should admit that you haven’t the slightest idea about the matter.

They didn’t have enough leigons in Italy to stop Spartacus

And he did not attacked Rome, huh? Guess what… proof? They had enough legions, but not experienced, that’s why they called Pompey and his veterans.

Just for your information

I knew it, but probably you don’t know what stipendii was.

all have to go home after a few months

You have in mind a democracy, roman soldiers had to serve YEARS and they didn’t went back home until they were licenciated. Probably you should know this, since you’re an expert about the matter.

Option 2 means the locals get military training.

Mixed legions FTW? the carthaginian soldiers didn’t served in Carthage, the only soldiers that served near their homelands were the roman patricians (from the city of Rome).

Rome killed Carthage, who is allied with Phoenecia.

Probably you should check the ates again, between the destruction of Carthage and this there’s a 75 years break. It’s easy to forgot when there’s nobody to tell… And it’s easy to forgive when there are such a lucrative business.

Proof that their progeny was Romanized?

Seriously, man, learn some history, you’re being ridiculous.

Nah, I was just calling your statement sort of dumb. Please give me a source other than a Monty Python movie.

And this is supposed to be an argument? or you’re just acting like a fool to achieve something? Were have you read that Monty Python was my source? I’ve related my argument with a gag that appears in the movie, and anyone with half a brain can read my statement and understand what I’ve said in the proper way.

like the Social War

But it wasn’t a war against Rome, it was a rage war. People was hungry and they rebeled but they didn’t rebelled because hey were conquered by Rome. That’s the point I’m making.

burden of proof

Read this

The rest of things are just statements you’re throwing to try to make some kind of point that I’ve adressed a thousand times. Right now I can’t spend my time here, so you can search my respond in my previous posts. If you feel that they’re a very important part of your argument, let me know it and I’ll respond it as soon as I can.

EDIT: I have to add that I’m getting tired of this discussion, you’re only going in circles without actually proving any one of your points nor backing you statements, just throwing “arguments” around and asking for proof about things that are absolutely obvious (even if I don’t care to back them, it gets really tiring). You’re very annoying since you chose to completely ignore all the arguments people has provided in this thread. You choose just to hide in a corner and suddenly jump asking for proof or laugh about the typos people make while they write. I guess that this is the concept you have of a serious discussion. Good luck with this, I guess I’ll leave the discussion.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Spartacus

I could go on and change it whenever I liked.

And, quoting vika, your vandalism will be fixed in a day or two. Also, you can check the primary sources to check if the data corresponds with the info. Your argument is the one that wield lazy people. Now, I see the possibility of editing Wikipedia as an advantage, with other sources, the individual who has written the information can “fabricate” the data and no one can check it nor correct it.

Rome referred to the city.

Actually no, the term Ancient Rome is used to refer to the civilization, the civilization centered in the city of Rome. Since you are ignoring the fact that karma wasn’t talking about the city but using the first meaning of the word you’ve proven to be wrong in both points.

The other links I gave you?

In both of them appear the term breadbasket of Rome but nowhere says that it was the MAIN food suplier of the Republic. If you argue me that the term has implicit this condition of Sicily as the MAIN source I’ll say you that no, it actually doesn’t show nothing, since North Africa has a similar term (even if YOU have decided that my sources weren’t as reliable as yours).
Oh, and by the way, you probably should search in the second and third page of the link I gave you, there are more “reliable sources”. Just some examples:

You haven’t proved your point, that’s what I was trying to say with this, not to prove that North Africa was the main food supply.

Spartacus, [..], could make raids verrry difficult

This is just an assumption you’ve made to support your argument. You can be as brilliant as you want, but you can’t be in all places at the same time. Even if Sicily seems a relatively small island, without the transportation we have today you’d last a whole lot of time. And time here is something vital.

Crassus’s reign as dictator only last six months

“only”? How many time do you think he needed to face such a “threat”? with unlimited powers, the whole army under his orders and a complete control over the republic, with the entire support of the Republic, he had no problems to worry about but the “slaves army”. All the dictators Rome had (except Sulla and Julius Caesar) dispatched their business before the expiration of the appointment.

Not in the Straits of Messina it isn’t.

But the rest of the east coast isn’t the Straits. It’s a fast and easy way to reach Sicily without many problems. And yes, I’ve read the Odyssey, but probably Homer exaggerated quite a bit (even if I accept that some ships had great trouble in the zone of the Strait, where some of them shipwrecked).

