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More adventurous than the average bear

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Friday, April 27, 2018

Links - 27th April 2018 (2)

Why do young rural women in China become mistresses? - "‘If you’re an official, you have to have a mistress, or at least a girlfriend,’ Xiaoxue said, ‘otherwise you’re not a real man. I used to have this friend who was a fake mistress. She was best friends with a gay guy — not a “duck” [male prostitute], just a normal gay guy — who was an official’s boyfriend. So the official would pay her to come out with him and pretend to be his mistress.’ Most mistresses are rural women who come to the job through other sex work, picked up at the karaoke bars, massage parlours and nightclubs that are often an obligatory part of business socialising. Their work is about emotions as much as sex. As with western punters who seek the ‘girlfriend experience’ online, Chinese men want the illusion of intimacy. ‘You have to be the girlfriend he wanted when he was 20,’ said Xiaoxue. ‘He wants to believe that you would be with him even if he wasn’t paying.’ She distinguished being a mistress from short-term hostessing, where you had to be a perfect servant, always putting the man’s needs first. ‘If you’re too nice to him all the time, he’ll know it isn’t true,’ Xiaoxue said. ‘If he looks at another woman, you should be jealous and sulk all evening until he apologises, so he knows you care.’ Zheng Tiantian, a social anthropologist at the State University of New York, worked as a karaoke bar hostess for two years in Dalian to research her PhD... ‘I’d rather be a mistress than a wife, because you can make much more as a mistress.’ At the same time, both sides desperately seek real feeling, even as they try to conceal it from their contemporaries... ‘I knew he had to have a wife,’ she said. ‘I’m not stupid. But I thought I was his ernai, and that he loved me. Then I found that he kept three others around the city. I was his “fifth woman”, not the second.’... ‘I thought I would always be safe with him,’ said one woman. ‘I liked him so much I even arranged a threesome for his birthday. And I paid the other girl!’... Shanshan and her friends seem less like victims and more like players, aware of the limits of their work and astutely using the vulnerabilities of powerful men for their own ends"

Norway’s tough-love approach to the refugee crisis - "her government’s immigration policy, when combined with its aid policy, is not just a moral response, but the most effective moral response. ‘For me it’s a moral issue as well. You can’t just help the ones you see. You have to think about the millions you don’t see and that have a very difficult life in the world.’ She’s referring to the refugee camps in Jordan, where both Norway and the UK send aid to help those displaced by war... ‘The immigration minister here in Britain said that for the price of helping 3,000 young people here, he could help 100,000 children in other parts of the world.’ She sees this as a modern way to help asylum seekers — and more practical than the 1951 UN Refugee Convention, which obliges signatories to accommodate anyone with a ‘well-founded fear of persecution’. ‘It was an agreement for its time,’ she says. ‘But when people travel through 20 countries to come to a safe haven, I think people can see that this is not right. You could have a safe haven in your neighbouring country, so why go so far?’ Western countries that define their virtue by the number of refugees they let in, she says, also face a moral question: ‘Why should we have a system that works for the people who have money [to pay for the journey] while the rest of the refugees and people in need don’t have the money to go?’ People traffickers, she says, thrive on governments that follow the old rules and accept those who turn up on their shores. ‘If you smuggle an unaccompanied minor from Afghanistan to Europe, they say it is between $3,000 and $20,000.’ Young girls, she says, are sometimes sold to old men to finance such a journey. ‘Also, children are killed, or raped, on their way. So we need to have this under control.’ Being outside the EU, Norway does have a few more controls... “If you are an economic migrant, you are declined in Norway,” she says. “We send people back to Afghanistan if they are not in need of protection; we send them back to Somalia if they are not in need of protection.” Isn’t this a rather expensive process? “Yes, but it’s well worth it.” Police are also sent out to areas where illegal immigrants are suspected of living and working. “If we find them, we send them out. That has also decreased crime in Norway, that’s very good.”

