ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Non-USA & General Politics
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Tags Russia-Ukraine relations , Ukraine incidents , Ukraine issues , vladimir putin

Reply
Old 20th February 2015, 08:37 AM   #41
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by McHrozni View Post
Do you have a better comparison that shows Russia is not, in fact, fascist?

McHrozni
I guess CapelDodger would suggest "Medici Florence"
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 08:42 AM   #42
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Oh, I hadn't mentioned the Russian soldiers who have proudly proclaimed the involvement of their units in attacking Ukraine on social media

http://www.businessinsider.com/russi...ne-2014-7?IR=T

and this

http://www.buzzfeed.com/maxseddon/do...rtl#.jl70YJQB7

ETA: Again with deeper analysis at Bellingcat
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending

Last edited by jimbob; 20th February 2015 at 08:43 AM.
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 09:08 AM   #43
McHrozni
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 10,479
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I guess CapelDodger would suggest "Medici Florence"
Oh, that's what he meant by that.

I really rather wouldn't consider any pre-industrial society, too many inherent differences in technology and culture to make a useful comparison. Surely we can find something better.

McHrozni
McHrozni is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 09:39 AM   #44
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
I thought fascist states had a planned economy, "making the trains run on time"?
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 12:32 PM   #45
dudalb
Penultimate Amazing
 
dudalb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 37,651
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I thought fascist states had a planned economy, "making the trains run on time"?

Facist Italy and Nazi Germany had very badly planned economies. In the end Il Duce and Der Fuehrer had zero understanding of basic economics. In fact,the inefficency of the Nazi economy...even in the area of rearmament and arms production..created an incredible amount of waste, and was a principle reason that Germany lost the war.
__________________
Pacifism is a shifty doctrine under which a man accepts the benefits of the social group without being willing to pay - and claims a halo for his dishonesty.

Robert Heinlein.
dudalb is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 01:58 PM   #46
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I thought fascist states had a planned economy, "making the trains run on time"?
Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Facist Italy and Nazi Germany had very badly planned economies. In the end Il Duce and Der Fuehrer had zero understanding of basic economics. In fact,the inefficency of the Nazi economy...even in the area of rearmament and arms production..created an incredible amount of waste, and was a principle reason that Germany lost the war.
Oh yes, I should have made it clear that I was just referring to the propaganda.

But they were still planned.
I think that planned economies are generally going to be badly planned if they are planned by people - The Culture could probably manage, but it is fictional.

JK Galbraith was quite interesting on the subject of the economies in WWII. Somewhere I read (I think it was in one of his books) that the UK was about the only fully mobilised war economy for much of the war.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 02:20 PM   #47
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
The core of the false Ukrainian narrative that's unraveling is that this mess was caused by some "because we can" aggression by Putin who somehow needs more land or wants to restore the Soviet Union and will attack the Baltics next.

While in reality it has been caused by a protest movement stirred up by "the West" that went terribly wrong and let to a violent putsch that brought to power much unsavioury characters who sent the army after the East when they did the same that the West (Ukraine) did before: occupy public buildings, not accepting the booting of the man they overwhelmingly voted for.

The fact that it's not Kiev that's getting destroyed by artillery, but Donetsk and Lugansk, should alone be a cause for thinking.

Now we're here on the anniversary of the Maidan massacre that paved the way for the coup, and even the BBC is coming around with some limited hang-out about the real culprits, and it's time for people who want to be taken seriously to stop their "it's all Putin's fault and that guy from that rag saw a tank crossing the border" nonsense.

You're not getting away with this. The people of the Donbass aren't puppets. The freaks in Kiew are.
The first highlighted bit.

You keep dismissing stories by independent journalists by caling them
"pre$$titutes". However your reasoning for dismissing some sources and accepting others isn't entirely clear.

I agree in principle that eyewitness accounts are less strong evidence than material evidence, but even discounting those (for no particularly good reason, given that you are taking Russian stories at face value) that still leaves a lot of material evidence:

Quote:
2) Foot patrol of Russian paratroopers captured at least 4-hours walk inside the border

3) Scorch marks corresponding to rocket launch sites and tyre tracks corresponding to launch vehicles visible on freely available commercial satellite images at the right place to account for attacks on Ukrainian troops in August when the tide suddenly turned against the separatists.

