Wikipedia:Fringe theories/Noticeboard

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AAH again

I know the section for this is still open above, but I'd like to re-highlight Aquatic ape hypothesis (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views).

Currently the editors of the article include jps (talk) going against User:MjolnirPants (who is a self-admitted advocate, albeit relatively well-behaved), as well as three pro-fringe POV-warriors, one of which just expressed willingness to edit war over the article. (talk) 22:10, 7 March 2017 (UTC)

"Relatively" meaning "MjolnirPants thinks this hypothesis has gotten a bad rap, but still wants to see it documented like every other fringe theory and has been working as hard at that as any other anti-fringe editor at that page for the past week". But I appreciate the aspersions.
Seriously though, more skeptical eyes on the article are always welcome. The article got re-written into a pro-AAH fluff piece over the course of several months, and while the most uncivil proponent has been sanctioned out of participation there, there are still editors who resist any attempt to bring it into line. Currently, there's a loose consensus that primary sources are okay in the section outlining the theory, but me and jps are of the opinion that the section is entirely too long and detailed. There's another loose consensus that the article is still a little too promotional, as well. There's an ongoing debate about what sorts of images are appropriate that I really think could use some outside opinions. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 22:33, 7 March 2017 (UTC)
It's funny to see (whoever this unnamed user is) labelling a relatively neutral editor as "advocate"...
I think it's fair to treat the AAH article as a combination of two intermingled entities, one being the original Aquatic Ape by Hardy/Morgan which is still largely rejected and ignored by scientists, another being the recent reformulated the Waterside model(s), which have been slowly entering mainstream scientific discussions for some years. The issue is such paradoxical that while a large part of the article is rightfully dedicated to explain how fringe the topic is, there exists a whole "efforts" section showing the recent developments and the hard evidence obtained.
I'd say that the "anti-fringe" or more neutral editors usually focus on the rejection, and the so called "pro-fringe" are more willing to show the scientific aspects. Due the abovementioned dual nature (AAH being marginally pseudoscience and legit science at the same time) we must pay extra care when assessing the article as too promotional or too conservative.
As an example, many of the critics in Langdon 1997 have now become invalid or been refuted by later publications like Bender et al., this antiqued review is still prominently cited in the article. Or as a few editors pointed out, some portion of the article may be too relying on primary sources. The balance of due weight should be adjusted from both sides. Chakazul (talk) 04:06, 8 March 2017 (UTC)
I unwatched the article when it went from "utterly shit" to "somewhat shit". Like many fringe articles on topics with an entrenched fanbase I suspect that's the best Wikipedia will ever achieve. In my view all the primaries should go. On other fringe topics (e.g. stuff around Rudolf Steiner) ISTR arbcom ruled no primary source should be used for statements about the "fringe theory" and expert secondaries should be used instead. This is general good practice anyway, and I think should be applied to AAH - but too many editors are in love with making Wikipedia a secondary source I think. Alexbrn (talk) 08:51, 8 March 2017 (UTC)
It is indeed peculiar that the proponents want to cite chapter and verse from articles that are of oblique importance to describing "AAH". Meanwhile we have an article which meanders about in its description and never makes any substantive claims. This is how the scientifically-minded supporters of AAH would have it (and I've seen this kind of fringe promotional behavior before). The idea is that if you are vague and never directly make any claims about what should be discovered you can putter your hypothesis along until forever without the need to worry about falsification. The people claiming that anthropology will somehow incorporate the legitimate aspects (what those aspects are specifically can never be identified) into the mainstream have yet to explain how these are at all related to AAH as an idea. The "pseudoscientific" AAH is at least possible to follow. The "scientific" version is whatever you want it to be, apparently. Perfectly impossible to write a WP article on that. jps (talk) 10:45, 8 March 2017 (UTC)
  • @Chakazul:As an example, many of the critics in Langdon 1997 have now become invalid or been refuted by later publications like Bender et al., this antiqued review is still prominently cited in the article. As far as I know, Langdon published the only comprehensive review of the theory. Regardless of the merits, or lack thereof, of his critiques, his review is a prominent feature of the subject and deserves significant weight.
  • @9SGjOSfyHJaQVsEmy9NS:Meanwhile we have an article which meanders about in its description and never makes any substantive claims. I think focusing on cleaning up the Efforts made to test hypotheses section will correct that. As things sit, that section doesn't even address the heading, but instead documents attempts by the handful of proponents of this hypothesis to argue for it. I'm of the opinion that the entire section needs to go, though if we trim it down and point out some of the evidence that's been cited in the RSes as not supporting the AAH, that might make the section workable. I've already trimmed down the section describing the hypothesis, so that it is just a list of specific claims. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 16:38, 8 March 2017 (UTC)
It's not clear to me which "legitimate aspects" are being referred to here. The hypothesis is fundamentally flawed, because you would have to explain why those hominid characteristics that supposedly evolved in response to an aquatic environment persisted after the hominids left the aquatic environment. And if you could do that, you'd be demonstrating that they would have evolved anyway -- so why postulate an aquatic interlude in the first place? Mainstream anthropology is never going to "incorporate" any "legitimate aspects" -- there are none to incorporate. DoctorJoeE review transgressions/talk to me! 20:23, 8 March 2017 (UTC)
I can't speak for others, but the only "legitimate aspects" I am aware of is the fact that a small number of anthropologists have posited hypotheses functionally similar (or even identical) to arguments used by Morgan and Hardy (the two primary originators of the hypothesis). ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 20:44, 8 March 2017 (UTC)
Perhaps I missed it, but I don't see any examples of that in the article. I'm aware that a few academic anthropologists have written about the possible effects of water on human evolution, if that's what you mean -- but they are always very careful to distance themselves from any association with the AAT. AAT is one of those theories that sounds kind of plausible, until you take Anthropology 101 and realize that it makes no sense. (As I'm sure you know, Hardy was a marine biologist, and Morgan has no formal scientific training at all.) DoctorJoeE review transgressions/talk to me! 02:39, 9 March 2017 (UTC)
The "legitimate aspects" I spoke of is a loose collection of scientific works, mostly outside anthropology. They may have no relation to AAH in the beginning, for example there's some 20 years worth of acadmic literature on human's need of DHA, iodine etc, published in major journals in nutritional science without a single mention of Hardy or Morgan. After the researchers found their body of works scientifically sound and well received, or happened to notice a similarity between their results and something in AAH, they may choose to acknowledge Hardy/Morgan's thesis as an equivalent or a foundation of their work, and explicitly do so in published RS. These criteria -- solid research + explicit reference -- are mandatory in considerations here. In contrast, some may say the Coastal Migration Theory supports AAH, but since no one ever claimed a linkage, it should not be included.
These legitimate aspects include (counting as many as I know): modern diving physiology and behavior (Schagatay et al.), bipedalism (Niemitz), aquatic nutrition (Cunnane, Crowford et al.), aquatic resources exploitation (Steward, Joordens, Erlandson, etc), water birth (Odent), and a few phenomena like vernix caseosa and auditory exostosis.
I notice that virtually no criticism of AAH mentioned these aspects. Whether they chose to ignore them for some reason or tacitly admitted that they are genuine and solid (thus nothing to criticize) I couldn't know. But a consequence is that they are largely unknown to the general public and the anthropological circle, despite their importance in testing or even supporting the AAH. I think it's fair to give them due weight in the AAH article, especially after Attenborough's extensive review last year. Chakazul (talk) 04:06, 9 March 2017 (UTC)
This is exactly the kind of argument I'm referring to above. The nutrition argument is a really strange one because the obvious question is what aspects in particular are AAH-related? I don't think any of the WP:MAINSTREAM nutrition articles are making claims about specific evolutionary pressure coming from aquatic pasts, but I have seen some WP:FRINGE nutrition articles make that claim (in a "evolutionary fetishization" fashion that is much maligned in academia -- compare evolutionary psychology). The references you include are to a lot of AAH proponents, but the works are so vague and poorly cited as to not really serve the purpose being claimed. Some of the claims (e.g. those associated with water birth) are themselves fringe, so we're really running down blind alleys chasing ideas outside the academic mainstream here). To claim that these ideas are not fringe seems to be the game, but in spite of the publications (some of which are in poorly vetted journals, I might add), there is no real WP:FRIND evaluative work to point to other than dismissal. The best we can do is find criticisms of the entire field using the point that AAH is no worse than the "standard explanations". But this doesn't inoculate AAH from the criticisms that are leveled against it, even though it is unfair that similar criticisms haven't been leveled against other equally problematic arguments. jps (talk) 15:42, 9 March 2017 (UTC)
If you think the nutrition argument is fringe, you may wish to refer to special issues in Journal of Human Evolution[1] and Quaternary International[2] dedicated to this topic. I hope you're not accusing them as fringe journals promoting "evolutionary fetishization". As said above, the idea of freshwater/marine diet as a driving force is based on a long tradition of solid research published in peer-reviewed journals. We know the mainstream is land-based meat eating, yet aquatic diet is a major topic in human evolution and archaeology, not marginalized small talk.
Indeed the water birth argument is the weakest among the "legitimate aspects", so it's aptly excluded from the article. The practice of water birth is itself controversial within medical science, nonetheless the recent large scale reviews showed that it is at least safe and beneficial to mothers and encouraged more investigations in this phenomenon.
These aspects, as legitimate as they may be, will not have much coverage in general topic articles per WP:ONEWAY, but I argue they are rightly represented in the current AAH article wrt their notability and relevance. Chakazul (talk) 04:11, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
Again, I think you are finding favor with speculation that is obviously evolution fetishization. That humans require certain nutrients that are abundant in seafood does not mean that humans evolved as sea-dependent beings. In fact, it's obvious that causation could be exactly backwards! If you want these topics represented in AAH (and right now, we're staring down the barrel of a gun that is about to gut a lot of this per WP:OR, you're going to need to find a good analysis that connects these ideas to AAH. I'm not finding much in the way of that in either the text itself, the sources you are identifying, or much more. In short, it looks like the pseudoscience is more notable than this accommodationist stance. jps (talk) 13:31, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
@DoctorJoeE: I had removed some references to the exact phenomenon you described not too long after making that comment, because the article presented them as "testing" the AAH, and all they did was review evidence and propose hypotheses. But yes, your description of what other anthropologists have done is highly accurate. The notion that humans spent hundreds of thousands of years (the minimum time necessary for the pressures of natural selection to make an impact) living almost exclusively on the coasts and spending much of their time in the water is very much at odds with the available evidence. Not to mention the fact that in the hundreds of thousands of years since, we haven't lost any of those traits as you previously pointed out. (Note that I consider myself a "pro-AAH type with strong skeptical principles" because I think those anthropologists who have proposed similar hypotheses with smaller scopes might be on to something, not because I believe the AAH is whole Truth.) ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 14:22, 9 March 2017 (UTC)
Fair enough -- it's also probably worth noting the total absence (at least to date) of any sort of supporting physical evidence in the fossil record. And as an aside, I can't think of a single case where an entire body of scientific research has been shown to be fundamentally wrong by people who lack expertise in that field. Not that it couldn't happen, of course -- but to my knowledge it never has.DoctorJoeE review transgressions/talk to me! 19:09, 9 March 2017 (UTC)
I think I've explained ad nauseam that there're now ample archaeological and genetic evidence of almost exclusive coastal subsistence in human past, not in the Miocene that Hardy/Morgan have guessed (they're wrong in the timeline!), but in the Pleistocene-Holocene South African and Indo-Pacific coastlines, which is compatible with the Waterside model about coastal diet. Why still repeating "the total absence of evidence" is beyond my grasp... Chakazul (talk) 04:53, 10 March 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────The existence of a human settlements that ate seafood along the coast is hardly evidence of "almost exclusive coastal subsistence". It's unclear to me how you can make that claim with a straight face. jps (talk) 11:18, 10 March 2017 (UTC)

