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Messages - Maelstrom

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General Discussion / Perhaps Why Pregnancy Is So Dangerous
« on: April 09, 2006, 05:11:18 pm »
Leebot covered a lot of the same things (and probably better), but I figure a reply is still in order.

Quote from: Lord J esq
The flaw in their logic is that equal treatment makes the unborn culpable for attacking their mother's bodies.

See, this is where you are wrong (again).  They may hold the fetus and the woman to be the same *value*, but they don't hold them to the same level of *responsibility* (because again, the woman can "decide" to kill the fetus through abortion or possibly other means, but the fetus never "decides" to harm the mother's organs; still, it doesn't rule out the possibility of aborting the fetus if the fetus is going to end up dying naturally anyway).  And to boot, the woman is the one deciding to engage in this conflict for resources (by getting pregnant), whereas the fetus has no say in it.  But I've said this at least twice already.

Frankly, it's not like the religious right believed there is equality between the fetus and mother (not unlike how there is not equality between a child and a parent), and it's rude to assume they do in that "satire."  That point never had to be argued.  To say these people generally do is an unnecessary (an incorrect/unfair) demonization of those that disagree with you (it's only funny when it's accurate, when it fits).

My poll was situated to point out this absurdity. Thus, to correct this absurdity the anti-abortion miscreants are forced to conclude that the unborn must actually receive preferential treatment under the law--an even more absurd proposition, because it ranks the unborn above their mothers.

Honestly, it's less a matter of "treatment" and more of a matter of "accountability."  Granted, the mother faces a unique disadvantage here (strictly because the fetus is dependant on the pregnant mother, which affects her range of behaviors for a time), but there still remains a lot of advantages (and responsibilities) that remain with a mother regardless of whether it's compared to a fetus or a born baby.  And while the pregnant mother suffers compared to other mothers, it's also worth noting that the fetus suffers compared to born babies, too (since certain anti-abortionists will allow for a mother's health exception of some kind, whereas born babies face no such danger).

And besides, some people will argue that's it's just as absurd (or moreso) to believe a fetus (which is considered a baby in some circles, whether you like it or not) should be at a disadvantage, that they should be completely at mercy to things going on around them and unable to protect themselves (whereas the woman, again, typically could control whether she gets pregnant in the first place).

If you expect anti-abortionists to believe that a born human has more value than a fetus, you must give an example that holds "responsibility" constant.  Again, that's why your burning building example works.  You don't need to cover any example that doesn't control for responsibility, because doing will just waste attention (before people lose their focus and devolve into a piss-fest).  K.I.S.S.

And seriously, "anti-abortion miscreants?"  There are plenty of zealots and genuine people (and others in between) on both sides of the argument.  While it's *possible* for one side to have a significant "advantage" in the concentration of "good" people, you can't deny humanity of many (most?) people on both sides, nor can you hide the fact that many on your side are motivated by the wrong reasons (such as self-interest).  Granted, the concentrations can get pretty lopsided if we were talking about nazism or racial/ethnic/religious violence, and strongly-charged rhetoric can be approprioate then, but that's not the kind of issue we are dealing with here.

General Discussion / Perhaps Why Pregnancy Is So Dangerous
« on: April 08, 2006, 03:15:01 pm »
Quote from: Lord J esq
Maelstrom, dear me! You make some fine points, and if I seriously believed that fetuses are criminals, you might even have a case! As it is, I do not, so you do not. This is the end of the line. It cannot be ended further.

My (at least early) argument was never about whether fetuses were criminals, but that your "satire" was an unfair analogy in the first place.  There is a responsibility/accountability of the would-be mother that makes your turning-of-the-tables unfair, because the fetus is acting strictly involuntary, whereas the would-be mother typically voluntarily "started the war."

Your burning building example, on the other hand, *is* cohesive (when adapted properly), because it removes that accountability element that complicates your initial example (seeing as these are third parties to the fetuses, and these fetuses aren't the force hurting the born people, it's the fire in the building that's the problem).

Is this making sense?  If you concede this point, then we are done.

General Discussion / Perhaps Why Pregnancy Is So Dangerous
« on: April 07, 2006, 12:49:26 pm »
Well, you did get the other half of the word right.

Still, I meant it strictly as an aside.  It's not the most important thing going on in my post.  :P

General Discussion / Something I'd like to recommend
« on: April 07, 2006, 12:47:24 pm »
It's deservedly considered one of the best (if not the best) RPG Maker 2K games out there.  Things can get a little slow at times, but it's still very good.