4) Reports of Russian drones, and photos of downed drones

5) Photos of the Russian side using non-Ukrainian MBTs (particular variants of T72's)
As well as the Russian social media posts by members of the Russian armed forces which also confirm their being in Ukraine.

The open source satellite pictures are the clearest evidence though, but there is plenty of circumstantial evidence that also points to Russian state involvement.

The second highlighted bit.

What am I not going to get away with? Posting evidence and expecting a reply?
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 03:21 PM   #48
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
What am I not going to get away with? Posting evidence and expecting a reply?

I wasn't necessarily talking about you. We clarified your motivation already. Your sources have their broader narrative collapsing, which is nice to watch. You can ignore the inner causes and instead focus on one half of the outer proxy situation (and connected strawmen) as long as you will, you'll convince nobody but yourself (and not even that, given the consistence of your tries to impress me ).
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 03:29 PM   #49
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
btw, given the usual babble about fascism in the background, here is an interesting read pointing at the people who produce the "think" tank junk that's meant to convince Obama of arming Ukraine, and their direct connections to the military-industrial complex through several revolving doors. For short attention span, here's a 20 min radio interview about the article, with the author.
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...

Last edited by Childlike Empress; 20th February 2015 at 03:30 PM.
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 03:45 PM   #50
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Iwasn't necessarily talking about you. We clarified your motivation already. Your sources have their broader narrative collapsing, which is nice to watch. You can ignore the inner causes and instead focus on one half of the outer proxy situation (and connected strawmen) as long as you will, you'll convince nobody but yourself (and not even that, given the consistence of your tries to impress me ).
What does that even mean?

How is the "broader narrative collapsing"? I notice that you haven't actually disputed any of the evidence except one part, which you summarily dismissed but for no clear reason.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 03:56 PM   #51
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
What does that even mean?

Me
You coming back after an initial little mini-rant minutes after my post.

It's something you have to clear up with yourself, not me, and given the countless times you haven't read my posts, you're on your own there. I just have better things to do than to chew the cud for you with so little hope of progress.
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...

Last edited by Childlike Empress; 20th February 2015 at 03:59 PM.
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 20th February 2015, 04:08 PM   #52
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
I wasn't necessarily talking about you. We clarified your motivation already. Your sources have their broader narrative collapsing, which is nice to watch. You can ignore the inner causes and instead focus on one half of the outer proxy situation (and connected strawmen) as long as you will, you'll convince nobody but yourself (and not even that, given the consistence of your tries to impress me ).

I can tell you what this means, though, jimbob, as Border Reiver used the strawman both ways in a single paragraph: Nobody serious is claiming that all of Maidan were "hopeless dupes of the west" and nobody is claiming that the "reaction [was] totally uninfluenced by Russia". The claims you have to prove for your task outlined in the post above are much more extreme than that, though.
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 02:22 AM   #53
angrysoba
Philosophile
 
angrysoba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Osaka, Japan
Posts: 22,624
Originally Posted by dudalb View Post
Facist Italy and Nazi Germany had very badly planned economies. In the end Il Duce and Der Fuehrer had zero understanding of basic economics. In fact,the inefficency of the Nazi economy...even in the area of rearmament and arms production..created an incredible amount of waste, and was a principle reason that Germany lost the war.
Yes, Germany improved under Speer, but it was too late by then. Under Fritz Todt there had been too much variety in weaponry with too many specialist parts.
__________________
"The thief and the murderer follow nature just as much as the philanthropist. Cosmic evolution may teach us how the good and the evil tendencies of man may have come about; but, in itself, it is incompetent to furnish any better reason why what we call good is preferable to what we call evil than we had before."

"Evolution and Ethics" T.H. Huxley (1893)
angrysoba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 02:25 AM   #54
angrysoba
Philosophile
 
angrysoba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Osaka, Japan
Posts: 22,624
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
Oh yes, I should have made it clear that I was just referring to the propaganda.

But they were still planned.
I think that planned economies are generally going to be badly planned if they are planned by people - The Culture could probably manage, but it is fictional.

JK Galbraith was quite interesting on the subject of the economies in WWII. Somewhere I read (I think it was in one of his books) that the UK was about the only fully mobilised war economy for much of the war.
Almost everyone at the time believed in planned economies. George Orwell thought it was a great idea even though 1984 suggests it wasn't.
__________________
"The thief and the murderer follow nature just as much as the philanthropist. Cosmic evolution may teach us how the good and the evil tendencies of man may have come about; but, in itself, it is incompetent to furnish any better reason why what we call good is preferable to what we call evil than we had before."

