User talk:Aschlafly/Archive41

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Conservapedia and Search Engines

Hello! I just left a message on the Supreme Court course enrollment page, and had an off-topic question. As I mentioned there, I just discovered Conservapedia during a web search. I have been online for years and have never seen Conservapedia anywhere. What is being done to get Conservapedia "out there" on the web and especially in search engines? Thanks! ecfmusic

Welcome. We are highly ranked in search engines for many key terms, but more efforts in editing, teaching, learning and publicizing are welcome! Godspeed.--Aschlafly 11:37, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

Thank you. How does one contribute to these "efforts" as an individual? I confess my lack of specific knowledge on how this is done, although I am aware that "sponsored" links can be bought. When I have probably seen tens of thousands of links on various search engines, but just one connecting to Conservapedia, it is obvious that a very low overall percentage of search links to the site exist at this point. Responses from anyone reading this post are welcome. ecfmusic 13:18, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

Navigation templates should definetly increase rankings of articles, also linking words that should be but aren't, making a blog about conservapedia, making a specific article part of your signature for a forum, discussing conservapedia in forums and chatrooms --13:21, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

The Christian blog contest

Andy, I do think we might be able to get thousands and thousands of people knowing about Conservapedia though our contest. All we have to do is periodically say in the breaking news section the following: "Have a Christian blog and want more people to know about it? Please go Here." And of course, Conservapedians telling others about the contest would be helpful too. Conservative 11:45, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

Thanks for your response to my post under the thread above, which I retitled "Conservapedia and Search Engines." While word of mouth has historically one of the most effective ways to market a product or service, I am concerned that the millions of people who use search engines daily are being missed in the process. I do not propose buying "sponsored links," as I suspect that the money is not available for such a campaign; I rather wonder if other avenues, such as search tags or widgets could be used in a coordinated effort to get the word out. It might also to be good to add this topic to the "Help" menu and/or to the "Useful Links." Suggestions? ecfmusic 13:43, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

Regarding removal of my articles here

I have been told that you are the person to which I should contact regarding removal of my articles. I have expressed that I no longer want to be involved in this project, and have also expressed that I want my articles here removed - as I do not want my name attached to them here. Regards LChriosa 14:17, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

Perhaps, Andy could rename your account, all edits made by this account would say the name of the new user account -- 50 star flag.png Deborah (contributions) (talk) 14:21, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

Thanks, Deborah, I've responded on the talk for the Main Page.--Aschlafly 19:03, 16 May 2008 (EDT)
Er, wasn't this just a hoax by someone posting copies of 19th century writings or earlier? (Just trying to see if we were trusting enough to be taken in (see assume good faith) or too ignorant to do a Bartleby search.
I'm getting a little tired of people coming here just to subvert the project. Of course, the constant subversion just proves that liberals will stoop at nothing to destroy those who disagree with them. I guess their ideology is too shallow and fragile to survive in the marketplace of ideas. --Ed Poor Talk 21:15, 18 May 2008 (EDT)

why dont you

Why dont you discuss your reverts aschlafly? At the moment the article constitutes placement bias AdenJ 18:49, 16 May 2008 (EDT)

No, your edit was obvious placement bias. We put the important stuff up at the top here. Also, don't comment here, comment on the talk page for the entry.--Aschlafly 18:50, 16 May 2008 (EDT)--Aschlafly 18:50, 16 May 2008 (EDT)


Thanks for unblocking me, I'll be slower in the categories now. --Panda95 14:35, 17 May 2008 (EDT)

I apologize

I am sorry for creating such a politically charged entry, I see how it could be hard to tell the difference between parody and the real thing in that case. I will refrain from injecting such extreme bias into articles. Thank you for only blocking me two hours. Lyra Belaqua talk 17:04, 17 May 2008 (EDT)


Why did you revert my edit on Physics? It was correctly sourced. --CassieLott 21:46, 17 May 2008 (EDT)

It was completely inappropriate for where you placed it. Not every "correctly sourced" quote belongs at the beginning of an entry.--Aschlafly 21:48, 17 May 2008 (EDT)

CE and ISO 8601

Hello Mr. Schlafly,

I have a concern with the CE article. It mentions that BCE and CE are not recognized as part of ISO 8601, but ISO 8601 does not deal with the representations of eras, only dating formats. As such, ISO 8601 does not recognize BC and AD either (I have linked to the ISO 8601 at Talk:CE#ISO_8601). There is no ISO document regarding how eras should be referenced and represented. I think it would be more appropriate to research what MLA or APA standards are, but I don't have either of those manuals. As it stands, I think the article gives the misrepresentation that ISO covers something it does not.

Thank you, --Countryforchrist 10:28, 19 May 2008 (EDT)

Good point, as far as I can tell. It was not my edit. I've removed the ISO 8601 reference per your suggestion.--Aschlafly 13:18, 19 May 2008 (EDT)

Commentary on and around "Dear Aschlafly,"

[sorry if this seems peevish, but this is already a huge file to manipulate when editing, so I've added a section break for comments surrounding our conversation.]]

Liberals tend to cut off and censor debate while conservatives don’t? I’m not so sure about that. Take a look:

[1] [2] [3]

[4] [5] [6]

And that’s just from one debate. Of course, the ultimate irony will be when this is reverted (i.e. censored) and my account is blocked (Hi Karajou!) which I’m sure will be in a matter of seconds. Or you could practice what you preach and allow this to stay, maybe even reply, and unblock my account. You can see I haven’t vandalized, I use a proxy because it seems half the IPs in the world have been blocked. But it’s your site and you can do what you want. I am more than happy to participate in an honest and polite debate (and even to contribute some neutral, factual, apolitical content to this site, which it could use) but don’t pretend conservatives don’t censor debate while simultaneously censoring someone who tries to debate that very fact. It’s unbecoming. Jaguar 10:55, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