Image of anti-Nazi, anti-Communist protesters in Poland reaches the top of /r/pics under the title "Poland had the right idea"... but a helpful Polish redditor points out that the "protestors" are in fact from the Polish far-right ONR Party and are arguably fascists themselves : SubredditDrama

Pro-choicers think the abortion debate is over. They’re out of touch with the public - "The protest had been organised by the Oxford Student Union’s Women’s Campaign (WomCam) – the irony of a campaign supposedly for the advancement of women’s interests silencing a woman’s voice seemed lost on the protesters. As I sat in the room watching unsuccessful attempts by some of the pro-life women at engaging with the protesters, I was reminded of what the Scottish philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre wrote in After Virtue, about how contemporary society seems more capable of “pure assertion” than proper moral discourse, hence “the slightly shrill tone of so much moral debate”... No-platformers may continue their undemocratic antics, but they should not claim to speak on behalf of the majority of women who would like to see additional restrictions on abortion in Britain.""

I only have sex with married men - "“I prefer them because they’ve only had one woman to please for a very long time before they meet me — and it’s much easier to perfect their skill. “Married men are wonderful — they tell you that you are beautiful, they take you out for delicious meals, they give you presents and have lovely manners, as they are well trained by their wives. “Because so many of the men I meet hardly get any sex from their wives they are so grateful in bed and they really want to please you. I’m definitely not looking to split up marriages — I think I actually enhance them. “Some of the men I see say their marriages are much better because they are having sex with me. They go home much happier to their wives. One man stopped seeing me because his sex life with his wife improved so much.”"

Libertarian economics: A philosophical critique - "I recently sat down with the platform of the American Libertarian Party. What I found did not surprise me. The platform suffers from the very same factual and conceptual difficulties that we find in the writings of the political philosophers that inspired it... there is simply no evidence that private charity has anywhere near the capacity to alleviate the sort of poverty that confronts many parts of this country. The more than 40 million people below the poverty line would simply overwhelm organizations like the Red Cross, whose budget is about one 200th of what the federal government provides for welfare and Medicaid. Natural disasters alone far outstrip the capacity of churches and secular charities. FEMA, with its US$14 billion budget, would be a libertarian casualty. If it isn’t the proper role of government to aid the poor, and private charities can’t handle it, then what? The short answer is that the people who do have property might not have it for long. Look to history. We see property crimes rise predictably with every downturn in the economy. If you take away public assistance, it stands to reason that whatever money you may save you’ll likely lose many times over in increased spending for policing, courts, prisons and other institutions that protect property owners. Indeed, I would argue that welfare is a bargain... governments around the world have been far less than perfect when it comes to protecting the environment. Yet even a modest comparison to private efforts – where, absent regulations, there are few if any incentives to act responsibly – demonstrates that public oversight is the only reasonable option. Leaving environmental decisions to the Exxons, GEs and BPs of the world would, as history has shown, have catastrophic consequences."
Libertarian logic: without government regulations, firms would be more motivated to not destroy the environment because of market pressure

Pakistani Taliban starts magazine for would-be female jihadists

The Alluring Look of a Like-Minded Liberal - "women are more likely to find a man attractive if they share political viewpoints."

How the most ideologically polarized Americans live different lives - "while jobs and family concerns are the most important factors in deciding where and whether to move, “Republican migrants show a preference for moving to areas that are even more Republican,” and “Democrats display a similar preference for their own, though the tendency is not as strong.”"

China faces resistance to a cherished theme of its foreign policy - The belt-and-road express - "According to Tom Miller of Gavekal, a consultancy, the Chinese think they will lose 80% of their money in Pakistan, 50% in Myanmar and 30% in Central Asia. Perhaps they can afford this, but it would be a costly success... Even in Pakistan, one of China’s closest friends in Asia, Mr Xi has been forced to abandon his usual mantra of “non-interference” in others’ internal affairs. Late last year China openly appealed to Pakistan’s opposition politicians not to resist construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, a part of the belt that links Xinjiang, China’s westernmost province, with Gwadar on the Indian Ocean"

