Recent posts by beauval on Kongregate

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Topic: Serious Discussion / Washington Post and The Guardian get Pulitzer prise for exposing NSA secrets

But fuck, when is Europe gonna enter even the 20th century on what form of govt. is rational?

Yeah, I was wondering about that too. It’s a bit rich coming from a man whose rational governmental system involves so many Mexican standoffs it’s a wonder that anything gets done at all.

To my mind this whole Snowden episode is a storm in a teacup. I’m old enough to remember when this bloke was in full cry; when it comes to spy scandals he makes Snowden look like the novice he is.

As far as this country is concerned, Snowden revealed that British intelligence uses digital communication to gather information and for its dirty tricks campaigns. I would have been a lot more concerned if he had revealed that they still rely on eavesdropping on conversations in smokey pubs to get their information. He has revealed very little that we didn’t already know or suspect. I don’t know what all the fuss is about, and Snowden is of little interest on this side of the pond.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / 600

Let’s talk about this theory of your’s that baton has been passed to us. Give an example.

How about the 3 million murdered by Pakistan and its supporters in Bangladesh during its war of independence? Or the upwards of 200,000 Bangladeshi women raped when rape was being used as an instrument of terror? Or the terrorising and murders being carried out in Balochistan? Anyone who doesn’t know about that can start here. Or the disgusting way that Pakistani women are treated by their men? Anyone who doesn’t know about that can find out what lovely people some Pakistanis are here.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / 600

I hope you’re not suggesting that we do it again.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Why american soldiers should not be allowed in ukraine?

But what I don’t understand is why Ukraine voted to be apart of Russia in the first place – forced or not.

Because historically Ukraine was two separate regions. The western half was part of Poland while the eastern half was (periodically) loyal to Russia. Crimea was part of the Ottoman Empire, and has always regarded itself as separate. The unified Ukraine you see on the maps is a post WWII construct. Only western Ukraine has historical ties to the west.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Airplanes just dont disappear, they have to go somewhere... right?

I was arguing about this yesterday with a few friends who were trying to support some of the wilder theories flying around. My feeling, based on the evidence so far presented, is that some kind of catastrophic failure caused the plane to crash into the sea, much as the Canadian pilot has suggested. If the angle of impact was steep enough, it wouldn’t leave much behind, and the Indian Ocean is a very big place to search.

If it was a terrorist attack, one would expect somebody to have claimed responsibility by now, otherwise there is no point.

If it was hijacked by pirates, one would expect somebody to have demanded ransoms by now, otherwide there is no point. You can’t land one of those things on some remote jungle airstrip, you need a big runway to do that. And with all the spy satellites in orbit, one would expect somebody to have seen something, and yet nobody is owning up to seeing anything at all.

Alien attacks, mysterious energy fields and such like are just plain ridiculous, strictly for the tin foil hat brigade.

But none of that will stop the media from coming forward with lurid stories and theories, because they sell newspapers and increase the ratings for some of the more dubious television channels. I daresay we will have to endure some pseudo-documentaries about this before the story is forgotten.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Why american soldiers should not be allowed in ukraine?

So essentially, America is really the only country willing to help Ukraine in response to Putin.

Or maybe America is the only country which thinks that a military confrontation is preferable to negotiations followed by possible economic sanctions.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Gay Marriage

Cheer yourself up with this. We’re a lot more conservative than some of our European neighbours, so if we can do it, maybe one day America will be able to abandon its 19th century mindset. Considering that it doesn’t affect me one iota, I’m surprisingly chuffed about this happening now.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Creationism vs Evolution thread 5: Single christian finds logic secret that makes evolutionists furious

My my, such a lot of fresh and original ideas being put forward here. I look forward to a really fresh and original discussion on this fresh and original subject.

Crow, I know the forum has been as dead as a kipper all day, but I really expected better from you. So no A plusses for you my lad, just an E for effort.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Why american soldiers should not be allowed in ukraine?

dd, Crimea is roughly 60% ethnic Russians, and there are bound to be pro-Russians in other groups too. They shouldn’t need too many persuaders to win the vote.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Why american soldiers should not be allowed in ukraine?