"Evolution and Ethics" T.H. Huxley (1893)
angrysoba is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 02:59 AM   #55
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Yesterday evening on Maidan:

YouTube Video This video is not hosted by the ISF. The ISF can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website.
I AGREE

("Shame! Shame! Shame!")

Poor Porky.

In case anybody is wondering why I don't even go near the latest "Brown Noses" "revelations", it's because of his "noxious odor" as Eric Draitser calls it in this pretty good piece.

Originally Posted by Counterpunch
The western media is busily trying to prop up their failed narrative of “Russian aggression” in Ukraine in a desperate attempt to legitimize their consciously deceitful reporting. To do so, they are now relying not on experts or western intelligence reports, but a discredited blogger and his corporate media chums. [...]

I could add some personal experiences revolving around our Syria research and fights contributor Charles Wood, an actual forensic analyst, fought with Higgins exposing his deep dishonesty, but I'll leave it at "discredited" (the stink, again...)
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...

Last edited by Childlike Empress; 21st February 2015 at 03:10 AM.
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 03:03 AM   #56
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Me
You coming back after an initial little mini-rant minutes after my post.

It's something you have to clear up with yourself, not me, and given the countless times you haven't read my posts, you're on your own there. I just have better things to do than to chew the cud for you with so little hope of progress.

Quote:
Me
I looked at what you said, which was:
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
jimbob, you're increasingly getting on my nerves with your silly going round in circles. As I said, your motivation is obvious: to convince yourself that your sources of information are reliable. Leave me out of it or face a total end of communication.
I notice that you haven't actually disputed the evidence

Quote:
You coming back after an initial little mini-rant minutes after my post.
I think you quoted the wrong post because it was 19-hours after your previous post and nearly a day after my previous post.

It does show that reputable news organisations are giving a more nuanced picture than one-eyed propaganda outlets that you have posted links to.
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
BBC story covering the Far Right in Ukraine

Quote:
Only one government minister has links to nationalist parties - though he is in no way a neo-Nazi or fascist. And the speaker of parliament, Volodymyr Groysman, is Jewish. He has the third most powerful position in the country after the president and prime minister.

But Ukrainian officials and many in the media err to the other extreme. They claim that Ukrainian politics are completely fascist-free. This, too, is plain wrong.
Quote:
Azov Battalion

As Mr Korotkykh's case demonstrates, the ultra-nationalists have proven to be effective and dedicated fighters in the brutal war in the east against Russian-backed separatists and Russian forces, whose numbers also include a large contingent from Russia's far right.

As a result, they have achieved a level of acceptance, even though most Ukrainians are unfamiliar with their actual beliefs.

The volunteer Azov Battalion is a case in point.
Quote:
Azov is just one of more than 50 volunteer groups fighting in the east, the vast majority of which are not extremist, yet it seems to enjoy special backing from some top officials:
Interior Minister Arsen Avakov and his deputy Anton Gerashchenko actively supported the parliament candidacy of Andriy Biletsky, the Azov and Patriot of Ukraine commander
Vadim Troyan, another top Azov official and Patriot of Ukraine member, was recently named police chief for the Kiev region
Mr Korotkykh is also an Azov member

Ukraine's media have been noticeably silent on this subject.
The mainstream media does cover these issues, despite assertions that they are simply propaganda for "the west".


Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
I wasn't necessarily talking about you. We clarified your motivation already. Your sources have their broader narrative collapsing, which is nice to watch. You can ignore the inner causes and instead focus on one half of the outer proxy situation (and connected strawmen) as long as you will, you'll convince nobody but yourself (and not even that, given the consistence of your tries to impress me ).
I can tell you what this means, though, jimbob, as Border Reiver used the strawman both ways in a single paragraph: Nobody serious is claiming that all of Maidan were "hopeless dupes of the west" and nobody is claiming that the "reaction [was] totally uninfluenced by Russia". The claims you have to prove for your task outlined in the post above are much more extreme than that, though.
I am claiming that Russia is sponsoring the separatists. Given the evidence, that is not an extreme claim - claiming that Russia has not provided direct military support for the separatists is now the extreme claim.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 03:15 AM   #57
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I am claiming that Russia is sponsoring the separatists.