You just follow the ships

You need to know beforehand where will these ships shore with a minimum of precision. If you have absolutely zero information you can’t have your army ready and expect to have enough luck to find the ships while they shore, this is just stupid. If a guy sees the ships while they are about to reach the coast, the enemy army will be able to shore without many problems before he can report this information and they’ll have set a defensive position before the arribal of the slaves army.
Also, you can’t compare it with Marathon because:

  1. in Marathon, the Athenians were aware of the location where the persians wanted to shore.
  2. the Athenians had a great knowledge about the land where they were going to battle.
  3. the Athenians were great soldiers, had a gerat equipment and had group tactics that allowed them to completely annihilate the persian army.

The slaves had nothing of this.

However, they did not conquer it in 100 BC. No? Just checking.

Yep, this part wasn’t conquered until 120 AC

Do you know whether this includes reservists or not?

The graphic is talking about Roman military size, i.e., active soldiers. So no, reservists aren’t included here.

Proof? Carthage has had plenty of time to recover its naval strength, as Carthage does like to be naval. Also:
The Romans didn’t control Phonecia at this time. Sowwy.
Yes. There was no Carthage at this point. And as you might think, the Carthaginian people might be pretty pissed at this, no?

OK, here’s a lot of things that must be adressed. First of all, Carthage lost all their military might at the First Punic War, when Rome conquered Sicily. In the second and third wars Carthage used great armies but not navies. With the destruction of Carthage, the center of decision and power, they had no chance to rebuild a fleet or an army and unify it. And bearing in mind that they had Roman legions all over the place, the creation of an army (and we’re talking of a great army, and army capable of face a legion) became something impossible. Also, carthagians were being recruited to increase the roman army.
And shall I point you again that there were practically no rebellions in North Africa during the roman domain? Their quality of life increased with the romanization (it’s the same case you find in Hispania and in the South of Gaul).

Secondly, I’ve never, NEVER, said that Phoenicia was under Rome’s control. Take a look at what I’ve actually said:

But there are plenty of people who would be willing to do the shipping (phoenicians, etc.) to make some money.

What the heck!? There’s no need to be under Rome’s control to make business with them! It has been demonstrated that there was business with Rome even in the tribal Germany. Sow why not with Phoenicia and Egypt? Sowwy fow you.

Lastly, the habitants of Carthage had nothing to do with all of this, the fall of Carthage is in 150 BC, we’re talking about the 75 BC, most of them were dead and few of them were free. The progeny had been romanized, so there was no problem with them. Try again.

Ah, how my standard of living goes up when Romans show up, rape my wife, and salt my fields. Proof?

Emotional appeal? Yes, they’ll screw you, and they’ll also build the sewerage, aqueducts, etc. that will improve the quality of life of the new habitants. This new habitants will be in part romans and in part the progeny of the original habitants. There’s a fun gag about this in The Life of Brian. It takes down all your rethoric.

That didn’t stop many provinces from rebelling.

I’m starting to doubt if you actually read my posts. In places where the romanization was successful there were no rebellions, take it or leave it but facts are facts. The provinces that rebelled were those that from the very beggining showed an open hostility against Rome. Israel mainly because their religion, North Gaul because their culture of warfare, etc. Oh, and by the way, Boadicea wasn’t a province but a celtic queen, and the acts of an individual (even if they allow to start a rebellion) show nothing but an exception.

And never have the Carthaginians had such an opportunity, or been made to feed Rome so much.

Already adressed but hey, I’ll do it again. With a whole lot of roman soldiers in your city, I guess that you won’t be willing to play that game. Ya know, this guys don’t take a joke.

The burden of proof is on your shoulders.

You know how burden of proof works? The one who makes the cliam shows the proof. You made the original claim saying that wikipedia is innacurate, you have to show me a proof I can’t apply to other sources. Demandind proof to those who don’t have to provide it may works with some people, but not with me.

It’s called being hungry.

It’s called suicide, 10 bandits against 100 legionaries ready to do what is needed to protect the food. Also, food was provided via ship. There were no bandits in the sea except the pirates, if you make a deal with them… take your own conclusions.


Obviously you trust very much in your eloquency. And when I said “from you” I was refering to you as an individual, Roman soldiers take the crops from you and give them to Rome.

Take enough food away, and revolts happen. No duh.

You’re not taking it, you’re paying for it. You’re making money with their needs. Duh! I hardly see a reason for them to rebel.

Ooh, you have pictures of the books. That means you MUST be right. Fail.

You asked for my sources, I brought them to you. Now you only have to get them and read them. Fail. Obvious troll is obvious.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Spartacus

… Once again, we have Wikipedia here. Generally unpredictable.

Seems that you noticed I’ve only used wikipedia as a source in my last post. I’ve only used (and I’ll only use) Wikipedia because I’ve seen you love it a whole lot. Since you don’t provide a single and feasible argument against Wikipedia that can’t be applied to any other source I’ll keep using it in this discussion.

Yes. But Karma said “Rome itself”.

It’s just a matter of semantics, if you decide that when he’s talking about Rome he’s only talking about the city and not the whole extension that was considered Rome then… good for you, you’re the one who sees that as a problem.