If you want to contribute by adding "neutral, factual, apolitical content" to the site, then do it. Don't wax nostalgic about what you could do, right? Are you waiting for fanfare first? Learn together 11:07, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
To be honest, I expected to be blocked by now, but seeing as I'm not (yet) I will get started. Now, if someone does take it upon themselves to block me for merely using a proxy, will you unblock me so I can continue what I start? Jaguar 11:16, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
I will not override the decisions of another Sysop. Obviously adding worthwhile content will make you less likely to be blocked. Learn together 11:21, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
Oh Really? Jaguar 13:34, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
"Jaguar", we have clear rules against sockpuppets and it's tiresome when liberals don't curb abuse by (or even criticize) other liberals. You're not using your real name, you're apparently not using your own IP address, and you're not recognizing vandalism by liberals. Why not wear a ski mask also??? Say something intelligent and people will listen here. Continue to whine on my talk page and I'll block your account.--Aschlafly 14:12, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
I'm not really sure how exactly I'm supposed to "curb abuse" by liberals or anyone else. I'm just a lowly sort-of editor here with a sword of Damocles hanging over my head, probably one talk page post away from an permanent block. I have no powers to do anything beyond revert vandalism on this site, should I happen to see it. And I'm willing to do that. I find it odd that you seem so certain I refuse to criticize liberals. I've made about 5 talk pages posts here and I guess I have not criticized liberals, I haven't defended them en masse, and I haven't criticized Satanists, Nazis, Scientologists, rapists, child abusers, etc., either. Does that indicate that I refuse to? Sure, undoubtedly liberals have vandalized this site. Shame on them. But I have also pointed out several cases of people being banned and having their comments reverted in ongoing debates when they have not vandalized or broken rules, as well as an example of a username blocked when the only edits have been starting new useful articles (if the editor is a vandal or the edits are bad, should not William Proxmire and Eamon de Valera be deleted?). I just find it odd when liberals are said to censor debate, while conservatives thrive on it when several debates here have been (for lack of a better word) censored by conservatives. As for my username, true, it is not my real name. Most users, it seems, do not use their real names here, and while there is a rule against "frivolous" usernames, I really don't think this one qualifies. It's an noble animal and a fine car. I can hardly think of anything less offensive. So that's it. Call it "whining" if you like; it doesn't faze me. I'll get back to editing now. It seems geography is generally uncontroversial area which can use more entries. Feel free to let me know if any of these contributions have problems. Jaguar 21:59, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

So what if he doesn't use his real name? Many users (And Sysops) on this website do not. That seems a bit like a Double Standard, something that Liberals have a monopoly on, or so it seems from reading this site. JEdgar 17:11, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

Um, Andy's not referring to usernames (e.g. Jaguar, JEdgar, Jinxmchue) but the name you are required to enter upon signing up. Jaguar probably signed up with "Joe Blow" or something else obviously fake. Did you enter a fake name, too, JEdgar? Jinxmchue 21:43, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
Um, you're not required to enter a name upon signing up. --HHCrippen 00:50, 24 May 2008 (EDT)
Um, actually, you are. If you go to the "Create account" page, it asks for username, password, email and real name. Jinxmchue 11:45, 24 May 2008 (EDT)
The real name is optional. FernoKlump 13:18, 24 May 2008 (EDT)

Conservative girls do not have a high demand for guys who adhere to a liberal belief system. We've got Liberal friendship, perhaps someone should start Conservative relationships... StatsMsn 05:46, 21 May 2008 (EDT)

I cant imagine liberal guys wanting much to do with a conservative girl anyway. And Az (john) and phillip rayment, I think you are right on the money. Many people have may various beliefs and ideas and one cannot be said to be better than the other or more right. I also find it interesting that the US with its looser gun laws has more gun crime than Australia and NZ with their tight laws. AdenJ 06:41, 21 May 2008 (EDT)

There is some line of cognitive dissonance involved in automatically blocking anybody who makes liberal arguments, but it is understandable for one who pays for a website's bandwidth not to want to run up the bandwidth up with debates when the debating is peripheral to the main purpose of the website. DanH 15:21, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
This page is currently 59 kb in size (or so the link at the top said). Following this link will give you something about half the size of the page and this link will give you something 5x larger than the current talk page. The blocking anyone who makes an argument from a liberal point of view seems to be... odd. The original design for the wiki software was a collaboration tool. Most wikis out there are about collaborative work - and collaboration requires discussion to come to agreement on what is there. Wikipedia just happens to be an encyclopedia built on top of collaboration software. It seems odd for a page with content in a wiki to be locked down and people blocked for attempting to collaborate (not everyone understands the issues in the same way as the idealized conservative viewpoint). The best way to control who/what is on a talk page is to increase the barrier to entry rather than censoring the arguments and blocking the users. This would likely also reduce the workload on the administrators and allow them to create quality articles that would set examples for how the rest of the site should look instead of blocking nearly every user that creates an account. --Rutm 15:49, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

I'm not saying I agree or disagree, only stating that I can understand such actions. DanH 16:17, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

Agreement is not required, if some of the "contributors" oppose the goals of the project. We require liberals to refrain from making ideological edits: they (like us) may only enter trustworthy information.
Users are not blocked for "collaboration" but for breaking down the collaborative process. Instead of working with us, they work against us. Some arguments are unproductive.
What I'd like to see from advocates of liberal ideas is not simply to assert that these ideas are true - but to identify the spokesmen who most prominently advocate the ideas. Also, to give the reasons (if any) that the spokesmen and defenders of these ideas put forth in their support.
Don't waste our time trying to turn each article into a sort of blog entry. That will just get your account blocked again. --Ed Poor Talk 15:59, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
One can read further up on this page (and others) to see a difference in opinions on gun control. Noting that you take issue with climate change, a quick look at or and you will see a group that would be considered social conservative Christians who disagree with the stance that you take. When an article is loaded with bias the question is how does one fix it? The general response appears to be "thats the way its going to be - block anyone who disagrees." Every alternative viewpoint counter to the one given by becomes recast in a negative light. There is a deep cognitive dissonance in claiming that someone trying to add material that does not agree with makes it into a blog while the original article figuratively drips with the author's own bias. --Rutm 17:03, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
To be honest, I think there's a certain level of cognitive dissonance involved in attempting to post to a site with a clearly-identified ideology, and then being in any way surprised or offended when ideas that are contrary to that ideology are not accepted. It seems a bit like walking up to a cage with a label that says "If You Put Your Fingers Through The Bars, You'll Get Bitten"--and then being surprised when putting a finger through the bars results in getting bitten.
I don't agree with all of Mr. Schlafly's viewpoints, or those of the SysOps here. However, I acknowledge that this is their site, specifically created to give them a place to express those views. As such, I regard myself in much the same way I would if I were a visitor in someone else's house, and endeavor to conduct myself accordingly.
--Benp 16:11, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

Springing forth with a new bunch of articles

Materialism and science, Darwinism and materialism, Atheism and science, Evolution and religion, Science and motivation, Intelligent design of life, Hydrocarbon use, Sea level increase, Availability of guns, Boorstin, Glacier shortening, History of Sexuality, Feminist theory, Sam Dash, Uncle Tom, Snowflake, Mole (espionage), Outdoor art, History of painting, Random number --Ed Poor Talk 19:36, 21 May 2008 (EDT)

Awesome, Ed! Hope you can make our June 5th special event!--Aschlafly 21:34, 21 May 2008 (EDT)


Hello, I was going through the list of "red" categories to see if I could fix any, and I wanted to change the non-working category of "journals" in the page: to the established category: - but this article is "protected" - if someone could please be so kind as to temporarily "unprotect" this page so I can change the category, or if someone else could change it, I would appreciate it, thanks! (and if there is a better place to leave this type of request in the future, please do let me know, so I'll not be cluttering your talk page up with requests). -- Taj 10:21, 22 May 2008 (EDT)