The problem with this is that for you, correct me if I'm wrong, "Russia" is apparently equal to "Putin/the Kremlin" (which is a pretty childish view). If you mean "forces in Russia", we have no disagreement here.

But your sources are claiming that the actual Russian army is fighting there, and provide not nearly sufficient evidence, and that's your problem, not mine.
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...

Last edited by Childlike Empress; 21st February 2015 at 03:17 AM.
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 03:19 AM   #58
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
I think you quoted the wrong post because it was 19-hours after your previous post and nearly a day after my previous post.

No, I didn't. Read the sentence again. Your "initial little mini-rant" is this one 14 minutes after my post.
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 03:28 AM   #59
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Yesterday evening on Maidan:

YouTube Video This video is not hosted by the ISF. The ISF can not be held responsible for the suitability or legality of this material. By clicking the link below you agree to view content from an external website.
I AGREE

Poor Porky.

In case anybody is wondering why I don't even go near the latest "Brown Noses" "revelations", it's because of his "noxious odor" as Eric Draitser calls it in this pretty good piece.




I could add some personal experiences revolving around our Syria research and fights contributor Charles Wood, an actual forensic analyst, fought with Higgins exposing his deep dishonesty, but I'll leave it at "discredited" (the stink, again...)
Let's just take one example - the satellite photos of the August rocket attacks on the Ukrainian positions.

What is the innocent explanation for the scorchmarks and tyre tracks in Russian territory on the correct bearing to account for the origin of the attacks? I read the counterpunch article and again it truncated the quote:

Quote:
The so called study relied heavily on “crater patterns from satellite photos of three battlefields,” and it is from these crater patterns, and the equally dubious “tyre tracks” that the authors of the study drew their conclusions. However, even the independent military forensics expert contacted by The Guardian “warned that the accuracy of crater analysis in determining direction of fire on the basis of satellite photography was scientifically unproven.”
As opposed to the Guardian article

Quote:
An independent military forensics expert warned that the accuracy of crater analysis in determining direction of fire on the basis of satellite photography was scientifically unproven, but said that the images of firing positions on the Russian side of the border were compelling and raised questions of what they were doing there.

Or this in the counterpunch article

Quote:
Perhaps most germane to this discussion is The Guardian’s own reporting last summer, which it references in this article, of Russian military vehicles crossing the border into Ukraine – a significant charge that would be taken seriously if there were one shred of tangible proof. But alas there isn’t. There is only the word of The Guardian’s reporter Shaun Walker, who conveniently could not get a photograph or video of the alleged military vehicles crossing into Ukraine. One would think with mobile phones all equipped with cameras and the vast resources of a major western media outlet, not to mention the seemingly all-encompassing global surveillance architecture at the disposal of western governments, at least some credible, verifiable evidence would have emerged. But no, we just have to take the Guardian’s word for it.
Except it wasn't just Shaun Walker, but also Roland Oliphant for the Telegraph, together with BBC reporters also mentioning the movement of weaponry to the border. There were some photos, just none of the border crossing at night.

That article doesn't look particularly rigorous.

An NY Times article about this story, with lots of photos - and asking why the Russian "humanitarian convoy" trucks were nearly empty
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 03:46 AM   #60
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
Let's just take one example

Nope, count me out. This guy makes me vomit. Ever tried to find flaws with their "analysis"? Or do you just accept it at face value? Try it, and should you find some, even marginal, try to make them correct their "findings". Good luck even getting your comments posted. Ask the mentioned Charles Wood.
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 05:28 AM   #61
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
For the putsch anniversary, here are three maps to ponder.







__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 08:46 AM   #62
LSSBB
Devilish Dictionarian
 
LSSBB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: An elusive house at Bachelors Grove Cemetery
Posts: 15,822
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
For the putsch anniversary, here are three maps to ponder.
Oh yes, let's all engage in justification for bad behavior, because the saintly East* must be defended against the dastardly West*.



* - Please note - I do not myself believe in the artificial distinction of East vs. West and provide these terms only to communicate my impression of the recommended activity.



ETA: Please also note - I fully expect to be ignored. None are so blind as those willing to be so.
__________________
"Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have." (Eckhart Tolle, 2004)

Last edited by LSSBB; 21st February 2015 at 08:48 AM.
LSSBB is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 21st February 2015, 04:45 PM   #63
CapelDodger
Penultimate Amazing
 
CapelDodger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Cardiff, South Wales
Posts: 22,748
Originally Posted by McHrozni View Post
This would put Tudor England into totalitarian camp, meaning your own definition of Fascism would encompass it.

