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Old 03-27-2010, 12:20 AM   #1
Zeno
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Official Outer Limits/Debunking Thread

Of late some posts in SMP have taken on an ever more idiotic and incredible tone, adding to a general downward trend in posts and a general deterioration in quality to the forum. To curb this trend a new official thread is created which will give the more credulous yahoos the freedom to ask those burning questions they are raging to ask and have answered by those willing to take the time and effort. If you wish to have some fringe topic critiqued by some of the more superb skeptical and scientific minds that hover about SMP, then this gives all the opportunity to do so.

The creation of this official thread thus has two main purposes: first, to allow as complete as possible the freedom of speech to query about a wide range of fringe topics; and second, to bring a semblance of order and intelligence to SMP. This will obviously be accomplished by have all fringe topics confined to a single thread, death cage match style. Confining the more moronic and credulous posts from the throbbing masses to a crawl space under the house is now the official policy of SMP. This will not always be the case as there are some legitimate or honest question(s) that can be asked about seemly strange phenomena and some may wish for no more than a critique or rational explanation or to pull away the curtain of ignorance. Or so, one may hope.

As the thread title suggests, this space is designated for all non-political, non-religious fringe topics from conspiracy theories old and new, and those of the future that are even now being plotted and planned but not yet executed; and for all fringe topics of a technical nature or about some supposed natural phenomenon; some examples should light the way:

The Internal combustion engine that runs on almost 100% water or uses a carburetor that allows any vehicle to get 300 miles to the gallon.

I saw Dracula’s castle in a photo of Mars.

Is my Mom a zombie and if true what does that make me?

Is David Sklansky a space alien?

Is the loch Ness monster gay?

A pink unicorn lives in my lunch box.

Did Bigfoot eat my wife?

Will the world end in 2012?

Can N-rays melt my brain?

Can people really levitate?

The earth is hollow…..

Posters are expected to provide some sort of evidence and/or give rational reasons for their beliefs and/or questions. I realize this is almost contradictory in nature. Still, some ground rules are needed to keep the hoard at bay.

Fringe religious and god questions are obviously still for RGT, for example:

Will the armies of Satan eat my soul?

Is the pope really the anti-Christ?


All current threads that meet the above criteria of a fringe topic (moon landing thread for example) will be closed down in 24-hours. Any new fringe type posts need to be posted here. I will be the sole arbitrator on what does and does not constitute a fringe type post, but that should be easy. And my judgement is final, but input from others is welcome.


-Zeno

Last edited by Zeno; 10-01-2010 at 09:01 PM. Reason: typos; wording
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Old 03-27-2010, 12:32 AM   #2
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Great idea. Oh, btw:

Spoiler:

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 12:55 AM   #3
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Thanks.

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:43 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 01:03 AM   #4
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Is my Mom a zombie and if true what does that make me?
Depends if you were born before or after she was zombified.

Quote:
Is David Sklansky a space alien?
Obviously yes.

Quote:
Is the loch Ness monster gay?
Bisexual

Quote:
Did Bigfoot eat my wife?
No, It was a Jersey Devil

Quote:
Will the world end in 2012?
Yes, which is why I am planning on running up an enormous credit card debt soon.

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:43 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 01:28 AM   #5
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

It seems like "fringe" is way too broad for everything in math, science and philosophy matching that description to reasonably fit into a single thread.

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:43 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 02:45 AM   #6
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Thank you.

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:44 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 03:19 AM   #7
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

I think this is good. I can see how my own statements go from credible to complete ***** when I´m in one of those threads (did man walk on the moon?). The humorous aspects just take over too much.

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:46 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 03:56 AM   #8
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

True story:

I really like zombies. I like books about zombies, zombie movies, you name it. For some reason, they are just the most interesting and badass of all the classic horror villains, imo. I dont want to hear your vampire nonsense, vampires are just basically emo zombies. I particularly enjoy the recent trend in the zombie genre of playing up the viral, medical possibilities of zombies, based in some part probably on Haitian "zombies" and other medical oddities. With this in mind, while on my neurology rotation last year, me and a like-minded classmate spent probably a good 4 hours each day, for 2 weeks, discussing the medical intricacies and minutae of zombies. We would pimp our residents on zombie questions, we would present patients in the morning as "Not presently showing signs of zombification" and we would discuss the steps the hospital was prepared to take in the event of (inevitable in our opinion) zombie uprising and epidemic.