Done as requested. I don't know why it was protected. Thanks, Taj, for your efforts. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Aschlafly (talk)
Thank you very much. I'm just going through uncategorized pages list right now, to see if I can help out in anything, if there's anything better you need done please don't hesitate to ask. :) -- Taj 10:31, 22 May 2008 (EDT)

Dear Aschlafly,

I have left Conservapedia several times, only to drift back each time. I suppose this is my way of "ringing the bell" in order to call my own bluff. I'm not going to unveil any personal information to try and bolster my credibility. (I think this would be called an appeal to authority ( ? ) but I'm wading out of my depth now...) I've been here for more than a year now, and you either you see merit in my work or you don't. I will freely admit that this has all the hallmarks of your beloved/hated Parthian Shot, but in my opinion speaking truth to power around here is not typically appreciated. Besides, a Parthian Shot is not, by definition, wrong. That said, I'm not specifically out to get banned, and if you would like for this to be a conversation I'll gladly engage in one. I promise you this: I will directly answer any question you care to ask that does not delve into private details of my personal life, with no evasions or "weasel words," although I suppose it's possible you and I might disagree on which those are. However, if I hold to my promise and then, in return, you duck a question I ask in response, all bets are off.

  • You had a fantastic idea when you started Conservapedia, but you are not an ideal choice for day-to-day administrator. I believe that the site would be better served if you were to remove yourself to a role like a chairman, and designate someone else as a day-to-day arbiter and site leader. I think this would also help focus the site on an achievable objective. Conservapedia is not a battlefront in the culture wars. It isn't a soldier. It is, if you round even a little bit, nothing in the culture wars. What it could be, if you focused on it, is a fantastic resource for homeschoolers (and even public schoolers) interested in conservative principles who would benefit from the "conservative rebuttal" to a lot of common assumptions. Currently, however, the signal-to-noise ratio is so bad that it's essentially impossible to derive any benefit whatsoever.
  • Loyalty is wonderful thing, but you have misplaced yours in backing several of your senior admins. They are not all bad people... but some of them are. It is not a sign of weakness to re-assess your staff and make corrections. Good businesses do it, good churches do it... it's a natural part of any merit-based system.
  • Fwiw, I think you should take the site private - allow anyone to read/search the site, but all editing should require an account and those accounts should be verified in some fashion. Far too much time is wasted responding to vandals and other counter-productive types. Has a single valued contributor to this site started off as a nuisance user? Even if one has, hundreds and hundreds have not, and dealing with those people has siphoned off tremendous man-hours. A senior admin of yours (and I'm not being coy, I just can't remember who it was) told me that you'd see this as a sign of defeat at the hands of whatever-the-euphamism-is-now-for-the-wiki-founded-by-people-who-don't-like-Conservapedia. I can only say "so?" If it's a good idea, let them crow about it. It still makes sense.
  • This site's schadenfreude towards the public school system does nothing positive for its reputation. I'm a huge fan of homeschooling, but let's talk turkey. If homeschooling "exploded" over the next 50 years, what portion of children could we expect to be homeschooled? I think 25% is a ludicrously generous target, but what the heck. At 25% homeschooling, and what the hey let's say 10% other educational models, that's still 65% of the nation going through public schools. By all means, focus on what the schools can be doing better, but the unseemly snideness when things go wrong in a public school is wrongheaded in the extreme.
  • Reagan beat Mondale with 58.8% of the vote, and "other" candidates took 0.7%. Mondale took 40.5% of the vote. What's my point? 40.5% of American voters don't hate America. Liberals don't hate America. They think America should be different than conservatives want, and they could very well be wrong, but they don't hold their beliefs out of hate or stupidity. It is worrying that a Harvard-trained lawyer can't come to grips with the idea that two populations of reasonable, intelligent people can examine the facts and come to two different conclusions. I normally give the benefit of the doubt and assume that you adopt that stance as your "battle" posture, that you don't actually think that way, but why force people to assume good faith? Why not actually be good?

And yes, I think liberal demonization of conservatives is just as idiotic. But, I'm not a liberal and am not interested in helping them get their house in order.

  • Not all conservatives think the same thing. The first "oh, I see" moment I had here was when it was made clear to me that I was considered a Liberal. That is, frankly, stupid. And no, I'm not confusing Republicans with conservatives. I might be more liberal on this site than some, but "conservative" is not a binary characteristic, either on or off.

I'm breaking my own advice, vis. tilting at windmills, but like I said at the beginning I have my own reasons.

Best Regards,

Aziraphale 12:40, 19 May 2008 (EDT) <-Hi, Bohdan...

