The Quixotic Ideas Thread


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Continuing the discussion from ‭🎒 TIL (about the Dark Arts of HTML):

    @asdf said:

    Bookmarked. Maybe, someday, I'll actually try and learn the language. To write a (bad) English → Lojban translator bot for WTDWTF. For <abbr title="shits and giggles">science</abbr>

    <small><small><small><small><small><small>Filed under: <a>That's never gonna happen, but it sounds like fun

    See the bolded part above. This thread is for well-intentioned ideas that for whatever reason, have little or no chance at widespread adoption, so proponents of the idea would be just as productive jousting with windmills.

    I'll start:

    • Forth
    • Lisp
    • Libertarianism
    • Prolog


  • @antiquarian said:

    This thread is for well-intentioned ideas

    A bad English -> Lojban bot for WTDWTF is a "well-intentioned idea".

    You've broken your thread before you were even finished introducing it.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    The "well-intentioned ideas" are in the list at the bottom of my post. Nothing's broken here except someone's reading comprehension.



  • So when you say "that's never gonna happen" in the quoted post, what exactly is "that"? If not the Lojban thing.

    I'd also argue that Libertarianism isn't "well-intentioned", but now you've thrown the entire thread into doubt! Gasp!


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Which Lojban thing? Learning it, or writing the bad translator?


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @blakeyrat said:

    I'd also argue that Libertarianism isn't "well-intentioned"

    That's actually one of the reasons Libertarianism will never have widespread adoption. People see that Libertarians don't want government doing a, b, and c and assume that they also don't want government doing x, y, and z, and that they don't want a, b, and c done at all. They then conclude that Libertarians are just assholes who want poor people to starve and who want big corporations to get away with selling defective products.



  • I thought I was libertarian until I met some actual Libertarians. They're the craziest of the bunch on the political spectrum IMO.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @mott555 said:

    I thought I was libertarian until I met some actual Libertarians. They're the craziest of the bunch on the political spectrum IMO.

    Crazier than anarchists?


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    @antiquarian said:

    Libertarianism

    IMO, libertarianism is the retarded child of anarchism and classic liberalism. Also, I'm pretty sure this is going to become the official flamewar thread soon. Anyway, here's my list:

    • Microkernels
    • "Safe" languages like Ada
    • Pacifism
    • Basic income

  • sockdevs

    @asdf said:

    official flamewar thread

    it's on my watchlist for possibly incrementing a certain counter in the lounge.


  • area_deu

    What a useful, constructive and well-spirited post.


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    @antiquarian said:

    Crazier than anarchists?

    In my experience, yes. Less ideological, but much crazier.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @asdf said:

    Basic income

    I wouldn't be surprised to see this one actually implemented, just not in the US.


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    Enhancing the community. JWBP


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    @antiquarian said:

    I wouldn't be surprised to see this one actually implemented

    The idea might actually work, but I doubt any political party in any country that could afford paying their citizens a basic income will be adventurous enough to be the first to try it out in the near future.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    I'm not saying it would actually work, just that I wouldn't be surprised if it was tried.


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    @antiquarian said:

    I'm not saying it would actually work

    Me neither, I'm just saying it might.

    @antiquarian said:

    just that I wouldn't be surprised if it was tried

    That'd be the most costly experiment ever, so I doubt it'll ever happen.



  • @antiquarian said:

    well-intentioned ideas that for whatever reason, have little or no chance at widespread adoption

    That's like every project I do....

    Systems with low-tech users change slowly.


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    @asdf said:

    most costly experiment ever

    INB4 @boomzilla starting another renewable energy/climate change flamewar.



  • Aren't anarcho-capitalist a subset of libertarians? Wikipedia seems to think the same ( I just skimmed thorough the text).


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Piko said:

    Aren't anarcho-capitalist a subset of libertarians?

    Anarcho-capitalists are a subset of anarchists, who by definition want no government. Libertarians want government to be limited but don't want to get rid of it.

    @Piko said:

    Wikipedia seems to think the same ( I just skimmed thorough the text).

    Wikipedia editors tend to skew to the left, and therefore wouldn't care about the distinction above.