Why do women still earn a lot less than men? - The Economist explains - "According to data from 25 countries, gathered by Korn Ferry, a consultancy, women earn 98% of the wages of men who are in the same roles at the same employers. Women, however, outnumber men in lower-tier jobs, such as secretarial and administrative roles, whereas men predominate in senior positions. And women cluster in occupations and industries that pay lower salaries overall... In eight countries polled by The Economist and YouGov earlier this year, 44-75% of women with children living at home said they had scaled back at work after becoming mothers... A recent study estimated that in America women’s future wages fall, on average, by 4% per child, and by 10% per child in the case of the highest-earning, most skilled white women. In Britain, a mother’s wages fall by 2% for each year she is out of the workforce, and by twice as much if she has good school-leaving qualifications."
This is interesting international data on the gender wage gap being a myth (previous studies use American data, mostly). The fact that it extends across 25 countries is very telling. Not that this will kill the feminist myth, of course

The real gap: fixing the gender pay divide - "New Korn Ferry Hay Group research shows that male-female pay disparity isn’t exactly as commonly portrayed. Tapping into its database of more than 20 million salaries at 25,000 organizations in 100 nations, the firm found that the gap is remarkably small—as low as 2.7% in France, for instance, or 1.4% in Australia across the globe, or .8% in Britain for like positions. The disparities the research found can be pegged to women still not getting access to the highest-paying jobs. The study shows that gender pay disparities all but disappear if comparisons are made like for like, looking at individuals doing the same function in the same company."

Min and Max secondary stats on 5 star mods : SWGalaxyOfHeroes - "there are only 7 speed 25+ mods out of nearly a million"
Keywords: SWGOH, minimum, maximum

Mod Drop Rate Analysis - Final Report : SWGalaxyOfHeroes

Sainsbury's shows shoppers how to 'get the slave look' with 12 Years A Slave display mannequin

Man Turns Wife's Shopping Trips Into Hilarious Game - "while waiting for his wife to try on some clothes, Venegas was suddenly hit with inspiration... he tries on the exact outfit as one of the mannequins in the store and poses next to them"

ELI5: How does bowing work in Japanese culture. I've heard there are so many subtleties to bowing that a Westerner should never attempt it. Is this true? What are some of these subtleties? : explainlikeimfive - "Never get into a bowing contest with the saleswoman in the Chanel duty free shop at Narita airport.
I’d been nodding and bending politely (I hope) to just about everyone, but this was my first experience of the 90° horizontal at the waist deep bow. I felt it would be rude to turn and walk away while someone was doing that. So I bowed back (deeply, but not horizontally) and said “Arigatou” again. SHE DIDNT STRAIGHTEN UP ! I tried again but she stayed frozen. I started backing up making increasingly more desperate bows to acknowledge hers. Some of my Australian travelling companions noticed and started recording a video with an acerbic commentary. After what seemed a lifetime, I made it to the door and fled. For all I know that poor woman may still be there having suffered some locking spinal catastrophe.
My girlfriend was in the loo and said missing this was her major regret of the trip."
"I don't think you are supposed to bow to sales clerks. Because you did and you were the respectable customer she had to bow lower and longer than you did to show that she knows your social standing in that particular interaction was higher than hers."
"You essentially held the door for a door man, and she didn't know what to do."

Within these walls: inside the legal brothels of Bangladesh - "Bangladesh is one of the few Muslim countries in the world where prostitution is legal. The Kandapara brothel in the district of Tangail is the oldest and second-largest in the country – it has existed for some 200 years. It was demolished in 2014, but has been established again with the help of local NGOs. Many of the women were born there, grew up there and didn’t know where else to go when it disappeared."

Momentum supporters are called on to 'make the Left hate again' - "Labour supporters were encouraged to “make the Left hate again” during a conference for the Corbyn-supporting Momentum campaign group. The Prime Minster's husband, Philip May, was highlighted as a legitimate target for abuse at Momentum’s political festival, The World Transformed. Remarks by Dr Paolo Gerbaudo, a lecturer at King's College London, have emerged in which he says the Left’s campaigning tactics should include hate."