Aziraphale, I do welcome and appreciate your contributions. I hope that's obvious. I don't post feedback on contributors' talk pages much, and perhaps I should. You've been a valued contributor, and thanks.
As to your points above, I suspect your discomfort stems from some disagreements with conservative principles. You don't say, and perhaps I'm mistaken. But note that several of your criticisms are contradictory (e.g., you implicitly say, first delegate more and second, don't delegate so much!). You culminate with a statement that you're not a liberal, but it's clear you're not a full conservative either. I don't see much in the middle. Either one is pro-life or pro-choice. There's no middle ground. Either one supports same-sex marriage, or he opposes it. There's no compromise. The same could be said about a half-dozen other key issues. I know we try to remain friends to as many as we can, but one can't be all things to all people.
Millions homeschool. That's more than enough to change the world. I know, I know, we have a culture that watches the polls daily and thinks a majority is what matters. Check out all great movements, insights, achievements, discoveries, and inventions. They didn't happen by majority vote, and often a handful were enough for amazing progress.
Something is holding you back from accepting conservative values across-the-board. Maybe it's the views of friends, maybe it's a personal experience, or maybe it's a misunderstanding of what conservatism is. Well, that's why were here. Let go of what is holding you back, and try accepting the logic and emotion of conservatism. Then you won't leave it again. Godspeed.--Aschlafly 13:38, 19 May 2008 (EDT)
First (and per a conversation that happened on the Main Page talk recently) let me say "my expectations for your response were wrong." For that, I apologize. Second, thank you for the kind words. I have to admit, both you and Ed Poor have said similar things recently and I'm not so inhuman as not to appreciate a complement. Thank you. Allow me now to give as much clarity as I can, in an order that makes sense to me for logical flow vs. chronological order.
re: homechooling. I think we're talking across each other at the moment, so to speak. Let me again say that I'm a huge fan of homeschooling. I think the people that homeschool are giving a tremendous gift not just to their children but to the future of the country. That said, I still think Conservapedia's stance towards public schools is far too ghoulish. Public schools will be educating the majority of Americans, if not forever, then for long enough to impact the future of the country for centuries to come. We need to see this as a problem to solve, not to roll our eyes at.
re: delegation. I'm sorry that my earlier comments seem contradictory. I think that you should delegate more, and I also think that those you currently delegate to aren't all suitable. While I've named some of them explicitly in another forum that they had access to (an email list moderated by TK a couple of months ago), I will spell my concerns out for you if you'd like. In the past, I've gotten the impression that you weren't keen to have that kind of laundry aired on your talk page, and within certain bounds I try to respect people's wishes. In any case, with some judicious pruning and the selection of competent replacements, I think you could extricate yourself from the day-to-day operations of the site within a month or two.
I'm not trying to say you should leave. Focus on the Supreme Court section or something, this isn't supposed to be a punishment, it's about finding horses for courses.
re:my liberal or conservative status. I started to type out an explicit list of where I stand, but then I realized that it would probably take this conversation off the rails. I've copy-and-pasted it into a text document, if you think it's relevant I can always bring it back. (I don't hide my political views, and I've posted some of them before, but I'm trying to keep this from turning into a dorm-room BS session.) Suffice to say, I think that being "not fully conservative" from your point of view doesn't make one "liberal," particularly how the word is used around here. And really, "how the word is used around here" is my main concern. Setting aside the exceptions, the vast majority (in the vicinity of 99.99%, to hazard a guess) of the 40% that voted for Mondale (I've picked that election mostly because those two candidates, to me, represented a clear choice of ideology at the time, moreso than in some other elections) didn't do so to undermine America, they did it because they loved American and thought that Reagan's ideology was not best for the country. The same is true of the 40+% of Americans on the losing side in almost every election a conservative wins, as well as the 50+% of the Americans on the winning side when a liberal is victorious. I'm not trying to say that they're right; I'm saying that it is belittling and rude to smear those people, with many of the things that are said in the various "liberal ______" articles here.
My discomfort with Conservapedia is, at its heart, more about Conservapedia than any dispute between myself and conservative principles. As I said at the top, Conservapedia is a fantastic idea, but it's an idea that isn't being executed very well. Lastly, in case any of my comments seem overly harsh, let me point out that just as I don't think liberals deserve the tar-and-feather treatment, I'm not ascribing "evil" motivations towards anyone here. People do what they think is right - I just disagree with several of those people.
Regards, Aziraphale 15:07, 19 May 2008 (EDT)
Aziraphale, let me commend you on the civil and well-thought-out way you've expressed yourself. Often on Conservapedia I see people making good points (perhaps alongside bad points), but do it in a sneering, dismissive, or plain insulting manner.
I don't really understand your point about schools. Yes, most will continue to go to government schools, but that doesn't mean they can't be criticised. Or is your concern there merely the same one as your concern about the "liberal _____" articles?
Andy, I don't think it's helpful to label someone as "not a full conservative". Conservatives can and do have different views on many issues. Certainly, some may be considered "defining" views, but others are not. You and I differ, for example, on gun control. And many views do have middle grounds, including the ones you mentioned. As well as pro-life and pro-choice, one can be undecided, or believe that abortion is wrong not from conception but from a later stage. Similarly, apart from being pro- or anti-homosexual "marriage", one could be in favour of "homosexual relationship registers", or similar, wherein the idea is for something akin to marriage but not quite marriage. On both of these issues, of course, I believe that you and I would have the same views, but it remains true that there are other, "middle ground", views.
I'll finish with a verse from Proverbs that I have on my user page: "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger". Too often here on Conservapedia, we resort to the harsh words instead of the gentle answers. Although many of the points have some validity, the "liberal _____" and similar articles are too much "harsh words" rather than "gentle answers".
Philip J. Rayment 23:17, 19 May 2008 (EDT)
We meet again, Philip!
I appreciate your kind words and courtesy, Philip, as I always have. In response to your direct question, while I might quibble over the word "merely", above, generally you got it right - I'm all for a criticism of schools, perferably with a discussion of how things can be better. Acknowledging in advance that others may see it differently, I think the coverage here of public schools is literally schadenfreude, taking pleasure in the misery of others. With something so important, is "I told you so" really a message worth the words?
As to your other comments, I broadly agree and think it's germane, although I'll admit I've been trying my best to avoid "scope creep" as we say in my biz.
Cheers, Aziraphale 01:39, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
The only reason that I identify posters as liberal or "not fully conservative" is to debunk their claim, express or implied, that they are conservative. This become particularly important when a poster is (a) criticizing the site for what may be due to ideological reasons, (b) insisting that there is a diversity of opinion among conservatives when there really isn't, or (c) telling (misleading) students about what conservative principles or values are.