  • The OpenDoc concept, which has never been successful but keeps rearing its head.



  • @asdf said:

    renewable energy

    @asdf said:

    flamewar.

    You have 15 years to find sustainable renewable energy, or I halt the economy and start canceling social security checks.



  • Um no.

    From least government to biggest government
    Anarchist, Libertarian, Moderate, {Western Social Democracies}, Socialist, Authoritarian.


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    @xaade said:

    From least government to biggest government

    That scale is stupid. You can't measure government. You can assign certain responsibilities to it or not, but you cannot measure its power in absolute quantities. Also, the structure of the government and how it exercises its duties are much more important than its "size".

    That's exactly why I cannot take libertarians seriously. They constantly babble about the "size" of the government and seemingly arbitrarily assign certain responsibilities to it. Also, they usually define "government" as "any authority I currently dislike".



  • @asdf said:

    the structure of the government and how it exercises its duties

    is how you

    @asdf said:

    measure government

    Size is a metaphor.

    :rolleyes:

    I suppose your reflexes are really slow.

    Another way of saying it, is that scale is inversely proportional to how much accountability the government has to its people.


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    @xaade said:

    I suppose you'reyour reflexes are really slow.

    Mine are fine though.


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    @xaade said:

    @asdf said:
    the structure of the government and how it exercises its duties

    is how you

    @asdf said:

    measure government

    That doesn't even make sense.

    @xaade said:

    Another way of saying it, is that scale is inversely proportional to how much accountability the government has to its people.

    My point was: The number of responsibilities you assign to the government is mostly irrelevant when you want to evaluate and characterize it. Everything and nothing can be "the government's responsibility" to some degree under certain circumstances. Any measurement is completely arbitrary.

    @xaade said:

    Size is a populist, stupid metaphor.

    FTFY



  • @asdf said:

    Any measurement is completely arbitrary.

    So, Cuba and China government is exactly the same as American government?
    How much power those governments extoll is exactly the same?
    Every civil studies is inherently wrong from page 1?

    It's a useful scale for observation, nothing more.

    The same as a circle or square, none of the abstract geometry shapes exist.


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    @xaade said:

    Another way of saying it, is that scale is inversely proportional to how much accountability the government has to its people.

    The US Government is significantly larger than the Cuban government, therefore the Cuban government is much more accountable than the US Government is.


    Filed Under: Logical conclusion is...


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    @xaade said:

    So, Cuba and China government is exactly the same as American government?

    You want to shoehorn something as complex as politics into your simplistic scale. That sentence just proves my point.



  • @asdf said:

    You want to shoehorn something as complex as politics into your simplistic scale

    It's a tool, nothing more.

    Take fitting a shoe, we measure length and width because those are the only useful measurements, because shoe's are built to length and width measurements only.
    We don't custom tailor shoes.

    Same thing here, it is a simple model that doesn't account for all complexities.

    No government is exactly socialist, or exactly authoritarian, or exactly libertarian. But it is putting those ideas on a scale based on how much power those ideas give to the government.

    It is a model, nothing more.

    I can't believe I have to explain the concept of models and estimation.


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    @xaade said:

    We don't custom tailor shoes.

    News to these guys



  • @sloosecannon said:

    The US Government is significantly larger than the Cuban government, therefore the Cuban government is much more accountable than the US Government is.


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    @xaade said:

    It is a model, nothing more.

    It's a stupid model that both socialists and libertarians like to bring up at any available opportunity. I'm just tired of people screaming either "government regulation" or whining about the size of the government whenever something's going wrong. It's the same bullshit with different signs.

    The model is stupid and useless. Abandon it already.



  • @asdf said:

    something's going wrong

    Maybe because it's WHY stuff is going wrong?

    Look, if you don't want to debate politics, that's fine, but don't sit there and say the debate isn't useful.

    The balance of ideas is what provides the best opportunity for finding a good solution.

    If you don't like the conversation, then just ignore it.


    For the longest time we only had models that showed left vs. right. And that wasn't helpful for understanding why a right-based and left-based government policy could end up being authoritarian.