I still need to give Ep 6 a go.

General Discussion / Perhaps Why Pregnancy Is So Dangerous
« on: April 07, 2006, 02:57:55 am »
Quote from: Lord J esq
And so I exploit this lack of qualification to come up with a ridiculous scenario, at which they (or you on their behalf)--without reconsidering their underlying premise--simply resort to the illogic that the unborn deserve not equal treatment, but superior treatment. It's the same bullshit as before, Malestrom.

It's not the "same bullshit."  Your parody only refutes the idea that the fetus and the woman are complete equals, both in terms of value and actions.  You are going to have to embrace a different device to actually disprove this more aggressive concept.

(It's Mael, by the way)

Now fetuses are superior to real people under the law?

In your burning building example, compared to a infant that's made no informed decision leading to its life being put in danger?  Hardly.  No two year-old can make a decision with legal responsibility.  If you paid better attention to my clauses, you would recognize that the favorable treatment only applies when one party made a decision to put its life at risk or undergo a hardship.  In fact, even adults wouldn't be given lower priority, unless they were crazy enough to run *into* a burning building in a criminal or deliberately suicidical way (in which case it's their own damn fault if they die).

As for embryos, many religious sorts consider them being stored/frozen as immoral in the first place, so it should be a moot point in their eyes.


Now, I'll save you some trouble, because you probably want to rework your story so that these are properly developing fetuses, and you want to make an anti-abortionist choose between the life of a fetus and the life of an innocent baby.  That's fine; you'll trap the die-hard purists in that camp at last.  However, some others will offer this cohesive pecking order:

1) Born people that haven't chosen to put their lives at risk
2) Fetuses, which obviously have never chosen to put their lives at risk
3) Born people who decide to put their livelihood at risk

So they will "properly" save the lives of born babies and other people before the unborn sorts, as you would hope.  Some of the "religious" sorts actually hesitate to admit this is really how they feel, but this tempered version, compared to the absolutes we hear from them, is actually reassuring.

In other words, there are people that will favor the lives of the born ahead of a fetus, but with not so much separation that they will sacrifice a fetus willy-nilly or for an amount of organ damage to the mother that is fairly typical and non-substantial.  If there are circumstances that are terribly unforseen (rape i.e. the deprivation of choice, major risk to the mother, and optionally an unusual turn of events that leads to economic depravity), then the advantage of being born can supercede, since the scenario violates the spirit of 3) and would invoke the woman as a 1) instead.

I don't know if you intend to fight these people as well, but you can imagine that their logic is quite incompatible with your piece of satire (because of the incongruous notion of responsibility, and the reality that they don't really believe in equality between the fetus and born people in the first place).  While these people aren't making the most noise, I can assure you that they are the ones with the deciding votes at the moment (they may be electing a lot of zealots who want strong anti-abortion policy, but that doesn't mean that's what the voters precisely want).

General Discussion / Perhaps Why Pregnancy Is So Dangerous
« on: April 06, 2006, 06:44:55 am »
Quote from: Lord J esq
You are missing the point, then. It isn't my belief that the unborn ought to be treated equally with human children and adults. This is the belief of those religious nutjobs who insist that a fetus (or embryo, or blastocyst) is "a human life" deserving of the protections and entitlements typically afforded to human beings.

In their defense, you're confusing two points, and perhaps I should have clarified:

1) In one sense of "standard": Is the life precious?
2) In another sense of "standard": Can that life be held accountable for its actions ... yet?

I'm not here to argue #1, because that topic is what your "satire" addresses.  However, my concern revolves around the neglect of #2, because the analogy assumes that equality holds for it as well.

The point is that the fetus's actions (and very matter of existence) are involuntary (from its point of view), uneducated decisions, whereas the woman / older girl typically (although not always) had a say in the creation of the fetus.  The would-be mother usually makes some kind of decision that acknowledges the potential pregnancy, whereas obviously the fetus cannot be held responsible for what it does to the would-be mother, including the very obvious burdens it imposes on its guardian.

Even many of the "religious nutjobs" would agree there is a matter of accountability that differentiates the fetus and the pregnant one.  Some go on to argue that the fetus thus deserves *more* protections that the would-be mother, because of point #2 (particularly in the decision to get pregnant, which is *usually* there), and hence the parody is no longer fair.