Just saying.
In the dreams of Henry VIII, Edward VI and Mary but such was the doctrinal confusion of the times - most of which they were responsible for - they failed in practice. Elizabeth's regime was remarkably laissez-faire; even warfare was privatised.

Quote:
Let's stick to post-industrial revolution regimes, shall we?
That would seem more appropriate.

Quote:
This is changing, fast. Traditionally orthodox church was seen and (ab)used as a crucial ally, even vassal of the state.
I'm not sure it's changing that fast. The Tsars and the Church were intimately linked; Holy Mother Russia as the new Byzantium was much more than a slogan for them. The Church survived Communism, of course, but at the cost of remaining anchored in the 18thCE so I'm doubtful they can really make much impression in the modern world. All is flux, though.



Quote:
Perhaps, but the war is moving on more slowly than our debate can anyway, so we can indulge.
The vanguard of the rebel field-army appears to have arrived in the Mariupol area so things will probably start heating up now.

Quote:
How would you classify Russia, if not fascist? Surely a similar authoritarian to totalitarian, conservative, aggressive, militaristic, xenophobic regime existed in the past several times, who do you think is the best historically similar example?
The Sioux Nation.

Serbia might fit the bill, from its earliest days. And post-Meiji Japan is a rather disturbing example, now I think about it.
__________________
It's a poor sort of memory that only works backward - Lewis Carroll (1832-1898)

God can make a cow out of a tree, but has He ever done so? Therefore show some reason why a thing is so, or cease to hold that it is so - William of Conches, c1150
CapelDodger is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 22nd February 2015, 11:32 AM   #64
dudalb
Penultimate Amazing
 
dudalb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 37,651
Originally Posted by LSSBB View Post
Oh yes, let's all engage in justification for bad behavior, because the saintly East* must be defended against the dastardly West*.



* - Please note - I do not myself believe in the artificial distinction of East vs. West and provide these terms only to communicate my impression of the recommended activity.



ETA: Please also note - I fully expect to be ignored. None are so blind as those willing to be so.
I don't know why CE keeps up her blind support for Putin. He is not going to invade Germany and bring back the German Democratic Republic, also known as East Germany.
__________________
Pacifism is a shifty doctrine under which a man accepts the benefits of the social group without being willing to pay - and claims a halo for his dishonesty.

Robert Heinlein.
dudalb is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 22nd February 2015, 11:54 PM   #65
McHrozni
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 10,479
Originally Posted by CapelDodger View Post
I'm not sure it's changing that fast. The Tsars and the Church were intimately linked; Holy Mother Russia as the new Byzantium was much more than a slogan for them. The Church survived Communism, of course, but at the cost of remaining anchored in the 18thCE so I'm doubtful they can really make much impression in the modern world. All is flux, though.
From what I gather hardline communism damaged that standing. The tide turned somewhat during the Battle for Moscow in '41, but never reclaimed it's status. It's now coming back with a vengeance.

Quote:
The vanguard of the rebel field-army appears to have arrived in the Mariupol area so things will probably start heating up now.
Quite likely. I certainly hope TOWs are under way. Javelins are too advanced, Russia shouldn't get their hands on them. TOWs on the other hand are so widely proliferated it matters little.

Quote:
Serbia might fit the bill, from its earliest days. And post-Meiji Japan is a rather disturbing example, now I think about it.
I assume you mean Serbia after 1991 (still as Yugoslavia at that point)? If so, I certainly agree. Imperial Japan is also a good comparison. Both of those countries could reasonably be called fascist though.
It's not a slur, nor a stretch to call Russia fascist. It's just calling a spade a spade.

