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Showing content with the highest reputation on 09/23/2021 in Posts

  1. Ukraine's president compares UN to 'a retired superhero He argues that the organization doesn't do anything and just looks on from the sidelines while countries like Russia, which guaranteed the sovereignty of Ukraine's borders forever in the 1990's, invaded and seized a large part of the country in the 2000's. https://thehill.com/policy/international/573543-ukraines-president-compares-un-to-a-retired-superhero?rl=1 One of the commenters observed: "He's not wrong. UN is toothless now..." So I replied: "When did it ever have teeth? Until there's a United Nations Tribunal on International Law which sends out heavily armed agents to deal with nations, leaders, or rogue actors who get out of line, there won't be any international defenders of freedom."
    2 points
  2. Yeah, I had way too many "LARPing" experiences as a young child playing soldier with the "I shot you!"...."No, you missed."..."No, I didn't."..."Yes, you did." If I'm going to just collaboratively write an interactive story with virtually no rules, why am I paying for a set of rules rather than just collaboratively writing an interactive story?
    2 points
  3. I figure if you are going to play Champions half the fun is setting it in the Champions Universe! This is a sort of "Sequel" game to an old Champions Campaign that ran for over 25 years. All my current players played in that game and actually interacted with the "by the book" version of Ravenswood so in this game I advanced the Timeline for the new characters to keep it contemporary. Ms. Crone's 5E writeup mentioned that she knew she would be Headmistress and I knew there was going to be a lot of time shennanigans in my PC's future so why not stick to the Canon & reap the rewards? (everyone keeps going on about to teenagers about how they are choosing their future, so I'm having several different futures show up with opinions. I like that Headmistress Timmons has insight into what will be but comes by it differently than "conventional" time travelers. It makes her a great Mentor figure in that she can help but can't solve the problems directly.) As the old PCs had met the students statted out in Teen Champions and they have now graduated I also had to repopulate the school with "nontraditional" students of my own making. But that is half the fun!
    2 points
  4. And for after.... 4) Will you still love me tomorrow? I would follow this guy to see where he went, but I think that’s the start of a three book series.
    2 points
  5. 2 points
  6. DShomshak

    Medieval Stasis

    As has been alluded to, not all change is equally meaningful. A lot of RL history is what I call "churn": Borders change, one dynasty succeeds another, kingdoms appear and disappear, but the events don't change the social pattern. It's the difference between coup and revolution. A country can have a dozen coups and change not a bit. Violent overthrows of government can even be one of the chief enduring elements. (And as assault's link shows, that's nothing new, either.) Real revolutions that change the political and cultural order are far more rare. What's that line from Somtow Sucharitkul's "Inquestor" series? "History there is, and no history." Apparent change that maintains a greater stability. So in designing a setting's history, what events will actually still matter? And which are just churn? Dean Shomshak
    2 points
  7. archer