It's more than just existence of coastal settlements, but

Everyone alive today is descended from a group of people from a single region who survived this catastrophe. The southern coast of Africa would have been one of the few spots where humans could survive during this climate crisis because it harbors an abundance of shellfish and edible plants. -- Curtis Marean[3]

Also, one version of the coastal migration theory is that

mitochondrial DNA variation in isolated "relict" populations in southeast Asia supports the view that there was only a single dispersal from Africa, most likely via a southern coastal route, through India and onward into southeast Asia and Australasia. -- Vincent Macaulay et al.

That's how some scientists (not necessary pro-AAH) proposed an "almost exclusive coastal subsistence" in early Homo sapiens. Chakazul (talk) 12:47, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
That's pretty far-afield from the AAH claims of persistent adaptationist proposals (which, if I understand AAH correctly, is the meat of the point). If people evacuate through the coast, that does not mean that they developed at the coast. And the fact that this particular migration theory is only one possibility reminds me of the "coherent catastrophism" claims of certain neo-Velikovskians who proposed that comets colliding with Earth at the KT extinction event were somehow confirmations of their ideas. jps (talk) 13:15, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
But this is nothing like the obvious pseudoscience of Velikovsky. I'm no biologist (neither are you, jps) but this is also a topic in the history and the sociology of science. Clearly there are versions of this hypothesis that are not within the scientific mainstream, and we need to make that clear, which the article already does, to my reading. But there is also a less visible and more recent strand, in perfectly mainstream biology, that does not necessarily address the issue directly, and certainly does not vindicate all the claims made by the original proponents, but is rather more sympathetic. There has to be room for speculation in research into the origins of humans. One thing that distinguishes this hypothesis from most of the pseudoscience we have to deal with is that it doesn't have to be an either/or. Hominids obviously had to be near some water sometimes - how near how much water for how long can be a matter for empirical research. Itsmejudith (talk) 16:08, 10 March 2017 (UTC)
That's kinda my point, Itsmejudith. Check out the Clube and Napier stuff for the phenomenon I'm describing vis-a-vis Velikovsky (you won't find a Wikipedia article on coherent catastrophism for the same reason you won't find an article on rehabilitated AAH). The story is that you have a rejected hypothesis for decades. Some people who are vaguely supportive of it find common-cause with others who come at certain ideas from other angles. Rinse. Repeat. The issue really is that the pseudoscience is hard to sift out. This isn't all the AAH-proponents' fault. There is a lot of just-so stories that float around as Daniel Dennett points out. AAH is really no better nor worse than them, but it is unmistakeable that there are "evidence" claims that are just bogus. Sadly, those claims tend to get a lot of the WP:FRIND coverage. jps (talk) 01:08, 11 March 2017 (UTC)
Whether the recent coastal settlements & migration theories could become "evidence" for AAH remains to be seen. Adherents tend to be optimistic and critics tend to be skeptic, but the truth is simply, we don't know. A paleo human living near the coastline could be avoiding water altogether or dipping in the sea whole day. One thing for sure is, if we judge the usefulness and probability of an evolutionary scenario by the current mainstream models of paleo-environments -- e.g. mosaic habitat (including water elements) for early hominins, coastal habitat for early Homo sapiens -- parts of the AAH have been upgraded from 0% worthiness to becoming vibrant research topics. From the standpoint of WP, this article is more like recording science in progress than describing a dead archaic theory. Chakazul (talk) 03:33, 13 March 2017 (UTC)
We never really know anything as per WP:CRYSTAL. What is important to do is to only connect ideas to AAH which have been specifically described as connected by WP:FRIND-sources. There is still some work to be done in that regard in our article. jps (talk) 14:02, 13 March 2017 (UTC)
I think it would help to refer more often to the distinctions that ArbCom made between different kinds of fringe. This could be "questionable science". I agree that sometimes people who are out-and-out proponents of a fringe theory take heart from scientists who have a completely different approach, and then they can use that to defend their position on Wikipedia, and yes, that's annoying. There can also be a problem when scientists are frightened away from a whole area, so much so that the fringe stuff doesn't even get debunked. Anyway, I find the article in its present state quite informative. It doesn't make me any more or less sympathetic to AAH. Itsmejudith (talk) 14:08, 12 March 2017 (UTC)
I'm not a particular fan of the arbcomm demarcation as I think it presents a false dichotomy (or really trichotomy). It is possible to have mixtures of all these ideas. There are people who believe in AAH-like ideas doing fine scientific studies. Most of what makes the studies fine is that they are not agenda-driven. The problem that the article currently has is contained in the final section where a lot of the research is being described without much referent to the topic. Still a lot of work to be done there. jps (talk) 14:02, 13 March 2017 (UTC)