Aziraphale, for example, you're a valued contributor and we thank you for that. But it seems obvious to me, and perhaps to others, that your criticism of the site is more due to ideology than anything else. That's fine, but let's be clear what your point of view is. Someone who is "pro-choice" is likely to be irritated by this site. It's not comforting for a pro-choice advocate to learn from this site, for example, that more abortions mean more breast cancers. Other information may irritate other non-conservatives here for other reasons. We're not trying to make everyone feel good about their views here. We're going to tell the truth about public schools here too, and not everyone is going to be happy about that.
Conservative values have personal benefit, Aziraphale. It would benefit you and those around you whom you share them with.
Philip, the middle ground on many issues is vanishingly small or incoherent. One might claim to believe that an abortion before x weeks is moral but after x weeks is immoral, but there is no logic to that position and no one is likely to be persuaded by this "middle ground." As to gun control, it's impossible to have a conservative government with gun control. So I do wonder how anyone can be conservative yet also support gun control.--Aschlafly 16:02, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Opinion polls suggest that many people are persuaded by the middle ground on the question of abortion - mostly to do with the concept of viability. There are many conservative governments that do support gun control - an obvious example would be the government of Singapore; it is undeniably conservative and has some of the strictest gun control laws in the world.
Nice to see a civil debate, btw. Ajkgordon 16:45, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Well, if we're to be guided by polling data, then UFOs exist as evidence of life in outer space, and there are probably numerous other absurdities. In fact, polling data are often a function of how the question is asked, and realize that most people asked in a poll don't really care if their position is logical or not. I hope Aziraphale and others here don't fall into that category.
Do you think you've really found a conservative government where there is gun control? Singapore? Hmmmm. Pro-life? No, I don't think so. A free press? No, I don't think so. It is a nice city of about 5 million, but is it fair to compare it with nations of 300 million that span thousands of miles? Perhaps the better term is "city-state" rather than country.--Aschlafly 18:17, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Wonderful to see such a quality debate here - I commend all parties. ASchlafly - for another example of a conservative administration running a heavily controlled gun environment, you might consider any Tory government of the UK, a nation that is certainly not a city-state. JerryMander 19:06, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Thanks for the compliment, but I don't think the Tory government is conservative by any means. Prime Minister Brown recently delivered a speech in Boston that was extremely liberal, even to the point of praising Ted Kennedy as the greatest senator of our time. That was before Kennedy fell sick, and it's bad timing to expand on that now. But suffice it to observe that Gordon Brown would be at the far left of the American political spectrum.--Aschlafly 21:24, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Uhm, you seem to be a little less knowledgeable about UK politics than I had imagined, so I apologise for that presumptive choice of phrase. The Tory party is the British Conservative Party, not the Labour Party, of which Gordon Brown is a member and Prime Minister. Margaret Thatcher, John Major and Winston Churchill were all Tories, and all fully supported strict gun control throughout Britain. JerryMander 22:14, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Oops! I'm sooooo embarrassed! I got the party names confused.
That said, what's your point? The leftist Labour Party has completely run Britain ever since the imposition of strict gun control there. So your example reinforces my point. If John Major supported that strict gun control, he obviously made a big mistake and didn't realize the point emphasized here.--Aschlafly 22:26, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Well, actually, no - the Labour Party has not "run the country since the imposition of strict gun control". Conservatives have held government in the UK since 1900 for 47 years, the rest being divided amongst various Labour/Other parties or coalition governments. And gun laws in Britain have been very tight since the beginning of the 20th Century, with major tightening of the laws in 1903 (Tory administration), 1920 (Coalition), 1953 (Tory) and 1967 (Labour). So in fact the Conservatives have introduced more gun control legislation in the UK than Labour. Also, John Howard's very conservative government in Australia introduced considerable tightening of the gun laws. So, what's my point? It is that around the world, conservatives are indeed divided over this issue. There is usually a wide range of opinion within any group, and those who hold conservative viewpoints are no different. JerryMander 22:40, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
The "major tightening" of gun control in Britain was around 1996, and the leftists have run the country ever since. Australia acted similarly in the late 1990s with the same predictable result: a leftist takeover. If any conservatives really supported those impositions of gun control, rather than merely accepting it as unstoppable amid media hysteria, such conservatives were plainly mistaken. Need I add that conservatives in the U.S. did not make the same mistake when the same media-led push was tried here?--Aschlafly 22:55, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Hello again, Aschlafly,
"[I]t seems obvious to me, and perhaps to others, that your criticism of the site is more due to ideology than anything else"
And this is where we fall down. Which is fine and, in the end, about what I expected - you are a mature adult who has examined his beliefs and come to certain conclusions, and a few paragraphs from me aren't likely to change that. Because you continue to do me the courtesy of your full response I'll give you mine, but I realize that at this point we're explaining ourselves to each other and nothing more.
My political beliefs are unchanged and unthreatened by the fact that several senior administrators here go about their business in a belligerent fashion. I believe in limited government intrusion into private lives, and that would be true whether many keystone articles here are poorly written or not. I believe that while the 2nd amendment only expressly protects arms for military/ para-military use (while not implying a limit on them for personal use), that genie is out of the bottle and there's no point crying about it now, and I would believe all of that regardless of whether or not Conservapedia continues to take unseemly delight in the problems in our public schools. In short, my ideology has little-to-nothing to do with my criticism of Conservapedia, unless we broaden "ideology" to include "my thoughts on courtesy, coherence, discipline, organization, and reason."
Just to take the guessing and perambulating off the table, here's a mostly-verbatim recap of something I posted to an email list that several of your admins were privvy to. I say "mostly" because one of my faults is salty language and I'm editing that out, and I clarified one point that originally prompted a question. In any event, this is essentially an appendix to our discussion, which seems to be nearing its end.
Regards, Aziraphale 18:16, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
PS I know you're not a fan of the "silly" usernames, and you've given me a fair hearing. My name is John.
Aziraphale, this site is founded on disclosing one's point of view. We don't hide who we are ideologically, as Wikipedia does. Above you hint at only a few limited political views of your own, but imply that "many keystone articles here are poorly written." What I suspect, and you still won't say, is that you have ideological disagreement with keystone entries like ours on abortion and the theory of evolution.
That's fine for you to have political disagreements with us. With all due respect, it's not fine for you to present that disagreement as an objective criticism of the site, while withholding disclosure of your ideological position. You're not doing yourself any favors that way. Again, I urge you to "let go" of beliefs that you continue to carry like that.
Most of us carried liberal beliefs far longer than we wish we had. Letting them go is a bit like finding a treasure: the only regret is not finding it sooner.--Aschlafly 18:28, 20 May 2008 (EDT)

