When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

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iguanamon
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby iguanamon » Thu Jul 16, 2020 1:53 pm

Ultimately, this forum is about language-learning. Most of us have nobody outside of here with whom we can discuss languages and self-learning them who know what we are talking about and can respond intelligently. Back on HTLAL, FX laid out the no religion/politics discussion and, for the most part, it helped to keep the forum a nice place to be. That policy came with us when we migrated to here.

There are umpteen thousands of places to go on the web to discuss conspiracy theories to one's heart's content. Here we're about languages. Over the years, we long term members become familiar with each other. Our opinions and views get across despite the ban. This would be a pretty harsh place if the ban were enforced in a hard core manner. Some leeway is granted and I am grateful for that. So, in this way, we get to know each other to a certain extent... but it's not a full familiarity as if we were business colleagues, neighbors or friends irl. My point being that whatever familiarity we have doesn't mean we should be here trying to convince each other of our opinions or views. We don't know each other that well despite our longevity on the forum. That's a good thing. I don't need or want to know that someone holds opinions and views about life that are diametrically opposed to my own. I want you to tell me how best to learn a language and give me tips. I want you to tell me what you are doing to learn X language and how you go about it. I want to know what you've tried and what's worked and what didn't and why. I don't need or want members to tell me how I should think or that I need to open my eyes to what's going on out there. I can figure that out on my own, thanks.

Even if massive exposure to native materials works for me and anki doesn't, it doesn't mean I should be trying to convince people that what works for them is wrong and they should come over to my way of thinking. Beginners seeking advice is another thing. They are asking. We should provide and ultimately they can decide. We are best served in regards to language-learning and life by being examples of our beliefs, views and opinions rather than dictators or proselytizers of those beliefs, views and opinion- no matter how much we may believe in them. Convincing people of rightness isn't going to happen by posting links.

Some opinions are facts: 2+2=4 all day long. I may believe that 2+2=97 but that doesn't make it true no matter how much I believe it to be. We are entitled to our own opinions but not our own facts. We must be educated enough to be able to distinguish fact from opinion. Few facts are as easy to prove as mathematics, in most fields, there will never be 100% certitude, but beware when there is >90% certitude in advocating for the <10% incertitude.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby tastyonions » Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:33 pm

I am sorry for using the particular nasty language I did but I don't regret my general tone. I believe in freedom of speech, even for ideas I consider dangerous and contemptible, but I also believe in calling things what they are. I wouldn't have a genteel, congenial discussion about the pros and cons of encouraging kids to drink bleach and pretend that both sides of the issue were worth considering, and I think that to do so on this topic at a time like this is equally as farcical and irresponsible.

For that reason, in order to keep the atmosphere amicable here I will try my best to avoid engaging this subject if it comes up again in the future.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby lavengro » Thu Jul 16, 2020 2:53 pm

I was not planning on posting further on this thread, but....

tastyonions wrote:.... I wouldn't have a genteel, congenial discussion about the pros and cons of encouraging kids to drink bleach and pretend that both sides of the issue were worth considering, and I think that to do so on this topic at a time like this is equally as farcical and irresponsible.

For that reason, in order to keep the atmosphere amicable here I will try my best to avoid engaging this subject if it comes up again in the future.

When did a discussion of the pros and cons of encouraging kids to drink bleach arise in this thread? Lord knows I am a big fan of a well-crafted strawman, but this is a little beyond the pale.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby tastyonions » Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:04 pm

lavengro wrote:When did a discussion of the pros and cons of encouraging kids to drink bleach arise in this thread? Lord knows I am a big fan of a well-crafted strawman, but this is a little beyond the pale.

Denialism and conspiracy theories can range anywhere from being mostly harmless and amusing (flat earth advocates, moon landing "truthers") to deadly (AIDs denial or bleach as a cure for autism, for example). Clearly you don't agree that coronavirus denialism sits on the latter end of the spectrum.

Ideas have consequences.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby lavengro » Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:20 pm

tastyonions wrote:
lavengro wrote:When did a discussion of the pros and cons of encouraging kids to drink bleach arise in this thread? Lord knows I am a big fan of a well-crafted strawman, but this is a little beyond the pale.

Denialism and conspiracy theories can range anywhere from being mostly harmless and amusing (flat earth advocates, moon landing "truthers") to deadly (AIDs denial or bleach as a cure for autism, for example). Clearly you don't agree that coronavirus denialism sits on the latter end of the spectrum.

Ideas have consequences.

You should not make that assumption about my beliefs at all. I happen to agree that COVID-19 denialism is unhelpful and when it prompts behaviour like we are seeing in some places in the world (and which you in your state will have closer awareness of than me), it can be dangerous and even deadly.