Or you could just look at this Google search

This proves nothing. You still have to show me proofs to demonstrate that Sicily was the main suplier of Rome. If you search in Google about North Africa you’ll find plenty of sites that back my statement too (bearing in mind that Rome, even if it was said to be a Republic, was actually an empire without an emperor, at least until the advent of Caesar Augustus).

Sicily could support the whole slave army anyway.

Because you say so, I suppose. Quick strikes and raids would weaken Sicily and it’s production of food. As soon as the original habitants of Sicily started to suffer starvation riots would spread against the slaves. Now, this “army” would have to pacify the island and prevent a oman invasion.

Roman triremes have to stay relatively close to shore

The Mediterranean Sea is quite a peaceful sea, it’s not an ocean, where storms make 100 ft. waves and such. Also, probably you should take a look to the map, Sicily is very, very close to Italy (less than two miles away between the mainland and the Strait of Messina) and the route between Italy and the eastern shore of the island is very safe, since both lands protect the ships from extremely dangerous storms.

The slaves would be able to see them before they got there

Yes, they can see the ship comming, but they don’t have the time to prepare themselves for battle neither to prepare defenses nor to warn their companions. If the Roman army shores, the slaves are done, if a few hundreds try to face the onslaugh of a roman fleet, they’re done. cwutididthar?


Because you’ve never made a typo, yeah… Thanks anyways.


Actually, the green map shows that part of the south and part of the west of what is currently considered as Germany were conquered during the Empire. The first map clearly shows it and even names the provinces.
I’ll quote the part of the post you were responding:

The Roman Empire never fully conquered Germany, but they conquered part of it, a great part.

Probably I made an hyperbole when I said a great part, but sizes are relative, so, actually, you’re the one making wrong statements. Just a friendly advice:

So you take large numbers of men from all places to Sicily.

No, I don’t. I was just stating the number of troops that the Republic had avaible. Ten legions should be more than enough to defeat the slaves. And when I said 200000 men avaible, I was talking about soldiers in active, without having to recruit cor calling up veterans nor reservists.

Then, you use Carthage (whose navy you happen to be using)

No, I don’t. Happens that Carthage’s fleet was destroyed in the First Punic War, their maritime might was nullified. But there are plenty of people who would be willing to do the shipping (phoenicians, etc.) to make some money. Also, Carthage was completely destroyed at the end of the Third Punic War (146 BC), so there were only romanized settlements of carthaginian survivors, unable to start a war.

Carthage, unsurprisingly, doesn’t like this, and notices that Rome’s food depends on it.

Surpriprisingly, Rome doesn’t care if North Africa agrees with it’s policies, and since part of the army is there protecting the south frontiers, there should be no problem to enforce Rome’s will. Also, bear in mind that the invasion of Rome meant a highly increase of the quality of life of those who were living there.

and not being loyal to Rome like Italy was

Notice that there is no notice of many rebellions in North Africa against the Roman Republic (the Jugurthine War can’t be considered a rebellion, and even if you consider it as such, then we still have notice of very few rebellions in these lands), so I’m very skeptical with your statement.

well, it’s a perfect time for rebellion, or at least cutting off food supplies

I guess it’s not, already adressed.

Romans called these guys barbarians.

I call it generalization. Romans called barbarians the habitants of the northern Gaul, the rebellious ones. The south of Gaul and Hispania were successfully romanized, no plots, no rebellions, absolute loyalty to Rome and very productive provinces.

More Wikepedia. Innacurate.

Then show me a better source that states the opposite. Back your opinion with facts or accept the proofs I bring. It’s like saying: “I don’t like what you say, I don’t wanna hear so it’s not true”. It’s not enough to show your skepticism, you have to disprove my source, make a claim and back it with something.

You are under the assumption that all the bandit people would be on the same side.

Hmmm… No, but with the two main threats neutralized and giving minimal protection to the carriages there would be no problems.

Let’s assume that they will.

Because they prefer to die all of them than to take away the crops from you, and because they preefr having their families suffering than having your suffering from starvation. How empathic of them!

causing them to take food from Carthage, amplifying said rebellion.

Buuut… since there’s no rebellion they can take food of both places. Now nobody will suffer starvation since everybody will have enough for their needs and the slaves are oing to be pwned.

Do you have proof of this?

Plutarch and Appian of Alexandria are my sources. Maybe they exaggerated but I don’t know. I, personally, believe them, Rome was capable of such things.

EDIT: Oh, yeah, and what beauval said

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Spartacus

Gathering crops is hard when there are no crops to gather.


I’ll quote it for you:

The prosperity of most towns depended on agriculture. Called the “granary of the empire”, North Africa, according to one estimate, produced one million tons of cereals each year, one-quarter of which was exported. Additional crops included beans, figs, grapes, and other fruits.