I could really use some help here. The work has now started to clear out the "research" section, and I'm finding a lot of issues. In particular, AAH proponents have published a variety of papers which have clear relevance to AAH, but are not always made explicit in connection. These include papers on nutrition, locomotion, and diving. Even when the claims are made explicit in connection, the problem is that there isn't a lot of analysis being done. It feels quite similar to cold fusion papers. Wikipedia right now is basically serving as a [WP:SOAP|soapbox]] for AAH by making the implicit claim that independent research is confirming AAH left and right. It doesn't help matters much that I am basically the only person editing the page who seems to be concerned about the over-reliance on primary sources like this. Help? jps (talk) 17:18, 20 March 2017 (UTC)

I am not a proponent of the aquatic ape hypothesis, though I have been labelled as such, I have no vested interest in it nor have I ever published anything related to it (I am a research Biologist). I do not think that it is entirely plausible, and most of the features of human biology that it claims are of an aquatic origin can be explained, at least theoretically, by non-aquatic influences. However, the theory is important. Recent decades have shown great advances in knowledge of how and where humans evolved, but this cannot be said about the question of why humans evolved. At present there is no single accepted scenario of what environmental influences shaped human evolution, though it is generally accepted that humans are the product of a mosaic of evolutionary pressures, changing over time. The aquatic ape hypothesis is therefore one of a few holistic hypotheses that still has active research related to it, hence its importance. I do not approve of the present treatment of it in the Wikipedia article. I make no claims of knowing the motivations of some of the editors involved, but no doubt they are working from what they think are the best of motives. However, the strictures, based on a misapplication of Wikipedia policies, enforced by some editors on what can and cannot be included in the article has produced an article that is unfit for purpose. The primary responsibility of Wikipedia editors should be providing information in an easily accessible form, and this information needs to be verifiable by reference to relevant sources. Secondary to this responsibility should be to an attempt to present a “balanced assessment” of the sources; however, at present this seems to be the primary criterion for inclusion and the provision of information secondary or non-existent. The zeal of some editors to exclude any information that has not been commented on by opponents of the hypothesis has had a deleterious effect on the article. The article is titled “Aquatic ape hypothesis” but the subject of the article receives essentially one quotation and a single paragraph of description. This cannot amount to an adequate treatment of the core element of the subject. There are other things wrong with the article, but I will confine myself to this at present. Urselius (talk) 10:41, 5 April 2017 (UTC)
A description of Wikipedia at odds with the WP:PAGs ("The primary responsibility of Wikipedia editors should be providing information in an easily accessible form" - no, we summarize accepted knowledge which is rather more challenging than relaying "information"). Start at WP:5P and then read WP:NPOV. Sorry, we follow those, not editors clueless ideas about what Wikipedia should be. Alexbrn (talk) 10:57, 5 April 2017 (UTC)
A rather unhelpful and demonstrably erroneous response. Wikipedia has countless articles on mythical creatures, flawed concepts, discredited scientific theories and redundant philosophies, in short rejected knowledge that plays a very marginal no or part in contemporary culture or thought. What Wikipedia does is describe these subjects, with reference to whatever sources are relevant to them. It is not the place of Wikipedia editors to censor knowledge, if information is relevant to a subject it should be included, provided a reasonable balance is retained if comparing conflicting ideas or theories. Do you have any thoughts on the fact that the core subject of a fairly long article garners a mere paragraph within its text? For comparison the theory proposed by Lamarck in the Lamarckism article, concerning a largely discredited theory, has seven paragraphs. I should point out that the reason that this coverage is so curtailed is "that it gives too much prominence to the hypothesis", and consequently readers might believe it, but the hypothesis is the subject of the article! Urselius (talk) 12:42, 5 April 2017 (UTC)
I think you are mistaken about how difficult it is to summarize the core subject. I would invite you to go to the talkpage and provide some sample content that you think would help the reader understand the hypothesis better than what is currently presented. I would argue that Lamarckism is far more notable an idea both in terms of history and in terms of the way science developed than AAH is and it only makes sense that there would be better sources and easier exposition to write about that subject. To compare with AAH, you're going to need something that is similarly marginalized and similarly recent. I think plasma cosmology is somewhat apt. jps (talk) 17:22, 5 April 2017 (UTC)

Medical Hypotheses as a source

I want to draw the attention of those of you who may be able to help but may also have grown tired of all this to a recent struggle over the use of a paper published in Medical Hypotheses. This is indicative of the kind of push being had at that article. The issue here is that poor-quality sources are being preferred when they are pro-AAH but meanwhile the skeptical critiques are typically removed from the page, sometimes in direct defiance of WP:PARITY. We have people arguing on the talkpage that David Attenborough's radio show is somehow a more serious source than, for example, a blogpost written by professor of biology.

I understand that people don't like getting down in the weeds, as it were, but it is important that we do so here so that we can get to an article that can achieve some modicum of stability without being a weird paen like it was before I started working on this.

jps (talk) 11:15, 31 March 2017 (UTC)

I abandoned that page when people began the Attenborough line of argumentation. I agree completely with this assessment of the situation, any alleged support no matter how tangential or how poorly regarded the source is added, and the standard responses to the AAA as well as the standard account of human evolution is systematically marginalized with the effect of giving the reader a misleading view of the actual regree of acceptance of this hypothesis in the scientific community.·maunus · snunɐɯ· 11:51, 5 April 2017 (UTC)
Well, I would encourage you to come back. Right now Attenborough is used only as a point of reference for proponent quotes rather than pretending as an academic source, and I am hopeful that we can have it remain that way. In fact, the article is much improved, I think. jps (talk) 17:19, 5 April 2017 (UTC)

Peer review request

Wikipedia:Peer review/Aquatic ape hypothesis/archive1.