McHrozni
McHrozni is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 23rd February 2015, 10:25 AM   #66
kmortis
Biomechanoid
Director of IDIOCY (Region 13)
Deputy Admin
 
kmortis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: New Texas (aka Southern Tier)
Posts: 29,896
Mod WarningKeep it on topic, keep it civil. the topic is not the other members.
Posted By:kmortis
__________________
-Aberhaten did it
- "Which gives us an answer to our question. What’s the worst thing that can happen in a pressure cooker?" Randall Munroe
-Director of Independent Determining Inquisitor Of Crazy Yapping
- Aberhaten's Apothegm™ - An Internet law that states that optimism is indistinguishable from sarcasm
kmortis is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 24th February 2015, 08:11 AM   #67
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
Junk metal show in Kiev and Poroshenko’s mental defeat

Originally Posted by Oriental Review
This week a metal junkyard is exhibited in the centre of Kiev. Thus the incumbent Ukrainian administration seeks to prove “the facts of the Russian aggression in Ukraine”. But in reality they only managed to prove their own ignorance and lack of any military expertise. As a result this show of the modern illusionary art is acquiring no more than polite shrugs of the astonished spectators.

The target audience has already visited the stage. On Sunday it was attended by the high-ranked officials from Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Bulgaria, Spain, Georgia and some other European countries invited to commemorate the first anniversary of the EuroCoup D’Etat which they prefer to call “The Revolution of Dignity”.

The international media and Facebook pages are full of bravada photo reports about “those damned Russians caught red-handed“. Meanwhile any unbiased and informed observer would raise a number of hard questions to the organizers of this scrap show. Let’s walk through Kiev’s St.Mikhail square together. [...]
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 24th February 2015, 03:21 PM   #68
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Even according to the link, at least one item of of equipment is unique to the Russian military, the drone.

Given that such drones are used for artillery spotting, this tallies with accounts that drones were observed before artillery strikes, and with the satellite images showing at least one rocket strike originating in Russia.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 26th February 2015, 04:19 AM   #69
Childlike Empress
Ewige Blumenkraft
 
Childlike Empress's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Ivory Tower
Posts: 14,877
"Maidan commander", putschist big wig and devoted Nazi Andriy Parubiy is in Canada begging for canadian weapons for the fight for "Euro-Atlantic and European values" against the Russian untermensch. He's introduced just as "that country's deputy speaker" to the Globe and Mail reader with no mention of any background. Uncanny.
__________________
De-Putin-Nazify America!
...progress updates [1] [2] [...] [5]...
Childlike Empress is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 26th February 2015, 05:16 AM   #70
McHrozni
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 10,479
One of the last Russian independent newspapers, Novaya Gazeta, published a rather interesting document.

http://www.kyivpost.com/content/ukra...ce-381811.html

Apparently Russian annexation of Crimea and eastern Ukraine was in the works before Yanukovich fled Ukraine. If the document is genuine, it clearly demonstrates just how behind the times the Russian regime really is.

McHrozni
McHrozni is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 02:17 AM   #71
McHrozni
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 10,479
Russia burned through another 3.7 billion dollars in a week.

http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/RUREFEG:IND

At this rate they can last another two years at most. But an estimated half (now more like two thirds) of their reserves are not liquid, plus they will have major issues with debt repayments that start next month.

They will make it to June, but beyond that things get problematic. If oil doesn't recover (until) then, Russians will be in a world of economic pain.

McHrozni
McHrozni is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 11:20 AM   #72
caveman1917
Suspended
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,226
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
Your sources have their broader narrative collapsing, which is nice to watch.
I find it curious that this myth about the purportedly falsified Crimean referendum just keeps coming up. I understand the attraction of the meme that a powerful government figure is secretly manipulating events behind the scenes, but just because it's not directed at a Western government doesn't make it any less of a standard conspiracy theory.

If we look in chronological order at the opinion polls and the referendum results we get (sorry, I can't post links yet - not enough posts, some of this can be found in the wiki article on the referendum)

Prior polls about wanting Crimean reunification with Russia
2009 67%-70%
2010 65%-67%
2011 66%
12-14 march 2014 70%

Then in the referendum about 80% (85% in Sevastopol) voted for reunification (percentage of registered voters to align with opinion polls, not of ballots cast).

april 2014: 83% said that the referendum likely represented the real views of Crimeans
april 2014: 91% considered the referendum free and fair

I'm new and would rather not have to wade through over 100 pages in the prior thread, but has nobody thought of just checking the polls to debunk that one?

Last edited by caveman1917; 27th February 2015 at 11:30 AM.
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 11:25 AM   #73
caveman1917
Suspended
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,226
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
That shows nothing. If acknowledged Russian servicemen have been in Crimea without unit markings or anything (except their equipment) identifying them as Russian, one can't say that any Russian servicemen in Ukraine would have military IDs.
Actually it does. Special forces can go in specific cases on missions without any ID, but Russian army units do not ever go on missions with civilian passports. Either they carry military IDs which is the rule, or they carry nothing in specific cases for some special forces units, and that's only temporary.

