Open Thread

Open Thread #8

The Open Thread is a forum for readers of my blog. It is an opportunity to leave comments and start discussions that do not fit under an existing post or which would derail ongoing debates.

A new Open Thread will be posted whenever it seems suitable. There is no fixed time interval and no set number of posts.

Every Open Thread is easily accessible via the “Open Thread” category on this blog.

49 thoughts on “Open Thread #8

    1. Damn, that’s quite a difference. At least the zoomers got muh graphics and realism.

      It was also a very major complaint of REmake 2 that the soundtrack was generally much weaker (there is a true banger during Leon’s escape sequence actually), and that the OG soundtrack was hidden behind a paywall.

      Did you by chance catch that final Zelda trailer? I thought it looked pretty nuts.

      1. I think the new Link aesthetic with the tattoos, long hair and Greco-Roman sort of attire looks pretty cool. I’m not sure I see much of a difference in his character model other than that, but I can definitely go into the menu and undress him in both versions for comparison screenshots. He’s still a manlet, though, and even a bit shorter than Zelda.

  1. My initial impressions of Resident Evil 7 are pretty good. The graphics are pretty great and there is a genuine feeling of suspense. I do not like that the violence is completely over the top, with the protagonist taking a knife through his hand or even getting his hand chopped off, running around with the bleeding stump, only to reattach it with the help of some magic potion soon afterwards. Supposedly this is intended to be comical. I also dislike that this franchise went from a pseudo-scientific explanation for the existence of the zombies, i.e. the Pfizer-inspired Umbrella Corporation conducting biochemical experiments, to a supernatural setting where little seems to make any sense.

    1. It’s not like an RE title to be set in a supernatural setting without an explanation for what is happening. That’s more of a Silent Hill thing to do, except even then everything can be boiled down to the psychological and the protagonist’s individual perception.

  2. Sergei Lavrov explains the tragedy in Ukraine:

    His English is impressive. It has long been a very long time since an American president can deliver an eloquent and moving speech. Lincoln, perhaps, was the last man.

    Oh lord! If an American president could speak Russian.

    1. The inability of our leaders to speak eloquently further corroborates the hypothesis of widespread cognitive decline among the elites. There was a video making the rounds in which Obama’s teleprompter failed and he looked like a total idiot trying to speak freely.

      Putin speaks pretty decent German, by the way. In contrast, plenty of German politicians have a hard enough time with their mother tongue. A prime example is the current Minster of Foreign Affairs, Annalena Baerbock, who is getting ridiculed far and wide.

      1. Well, at least if they couldn’t elevate themselves to the level of Lincoln, perhaps just speak like Trump, for example.

        In general, yeah I see your point now.

        But if we use language proficiency as a litmus test for intelligence of those teeth-whitening presidents, then we might conclude that Chinese leaders are…well…not quite smart. The opposite should be true, however.

        Of course, this question can be answered partially by the wide difference in grammatical structure between Chinese language and Western ones. But there are more Chinese who could speak reasonably well English after coming back home from the US or the UK. In terms of articulating in mother-tongue, Chinese leaders also do not show a high degree of eloquence and creativity as well.

      2. Chinese leaders also do not show a high degree of eloquence and creativity as well.

        Either, sorry. That’s a sign that English is not my mother-tongue.

      3. I wonder if we can apply the same standards to the Chinese as the brains of East Asians are structured differently. I recently came across research pointing out that there seems to be a connection between the complexity of the grammar of one’s mother tongue and the development of certain brain areas. Chinese has a fairly simple grammar, yet an extremely high number of characters. Of course, there is the question of correlation and causation, but the claim that the Chinese are a bit more “autistic” than Westerners does not seem far-fetched, which would imply a different style of communication. However, there are other aspects in which the Chinese can show mastery of the language, for instance with puns.

      4. Do you remember the research? I would like to read more on that.

        Well, here’s something you can consult with your wife:

        Mandarin has a very restricted phonemic inventory, no consonant clusters and very limited number of consonants at the end of a syllable (or a word). Off the top of my head, I can only think of /ŋ/, /n/, /m/. This means Chinese who try to speak English will undoubtedly face the tremendous tasks of approximating those nasty consonants such as /θ/ and consonant clusters.

        Adding to this complexity is the tones and English stress patterns. I have not seen any research on the interaction between Chinese tones and English stress pattern, but most Chinese have problems of articulating correctly English stress.