    Now we know that left vs. right are independent from government authority, that's a good thing. It actually brings left and right sides together in determining how much power to give to the government.

    The fact that we have more in common than we realized, has made the discussion more healthy.


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    Your point?


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    @xaade said:

    Look, if you don't want to debate politics, that's fine, but don't sit there and say the debate isn't useful.

    That's not what I said at all, quite the opposite. I'm tired of people using an arbitrary scale as a reference in every political discussion. By using that scale as a reference, you oversimplify the issues being discussed and avoid a sensible debate. That's exactly what angers me.

    @xaade said:

    The fact that we have more in common than we realized, has made the discussion more healthy.

    You call that "big government" vs "small government" bullshit a healthy debate? Ouch.



  • Having less law doesn't mean the government has less authority.


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    @xaade said:

    Having less law doesn't mean the government has less authority.

    E_RELEVANCE_NOT_FOUND



  • @asdf said:

    avoid a sensible debate

    Only if that's what people use it for.

    It's a tool.

    I use it so I can understand where people are coming from and why they think the way they do.

    That way I can find common ground in my discussion so I can better present my idea and understand their idea.

    When someone says they are left-authoritarian, I know they won't budge on saying that government scale is bad. So I try to show how the problem won't be solved by the direction of the solution.

    If I know that someone is moderate libertarian, I know that they won't budge on taking power from the government, so I try to show how a problem won't be solved by scale of the solution.

    The political landscape is a diamond.

    People can be on the left or right, but as you move to the top or bottom (big or small government), the left/right directions matter less, the government becomes the same.



  • @asdf said:

    The idea might actually work, but I doubt any political party in any country that could afford paying their citizens a basic income will be adventurous enough to be the first to try it out in the near future.

    Interesting that none of you have read about this:

    In Switzerland, an idea to guarantee every citizen a yearly income of 30,000 Swiss francs, regardless of other wealth or employment, has gained enough supporters to trigger a referendum. Economics correspondent Paul Solman reports that the idea is gaining some traction across party lines in the United States, too, but views differ on if and how a guaranteed basic income would work.

    Germans also have something like this, not so widespread or generous but close:


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    @xaade said:

    People can be on the left or right, but as you move to the top or bottom (big or small government), the left/right directions matter less, the government becomes the same.

    TIL Hitler === Stalin


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    @Eldelshell said:

    Germans also have something like this, not so widespread or generous but close:

    The Hartz reforms are a completely different beasts and have nothing to do with the idea of basic income. Didn't know about the referendum in Switzerland, though.



  • The resulting government was similar, was it not.


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    @xaade said:

    The resulting government was similar, was it not.

    Not really... One government was fanatically dedicated to a smart, powerful nutjob who wanted to control the world, the other became corrupt, turned into a top-heavy authoritatorship and essentially fell apart due to its own stupidity decades later



  • Government through Nazi party.

    @sloosecannon said:

    became corrupt

    @sloosecannon said:

    turned into a top-heavy authoritatorship

    @sloosecannon said:

    essentially fell apart due to its own stupidity decades later

    by trying to invade Russia.


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    @xaade said:

    by trying to invade Russia.

    Not sure if intentional woosh attempt to invalidate my point to validate your point, or what, but the Nazi government was in power for ~12 years. 12 years != decades the corrupt, top heavy authoritatorship was fairly obviously the USSR...


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    @xaade said:

    Only if that's what people use it for.

    It's a tool.

    Well, IMO that's what it's mostly being used for, which is why I doubt the usefulness of this particular tool. Any model is only useful if it represents reality at an adequate level of detail and if it helps in discussing and drawing useful conclusions about reality. And I don't think this particular model is either useful or helpful.



  • @asdf said:

    what it's mostly being used for

    You mean like the hockey stick being used primarily for political parties to try to control based on their investments who will make the most money, while using the public like a puppet?

    Because, politicians never use models for personal gain...

    Whereas sustainable green energy is overlooked, in lieu of unsustainable green energy (because that's whose back is being scratched), such that we'll never have an actual solution?


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