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DB Charm Commentary (part 1)

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  • #46
    Originally posted by glamourweaver View Post
    Torture is effective at getting a prisoner to say what you want them to say. This creates the illusion that it works since it often verifies what the torturer believes to be true.
    That is one of the problems facing anyone using torture, yes. I believe I acknowledged it above. The thing is that it can manage to extract useful information, especially if you are dealing with things that are difficult to search for but easy to verify, such as a physical location or the cipher key for a coded message. This is what makes torture a constant moral conundrum. In wartime, information can save the lives of your people. Do you stain your hands with torture or do you forever wonder how much blood is on your hands because you didn't?

    I don't support the use of torture. It's too easy to make it your hammer in a world of nails. But support the claim that torture doesn't ever work? That's factually inaccurate.

    If humans stopped using bullshit means to gather information just because the results didn't actually have any relation to reality, "virginity exams" wouldn't have remained a thing for thousands of years till present day.
    From my understanding of what constitutes a "virginity exam", that's just the closest thing to physical evidence you can get. Yes, it has a high rate of both false positives and false negatives, but you seem to be faulting people for trying to put a scientific standard to a problem. I suspect your real problem is with the reasons why they want to know rather than the how.



    Masters of the Industrial Elements
    Upon the Rock of Tradition: The Memorial Exalted
    Ghosts: A Revision (2nd Edition)
    The Underworld (3rd Edition)
    ​From The Crucible: Crafting As A Struggle

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    • #47
      Originally posted by Kyeudo View Post
      ...but you seem to be faulting people for trying to put a scientific standard to a problem. I suspect your real problem is with the reasons why they want to know rather than the how.
      Both are valid criticisms.

      Science has limits on what it can analyze. Science can't address a hypothesis that isn't falsifiable. Trying to use the scientific standard on a problem that lacks falsifiable status is something we can fault people for; they're using the wrong tool for the problem. There is no biological state of "virginity." Any test of virginity is scientifically invalid because there's no way to empirically observe virginity, as it isn't something that exists in material form.

      And of course, there's plenty of reason to have issue with the cultural norms that reinforce virginity tests because it's very unhealthy form of social behavioral control. Though there's a third issue of the having a real problem with not why it is being done, or the precise procedure in question, but how they're done in a performative sense. That is, virginity exams aren't some private procedure done between a person and their doctor with all the protections of confidentiality done solely for the mental well being of the person requesting it be done. They're public performances where a person's physical body and privacy is being tossed aside to assuage public interests in what isn't a public matter.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
        Science has limits on what it can analyze. Science can't address a hypothesis that isn't falsifiable. Trying to use the scientific standard on a problem that lacks falsifiable status is something we can fault people for; they're using the wrong tool for the problem. There is no biological state of "virginity." Any test of virginity is scientifically invalid because there's no way to empirically observe virginity, as it isn't something that exists in material form.
        "Has had sex at least once" is a reasonably falsifiable claim.

        And of course, there's plenty of reason to have issue with the cultural norms that reinforce virginity tests because it's very unhealthy form of social behavioral control. Though there's a third issue of the having a real problem with not why it is being done, or the precise procedure in question, but how they're done in a performative sense. That is, virginity exams aren't some private procedure done between a person and their doctor with all the protections of confidentiality done solely for the mental well being of the person requesting it be done. They're public performances where a person's physical body and privacy is being tossed aside to assuage public interests in what isn't a public matter.
        Mostly agreed. Any real practical concerns died back in the Iron Age.



        Masters of the Industrial Elements
        Upon the Rock of Tradition: The Memorial Exalted
        Ghosts: A Revision (2nd Edition)
        The Underworld (3rd Edition)
        ​From The Crucible: Crafting As A Struggle

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        • #49
          Originally posted by Kyeudo View Post
          "Has had sex at least once" is a reasonably falsifiable claim.
          Yep. And, of course, there's no functional test for it besides direct observation. The prevailing issue is that "virginity" is a loose social construct with multiple definitions around the concept of a lack of sexual experience. What counts as an act that results in the loss of virginity is in a constant state of cultural flux. There's no universal acceptance of which sex acts remove virginity and which don't. For example, heterosexual couples frequently use a much stricter definition of penetrative vaginal intercourse so they can remain virgins despite doing other things, while LGBTQ+ individuals frequently express a much looser concept of virginity if they even hold to it at all since vagina penetration might not be possible at all in a given relationship, and this is a current issue in scientific study of sexual behavioral patterns because the 'traditional' definition is one now recognized to have a significant heterosexual bias that's not useful for getting a solid idea of average rates of sexual activity within a population/demographic. There are unsettled (because there is no actual settling of them) debates on whether climax is necessary, consent is necessary (which is an older debate that some people might imagine), bloody discharge is necessary, and if virginity can be maintained or even regained despite having had sex.

          So "virginity" remains beyond science, because it isn't something that can be falsified even if specific claims that are frequently linked to the concept of virginity can be.

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          • #50
            So we have the rest of the Dragon-Blooded Charmset now. Do you guys maybe possibly want to talk about those?

            Like, how cool the new Dragon Vortex Technique is?

            Or how nice it is that Lore lets you give motes, an Elemental Aura, and even a level of your anima banner to someone else, all with the same Charm?


            Formerly Inugami, formerly Tornado Wolf.

            My RWBY Blog on Tumblr: Semblances, Kingdoms, Grimm, and more!

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            • #51
              Is it just me, or is Observer Awareness Method very hard to avoid? If they can get 1 success on a roll, they always know if they're being observed.
              Knowing your location is harder, but my reading of comparing the roll to (stealth) is the sneaker can't use an excellency or stunts or willpower, and plenty of people will want to hide who don't have great guile.
              Also, as a reflexive charm costing 1 mote, it's very easy to activate it repeatedly until you get lucky on the check, or the person observing you runs out of motes to boost their guile.
              Also, since it doesn't offer a roll by the hider, or rely on any senses, or involve an awareness charm, very few charms interact with it. Maybe the more mental of the solar stealth charms?

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              • #52
                Originally posted by autXautY View Post
                Is it just me, or is Observer Awareness Method very hard to avoid? If they can get 1 success on a roll, they always know if they're being observed.
                Knowing your location is harder, but my reading of comparing the roll to (stealth) is the sneaker can't use an excellency or stunts or willpower, and plenty of people will want to hide who don't have great guile.
                Also, as a reflexive charm costing 1 mote, it's very easy to activate it repeatedly until you get lucky on the check, or the person observing you runs out of motes to boost their guile.
                Also, since it doesn't offer a roll by the hider, or rely on any senses, or involve an awareness charm, very few charms interact with it. Maybe the more mental of the solar stealth charms?
                The Dragonblood has to beat the higher of stealth or guile. You can definitely increase your guile through various means, and I have to assume that this is a stealth roll as opposed to just the stealth skill, so that can be likewise increased.

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                • #53
                  Originally posted by Sunder the Gold View Post
                  So we have the rest of the Dragon-Blooded Charmset now. Do you guys maybe possibly want to talk about those?

                  Like, how cool the new Dragon Vortex Technique is?

                  Or how nice it is that Lore lets you give motes, an Elemental Aura, and even a level of your anima banner to someone else, all with the same Charm?
                  I started a new thread. And yes, new Dragon Vortex 100% rocks. (Well, if you've got a full circle using it then it 20% rocks and 20% fire and...)


                  Current project: Stranger Creations, unofficial settings and NPCs for Exalted.

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