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Meesa gonna kill you!

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Friday, December 16, 2016

Links - 16th December 2016

My quarrel with a proud FGM cutter - "It was their own mothers, their grandmothers, their aunts - the women in their families - who had led them into their painful and degrading initiations. And here I was in Sierra Leone, a country where the majority of women have been cut, sharing pleasantries with a professional and proud cutter... She laughs and grabs my arm, pressing it against hers. "You are different to us," she tells me. "Look, you are yellow in colour, I am black. We are both women but we are not the same. You will never understand." I ask Memunatu what she would do if the government banned the practice. "We would storm the offices of the president," she bellows. "They know this is an important tradition. Many of them are in our secret society.""
If women do it to women, is it still patriarchy? Maybe Third World women are stupid and can't think for themselves

The Only Faces Men Recognize Better Than Women Are Transformers - "“This is the first category of faces where men do better than women,” lead researcher Isabel Gauthier said. All previous research has shown that women are better than men at facial recognition in general, or that there isn’t a difference between genders in how they recognize faces"

'Muslim Suburb' Proposal Has Quebec Politicians In An Uproar - "on-Muslims will be welcome to live there so long as they share the same values. “You don’t drive drunk on the street. If you want to drink alcohol, you drink it in your house,” he told the Post. “There must be some modesty in the way you dress. We don’t want women living there going half-naked down the streets. We don’t like that. … If they want to do that, let them go and live in downtown Montreal.”"

Planet Earth II producers defend brutal snow leopard 'rape' scene, saying they must compete with Game of Thrones - "And we show it… you can’t hide from the reality of animal behaviour and there are certain things that we might suddenly go, ‘oh, that’s not how we behave’ but actually, it’s instinct. And that’s all we can portray really.”

Planet Earth II's snake army killing baby iguanas shocks thousands as some call it 'the stuff of nightmares' - "Baby iguanas were seen fleeing a terrifying army of racer snakes in 'horror' footage as Planet Earth II returned to our screens last night."

Offensive language ruins search for world's worst word - "Oxford Dictionaries launched a service on its website so people could vote for their least favourite words, but it was shut down after "severe misuse". Oxford University Press said a mixture of swear words and "religiously offensive vocabulary" were to blame."

The driverless truck is coming, and it’s going to automate millions of jobs - "Shipping a full truckload from L.A. to New York costs around $4,500 today, with labor representing 75 percent of that cost. But those labor savings aren’t the only gains to be had from the adoption of driverless trucks. Where drivers are restricted by law from driving more than 11 hours per day without taking an 8-hour break, a driverless truck can drive nearly 24 hours per day. That means the technology would effectively double the output of the U.S. transportation network at 25 percent of the cost. And the savings become even more significant when you account for fuel efficiency gains. The optimal cruising speed from a fuel efficiency standpoint is around 45 miles per hour, whereas truckers who are paid by the mile drive much faster. Further fuel efficiencies will be had as the self-driving fleets adopt platooning technologies, like those from Peloton Technology, allowing trucks to draft behind one another in highway trains. Trucking represents a considerable portion of the cost of all the goods we buy, so consumers everywhere will experience this change as lower prices and higher standards of living."

The Stark Contrast Between GOP’s Self-Criticism in 2012 and Democrats’ Blame-Everyone-Else Posture Now - "Democrats have spent the last 10 days flailing around blaming everyone except for themselves, constructing a carousel of villains and scapegoats — from Julian Assange, Vladimir Putin, James Comey, the electoral college, “fake news,” and Facebook, to Susan Sarandon, Jill Stein, millennials, Bernie Sanders, Clinton-critical journalists, and, most of all, insubordinate voters themselves — to blame them for failing to fulfill the responsibility that the Democratic Party, and it alone, bears: to elect Democratic candidates. This Accept-No-Responsibility, Blame-Everyone-Else posture stands in stark contrast to how the Republican National Committee reacted in 2012, after it lost the popular vote for the fifth time in six presidential elections. RNC Chairman Reince Priebus called Mitt Romney’s loss “a wake-up call,” and he was scathing about his party’s failures: “There’s no one reason we lost. Our message was weak; our ground game was insufficient; we weren’t inclusive; we were behind in both data and digital; our primary and debate process needed improvement. … So, there’s no one solution: There’s a long list of them.”

Apple (AAPL) screwed up MacBook Pro by removing Escape and Function keys with Touch Bar that developers are turning to Windows PCs

Five myths about cheating - "young men don’t cheat because they have fallen out of love with their partners. Rather, they cheat simply because they desire sex with someone else, even if they want to preserve their relationship. I found that, though 78 percent of the men I interviewed had cheated on their current partner, only a handful said they cheated because they were near the end of their emotional relationships. And women may respond to similar pressures: According to a 1999 study in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 68 percent of female undergraduates also cheat. (Whether they cheat for sexual or emotional reasons remains unclear.)... In a 1991 study, sex researcher Shere Hite found that 70 percent of married women have cheated on their partners; a 1993 follow-up study found that 72 percent of married men have as well... Although society cherishes monogamy, the expectation of exclusive sexual activity is unsustainable for most couples. We may need to investigate other relationship models: open arrangements, or what sex columnist Dan Savage calls “monogamish” relationships, in which couples have flings, affairs or threesomes. These ways of loving, along with polyamorous relationships and even singlehood, should be as equally valued in our culture as monogamy. Only when men and women are able to make sexual choices free of stigma will people be honest with their partners about their desires."

