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    1. When is comedy NOT at the consequence of something else's tragedy?

      Is there an example in sharing a comedy(amusing, causing laughter) NOT at the consequence of something else's tragedy(distress, suffering, downfall)...? Is there a funny story that doesn't...

      Is there an example in sharing a comedy(amusing, causing laughter) NOT at the consequence of something else's tragedy(distress, suffering, downfall)...?

      Is there a funny story that doesn't diminish an other?

      7 votes
    2. I just got back from a seven-day Buddhist silent meditation retreat. Ask me anything (or share your own experiences of meditation retreat)

      As I mentioned in the screenless day thread I was at Cloud Mountain in the woods between Seattle and Portland. This was my 3rd retreat there, and the longest that I've sat - the previous two that...

      As I mentioned in the screenless day thread

      I was at Cloud Mountain in the woods between Seattle and Portland. This was my 3rd retreat there, and the longest that I've sat - the previous two that I attended were 2 days and 5 days respectively.

      There were two teachers on the retreat, fully ordained Buddhist nuns in the Thai Forest tradition of Theravada Buddhism. Ayya Santacitta and Ayya Santussika were both wonderful.

      I spent 8-10 hours a day meditating, split between sitting and walking meditation. Other than that, I ate 2 or 3 really tasty vegetarian meals a day, skipping dinner on the last few days (Buddhist monastics were doing intermittent fasting way before it was cool - only eating between sunrise and mid-day). Dinner is always served, soup and bread, but the monks don't eat, and some retreatants skip it as well. And...not much else. Eat, meditate, sleep, repeat.

      It was very well done with respect to covid safety - we all wore masks and social distanced. Everyone on the retreat was vaccinated (and this retreat center is making it a requirement starting in September). They took a vote at the beginning that gave us the option of removing our masks since everyone was vaccinated, but the vote to take them off had to be unanimous and it wasn't, so we all continued to wear them while indoors.

      ping: @kfwyre and @cfabbro

      30 votes
    3. How do you think someone/people should be introduced to politics?

      There are very serious articles about young adolescents being radicalized into fascist movements and personal testimonials of such in YouTube, along with many videos, most commonly by leftists...

      There are very serious articles about young adolescents being radicalized into fascist movements and personal testimonials of such in YouTube, along with many videos, most commonly by leftists about how this works and very rarely a guess at what to do about it.

      There are also often memes about young people entering politics, like this video or this video assuming that and then satirizing how young, presumably privileged people when it comes to social matters (because otherwise bad personal experiences will inform your beliefs and this will be more than a poorly done intellectual exercise to you) flip flop between every political belief like it's nothing, alongside memes satirizing how young conservatives are introduced to their politics by edited clips of what are supposedly SJWs out of context and how farcically (distressingly) ridiculous it is to be introduced to your beliefs by these videos, especially when these sometimes real but extreme regardless examples of the left's presumed irrationality are much less harmful than the conservative extremes.

      A lot of this talk and memes concerns or satirizes radicalization of people after they've been politicized and occasionally in the case of the serious articles, what to do with it. But I feel this focuses more on the consequences, which is fine, but not everything worth looking at.

      So back to the title question, how do you think someone/people should be politicized?

      7 votes
    4. Anyone interested in a philosophical logic study group?

      Intermittently, for the past 15 years or so, logic has been an interest of mine. Back then I had trouble understanding exactly why certain things people said sounded so right/wrong, and how could...

      Intermittently, for the past 15 years or so, logic has been an interest of mine. Back then I had trouble understanding exactly why certain things people said sounded so right/wrong, and how could I come up with proper responses.

      Among others, in this time I've read one great book on informal logic (which I lost, unfortunately), quite a few articles, and studied the first chapters of the stupendous Gary Hardegree's symbolic logic.

      Even though I love the subject, it is hard to sustain motivation alone. I wish to acquire a firmer grasp of logic and its applications to philosophy. Hence the suggestion of forming a study group.


      It is my understanding that most Tilderinos are in STEM, especially areas surrounding computer science. So I anticipate that many users have an understanding of logic that greatly surpasses my own. Because of that, for some, a philosophical logic study group may seem too elementary to be of any value. Others may find it interesting to approach logic from a philosophical point of view.

