User talk:Martin Baldwin-Edwards

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Citizendium charter drafting commitee nomination

Hi Martin, You've been nominated by a fellow Citizendium member to be a candidate for election to the Citizendium charter drafting committee.

If you haven't been following the discussion in the forums, we're getting ready to establish a charter for Citizendium that outlines the project's goals, ideals, and basic structure. To get the process moving, we put together a plan for electing a group of Citizens to compose a draft of the charter, which will then be submitted for community review. You can find more about the plan here.

You've been nominated by another Citizen to be a candidate for election to that committee. The next step is up to you: you may either accept or decline the nomination by going here and following the instructions at the top of the page.

If you have any questions, just let me know. --Joe Quick 14:58, 18 September 2009 (UTC)

Charter drafting candidacy

Hi Martin,

Thanks for accepting your nomination to be a candidate for election to the drafting committee for the Citizendium charter.

If you'd like, there is a provision in the plan that provides a place for you to compose a position statement. You are not required to do this in order to be a candidate for election to the committee, but it would be helpful to others during the voting period. Even if you don't compose a statement before the election period concludes, should you be elected it might be helpful for other members of the committee to know what you feel are the most important issues to address with the draft. You can find a red link to the page where you can write your statement here, along with instructions for doing so.

If you have any questions, just let me know. --Joe Quick 19:29, 19 September 2009 (UTC)

"The Time of the Tribes" by Michel Maffesoli

Martin. I am reading "The Time of the Tribes" by Michel Maffesoli. I have made it to about half-way into the second chapter and am beginning to wonder if it makes sense to continue reading it. I assumed it was a work of sociology, but the narrative wanders all over the place and it comes across more as a work of obscure philosophy than one of scholarship.

Are you familiar with this work or the author? If so, what is your view on either? I have to decide whether to continue slogging through it or to put it on my "decided not to finish" bookshelp. Thanks. Dan Nessett 19:16, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

I must confess that I know neither the work nor the author, so I am not able to comment. Is it about contemporary issues or historical? Martin Baldwin-Edwards 19:57, 6 October 2009 (UTC)
Contemporary. His thesis appears to be that the age of individualism is over and society is organizing itself into "tribes", in which individual identity is merged into the "emotional community." It is hard to follow his arguments, which may partially be due to the fact that I am reading an English translation of the original French. The backcover says he is Professor of Sociology at the Centre d'Etudes sur l'Actuel et le Quotidien, UER de Sciences Sociales, Paris. I have no idea whether this is a legitimate academic institution or some self accredited collection of esoteric seekers. Dan Nessett 20:12, 6 October 2009 (UTC)
I did a quick search. He is indeed in a proper university, but all of his appointments (as professor, to the national research bodies of France, etc) were denounced by the scientific community. His appointment to CNRS (a reputable national institute I have worked with) elicited this response:

… il est pour le moins étonnant de voir nommer comme représentant des disciplines « Homme et Société » Michel Maffesoli, un universitaire bien connu pour ses prises de position anti-rationalistes et anti-scientifiques.

... It is somewhat surprising to see appointed as representative of the disciplines "Man and Society" Michel Maffesoli, an academic well known for his anti-rationalist and anti-scientific position.

Martin Baldwin-Edwards 20:42, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

Thanks. That is something of a relief. I can now put this very confusing book on my "decided not to read" bookshelf. Dan Nessett 21:10, 6 October 2009 (UTC)
Please realize I am smiling with both of you, not at you, but I'm reminded a bit of the kerfluffle over Ayn Rand as a philosopher, and the immense discussion thereof. Howard C. Berkowitz 21:08, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

I found a review in the Canadian Journal of Sociology. The reviewer drew a positive but not glowing picture. It was too heavily postmodernist for him. --Joe Quick 21:15, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

I am surprised the reviewer even finished the book (I supposed he was either paid to do so or required by professionalism). It reads like the author was on drugs when he wrote it. Dan Nessett 21:45, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

Ah, that's postmodernism for you: hallucinations without the cost and risk of drugs :-) Martin Baldwin-Edwards 22:14, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

Has Dan made the immensely useful suggestion of a workgroup or page, Books not to start? It presumably has subgroups for "believable unless you know something about the subject". Howard C. Berkowitz 22:34, 6 October 2009 (UTC)
I have a category of "books not to finish". IN this is another French book -- "L'être et le néant" by Jean-Paul Sartre. I think I got to page 21 and decided it was all too much trouble :-) Martin Baldwin-Edwards 23:16, 6 October 2009 (UTC)
There is much similarity between post-modernism and existentialism. In fact, one view of the former is it is the heir of the later. Dan Nessett 23:22, 6 October 2009 (UTC)

Please look at this thread

Martin, this thread might be worth bringing to the attention of the charter drafting committee. See here Milton Beychok 02:20, 4 November 2009 (UTC)


Hi--dropping you a note because I just sent e-mail and one of your addresses bounced, so I don't know if it went through. Hope you're well. Aleta Curry 00:00, 20 January 2010 (UTC)

Proposed article "History of U.S. citizenship"