I encourage people to add their comments there and help continue to improve the article. Assessment would be appreciated as well (currently assessed at C-class).

jps (talk) 18:17, 12 April 2017 (UTC)

Talk:British Israelism

Complaint on the talk page that this article is negative. Doug Weller talk 04:46, 6 April 2017 (UTC)

I'm alone here with a British Israelite who doesn't understand how we work and has a lot more time than I do to write screeds on the talk page. Doug Weller talk 06:43, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
Hi Doug Weller, I'll join the discussion this weekend.Luther Blissetts (talk) 08:32, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
@LutherBlissetts: Thanks. Doug Weller talk 09:56, 8 April 2017 (UTC)
It's getting a bit worse. There's a problem with original research. Doug Weller talk 18:18, 18 April 2017 (UTC)
Although to be fair, they've spotted a few bad sources and I agree with them that the genetics section needs sources that actually discuss the subject. Doug Weller talk 19:53, 18 April 2017 (UTC)
I'm considering giving this article up. I'm told that BI's views are the majority view and another adherent has joined in, so I'm outnumbered. My argument that sources need to discuss the topic have fallen upon deaf ears and I know tat some good editors don't think that they need to directly discuss it. (This is mainly about the genetics section). Doug Weller talk 06:19, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Please. Nobody said it's the beliefs of the BI are the majority view of Christianity, on the contrary (see Talk), however the beliefs and evidences of the British-Israel movement is, and ought to be, the majority viewpoint on an article titled 'British Israelism', instead, when I stumbled upon the article, it was obviously violating WP:NPOV as stated not by just myself, but many others on the talk page. It was clearly a coatrack for anti white supremacy critics and others. Any casual reader would find almost no real information on the subject, and come away with a feeling that British-Israelism is a group of racists, with zero proofs of any kind, which is simply not true. Wilfred Brown (talk) 22:12, 23 April 2017 (UTC)
No it should not, no more then (dare I godwin this) the view of what the flat earthers were should be based on what flat eathers think or be used as the base of the flat earth article. It is not a violation of NPOV to put all POV with the majority POV getting prominence.Slatersteven (talk) 22:32, 23 April 2017 (UTC)

Yes, the majority of the article should neutrally describe what BI is and what it's proponents believe... but it should not do so in a way that makes the reader think it is accepted by a significant number of people. The reader needs to understand that it is widely rejected by historians, and is a fringe pseudohistorical concept. Blueboar (talk) 00:48, 24 April 2017 (UTC)

Roger D. Craig

Roger D. Craig (edit | visual edit | history) · Article talk (edit | history) · Watch

Minor character in the Who's Who of JFK conspiracy lore. There is insufficient material in reliable secondary sources, so what remains is a primary source, an e-mail posted on a forum (from the notorious unreliable Spartacus website, I might add), and a dead link that used to link to a collection of works by a conspiracy theorist (i.e. Penn Jones, Jr.). This appears to be a form of a coat rack onto which one can hang links to various conspiracy books, websites, and You Tube videos. Thoughts? Keep, Delete, or Redirect to something like Trial of Clay Shaw? - Location (talk) 13:52, 6 April 2017 (UTC)

Seems like the sort of thing that should be deleted at AfD. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 15:01, 6 April 2017 (UTC)
I redirected it into the trial. Mangoe (talk) 20:56, 6 April 2017 (UTC)
...and apparently we're going to have to go down AFD Lane instead... Mangoe (talk) 04:08, 7 April 2017 (UTC)
Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Roger D. Craig, BTW. Mangoe (talk) 13:59, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
Per that decision, I merged the material to Trial of Clay Shaw. -Location (talk) 13:57, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

Rfc notice in Talk:David Ferrie

David Ferrie (edit | visual edit | history) · Article talk (edit | history) · Watch

If interested, see Talk:David Ferrie#RfC about the inclusion of allegations made by William Gaudet. -Location (talk) 05:30, 8 April 2017 (UTC)

Looking for an uninvolved editor to do the housekeeping for what appears to be a WP:SNOWCLOSE. -Location (talk) 15:03, 19 April 2017 (UTC)
 Done ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 15:57, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

Suzanne Olsson again

A new single purpose account, User:Brainydad, removing criticism, using article to argue her fringe views, etc. Doug Weller talk 12:32, 10 April 2017 (UTC)

Blocked as a sock. Master blocked two weeks. --NeilN talk to me 05:06, 11 April 2017 (UTC)

You at it again, DOUG?

I am an author and a human being. A biography and background of my book were published on Wikipedia years ago. The page is SUZANNE OLSSON. My daughter and grand daughter happily started editing the initial article, but their edits were continually hacked. I fought with some editors to make corrections. This resulted in me being labeled a 'sock puppet' (I didn't even know what the word meant) I was accused of every Wiki sin and banned from Wiki by these very same editors who insisted on very biased and slanted edits. The topic of my book, "Jesus in Kashmir, The Lost Tomb' is about religion, and this generates personal opinion, 'slants', and biases from some Wiki editors (Like you, Doug?). Because some Wiki editors are religious, they tend to slant the article to reflect their personal views. For example, one comment states this is a "fringe theory" regardless that millions of people worldwide dont agree. Has anyone said that Magdalene as wife of Jesus is a "fringe" theory? No. In fact the tomb of Jesus has more substantiating evidence than Magdalene as wife to Jesus. Why insert derogatory remarks that reflects a non-existant opinion this is a "fringe " theory? After several years, it came to my attention that as the article currently appears, gross errors and unfavorable 'slants' and personal comments remain in the current article.

When corrections were again attempted over the past few weeks by various people worldwide,the same Wiki editor again reverted to his preferred edits, although these contain gross errors. He continues to attack the contributors more than the contents. The contents are accurate. The links are not to Wiki pages and are also accurate.

It is impossible for me or anyone to make any changes, updates, or corrections. One example is the claim that tomb of Jesus in India was first mentioned by the Ahmadii Muslims. This is blatantly false, yet every attempt to correct this and insert the correct information-with links- has resulted in revisions back to the false statements by the same 'editor'. Brainydad made recent corrections after many hours and days of being extremely careful listing links and sources- being as accurate as possible , but these edits were also immediately reverted by the same user who harassed me and my family, and all wiki editors years ago. I would like the page to be locked after the corrections are made. I am asking help from Wikipedia administrators. This has been going on for too many years now. If you are a Wiki administrator, please help me. Doug, stop showing your predujice. This has no place on Wikiepdia. Thank you — Preceding unsigned comment added by Suzanne Olsson (talkcontribs) 17:00, 10 April 2017 (UTC)