ETA: Though it should be pointed out that Poroshenko is among civilian passports also holding 1 military ID (in his right hand the third from the front, recognizable by the bright red colour).

Last edited by caveman1917; 27th February 2015 at 11:44 AM.
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 11:30 AM   #74
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 15,964
Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
Actually it does. Special forces can go in specific cases on missions without any ID, but Russian army units do not ever go on missions with civilian passports. Either they carry military IDs which is the rule, or they carry nothing in specific cases for some special forces units, and that's only temporary.
We know that Russia has been using unmarked units - Putin denied it then admitted it, whilst denying that he had ever denied it.

Why would an unmarked unit acting with (increasingly threadbare) plausible deniability decide to keep something that would completely ruin their cover that they are not Russian servicemen?
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 11:56 AM   #75
caveman1917
Suspended
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,226
Originally Posted by Border Reiver View Post
And the Maidan movement evolved rather different fomr the East - the Maidan occupied public space intially, while the East started its movement by sending armed men into public buildings right at the beginning.
That is not correct, protests by the East started almost simultaneous with the Maidan protests. It was only after Maidan took over the government (and let's not forget that 81% of the people in East Ukraine were opposed to Maidan - sorry, still can't link to the poll) that the Eastern protests started taking over government buildings. If anything there was more time between the start of protests and takeover of government buildings for the Anti-Maidan than the Maidan.

ETA rb.com.ua/eng/projects/omnibus/8840/ I do seem able to just post the url if I leave the http part out of it

Last edited by caveman1917; 27th February 2015 at 12:35 PM.
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 12:06 PM   #76
caveman1917
Suspended
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,226
Originally Posted by jimbob View Post
We know that Russia has been using unmarked units - Putin denied it then admitted it, whilst denying that he had ever denied it.
Governments lie and use dirty tricks, I'm not defending Putin here or saying that there are no Russian military units in Ukraine. Just saying that showing civilian passports does not constitute evidence.

Quote:
Why would an unmarked unit acting with (increasingly threadbare) plausible deniability decide to keep something that would completely ruin their cover that they are not Russian servicemen?
I'm not following you here. Russian military personnel on active duty are required to hand in their civilian passports and use military IDs instead. Special forces can sometimes go on temporary missions without any ID (military or civilian). Reserves have both a civilian passport and military ID (when they get called up they would then have to hand in the civilian one).

I don't think Poroshenko claimed that the IDs were from the Crimean forces, so I'm not sure how these two things are related.

In any case, since P(civilian passport | Russian volunteer) > P(civilian passport | active military unit) and using two hypotheses, H1: the soldiers the IDs were taken from are active Russian units, H2: the soldiers the IDs were taken from are volunteers, we find after applying Bayes' theorem

P(H1 | passports)/P(H2 | passports) < P(H1)/P(H2) so the evidence increases the volunteer hypothesis wrt the active unit hypothesis. Hence why I'm claiming that it doesn't constitute evidence for Poroshenko's claim.

ETA: does this forum have a way for latex formulas?

Last edited by caveman1917; 27th February 2015 at 12:07 PM.
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 01:27 PM   #77
caveman1917
Suspended
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 5,226
Originally Posted by Childlike Empress View Post
For the putsch anniversary, here are three maps to ponder.
This is also something good to ponder, a poll done in april 2014 shows that only 51% of Ukrainians consider the post-Maidan interim government legitimate. It doesn't split the data with respect to West and East Ukraine, but judging from other data it will probably be a strong majority in the West and a strong minority in the East.

The interesting thing about this poll is that it asks about media habits and how people get informed and does give this data by region, which along with having a fixed point (the Crimeans themselves saying their referendum was fair) and a comparison (a strong majority in West Ukraine considers it not to have been fair, a strong majority in East Ukraine considers it to have been fair) allows one to deduce the (frightening) effectiveness of the Western propaganda machine.

