Funny events in anti-woke world

Ag3ma

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Interesting little titbit.

HS2 was the attempt to introduce a high speed rail network to the UK, initially intended to link London, Birmingham (the second largest city in England, in the Midlands) and Manchester (the main city of Northern England). Later extensions then planned to other major cities - Leeds, Sheffield, Liverpool, etc. The decision is in, and only the London - Birmingham section is to be built.

It's been an utter clusterfuck, because of the UK's constitutional inability to build infrastructure projects at a reasonable cost, in good time, and without substantial cost overruns even on the obscene initial cost. (Note here - the UK spent more building a 14-mile main road across a plain than Norway spent built on the same distance of road despite having to dig a tunnel through a mountain). Just to add to the hilarity, the London link doesn't even go to the requisite main station (Euston) and will stop 10 miles away and require switching to local services, meaning that to get from Birmingham to Central London will take longer on the high speed rail than the current basic one.

So, with the cost ballooning to frankly epic proportions, HS2 (or at least part of it) being cancelled was hardly a surprise. What is interesting is that the Tory government is selling off much of the land it had procured to build it between Birmingham and Manchester - effectively making it impossible for any future government to resurrect the project in the short-medium term. This is blatant sabotage of any future aspirations to resurrect HS2.

My other point here is a sort of argument "fuck London", because this stinks of the usual London-centric attitude of the government. There is no reason a new high-speed rail network ever had to start with London. It could have been set up linking the major northern cities (Liverpool - Manchester - Leeds plus others) which are badly in need of the improved transport, and then been done bit by bit out north to Newcastle, Edinburgh and Glasgow, and south to the Midlands and London. But fundamentally, our hopelessly broken politics cannot conceive of anything exciting, new and shiny not involving London. To be fair, the money earmarked for HS2 north is allegedly to be ploughed into alternative transport improvements for northern cities instead. Although I'm willing to bet a lot of that is creatively redistributed to the south of England anyway.

What a bunch of scumbags.

Although as the miserable, Tory conference goes, nothing equals Tory leadership hopeful Suella Braverman, who spat out nearly 30 minutes of sheer poison, taking this country back towards the rhetoric of Enoch Powell with barely a whimper of objection from her colleagues.
 

Silvanus

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What is interesting is that the Tory government is selling off much of the land it had procured to build it between Birmingham and Manchester - effectively making it impossible for any future government to resurrect the project in the short-medium term. This is blatant sabotage of any future aspirations to resurrect HS2.
There's an even more despairing little detail to this. The government has conceded that it will need to pay hundreds of millions to the companies that were granted contracts that will now never see fruition. And they've also said the amount they'll make from the sale of land is... expected to about balance out the cost of end-of-contract outgoing payments.

So not only did they put through compulsory purchases to take land from its owners at a fraction of its value. And not only are they now selling it, so the land cannot be used either by its original owners or for its earmarked purpose at sale. But to add injury to injury, the government won't even make money back overall, because of the massive additional costs of contract termination.
 
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tstorm823

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That's. Not. What. He. Said. He said they do not stop AIDS at all. If we were to compare it with cigarette filters, the correct analogy would be him stating that cigarette filters do nothing to the smoke that goes through a cigarette, so there's zero point in having them.
" These margins of uncertainty ... should represent an obligation on the part of the health ministries and all these campaigns to act in the same way as they do with regard to cigarettes, which they state to be a danger. "

Unfortunately, we'll probably never know his full statement, we have only what the BBC decided was worth airing. But if you'd like to read the man defending his own statements, here's a 10,000 word essay with 87 sources on the topic.
" In that interview I warned about “safe sex”, stating that one cannot truly speak of objective and total protection by using the condom as a prophylactic,[3] when it comes to the transmission not only of HIV/AIDS "

" In addition, FDA requires manufacturers to use a water test to examine samples from each batch of condoms for leakage. If the test detects a defect rate of more than 4 per 1,000, the entire lot is discarded. The agency also encourages manufacturers to test samples of their products for breakage by using an air burst test in accordance with specifications of the International Standards Organization.”[44] If four leaking condoms are allowed in every batch of 1,000, there could be hundreds of thousands or even millions of leaking condoms circulating all over the world, either sold or distributed for free, and most probably contributing to the spread of HIV/AIDS and STD’s. Does the public know this? "

I sincerely hope part of you is at least considering the possibility that you've been misled abut this.
 