This was probably more amusing to the two of us than to those around us, but as we were not officially disciplined, we continued to build up steam. Now, a quick aside is in order: the logistics of medical services are essentially this. At the bottom you have between 1 and 3 third year medical students (M3s). Above them you have an optional M4. Above that is the residents, from intern (PGY1) to the chief of the service (PGY3 to PGY5). Above that you will have an attending who is ultimately responsible for the decisions the team makes, but who in general plays more of an advisory role. He is somewhat responsible for educating the M3, but as you can see in the hierarchy, we are enough steps below him that interaction is generally minimal. In rare instances you are able to build a rapport though, and this was just such an attending. After a week or so of this zombie discussion, we finally decided to broach the subject with him. But we, perhaps unwisely, didnt exactly build up to it. He made the mistake of asking us if we had any questions or anything we wanted to learn about, so I asked him, absolutely deadpan, "Dr. XXXXXX....do you think that zombism crosses the placental barrier? I mean, some viruses are capable, but I wasnt able to find any reliable literature on the subject, so I was just wondering." To his credit (as an educator, if not as an expert on zombies) he paused, considered, and responded "Female zombies are sterile, they cannot get pregnant." Well, the first and really only rule of med student rounds is that you do not, under any circumstances, correct the attending, no matter how obviously wrong he is. So, my classmate and I accepted this answer and continued on with rounds.

Moral of the story: Can you believe they grant medical licenses to people who dont even realize that you get pregnant FIRST, and are then BITTEN by a zombie, and thus it is ABSOLUTELY potentially a concern whether zombism crosses the placental barrier?

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:46 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 04:19 AM   #9
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

...and remember... this thread is not only about zombies...

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:47 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 08:46 AM   #10
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by vhawk01 View Post
brraaaaaaains
I ain't afraid of no zombie foetus (zoetus?). Hell, I'll kick the crap out of twins just for fun. Like a Cabbage Patch Kid that never wears out. Also, vampires rule. It's not that vampires are emo zombies, zombies are stoner vampires.

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:47 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 09:47 AM   #11
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

This thread is obviously just another ploy by the forces of Bing to redirect their mainland China censored results from Google to SMP. I guess we now will all have to buy iPads. It's all pretty transparent.


PairTheBoard

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:47 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 10:50 AM   #12
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

So, for example, discussions of a "fringe" theory of astronomy that reinterprets the red shift and cost an astronomer his career, a "fringe" form of medical ethics involving overt eugenics, and "fringe" cold fusion which mainstream physics considers lol will all take place in a single thread, interleaved with each other?

Or is this just for subjects not intended seriously, like zombies?

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 11:50 AM   #13
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Some clarification: Yes this is a serious thread, in so far as it goes. The intent is for improvement of the forum as I stated in the OP. For added concrete examples, The Official Homework Thread and Jason's Ask a Probabilist thread have been an excellent way to consolidate posts in a single location, stimulate discussion, and overall have a central place that posters know well and will go to with questions or to provide answers. In my judgment those threads have added greatly to the quality of this forum. In addition, with the advent of 2012 we had a spat of wild-eyed posts awhile back and I was forced to sent them to one designated thread; now this official thread will serve in that capacity.


The term ‘fringe’ is good enough for the title and includes all the usually pseudo-science and quackery that seems to pervade the public mindset. There is no need to draw up a list of what will and will not go into this thread as determinations can be made on a case by case basis. The examples serve as a guidepost. If someone thinks they saw the Yeti, or a medium told someone they should invest all their money in Stock X, then there is a place in SPM to post on those subjects. It is also easier on those who wish to avoid the subject altogether, in having a central focal point for fringe topics.

Legitimate topics or questions on science, math and philosophy will not be effected because of this official thread.

-Zeno

PS: Elvis lives!

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 11:53 AM   #14
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeno View Post
Some clarification: Yes this is a serious thread, in so far as it goes. The intent is for improvement of the forum as I stated in the OP. For added concrete examples, The Official Homework Thread and Jason's Ask a Probabilist thread have been an excellent way to consolidate posts in a single location, stimulate discussion, and overall have a central place that posters know well and will go to with questions or to provide answers. In my judgment those threads have added greatly to the quality of this forum. In addition, with the advent of 2012 we had a spat of wild-eyed posts awhile back and I was forced to sent them to one designated thread; now this official thread will serve in that capacity.


The term ‘fringe’ is good enough for the title and includes all the usually pseudo-science and quackery that seems to pervade the public mindset. There is no need to draw up a list of what will and will not go into this thread as determinations can be made on a case by case basis. The examples serve as a guidepost. If someone thinks they saw the Yeti, or a medium told someone they should invest all their money in Stock X, then there is a place in SPM to post on those subjects. It is also easier on those who wish to avoid the subject altogether, in having a central focal point for fringe topics.

Legitimate questions on science, math and philosophy will not be effected because of this official thread.

-Zeno

PS: Elvis lives!
Would it be possible to remove the "mom is a zombie" thing from the header? Kind of insulting.

Last edited by Zeno; 03-27-2010 at 12:49 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 12:51 PM   #15
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by plaaynde View Post
Would it be possible to remove the "mom is a zombie" thing from the header? Kind of insulting.
Fixed all the titles.

-Zeno
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Old 03-27-2010, 01:17 PM   #16
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeno View Post
Fixed all the titles.

-Zeno
Ty! Waiting for interesting posts . I prefer the non-zombie ones.