      In any case, the idea is to start from scratch. Besides the ability to read and write in the English language, no previous knowledge is required. No mathematics either.


      I have two initial proposals.

      1. An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments

      This one is ideal for a light, relaxed approach.

      This awesome book describes 19 common logical fallacies using accessible language, with clear examples and suggestive illustrations. Not very technical, and a lot of it is well-known territory if you have an interest in logic. One chapter for each fallacy, each chapter is one page long. A great conversation starter.

      2. Symbolic Logic: A First Course, by Gary Hardegree

      I would choose this one myself. Hardegree is a wonderful teacher.

      This book is one of the best teaching materials I have ever known, and surprisingly superior even to paid alternatives. A more proper introduction to logic. Hardegree is an excellent teacher, introducing concepts with precision in accessible language. The progression is smooth, you never feel that the exercises are either too easy or too hard. And there are plenty of exercises (with answers!) which are great for self-study.


      We could start with either one of these books and follow from there. Just meeting once a week (or maybe biweekly) to discuss the chapter or chapter section we studied in that period.

      I understand a lot of people like to do that kind of stuff on Discord, so that's a possibility.

      5 votes
    5. Is it ethical for services to exclude those without internet access?

      I've been turning the question over in my mind since I read this article the other day. A company that delivers milk and basic groceries is moving to online-only billing and account management -...

      I've been turning the question over in my mind since I read this article the other day. A company that delivers milk and basic groceries is moving to online-only billing and account management - the article quotes various people who are "disgusted" that the company are cutting off their "elderly or vulnerable customers". It's one relatively niche example that raises a much broader question, and the idea of people still living without some form of internet access genuinely caught me by surprise.

      The UK has 94.6% internet penetration, relatively low costs (£10/month or less) for basic access, and a variety of subsidised schemes available for people to get basic hardware. That said, there are always gaps for people to fall through, and that last 5% still represents over three million people. At what point does it become reasonable to assume everybody is, or has the opportunity to be, online?

      20 votes
    6. What are your New Years intentions/resolutions? Why have you settled on them?

      I think we are all looking to 2021 as a bright spot after the last year has disrupted normal life for basically everyone. Is there anything you learned, or discovered about yourself, or found in...

      I think we are all looking to 2021 as a bright spot after the last year has disrupted normal life for basically everyone. Is there anything you learned, or discovered about yourself, or found in the your lockdown routine that you wish to carry forward? Perhaps something that you intend to leave in the "old" way of the world? I'll share my reflections below.


      This year has given me ample opportunity to reflect on the things that are valuable to me, particularly because of how much time I spent doing nothing. That isn't to say I wasted my time --- I moved to a across the US, started a new job working full time, spent 10 months of the year researching and writing my Master's thesis and subsequently defending, and started planning a wedding. It was a hectic year, and the downtime was critical.

      All of this culminates to the last few weeks, where I have gained tremendous clarity in two places. One, I was gifted this modern and straightforward Bible and another book about craftsmanship. I have found myself reading little sections of both each day. This is a practice I aim to continue through the New Year:

      • Reading something in a book, no matter how much or how little, and reflecting on it.

      The second item of clarity is that I really miss playing music. So,

      • I have decided to learn the piano.

      I was deeply steeped in concert music during high school, where my school's band played in national showcases and competitions. I practiced on average around 4-6 hours each day. I let that practice go in college, and am now keen to rekindle it. It helps that during the holiday season I am with my parents, who have an upright piano (that no one ever plays), so I can practice a bit before buying a keyboard of my own.

      So, with these intentions, I am not seeking to make radical changes in my life, but rather to spend 30-60 minutes on something that is deeply meaningful to me.

      28 votes
    7. Can anyone help me narrow down the definition of "gaslighting" to better make sense of it as a concept?

      I read the Wikipedia article about "gaslighting" and know it comes from a 1944 film of the same name in which an abusive husband gradually dims the gaslights at home – while denying doing so – to...

      I read the Wikipedia article about "gaslighting" and know it comes from a 1944 film of the same name in which an abusive husband gradually dims the gaslights at home – while denying doing so – to drive his wife mad.