Hi Martin, Howard Berkowitz suggested I might consult with you about a possible article for CZ. I've been a Wikipedia contributor but recently switched over. Wondering if you have any interest in this topic and what your thinking is? The article is in a sandbox: User talk:Thomas Wright Sulcer/sandbox2. If interested wondering your opinion, or do you know who else here on CZ might be interested in giving it a look-over before approving it for going online?--Thomas Wright Sulcer 19:24, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

The gist of the article is this: U.S. citizenship transformed from a mostly political relationship (ie participation in town hall meetings circa 1640s) to an economic relationship (consumers, workers, investors uninterested in politics). So the article tries to show how political -> economic transformation happened. It's based on civics and history books, some academics, political philosophers (eg Tocqueville), contemporary writers (Wolf, Kaplan etc), but basically it's trying to be like a high school civics primer. While most history as you know is about a country or a person but in this case it's the history of a relationship -- citizenship, so it's somewhat different from most histories. I hope it's not too boring so I tried to include lots of pictures. One of my biases is that I think citizenship is important but I realize most Americans don't even bother to think much about it. I tried to include contrasting points of view -- writers like Ginsberg feel that citizenship decline (ie political participation) is not good, while writers like Kaplan think it's no big woof as long as there are jobs and money. Wondering what you think or what I might do next.--Thomas Wright Sulcer 05:05, 18 February 2010 (UTC)--Thomas Wright Sulcer 19:24, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Hi. I had a quick read-through, and found it interesting. My only worry is that precisely because it is so analytical, it might be perceived as original research or an opinion piece, or suchlike. Possibly there is a way to handle this -- but I need to think about it a bit. It's also relatively long, so could be split up into smaller articles or even use the CZ cluster facility to link different parts of it to one main article. So, for example, the main article could simply chart fairly factual changes in US citizenship history; another one could discuss different approaches to the idea of citizenship; yet another could look specifically at legal or political aspects, etc. These are just some thoughts, nothing properly thought through. For the moment, can you delay putting it on wiki? See if you have any thoughts along the lines I mentioned. There is also an interesting parallel you might like to make, with T H Marshall's idea of social citizenship in the UK and the reasons for its historical evolution. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 20:49, 18 February 2010 (UTC)
Martin, perhaps you might be able to suggest some titles of articles to derive from this, or relate to it, which could, as neutrally as possible, let me do some things on the intensely political issues of "illegal immigration" in the U.S. I put that in quotes because the specific words are a red flag. "U.S. immigration policy" is too broad, unless it were to state the current, if confused, situation..."U.S. immigration issues"? Ideally, the varied issues of "guest workers", "restricted entry", "undocumented aliens", etc., might be phrased in reasonably internationalized terms. --Howard C. Berkowitz 21:38, 18 February 2010 (UTC)
I'll wait and think. I'll be glad to reorganize/rewrite it along lines you suggest. I don't know how to do the cluster facility. It would be great if this article was superior to Wikipedia's (which I wrote earlier). In the meantime I'll work on other projects such as Philosophy of Spinoza or perhaps import others I did such as "Handyman". I wrote quite a few articles and revamped many more on WP; is there a tool to move them quickly here? Also something weird happens with some of the repeated references. And should I check "Content is from Wikipedia" even if I wrote it initially on WP? Also wondering what the policy is about redlinks (ie wikilinked terms for which there is no corresponding article).--Thomas Wright Sulcer 22:38, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Please look over the work of John Foster

Martin, four days ago, I confirmed the account of John Foster. Since that time, he has created a number of new articles (mostly with content ported from his work at Wikipedia):

I have been able to review, edit/modify/comment on the three about renewable energy and to offer him considerable guidance about porting WP articles and how we format articles in CZ to include subpages.

However. the first four above are more oriented toward Politics and Sociology ... where I am not really qualified to review and comment. As an Editor in those workgroups, would you please review those four and "take him under your wing", so to speak? Regards, Milton Beychok 20:45, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

Will do. Thanks for telling me. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 21:01, 14 May 2010 (UTC)

Trying to get updated Dokdo article approved

Hello. Is it possible for you to look over the article on Dokdo? These are the changes that have been made since its first approval. The main changes were made in the section titled "Propagation worldwide," concerning the dispute in international setting. Thank you! (Chunbum Park 03:10, 17 May 2010 (UTC))OK. I;ll try in the next few days to take a look. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 21:06, 17 May 2010 (UTC)

Ok, thank you. (Chunbum Park 01:20, 15 September 2010 (UTC))

Mulling Options

Wanted to say thanks for seemingly rooting for the newbie. I haven't decided what my options for Citizendium are but I am mulling them over. I do realize that I am not academically qualified and probably not intelligent enough to contribute here leaving me to mull options. Thanks for trying to help. Mary Ash 02:35, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Article naming conventions for cities

Martin, some time ago you added a section to CZ:Naming Conventions regarding geographical names. As we seem to have no truly active Geography editors, let me pose this question to you. Do you know of a naming convention for cities? We have articles on "Los Angeles" [Calif.], "San Diego" [Calif.], and "Birmingham" [UK], with only the city name in the title; but also "Annapolis, Maryland" and "Bletchley, England", with a country or state name in the title (even though neither of those two examples would seem to need the disambiguation).

