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Valar Qringaomis

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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Links - 10th August 2016

If women want to equal men, they must change their notion of happiness - "Hoiking men from public life at a moment’s notice for being unable to give completely 100 per cent satisfactory answers on head-bangingly complex gender issues does not, I fear, help women’s road to equality. It makes us look like a sinister, peculiarly thin-skinned, laughably volatile Lidl-brand Stazi... I find it ironic that it is women, not men, who propel the cult of motherhood and who the spread the frightening notion that life will never, ever be truly complete without a baby, and that no career plaudit can compare. Then, as women fall like dominoes after their mid-twenties, quitting the race to the top in droves, regurgitating this same self-placating idea that "smiles on little faces" make up for power, prestige and big bucks, we want Kevin Roberts fired for cheerfully agreeing with us... Maintaining the top position in almost all corporate and artistic fields requires 18 hours a day, six-and-a-half days a week unyielding focus. It requires boring dinners, foreign business travel, legal wrangles, endless hiring and firing. It requires going to work and everyone disliking you, but then fretting all night that their livelihoods and children’s potential empty bellies depend on you. Your own child or ageing mother will be way down on your list of priorities. For decades men have grabbed this poisoned chalice. It has made them happy. If women want to equal men in top roles, they must change their notion of "happiness" too"
"Patriarchy" means you get fired if you say something anti-feminist

Suspended for sins against feminism - "Publicis values diversity and inclusion so much that it will not tolerate diversity or inclusion of political opinion in the workplace... Business Insider reported that in the advertising industry, only 11.5 per cent of women are creative directors, which means that there is something stopping women from taking big roles in that sector. It could be because of pressures outside the workplace, or it could be because lots of people don’t want a career that consumes all their time. But one thing is for sure – given the current appetite for shaming old white men, it is highly unlikely that women are being stopped from achieving by sexist bosses. The crazy thing about this whole debacle is that Roberts’ comments don’t actually harm women... Gallop and her feminist supporters however, are undermining women’s freedom. In their assertion that women need a leg-up in the workplace, they paint women as incapable of being independent agents in the world. Gallop and other proponents of gender equality believe that women are incapable of forging their own destinies"

As an Arab, the Middle East's reaction to Orlando left me speechless… - Arab Humanists العرب الإنسانويون - "As a bilingual Arabic and English speaker from the Middle East, I took the liberty of browsing through Arabic news pages on Facebook earlier today; namely Al Jazeera, Al-Arabiya, BBC Arabic and a number of Egyptian news outlets to gauge how the Arab world was responding to the Orlando shooting. The results were disappointing, alarming, and depressing to say the least. Each page’s comment section was inundated with comments showing sympathy towards the attacker, praising him for his actions and wishing death upon members of the international LGBT community. Comments ranged from jokes about the incident and how “the gays had it coming,” to long du’as (religious supplications), wishing death upon gays and lesbians, as well as asking God to grant the killer “the highest place in paradise.” I considered collecting screenshots of these comments to raise awareness about the amount of hatred towards the gay community in the Middle East, but it soon dawned on me that such a task would be impossible. There were simply too many hateful comments, with thousands celebrating the attack, from Tunisia to Egypt, Iraq and Saudi Arabia. It was only through deep digging that a single person who expressed so much as a shred of sympathy to the victims and their families, or even condemned the blatant massacre that took place could be found. If you don’t speak Arabic, visit Al Jazeera Arabic’s Facebook page and scroll down until you see a post about the Orlando attack and note what the top three “reactions” (newly added Facebook feature) are... It has now become commonplace in the Arab world to wish death upon minorities and celebrate their murders. Gays, Christians, Jews, atheists, apostates, heterodox Muslims, liberal Muslims, and secularists are seen as subhuman. Celebrating their deaths is now a norm... Members of the left who claim such terrorism has nothing to do with Islam need to become aware of the issue at hand that is Islamism, and understand the ramifications of evading discussions on it."