When I see footage of on-going violent political protests resulting in numerous deaths, a president deposed, no clear leadership, and Crimea now demanding a referendum next week with a view to leaving Ukraine altogether and joining the Russian Federation, I don’t think that “chaos” is an unreasonable interpretation of events. How would you describe it?

Now what else have I got wrong? Also I would be interested in your opinion about Crimea joining Russia. As that is the part of Ukraine that Russia is really worried about, do you think that letting it go would be enough to defuse the situation? Would that be enough for Putin to say that he got what he really wanted and leave Ukraine alone?

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Why american soldiers should not be allowed in ukraine?

You may see it as spineless, I prefer to think of it as pragmatic. Russia has always been the noisy neighbour, I guess we just got used to it after a while. I don’t think there are many people in Europe who see Russia as the terrible bogeyman that many Americans seem to think it is. Ukraine is Russia’s back yard, until recently it was part of Russia. We’ve already fought one war in the Crimea to deter Russian aggression, and I don’t think any of us want a rerun of that (even if we did win the first one with a bit of help from the cheese eating surrender monkeys).

I just don’t see the goings-on in Ukraine as being our problem. A big chunk of the country is pro-Russian anyway, so it’s hardly fertile soil for western expansionism. It’s just another fledgling democracy which hasn’t yet worked out that political arguement is supposed to be instead of physical confrontation, not as well as. We’ve all been there, we had nine years of civil war when Parliament began to flex its muscles. And as for Georgia, that was never our problem either, it’s even further away, although I thought the end result was pretty satisfactory as far as the west was concerned. We have more influence there than we really deserve.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Why american soldiers should not be allowed in ukraine?

Issen, if you were a European you would probably wonder why the hell Europe should suffer another round of economic misery and widespread power cuts and fuel shortages just to keep Uncle Sham sweet. Why should we bear the brunt of any repercussions, and why should we start a trade war with our third biggest trading partner? Will the USA help us out when the gas runs out and all our hard won trade deals with Russia fall apart? Ha bloody ha, fat chance of that happening.

The Russians lease Sevastapol harbour as a base for its Black Sea Fleet, it’s no wonder they’re getting twitchy when the entire Ukraine is descending into chaos. Access to warm water ports has always been a big issue in Russia. America has invaded two Carribean islands (Bay of Pigs fiasco and Grenada) simply because it wasn’t happy about events on its own doorstep. Why should it be OK for America to do that but not Russia? And why should anyone in western Europe really care what happens in Ukraine when there’s no money in it for us, however things there turn out (looking at it the American way).

And anyway, a bit of diplomacy is probably a better start than running full pelt down the sanctions route.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Minimalism vs Luxuries

I lean towards minimalism, although I have never seen that as equating with spartanism. I prefer to have one really nice item that I can enjoy, rather than go for a cupboard full of crap that’s likely to sit there forever, unwanted and unloved. I’m definitely not a buyer of all the latest gadgets. I don’t even own a television, neither do I own a mobile phone, although I do have the use of one so I can hook up my laptop to the internet.

Going into pet peeve mode for a moment, I consider mobile phones to be one of the greatest cons ever perpetrated. I don’t want to wander round the house trying to find a signal, I don’t want to have to sit in the garden every time I want to go on the internet, and yet the service providers have convinced practically everyone that that sort of cruddy service is perfectly normal and acceptable. If you bought a television set that only worked in one room in the house, or a washing machine that only worked at certain times of the day, you would complain, and yet with mobile phones you accept that kind of nonsense with barely a word of complaint. It’s typical of the shiny, sparkly and utterly useless rubbish which floods the market today.

Back on topic, I like antique furniture, both for its craftsmanship and its style. By buying selectively at auction I can get a handsome and solidly made piece of furniture for less than I would pay for a chipboard and plastic veneer equivalent at Ikea. If it’s three hundred years old, then with a bit of TLC it should be good for another three hundred. And I am careful to buy only those items for which I have a use. The same goes for many other items about the house; I would far rather buy half a dozen Royal Worcester plates at auction that buy a full dinner service oozing with ordinariness from the local supermarket. Having three pairs of dining chairs from three different periods just adds to the pleasure they give me. I like old things with a bit of character, especially ones which are useful as well. A bit like me really!