(unindent) I'm sorry, Aschlafly, apparently my link got lost in all of the above text. I've included it here again.

(I edited quickly as I was leaving work, to add the link above. I will now expand my reply.)

If you would like for me to offer a more thorough discussion of what is wrong with the keystone articles in question, I think a re-read of the arbitration I did at your behest some months ago (I believe it's in archive #30, but in any case you can find it linked above on the word "work" in my first post of this thread). Most of my comments regarding the article continue to be a problem. Just as I steadfastly reject the categorization of "liberal" on this site, I will continue to reject your assertion that I have "ideological" problems with the articles in question. I don't agree with some of the ideology presented on Conservapedia, but I have no problem with it being here. If you choose to believe that I am being deceitful, then I believe we're done here, as what point is there in a conversation like this when one person doesn't believe what the other is saying? Surely you agree that that would be a waste of time?

Regards, John

John, I read, and reread, and reread your link above about your political views. As best I can tell, you are pro-choice, in favor of legalizing same-sex marriage, and against classroom prayer. That's par for the course for someone who did well in public school, as you probably have. You don't mention evolution, but odds are you believed it just as you were taught it. You also don't mention taxpayer-funded abortion, but most "pro-choice" people support that also.
Those beliefs could result in stress, anxiety or worse. Many people who have had or support abortion aren't happy about themselves. As to evolution, it's not uplifting thinking that one is just an ape with less hair and a little more intelligence. As to group prayer, it is a great reliever of stress and anxiety for many people, and you're not benefiting from that as a classroom activity. In fact, you seem to oppose anyone benefiting from that in a learning environment in public school. Someone else could benefit from it, but apparently you oppose it and deny that benefit for everyone.
You've chosen the hard road for yourself. It could lead to medication, depression, mid-life crisis, and loneliness. Conservative girls do not have a high demand for guys who adhere to a liberal belief system. When someone would benefit from your saying, "we'll say a prayer for your father," it's not clear you'd offer that, or even allow a group prayer to be said in a classroom environment. That's not just a hypothetical: I was able to do that just recently for someone. My whole class of 40 was.--Aschlafly 21:20, 20 May 2008 (EDT)
Dear Andy,
I'm afraid we've found the space that I call the "middle ground" and you call "liberal." I am pro-choice, at the moment, only so far as I don't want the government involved in it. I still think it's wrong, and I'm glad that my church participates in an adoption network. I am in favor of legalizing civil unions, and designating marriages of all types like that in the eyes of the state. I think any religion can do whatever it wants regarding marriage; straights, gays, pets, up to them. I specifically said I was in favor of prayer at school, I just think that the pray-ers should congregate somewhere (ON school grounds is fine) rather than making the non-prayers leave. I was an arts major, didn't have to take any sort of biology, and therefore don't have any serious education in evolution (high school in southern Georgia, believe it or not, is not a bastion of liberalism, even in the public schools). Unlike some, I'm perfectly content to say "I don't know" when asked a question, and that's my answer to "what do you think about evolution." I don't see any reason why taxes should pay for abortion, but I may be missing something.
You see me as choosing a hard road, which is interesting because I see the same thing for you. When you don't acknowledge that there is space between the poles, when anyone who doesn't have your position (which is Good) must have the extreme opposite position (which is bad), you leave yourself with few choices and an incomplete understanding of issues. I know, you think I'm mired in wrong-headedness born of incomplete education, social pressure, or some other force that keeps me from seeing the light.
So, I guess in the end, we both wish each other well, both walking away with a wistful sadness that the other would be so much happier if they would just "come around."
Two things in closing (although I'll watch this for a bit in case you want to respond). First, I couldn't help but notice over the last couple of days that you pushed the focus firmly on me and my beliefs. That's fine as far as it goes as I have nothing to hide (note, for example, that I'd posted my statement of beliefs before you asked for it), but it would have been reassuring if you had offered any substantive defense against my criticism. I know, you feel that my criticism is born of my ideology. Still, it's noticed. And last, when you insinuate that I would withhold prayer from someone who requests it, when I actually do pray regularly, it's insulting. Perhaps you didn't mean it that way; perhaps you are surrounded by so much dispute, both here and in your work, that you can't help but go on the attack. Nevertheless, it was a low gesture.
I appreciate that you've taken the time to have this conversation with me.
I apologize for just getting this now, due to other commitments. I note at the outset that you seem determined to leave and end the dialog, which is a characteristic of an ideology. Conservatives continue to search for the truth; the same cannot be said of anti-conservatives.
I find your answers above less-than-clear. "Do you support taxpayer-funded abortion?" is a "yes" or "no" question. It's not a hypothetical. Over a dozen states have taxpayer-funded abortion, and the Democratic presidential candidates support it. Presumably you vote, and this isn't rocket science.
You have been clear that you oppose classroom prayer. So I don't know why you express offense when I point out the consequences of that. Often everyone in the classroom is fine with praying, as in my classes, and even if not everyone were fine with it, I don't know you would force the vast majority leave to pray rather than allow the one or two objectors to leave instead.
Your positions on these issues are going to cause you discomfort with this site as long as you hold on to them. It's taken a long time to learn what your positions are, unlike the approach taken by this site, which is to disclose the point of view first and then open the dialog. Surely you don't object to that.
Ideas have consequences. If you insist on censoring classroom prayer, then that will cause harm. Maybe you function well in an environment that censors prayer. Not everyone is as fortunate. Look at the high drop-out rate from public school; the drugs; the violence; the medication; the depression; and the stress and anxiety. It's great if you have all that under control personally. Most of the rest of us benefit from group prayer and conservative values in dealing with the inevitable challenges and hardships.--Aschlafly 09:14, 22 May 2008 (EDT)

(replying to more than one of Andy's posts)
"...the middle ground on many issues is vanishingly small...": Not at all. Both examples I gave are quite commonly held.

"...or incoherent...": Yes, I might agree with that, but that's beside the point, because we were not talking about whether positions were reasonable, but whether they were held. You could also argue that the (more extreme) liberal position is incoherent, but the point is, there are middle positions, and in some cases, they are widely held.

"'s impossible to have a conservative government with gun control.": Why? Unless you declare any government in favour of gun control to be liberal or not conservative by definition, then you've merely offered an unsubstantiated opinion.

As far as Singapore not being a country is concerned, perhaps in a sense it's not, but it is a government, which is what you were talking about. But perhaps in return I could ask if you can name one government in the last, say, 20 years, which is truly conservative?

Also, we've been over the gun control issue before, and your comments above are misleading in what they leave out. In Britain, the leftists got into power soon or straight after tightened gun control. In Australia, the conservatives were returned with an increased majority, and the leftists didn't get in for about eleven years later, and with no evidence that gun control had anything to do with it.

Philip J. Rayment 03:06, 21 May 2008 (EDT)

Philip, as our entry on gun control explains, it is the only social program that causes the increased dependency of all voters on government. Accordingly, tighter gun control results in a more dependent electorate, which results in a more liberal or leftist voting pattern. That's plain logic. Empirically, that is precisely what has happened in your country of Australia, which used to be one of the most conservative in the world. In Australia, the passage of gun control in 1996 and its expansion in 2002 has led to a complete takeover of all nine federal, state and territory legislatures by the Labor Party by 2007, the first time a single party has ever achieved this in Australian history.[7] [8] No plausible explanation other than political control has been advanced to explain why liberals push gun control but do not push for alcohol control, even though alcohol undeniably kills more people through illness, drunk driving, and violence.--Aschlafly 18:13, 22 May 2008 (EDT)
The gun control article claims that, but offers no evidence. It bases its logic partly on the idea that with introducing gun control, Australians "lost their instrument of self-defense", despite the fact that few people had guns for self-defence. So really, that argument does not hold much water. It also totally fails to explain why gun control led to an almost-immediate change of government in the UK and a much delayed one in Australia. That there was such a different outcome in the two countries shows that something else was the cause. That's plain logic.
I agree that there is an inconsistency between policies on gun control and alcohol control, but this inconsistency applies to both "liberal" and conservative governments, so is irrelevant to this discussion.
You also said above that "it's impossible to have a conservative government with gun control. So I do wonder how anyone can be conservative yet also support gun control.", yet it was the Howard government, presumably the one you describe as "one of the most conservative in the world", that introduced the gun controls. And this gets us back to one of the original points (gun control was a diversion), that it is possible for conservatives to have different opinions on some issues, and still be considered conservatives. And, as I explained above and you've not responded to, there are middle grounds, even though they may be just as unreasonable as classic "liberal" views.
Philip J. Rayment 23:31, 22 May 2008 (EDT)

(unindent) Hello yet again, Aschlafly,

You are correct that I am "trying" to leave; if I wasn't clear at the beginning, I am planning to leave, but have planned that before (and, obviously, failed) and thought that getting these things off of my chest would make this go-'round more successful. I also said that I was willing to engage in a conversation prior to leaving, and so here I am. It would be rude of me to lay my burdens at your feet and then vamoose.

Now, having recalled all of that, I have to note that your tone has been shifting from a very genuine and interactive one to more of the party-line, "conservatives search for the truth, the same cannot be said of anti-conservatives [of which you are one, John]." I believe that any impartial observer would agree that I've been answering your questions forthrightly, although clearly we still have some ground to cover. Meanwhile, you've had ample opportunity to address any of my criticisms and have chosen not to. I won't insult your intelligence by repeating them, although if you want for me to elaborate and/or clarify I'll be happy to do so.