    Coronavirus

    We can look at what's in the video. Eventually. The doctor is Ryan Cole, who is a board certified dermatopathologist (studies skin dieases) according to this pro-Ryan Cole website. More on this website later. https://childrenshealthdefense.org/defender/rfk-jr-podcast-dr-ryan-cole-pathologist-early-treatment-keydelta-variant/ According to this website, he also has specializations in Anatomic Pathology, Clinical Pathology, and Surgical Pathology...all from highly credible institutions. His hospital privileges are at a local VA hospital. https://health.usnews.com/doctors/ryan-cole-724324 Now Ryan Cole is also the CEO of Cole Diagnostics, whose website looks like a typical website for medical testing services. https://www.colediagnostics.com/ But if you go to the shop tab on his website, you can buy cactus, watches, shoes, perfume, lamps, and backpacks...so I'm not entirely sure what his business is. https://www.colediagnostics.com/shop?page=4 But if you believe that pro-Ryan website I listed earlier, it says after diagnosing COVID (presumably through his lab services) that he believes in a multi-vector approach to treating COVID which includes monoclonal antibodies (a treatment which actually works), steroids (which are pretty standard to treat patients having breathing problems), ivermectin (horse de-wormer), hydroxychloroquine (as pushed by the previous administration), the cholesterol drug fenofibrate and the anti-depressant drug fluvoxamine. Fenofibrate, well, there's been a study in the UK and a small one out of Israel suggesting that it could have a positive impact on COVID. Fluvoxamine, on the other hand, hasn't had a clinical trial. There's been a couple of studies where patients with mild symptoms were given the drug or a placebo then self-reported the results. But so many people dropped out of the study mid-way through that the results, even for what it was, is inconclusive. Fenofibrate is relatively benign as a drug but Fluvoxamine can have serious side effects including increasing the risk of suicide. https://www.covid19treatmentguidelines.nih.gov/therapies/immunomodulators/fluvoxamine/ So if you believe the pro-Ryan article, he's experimenting on his patients with unproven and possibly dangerous therapies. As for the video, it was posted by thewatchtowers dot org which is a site devoted to conspiracies and which no one takes credit for in the websites "About" section. Their Reddit page say the subjects up for discussion include "Politics, Crime, Economy, UFO's, Conspiracy's, Corruption, Paranormal and Faith". Dealer's choice on whether "the watchtowers" is a reference to Wiccan beliefs or to the Jehovah's Witnesses publication. The video as listed on their own website https://thewatchtowers.org/scientist-shows-vaccine-effects-in-autopsies-dont-believe-it-see-for-yourself-if-you-want/ praises this doctor for being as courageous as America's Frontline Doctors, which is the medical scam site which we've discussed here previously. (Other articles tell such things as how people who are vaccinated set off store alarms because of the vaccine in their body. Another article about how an occupational therapist in Hawaii claims that he's seen 32 elderly people pass away immediately after getting their Moderna vaccination.) The doctor's speech itself: At the one minute mark, he says we've done studies on lab animals and determined that the vaccine when the COVID virus isn't present causes the same diseases in the body that having COVID does. And a few seconds later he says that the vaccine causes COVID. It would have been nice if he'd mentioned who "we" were and given us a link to the studies themselves. Because multiple studies which conclusively prove that the vaccines cause COVID would be a cause for concern if it were real in any way. He says multiple times that people have died because of the protein spikes floating around in the bloodstream...but he doesn't give any names and doesn't claim to have done any pathological exam of anyone who has died in such a way. He shows pictures of a heart which supposedly has inflammation after the person got the vaccine. But we don't get any "before and after" pictures of the same person to see if the person already had an inflamed heart before getting the vaccine or whether the heart was normal until getting the vaccine. He's also not telling us how many vaccinated people he had to look through before finding one with an inflamed heart (or lung, or whatever). He's also not being clear in admitting that most doctors can look at people who are old, overweight, or have other visible problems and determine just by looking at them that they likely have something or other in their body that's inflamed. So is he finding his examples by randomly picking vaccinated people out of a hat and getting a wide cross-section of people or is he cherry-picking to find the people who most likely have a pre-existing inflammation. He cites a 200 fold increase in a particular heart disease in children which he claims in from them getting the vaccines but doesn't cite a source for his claim. He also doesn't tell us how many cases there were to start with because going from one case to three is dramatic statistically but not a dramatic increase otherwise, even if true. The 16% decrease in fertility in rats cited from the Pfizer study would be concerning if true. (It'd be more concerning if I didn't think the world was way over-populated but that's another matter. And randomly decreasing fertility without publicizing it to people would be ethically wrong regardless, IMO.) At about 8 minutes in, he claims that all the supposed inflammation is caused by micro-clotting...but that you can't see it on "x-ray or scan". He also says "if we look at this in the patients, we know it's micro-clotting (emphasis in the original)". It'd be interesting to find out where he gets this knowledge from looking at this in the patients since normal inflammation isn't caused through blood clots, the pictures he's shown aren't of clots, and the x-rays and scans don't show clots. I'd normally go through the rest of the video but I'm old and have been doing three doctor appointments and errands all day today and I'm wiped out. If anyone wants to make a request for me to go through the last five minutes of his speech and give my impressions of it, go ahead and ask. In any case, getting back to BitChute. The reason why the website which this video is posted to is relevant to the discussion is that shows up on BitChute rather than a credible website is that the information which is most often posted on BitChute is not credible. And if it were posted on YouTube, it'd be removed because it's a pack of hogswallop which is pretending to be credible information from a doctor who is in the business of trying to sell horse de-wormer, cactus, shoes, and backpacks. Not everything which is posted on BitChute is automatically nonsense. But there's often a reason it shows up there rather than websites which at least try to have some kind of very minimal standards. And the organization which chooses to post a video is often relevant as well. A wiccan-named organization which admits it is into conspiracy theories, UFO's and alternate spirituality...they're probably trying to find information which promotes their point of view rather than be an unbiased source of the news of the day.
    1 point
  8. Cancer