Silvanus

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" These margins of uncertainty ... should represent an obligation on the part of the health ministries and all these campaigns to act in the same way as they do with regard to cigarettes, which they state to be a danger. "

Unfortunately, we'll probably never know his full statement, we have only what the BBC decided was worth airing. But if you'd like to read the man defending his own statements, here's a 10,000 word essay with 87 sources on the topic.
" In that interview I warned about “safe sex”, stating that one cannot truly speak of objective and total protection by using the condom as a prophylactic,[3] when it comes to the transmission not only of HIV/AIDS "

" In addition, FDA requires manufacturers to use a water test to examine samples from each batch of condoms for leakage. If the test detects a defect rate of more than 4 per 1,000, the entire lot is discarded. The agency also encourages manufacturers to test samples of their products for breakage by using an air burst test in accordance with specifications of the International Standards Organization.”[44] If four leaking condoms are allowed in every batch of 1,000, there could be hundreds of thousands or even millions of leaking condoms circulating all over the world, either sold or distributed for free, and most probably contributing to the spread of HIV/AIDS and STD’s. Does the public know this? "

I sincerely hope part of you is at least considering the possibility that you've been misled abut this.
What you've provided here is the man himself trying to cynically rewrite his prior statement, and backtracking on the substance of it while not admitting error. Yet we have his original words to look at and judge on their own merit.

He said the spermatazoon passes easily through the "net" of a condom, and that HIV does too. He didn't say "very occasionally this is possible". He didn't say "a few times every thousand"-- these are massive, substance-changing caveats he added during the rewrite. Originally: He said it goes "easily" straight through. This is categorically and inarguably wrong, dangerous misinformation, and monstrously stupid.

I sincerely hope part of you is considering dropping the defence of explicit disinformation solely because it came from a Catholic authority.
 
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tstorm823

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What you've provided here is the man himself trying to cynically rewrite his prior statement, and backtracking on the substance of it while not admitting error. Yet we have his original words to look at and judge on their own merit.

He said the spermatazoon passes easily through the "net" of a condom, and that HIV does too. He didn't say "very occasionally this is possible". He didn't say "a few times every thousand"-- these are caveats he added during the rewrite. Originally: He said it goes "easily" straight through. This is categorically and inarguably wrong, dangerous misinformation, and monstrously stupid.

I sincerely hope part of you is considering dropping the defence of explicit disinformation solely because it came from a Catholic authority.
You're just going to ignore that he said "margins of uncertainty" in the broadcast? You're just ignoring it? He didn't say "very occassionally", but he said "margins of uncertainty". You know what the word "margin" means, right? The edge. He's referencing edge cases in his original statement. If you interpret that as "condoms don't do anything", that's your fault, not his.
 

Ag3ma

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There's an even more despairing little detail to this. The government has conceded that it will need to pay hundreds of millions to the companies that were granted contracts that will now never see fruition. And they've also said the amount they'll make from the sale of land is... expected to about balance out the cost of end-of-contract outgoing payments.

So not only did they put through compulsory purchases to take land from its owners at a fraction of its value. And not only are they now selling it, so the land cannot be used either by its original owners or for its earmarked purpose at sale. But to add injury to injury, the government won't even make money back overall, because of the massive additional costs of contract termination.
I was having a read of why the UK finds it so hard to build things at a reasonable price. One takeaway of an analyst's piece I read is that the UK has a problem with nimbyism. Instead of just, well, trampling over people's stuff, they get bogged down in constant compromises and modifications, all of which force revised planning, increased time, and changes (tunnels, alternative routes, etc.) that cost additional money to carry out. The costs rapidly start mounting up.

On this note, it said that the only major developed country worse than the UK for infrastructure costs was the USA: which has exactly the same problem, but worse.

Other major issues are lack of joined-up thinking and shared operations. For instance, in France, several cities banded together to set up tram systems and the unified operation cut costs enormously. In the UK, cities have gone it alone ad hoc with individual bids and different technologies so they've literally paid the price for doing so.