[Bold for emphasys] Guess what? The Roman province of North Africa was established in the year 146 BC, so yes, Rome had an alternative food suply even if they had lost Sicily.
Sicily, even if it was used as a food source, it’s importance was mainly strategic.

You could argue me that if the slaves had the control of Sicily they could easily attack the food supplies from Africa, but you’d be forgeting that these slaves had no fleet, they hired the fleet of Cilician pirates. It’s highly probable that Rome would have arranged some kind of treaty with the pirates to completely isolate the slaves. So, oh… Rome has food and the slaves are now prisoners. Not the brightest idea I’ve ever heard.

Yeah, Rome was the seat of Western civilization. That does not make free food magically appear.

You know, the countryside surrounding Rome and nearby provinces was a source of food too, even if it couldn’t entirely cover the demand.

3)Maybe you should tell me instead of trying to act “deep”.

“Act deep”? C’mon, it’s as clear as an azure sky of deepest summer. And the relevance is obvious.

It was the MAIN food supply.

Source? I’m surprised that nobody has still demanded proofs about your statements, it seems like you’re the only one being able to demand proofs and sources backing statements.

But a grass fire does not envelope an entire island without some sort of drought.

You still don’t get how it works, don’t you? As the army advances or retreats they burn the resources that the enemy could use, just in case. Bearing in mind that Rome’s food suply didn’t depended entirely on Sicily’s production, I’m completely sure that they would. You know, the roman army could burn a whole lot of crops until they were faced by the slaves army. And there’s the possibility that the Roman army could strike and hide. Attack the main farmlands while they were unprotected and retreat.

Rome was the one being starved out.

You still have to show sources, until then, I’ve proved you wrong.


Your point 7 was and still is irrelevant, is just an hypotesis about where could this possible battle be. An amphibious batle only happens when the attackers and the defenders are in the same place to fight (D’uh!). You’re presuming that the slaves would know where the roman army would shore before they did. Also, the slaves only defeated roman legions leaded by incompetents, against a qualified general (i.e. Pompey) and the might of the roman army they wouldn’t have had a chance.

Rome never conquered Germany

LOL wut?
The Roman Empire never fully conquered Germany, but they conquered part of it, a great part.

Several times.

With incompetent generals. Incompetent generals. The main leaders where on campaign. When Crasus and Pompey turned back to Italy to solve the problem they did it at the first try.

Now, let’s take a look at the situation. For the sake of the argument, let’s assume that the slaves reached Sicily and successfully took control over it, this is the extension of the Roman Republic by 100 BC:

As you may see, Sicily is completely surrounded. Without a fleet, the slaves are prisoners there. Rome still has crops, the suplies come from Campania, North Africa, Hispania, etc. Even if the roman army doesn’t use scorched earth tactics, they’d only need to gather enough troops to assault the island. By the 75 BC they had aproximately 200000 men avaible, so, I guess that the slaves wouldn’t have stood a chance.

France and Spain were not very developed at the time

This is completely false, so I’ll demand you proof to back your statement

Moving stuff overland when you haven’t invented the cart or a good horse collar is difficult at best.

What the heck are you talking about? Do you want me to quote it for you? Here you have it:

Carts have been mentioned in literature as far back as the second millennium B.C.


Long before the horse collar harness, there was the less efficient throat-girth harness. This could be found in many ancient civilizations, brought to the attention in the European intellectual sphere of the early 20th century French cavalry officer Lefebvre des Noëttes.1 This type of collar was known in ancient Chaldea (3rd millennium BC), both Sumeria and Assyria (1400 BC–800 BC), New Kingdom Egypt (1570 BC–1070 BC), Shang Dynasty China (1600 BC–1050 BC), Minoan Crete (2700 BC–1450 BC), Classical Greece (550 BC–323 BC), and ancient Rome (510 BC–476 AD).

[Bold for emphasys]

Any movement of food is vulnerable to bandits

Slaves would be isolated in Sicily and probably Rome would have arranged a treaty with the pirates, they were smart enough to not open two different battlefronts.

If you’re a starving farmer, and the Roman Army shows up to take what food you have left, you aren’t going to sacrafice it for some city hundreds of miles away that you’ve probably never been to, would you?

And I guess that the troops that are here to take your crops will listen to you. Yes, they will.

Seeing as he was rampaging around Italy, people would have to find out, at least in the Italian peninsula.

Ya know, in the city of Rome a few hundreds of slaves were slaughtered as a warning to other slaves not to do like the rebels.

I’ll tell you the same you’ve been saying to many discussers in this discussion: maybe YOU should learn some history and while you’re at it you can back your statements. Thanks.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / It's Almost 911...