Hi User:SuzanneOlsson, if you or any one of your family want to request edits to the page, then each of you can declare that you have a WP:COI to the page concerned, and we can place a {{connected contributor}} on the talk page. You can then suggest edits to the page, to be actioned by non-involved editors, using a {{COI_editnotice}} which would also be placed on the talk page of the article. If this solution is amenable to you, then please declare who you are on your user page (not your talk page), respond below, and then the talk page of the wikipedia article can be updated accordingly. Please can I remind you to sign any posts with four tildas. I had to search the history to see who wrote the above. Thank you. Luther Blissetts (talk) 18:05, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
User:Brainydad added a large number of external links to the body of the article, Wikipedia doesn’t use external links in this manner so they were correctly removed. Theroadislong (talk) 16:08, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
Well, we need to do a great deal of clean-up on the Mary Magdalene/Jesus thing, if only to catch up all the references to the Gospel of Jesus' Wife to the denouement of that hoax, and Jesus bloodline likewise needs to be more emphatic about how this is bogonic. Mangoe (talk) 17:10, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
Along those lines I just fixed a genealogical table on Brothers of Jesus based on Tabor's book. I haven't read it, but our page on it sure looks like the description of fringe that does not merit such prominence on the Brothers page. Can anyone confirm this? Agricolae (talk) 17:24, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
I'm assuming that Suzanne Olsson (talk · contribs) lost access to her earlier account SuzanneOlsson (talk · contribs) She is still banned from all pages on Wikipedia except for the talk page of her article and BLPN. I posted this to her talk page earlier today:"I'm not suggesting you've broken it or forgotten it, but it applies to this account also: "SuzanneOlsson (talk · contribs)'s topic ban is extended to include all pages on Wikipedia, with the exception of User talk:SuzanneOlsson. Suzanne Olsson is, however, allowed to make comments regarding her biography on Talk:Suzanne M. Olsson and on WP:BLPN. Salvio Let's talk about it! 13:03, 13 May2013 (UTC)"[4] Note that the article on her was deleted and is now at Suzanne Olsson‎ @Salvio giuliano:. Doug Weller talk 20:37, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
Taking into account this User's broad ban, any discussion about Suzanne Olsson (user or page) should take place on the article's or editor's Talk pages and not here, so the User can particulate without violating the ban. But I do still want to know if anyone has an opinion of Tabor's The Jesus Dynasty. Agricolae (talk) 22:02, 10 April 2017 (UTC)
I went through a bunch of reviews (there were a lot of them). I couldn't find anyone who actually has something to say positive about the central thesis, though there was a lot of commendation for much of the background material. Those who addressed the thesis itself were strongly negative. Nearly everyone was critical of the high degree of supposition. I didn't find anyone saying, "hey, that's a great theory!" Mangoe (talk) 01:39, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
I guess I should have asked that before I reformatted the table. Away it goes. Thanks. Agricolae (talk) 01:47, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
Just to note that Suzanne Olsson has been blocked for two weeks for sockpuppetry. Again. Doug Weller talk 13:43, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
And there's a new editor stating that the article is a family project.[5] I've started Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Kashmir2. Signing late. Doug Weller talk 20:04, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
I've just made a bold edit. I was trying to find some info on wikipedia about the Muslim saints, and found myself going down a proverbial rabbit hole. I made a statement about removing the redirect on the talk page.[6] Luther Blissetts (talk) 22:43, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
SPI was concluded with indefinite blocks all around. Doug Weller talk 05:17, 12 April 2017 (UTC)

Regenerative agriculture

This article makes me stabby, but is it valid? Guy (Help!) 20:58, 11 April 2017 (UTC)

Without looking too much into it (more like: With kinda glancing in it's general direction as I walk past) I can say that the opening sentence, which is "Regenerative agriculture is an approach to food and farming systems that regenerates topsoil and enhances biodiversity now and long into the future." is a description which would absolutely encompass crop rotation and other farming techniques (not my forte, sorry I can't think of any more examples) which have been practiced for a long, long time. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 21:05, 11 April 2017 (UTC)
3 field system ;) Only in death does duty end (talk) 06:22, 12 April 2017 (UTC)

Michelle Beltran

Article on a psychic cyclist could use some work. Note that I'm taking Maxmillien de Lafayette,[7] author of over 2500 books according to his blurb on Amnazon, to RSN - we shouldn't be using UFO researchers as sources, and we use him for a load of BLPs.[8] Doug Weller talk 15:47, 14 April 2017 (UTC)

I have found absolutely ZERO WP:FRIND compliant sources on this person. Thus Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Michelle Beltran. jps (talk) 16:47, 14 April 2017 (UTC)

Ann Louise Gittleman

Goldacre calls her a pseudoscientist with good reason: [9].
I took a shot at answering this editor's initial requests, but I'm not seeing the necessary progress in the responses where FRINGE, BLP, ARBPS, and COI apply. Someone want to give it go? --Ronz (talk) 00:05, 15 April 2017 (UTC)
(musing) Hmm. Before my wife and I were married some years ago, my Mom sent me Gittleman's Fat Flush book and we used it successfully to get nice and trim for our wedding. Does that give me a conflict of interest? Just in case it does, I've restricted my activity in that article to just maintenance edits, although I recognized the pseudoscience in the book. (Pseudoscience aside, the basic plan advocates reducing carbs, eating healthy foods especially vegetables, drinking plenty of non-sugary liquids, and getting moderate regular exercise; but any plan like that will work regardless of what you name it or how many thousand words of junk science you write about it). ~Anachronist (talk) 21:14, 18 April 2017 (UTC)

Species Branding Hypothesis

Seeking Help from Life science Experts

The draft above discusses a grand problem in Biology "The species Problem"... The draft is titled 'Species Branding Hypothesis' and (as I believe) has the solution to this age old problem.

I am concern that my draft could be rejected out as belonging to "Fringe theories"... I need help from Subject Matter Experts who are Biologist dealing with Taxonomy, systematics, Evolutionary biology etc... to validate the draft and add support...

Kind regards, Joseph J.

Jayabalan.joseph (talk) 21:33, 15 April 2017 (UTC)

A major problem I see right away is that it's written like an essay, not an article. 2600:1017:B002:16FB:4ECB:2A49:85CD:2F31 (talk) 21:48, 15 April 2017 (UTC)
Also, for the theory itself, you seem to be citing your own work. This suggests you may have a conflict of interest (see WP:COI) in creating this page. Equally important, it suggests a notability problem - for a theory to be notable, it needs to have received significant detailed coverage in sources independent of the proposer. You are using a lot of references to support your thesis, but not to support the fact that anyone else knows your theory even exists, and that it makes a meaningful contribution to the field of study. Agricolae (talk) 22:26, 15 April 2017 (UTC)
Worse yet, he's citing his own self-published work. That last paragraph alone is evidence that this has no place here. --00:11, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
Now under discussion at Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Draft:Species Branding Hypothesis. --Orange Mike | Talk 00:16, 16 April 2017 (UTC)

Robert Sungenis

Robert Sungenis (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views)

Let's include a list of self-published books from a fringe Catholic geocentrist on his biography page, shall we? That's a reasonable thing to do, right?


I don't have the patience to deal with this ongoing nonsense.

jps (talk) 15:00, 16 April 2017 (UTC)

Given that some of this stuff is what he is noted for, yes we should include a list of his works. It is his writing and film making that he is noted for. he is not "famous for being famous, but for his advocacy (I.E. talking about) "of Catholic apologetics and his advocacy of a pseudoscientific belief that the Earth is the center of the universe", not (for example) not doing anything.Slatersteven (talk) 15:02, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
Sungenis is not "noted" for his vanity publications. The list is pure WP:SOAP. jps (talk) 15:06, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
Err yes he is [11] [12], that is precisely what he is note for.Slatersteven (talk) 15:10, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
My god you're tiresome. Neither of those sources show that what makes Sungenis notable is that list of self-published books. jps (talk) 16:01, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
Are there independent sources who discuss his self published books? Because without such sources, it's difficult to say that they are noteworthy or WP:DUE in any way. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 16:20, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
Lay of the PA's please. No one has sdaid that that list of works make him notable, only that he is noted for some of the works in that list. Do not misrepresent what other edds say.Slatersteven (talk) 16:29, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
We have two RS (form the article) discussing some of his work here.Slatersteven (talk) 16:29, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
You have no "RS" that discuss the corpus as you desired to have it listed. Most of the self-published books are noticed by exactly no one. jps (talk) 16:31, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
I neither desire nor not desire to list his works, I disagreed with your (lack of) reason for deleting it. As I said on the talk page, the fact not all the works are not notable does not give justification for removing the whole section. What id would do is justify removing the non notable works. It was your block deletion with out a valid explanation rather then attempting to work towards a workable solution I objected to.Slatersteven (talk) 16:58, 16 April 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────The notable works are already included in the article. There is no point in having a list. It's not okay to revert when you have no justification for the inclusion. jps (talk) 17:03, 16 April 2017 (UTC)