      Yet whenever I see the term used (which happens a lot, lately) I can't make the connection. It seems people use it for the simple act of lying or denying something, which to me is mostly just... lying, not "gaslighting". Any kind of stupid, misguided act is getting the sinister "gaslighting" stamp as if it some 5d chess move when it simply looks like incompetence. The core principle of it seems to revolve around having a plan to psychologically manipulate someone but I mostly don't see the plan nor the actual goal. If anything untruthful you say about an important topic is "gaslighting", then the term doesn't seem to have a lot of value on its own. Wikipedia actually mentions "unconscious" gaslighting which seems to contradict its purpose of actually wanting to manipulate someone.

      So, given its popularity, I'm curious if there might be a (succinct) definition of the term that helps me understand it properly? Do you think it's just a trendy term to throw at politicians doing shit you don't like? Am I missing an important detail?

      17 votes
    8. How well did sci-fi predict the details of this pandemic?

      One of the favorite subjects of horror sci-fi — right up there with aliens, deadly asteroids and the machines taking over — has always been the deadly pandemic. One of the things I'm surprised at,...

      One of the favorite subjects of horror sci-fi — right up there with aliens, deadly asteroids and the machines taking over — has always been the deadly pandemic.

      One of the things I'm surprised at, is how close so many of those old sci-fi books and movies were. No, there are no zombies (...yet), no enraged psycho-killer chimps ... but on so many of the basics — how it spreads, the incredibly widespread piles of misinformation, all the ancillary political BS, right along with the courageous healthcare workers and medical researchers out there on the front lines, battling for a cure before it's too late ...

      and etc.

      How about a discussion thread to compare and contrast what the sci-fi got right, and wrong?


      ETA: Alternatively, if we've already had this conversation and I just missed it, somebody please point me in the right direction, and then never mind about this thread?

      11 votes
    9. Have you ever been discriminated against because of a disability (specifically mental illness?)

      Hey gang! So it has been a minute! I alluded to my plan to venture off into the woods in prior posts but didn't go into too much detail. Any who, I'm back but not on my own accord. The reason I...

      Hey gang!

      So it has been a minute! I alluded to my plan to venture off into the woods in prior posts but didn't go into too much detail. Any who, I'm back but not on my own accord.

      The reason I ask this question is because it just happened to me. I've struggled with depression and anxiety for going on 15 years, I've talked to a lot of people about it, gotten help, and received a lot of support over the years. I have never had it blow back in my face like it just did. Super long story kind of short:

      • I want to offer some context here, that not more than a week prior, my organization had a "getting vulnerable" meeting whereby we were asked (but not required) to share some information about ourselves with our crews. Crews worked and lived together in remote back country settings for months at a time, to be honest it went pretty well. I did not open up too much at the time as I had just met everybody, but eventually I got more comfortable.
      • I told the wrong person at my work, my direct supervisor (I was in no danger at any point during my employment, this information was given in a contextual fashion. Because we work so closely together for weeks at a time and also live together, these types of things tend to come out.)
      • They told the wrong people (management).
      • I was talked to for 5 hours in a closed door meeting with the top brass of the organization (read: interrogated and asked to give a comprehensive psychological background, even though I had already given them a topical briefing during the hiring process.)
      • I was pulled out of the field for liability reasons (I openly objected to this, saying that said field was best for my mental health.)
      • I was placed on an "in-town" crew that I did not want to join (I openly objected to this as well.)
      • I tried to exist on the new crew, but found it immediately and chronically untenable. My new coworkers were OK people, but the stark contrast in personalities between my old and new crew was jarring. Given our line and nature of work, this is super important and there's no way top brass didn't know about this. I voiced this and once again requested to be placed back in the back country at a base camp, I was ignored.
      • My mental health began to catch up to me. I did not like my position in life or at work, having to live in the city which is something I came out here to entirely avoid was crushing any and all morale I tried to work up.
      • The writing was on the wall. I didn't like it there anymore, and my employer didn't seem to care (despite their claims) about where I was within the organization.
      • I voluntarily resigned due to mental health reasons rather than just walk out. The urge to entirely burn this bridge and emphatically explain to them why what they did was so improper was incredibly strong, but I decided not to. This organization is a big name in our field and the field isn't all that big, they stated that I'd be welcome back, I'd sooner clean a peanut butter covered shag carpet with my tongue.