    The Academics Thread

    Today was my first day of in-person classes in very nearly 18 months. Man, am I tired. Of course, they had to be in person. Campus had a complete net-and-telephone failure during my first class.
    1 point
  9. Odin, is that you?
    1 point
  10. 1 point
  11. No, as I abhor minimalist rules.
    1 point
  12. I've been running a Ravenswood game for several years now. The way I've been dealing with it is by: - Getting the kids off campus (Dates, Movies, visiting parks, Music Shows) - Having adventures come to them (hunteds who know where they live, ex-students with an axe to grind, shennanigans in the science labs & library) - School Events (Rival Schools, Secret ID drama at the Spring Formal, Field Trips) - Family (One PC's father is hunted by Viper, another is the son of a Supervillain, several NPCs are the children of Heros) I've found that you have to get out of the "Mayor calls the PCs on the Red Batphone" type of adventures with teenagers. I lean into the drama of highschool. Not only do you want to get the right date for Prom, but she is being wooed by a "nontraditional" student from Von Drotte Academy (aka a mutant from Viper's school for budding supervillains). We have a whole ongoing plot about the future version of one PC's first girlfriend who keeps attacking the PCs to prevent them from doing all the evil she says they do in the future. Also: One PC paid points for a fake ID that lets them use Rideshare services to get around town. It won't help them get to a superfight, but it lets them get to interesting locations.
    1 point
  13. Eh; you can't see the dents from that angle. turns out that no matter what you tell your hired help about the turning radius on a twenty-one foot long truck, they are still going to try to turn it around in a stand of planted pines. I didnt really "get into" anything as I got older. Riding, writing, and wrenching have been my passions since I was a kid. I have gotten _out_ of a few things as my age advanced: chasing women (I caught one, so....), hair styling (no need anymore), and a thirty-four inch belt (like I said, I caught one. I can relax a bit now. ) I have also gotten out of drag racing (too expensive and too much time that I don't have anymore) and out of dirtbike racing (too old and I heal too slow). I still dabble on a bit of street racing (I know; I know- believe me, I know! I just finished watching that trial myself). thinking about it, I havent done any leather tanning or bookbinding in a couple of decades, either (I quit because I didn't want to learn and invest in the modern veggie-based dyes, etc, and the traditional,stuff was getting hard to source in less than industrial quantities). I grew up farming, so there is _zero- chance I want to sink a food plot in my backyard, though I do put in a few tomatoes every year just because they keep telling me you can't grow them around here, and I have both a grapefruit and a fig tree that are hyper-productive, but I think that is because I ignore them as hard as possible. Monte (the across-the-pond neighbor-lady's cat has drug up a couole of buddies, but I am not terribly into that either. looking back at it, i've been pretty fortunate: almost everything,I have ever wanted to do, I did while I was young enough to do it fully and well. the last couple of years I have worked half-heartedly at rebuilding my Hero Games collection, but really, I have regained everything I ever had (for what it's worth, the third-party magazines are the hardest), so now it's just picking a few things from 5 and 6e that sort of interest me. the only thing I can really pretend is a new interest is the plan I am working on to build a camper I can pull behind the Valkyrie. Apparently my wife is getting too old to sleep in a hammock tied to the bike and a tree under a tarp hung the same way. And, in her words, "I want something I can shower in!" i've got something workable that excites me, but I doubt I will ever have time or funds to pull that off, so I am not terribly excited by that, either. crap. I think I might be done living.....!
    1 point
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