Hate Crimes, Hoaxes, and Hyperbole - "When I reported last Friday that there had been "no violent hate-crimewave" happening—emphasis on the word violent—it was to dispel widespread rumors of a post-election surge in physical attacks on gay, transgender, and non-white Americans by emboldened and bigoted Trump supporters. Thankfully, this still holds true. While the public expression of nativist, racist, sexist, or anti-LGBT sentiments may have experienced a post-election upswing, incidents of actual altercations or attacks have still been very rare. Several of the most prominent early reports of Trump-inspired violence against people of color were later admitted to be fabrications or directly contradicted by police statements. Pointing this out seems to really anger people, who assume my intent is discredit all such reports, or to deny that there's any bigotry among Trump supporters. Neither is true. Rather, I saw a lot of distortions being spread and a lot of people who were really scared. I heard from LGBT and Jewish and non-white friends of mine, in private communications and on social media, who honestly believed it was open season on them this week. And I didn't want to see people I care about fearing for their very lives and physical safety because of a massive amount of misinformation floating around... when it comes to physical aggression inspired by this election, we are looking at a little more than a dozen incidents reported, over a 10 day period, in a country of roughly 318.9 million people—none of which resulted in serious injuries. And these incidents vary widely in how much they can be attributed to politics, prejudice, and hate versus tempers, egos, and mental-health issues flaring along with the election results and our collective heightened emotional state."

Sorry Democrats, But Americans Are Remarkably Tolerant People - "No rational person would deny that racists and bigots exist. Believe it or not, as a Jew myself, this election cycle isn’t the first time my background has been attacked. When you start likening contemporary political officials to Nazis, though, I tend to think you’re shortchanging the people who decimated my family back in the Old Country. It’s also undeniable that over the past year some legitimately worrisome voices have found footing with Republicans. Maybe Steve Bannon is going to be bad news. I wasn’t too crazy about Obama nominating someone who claimed her favorite political philosopher was Mao, either. Still, there was no Great Leap Forward. If you believe one side is normalizing extremism, think about this: Rep. Keith Ellison, a guy whose political career was launched as a member the anti-Semitic and racist Nation of Islam, and who is one of the most radically left-wing members of Congress, may soon be running the DNC. Just juxtapose the stories and rhetoric surrounding Bannon and Ellison. Only one is treated as if he’s outside the norm. In the minds of many, the only reason someone could be critical of Ellison is that he’s an African-American Muslim. Democrats have become so fixated on race and identity that they’re unable to imagine anything else could matter. Hannah Arendt once wrote that Western intellectuals had adopted one of Communism’s most effective tactics: they made all debate about motive rather than the merits of the argument. This outlook has consumed the American Left. Is there any contemporary political dispute today that doesn’t come down to accusing conservatives of harboring deep-seated motives about race or sex? Some (and I really, feel uncomfortable calling them “liberals” anymore) have convinced themselves Trump’s victory confirms that half the country is made up of white supremacists — as if voting and governance were that simple. In truth, the reason racism is treated as a grievous social sin is because it is so rare and intolerable in everyday discourse. The Left compensates for this by constantly expanding the description of bigotry to include anyone opposing their policy preferences. When everyone is a racist, no one is."

Girl 'made sex abuse claims' after $1k phone bill scolding - "Soon after he scolded his daughter for racking up a $1,000 mobile phone bill, she alleged he had sexually abused her... The man also testified he underwent penis enlargement surgery in Johor in 2005, 2007 and 2009, due to the state of his sexual relationship with his wife. But after the third procedure, they rarely had sex due to the size of his genitals, he said. Part of the defence's case against the charges is that it was physically impossible for the man to have had sex with his daughter."

I’ve changed my mind on the gay cake row. Here’s why - "Northern Ireland’s laws against discrimination on the grounds of political opinion were framed in the context of decades of conflict. They were designed to heal the sectarian divide by preventing the denial of jobs, housing and services to people because of their politics. There was never an intention that this law should compel people to promote political ideas with which they disagreed. The judge concluded that service providers are required to facilitate any “lawful” message, even if they have a conscientious objection. This raises the question: should Muslim printers be obliged to publish cartoons of Mohammed? Or Jewish ones publish the words of a Holocaust denier? Or gay bakers accept orders for cakes with homophobic slurs? If the Ashers verdict stands it could, for example, encourage far-right extremists to demand that bakeries and other service providers facilitate the promotion of anti-migrant and anti-Muslim opinions. It would leave businesses unable to refuse to decorate cakes or print posters with bigoted messages. In my view, it is an infringement of freedom to require businesses to aid the promotion of ideas to which they conscientiously object. Discrimination against people should be unlawful, but not against ideas."
Maybe just as Germaine Greer has been repudiated by modern feminists, Peter Thatchell will likewise be condemned