      The general mood and sentiment during all of my conversations with staff members could be described as tense. The way in which I was treated during all of those meetings was as though I was a conglomeration of suicidal, homicidal and a direct threat to anybody near me. I could literally see their brains doing very careful dance numbers as they walked over what they thought were eggshells, when at no point was that the case in my view. Their actions, disguised as being motivated by empathy, came straight out of the Harvard Business School of Cover Your Ass. At one point they mentioned they had a psychologist on retainer that they were consulting. I have seen so many damn therapists, psychiatrists, psychologists, shrinks and every other name in the book over 15 years. I have never met one that would ever make any absolute statements or suggest any concrete actions before even meeting a patient. Their inability to even empathize with what I had been going through was apparent. At no point did they seem to consider the human in the room, it was always "we appreciate what you bring", "you are a good resource to have", and the worst of all "we hear you, but..." Holy fuck the lingering but was bad. "I'm not racist, but...", dude sit the fuck down.

      So that happened within a week or so. There's quite a few more details but I don't want to make the entire point of this post to rant (even though that's what it has turned into.) I am now jobless, homeless as housing was through my work, in an entirely new city to me and floating on savings. It's not too bad to be honest. This is not my first homeless (hobo, vagabond, rubber tramp) experience/adventure, I'm not financially comfortable (I'm on borrowed time) but I'm not broke and honestly I'm in a good place mentally. I've been camping in the woods and I've got everything I need to survive. I'm even super involved in a local activist group, if that's any testament to how comfortable I've become in my current position.

      So, does this sound familiar to anybody here? Have you been discriminated against in this fashion? How'd you react? Cope? Where did you go from there? I'd like to hear from others to simply know I'm not alone in this bullshit. I've been in support groups for mental health, and other reasons, but I've never realized the need for this subset of people to seek support. It's been 10 days now and I'm honestly still in shock.

      Feel free to get as vulnerable as you want, I won't tell your fucking inept boss.

      20 votes
    10. Podcast discussions & recommendations! What are you listening to?

      Tildes has had a couple of threads about podcast recommendations in the past, but most of them are over 18 months old now, and podcasts are always evolving, and we have new members who may not...

      Tildes has had a couple of threads about podcast recommendations in the past, but most of them are over 18 months old now, and podcasts are always evolving, and we have new members who may not have participated in those threads before—I certainly only picked up podcasts in the last few months.

      So. Three questions!

      • What podcasts are you listening to?
      • What podcasts have you dropped, or picked up, in that time?
      • If you had to recommend a couple of podcasts to others, which shows would you pick? Why do you recommend them? Got a favourite episode?
      28 votes
    11. Is a YouTube video with a static image technically a podcast?

      My brother and I have been going at it on if a YouTube channel puts out a video, based around a conversation with either a static image or a simple eye catch behind it, can it be considered a...

      My brother and I have been going at it on if a YouTube channel puts out a video, based around a conversation with either a static image or a simple eye catch behind it, can it be considered a podcast? I'm of the opinion that a podcast is a podcast because it's an audio file, in an aggregator, that can be downloaded to a portable device with minimal fuss. He's of the opinion that the content makes a podcast, and if all podcast aggregators suddenly go under, any audio files with album art uploaded to YouTube would be considered indistinguishable from podcasts, so podcasts can live exclusively in the YouTube space and still be considered a podcast.

      Does anyone else have a take on this? Can I use Tildes to definitively prove my brother wrong?

      12 votes
    12. You are going to live in a rustic cabin in the mountains for 4 months. What do you bring?

      This is a scenario question similar to the "You are stranded on a deserted island, what do you bring?" question. The following guidelines I offer stem from my planning and experiences, I begin my...

      This is a scenario question similar to the "You are stranded on a deserted island, what do you bring?" question. The following guidelines I offer stem from my planning and experiences, I begin my 4 months shortly.