Originally posted by Finkblob:
Originally posted by SaintAjora:

a more recent effect on today’s issues.

That might be because people don’t let go…

I think you should count soldiers dying as deaths.

Unlike 9/11 victims or civilians killed in Iraq, the soldiers had an option…

So you mean the Taliban.

he taliban arent simply a group of people who decided to drive a plane into a bilding because thier religion siad they should. they are a terrorist organization

…really guys? The people responsible for 9/11 were involved in an organization called Al Qaida. Not the Taliban.

Where’s your proof?

How many sources do you want?


Topic: Serious Discussion / women eating men

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Topic: Serious Discussion / The Christian Holocaust

How many people bieng “cleansed” of a country or bieng oppressed till another one has the right to step in and use violence against that country?

I’d say that as soon as a the first sign of genocide is shown the rest of the countries should act immediately to prevent it, or at least to stop it ASAP.

Originally posted by SaintAjora:

I don’t understand why only one genocide is being mentioned here; shouldn’t this apply to all genocides?

I guess that because this is one of the most forgoten genocides and because we already have threads about other genocides so he wants to focus in this one. Also, the second part of the thread is applied to all possible genocides.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Bayesian Probability.

I’m not sure if it has been stated with a 100% certainty but it has been, at least, highly improved.

In another source I’ve found this (page 13):

For many years there has been controversy over “frequentist” versus “Bayesian” methods of inference, in which the writer has been an outspoken partisan on the Bayesian side. The record of this up to 1981 is given in an earlier book (Jaynes, 1983). In these old works there was a strong tendency, on both sides, to argue on the level of philosophy or ideology. We can now hold ourselves somewhat aloof from this because, thanks to recent work, there is no longer any need to appeal to such arguments. We are now in possession of proven theorems and masses of worked-out numerical examples. As a result, the superiority of Bayesian methods is now a thoroughly demonstrated fact in a hundred di fferent areas.

I’ve either found this:

However, neither the Bayesian nor the frequentist approach is universally applicable, so in the present more general work we take a broader view of things.

AFAIK it has even been proposed as a model of the scientific method, and it is mainly applied on boolean algebras.

Hope it helps.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Quality or quantity of life.

I’d like to live as long as possible, providing I’m still healthy enough to be active

That’s precisely the idea I have about quality of life (in the sense of having a life for your own, being healthy all your life). Living without your life depending of any kind of support (mechanical or not). Once you lose your health, if you’re never going to recover it, I think that the best you can do is die (in a painless way, of course). No need to enhance your biological capabilities at the expense of years of your life.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Quality or quantity of life.

I’d just like to point that all this efects aren’t a guarantee of quality of life.

It would make you immune to all known illnesses, boost your intellect and physical strength, gives you extra energy, slows ageing and lots of other positive effects on both your physical and mental well-being. The effects last for the rest of your life.

Maybe illness immunity is a good thing to consider, but the rest of effects, even if I consider them desireable, I don’t think that they contribute to have a better life. Quality is measured in terms of happiness, IMO (even if it sounds corny).

EDIT: Fix’d, karma

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

Who said I was taking myself as the standard?

You did not say it but you did it as soon as you tacitly took yourself as the paradigm of what normal is. You’re just incurring in the naturalistic fallacy, just because we have ears and some of us can hear all the individuals must hear. It’s the same kind of argument that people use to attack homosexual relationships.
Deaf people have a determinated kind of experiences that people who can’t hear don’t, and vice versa. You’re supposing that you can objectively decide which experiences are better than others.

Are you saying that if I come across a person, and later on many more people, with the ability to hear sound and see them utilizing that ability (ie: listening to music, checking traffic before crossing the street, responding to distant auditory cues, etc.) that I wouldn’t feel like I’m missing out?

Should I even bother responding you if you haven’t one the effort to follow the discussion because from your perspective “5~6 pages worth of various arguments brought forth followed by a relative “NO U” (read: “Emotional Appeal”) is hardly an environment I want to debate in”? Frankly, this has been responded a thousand times but, hey, since you don’t like the responses that Saint and Lax have given you don’t read them and you feel like you’re not “disproved”. Your argument

has got to be one of the most arrogant, insensitive, downright insulting assumptions I have ever heard


As for why there needs to be an advantage, ask Charles Darwin.

I suppose it means Darwin, now I ask him about the advantage issue, he responds me in terms of natural selection, quoting wikipedia :

“Natural variation occurs among the individuals of any population of organisms. Many of these differences do not affect survival (such as differences in eye color in humans), but some differences may improve the chances of survival of a particular individual.”