The End of Identity Liberalism - NYTimes.com - "In recent years American liberalism has slipped into a kind of moral panic about racial, gender and sexual identity that has distorted liberalism’s message and prevented it from becoming a unifying force capable of governing. One of the many lessons of the recent presidential election campaign and its repugnant outcome is that the age of identity liberalism must be brought to an end... the fixation on diversity in our schools and in the press has produced a generation of liberals and progressives narcissistically unaware of conditions outside their self-defined groups, and indifferent to the task of reaching out to Americans in every walk of life. At a very young age our children are being encouraged to talk about their individual identities, even before they have them. By the time they reach college many assume that diversity discourse exhausts political discourse, and have shockingly little to say about such perennial questions as class, war, the economy and the common good. In large part this is because of high school history curriculums, which anachronistically project the identity politics of today back onto the past, creating a distorted picture of the major forces and individuals that shaped our country... When young people arrive at college they are encouraged to keep this focus on themselves by student groups, faculty members and also administrators whose full-time job is to deal with — and heighten the significance of — “diversity issues.” Fox News and other conservative media outlets make great sport of mocking the “campus craziness” that surrounds such issues, and more often than not they are right to... Recently I performed a little experiment during a sabbatical in France: For a full year I read only European publications, not American ones. My thought was to try seeing the world as European readers did. But it was far more instructive to return home and realize how the lens of identity has transformed American reporting in recent years. How often, for example, the laziest story in American journalism — about the “first X to do Y” — is told and retold. Fascination with the identity drama has even affected foreign reporting, which is in distressingly short supply. However interesting it may be to read, say, about the fate of transgender people in Egypt, it contributes nothing to educating Americans about the powerful political and religious currents that will determine Egypt’s future, and indirectly, our own. No major news outlet in Europe would think of adopting such a focus. But it is at the level of electoral politics that identity liberalism has failed most spectacularly, as we have just seen. National politics in healthy periods is not about “difference,” it is about commonality... Liberals should bear in mind that the first identity movement in American politics was the Ku Klux Klan, which still exists. Those who play the identity game should be prepared to lose it... (To paraphrase Bernie Sanders, America is sick and tired of hearing about liberals’ damn bathrooms.)"

Jon Stewart slams liberal 'hypocrisy' for branding Donald Trump voters racist - "Former talk show host Jon Stewart slammed the “hypocrisy” of the left for supposedly rejecting stereotypes while painting Donald Trump voters as racist... “In the liberal community, you hate this idea of creating people as a monolith. Don’t look as Muslims as a monolith. They are the individuals and it would be ignorance. But everybody who voted for Trump is a monolith, is a racist. That hypocrisy is also real in our country.”"
Stereotypes are good when they're about 'bigots'

Rutgers Professor Taken to NYC Hospital for Psychiatric Evaluation After Tweets Threatening to Kill White People: NYPD - "A Rutgers University professor who created a "politicizing Beyonce" course was taken to a New York City hospital for a psychiatric evaluation after campus police said he made threats to kill white people... One tweet posted on Tuesday showed an American flag being ignited. In another, he said "will the 2nd amendment be as cool when i buy a gun and start shooting atrandom white people or no...?"... He also tweeted that students should all participate in a walk-out planned for Rutgers' New Brunswick campus in opposition of Trump's election"

[Serious] People who have met or dealt with Donald Trump in person prior to the race, what was he like? - AskReddit - "I went to school with his daughter Tiffany so I had a few interactions with the Donald and all were positive. The one anecdote that I'll share is from the school plays. Tiffany was involved in the school theatre program and so was my brother so I was usually helping out as an usher for the plays. Donald attended all the plays that were put on despite living across the country from our school in LA. The thing that was most impressive was how here arrived to the plays, he was always late, just 1 minute late. He'd arrive and take his seat in the rear just after the house lights went down so he didn't draw any attention away from the kids. He'd slip out as quietly as he'd arrived, when he was at the school his focus was 100% on his daughter and not himself. Despite living in a pretty solid liberal area most people from that school admit that's it kind of hard to square our experiences with him up with the media's portrayal of him as a brash, egotistical idiot."
"we saw him and some other businessmen walk out of Trump Tower. Someone around us yelled out 'Hey Trump you're fired!' and he looked over and gave us the classic Donald thumbs up and got into a black SUV."
"I worked at one of his golf courses for 3 years as a valet and i also upkept the practice facilities (including driving around the ball picker upper). Every time i dealt with Big Donald he was more than respectful. Also we had an Mexican guy who cleaned carts, Felipé who he personally provided housing for out of his own pocket because he thought Felipé was such a good worker and valuable asset to the course (which he was, the guy was such a nice guy and a crazy good worker). All in all, I had a polar opposite view of who Donald Trump was prior to this election cycle."
"Trump owns a golf resort in Scotland not far from my home, and he was speaking at a chambers of commerce meeting a couple of years ago, catered by students of the local cookery college, of ehich I was one - we did little canapes and nibbles, nothing major, but he popped in and thanked us for our efforts and said he enjoyed the food, which was nice of him."
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