The right wingers would add the woman (and some man) are the ones who decides to start the "war," not the fetus.

Just because they think the fetus's and woman's life are equal doesn't mean that they think the terms of engagemenent between the two are.  And that's why your parody doesn't work, because it implies both "sides" had an equal say and responsibility, which is obviously false.

General Discussion / Perhaps Why Pregnancy Is So Dangerous
« on: April 06, 2006, 03:54:53 am »
It died when you created a second thread on abortion, and when you assumed that a fetus/unborn (who never has a say into whether the pregnancy started in the first place) could possibly be held to the same standard as a woman or an older girl that typically makes the decision to either go for it or roll the dice.

It's not satire; it's propoganda.

General Discussion / Perhaps Why Pregnancy Is So Dangerous
« on: April 06, 2006, 03:28:40 am »
I'm all for genuine political debate (and plenty of Republican bashing), but the hypothesis Lord is running with is absurd.

I mean, if there is a point, it should be that women in pregnancy should actually be given credit for the strain and labor involved, and that they should perhaps be entitled to certain resources to make sure both the fetus/baby and mother can properly withstand and recover from the ordeal.

It's just how I see it.

I've only got one at OLR.

Of course, one might ask why anyone in their right mind would register at OLR.  Apparently, I'm not.

Too many recognizable series are referenced here.

I seriously doubt this is real.

I can't testify to how substantial these additions are, but I'm made use of them all, so I figure they are worth at least considering.

C0230-C0236 - Tech learning progress (00 - 08 )

C0237-C023D - Techs learned (00, 80, C0, E0, F0, F8, FC, FE, FF)

C214B-C23EA - ST Tech power: 12 bytes per tech, 8 techs per character.  If healing, 2nd byte affects power.  If attack, 10th byte affects power.

C23EB-C247A - Some extra data for 12 combo techs.  (4th = Crono's Confuse power, 5th = Triple Kick power, 9th = Double Cure?, 10th = Grand Dream, 11th = Twin Charm?, 12th = Slurp Kiss)

C253C-C2573 = Tech MP Cost (7 characters, 8 techs apiece)

C2577-C257F = Redundant MP Costs (Confuse, Triple Kick, Life2, Charm, Slurp Cut, Cure2, Frog Squash, Charm, Kiss)

C29D7-C2AD6 = "Stat increase" values (The "Item Secondary" byte "04" points to this array): 128 elements, 2 bytes per element
Byte 1 = Stats to change:
Power ~ 80
Speed ~ 40
Stamina ~ 20
Hit ~ 10
Evade ~ 8
Magic ~ 4
Magic Defense ~ 2

You can combine stats to change, but they will all be changed by the same amount.

Byte 2 = Change:
00 - 7F: Increase by 0 to 127
80 - FF: Decrease by 128 to 1

Private changes since last release: (up for debate)

Replacing "HyperEther" with "Adrenaline": Casts "Haste" on target, costs 10000 GP, used in battle.  This addition serves to complement the "Barrier" and "Shield" items.

If Crono is your lead, the Spekkio you fight is the easiest form you have not beaten yet.  This setup allows the player to access all forms of Spekkio and all of its prizes without having to complete the Ocean Palace first.  Each of the six forms can be accessed by having a particular non-Crono character as the lead.

Golem's magic owns less (down 29%, so Ayla isn't taking nearly 400 damage from spells).  This change isn't really that important if you keep making Golems change the element they copy, but it will make broken magic-chains less annoying.

The Choras and Black Omen shops have been tweaked to accomodate replacing HyperEther with Adrenaline.

Fixed Grand Dream (base power up 29%, since Frog Squash's base power is "up" 30%).

Changed Magic Seal from +10 Mgc & Mg Def to +20 Mgc.  It could be over the top, and it's a little bit of a bummer to lose the Mgc + Mg Def combo, but this brings the Magic Seal on par with the Power Seal.

That Defender by Magus's statue is replaced with a MuscleBelt.  That +15 Defense may seem like a big deal, but with the way the damage mechanics work, the MuscleBelt is less useful at the beginning at the game than it will at the end, so there's no harm in having this item available early.

Chrono Compendium Discussion /'s it look?
« on: April 04, 2006, 07:55:11 pm »
This thread almost smells like a challenge to us to give you ideas to make the Compendium (even) better.