WTF!? Guess what, deaf people live and survive!? They live in society, can stablish communities and have a comunication code. I guess that we’re falling again into a naturalistic fallacy. It sounds to me like you’re actually trying to defend this.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

The sense of sound […] serves a vital role

for you. Actually, since you’ve lived all yout life with this sense you can’t imagine living without it. You’re commiting the same mistake I was doing in my previous posts, you’re taking yourself as an standard. You can only consider being deaf as a disability if you’ve heard all your life and suddenly you lose this sense, because in this situation you would be losing the sense, you’d know that you lack a sense that you had before. If you never had such sense then you’re missing nothing.

I do not see why or how anyone would choose to deliberately make their child deaf. […] What are the potential benefits (if any)?

The fact that you don’t see the reason (neither do I) is not an argument against giving the possibility of introducing this “variations” (not the best word but I am reticent to use the word disability in these cases). Also, as SaintAjora has said a thousand times “Why does there need to be an advantage? "

1.Dalewyn says it all.

Who’s Dalewyn?

2.I WARNED YOU, SAINT! edit- oh and its kinda trying to see if you have feelings, and frankly, you have shown not to have feelings or understanding. Congratulations, you encourage playing god with children even though you have the mercy of a bull.

Ad hominem much? Quoting Saint, “Using emotions is like throwing a dart in the dark; you are forgoing information and doing something based on transient biases.”

The theme of “playing god is BAD”

Because forcing your set of morals into others is not tyrannycal at all.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

is the couple mentioned in the opening post deserving to have a deaf child?

My response would be affirmative, I tried to imply this with the sentece you’ve quoted. On the other hand, I wonder why someone would like to make their child deaf, but it doesn’t really matter.

If a person who is deaf views hearing insignificantly, for he does not know what sound is from his own sensual perception, then are we justified in judging him on the criteria we give ourselves as people who are able to hear?

Obviously we’re not, that’s why I’ve said:
“they can only value their own experiences without comparing them with experiences that others may have.”
Actually, a deaf individual would be more likely to consider hearing as something irrelevant. Since s/he has no experience of sound I guess that it would be as strange as deafness for us.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / President Obama lies about swimming in the Gulf.

Personal preference, but I just hate seeing the forum get cluttered up with 20 threads that are basically so similar in nature that you can’t always remember which one you posted in LOL.

I agree with you too, softest, funny thing is that a couple of weeks ago he started whining about religion threads invading SD. I suppose that all these threads impeded his “onslaught”.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

is hearing really that important?

Well, I have to admitt that since you presented the first question in your previous post (“is there a significant difference between someone who is deaf and someone who is not?”) I’ve had to rethink my position in this issue.

Obviously, at least from my point of view, both, the deaf and the non-deaf individual only experiments their own experiences, what means that they can only value their own experiences without comparing them with experiences that others may have. The deaf has never heard and will never hear he doesn’t have a comparison point to qualitatively evaluate their experience with other possible experiences; the non-deaf individual, on the other hand, can’t compare the experiences s/he has with this particular sense since s/he does not fully comprehend the scenario.
Ultimately, their experiences are the same and don’t differ at all, whilst one is “used” to hear, the other is not.
This makes me think that, actually, senses only have the importance we give them. Good point, Lax.

Try walking around everyday with white noise playing in your ears

It’s not the same situation since, in this case, you would actually be missing this sense.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

Knowing it does not change the outcome.

Yes it does. Obviously in a direct shot it doesn’t, but if the enemy has not a high accuracy maybe they have to shot several shots before hitting the deaf individual. If you can hear the gun shots you’ll get the hell out of there but if you can’t then you’ll not react. And I’m talking in a situation where you can’t se the shooter nor the bullets.

Furthermore, explosions often send out shockwaves do the the sudden expansion of air (?) and if he can’t hear it, he could perhaps hear it.

Right, but it delays the reaction time.

I think you can see that when you see debris of the roof falling.

You see it because you hear the noise. The noise makes you look at the roof, but even if you see the roof collapsing, your reaction time decreases since you are not aware of what is happening until you see the roof stumbling.

is there a significant difference between someone who is deaf and someone who is not?

This is a very interesting question, actually, I never thought about the issue from this perspective… I suppose that there would be no difference from the perspective of the deaf individual, since s/he has never heard… (what gives you a point in the main discussion)

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

Now, what can’t Tommy do?

I’m tempted to say that he can’t run away from the fire since he didn’t hear the acoustic alarm. It’s the same reason why deaf people can’t do some jobs because the lack of this sense. An example would be a soldier, a deaf soldier would not notice the gun shots until s/he was hit. A deaf firefighter would not heard an explosion or the partial collapse of the building that s/he is working in. Whilst if you are able to hear, in this cases, you have a minimal option to react, being deaf, in cases where other senses are practically useless, it’s nearby impossible.

I sometimes prefer to be left in silence than to hear things that people talk about.