Please, engage me here. I'm not saying you have to concede anything; if you stand behind the things I question, just explain it as I have tried to explain myself to you, and then I'll be happy to continue telling you about my own beliefs.



John, there is no "party line" and there is no "vast right-wing conspiracy" either. You can scientifically observe differences in style that result from different belief systems. Surely we can agree about that. One difference in style is that conservatives tend to continue searching for the truth, while liberals tend to cut off and sometimes even censor debate. This is observable, particularly on college campuses, and I doubt there is much genuine dispute that this occurs. The whole politically correct movement, for example, arose at the University of Wisconsin to chill open dialog.
That said, you have not addressed my basic points. I'll restate two of them. A fellow worried student has a sick parent, and you know that he would appreciate a group prayer at the beginning of class. No one is going to be offended by this, and if unexpectedly someone is, then he can leave and/or not participate. The class is not going to move to a gymnasium to say a brief prayer. Do you support saying a class prayer for this student? Would you suggest it?
The second point, which you also did not answer directly with a "yes" or "no", is just as simple: do you support or oppose taxpayer-funded abortion?
As to your points, I thought I did address them. For example, I mentioned that two were contradictory (delegate more ... delegate less). If you'd like to pick your most important two questions/criticisms, I'd be happy to try again. Godspeed.--Aschlafly 10:23, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
Good morning (at least here), Aschlafly,
I didn't mention a vast right-wing conspiracy, and I don't believe in one, so please, don't. As to a "party line" I mean it in the more colloquial sense of "you are now reverting to the "X is a liberal and therefore thinks Y" that happens here frequently, and it puts words in my mouth that do not belong there." I'm sorry for using the term in a non-standard way, as it clearly led to some confusion. I apologize.
I would have no problem with the prayer as you described it. If there was going to be a daily, scheduled prayer then I think it would be fair for the interested students to gather in a different location, which is what I was describing, but it would be incredibly over-sensitive of me to be upset about the prayer you described. Besides which, I would probably be participating in it. To your second point, no I don't support taxpayer-funded abortion. I didn't really think my original answer was too vague, but there you go. I guess my ambivalence in my original answer was because I don't even know what argument FOR tax-funded abortion there is, although you asking the question implies that there is one. I suppose all of this has the "asterix" of "in truly life-threatening situations, it could be tax-funded to the extent that any other medical procedure s tax-funded," but even there I'm no expert in medical funding so I wouldn't use me as a witness.
Thank you for being willing to revisit my original points, although in fairness I did indeed over-generalize: our discussion (including Philip Rayment) regarding the existence or not of "middle ground" conservatives speaks to some of my criticism, so you have indeed been addressing some of my concerns. I apologize for mis-characterizing you. In any case, you did in fact mention that you considered two of my points to be contradictory, but I had clarified that they weren't - you should delegate more, you are however currently delegating to poor candidates for that responsibility. So, to restate: do you actively stand behind the behavior of all of your admins/sysops, seeing no reason to re-assess and/or make changes? And, do you believe Conservapedia is best-served with you so intimately involved in the day-to-day operations, vs. selecting/grooming a CEO/CFO type that would take that over, leaving you free to a) live the life you led before Conservapedia took up so much time, and b) focus on the homeschooling aspect of the site that was your original raison d'être?
Regards, John
Reference to the "party line" is similar to implying a "vast right-wing conspiracy." I'm glad you see the absurdity to the latter, at least. But then you did not respond to my point that differences in style result from different belief systems, and these differences can be scientifically observed. Such differences plainly exist for liberals and conservatives (as with other belief systems). So again I'm left unsure what your view really is about what I said.
I specifically asked if you would suggest a classroom prayer for your classmate who has a sick parent. You didn't respond to that. Would you or not? Have you? If not, why not?
OK, you seem to oppose taxpayer-funded abortion, or at least until confronted by someone who supports it and makes what you may consider to be new arguments. Does your answer depend on who you're with at the time?
In direct and clear response (IN CAPS) to your questions, "do you actively stand behind the behavior of all of your admins/sysops, seeing no reason to re-assess and/or make changes?" ANSWER: NO. I AM CONSTANTLY RE-ASSESSING AND MAKING CHANGES, AND HAVE (RELUCTANTLY) REVOKED SYSOP PRIVILEGES ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS. I WELCOME SUGGESTIONS. Second question, "do you believe Conservapedia is best-served with you so intimately involved in the day-to-day operations, vs. selecting/grooming a CEO/CFO type that would take that over, leaving you free to a) live the life you led before Conservapedia took up so much time, and b) focus on the homeschooling aspect of the site that was your original raison d'être?" ANSWER: I PERSONALLY BENEFIT FROM MY TIME HERE, AND WILL CONTINUE TO DO SO. BY READING AND EXPLAINING, I LEARN AND GROW. ALTERNATE EXPENDITURES OF MY TIME ARE OFTEN NOT AS PRODUCTIVE. WE'RE A MERITOCRACY AND THE MOST PRODUCTIVE PEOPLE ARE IN CHARGE, AND THAT IS NOT ALWAYS ME ON A GIVEN DAY. I WELCOME THE FRIENDLY COMPETITION AND WHOEVER IS MOST PRODUCTIVE WILL BE IN CHARGE.--Aschlafly 12:10, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
Dear Andy,
I didn't respond to your point about scientific observation of style differences a) because I didn't see that it was phrased to illicit a response, and b) I have no experience on the subject of scientific observation of style differences. Ah. I just reread it, and you did indeed say "Surely we can agree on that." I'm not sure that I agree, or at least whole-heartedly. I think ideology can influence a person's communication style, but I suspect that style is far more profoundly affected by, say, education, home life, native culture, and (perhaps less so) region of the country and age of the speaker. So *very* broadly I agree, but I don't know that we agree on the severity of the issue. I would not say that I could score 10/10 reading samples of text that has nothing to do with politics and still accurately guess how each writer voted, for example.
Would I "suggest" the prayer? That's incredibly hypothetical, and I'm professionally against giving firm answers to hypotheticals; surely as a lawyer you understand. I have certainly suggested prayers in the past, but there are other times when I haven't, probably because I didn't think of it. I'm curious just how fine you want to split this hair in order to find some limit to my prayer-advocacy. I pray, I have no problem with others praying, even in school as I've explained.
re: tax-funded abortion - I don't know how else to say this. I'm against it, now that I've been asked about it. I haven't given it that much thought. Abortion has not touched my immediate or extended family, nor any friends of mine that I know of. If that makes me shallow, well, we all have our crosses to bear.
By the by, to help clarify the "party line" I was referring to before: why do you see fit to add the line "Does your answer depend on who you're with at the time?" Does that not register as insulting to you when yout type it? Because to me it sounds very rude and aggressive. I know Conservapedia does not care for personal remarks, and I'm not trying to start a fight; rather, I'm trying to find out why you find that language acceptable.
Your answers to my questions are appreciated. The second is answered as well as it will be, so I'll leave it be. As to the first - I am prepared to give you very specific suggestions, but I'm requesting permission to do so for the following reason: if I post it here it will appear very much like the sort of thing that has been stricken from other pages for being abusive. I feel comfortable that I've proven I can speak politely, but going over the foibles of a half-dozen senior editors here won't help but look negative. So long as you're ok with this, I'm happy to continue.
Regards, John
I answered your questions, but you didn't answer mine, particularly the one I asked twice: "I specifically asked if you would suggest a classroom prayer for your classmate who has a sick parent. You didn't respond to that. Would you or not? Have you? If not, why not?"
That is not a hypothetical. Last week the situation presented itself to me, and I'm sure you've encountered a classmate having a sick parent who would have appreciated a classroom prayer.
There are others here who are willing to engage in dialog, which means answering questions to advance the discussion. I'm going to address them and other tasks on this site first, because it's not productive for me to answer your questions while you do not answer mine. Godspeed.--Aschlafly 14:23, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
Dear Andy,
I'm 36. It has been approximately 14 years since I was in a classroom for any significant period of time. When I was 22 (the last time I was in school) I'm not sure that I would have felt comfortable offering a prayer unasked; I simply wasn't that comfortable with matters of faith. Now, I'm a different person, but I'm not in any sort of class. So, to me it is hypothetical.
What is curious to me is why this entire conversation now boils down to "Would John be the one to suggest that a prayer be offered in a classroom for the sick parent of a student?" I pray. I'm fine with prayer in school. I've even said that I'm fine with a prayer in a classroom in this exact situation that you've described. However, I am honest enough to admit that if I were to give you a "yes" or "no" answer, in the definitive, to this question then there's a good chance I'd be lying because I'm not certain of the truth. That, to you, constitutes a poor answer?
Regards, John
John, so what if you're 36? I'm older than you, and this just happened to me last week. No kidding, even people at the ripe old age of 36 can find themselves in classrooms from time to time, either as a student or a teacher.
I answered your questions; why won't you answer mine? Is it really that hard to admit that one should suggest that the class say a prayer together for a troubled classmate, and that you'd try to do that?--Aschlafly 18:04, 23 May 2008 (EDT)