No, they are not. Two are now listed on the talk page that are not referenced in the article.Slatersteven (talk) 17:11, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
  • As a general rule we don't list all of the works of persons known for promoting fringe theories. Unless some evidence of independent notability can be found our normal practice is not to include that sort of thing per PROFRINGE, NOTADVERT and DUE. I'm not seeing any compelling reason for inclusion of most these and to be frank, this smell like an attempt to use Wikipedia for promotion. -Ad Orientem (talk) 17:25, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
I will add that we make reference to "Sungenis' writings include antisemitic ideas, sources, and claims ", yet do not list what these are. If they are notable enough to be mentioned in passing they are notable enough to be listed. I (again) am not arguing for inclusion of them all, but if we say "he has written about X" we should include what he has written. Again this is not an argument for exclusion of the section, but of it being more discriminatory.Slatersteven (talk) 17:29, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
You're hardly the most objective user considering the fact that you argue in favor of damn near every fringe theory that shows up here. 2600:1017:B005:8064:97FC:D982:7F45:5A29 (talk) 20:33, 16 April 2017 (UTC)
And this is not about me, comment on the content not the user.Slatersteven (talk) 08:30, 17 April 2017 (UTC)

So is it or is it not true that not all of Mr Sungenis's publications (that have been reported on in RS) are not mentioned in the article? Is it also not true that we actually were (in the article) discussing one of his books but I had to (yesterday) actually add the title of that book? Thus (as of the ranching of this thread) the article did not mention (by name) all of his notable works.Slatersteven (talk) 08:33, 17 April 2017 (UTC)

  • Comment, as User:Tachyon1010101010 points out, other articles about Catholic apologists tend to include exhaustive lists of publications, for example Peter Kreeft. I think it may be appropriate to examine that practice in more detail, particularly under WP:NOT and WP:DUE. But this article is not those, and the fact that certain other articles may not meet our guidelines should have no bearing on this discussion. I do not think that a list of publications of non-influential publications belongs in an article. If any individual publications are discussed in reliable secondary sources, then the views of those secondary sources can be described with attribution in the text of the article. Sławomir Biały (talk) 10:19, 17 April 2017 (UTC)

The reasons why I think the Robert Sungenis Wikipedia page should have a publications/bibliography section are:

1.) He is a recognized scholar in the field of Catholic Apologetics. The following scholars from various fields (Theology, Physics, Astronomy, etc.) have endorsed his work:

Not By Faith Alone: a.) The Most Reverend Fabian W. Bruskewitz b.) Ronald K. Tecelli, S.J. c.) Dr. Robert Fastiggi d.) Rev. Peter M. J. Stravinskas e.) Karl Keating f.) Rev. George W. Rutler g.) Scott Hahn, Ph.D. h.) Patrick Madrid i.) Kenneth J. Howell, Ph.D. j.) William Marshner k.) Rev. Paul Rothermel l.) Thomas Howard, Ph.D. m.) Professor John Saward n.) Rev. Pablo Gadenz o.) Professor Philip Blosser p.) Dr. Arthur Sippo q.) Steve Ray

Not By Bread Alone: a.) The Most Reverend Fabian W. Bruskewitz b.) Reverend Mitchell Pacwa c.) Thomas Howard, Ph.D.

Not By Scripture Alone: a.) Dr. Peter Kreeft

Galileo was Wrong The Church Was Right: a.) Gerardus Bouw, Ph.D. b.) Vincent J. Schmithorst, Ph.D. c.) Gerald Benitz, M.A., Ph.D. d.) Neville Thomas Jones, Ph.D. e.) E. Michael Jones, Ph.D. f.) Joseph A. Strada, Ph.D. g.) Russell T. Arndts, Ph.D. h.) Thaddeus J. Kozinski, Ph.D. i.) Martin G. Selbrede j.) John Domen, M.S. k.) John Salza

2.) Not all his writings are self-published. If self-published was really the problem, then why not only include works that are not self-published?

Not By Faith Alone: The Biblical Evidence for the Catholic Doctrine of Justification, Queenship Publishing (1996), 774 pp. ISBN 1-57918-008-6

Not By Scripture Alone: A Catholic Critique of the Protestant Doctrine of Sola Scriptura, Queenship Publishing (1997), 650 pp. ISBN 1-57918-055-8

How Can I Get to Heaven? The Bible's Teaching on Salvation Made Easy to Understand, Queenship Publishing (1997), 334 pp. ISBN 1-57918-007-8

Not By Bread Alone: The Biblical and Historical Evidence for the Eucharistic Sacrifice, Queenship Publishing (2000), 450 pp. ISBN 1-57918-124-4

The Gospel According to Matthew (Catholic Apologetics Study Bible, Vol. 1), Queenship Publishing (2003), 427 pp. ISBN 1-57918-236-4

The Apocalypse of St. John (Catholic Apologetics Study Bible, Vol. 2), Queenship Publishing (2007), 544 pp. ISBN 1-57918-329-8

The Consecration of Russia: How Seven Popes Failed to Heed Heaven’s Command and Brought Turmoil to the Church and the World, Hometown Publications, Inc. copyright 2013, 384 pages, ISBN 978-0-9841859-9-3.

3.) Both Slatersteven and Nomoskedasticity have made valid arguments in the Robert Sungenis Talk Page that have not been refuted. Sungenis writings have been mentioned in secondary sources. Why not mention only those writings in the publication/bibliography section if the problem really was whether or not they are mentioned in secondary sources?

4.) There is a broad consensus in Wikipedia of allowing BLPs to have Publications/Bibliography sections.

5.) Wikipedia has policies and guidelines, but they are not carved in stone; their content and interpretation can evolve over time. The principles and spirit matter more than literal wording, and sometimes improving Wikipedia requires making exceptions. Be bold but not reckless in updating articles. And do not agonize over making mistakes: every past version of a page is saved, so mistakes can be easily corrected.

Conclusion: The Robert Sungenis Wikipedia page should have a Bibliography/Publications section.Tachyon1010101010 (talk) 20:28, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

The guy pushes FRINGE science and you write that scholars from Physics, Astronomy have endorsed his work? Please read WP:PSCI. Jytdog (talk) 06:01, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Maybe they did not endorse his Physics or Astronomy? he writes about more then just those two things.Slatersteven (talk) 13:24, 20 April 2017 (UTC)

Sungenis is a recognized scholar in the field of Catholic Apologetics. Even if you remove Galileo Was Wrong The Church Was Right and the scholars who endorsed it, you are still left with all these theologians and apologists who have endorsed his apologetic work:

a.) The Most Reverend Fabian W. Bruskewitz b.) Ronald K. Tecelli, S.J. c.) Dr. Robert Fastiggi d.) Rev. Peter M. J. Stravinskas e.) Karl Keating f.) Rev. George W. Rutler g.) Scott Hahn, Ph.D. h.) Patrick Madrid i.) Kenneth J. Howell, Ph.D. j.) William Marshner k.) Rev. Paul Rothermel l.) Thomas Howard, Ph.D. m.) Professor John Saward n.) Rev. Pablo Gadenz o.) Professor Philip Blosser p.) Dr. Arthur Sippo q.) Steve Ray r.) Reverend Mitchell Pacwa s.) Dr. Peter Kreeft

Sample of the Endorsements

Not By Faith Alone

Reverend Peter M. J. Stravinskas: “While this present work is clearly scholarly, it must be distinguished from many other efforts along these lines over the past five centuries.”