Thai elephant kills owner, tries to hide him - "Police said relatives found the body of Amorn Morakot, 50, covered by tree branches near the spot where he had chained his 37-year-old female elephant in Moo 4 village in Tambon Na Khao."

She Booked An Airbnb Stay In Paris For $52K - But It Was A Scam - "Ms Cho and her husband had probably received an email from the listing they saw on Airbnb and was directed to another website that looked identical to the genuine Airbnb website. They had “interacted with a ‘live-chat service'” and then wired their money from DBS Bank directly to a specific source called, “Airbnb Euro Trans” in Poland. She had assumed that this was a “natural” procedure because France was “quite bureaucratic”. It was only after they checked on the real Airbnb website and multiple contacts they made to the “host” failed, that they found out the apartment they had paid for did not exist. The couple did not see any messages that warn users from leaving the site which is one of the features implemented against scammers... Ms Cho told sources that “she will not use Airbnb again” moving forward, and wanted to share her story so others are aware and will not end up in the same plight as her... There are netizens who blame Ms Cho for what had happened to her.
Don't tell people to beware of scammers. Tell scammers not to scam

Housewife scammed of almost $52,000 by fraudsters on accommodation website Airbnb - "Executive director of the Consumers Association of Singapore (Case), Mr Loy York Jiun, said... "Consumers also have the responsibility to remain vigilant when engaging in online transactions. They should consider using payment methods with prepayment protection. For example, PayPal offers a Buyer Protection programme that safeguards consumers in the event that an order does not arrive.""
Scamming is the only crime in which the victim becomes the accused

First world war's forgotten Chinese Labour Corps to get recognition at last - "The 95,000 Chinese farm labourers who, almost a century ago, volunteered to leave their remote villages and work for Britain in the first world war, have been called "the forgotten of the forgotten"... When the war ended and other men went home, they worked on until 1920, clearing live ordnance and exhuming bodies from battlefield burials and moving them to the new war cemeteries... Painfully symbolically, the Chinese were also painted out of a giant canvas exhibited in Paris at the end of the war. It was believed to be the largest painting in the world, and showed a victorious France surrounded by her allies. It was begun in 1914, but had to be changed in 1917 to include the arrival of the United States – the space was found by painting over the Chinese workers."
The Panthéon de la Guerre was butchered later anyway

Moral Skepticism

莫丽蜜: "First, be humane to Inuka.
Next, be humane to humans.

Ed Nolan: On instagram some retarded Sinkies are insisting that polar bears and dogs should be treated the same as cows and rats because "they are all animals".

Me: Yup I agree. I treat animals the same way.

That's why I've eaten dog and want to eat cat.

There is no morally relevant distinction between cute and ugly animals.

BTW I find pigs cute. And they're smart. So you shouldn't eat them

Ed Nolan: Silly to say all animals are the same when a polar bear is not the same animal as a rat. Also silly to say there's no "morally relevant distinction" as if it's the universal truth, when the fact is that "morals" are subjective and determined by humans and society. And most people and societies will consider those who say "there is no morally relevant distinction between cute and ugly animals" as "immoral" people.

Me: So what would you say are the morally relevant differences between polar bears and rats?

Social acceptance is different from morality. Is an incoherent moral system really a system?

Ed Nolan: Morality is personal/societal and not universal. And trying to talk about logic and coherence when it comes to morality is illogical and futile.

Me: Ethicists and moral philosophers would disagree on the latter even if they might on the former

Ed Nolan: Doesn't mean they or their adherents are logical or smart. Purist thinking such as viewing all animals as the same is often reductive and illogical, as illogical as conflating morals with universal truths.

Me: First you claim logic and coherence for morality is illogical and futile so we shouldn't care about it, but now you use illogical as a derogatory term

Maybe you haven't made up your mind about whether logic is a good thing

Ed Nolan: You don't get it. I'm saying it is illogical to try to justify morals with logic. Trying to justify treating all animals the same by invoking the logical fallacy that "all animals are the same" is illogical.