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Spanking: yea or nay. -- Now expanded to include: How humanity uses physical force to ensure desired compliant behavior.

Speaking as someone who rather enjoys adult spanking games, it would normally require the use of an implement to leave bruises on me. Now while children may bruise more easily, to suggest that 10 bruises per beating is acceptable just beggars belief. It would allow a child to be beaten black and blue over a period of days or weeks, all quite legally; it leaves the door wide open to child abuse on a spectacular scale.

How this idea ever saw the light of day is beyond me. Where does Kansas get these idiots from? Do they have a standing order with the local mental hospital? Perhaps I’d be better off not asking, eh Karma.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / "Thug" is the new "N-word"/Jordan Davis and Treyvon Martin

It’s taken a while to work out Karma’s logic, and I still haven’t managed to. I just don’t see how a team unable to raise the required numbers equates with an individual who shys away from the big competition because they are afraid they are not good enough. Being a big fish in a small pond proves nothing.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX : If you could go back in time.

I might have guessed you would pick three battles. I shall pick just one.

September 1356, Poitiers, when a beleaguered and outnumbered English army went toe to toe with the French, hammered them and captured their king.

October 1829, Rainhill, when a machine which would change the world was unveiled to the public.

May 1948, London, when Nye Bevan demolished all opposition from the medical profession and set up the NHS two months later. It was the British Labour Party’s finest hour.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / AX: The government should be more social.

Once the results have been determined, the representative will be compelled to vote as the majority of their constituents decided.

At which point they cease to be representatives, and become delegates. There’s a big difference there.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Pop Culture Trending Topics - What do they mean for us?

…although nothing I’ve heard quite gets at the recursive element to these topics. That is, why do they keep coming back?

Could it be that we all simply enjoy a scary story, we like being frightened in a controlled way. While vampires and zombies may be a relatively modern version, ghost stories and horror stories about the dead rising have always been part of human culture. The Christian religion is founded on one such story. Even stories of the seasonal cycle have been dressed up in the same way – Sir Gawain’s green knight, John Barleycorn and so on.

Vampires are here to stay. Dracula and his ilk are generally presented as downright sexy, which is only going to increase their popularity. And I quite like urine and Ung’s take on zombies; they bring back the law of the jungle, and we can feed them to the mincing machine with no feelings of guilt. Cowboys and Indians used to do the same job until we realised that in reality the Indians actually had a pretty shitty deal. But zombies need to be laid to rest permanently, and there’s no downside to killing them, no guilt, no sense of loss. We don’t need to engage our brain, just sit back and enjoy a couple of hours of mindless mayhem. It’s easy entertainment.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Pop Culture Trending Topics - What do they mean for us?

A quick look at Wiki reveals that vampires have been a popular subject with writers up to and including Goethe for the thick end of three hundred years. The article also mentions the vampire craze of the 1720s and 1730s, so this is by no means a recent phenomenon. Cheap vampire films made Christopher Lee (Saruman) a star in the 1960s – we used to love the old Hammer Horror films, and would move heaven and earth to bullshit our way into the cinemas, even though we were technically too young to watch them.

The Wiki article on Zombie literature quotes this little gem from the Legend of Gilgamesh, nearly four thousand years old:-

I will knock down the Gates of the Netherworld,I will smash the door posts, and leave the doors flat down,and will let the dead go up to eat the living!And the dead will outnumber the living!

Tales of necromancy and the dead rising have been popular down the ages – even the Bible has the story of Lazarus – so although not strictly speaking zombies, related themes have been used since the dawn of writing, probably even longer than that. As for post 9/11 anger, we’re not really angry about it at all on this side of the pond – never were really – but we still like a good undead film.

