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Saturday, October 25, 2014

Links - 25th October 2014

Telegraph Journalist Accuses World Health Organisation of Gay Stereotyping - "The World Health Organisation (WHO) has been accused of promoting gay stereotyping following it’s report published last week, which urged gay men to use antiretroviral drugs as an additional method of HIV prevention."
Apparently it's better to let gay men die than to 'stereotype' them

Israel, Hamas, WhatsApp And Hacked Phones in the Gaza Psy-War - "Liron Shamam, a popular anchor on Israel’s most-watched morning news show, was sitting in her apartment in Tel Aviv, wondering what it must be like for those living in Gaza. So she embarked on a quest to find her Palestinian doppelganger. “I was so sad and depressed,” she said. “I couldn’t help but think there must be someone in Gaza, sitting in their apartment wondering the same thing about me.” Minutes after posting a message on Facebook, she was talking to a Palestinian journalist in Gaza. But the conversation was cut short when the man on the other end of the line had to run to the shelter. “Before he hung up, I told him, ‘be safe!’ and he wished me the same.” Ironically, rockets began flying over Shamam’s apartment in Tel Aviv that very moment. The symmetry of their experiences only made her more determined to continue her journey. “I remember thinking, this is fucked up.”"

Lawrence Kurniawan's answer to Why are women so negative about the "picking up women" school of thought? - Quora - "the rabbit hole goes really deep and some women have only tasted the breadcrumbs the old rabbits left behind. Suffice to say they didn't like the mould... What you read from Neil Strauss's The Game is old and just the tip of the iceberg. I'm guessing that some women didn't like pick-up because of some techniques advocated there (like negging) and the objectification of women, amongst other things. I agree that they are horrible, but they don't represent the whole pick-up field. To say that pick-up is nasty because of that is akin to hating Biology because you think cloning is immoral... Does pick-up benefit women?
Yes, in many ways.
1. Many things taught in pick-up are actually androgynous. They are transferable to life in general and business, especially networking. It teaches you how to read people better, connect with strangers, take calculated risk, act despite fear, be a better person and the list goes on.
2. More men with better dating skills mean you will have better love life and better selections.
Every good things in this world can be used for bad purposes, pick-up is no exception."

Prostitution Law Canada: Should Bill C-36 Debate Hear From Johns? - "Atchison says that what's missing from the new law is a basic understanding of how many johns there are in Canada and what motivates them to buy sex. He says the best comparative numbers are from Britain, New Zealand and Australia, where four to seven per cent of the male population have purchased sex. "[But for Canada] there is no indication at the broader level. Which then begs the question, how is it that we can have this legislation that has been proposed to address a problem when nobody knows the magnitude of the so-called problem." In his research, Atchison has spoken to "literally thousands" of men who bought sex. The act itself is the main reason they visit prostitutes, but it is not the only one. Johns have told him they want companionship, conversation, physical touch. Some are handicapped or suffering from degenerative diseases that leave them paralyzed. Perhaps most surprising, there are johns who have long-term connections with a sex provider that in some cases last for years. They are what he calls "pseudo-monogamous relationships." In a recent interview on CBC Radio's The 180, James Rodney admitted to having been a regular user of sexual services in the 1990s. He was working at a fly-in job in a remote area of Canada and didn't feel having a one-night stand was fair to the woman... John Lowman, a criminologist at Simon Fraser University who has studied prostitution and the law since 1977, thinks Section 15 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms — equality rights — will get a workout this time around. He explains that the proposed law would allow a woman to sell sex without fear of prosecution. "Then the full weight of the law can be brought against the man who buys those sexual services. It is institutionalized, state-sponsored entrapment," he says. On top of that, argues Lowman, this approach will just put prostitutes at as much risk of violence as they were under the old regime — the exact opposite of what this law is supposed to do. "I think that [abolitionists] are quite prepared to sacrifice sex sellers in the name of their particular ideology, which is about creating what they think is an equal society by abolishing prostitution," says Lowman."

'Inventing Wine': The History Of A Very Vintage Beverage - "People would add a variety of unexpected ingredients to obscure and enhance the flavor. Everything, Lukacs says, "from lead to ash to myrrh to various kinds of incense, spices. And the most common thing added, especially to wines that people valued, were fresh resin from pine trees or boiled resin — namely pitch — from pine trees. Lead, in fact, will sweeten wine, so lead was used for thousands and thousands of years." The book is filled with surprising facts about the drink. Pharaohs have been buried beside jugs of it. The Quran promises baths of wine in the afterlife because here on Earth, humans are too weak not to succumb to its temptations. In World War I, France sent bottles of wine to its troops to help fortify them against the horrors they were experiencing in the trenches."

Coffee and qahwa: How a drink for Arab mystics went global - "In Mecca, Cairo and Istanbul attempts were made to ban it by religious authorities. Learned shaykhs discussed whether the effects of coffee were similar to those of alcohol, and some remarked that passing round the coffee pot had something in common with the circulation of a pitcher of wine, a drink forbidden in Islam. Coffee houses were a new institution in which men met together to talk, listen to poets and play games like chess and backgammon. They became a focus for intellectual life and could be seen as an implicit rival to the mosque as a meeting place. Some scholars opined that the coffee house was "even worse than the wine room", and the authorities noted how these places could easily become dens of sedition. However, all attempts at banning coffee failed, even though the death penalty was used during the reign of Murad IV (1623-40). The religious scholars eventually came to a sensible consensus that coffee was, in principle, permissible."

