Public meetings

505 Wine RoomRationalist Think Tank

The RSA holds monthly meetings (at this stage, only in Melbourne) for Members and others interested in discussing contemporary issues from a rationalist perspective.

Meetings are held from 6pm on the second Monday of each month at the 505 Wine Room on the corner of Williams Road and Malvern Road, Hawksburn.  Just 7 mins walk from the Hawksburn station and on the 72 tram line.

WhenWhatDiscussion
8 MayRationalist Naming Ceremony
10 AprilGovernment funding of the arts
13 MarchNudity
13 FebruaryDivision of TimeThe world uses a long established calendar of months with varying number of days, weeks of seven days which don't fit with the months, and seasons which are only a broad guide to the weather.

Days are a useful period to divide time as it is set by the earth's rotation. Years are also useful being set by the earth's orbit around the sun. It is proposed to designate days only by year and numbered days.

Days are currently divided into hours, minutes and seconds using the numbers 24, 60 and 60. Whilst 24 and 60 are numbers which can be conveniently divided, multiplication and addition are difficult.

It is proposed to decimalise the division of time within days to 10 (new) hours, 100 (new ) minutes and 100 (new) seconds.

The world has a number of time zones developed in an attempt to align time readings with daylight in all parts of the world. The fact is that as the earth orbits the sun, when the sun comes into view and when it sets constantly changes. Attempts to correct this by adjusting clocks to “daylight saving” further complicate communications between time zones. As information flow around the world increases and more organisations become always open, the advantage of local time providing guidance as to where daylight is decreases and the advantage of not needing to convert to other time zones increases. It is proposed that time throughout the world be standardised.

It is proposed to change to the new system at 12 noon Eastern Australian Standard Time on 1st Jan 2020. So 12 o'clock (1200 hrs.) 01/01/2020 here, or whatever the time is locally elsewhere, would become 2020.001.0.00.00, where the first four numbers represent the year, the next three the day of the year, the next the new hour, the next two the new minutes and the last two the new seconds.

It is suggested both systems be quoted for appointments etc. for one year before and one year after the designated time of change.
9 JanuaryDrug Law Reform1. Should personal use and possession of small quantities of marijuana be decriminalised?
Would this result in a decreased or an increased in use?

2. Should other drugs also be decriminalised?

3. Do we support setting up pill testing stations at music festivals and perhaps other venues? How should the cost be meet? How would they operate and is there a danger of mistakes? Will the testing of pills on site increase use?

4. Are supervised injecting rooms a good idea?
Meetings held in 2016
12 DecemberDriverless carsRead report here
14 NovemberRights and ResponsibilitiesRead report here
10 OctoberImproving 18C and 18D of the Racial Discrimination ActRead report here
12 SeptemberFederal vs State responsibilitiesRead report here
8 AugustWorld homo sapiens populationRead report here.
11 JulyEuthanasiaRead report here
13 JuneAbortionRead report here
9 MayAustralia's place in the worldRead report here

Information for first time attendees

The Rationalist Think Tank meets on the 2nd Monday of each month at 505 Wine Bar (previously the Hawksburn Hotel) on the corner of Malvern and Williams Rds in Hawksburn. If coming by car you can park in the car park behind Woolworths, off Malvern Rd to the east of the hotel. The no. 72 tram passes by the venue and the Hawksburn railway station is nearby.

Guests should arrive at 6pm and go up to the first floor function room.

The hotel staff collect our meal orders and bring the meals up. You buy your drinks and pay for your meal downstairs. Allow $30 for a meal and drink. There are toilets upstairs. When you arrive you will be issued a name tag. Please introduce yourself to the other guests.

Seating is not allocated - just find a table to sit at.

The group at each table discusses and endeavours to reach a consensus on questions set for the evening’s topic. It will help if you come with some initial thoughts on the subject. Tables appoint a person to facilitate the discussion and someone to record and report the group's deliberations.

The formal evening concludes around 9pm.

If you are planning to attend, it will assist the organizer if you let us on “thinktank@rationalist.com.au” by the Thursday before so we can notify the hotel of the expected numbers.

If you are unable to attend but would like to contribute you can send an email with your comments or answers for consideration on the night.

You can also register via “Meetup.com”. To use this system go to Meetup.com and search for our group by putting "rationalist" in the search box.  By signing up, you will be able see information on future meetings, introductions and lists of questions.

You can make comments or comment on comments and see who else is in our group and coming to a meeting. You can RSVP yourself and up to one guest.

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