It would be interesting to get data to also deduce the effectiveness of the Russian propaganda machine, but by lacking a suitable "fixed point" I haven't been able to do so yet.

bbg.gov/wp-content/media/2014/06/Ukraine-research-brief.pdf
caveman1917 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 02:14 PM   #78
CapelDodger
Penultimate Amazing
 
CapelDodger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Cardiff, South Wales
Posts: 22,748
Originally Posted by McHrozni View Post
From what I gather hardline communism damaged that standing [of the Orthodox Church]. The tide turned somewhat during the Battle for Moscow in '41, but never reclaimed it's status. It's now coming back with a vengeance.
Superficially, in my opinion. Three or four generatons of anti-clerical propaganda are not shucked off easily, nor its association with everything backward and ignorant. Nationalists don't mind that, of course, nor do the ignorant and backward; it boils down to how much appeal nationalism can generate.

Quote:
I assume you mean Serbia after 1991 (still as Yugoslavia at that point)?
No, Serbia from its beginnings in the early 19thCE. The dream of a Greater Serbia encompassing most of the Balkans and dominating the rest was always at the heart of it. That rubbed up against the Austrians, of course, hence the trigger for WWI. After that the Confederation of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was overthrown by a Serbian coup (the army was almost entirely Serb) to become Yugoslavia - Greater Serbia, in effect. Tito kept the lid on that but the army remained predominantly Serbian, and the dream lived on, emerging as nightmare.

Pig-******* to the bone.

Quote:
If so, I certainly agree. Imperial Japan is also a good comparison. Both of those countries could reasonably be called fascist though.
It's not a slur, nor a stretch to call Russia fascist. It's just calling a spade a spade.
I'm long past caring. Lets just not confuse it with Nazi Germany or Stalinist Russia.
__________________
It's a poor sort of memory that only works backward - Lewis Carroll (1832-1898)

God can make a cow out of a tree, but has He ever done so? Therefore show some reason why a thing is so, or cease to hold that it is so - William of Conches, c1150
CapelDodger is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 02:27 PM   #79
CapelDodger
Penultimate Amazing
 
CapelDodger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Cardiff, South Wales
Posts: 22,748
Originally Posted by McHrozni View Post
Russia burned through another 3.7 billion dollars in a week.

http://www.bloomberg.com/quote/RUREFEG:IND

At this rate they can last another two years at most. But an estimated half (now more like two thirds) of their reserves are not liquid, plus they will have major issues with debt repayments that start next month.

They will make it to June, but beyond that things get problematic. If oil doesn't recover (until) then, Russians will be in a world of economic pain.
Default is a much more credible threat than nuclear weapons, and an even more devastating prospect. Putin will have the financial world on his side.

I hope they do make it to June; my last market-linked investment plan cashes out in April.
__________________
It's a poor sort of memory that only works backward - Lewis Carroll (1832-1898)

God can make a cow out of a tree, but has He ever done so? Therefore show some reason why a thing is so, or cease to hold that it is so - William of Conches, c1150
CapelDodger is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 27th February 2015, 02:38 PM   #80
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13,669
Originally Posted by caveman1917 View Post
Governments lie and use dirty tricks, I'm not defending Putin here or saying that there are no Russian military units in Ukraine. Just saying that showing civilian passports does not constitute evidence.



I'm not following you here. Russian military personnel on active duty are required to hand in their civilian passports and use military IDs instead. Special forces can sometimes go on temporary missions without any ID (military or civilian). Reserves have both a civilian passport and military ID (when they get called up they would then have to hand in the civilian one).

I don't think Poroshenko claimed that the IDs were from the Crimean forces, so I'm not sure how these two things are related.

In any case, since P(civilian passport | Russian volunteer) > P(civilian passport | active military unit) and using two hypotheses, H1: the soldiers the IDs were taken from are active Russian units, H2: the soldiers the IDs were taken from are volunteers, we find after applying Bayes' theorem

P(H1 | passports)/P(H2 | passports) < P(H1)/P(H2) so the evidence increases the volunteer hypothesis wrt the active unit hypothesis. Hence why I'm claiming that it doesn't constitute evidence for Poroshenko's claim.

ETA: does this forum have a way for latex formulas?

So serving regular forces are 'volunteering' and the army is letting them go to a foreign country and fight against a legitimate Government?

Can you think of any other country that would let it's army go and fight as volunteers for an Insurgency fighting against a European Government?

It's ridiculous. ANy Russian serving military in the Ukraine are there on the orders of their Government.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Non-USA & General Politics

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:31 PM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2014, TribeTech AB. All Rights Reserved.
This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.