Notice the word prefer, which implies possibility to chose. Even if in your arguments you’re being logically correct, Lax, now you’re departing from personal bias.

His intention is to undercut the child

Even then, if we follow the schemes you brought us in page 3 to support engineered disabilities, this can be not only accepted but supported. I feel that DarkBaron’s example gives us a new perspective.

Here you have:

First off, we will start with my general premises:

  • Structural differences are not inherently disabilities.

  • Functionality does not require specific structures when it doesn’t require specific structures.

  • A structure is not necessary if you don’t need it.

  • If you learn to operate without a structure, then the structure isn’t critical to you.

  • Communication can occur via a variety of methods.

  • There is no reason to always follow the crowd.

I also challenge a few stereotypes and moral assumptions:

  • Requiring help does not presume a disability.

  • Having a disability does not presume requiring help.

  • Just because something confers an advantage does not mean we should be obligated to aim for it.

  • Preventing a condition is not the same as preventing development of an organism.

  • Different does not mean flawed.

  • Right and wrong are subjective.

  • Evolution doesn’t always ‘choose’ ‘good’ traits.

Finally, based on my conversation with Rothycat we settled on one significant distinction:

  • Health issues aren’t the same as social issues.

So how does it all fit together? Like so:

  1. It is ok for parents to select for traits that aren’t ‘wrong’ (initial implied assumption for the topic).
  2. A structural difference that does not significantly impair functioning or health is not ‘wrong’.
  3. Deafness does not significantly impair functioning or health.
  4. Thus deafness is not ‘wrong’.
  5. Since deafness is not ‘wrong’, it is acceptable for parents to select for deafness.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

nothing is preventing deaf people from doing this.

The fact that they don’t have one. Even if they had, they wouldn’t be able to communicate with other non-deaf people unless they were instructed in this particular code. And as I’ve said, while English is taught world wide, signs language is not. Reason: popularity. Even if it’s not a good argument it’s the situation we currently have.

there is a tool they can use.

Oh, don’t get me wrong, what I meant is that there are a whole lot of completely different manual alphabets what implies that they may borrow vocabulary from oral languages but when they express it they use a particualr code that others might not share, the communication problem remains, it’s the same problem as we have with different oral languages but the difference is that is way harder to learn a sign language than an oral one.
Even I find this (my) response stupid.

Well, mainly because it isn’t three different languages.

Except that they are. Using English as an example we find that there are two different codes to speak the same language. As you can see, these codes are completely different one from another. Now, what happens if these two different codes coexist in a single country? I can only think about this as an obstacle, bearing in mind that is way harder to learn a sign language than learning an oral language. Even if they have a 50% intelligibility (something that some other countries don’t have).

Adding anything is adding possible difficulties.

True, but since we’re talking about deafness in our current context this implies that being deaf is more likely that the individual will have difficulties in their communication with the rest of the community. Increases the pontential trouble that this individual might have.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

An appeal to popularity.

Weren’t we talking about communication between communities? A communication code or language is something shared between a group of individuals, i.e., social context. In fact, popularity is the only reason we have when establishing a lingua franca. The problem is that since communication is a matter of popularity and deafness is not a disability shared by the majority of people in the world, sign language is not taught unless there’s a need of such language, what gives validity to beauval statement.

Yes, an appeal to popularity, that’s the way communication works (And I know you already adressed the appeal issue in terms of logical reasoning, actually, you corrected my post in page 3).

“Manual alphabets (fingerspelling)”

Sincerely, I don’t know what you’re trying to point me. Quoting:

Manual alphabets (fingerspelling) are used in sign languages, mostly for proper names and technical or specialised vocabulary borrowed from spoken languages. The use of fingerspelling was once taken as evidence that sign languages were simplified versions of oral languages, but in fact it is merely one tool among many. Fingerspelling can sometimes be a source of new signs, which are called lexicalized signs.

The fact that “proper names and technical or specialised vocabulary” is “borrowed from spoken languages” has no relevance, since they adapt this vocabulary to their communication code.

Also, I’m not sure how having to learn at least three different signs language to communicate with people of your own country is not an avoidable difficulty (in case your child is not deaf but you force it).

That is a fairly empty statement about categorical characteristics; it applies to all categories and so can’t be used as an argument against one. It’s like saying “black people are more likely to be hated for being black than whites are.”

I’m just making the same king of hipotetical statement you made to disprove beauval’s point. Actually what I’m saying is that, since as you said “life is full of difficulties” I don’t see why should we add even more possible difficulties. I’m sure you’ll respond me that actually this difficulties are relative to the individual and that the deaf individual will not consider such as difficulties, but oh, well…

when our opinions start to effect others we have to be careful. I don’t know if that is what you intend, I just want to point it out.

Fair enough, I’ll try to be more careful next time.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / President Obama lies about swimming in the Gulf.