SCIENCE: WHY EUNUCHS DON'T WEAR TOUPEES - "If you don't fancy drugs, surgery or resignation, Dr Nilofer Farjo, Harley Street surgeon and expert in balding treatments, suggests the only other way to prevent pattern balding is castration. "A bit drastic but eunuchs don't go bald," she notes." Andy Bryant, director of Natural Hair Products, begs to disagree. Having saved his own head of hair with no loss of body parts, he now advises up to 1,500 people a year on lifestyle changes which he says can slow hair loss and give measurable regrowth. His prescription is simple: reduce stress, reduce or cut out tea, coffee, alcohol and high sugar foods. All, he argues, increase stress hormones such as adrenalin and prolactin which increase levels of testosterone and consequently DHT. "If you stabilise the over-reaction of the adrenal glands, the rate of hair loss slows quickly," says Bryant, who is convinced that whatever the genetic background, levels of circulating DHT are the key. In countries where tea, coffee, alcohol and sugar consumption is low, he notes, pattern baldness is less prevalent, as is prostate cancer. When Japanese men move to the US, their rate of prostate cancer increases three to five times, and Japanese researchers, who believe consumption of more animal fat is giving Japanese men increasingly greasy scalps have also reported a link between excessive oil in the scalp and hair loss... Medical experts tend to dismiss lifestyle approaches, arguing that changing diet or reducing stress won't change hair follicles genetically programmed to fail. But the strains of modern life could explain a phenomenon clearly identified by both medics and alternative proponents. And that is that men are balding earlier... Being licked by a cow may work - the chemicals in cow saliva may stimulate growth factors in the scalp."

Marion Cotillard justifie son (mauvais) jeu d'actrice: une stratégie douteuse - "elle conclut : "Quand je n’aime pas le réalisateur et le tournage, je suis mauvaise à l’écran." Risée du grand public, Cotillard semble avoir trouvé ici une occasion de se justifier auprès de ses pairs. Le fait qu'elle ne place pas Nolan dans les réalisateurs qu'elle admire, alors qu'il l'a dirigé dans deux énormes succès, laisse apparaître en filigrane une critique envers sa direction d'acteurs. En effet, pointée du doigt pour la médiocrité de son jeu dans "The Dark Knight Rises", elle souligne ici le fait que l'origine du problème est toujours dû à son lien avec le réalisateur."

Five Reasons China Won't Be A Big Threat To America's Global Power

Why Have Female Hurricanes Killed More People Than Male Ones? – Phenomena: Not Exactly Rocket Science - "Jung team thinks that the effect he found is due to unfortunate stereotypes that link men with strength and aggression, and women with warmth and passivity. Thanks to these biases, people might take greater precautions to protect themselves from Hurricane Victor, while reacting more apathetically to Hurricane Victoria. “These kinds of implicit biases routinely affect the way actual men and women are judged in society,” says Sharon Shavitt, who helped to design the study. “It appears that these gender biases can have deadly consequences.” But Jeff Lazo from the National Centre for Atmospheric Research disagrees. He’s a social scientist and economist who has looked into the public communication of hurricane risk, and he thinks the pattern is most likely a statistical fluke, which arose because of the ways in which the team analysed their data."
Ahh... feminist research!

Trans activists really need to lighten up - "There must be some reason why the trans community, as it calls itself, is worse at taking criticism or tolerating insulting commentary than, say, the Christian community or the butch lesbian community, both of which also get flak on the internet and elsewhere but don’t tend to respond to it in the way trans types do... When I wrote a piece arguing that Bradley Manning is not a woman, despite his claims to the contrary, I was bombarded with suggestions that I should kill myself. This from trans activists who (ludicrously) held Daily Mail columnist Richard Littlejohn responsible for the suicide of a trans schoolteacher and said the media must be careful never to criticise this community lest its members feel tempted to kill themselves... Some groups seem more capable of riding out criticism than others. Yes, Christian outfits play the victim card and bleat to officialdom about feeling offended by an ad or an article, but mostly they just ignore web-based Christian-bashing, which is voluminous. Islamists are more sensitive, hollering for beheadings whenever someone mocks Muhammad or says the Koran is cobblers. And the trans lobby is even more sensitive than that, reacting with censorious anger not only to insults but also to people’s allegedly incorrect use of language, to being called ‘a transsexual’, for example, rather than ‘a member of the trans community’. They even picket the offices of newspapers that have the temerity to piss them off. Why the extraordinary touchiness? I think it reflects the fundamental flimsiness of the trans identity, the fragility of this so-called community... this is a ‘community’ so sadly uncertain of its own claims, so instinctively aware of the largely phoney nature of its arguments, that it must protect itself from any form of public ridicule or questioning lest its facade be knocked down."
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