Found another data point for the pool of stupid Sinkies who try to justify killing and eating dogs by invoking false logic and trying to make it sound logical. Not only stupid but also dishonest and cowardly to hide behind false logic.

Me: Lol. You just said logic is a bad thing when applied to morality

Guess you changed your mind (again?)

Ed Nolan: Yes I said logic cannot be applied to morality and that's exactly why I disagree with your attempt to apply logic to your moral value of how you treat dogs. You still can't comprehend this?

Me: If "logic cannot be applied to morality", then there's nothing wrong with "false logic"

For someone who keeps bashing logic you seem to implicitly value it a lot

(not to mention that if you claim you cannot apply logic to morality and then start arguing about the situation you are engaging in self confessed futility)

Ed Nolan: Using logic to debunk your attempt to apply logic to morality doesn't mean I'm applying logic to morality myself. Is that too difficult for you to understand or are you just unwilling to admit it?

Don't use strawman. I never bashed logic. I'm bashing stupid Sinkies who try to apply logic to their immoral values.

Using false logic to justify one's moral value is stupid, dishonest and cowardly.

Not justifying one's morality with logic is entirely consistent with pointing out why some Sinkies are stupid in trying to justify their morality with false logic. But of course it is not surprising that stupid Sinkies can't or refuse to comprehend this.

Me: The lady doth protest too much, methinks

Links - 27th April 2018 (1)

Work, not sex? The real reason Chinese women bound their feet - ""In the conventional view, it existed to please men. They were thought to be attracted to small feet," said Laurel Bossen, co-author of the new book "Bound feet, Young hands." But Bossen's research suggests that the custom has been massively misunderstood. Girls who had their feet bound didn't lead a life of idle beauty but rather served a crucial economic purpose, especially in the countryside, where girls as young as 7 weaved, spun and did work by hand, Bossen said. Foot-binding persisted for so long because it had a clear economic rationale: It was a way to make sure young girls sat still and helped make goods like yarn, cloth, mats, shoes and fishing nets that families depended upon for income -- even if the girls themselves were told it would make them more marriageable... Foot-binding persisted because it ensured that young girls sat still and worked at a boring, sedentary task for many hours each day, she said, and it died out only when manufactured cloth and foreign imports eliminated the economic value of handwork"

Five Years Ago, 'Avatar' Grossed $2.7 Billion But Left No Pop Culture Footprint - "Few today will even admit to liking it... If Avatar has any legacy at all, it is by normalizing and/or incentivizing studios to release their biggest would-be tent poles with some kind of 3D modification in order to charge more money for tickets"

The Straight Dope: Can urinating on your feet in the shower cure athlete's foot? - "Gross though it may sound to normal folk, the oft-cited practice of irrigating battlefield wounds with urine isn't completely stupid - if the other options are using water of dubious sterility or letting things fester, what the hell. The question is whether it makes any sense if you've got a choice of antibacterial or antifungal agents. Instinctive answer: Of course not, nitwit"

Facebook Thinks Saying "Men Are Trash" Is Hate Speech - "“men are trash” is not hate speech. Largely, men who act offended by things like “men are trash” or “white people suck” are doing it to make a point, not because they really are offended; they seem to think being offended by a slur is a fun activity they’re being left out of. But I’m sorry, dudes: that just isn’t how it works. “Men are trash” is simply not the same thing as sexist attacks on women, because you don’t face the systemic oppression that makes sexist slurs so toxic. If you’re a man and someone calls you a stupid trash man, wow, I’m sorry you had a bad day. If someone calls a woman a bitch or a slut, that’s tinged with millennia of oppression"
Feminism!

Are jokes about men 'hate speech'? Facebook seems to think so - "She also feels that creating blanket rules to protect groups without accounting for power dynamics and privilege is unfair to the oppressed. “That is Facebook making a decision that misogyny and racism are equal to misandry and ‘reverse-racism’ and they’re ignoring the power structure,” said Belsky."