As ISIS brutalizes women, a pathetic feminist silence - "The upcoming annual conference of the National Organization for Women does not list ISIS or Boko Haram on its agenda. While the most recent Women’s Studies annual conference did focus on foreign policy, they were only interested in Palestine, a country which has never existed, and support for which is often synonymous with an anti-Israel position. Privately, feminists favor non-intervention, non-violence and the need for multilateral action, and they blame America for practically everything wrong in the world."

Orthodox Jews Can't Protest Parade, Hire Mexicans Instead - "A group of Orthodox Jews hired Mexican day laborers to dress in traditional Jewish garb and protest against the New York City gay pride parade Sunday... “The rabbis said that the yeshiva boys shouldn’t come out for this because of what they would see at the parade”"

Confucius on Gay Marriage - "Chinese parents and society as a whole put intense pressure on young people to marry and produce offspring. According to one estimate, 90 percent of gay men in China marry women, often without telling them their actual sexual orientation. Understandably, this can lead to frustration, adultery, and unhappiness. This emphasis on producing children can be traced in part to the Confucian tradition. Mencius, one of the most influential Confucian philosophers of all time, argued that to fail to have children is the most unfilial of all acts. Consequently, the online edition of The People’s Daily, a source with close ties to the Chinese government, claimed that Chinese were “baffled” by Kennedy’s use of Confucius. Professor Zeng Yi of the Philosophy Department of Tongji University was blunter, stating that Kennedy had “distorted” Confucius, and opining that any Confucian should view homosexuality as “a crime against humanity.” Critics like Zeng point out that the Classic of Changes, a seminal Confucian treatise of divination and cosmology, claims that traditional gender identities are an immutable reflection of cosmic principles."

Tracing the Sharks’ Fin – From Ocean to Wedding plate - "You have been lied to and mis­led all this time. I kid you not. You’ve al­ways thought that the fins you’ve been eat­ing at wed­ding din­ners were forcibly re­moved from a group of sharks be­fore these sharks are thrown back into the ocean, still alive, only to slowly bleed to death? That story is as true as the tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. “Most of the videos that you see are ei­ther re­ally old footage, we’re talk­ing 10 to 15 years ago, or de­lib­er­ately con­strued. The en­vi­ron­men­tal­ists pay a poor fish­er­man from the Philip­pines to rip the fin off from the shark so that they can film it,” de­clares Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer An­thony Ci­conte from the South­ern Shark In­dus­try Al­liance... When it comes to sharks, at the moment, there is only one certified dogfish (a type of shark) fishery in the MSC programme, which “uses every piece of the shark including the fins”... That doesn’t mean that the other fisheries around the world, outside of those in the MSC programme, are engaging in these barbaric practices. Rather, it just means that they’ve decided to forgo the eco-labelling for a multitude of reasons. For example, the strict regulations governing Australia’s fisheries regarding finning and fishing mean that the seafood catch are already sustainable and traceable. And indeed, the MSC applauds any and all the environmental efforts by the people in the seafood industry... 'if I were to tell you that the fins you are eating are sourced from a sustainable fishery recognised by the Australian government and that they were being harvested under a proper management regime, would you eat shark fin soup again?'"

A deeper dive into Tyranny, an evil RPG without the "moustache-twiddling" - "“If you want to be the good character, what’s the price of being good in this world?,” asks Heins. “In a lot of RPGs, the good choices are the easy ones to make. For this game, making the good choice will have a lot of people hate you. So are you willing to pay that price to make that decision?”"

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, The Sikh Empire - "[On Ranjit Singh] Others criticse him for not living up to the Sikh Tradition and that his downfall in a sense can be ascribed to his deviation from the Sikh tradition and in accommodation of other religions and so on and so forth"

Splain: The rise and fall of a suffix in the age of Internet know-it-alls. - "As Benjamin Hart pointed out in Salon in 2014 (the same year that mansplain breached Oxford Dictionary’s online database), the term can now describe men talking at men, or men neutrally sharing information with women, or women pompously holding forth as they imagine a conceited guy might. Worse, mansplainers have grown indistinguishable from men saying something a listener does not agree with... One might even say a mansplaining accusation is the literal definition of an ad hominem attack, in that it attempts to discredit a person’s statements on account of his being a man."