I do have mixed feelings about the nimbyism thing. Sure, wiping out people's green fields and property is a difficult topic. But on the other hand, sometimes important stuff just needs to get done on a reasonable budget.
 

Baffle

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I do have mixed feelings about the nimbyism thing. Sure, wiping out people's green fields and property is a difficult topic. But on the other hand, sometimes important stuff just needs to get done on a reasonable budget.
NIMBYism is a plague in the UK (we need more houses but..., we need more renewables but..., and the massive fuckup that is HS2 has given every NIMBY all the ammunition they'll ever need.
 

Silvanus

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You're just going to ignore that he said "margins of uncertainty" in the broadcast? You're just ignoring it? He didn't say "very occassionally", but he said "margins of uncertainty". You know what the word "margin" means, right? The edge. He's referencing edge cases in his original statement. If you interpret that as "condoms don't do anything", that's your fault, not his.
"Margin of uncertainty", like "Margin of error", absolutely does not mean "edge cases".

A "margin" is often roughly equivalent to the "edge" in typography only, although even then the margin can effectively take up the majority of the space. In other uses-- such as statistics and data-- it refers to the gap between two details or sets, which can be of any size. Hence "profit margin", which is very obviously not just the "edge" of an item's cost.

The terms "margin of error" and "margin of uncertainty" are statistical terms. They refer to the gap between a datapoint's reported value and the reasonable extreme possibilities on either side. This does not mean "edge cases": the margin of uncertainty can be enormous depending on the process behind the calculation of the datapoint.

And since we're talking about condoms, where manufacturers already include caveats about how they're only 98% effective, and since we're talking about a man stating that spermatazoons and HIV "pass easily through" a condom, it's obvious to anyone approaching this honestly that he's not just talking about "edge cases".

This might be the weakest quibble yet. What he said was bollocks. Sperm do not easily pass through a condom. Acknowledge that what he said was false.
 

The Rogue Wolf

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Jesus Christ, as depicted in the fake courtroom sketch Trump reposted. Photo: @dom_lucre/X

While Donald Trump is responsible for unhinged, incoherent content on Truth Social every single day, an image he posted on Monday evening stood out for being especially offensive and delusional. Tucked between video clips of Trump’s remarks hours earlier outside a Manhattan courtroom, where he is being tried for fraud in a civil lawsuit brought by New York attorney general Letitia James, was a screenshot of a tweet from user Dom Lucre showing a fake courtroom sketch of Jesus by Trump’s side.

The image is ridiculous, blasphemous, and confusing. Is Jesus supposed to be Trump’s co-defendant or his attorney? Does the caption “nobody could have made it this far alone” mean Trump being hauled before the court for his decades of alleged business fraud is part of some divine plan? And who is this “Dom Lucre” anyway?
Ah, yes, Republican Jesus: White, stern and angry.
 
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Ag3ma

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You're just going to ignore that he said "margins of uncertainty" in the broadcast? You're just ignoring it? He didn't say "very occassionally", but he said "margins of uncertainty". You know what the word "margin" means, right? The edge. He's referencing edge cases in his original statement. If you interpret that as "condoms don't do anything", that's your fault, not his.
You are as you so frequently do metaphorically attempting not see the forest by trying to dispute a few individual trees.
 

Chimpzy

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NIMBYism is a plague in the UK (we need more houses but..., we need more renewables but..., and the massive fuckup that is HS2 has given every NIMBY all the ammunition they'll ever need.
Not just the UK, or US. Just this week, this lady with a bunch of kids in tow came up to me and asked me if I wanted to sign a petition against the construction of wind turbines about half a dozen kilometers down the freeway that also runs near where I live. She went on this tribe on this diatribe about how the turbines were going to be only a 100m from her doorstep, and so noisy, and the blades would blot out the sun, and whatnot

I told her I wouldn't sign.

She asked why I wouldn't help people.

I replied saying I was, that everyone needs electric power.

She said "I see how it is" and marched off in a huff.

Though that wasn't the only reason I refused. There are also turbines near where I live, in between the freeway and my building, and I also know the street she proclaims to live on, and where it is in relation to where the turbines are supposed to be built and that same freeway. It's how I know her story was full of shit.
 