Girlfriend of Scot who trained her dog to give Nazi salutes tells court he made her 'fat, squishy dog' look 'evil' - "Meechan, 29, of Coatbridge, Lanarkshire, has denied any wrong doing and insisted he only did it to annoy his girlfriend of three years."

Why All Jokes Are Hate Speech And Should Be Criminalised - "At best, jokes are fake-news, involving as they do a fictional narrative designed to ‘provoke laughter’; at worst, jokes are hate-speech, because ultimately they offend others"

'Doxxing' new liberal weapon for publicly shaming people as neo-Nazis, Klan sympathizers - "Tony McAleer, a former white supremacist leader who devotes himself to helping neo-Nazis who want to leave their alliances to hate groups behind, says that the permanent nature of Internet postings makes it virtually impossible to shift gears and lead a new life."

The Craziest Writings Of Social Justice Warrior Academics - "The Parallel Lives of Women and Cows: Meat Markets... According to its description on Amazon, the book suggests that in America, women and cows are treated similarly...
“Hobosexual”- Resisting capitalism by having not-for-profit sex with homeless people... In The Journal of Lesbian Studies, Heather Tapley introduces the term “hobosexual” which is “a concept representative of anti-capitalist practices in both sex and labor.” In this essay, Tapley suggests that LGBT individuals having sex in urban areas is an act of protest against the American capitalistic society."

Feminist PhD Candidate: Science Is Sexist Because It's Not Subjective - "College science classes are hostile to women and minorities because they use the scientific method, which assumes people can find reliable truths about the natural world through careful and sustained experimentation, concludes a recent dissertation by a doctoral candidate at the University of North Dakota. Laura Parson, a student in the university’s education department, reviewed eight science class syllabi at a “Midwest public university” and said she discovered in them a hidden hostility to women and minorities... Throughout her dissertation, Parson assumes and asserts that women and minorities are uniquely challenged by the idea that science can provide objective information about the natural world. This is an unfair assumption, she says, because the concept of objectivity is too hard for women and minorities to understand. “[N]otions of absolute truth and a single reality” are “masculine,” she says, referring to poststructuralist feminist theory... Rather than rejecting this insulting view of women and minorities’ intellectual and rational capacities, Parson uses it as a pretext to advocate that science classes abandon the scientific method itself (which rests on the assumption that truth is unchanging and knowable) and all other “male” forms of oppression, such as “weed-out courses, courses that grade on a curve, a competitive environment, reliance on lecture as a teaching method, an individualistic culture, and comprehensive exams”... In education theory this exhibits itself as a theory called “constructivism,” and teachers who subscribe to it say students should be set free to “construct their own knowledge” by exposing them to many different environments and giving them freedom to select their own courses of study and even lessons and reading material. But cognitive research throws cold water over this outdated and ineffective theory about how people learn. It turns out that refusing to give students explicit instruction or set their course of study drastically increases minority achievement gaps."
If a feminist says it, is it still sexist and racist?

Hillary Clinton's Islam Comments -- Saying It Has Nothing to Do with Terrorism Is a Lie - "many of the same people who clutch their pearls at the mere suggestion that Islamic terrorism has anything to do with — oh, what’s the word again? — oh right: Islam, seem to have no problem making the case that “Christian terrorism” is like a real thing... what makes the lie dangerous — very dangerous — is the possibility that, to borrow a phrase from Barack Obama, these people believe their own bullsh***. The danger is twofold. On the one hand, if you engage an enemy without actually understanding its motivations and ambitions, you will inevitably screw it up because you’ll be constantly surprised by the facts on the ground. As Irving Kristol once said, “When we lack the will to see things as they really are, there is nothing so mystifying as the obvious.” On the other hand, if you are trying to rally political support for your strategy, while at the same time giving the public every reason to believe you’re operating from a home-base in fantasyland, only fellow bullsh***ers and fools will rally to your banner. And, you’ll lose the confidence and trust of those people who see through the fog of bovine excrement."

