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Friday, June 12, 2015

Links - 12th June 2015

Hillary’s Constitutional Aversion to Criticism - WSJ - "Progressivism’s ever-tightening grip on the Democratic Party is on full display in Hillary Clinton’s presidential platform. Starting with her kickoff speech in Iowa, and in subsequent venues across the country, she spoke of her campaign’s “four fights,” one of which is a constitutional amendment on campaign finance. This marks Mrs. Clinton as an adherent to one of the newest and most fervently held tenets of modern progressive teaching: Citizens United v. FEC is an evil that must be destroyed at any cost... The justices struck down this prohibition, ruling that “the First Amendment protects political speech.” Chief Justice John Roberts was even more blunt, arguing that such bans subvert “the vibrant public discourse that is at the foundation of our democracy.” There was a time when most Americans agreed with this logic. The American Founding was partially triggered by the Stamp Act, which squelched speech by mandating that publications possess a stamp purchased from the British government. Following the Revolution and the ratification of the Constitution, the first Congress wisely passed the First Amendment to prevent politicians from banning speech that criticizes officeholders. Throughout American history, this constitutional guarantee of free speech has been the bulwark of the country’s experiment in self-government. Yet this consensus disappeared following Citizens United. The Democratic Party’s leadership, fearing the electoral losses that ultimately came to pass, called for a crusade to undo the Supreme Court’s decision. Their holy war found its fullest expression in the demand for a constitutional amendment that would, in essence, repeal the First Amendment."

Take off that Fitbit. Exercise alone won’t make you lose weight. - "Physical activity has a multitude of health benefits — it reduces the risk of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and possibly even cancer — but weight loss is not one of them."

Share price of South Korea's biggest condom maker surges after court decriminalises adultery - "The law had been enacted in 1953 to protect women in a male-dominated society where divorce was rare and had made marital infidelity punishable by jail."

Supreme Court gay marriage arguments: The 8 most awkward moments - "1. Arguing that animosity or prejudice might not be motivation for same-sex marriage bans, Justice Samuel Alito notes that not all cultures that historically rejected same-sex marriage were hostile to gays
2. Alito asks whether, if states are forced to recognize gay marriage, they could hold the line against (for lack of a better term) two-on-two marriage
4. Alito raises yet another potential human pairing, that of unmarried siblings, asking if a state could bar them from marrying
6. So-called plural marriage arises again, with Scalia asking if states could choose not to recognize a polygamous marriage solemnized overseas
7. As the justices debated when states could ignore other states’ marriages, Alito asked if a state would be compelled to recognize the marriage of a pre-teen just because another state did
8. The exchange led Justice Sonia Sotomayor to bring up another marriage restriction — limits on marrying relatives — and asked whether a state could ignore a marriage another state authorized between two cousins who are related only by other relatives’ marriage and not by blood. That discussion eventually turned to one of inces"

Is Al Jazeera Sexist, Anti-Semitic, and Anti-American? - "The lawsuit contends: “As an employee at AJAM, Mr. Mahmud’s discriminatory conduct included, but was not limited to, removing female employees from projects to which they had been previously assigned by other management level employees, excluding women from emails and meetings relevant to their assignments, and making discriminatory, anti-Semitic and anti-American remarks such as ‘whoever supports Israel should die a fiery death in hell.’ ” [Emphasis in the original.] A screen grab of another incendiary comment, allegedly posted by Mahmud on his Facebook page—which apparently has been scrubbed or made private in recent days—has also been making the rounds among colleagues, detractors and media reporters, along with concerned AJAM execs.
“The enemies of Muslims in Egypt, their puppets and blind supporters are due to face death in the hospitals and streets of Egypt, starting from this evil man,” reads the comment, time-stamped July 29, 2014 at 2:32 a.m., apparently a reference to Egyptian television presenter and Muslim Brotherhood opponent Tawfik Okasha.
It’s hardly the sort of sentiment one expects from a senior manager of a journalistic organization."

Getting an Aussie skilled migrant visa can take years

Ayushi Mona's answer to Do women objectify men? - Quora - "In literature and cinema, geared towards women, the men are never:
Unattractive (even scarred military heroes have some je ne sais quoi about them).
Mean bad boys; they are always up for reforming."

For Asian Americans, a changing landscape on college admissions - "Lee is the co-founder of HS2 Academy, a college prep business that assumes that racial bias is a fact of college admissions and counsels students accordingly. At 10 centers across the state, the academy's counselors teach countermeasures to Asian American applicants. The goal, Lee says, is to help prospective college students avoid coming off like another “cookie-cutter Asian.” “Everyone is in orchestra and plays piano,” Lee says. “Everyone plays tennis. Everyone wants to be a doctor, and write about immigrating to America. You can't get in with these cliche applications.”