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Ag3ma

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NIMBYism is a plague in the UK (we need more houses but..., we need more renewables but..., and the massive fuckup that is HS2 has given every NIMBY all the ammunition they'll ever need.
The government should have just run train tracks through their constituencies and told them to lump it. Fuck your pretty view, and fuck your pleasant wood, and fuck you never having to hear a train in the distance. But this is middle-affluent Tory England, and so suddenly they care about this stuff. (If you're poor, they won't even ensure the high-rise you're living in has proper fire-resistant cladding, and if burning to death bothers you, you can pay the tower owner to make it safe.)
 
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Baffle

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Not just the UK, or US. Just this week, this lady with a bunch of kids in tow came up to me and asked me if I wanted to sign a petition against the construction of wind turbines about half a dozen kilometers down the freeway that also runs near where I live. She went on this tribe on this diatribe about how the turbines were going to be only a 100m from her doorstep, and so noisy, and the blades would blot out the sun, and whatnot

I told her I wouldn't sign.

She asked why I wouldn't help people.

I replied saying I was, that everyone needs electric power.

She said "I see how it is" and marched off in a huff.

Though that wasn't the only reason I refused. There are also turbines near where I live, in between the freeway and my building, and I also know the street she proclaims to live on, and where it is in relation to where the turbines are supposed to be built and that same freeway. It's how I know her story was full of shit.
The key to winning any argument on these lines is to say it's to help homeless veterans, they're everyone's favourite cause.
 

Ag3ma

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Not just the UK, or US. Just this week, this lady with a bunch of kids in tow came up to me and asked me if I wanted to sign a petition against the construction of wind turbines about half a dozen kilometers down the freeway that also runs near where I live. She went on this tribe on this diatribe about how the turbines were going to be only a 100m from her doorstep, and so noisy, and the blades would blot out the sun, and whatnot
They've been looking at traffic schemes for my area to reduce congestion and make the streets safer.

I can't help but notice that the road that got the most benefit from initial plans was the particularly affluent road, which purely coincidentally several local bigwigs live in, including two of the people involved with the council planning it. My road was conveniently designated at one fit for all the traffic to go down, at least on the first iteration. It's funny how the people on the rich street were keen to persuade us of the benefits, as cars continued pouring down ours whilst theirs was blocked at one end and their kids played footie in the blissful quiet.

I actually really appreciate the idea of a traffic scheme, and I'm prepared to put up with some inconvenience for an overall advantage for the region. But much less so when the plan transparently seems to maximise the benefits for the people with the most money and connections.

Edit: One thing to note about the "rich street" is that they had new LED lighting and lamps installed about 10 years ago that minimise light pollution (especially through windows on the second storey and, where relevant, higher). A couple of years back I noticed the lamps had been replaced with fancy, decorative Victorian-style lamps. Wowzer. Two lamp changes in 10 years? I hope the council wasn't paying for that. Other more affluent roads have the newer reduced light pollution lamps. Ours, of course, still has the crappy old 20th century ones where if you don't have thick curtains you can almost read a book at night with the bedroom lights off.
 
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Ag3ma

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I thought I'd share this comment from Steam on a game discussion forum. I know it's just a random person and it's unfair to expect genius, but it is hilarious.

Dear development team.
I feel the greatest admiration for the work you are doing, both the period you are representing (1930) and the universe based on H. P. Lovecraft seem impressive and sublime to me, a complete visual delight that has captured and caught my attention from the first moment.

I am in favor of diversity, something totally necessary that today we are lucky that both games and television are being included, although certainly not everyone does it in the same way and this is where, after admiring the content that you have published, I have the following doubts.
Although I am in favor of diversity, I am not in favor of forced diversity. By this I mean. Have the characters been freely designed by the artists without imposing a series of rules or guidelines to comply with?
Several things seem strange to me when contemplating the squad of heroes that will accompany us on the adventure.