        Adding even more to this complexity is prosody in a sentence. Currently, there aren’t that many books or researches on connected speech, let alone a comparative research on Chinese and English connected speech. I have noticed that since Chinese is a highly syllabic language, Chinese speakers (apart from Beijing region) usually articulate quite clearly each word. Of course, you will face fast speakers all the time too, but in general, they tend to speak more clearly than an English or a Spanish speaker.

        So there, the outline of phonological challenge most Chinese will face.

        Now onto the polished speech. I think there are two factors in play here:

        1) The political system of China promotes a highly bureaucratic language that is austere in expressivity.

        2) China does not have a public speaking tradition similar to the West, which is rooted in the Greek and Roman tradition.

        So those two factors are at play.

      5. I think that the system in the US is not ossified enough yet to completely exclude intelligent outsiders. Corruption is wide-reaching, though, and there surely are a lot of top bureaucrats who got their position not based on merit. I could think of quite a few who seem wholly unqualified.

      6. I came across this research on language differences and how they may affect brain development on a blog that is suppressed in Google search and it seems too niche for Yandex to pick it up. I did come across a similar paper, though, that compares Hebrew and English, and their effect on the brain:

        Thank you for that!
        I have downloaded it. Very interesting.

        Any chance that we are using Hebrew to mock me because my position on the Holocaust? 🙂

      7. Ok, sorry. Haha 🙂
        Very interesting.
        If you come across something else of the same vein, please alert me.

        Would be welcome!

      8. I came across this research on language differences and how they may affect brain development on a blog that is suppressed in Google search

        Hey can you share this blog with me?
        Literally anything relates to languages interest me nowadays.


        Comey decided to play fast and loose with the regulations of the FBI.

        Hoover’s FBI covertly intervened in the presidential elections of 1948 (seeking to sabotage Henry Wallace’s campaign), 1952 (smearing Democratic candidate Adlai Stevenson as gay), and 1964 (spying on the campaign of Republican nominee Barry Goldwater).

        This part is spine-chilling.

    2. I just finished listening to this interview, and thought that it was excellent. I like Lavrov’s demeanor, coolly pointing to the West’s hypocrisy. The moderator who plays the West’s lapdog does not look good at all. At multiple times he got schooled by Lavrov so hard that he did not have to say anything in return.

      1. I think he explains very well the position of Russia.

        I know this is really crazy. But sometimes I think of a world where the great three could sit down and make the world better, in true spirit of co-orditnation.

        US will send top-notched medical experts to China in order to advise them on improving their healthcare system.

        US will send a delegate of highly trained engineering experts to Russia in order to help them to inspect and fix gas and electricity during the unhumanly cold winter.

        Wouldn’t it be better that way? Acknowledging each other’s sphere of influence and work together on defusing war fuses.

        Like building a lasting peace in the spirit of the Vienna Conference in 1814-1815.

        Wouldn’t it be better for everyone?

      2. This would be better. I wish we could find out who is behind all these wars.

        I know who you are implying. But they are not monolithic as a mass. In fact, I don’t even know their social configuration.

        In the US, the military industry, the banking industry, the oil business. They all benefit tremendously from war.

      3. I wonder if Russia would accept the fact that Ukraine would join the EU instead of the NATO. This is supposed to be an economic relationship with the rest of Europe.

  3. One of the thing I have noticed about American politicians is that there is a clear lack of foresight. This includes the Vietnam War generation. American policy makers seem to aim for a quick fix, a sort of patched-up policy, or a kind of solution that solves problems immediately, but could potentially opening up more problems in the future.

    Take for example, the Sino-US normalisation during Henry Kissinger’s time. It is a work of opportunists. Of course, I couldn’t blame the US politicians for not seeing the collapse of Communism. But such a policy was quite dangerous. You now make friends to an enemy with hostile ideology. And though they might help to bring the USSR and China against each other (they would fight each other without a normalisation anyway), they also freed up a very dangerous giant. It also highlighted the treachery of the US. She abandoned Taiwan for China, and, according to wiki:

    he US reiterated the Shanghai Communiqué’s acknowledgment of the Chinese position that there is only one China and that Taiwan is a part of China; Beijing acknowledged that the American people would continue to carry on commercial, cultural, and other unofficial contacts with the people of Taiwan.


    When I think of a politician with powerful foresight, I think of Bismarck.

    1. Most Vietnamese nowadays think of the US as a “whore”, because she has no loyalty to anybody, BTW.

  4. I have booked a consultation with you. Since I have canceled once, I promise not to do so this time. Would be happy to receive your advices on dating.

    As I have professed myself here and there, I am not interested in casual sex, so I am very keen on hearing you advising me on traits of stable and wife-worthy women. I am also very interested in knowing what are the usual irritating traits of women aside from promiscuity.