▶ International Women's Day & Daylight Savings Time - conspiracy of the Patriarchy????? - YouTube

Learning From Mistakes - - " if there were no World War II, you wouldn’t have had the infusion of women into the work force. You wouldn’t have had the G.I. Bill and the rapid expansion of higher education. You wouldn’t have had the pacification of Europe, Pax-Americana, which led to decades of peace and prosperity, or the end of the British and other empires. History is an infinitely complex web of causations. To erase mistakes from the past is to obliterate your world now. You can’t go back and know then what you know now. You can’t step in the same river twice... There’s a fable going around now that the intelligence about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction was all cooked by political pressure, that there was a big political conspiracy to lie us into war.That doesn’t gibe with the facts. Anybody conversant with the Robb-Silberman report from 2005 knows that this was a case of human fallibility. This exhaustive, bipartisan commission found “a major intelligence failure”"

Kirsten Powers on Obama's Attempt to 'Delegitimize' Fox News - ""It goes without saying that if George Bush had done this, he would have been Hitler"... Fox News isn’t alone. For years, the White House has resorted to bullying tactics and withholding information. It has prompted complaints from prominent journalists and the White House Correspondents Association... she came to see conservatives as the most ardent defenders of free speech—welcoming debate rather than attempting to stifle it like many liberals in media and academia... “I don’t understand this idea that people need to be pushed out of jobs and the public square for disagreeing with you on one issue”"

NYT reporter: Obama administration ‘the greatest enemy of press freedom’ in a generation - "New York Times reporter James Risen called the Obama administration “the greatest enemy of press freedom that we have encountered in at least a generation” on Friday, explaining that the White House seeks to control the flow of information and those who refuse to play along “will be punished.”"

Bahar Mustafa: Goldsmiths diversity officer could lose job after tweeting hashtag 'kill all white men' - "Bahar Mustafa, the university union's welfare and diversity officer, caught the media's attention after telling white people and men not to come to an event about diversifying the curriculum. She then defended her position on camera, saying ethnic minority women cannot be racist as they "do not stand to gain" from inequality... "The current welfare and diversity officer has used hate speech based on race and gender," the union petition, which closes on May 26, reads. "For example, the consistent use of hashtags such as #killallwhitemen and #misandry, and publicly calling someone 'white trash' under the official GSU Welfare and Diversity Officer Twitter account"... Ms Mustafa said the use of the term "white trash" - an offensive American term referring to poor white people following the Great Depression - on an official account had been "not professional". But she added the uses of hashtags such as "kill all white men" on her personal account were "in-jokes and ways that many people in the queer feminist community express ourselves". "It's a way of reclaiming the power from the trauma many of us experience as queers, women, people of colour, who are on the receiving end of racism, misogyny and homophobia daily""
Being racist and sexist is a way of recovering from "trauma"?

The new Gamergate: Angry white men are trying to shut down diverse comics
Comments: "Thor, however, is the actual real name of the character, and not a persona. It would be like making a female Bruce Banner.It makes no sense..why not just promote a female Asgardian that already exists, like Lady Sif, instead of making a male character with a male name into a female character, nonsensically?"
"1# It's not an angry white guy issue,it's a poor writing issue... Absorbing man blatantly represented "the dude bros" and female Thor was the caricature of feminism putting those "nasty sexist men" in their places. In that instant they ceased to become people and just became symbols pushing an ideological slant. Sorry,but that's NOT good or clever narrative. It might as well be those terrible Christian themed Chic comics.(Remember kids, Dungeons & Dragons leads to witch-craft!)...
3# This is written like you WANT to stir some trouble. Why do you have to use the word "White" with such disdain? Furthermore, why do you deny the very existence of #notyourshield,a sub-sect of #gamergate composed entirely of lgbts,minorities,and the disabled?"

Ian McEwan Gives Impassioned Graduation Address On Free Speech - ""It can be a little too easy sometimes to dismiss arguments you don’t like as hate speech or to complain that this or that speaker makes you feel disrespected," McEwan said. "Being offended is not to be confused with a state of grace; it’s the occasional price we all pay for living in an open society.""

Protesting The Commencement Speaker Is All The Rage These Days - ""The irony," said Wilde, "is that for most graduates, if you can remember who your commencement speaker was it's a miracle. And if you can remember what they said, that's really extraordinary.""
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