- The first thing is that each character seems to be of a nationality. Does this have a logical explanation within the game? It is strange this situation, especially in 1930.
-The second thing, we are in 1930 and we are facing a team of adventurers/mercenaries, given the time, it is to be expected that the majority are men, but if we look at the squad we see that there are 7 women and 4 men. Something that seems strange. Are we facing a work like Alien the Eighth Passenger or Night of the living dead (1990)?, where equality and diversity are defended or will it be more similar to Terminator Dark Fate, a great movie, but necessarily extrogenated to adjust to the movements political-social of the moment.
-Third, most of the characters are women, but if we look at them, they all seem to have the same body except Judith and none of them have big breasts, it makes me think that some rules or guidelines have been established for designers to adjust to pre-established canons.

Perhaps all this can be seen like unimportant things, although for me they are not, since limiting the freedom of artists is something that I don't like and that warns us of the type of decisions that are taken to all aspects of the game, how is the plot and dialogues that we will see in this, including the skills of the characters and their roles.
I hope you can give me an answer that shows me I'm wrong.

Thanks in advance for any comments or constructive responses.
All the best.
 
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Chimpzy

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The key to winning any argument on these lines is to say it's to help homeless veterans, they're everyone's favourite cause.
Not over here. We don't have much veneration for the military. Only the fascist party gives a shit about veterans of any kind, but only for propaganda purposes, not in any way that would actually help any veterans in need of aid.
They've been looking at traffic schemes for my area to reduce congestion and make the streets safer.

I can't help but notice that the road that got the most benefit from initial plans was the particularly affluent road, which purely coincidentally several local bigwigs live in, including two of the people involved with the council planning it. My road was conveniently designated at one fit for all the traffic to go down, at least on the first iteration. It's funny how the people on the rich street were keen to persuade us of the benefits, as cars continued pouring down ours whilst theirs was blocked at one end and their kids played footie in the blissful quiet.

I actually really appreciate the idea of a traffic scheme, and I'm prepared to put up with some inconvenience for an overall advantage for the region. But much less so when the plan transparently seems to maximise the benefits for the people with the most money and connections.
Reminds me of a similar story here. A year or so back there was a bee keeper who wanted to buy a plot of land further down the street and put a honey farm on it, in particular a number of greenhouses and a small storefront/office. Because he wanted to buy that land for the purpose of building a business, our zoning laws required him to publicly post his plans at city hall and residents were allowed a certain period to file objections.

Sometime later we got invitation in the mail for a neighborhood meeting at a local small event venue to have a 'dialogue' on whether or not the farm should be allowed. Though it wasn't really much of a dialogue, so much as a local bigwig who coincidentally also owns that venue getting on his soapbox, and warning us how the farm would bring constant lorry traffic to the street, and there would be bees everywhere, and they would get aggressive and swarm people, and all kinds of nonsense. When he was done he asked us to sign pre-filled objection documents, against the farm of course, that he would bring to city hall for us. How magnanimous.

Unfortunately for him it failed spectacularly. His couple sycophants and the local massive NYMBYs signed, but most told him to proverbially shove it. Partially because of his obvious fearmongering. Partially because it was an open secret that he wanted that plot of land, as well as some others that still have residents, and his strong-arm tactics in trying to get them to sell had made him not particularly liked around here.

Anyway, honey farm is now operational. Haven't noticed an increase in traffic. Do notice more bees. But that's ok, more bees is good. Also still less bees that I was used to seeing when I was wee lad. Bought some of his honey. It was delicious.
 
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Baffle

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I thought I'd share this comment from Steam on a game discussion forum. I know it's just a random person and it's unfair to expect genius, but it is hilarious.
"These tits ain't big enough, there's been some free speech suppression somewhere in here and no one's going home until we've got to the bottom of it."
 
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Baffle

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Not over here. We don't have much veneration for the military. Only the fascist party gives a shit about veterans of any kind, but only for propaganda purposes, not in any way that would actually help any veterans in need of aid.
Oh no, it's exactly the same here. Homeless veterans are just a shield for why you can't do x. They can't risk helping the homeless veterans, because then the shield would be gone.
 

Ag3ma

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"These tits ain't big enough, there's been some free speech suppression somewhere in here and no one's going home until we've got to the bottom of it."
I love the patient, reasoned and verbose explanation of their thoughts, only to end up sort of saying "Can't I have some massive titties to gawp at?"
 
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