Let the media in and show the Americans what you’re doing. We have rights >:O

I thought that Obama, even if he is the president of the USA, was still a citizen… He has the same rights you have, and one of them is the right against unsanctioned invasion of privacy, you know?

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

Huh? Different languages are different. They are not the same.

Right, that’s why I said: “Before you reply to me that signs language can be learned I’ll point you that learning English is a requirement in most of the countries, while signs language is not, and even if I learn the spanish signs language I’ll not be able to communicate with users of English signs language.”.

Actually, sign language is closer to English since it is just a different presentation of the same language.

That’s not true. Quoting from the source:

“On the whole, deaf sign languages are independent of oral languages and follow their own paths of development. For example, British Sign Language and American Sign Language are quite different and mutually unintelligible, even though the hearing people of Britain and America share the same oral language.

Similarly, countries which use a single oral language throughout may have two or more sign languages; whereas an area that contains more than one oral language might use only one sign language."

This reminds me what beauval said: Deaf individuals do need to communicate with “other communities”, unless you want to confine them to their own ghetto for the deaf, and I don’t think that is what you are suggesting here, or at least I hope it isn’t.

You can’t prove those difficulties will happen; you are assuming they will without any compelling evidence.

Sorry, my bad, I meant to increase the possibility of making appear even more difficulties than those that would appear without the disability (I try to shun semantic problems). If you classify every single contingency that happens in the life of the human individual as a possible source of dificulties I think that there’s no problem with me doing the same.

Everyone thinks that in a circumstance where their opinion differs from what is objectively true that their opinion should matter more.

That’s not what I meant to say, I was just stating my opinion about an opinion I posted above. And yes, I see it’s biased, that why I posted it with the format of an opinion, and that’s why I’ve already admitted that if we keep the discussion in the field of what’s strictly logical the you (you and Lax) are right, but hey, it doesn’t mean that I still find it somehow if not wicked at least frightening.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

They can, just as Spanish speakers can communicate with English speakers.

The difference is that we share the same code. Before you reply to me that signs language can be learned I’ll point you that learning English is a requirement in most of the countries, while signs language is not, and even if I learn the spanish signs language I’ll not be able to communicate with users of English signs language.

Again, life is full of difficulties. That something might cause difficulties doesn’t mean anything.

Sure, but there’s no need to enforce more dificulties in the individual than those s/he will met once s/he grows.

It does confer advantages, but that is beside the point.

Yes, the better development of other senses is an advantage but I don’t think that the advantage fits the loss. And yes, I can consider this as a loss since, even if the individual who is deaf will never be able to hear and hence will not lose any sense, since I can hear, I know that not having this sense would imply some problems that I don’t have to face (yes, it probably would bring some advantages, but this isn’t something that we can claim with 100% reliability).
Obviously, if we keep in the field of what is strictly logic there’s no difference between changing the eyes colour and making someone deaf so I have to admitt that you’re right, but I think that in this circumstances other factors different than logic come into play.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: Engineering Disabilities

Yes, but the point Saint is trying to make here is that since this kind will never be able, s/he won’t be missing nothing.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Special Water.

It’s ok if people decides so, you’re a democratic country after all.

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Topic: Serious Discussion / God is not real

you’re basically saying “Oh you cute little theists, I would hate to break your fragile innocence by being forthright so I’ll wrap my point in big fuzzy words you won’t understand in order to keep you in your shell”

I think you missed the “prbably” part, let me quote it:

“The idea of a deity probably does not transcend conceptuality.”

There’s a huge and evident difference between this statement and the “God is not real” one. In this one you imply the possibility of the existence of the divine entity beyond the mere concept.

It is no more rude to say “God is not real” than it is to say “fairies are not real”. Hell, we’ve even got pictures of fairies; you can’t say the same thing about God.

You know, your statement is actually quite rude. You’re comparing people beliefs with some sort of imaginary and childish creature. Your statement has no more proof that your disqualifying comparison. A comparison that is out of place and content. Oh, and by the way, yes, there are pictorical representations of the christian God (Obviously, they are stereotypes varying the time they were made) (I think that in your post you were implying that you were about the chritian God and making a generalization.)

Edit: oh yeah and Darkruler: existence claims require positive proof. You can’t say “Russel’s Teapot exists because there’s no negative proof for it”; you must demonstrate evidence of existence.

Yes, this is entirely different from logical existence. However, we live in the real world, not in some logical construct. In the real world, we demand positive evidence before accepting existence; that’s just the way it works. If you performed some work for me and I told you that I had given you a pile of cash, you would not be content with “Well, there’s no positive evidence for the existence of a pile of cash, but it might still exist somewhere” – you would say “bullshit, there’s no cash, now pay up”.

Obviously you missed great part of the discussion.