    40 minutes is not long so I will prepare some questions on these topics.

    Thank you for your service.

      1. Is there a chance we’re going to see your book about relationships in the near future,Aaron?

        I suspect I’m gonna have disagreements based on the fact that we probably have a very different fundamental view on certain things in life (Your past self and I seem much closer in worldview to be honest..),but nonetheless,your input regarding the whole topic in general is definitely worth hearing.

        There was a post of yours in your other blog that was really eye opening. Its about a testing whether a woman is relationship material by seeing how much she actually respects your money and time. A chick you just met who expects (or worse; demands) an expensive fancy dinner from you not only shows a lack of consideration,but a lot of entitlement. I’ll have to read it again when your blog comes back up. I’ll be sure to make use of it.

      2. This book project is in limbo, but I have published some content for it on my other blog over the years. The big issue I have with this book is that I do not think that most men are better off in a relationship.

        On which issues do you fundamentally disagree with me?

      3. It is certainly useful to keep many perspectives and points of view in mind.

        I will take note of you guys’ complaint about my “contrarianism” and tone it down, just to forge a better relationship here.

      4. I’m…a little hesitant to judge a woman’s character based on number of partners alone. I believe you were of the same view in the past,being sex positive.

        I’m not saying one should seriously date or commit (you probably might want to hesitate fucking her too if you’re worried about STD’s) to a woman who has been with the entire neighborhood. That’s an obvious extreme. But a woman who has had sex a few times outside a relationship (without becoming a single mother. obviously,she’s definitely off the radar if that’s the case) I feel is not necessarily an indicator of bad character. A woman cheating on a serious boyfriend though? That is a more egregious indicator if you ask me.

        But you’ve probably had even more experiences ever since writing Minimal Game and Sleazy Stories 1,so maybe you’ve noticed a pattern among such women to justify the change in view.

        I think there’s likely a few more things we don’t agree on,but its probably best to talk about them on another time.

      5. I certainly changed my mind on that particular issue, but for good reason. Once you start to seriously think about having children, your attitude towards a woman’s past may also become a bit less forgiving.


      William J. Burns speak quite well. Of course, those “raising a concern” are appearing here and there. Marks of our time, I guess.

      So yeah, what one of things that “raise concern” (again!) about those “Pentagon” papers are that they look like they are drawn for CIA agents of 3 generations after our time. CIA agents of our time are highly educated so I am not sure why they need those charts alone to understand the world problem, as well as the Ukraine conflict.

      1. Sure, he may be well-spoken but he is still lying through his teeth, making up nonsense about the impending collapse of Russia. Meanwhile, their boy Zelensky is getting pummeled left and right on the battle field. On a related note, mainstream coverage seems to be shifting. Today, for instance, the German mainstream news site I skim daily to stay in touch with state-prescribed normie thinking has had barely any coverage of the war in the Ukraine. You have to scroll down several pages to come across one single story.

      2. Yeah, I understand. I don’t expect CIA agents to tell the truth.

        One of the features of those leaked documents is that they are revealing information that may hurt the US and its allies’ interests. And that should blow off my hypothesis about the possibility of forging such a document.

        Another problem with my method and hypothesis is that the classification of these newly leaked documents are different from those declassified papers we have during the Vietnam War, or during the 1990 decade. So they are perhaps used within the army staffs, and not directed at the CIA agents.

        Seriously, if the leaked documents are of the same nature as those declassified files, the consequence would be even more disastrous for America, and for the image of the CIA among the intelligence world.

      3. 16:35 of that video.

        We are an apolitical organisation.

        I have read many books about intelligence agencies around the world. And this statement stands in contrast to ANYTHING an intelligence agency stands for.

        Smooth talker though.

  5. I should point out this. Maybe the press has not picked up on it.

    But I distinctively remember that, back in 2022, when the Ukraine tragedy enters its first scene, that the Russian army was actually quite light-handed. They directed artillery fires or rocket fires at selective positions and gave Ukrainians ample opportunities to surrender. As the tragedy enters deeper into madness, the destruction intensified.

    So things were getting more and more bloody as the conflict goes on.

    Not intend to say that Ukrainians should surrender. After all, this is their land, this is their blood.

  6. If what happened last time was an election fraud.

    I am, really am, expecting a new election fraud in 2024.


    Let’s print more money, the more, the merrier.

    The printing money industry of the US, hailed directly from Benjamin Franklin, honourably presents to you, 842 billion dollars printed freshly anew.

    Of course, we spend on ourselves, the rest of world will share its liability.

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