Dr. Scott Hahn: “What may come as a surprise, however, is the fact that this work represents the first book-length response by an American Catholic to Protestant attacks against the Catholic Church’s teaching on faith and justification in more than half a century — perhaps longer, since I am not familiar with a single title written in the 20th century!”

Dr. Arthur Sippo: “This book not only deals with the historic debates on the question of justification dating from the 16th century, it is also the first apologetic book to directly challenge the recent writings of Protestant critics of Catholicism such as McGrath, Sproul, Geisler, McCarthy, MacArthur, White, et al.”

Dr. Robert Fastiggi: “This study shows Robert Sungenis to be a theologian and scholar of the first rank.”

Not By Bread Alone

Most Reverend Fabian W. Bruskewitz: "Robert Sungenis has prepared a wonderful defense and explanation of the Holy Eucharist based on Sacred Scripture and Catholic theology.”

Reverend Mitchell Pacwa: “Robert Sungenis' examination of the Catholic teaching on the Mass is a careful, step by theological step understanding of a key doctrine. He gives the reader the Scripture passages and exegesis, the Patristic and the Conciliar documentation.”

Dr. Thomas Howard: "Robert Sungenis' work - all of it - fills the word "exhaustive" with fresh, and even exhilarating, significance.”

Not By Scripture Alone

Dr. Peter Kreeft: "This book is the single most important, systematic, logical, sustained, direct, multifaceted treatment of this central issue that I know of."

The EndTachyon1010101010 (talk) 04:07, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

Nordic Israelism

As is happening with British Israelism, this article seems to have a number of sources that are just minor websites and is promoting a minor group that wouldn't merit an article and may not be much more than a few people and a website for all I can tell. 13:02, 19 April 2017 (UTC)— Preceding unsigned comment added by Doug Weller (talkcontribs)

I removed the external links per WP:ELNO #2 but I'm not sure about removing them from the references. They are used as citations to statements such as "Icelandic Nordic Israelists believe..." The websites have no reasonable justification for saying what they say, but they do confirm the beliefs described. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 16:04, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

Legal Fringe

RfC was withdrawn Jytdog (talk) 16:14, 20 April 2017 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Please see Talk:Plummer_v._State#Request_for_Comment_-_Internet_meme_section where the dispute is over how to source discussion of FRINGE legal concepts. Jytdog (talk) 04:07, 20 April 2017 (UTC)

I disagree with the above description of what the dispute is about. Rather than post my possibly flawed view of what the dispute is about, I encourage the interested reader to read the actual discussion at Talk:Plummer_v._State. --Guy Macon (talk) 05:20, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
  • I do not believe there is such a thing as "legal fringe" and I have never seen this terminology used in any legal secondary sources. Either it is the law in that jurisdiction; it is not the law in that jurisdiction; there are courts, districts or circuits differing opinion to what the law is; it is a novel area of law not decided upon yet in the jurisdiction; or for some other reason, it is uncertain how a judge in the jurisdiction might rule on it.
I am confused as to why we would want to document non-lawyer's bogus opinions about the law in sources written by authors who are equally unqualified to comment on the law. How about we just focus on independent high quality secondary sources as required by WP:RS, such as law reviews. --David Tornheim (talk) 05:52, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Law in the U.S. is not binary nor black and white, it is gray. It is always based on the facts and the law, both statutory and case (or common law) and is more like a sliding scale than a simple yes or no decision. Next, strict standards like WP:MEDRS doesn't apply to legal articles, so requiring a law review article or legal tome is not applicable. Finally, you mention (indirectly) that the source should be written by people who are qualified to comment on the law. In other words, lawyers. I think that we'll hear from those at the RFC, just like we have on every other issue that JYTDog has brought up. Thus far, consensus has gone against him every time, likely due to the intricacies of the law and the legal citation system. GregJackP Boomer! 07:17, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
No one is saying anything about MEDRS except you. Why are you discussing it? You are casting more bullshit around, like a litigator does. This one is not going to go your way as you are violating policy up the wazoo here.
We will see tho! Jytdog (talk) 07:22, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Please discuss content without casting aspersions at contributors. It would be nice if you would quit forum shopping and direct all discussion to one location. GregJackP Boomer! 07:56, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
I just posted a neutral notice here and responded to two people who posted confused things under it. I have posted my !vote there and all I am doing at this point is responding to your misrepresentations there. Would be very happy if you would stop so I can just sit back and watch what folks have to say. Jytdog (talk) 08:25, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Yes, I agree that the law is often gray, especially when one applies it to new and complex fact patterns. What I meant to convey above is that legal writing, whether in statutes, case law, secondary sources, legal memos, etc., is generally distinct and precise in describing what the law is in various or specific jurisdiction, exactly how to apply it to the case at bar, rather than muddy things with vagueness and ambiguity. In the particular case, the writing by a retired law enforcement officer about various things he sort of remembers or doesn't remember about some training he took years ago at the police academy is not good legal writing and should not be the basis for deciding whether various alt right web-sites have any idea of the extent to which an Indiana Supreme Court case from 1893 is still good law in Indiana, whether it is persuasive in any other jurisdiction, and how it might be properly applied today. I just don't see why we are even considering such unreliable sources for a Wikipedia article on a court case. --David Tornheim (talk) 10:23, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
FRINGE in Wikipedia means opinions about X that are way outside the mainstream- beyond minority. Like Infowars claiming that the Supreme Court says you can kill a cop if you think the arrest is not valid. If there is some law review that addresses that, it would be great. Find one. This is the second time you have completely misunderstood the problem. Jytdog (talk) 05:56, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
If it is fringe by that definition, then it probably won't be in the law reviews or any other similar quality WP:RS, and hence there would be no reason to cover it. And according to our standards, as I remember them, we leave out non-notable fringe theories. Problem solved. If I have misunderstood the "problem", what is the "problem"? This seems straight-forward. --David Tornheim (talk) 10:41, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
You don't understand why we have a FRINGE guideline nor its WP:PARITY section. Jytdog (talk) 10:50, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
I must admit, I had never carefully read WP:PARITY until now. I am shocked that it allows unreliable fringe theories to be articulated and then debunked by equally unreliable sources out of some sense of "fairness". I just thought editors had been blatantly violating and disregarding our rules about quality sourcing when they were, in fact, just following this terrible guideline. It's bad enough to apply it to science, and now extend the scope to law? Yuck. I will oppose that it if it comes up. It just reduces the quality of our articles to cite to such low quality sources. I would love to hear about any other major encyclopedia, like Britannica, that does this. It is hard to imagine. --David Tornheim (talk) 11:09, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
I don't read WP:PARITY the same way (i.e. "that it allows unreliable fringe theories to be articulated and then debunked by equally unreliable sources"), but I don't doubt that others do. My experience with this is in articles about and related to various JFK conspiracies that are drenched with unreliable sources which are in turn combated with tons of reliable primary source information because reliable secondary sources don't bother with it. Perhaps WP:PARITY needs further discussion/clarification in Wikipedia talk:Fringe theories. -Location (talk) 13:01, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Location Thanks for seeing my concern. It just seems like it goes directly against the language I have read over and over again in WP:RS, WP:PRIMARY, WP:SECONDARY, WP:RSSELF, etc. Wikipedia articles should be based on reliable, published sources, making sure that all majority and significant minority views that have appeared in those sources are covered.... If no reliable sources can be found on a topic, Wikipedia should not have an article on it. It just seems strange to me that we would set aside key standards about WP:SECONDARY just to present, talk about, and then debunk these so-called "fringe" theories, rather than simply ignore them entirely, giving them the attention they deserve: NONE. --David Tornheim (talk) 13:54, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
P.S. As for JFK, yeah, that's certainly a good case to consider: I imagine there should be high quality secondary sources that speak to the issue. I'll be there are plenty of historians and film reviewers who have commented extensively on Oliver Stone's movie. In fact, I think I have read some. Maybe I'll review the article we have on that to see what we did there. --David Tornheim (talk) 14:01, 20 April 2017 (UTC) Okay I looked at it (John F. Kennedy assassination conspiracy theories. That didn't take long. Horrifying. Nearly all of it looks like WP:OR. I don't see the point of the article that list every one of the books. If a book about a "JFK conspiracy theory" is notable, it needs to be mentioned in independent secondary sources. Otherwise, why bother with it? If John Q. Public makes a blog with some new novel theory does it immediately qualify to be included? --David Tornheim (talk) 14:11, 20 April 2017 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