But in your post, you were attempting to justify your REDACTED right off comment on the basis that you "wouldn't have a genteel, congenial discussion about the pros and cons of encouraging kids to drink bleach." That bleach suggestion is a farcical and really really dangerous one that I understand has resulted in death, but it was not Peter's point. It was kind of the antithesis of Peter's point in some respects. The bleach suggestion was not denialism (to the contrary, actually), and not a conspiracy theory - it was just a really really stupid suggestion.

So this is not a justification for the tone or language of your response. If we are just going to pretend that because a poster holds a position that we don't agree with, they can be held responsible for any conspiracy theory that they are not actually promoting, then madness ensues.
Last edited by lavengro on Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby tastyonions » Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:42 pm

I think you may have misread. I was analogizing the stupidity and recklessness of bleach-drinking advocacy with "this topic" (i.e. coronavirus denialism). Not claiming that anyone here was actually promoting the former.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby Saim » Thu Jul 16, 2020 4:04 pm

lavengro wrote:The bleach suggestion was not denialism (to the contrary, actually), and not a conspiracy theory - it was just a really really stupid suggestion.


Huh? There is a whole bunch of conspiracy theories common among medical bleach proponents that aim to explain why their quack therapy isn't accepted by "the mainstream". I don't see the difference between that and quackery involving the coronavirus, and in fact there's often a lot of overlap (some people suggest bleach as a cure for the coronavirus, the effectiveness of which is of course being suppressed by "Big Pharma").
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby lavengro » Thu Jul 16, 2020 4:24 pm

Saim wrote:
lavengro wrote:The bleach suggestion was not denialism (to the contrary, actually), and not a conspiracy theory - it was just a really really stupid suggestion.


Huh? There is a whole bunch of conspiracy theories common among medical bleach proponents that aim to explain why their quack therapy isn't accepted by "the mainstream". I don't see the difference between that and quackery involving the coronavirus, and in fact there's often a lot of overlap (some people suggest bleach as a cure for the coronavirus, the effectiveness of which is of course being suppressed by "Big Pharma").

Thanks Saim,

I know that there are conspiracy theories involving the bleach proponents. But I see no indication that those are theories that Peter subscribes to.

I took Peter's point to be that there is no conclusive evidence that COVID-19 even exists, and if it exists, its effects are significantly overblown. The bleach suggestion (which I understand even TastyOnions agrees was not referenced by Peter) I take to be not that there is no COVID-19, but that there is a painful and dangerous cure to it.

Are those positions not antithetical?

Boiled down: one poster supports the view that there is no COVID-19 (and presumably, no need for a cure). Another poster attacks the first poster by saying how crazy a cure to COVID-19 promoted briefly by a political leader is, and attempting to draw an analogy between the two inconsistent views.

Attack the insanity of the bleach cocktail suggestion for sure; telling Peter to REDACTED right off because other people are suggesting a crazy cure for a coronavirus that Peter may not even think needs a cure seems offside.

I honestly don't think this thread contributes to the forum and should be shuttered.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby tastyonions » Thu Jul 16, 2020 4:33 pm

lavengro wrote:I honestly don't think this thread contributes to the forum and should be shuttered.

Agreed 100%.
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Re: When do you think US-EU travel will be allowed again?

Postby Saim » Thu Jul 16, 2020 5:03 pm

lavengro wrote:Are those positions not antithetical?

[...]

Boiled down: one poster supports the view that there is no COVID-19 (and presumably, no need for a cure). Another poster attacks the first poster by saying how crazy a cure to COVID-19 promoted briefly by a political leader is, and attempting to draw an analogy between the two inconsistent views.


Yes, I think it's a fair analogy. Both narratives are dangerous and both are closely tied to conspiracy theories. The fact that they're on the surface contradictory is irrelevant; the fact that individual conspiracy theorists can and do hold contradictory views all the time attests to this. You'll notice this deep epistemological confusion in Peter's own posts: the response to light prodding at some of his sources is to immediately fall back and say that he doesn't actually know if the nonsense he's spreading is true, but that we should simply "be critical of the TV" and that there is "mainstream" persecution of his views.

This is a fundamental part of the conspiracist worldview: it's not about any of the individual factual/empirical claims made being true, but about the epistemological claim that everyone is lying to them. Completely contradictory "alternative" narratives end up serving the same discursive function. This is also why conspiracy theories are hardly ever presented as a coherent thesis or set of arguments, but as a tortuous gish-gallop of random, disconnected "discrepancies" in the "official" narrative.
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