Wikipedia, in , seems to have a flexible rule, and in practice, we seem to be following something similar -- the title should contain not only the city name but also some disambiguating term like a country/province/state name, even when disambiguation is not strictly necessary, except for the largest or best-known cities (such as London or New York). Does this seem to be what we are and/or should be doing? Thanks.

Bruce M. Tindall 16:45, 10 September 2010 (UTC)

Well, we never did complete the Naming Conventions guidelines. Maybe i should look at them again. Is there a specific reason why you are asking me about it? My initial reaction is to suggest that things should be as simple as possible. Thus, although there is more than one London in the world, someone cearching for London is probably looking for the city in England. Thus, it might make sense to have articles such as "London" and "london, Ontario". On the other hand, we could just specify that all cities need a locator fot disambiguation, requiring the title "London, England". I need to think about it, and maybe it should be put on the Forums.Martin Baldwin-Edwards 17:29, 10 September 2010 (UTC)

What set me off today was an article called "Detroit, Michigan", which contains a link to the (misspelled) "Winsor, Canada", and I was wondering if I ought to change that to "Windsor, Ontario" or what. I assume that there will eventually be a disambiguation page with such items as "Windsor, England - see Where Brenda Keeps Her Art"; "Windsor, Duke of - see Spode, Roderick," etc. Bruce M. Tindall 20:32, 10 September 2010 (UTC)
Hmm ok. The big question is whether the disambiguation should be by country or by locale. In other words, should it be Windsor, Ontario or Windsor, Canada. The latter sounds odd to me, although so does Windsor, England... Perhaps for the time being you could change it to the locale until we decide on a policy. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 22:33, 10 September 2010 (UTC)

Saw Your Tea Party Post Please Don't Quit

Martin I was just checking the Tea Party page and saw your comments. Please, please don't quit. I need you. CZ needs you. Please reconsider. BTW I am reading your PDF file you so kindly sent. It's been a busy weekend and then I've been having computer troubles. I'm on the Mac writing this post as the kids are running diagnostics to find out why the kernel quit on my PC laptop. I beg you please reconsider. Mary Ash 22:07, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Saw your comments about my agreeing to capitalization concerning Tea Party. FYI it's common practice in the newspaper business to opt for what the person/group/organization wants to call themselves unless there is something other to clarify the proper usage. In this case, the Tea Party prefers to be called the Tea Party Movement and NPR has obliged. Until CZ comes up with a guideline for this matter, I'd stick with what the groups wants to be known as, as a courtesy to the group involved. While I may not be a political science major, I do have a minor in history and I have paid professional experience covering local politics. This means I was paid for my political experience which makes me a professional concerning political converge. As I wrote above please reconsider CZ it seems to be a sinking ship. Please don't give up. Mary Ash 22:16, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
Mary, thank you for your kind message! I don't have any problem with your comments, and I understand the logic. I am taking the view that legal names along with academic usage take priority, unless there is a such a standard practice in the "real world" to use a capitalisation. I have no intention of quitting CZ, don't worry! These fighrs with Howard are a regular occurrence. Thanks for your support :-) Martin Baldwin-Edwards 22:31, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

British things

I have just started British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies and would appreciate your input/rewrites/additions etc. for these topics, as they are the sort of thing that everyone gets wrong all the time. Thanks! John Stephenson 03:56, 10 October 2010 (UTC)

Certainly. These are legally and politically quite complex, so I am glad to help. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 11:15, 10 October 2010 (UTC)
Another one I've started and would like to tip you off about is fingerprinting - thanks. John Stephenson 08:31, 13 October 2010 (UTC)
I'll see if there is anything I can add. Probably something about EURODAC would be helpful for the article, since it is the European agency for this. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 15:24, 13 October 2010 (UTC)

Going cold turkey

Hi, Martin, could you take a look at: and offer your considered opinion when you have a moment? Many thanks! Hayford Peirce 22:03, 19 October 2010 (UTC)

Take a look at Tony Blair

Martin: Please have a look at Tony Blair and say whether you consider it to be fit for approval Nick Gardner 21:26, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

New Politics author

Martin, we have just been joined by Levan Ramishvili of Georgia as a new politics author. You may wish to post a welcome message on his Talk page. Milton Beychok 03:42, 20 November 2010 (UTC)

Thanks, Milt: I will do so now. Martin Baldwin-Edwards 03:48, 20 November 2010 (UTC)

Qatar Flag

Was there anything wrong with my qatar flag upload, other than the color being wrong? Was this not an appropriate application of "fair use"? Eric Clevinger 04:21, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

Re: Not at all! I just have been busy with other things. I'm glad you answered my questions! Eric Clevinger 18:55, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

Financial Report as of March 15, 2011

Please read our Financial Report as of March 15, 2001 for complete details on our financial history and our current financial situation. If you have any questions, please ask them on CZ Talk:Donate. Milton Beychok 00:31, 18 March 2011 (UTC)