Waiting for the scientific, mathematical and philosophical "evidence" about Elvis living, to support your statement (which was short and maybe not so serious, maybe only symbolically labelling this thread, but in any case)

Last edited by plaaynde; 03-27-2010 at 01:41 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 03:21 PM   #17
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by vhawk01 View Post
True story:

I really like zombies. I like books about zombies, zombie movies, you name it. For some reason, they are just the most interesting and badass of all the classic horror villains, imo. I dont want to hear your vampire nonsense, vampires are just basically emo zombies. I particularly enjoy the recent trend in the zombie genre of playing up the viral, medical possibilities of zombies, based in some part probably on Haitian "zombies" and other medical oddities. With this in mind, while on my neurology rotation last year, me and a like-minded classmate spent probably a good 4 hours each day, for 2 weeks, discussing the medical intricacies and minutae of zombies. We would pimp our residents on zombie questions, we would present patients in the morning as "Not presently showing signs of zombification" and we would discuss the steps the hospital was prepared to take in the event of (inevitable in our opinion) zombie uprising and epidemic.

This was probably more amusing to the two of us than to those around us, but as we were not officially disciplined, we continued to build up steam. Now, a quick aside is in order: the logistics of medical services are essentially this. At the bottom you have between 1 and 3 third year medical students (M3s). Above them you have an optional M4. Above that is the residents, from intern (PGY1) to the chief of the service (PGY3 to PGY5). Above that you will have an attending who is ultimately responsible for the decisions the team makes, but who in general plays more of an advisory role. He is somewhat responsible for educating the M3, but as you can see in the hierarchy, we are enough steps below him that interaction is generally minimal. In rare instances you are able to build a rapport though, and this was just such an attending. After a week or so of this zombie discussion, we finally decided to broach the subject with him. But we, perhaps unwisely, didnt exactly build up to it. He made the mistake of asking us if we had any questions or anything we wanted to learn about, so I asked him, absolutely deadpan, "Dr. XXXXXX....do you think that zombism crosses the placental barrier? I mean, some viruses are capable, but I wasnt able to find any reliable literature on the subject, so I was just wondering." To his credit (as an educator, if not as an expert on zombies) he paused, considered, and responded "Female zombies are sterile, they cannot get pregnant." Well, the first and really only rule of med student rounds is that you do not, under any circumstances, correct the attending, no matter how obviously wrong he is. So, my classmate and I accepted this answer and continued on with rounds.

Moral of the story: Can you believe they grant medical licenses to people who dont even realize that you get pregnant FIRST, and are then BITTEN by a zombie, and thus it is ABSOLUTELY potentially a concern whether zombism crosses the placental barrier?
You need to write a book on this subject.

I'm undead serious.
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Old 03-27-2010, 03:26 PM   #18
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeno View Post
Fixed all the titles.

-Zeno
Underneath my post it says "Last edited by Zeno..." but on a quick scan I couldnt find anything that you edited AND ITS DRIVING ME INSANE WHAT DID YOU DO TO IT
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Old 03-27-2010, 03:26 PM   #19
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by plaaynde View Post
Ty! Waiting for interesting posts . I prefer the non-zombie ones.

Waiting for the scientific, mathematical and philosophical "evidence" about Elvis living, to support your statement (which was short and maybe not so serious, maybe only symbolically labelling this thread, but in any case)
Zombies are real. Interesting enough for you?
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Old 03-27-2010, 04:18 PM   #20
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by vhawk01 View Post
Zombies are real. Interesting enough for you?
Please, I hope you are not talking about Elvis.
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Old 03-27-2010, 04:24 PM   #21
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by vhawk01 View Post
Underneath my post it says "Last edited by Zeno..." but on a quick scan I couldnt find anything that you edited AND ITS DRIVING ME INSANE WHAT DID YOU DO TO IT


I just changed all the titles (deleted: My Mom is a Zombie), nothing was edited in anyone's post. Remain calm, have a cool beer, and read a soothing book.

-Zeno
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Old 03-27-2010, 04:29 PM   #22
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by vhawk01 View Post
Zombies are real. Interesting enough for you?
I've created zombies.

(Damn I feel like a geek now.)
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Old 03-27-2010, 04:32 PM   #23
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by chezlaw View Post
I've created zombies.
Now this is getting really interesting. Like doctor Frankenstein?

Or do you simply mean you have that effect on your opponents playing poker so well?

Last edited by plaaynde; 03-27-2010 at 04:40 PM.
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Old 03-27-2010, 04:33 PM   #24
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by plaaynde View Post
Please, I hope you are not talking about Elvis.
Possible but unlikely. If so, he would have been one of the "slow shambling Night of the Living Dead" types and not the "hyper-aggro 28 days later" types.
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Old 03-27-2010, 04:43 PM   #25
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Re: Official Fringe Topics Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by vhawk01 View Post
Possible but unlikely. If so, he would have been one of the "slow shambling Night of the Living Dead" types and not the "hyper-aggro 28 days later" types.
Sharp analysis. This thread has real potential.
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