(unindent)Hello Aschlafly,

Me being 36 was simply the first piece of information in a series of pieces of information that were meant to inform you, together, that the situation you put before me is hypothetical. Now, since you have re-phrased the question from "would I suggest" to "one should suggest", I can happily agree with you that one should suggest it. I think prayer is a positive thing and there's no reason not to offer it.

I'm sorry if you feel I'm splitting hairs, but I'm being as forthright as I can with you. You asked if I would; I didn't know the answer. Now you ask if I should, and the answer, for me, is yes. May we now get back to Conservapedia and, in particular, if you want me to publicly explain which of your senior admins are incompetent and why?

Regards, John

John, I'm not impressed by your answers. Apparently you would not suggest a classroom prayer for a classmate who has a sick parent. I conclude that you might even support censorship of such classroom prayer. I also consider your answers to this simple question as being evasive and less-than-forthright.
If and when you have a change of heart, I'd like to hear more. Otherwise, I've heard enough. Don't start from your current frame of mind and call any admins "incompetent" here. Instead, I urge you to focus on why you're reluctant to suggest a classroom prayer for a classmate in need.--Aschlafly 23:27, 23 May 2008 (EDT)
Dear Andy,
Apparently, despite my best efforts, you've slid back to form, either reading only part of my answers or willfully ignoring parts of them in order to score your normal points. Since we're done with the pleasantries (and again, an impartial reader would conclude that I've been incredibly tolerant of your repeated jibes), please rest assured that you not being impressed with my answers is no surprise [removed insult]. You're interested alright, but you clearly have no idea what's going on.
I do want to thank you, though - this conversation has achieved exactly what I wanted it to do at the outset, albeit not at all in the way I thought it would. "Every plan lasts until the first arrow flies," as they say.
Cheers, Aziraphale 00:41, 24 May 2008 (EDT)
"I conclude that you might even support censorship of such classroom prayer.": I think he's made it quite clear that he would support such classroom prayer ("I can happily agree with you that one should suggest it. I think prayer is a positive thing and there's no reason not to offer it."). Further, his answers to this question have been quite clear and well-explained. And the question was hypothetical for him as he is not in a classroom, and has no classmates. You are in a classroom as a teacher, but presumably he is not, so he is not in the situation to suggest such a prayer. Philip J. Rayment 05:36, 24 May 2008 (EDT)
No, Philip, I'm afraid you've been taken by an argumentative trick, which can also been seen in American politics, as in a candidate declaring that "Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided (but the candidate does not personally support overturning it)." Despite my repeatedly asking him, Aziraphale would only allow that someone else should suggest a classroom prayer for a person in need, which leaves Aziraphale free to oppose such prayer.
In response to Aziraphale himself, Conservapedia does not stoop to the low level of Parthian shots and personal insults. We welcome your edits and, if and when you become willing to suggest a classroom prayer for a student in need, then I'd welcome your further comments from that frame of mind. Godspeed.--Aschlafly 08:41, 24 May 2008 (EDT)
But he specifically said that one "should" suggest it, that "there's no reason not to offer it", and that he's "fine with a prayer in a classroom in this exact situation that you've described". That's not the same as not overturning something you supposedly disagree with, and his comments leave no room for you supposing that he is free to oppose such prayer. Philip J. Rayment 10:50, 24 May 2008 (EDT)
I think Philip is right. He's said absolutely nothing to indicate he would oppose or censor such a prayer. As a comparison , if you were to ask me if I would oppose working in a soup kitchen on Thanksgiving, I would reply that I think people should, and I would certainly never oppose it, but, honestly, I never have, and I sort of doubt this year will be an exception, so I'm not prepared to say I will do so. Would you assume from that that I oppose working in soup kitchens, and would try to prevent people from doing so? That's basically the same attitude Aziraphile offered in the example you proposed. Jaguar 11:58, 24 May 2008 (EDT)
Philip, your quote is incomplete and omits how Aziraphale was merely referring back to what he said previously. Note that "a prayer" could mean merely a silent prayer by one person. Jaguar, my conclusion that Aziraphale would not himself suggest a classroom prayer for someone in need is enough for me.
Some liberals seem to like it when others waste time trying to figure out their positions, rather than simply and clearly stating their views. I'm moving on. Attempts at last wordism on someone else's talk page are disfavored.--Aschlafly 13:23, 24 May 2008 (EDT)