I had heard of steampunk, but didn’t really know anything about. It immediately put me in mind of Heath Robinson and his complex machines designed to do trivial jobs, a theme which was revived in Wallace and Gromit. And in one of the Back to the Future films, didn’t the scientist bloke turn a steam locomotive into a time machine? So it looks like steampunk has just latched on to existing ideas. As someone who likes all things mechanical and industrial, I’m now in danger of wasting countless hours on something I know nothing about a week ago. Thanks for that!

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / What would you do?

Wouldn’t you guys want to run away from the explosion rather than towards it? Oh wait, that’s common sense talking.

No, oddly you don’t. When the Harrods bomb went off, I was a couple of minutes walk away. I wasn’t actually about to walk past it, so there was no sense of having a lucky escape. There were plenty of people around, and I don’t recall anyone at all walking away. As far as I recall everybody headed for Harrods – I suppose we all assumed it was the prime target in that part of Knightsbridge. I can’t explain why. I don’t think I had any particularly noble thoughts about helping my fellow man, it just seemed like the right thing to do. Maybe we’re just more community minded on this side of the pond.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / What would you do?

I would add to Johnny’s stance that there are few things which frighten a man more than the sight of his own blood. If you can hurt a couple of them quickly, maybe get one in a headlock, you do have a decent chance that the rest will back off. I’m getting a bit old for that sort of thing now, but when I was younger I would have waded in and taken my chances. I could be very foolhardy back then, but I could always have found enough “witnesses” to exonerate myself from any consequences.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Do the Fine Arts make you a better person?

Christian art has always celebrated suffering. The crucifixion and martyrdom of saints are favourite subjects.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / What would you do?

Originally posted by thepunisher52:

2. You are in a part of world where terrorist bombings are a norm, you are enjoying a treat and suddenly you hear a blast, what would you do?

I’ve only been close to the site of two bombings, but that’s still probably two more than you. The first was when the IRA attempted to blow up the Central Criminal Court in London, but only succeeded in destroying the pub across the road (I always thought that was a very un-Irish thing to do, and they should have been strung up for that reason alone). It was the first London bombing, and I stayed at my desk like everyone else, because we had no idea what had just happened.

The second was the Harrods bomb. It was the weekend, but I had been summoned to see a client who lived nearby. I was a couple of streets away when I heard the blast, and that time I knew exactly what had happened. Like everybody else I went to see if I could help. It took only a couple of minutes to get there, but the police were already arriving and shouting for people to keep away. If you want the full description of the lingering smoke, the blood and the cries for help you will have to PM me. I can tell you some stuff which will really turn you on.

 
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Topic: Technical Support / What is the Best Gamer Laptop

A friend of mine has 4 children, aged 3 – 19, so there are laptops in the house. The little one just loves the noise the keyboards make when he runs his toy cars over them. I don’t think they have a single laptop without some keys missing. You don’t say how old your little brother is, but be assured that computers and small children are a very bad combination. So be very careful where you hide your hard-earned new acquisition if you want it to remain in one piece.

 
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Topic: Serious Discussion / Do you see nationalism as a good or bad thing?

Don’t forget territories and nations where we’ve “adjusted” the government. Making that argument is somewhat silly. Look at countries like Iraq and Panama. Those are regions that could easily provide us what we need, and we’ve already used military actions to “topple regimes” in charge.

That sounds very much like “might is right”. America can’t get away with the kind of stunts European empire builders pulled two hundred years ago. Are you seriously advocating invasion as the best way of adjusting your trade balance?

Fashion can be copied, and the “Made in the US” sticker means quality to many Americans, as well.

So America is to join the fake goods racket? There’s a big clamp-down on that, and America’s reputation as a manufacturer would be ruined. I doubt whether the boys on Capitol Hill will be very happy about that. And while Made in America may signify quality, it’s just not the same as a genuine Ferrari badge on the front of your car. It just isn’t.

Exactly, it can’t, which is why it needs to adopt protectionist trade practices to prevent itself from spending itself to death.

Eh? Can you expand on that a bit, because I just don’t see the logic of it.