      • There is no electricity, no running water, no plumbing, no cell phone service nor internet service.
      • US Postal Service is available.
      • It is about 45 minutes away from the nearest town and is located on United States Forest Service owned land.
      • You will be sharing the cabin with several other like-minded people that you've never met before in a roommate dynamic.
      • The accommodations are free through the program.
      • This program runs a 9 days on, 5 days off work schedule. For the 9 days on, you will be camping along trails you are maintaining and not be at the cabin.
      • Basic food storage (coolers), a solar shower, washboards and tables will be provided.

      What do you bring? For functionality? To maintain comfort and/or sanity? Entertainment purposes? Keep in mind the point of this experience is to remove yourself from the grid, expose yourself to the rawness of nature and the elements. While it's tempting to say you'd bring a $10k solar/battery array, download all the things, and just host 5 day binge watching sessions with the bears, that's not the purpose. ;)

      16 votes
    13. How could we regulate biased/lying media outlets and aggregators without encroaching on good ones?

      I find this to be a pretty important question when news organizations like Fox News are literally aiming to help the Republican Party to stay on power, CNN and MSNBC promote centrist candidates...

      I find this to be a pretty important question when news organizations like Fox News are literally aiming to help the Republican Party to stay on power, CNN and MSNBC promote centrist candidates and media aggregators ranging from r/the_donald to r/chapotraphouse banning anyone who opposes them. Thing is, these are the most well known examples. How could we tell faulty media sources and aggregators apart from good ones in mass? Do you think that's possible?

      15 votes
    14. How would you kill Hitler?

      The mission You have been tasked with the mission to kill Hitler. The mission is mandatory and you cannot decline it. You have access to a state of the art time machine: a simple Casio wristwatch...

      The mission

      You have been tasked with the mission to kill Hitler. The mission is mandatory and you cannot decline it. You have access to a state of the art time machine: a simple Casio wristwatch in which you enter the time, date and location where you wanna travel to. It can travel to any point in past Earth's history, and it is programmed to automatically and safely return you to the present time as soon as the mission is completed.

      You have access to all weapons available to humankind in the present day, but you can only take what you can carry.

      You also have access to technology that will make you look ethnically German complete with Nazi uniforms, and a perfectly functioning universal translator.

      How this thread will work

      I will try to come up with a negative outcome for every answer in jackass genie style. Others are welcome to do the same!

      22 votes
    15. Potential issues with catch-all terms for all non-white races?

      I was just thinking about this. It has no basis in evidence or anything, it just popped into my head. Could using terms like POC that are catch-alls for all non-white races cause a rift between...

      I was just thinking about this. It has no basis in evidence or anything, it just popped into my head. Could using terms like POC that are catch-alls for all non-white races cause a rift between white people and POC? I feel like it has the potential to create a kind of "us VS. them" mentality if it hasn't already. Because it's saying you have all the races in the world, and then you have white people. I don't really have an alternative or a solution. It was just an observation I made. Of course, me being white myself, maybe there's just something I'm not understanding. I think it could spark an interesting discussion because people are bound to have many different opinions on this subject.

      22 votes
    16. Privacy and Politics

      I was thinking about the intersection of internet privacy and politics. You could even say I was having a bit of a mini-crisis. I like to think of myself as being pretty liberal, but I wondering...

      I was thinking about the intersection of internet privacy and politics. You could even say I was having a bit of a mini-crisis. I like to think of myself as being pretty liberal, but I wondering how that fits into privacy. I was a little upset when I learned that Obama called Edward Snowden unpatriotic. I was kind of thinking that what he did was patriotic. Wasn't the NSA monitoring US citizens without warrants. That's morally wrong right? I think I would be pretty fine with the government monitoring someone if they had a warrant given to them by a non-secret court. I'm wondering if anyone here can give me some insight on this or if anyone else feels/has felt this way.

      4 votes
    17. Talking about identity/cultural appropriation, how to navigate life?

      DISCLAIMER: The reason I’m writing it is that there are some things I’m afraid to ask IRL to not be labeled as “not woke enough” but I honestly want to learn the whys and hows of some things....