I'm a bit of a newbie here, but I can attest that CC is a thorough (the Encyclopedia) and responsive entity.  Regarding the latter, I was actually a bit surprised, impressed, and even a little intimidated when ZeaLitY announced my Level Zero mod right after I started a thread for it.

Of course, each person and project at CC has different needs. This guy wants to help with a project as a writer.  My "project" could use playtesters, although 1) I'd probably do a lot better just calling my mod a "hardtype hack", 2) a non-story non-media hack isn't going to be nearly as awesome a major partial conversion, and 3) testing a balance hack by playing through the entire Chrono Trigger game (easily 20 hours due to the slower gameplay) isn't exactly the most rewarding activity; regarding 2), the work I've invested is substantial (over a couple hundred of hours), but it's really not going to compare to these more ambitous projects.  And I have no idea what Crimson Echoes needs.

The answer that comes to mind here is to bring more people to the Compendium, so that people who want to create some content for Chrono Trigger are more likely to find the partners and help they need.  Of course, there are difficulties here: one, it is hard to promote CC in such a way that doesn't make you a jackass spammer.  Two, the people who come in will generally (although not always) lack the experience and determination that was generally required for the current bunch of members to arrive here in the first place, so we would probably have to deal with more newbies; still, newbies are still useful for developing interest and beta testing, and a few of them will be motivated to develop into useful contributors.

Quote from: Burning Zeppelin
What the hell Maelstorm? You realize people are dying. More Iraqis have probably died in these 3 years then in Saddams entire reign. And even so, you think killing more of your own people will make things better, killing people to save people getting killed, even if the amount of people we kill is far more then the amount of people being saved? I know each life is priceless but that is not the point.

Getting more of our own people killed isn't a part of my objective.  It's just something that's going to happen the longer you fight a war.

Now, if you are talking about innocent Iraqi people that are getting killed (typically by insurgents, presumably), that was outside the scope of my original analysis.  My discussion was more to point out how unrealistic certain people are when they see the *American* death toll from this war in the single thousands (~2400 now?  but also 17k - 48k wounded)  The point here is that the loss of American lives in war is going to be steep.

But yes, Iraqi lives are extremely important here, too.  It speaks to very much to another thing that will certainly go wrong in war: Not only will the loss of our lives be substantial, but the *innocent* native people of the country we invade will suffer even more; estimates of citivilians killed are around 36,000.  That loss is comparable to the United States losing over 400,000 from some tragedy (seeing as we have over 11x the population Iraq does).  Perhaps this is one area our military has been disappointing in, but I don't think we've made the commitment (in terms of number of people we have over there) needed to keep this under control, and I don't see that being the fault of the people serving over there.  It's one of those things that makes you wonder if any kind of aggressive war, the kind you can't justify unless you rebuild the country afterwards, is going to do more harm than good anyway, and thus would not be worth it.  The cure is worse than the disease or whatever.

So, I'm not saying any of this as an advocate of the Iraq war.  I'm saying it as more of a criticism of people (the White House, much of Congress, and several Americans who bought into the BS, although the government is far more to blame) who wanted this war, because they naively thought it would be easy and acted with excessive optimistism instead of planning with a bad case scenario (not necessarily worst, but a likely unfavorable) in mind.

At the same time, I should also criticize the people who wanted this war that did know the price involved (Iraqi and American lives, plus the $200 billion - $300 billion we've paid so far, which could be as much as $1 trillion total and probably also 4x as many lives lost across the board), especially those who advocate keep taxes low during this time (and hence don't give a damn about our future generations with regard to paying off the debt).

Quote from: Burning Zeppelin
First off, It's almost time for school for me (damn the compulsory school system!) so I will make this short and snappy.
"We" aren't losing many causalties. We are just killing.

Indeed, we aren't taking many casualties (single thousands).  My point was more that we'd need to sacrifice more than that if we are going to eliminate so much of the enemy that has eluded us, but anyone who expects us to have a lower death toll considering the circumstances is delusional.

And as it's been suggested, it'll probably also require a greater military force to cover all the area we would need to.

The point I was trying to make is that even with our great technology and hard work from our military, winning any war like this will still be expensive, and that Bush's promotion of the war (and Congress's reaction now) as something that should be cheap and easy is wrong.  And really, it's a disservice to those in our military who are really doing a great job, given the circumstances.

I hope this clarification makes my message clearer.

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