Obama as the Green Lantern - "Political scientist Brendan Nyhan has coined a mocking phrase (deriving from an earlier Matt Yglesias observation) to summarize this conventional wisdom: Political Green Lanternism. This refers to the famous DC Comics character who receives a power ring from aliens. The hook is that the ring derives its strength from the willpower of its bearer; a normal person won’t be able to accomplish much with it, but someone with strong willpower can all but move mountains. Nyhan and others rely on some fairly recent political science literature suggesting that the presidency simply doesn’t work this way, and that the powers of the president to persuade are really much more limited than previously thought. The “great persuaders” were successful not so much because of their ability to wield the office’s clout, but rather were gifted with large partisan majorities in Congress and/or a public that was enthusiastically behind their goals... Remember, the actual policy differences between Obama, Hillary Clinton, and John Edwards were pretty limited. To help distinguish himself from the pack, and to attack Clinton indirectly, Obama all but dressed up in green tights, claiming that his candidacy would enable us to put old arguments behind us, bring people together, and transform the country."

Socioeconomic status and genetic influences on cognitive development - "A prominent hypothesis in the study of intelligence is that genetic influences on cognitive abilities are larger for children raised in more advantaged environments. Evidence to date has been mixed, with some indication that the hypothesized pattern may hold in the United States but not elsewhere. We conducted the largest study to date using matched birth and school administrative records from the socioeconomically diverse state of Florida, and we did not find evidence for the hypothesis"
So much for socialisation and tabula rasa

"What's Your Major": Another Blow to the So-Called Gender Pay Gap - "if math skills are valued in the marketplace, employees with highly-developed skill – which graduates of math-heavy doctoral programs would have – are going to be paid more. That’s not discrimination... an inordinate focus on potential discrimination is neither healthy nor helpful. It’s not healthy, because it causes women to view men as oppressors and mean to view women as a lawsuit waiting to happen. And it’s not helpful to women, because it understates the degree to which they can influence their own professional outcomes through their choices. To be sure, those choices come with downsides – more work hours, more risk, less time at home with young children and, as illustrated here, perhaps focusing on a field of study that isn’t most interesting to you. But part of doing a Ph.D. is learning to focus on the real causes of events rather than imagined ones."

Researchers have finally worked out which degree actually has the biggest workload - "Media, Journalism and Broadcasting (AKA Mass Communications and Documentation) students officially lose the “I work so hard” game, with an embarrassing 19 hours of work a week... Flip-reverse to the other end of the scale and we (obviously) find Medics and Dentists. They, surprise surprise, have to grind away for a massive 37 hours a week"

God is not a man, church decides - "The Church of Sweden is urging its clergy to use gender-neutral language when referring to the supreme deity, refraining from using terms like “Lord” and “He” in favor of the less specific “God.”... The change was met with criticism, however. Christer Pahlmblad, an associate theology professor with Sweden’s Lund University, told Denmark’s Kristeligt Dagblad that the move was “undermining the doctrine of the Trinity and the community with the other Christian churches.” “It really isn’t smart if the Church of Sweden becomes known as a church that does not respect the common theology heritage”"

Video: The Guardian Says Correcting Grammar Is Racist; Expression Of White Privilege - "Correcting grammatical errors is typically a function of a racial “power imbalance” used to silence minorities who a “struggling” to have their voices heard, according to a journalist at communist bastion The Guardian. “Grammar snobs are patronizing, pretentious, and just plain wrong,” claims Mona Chalabi, before touching on how rules and standards for the use of language tend to evolve over time. Chalabi then advances the neo-Marxist narrative of power discrepancies between groups, casting “older, wealthier, whiter” persons as neo-Kulaks. Those with poorer grammar, it is implied, belong to a neo-proletariat in need of benevolent protection from enlightened bourgeois socialites such as journalists employed by The Guardian."