      DISCLAIMER: The reason I’m writing it is that there are some things I’m afraid to ask IRL to not be labeled as “not woke enough” but I honestly want to learn the whys and hows of some things. Incidentally that’s something I think could be improved in “leftist” circles, because if people feel they can’t say things but don’t get chances to actually change their minds it’s just a bandage and not a solution IMHO (plus this whole idea that people have to be perfect and not make a single mistake is really counterproductive I think). On the other hand, I understand it’s not the job of a minority/oppressed population to educate the “other”, but at this point, my questions are mainly in the edges and all the info I see online is actually not consistent. Hopefully, I won’t say anything horribly wrong lol.

      1. My first “friction” is with the whole concept of cultural appropriation. I don't know if you've read the Cosmopolitan article on "don't dress your kid as Moana this Halloween". But that article pointed to another article by a Fiji woman that said it's OK to dress as Moana as long as you don't try to copy traditional garbs, etc.. I usually understand the points of view but in this case (as well as in the recent case of the qipao) it seems that even the affected people don't agree on the gravity of the thing. I've also seen discussions on whether it's appropriate for a white kid to dress up as The Black Panther (obv no blackface) and I've seen more white people saying it's "cultural appropriation" than black people saying that. There are some blatant cases like blackface, or wearing religious/spiritual stuff to a party, or using the “n” word, and it's obvious to me why shouldn’t they be done, but other cases seem to be more about “well if you’re doing this and you’re only doing because it’s cool then it’s bad”. Which I can relate to but yeah, it doesn’t feel very productive.

      My usual approach with cultural appropriation and correct behavior is “I’ll do it if I think it’s not offensive and if someone complains or tells me it is offensive I’ll learn and not do it again or ask for permission” (for example I give dap to some black friends who initiated it, but I won’t give dap to a random person I just met). How do you navigate this? How do you navigate the pieces of your identity that you feel are misrepresented (and sometimes ridiculed) and how do you navigate your interpretations of other identities? Since I’m asking controversial stuff, could someone explain to me why drag isn’t offensive? Isn’t it men dressing up as women and taking feminine stereotypes to the extreme? Like, I enjoy RuPaul but I’m always wondering why people find it cool.

      1. Speaking of identity, what forms an identity? I mean, if I start going deep then I am the only person with my identity, and I have problems and people hurt me and I hurt people, but we usually get around it by talking, empathizing, and not assuming the worst of each other all the time. But if I look at certain pieces of my identity: I’m poor, I grew up in a violent city, I had to be ultramasculine to survive, I am a woman, I am not white, I have a disability, I have BPD, I know how to code… In each of these facets I have reasons to feel “oppressed” or “guilty”, to feel like I’m a “victim” or to feel like I’m an “oppressor”. But none of these thoughts really give me much to do about it other than masturbating to my self-pity or self-righteousness. Furthermore, whatever all the things I am I’m also a member of a society that I think has the potential to get better if we all row together. So how do we combine the fact that we are all individuals but at the same time we have all these identities that make us feel angry/sad/guilty and at the same time we’re all in the same boat? How do you deal with this?

      OK I have many more questions but maybe this is enough for now… Again, I appreciate your understanding and your help!

      17 votes
    18. Can a company lie in their privacy policy?

      Maybe I'm just not very well versed in this sort of thing but I couldn't find anything online. I've always been sort of paranoid that a company might not be truthful in their privacy policy. Is...

      Maybe I'm just not very well versed in this sort of thing but I couldn't find anything online. I've always been sort of paranoid that a company might not be truthful in their privacy policy. Is there any sort of law to keep them honest or do we just have to take their word on it?

      11 votes
    19. People who ask "are you pregnant?"

      Why? Quick story: I was in an elevator with a coworker I didn't really know and he told me a story of when he asked a stranger in a restaurant if she were pregnant. She was not! And he said he was...

      Why?

      Quick story: I was in an elevator with a coworker I didn't really know and he told me a story of when he asked a stranger in a restaurant if she were pregnant. She was not! And he said he was so embarrassed that he had to leave.

      I didn't get a chance to ask him, so I'm asking you fellow tilderinos - why ask this question at all? Especially to a stranger? What motivates this question? Is it really asking why someone looks fat?

      Have you been on the receiving end of this question? (If you're a women older than 25, I'm going to guess yes). What are your stories?

      15 votes