CIA Kennedy assassination conspiracy theory

Wow. This is really bad even by the generally poor standard we see for most Kennedy assassination conspiracy theory articles. Hopelessly POV and PROFRINGE. -Ad Orientem (talk) 14:21, 20 April 2017 (UTC)

  • Agree as per my comments above in this edit. Thanks for opening up this section Ad Orientem and acknowledging what I also saw! --David Tornheim (talk) 14:41, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Agree. Even without reading the article - although I have multiple times over the years - it is clear from the References section that this is another one of those articles largely built upon the claims of fringe sources (e.g. Baker, Douglas, Lane, Marr, Summers) that are rebutted by primary source material (e.g. the reports and supporting documents of the Warren Commission and HSCA) in the name of WP:PARITY. In my opinion, the claims of fringe sources should only be included to the extent that they are addressed in reliable secondary sources. Unfortunately, I have had poor luck getting others to agree. -Location (talk) 14:55, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
The article can certainly be improved. But this seems to me to be a pretty sweeping condemnation. Independent journalists are not necessarily wrong because they disagree with the government. What, for example, makes Anthony Summers "fringe"? Has he made suggestions clearly rebutted by facts uncovered by the government investigations? What's an example? Joegoodfriend (talk) 15:48, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
The suggestion that Oswald did not act alone is rebutted by the facts uncovered by the government investigations. Where Summers' views have been reported in reliable secondary sources, they should could be included. Unfortunately, throughout our Wikipedia articles we have a lot of cherry-picking of his claims and speculations even when secondary sources have not reported on them. When something is a WP:REDFLAG, it needs to meet certain standards before inserting it into an article. -Location (talk) 16:16, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Sorry, this article is nakedly one sided. It repeatedly makes reference to the report of the House Committee on Assassinations, even noting that its conclusions were based on acoustic evidence, without bothering to mention that the evidence has been debunked. The whole article is a PROFRINGE COATRACK masquerading as an encyclopedic article. -Ad Orientem (talk) 16:26, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
"The suggestion that Oswald did not act alone is rebutted by the facts uncovered by the government investigations." Well, no. There you have our basic disagreement. First of all the HSCA concluded likely conspiracy, and not just based on the acoustic evidence. People working on the the HSCA, including much of its leadership, investigators and subject matter experts agreed: conspiracy.
Furthermore, you study can any number of references (Sylvia Meagher is a classic) that compare the actual facts of the assassination with the Warren Commission's conclusions and find, to make a long story short, a dramatic mismatch.
Look, editor Location is making some great edits. And I'll be the first to agree that some sources used in these articles should never be used (Fetzer, Marrs). But there's a tendency for the editors to push the idea anything that suggests conspiracy is FRINGE, and I'll continue to disagree. Joegoodfriend (talk) 16:43, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
I don't see the totality of the HSCA findings the way you do, but I do agree with your point that there are some conspiracy beliefs that are more fringe than others. -Location (talk) 16:51, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
Ad Orientem: Excellent point. Pages 196 to 225 of the HSCA final report discuss the CIA and the conclusion that they were not involved, yet their findings are not summarized in the article. I imagine that there are various reliable secondary sources that discuss this finding, too. -Location (talk) 16:51, 20 April 2017 (UTC)
People working on the the HSCA, including much of its leadership, investigators and subject matter experts agreed: conspiracy. That's simply not true, Joe, beyond the belief of many of those people going into the investigation in the first place. As for the actual investigation, the ONLY evidence which convincingly established "conspiracy" was the acoustic evidence. But that "proof" turned out to be debunked in the end. This is borne out by the fact that the only evidence in the final report (which concluded "conspiracy") that does not appear in the draft report (which concluded there was insufficient evidence to establish conspiracy) was... the acoustic evidence. The dissent is explicit on this and this is further borne out by the listing of "factors" in the final report which is not evidence, instead "factors" such as the scientific investigations did not preclude a conspiracy, and that a Ruby/Oswald relationship couldn't be dismissed as readily as the WC had done, even though compelling evidence of an actual relationship was lacking! Read the various areas of investigations in the report - NONE rise to the conclusion of "conspiracy" save for the scientific acoustic evidence. Canada Jack (talk) 01:11, 23 April 2017 (UTC)

Draft:LGBTQ people buried alongside

Article was deleted. Mangoe (talk) 20:27, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

This needs major pruning of fantasy relationships, e.g. Anne Sullivan and Helen Keller. Mangoe (talk) 11:10, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

Does this article even have purpose?Slatersteven (talk) 11:29, 21 April 2017 (UTC)
Well, apparently it does, as another place to allege homosexuality. I haven't read Alan Bray's book, but from what I've seen in reviews its position on the relationships is way more subtle than the assertion that they were sexual in the modern sense—or for that matter, sexual at all, and given how many older claims are being justified through it, that is a problem. The more I think about it, however, the more I come to question the notability of the ostensible subject matter. It would be more surprising for famous couples not to buried near each other. But not that surprising. Mangoe (talk) 12:45, 21 April 2017 (UTC)
The more I think about it, the more arbitrary and less encyclopedic I think this list is, and the more I think it should be proposed for deletion. WP is not a repository for indiscriminate lists. DoctorJoeE review transgressions/talk to me! 13:01, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Wikipedia has historically had much more lax standards in terms of WP:OR/WP:SYNTH for lists than regular articles (e.g. List of scientists opposing the mainstream scientific assessment of global warming). The general rule is that if an easy-to-define standard can be explained in the WP:LISTCRITERIA, then you can have the list. The "encyclopedic" nature of the list is assumed based on an ability to verifiably populate the list. I'm not a fan of this, but that's what has happened here. jps (talk) 13:17, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

All rather moot as it has been deleted.Slatersteven (talk) 15:38, 21 April 2017 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Ten Lost Tribes and Pseudohistory

The problems I mentioned above concerning British Israelism are spreading. New edits to Ten Lost Tribes, removal of Ten Lost Tribes and British Israelism from Pseudohistory. Doug Weller talk 09:33, 23 April 2017 (UTC)

Forgot. 1 of the 3 current editors in BI topics (User:Scynthian declares he is an official of a branch of the British-Israel World Federation, another fairly inactive one User:Michael A Clark I'm pretty sure is (although he doesn't respond on his talk page), the third, User:Wilfred Brown who I do not think is a member of the BIWF says he's studied Bi for 33 years but points out that he hasn't stated his personal belief, although he doesn't seem to agree that it's fringe. Doug Weller talk 14:09, 23 April 2017 (UTC)
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