The Internet Under Siege - The Defense Quorum - Quora - "What this means is that someone is intentionally creating a multitude of fake users to go about vandalizing every topic which has served as a collection place for answers which show Islam in a less than perfect light."

Outgoing CEO: Many MAS employees were doing nothing, some sleeping - "Mueller said MAS also suffered from a bloated and overpriced supply chain, partly because the airline bought products from suppliers at prices 20 to 25 percent higher than the market value... MAS had about 20,000 suppliers and, as a result, the glut made it difficult for the airline to get a volume discount from anyone"

CAUGHT: Lenovo crams unremovable crapware into Windows laptops – by hiding it in the BIOS - "This comes on the back of Lenovo's Superfish scandal, in which the PC maker shipped laptops with adware on them that opened up people to man-in-the-middle eavesdropping. Miscreants could exploit the bundled crapware to snoop on victims' encrypted connections to websites."

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, Thomas Paine's Common Sense - "[John Adams] was alarmed at Paine's suggestion that you would only have one house, you would have annual elections. It would be too democratic... Adams begins this long, I mean he's still talking about this 40 years later, this long campaign to try to undermine that side of Thomas Paine. So it's crucial to think about Common Sense as having two big arguments. One is that America should be independent. So that's really an anticolonial revolution. The other is that it should be much more democratic. That's a political revolution. And in fact you have to understand the American Revolution as containing two sets of arguments. One about how big this British Empire should be. Should American be independent from it? And the other one: how should it be governed? And Paine is always the radical on that second question... He'd been involved in the French Revolution. There's nothing so conservative as those people who've had a revolution and want to keep it that way... being a radical was no longer such a good thing... the historian Gordon Wood put this very well. That before the Revolution people talked about their family lineage and how grand their lineage was. After the Revolution they talked about how common they were"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Michael Bloomberg on Brexit and Trump - "I also have received the Freedom of the City of London award... which means I can drive cattle and sheep over London Bridge... Both Boris and David Cameron have assured me that no matter what happens with Brexit I'll still have that...
You trade, you make agreements to do things that other countries also agree to do in the interest of mutual cooperation. Does that mean that you cannot go and do something independently? No, you can do a lot of things independently, but you have to be willing to do things jointly as well...
People say things during campaigns which later on have nothing to do the way they govern, so that's the first thing. Number two, you should worry about everybody that runs and try to see, try to support, particularly if it's your country, support the candidates that will give you the best opportunities for you and your family. You're never going to agree 100% with any candidate. But you still can have a preference. I have a preference, and I'll perhaps down the road express that publicly. I'm certainly going to express that in the voting booth"

BBC World Service - The World This Week, Hillary Gets There - "Why is everybody focusing on the fact that she hasn't been able to excite young voters? Why isn't everyone asking: why didn't Bernie Sanders managed to get more support from Latinos, from African-Americans, from women above 30? And their explanation within the Clinton campaign was that Bernie Sanders made it his one focus to excite the young progressive base...
I was asked... why British voters didn't seem very worked up about such an historic choice... British people just aren't very interested in politics. It's one of the things that makes the country so agreeable...
We mourn [Muhammed] Ali not only for his greatness, but the poverty of what came later. Not just for what he took away, but what he's left us with. If he could, he would surely cry after the ageing actress Norma Desmond in the classic film Sunset Boulevard: I'm still big. It's the sport that got small. Having said all that, perhaps it's my age. Did I mention that? And the solipsistic feeling you have on the day of a funeral as you get older. That it's a marker of your own mortality. When Ali was the king, well that was back when we were kings. Or could feel that way on a good day"

BBC World Service - The World This Week, How Orlando is playing into the US presidential election - "You get these polarised reactions. On one hand, for example, the reaction to the Council of Islamic Ideology when they said that a man can lightly beat his wife was outrage. Women took to social media, they took their pictures, they had this hashtag: try beating me lightly and bear the consequences. But then you speak to other women and they say: look, it's within the Koran and Sunnah. Everything should be kept within the family. The government shouldn't get involved in any matters within the family. And frankly, if a husband beats his wife, if someone is abusive, they can solve it with relatives"
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