Word 'Too' Sexist -- Huffington Post Article - "If you think Schaeffer’s reaction to the word “too” is crazy, don’t worry. She thinks it’s crazy, too — crazy that a “a well-versed feminist” like her didn’t realize that she needed to be outraged sooner"

The Truth About Being a White Guy in Asia - "this “it’s easy for white guys” mantra was even said by the manager (a Japanese man) of the guest house I was going to be living in. I actually have the entire conversation on video. He basically said, “You’re lucky because you’re white, and girls in japan love white guys.”... Language barriers, cultural barriers, shame barriers, weird taboos all hit us like a bag of bricks... There are some big obstacles you’ll be faced with being a “white guy” in Asia. Even if one argues it’s “easier” for a white guy in some aspects, there are definitely many “great walls” that make it very “not easy” and therefore offset the alleged advantage...
3) Shame & Self-Image Barriers: Disturbing examples of this are girls who spontaneously begin crying after kissing me for the first time, then holding me crying saying “I want kiss but feel shame,” or girls telling stories about their fear of friends talking about them and hurting their reputation. Other examples include girls covering their faces after sex or kissing, admitting they really enjoy it but feel bad as if they committed a crime... Mickey Mouse Mode is basically being a character who gets a lot of attention but none of it is romantic. Everyone stares at Mickey Mouse, everyone wants a photo with Mickey Mouse, but nobody really wants to fuck Mickey Mouse... the reason the clubs I liked had hookers was because hookers love going to clubs with Western men because most of them are naive horny tourists."
Comment: "The ONLY country you got right (from my experience) is, Korea. The reasons and cultural background were spot on but in ANY south East asian country you are pounced on."

When Did 'Hello' Become Harassment? - "if this tape represents that experience and widespread “harassment,” I’m very confused... Out of the 100 catcalls, the tape includes approximately 30 encounters, and features the following verbal assaults:
“How are you this morning?
“Have a nice evening.
“What’s up, Miss?
“Have a nice evening, darlin’.
“What’s up, beautiful? Have a good day.”
Note: Joey Tribbiani (Friends) is alive and well in New York. Several of the men who spoke to Shoshana offered his familiar catchphrase, “How you doin’?” by way of introduction. (In the unenlightened ‘90s, we used to think this was amusing.)... I can only assume the video offers a representative sampling of her day. If that’s true, out of the 100 or so, 2 percent of the guys were stalker-ish, although, given the public setting, not overtly threatening her harm... Call me naive, but many of the men were what we used to call “friendly.”"

Viagra-popping seniors lead the pack for STDs - "the rate of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in older men taking erectile dysfunction drugs like Viagra is twice as high as in their non-medicated peers... 50-year-olds are six times less likely to use a condom than men in their 20s"

Taiwan’s Social Safety Net Is the Street Market - Foundation for Economic Education - Working for a free and prosperous world
Comment: "To say that this man has no idea what the hell he is talking about is like saying Jupiter is a large planet. This piece is a pile of romanticized rubbish that substantially misrepresents Taiwan. Taiwan has an extensive welfare state, including one of the best health insurance systems in the world, employment insurance, government pension programs, and the like... The idea that street food in Taiwan is safe is entirely fanciful. Anyone with over 20 years here, like myself, knows perfectly well how totally untrustworthy it is, with widespread fakery, using bleach on fruit to keep it from spoiling, longtime reuse of oil, etc etc etc. (The lack of) Food security is a major political issue in Taiwan. Street vendors are great, and I adore them, but I don't have any romantic ideological delusions about their nature or function"

Who said Singapore is so stressful? - It is HEAVEN for Japanese working ladies - "It was quite big company in Japan and has many many branches and factories in all over Japan. There were over 100 staffs in the department where I was.
But the thing was there were no cleaning staffs in the office. And once every two weeks, yeah i think is was Friday if I'm not wrong, all employees needed stick together and cleaned the floor and rooms with sweeping, mopping etc....
Since I came to Singapore, I seldom get a feeling of gender discrimination.
You are either men or women, as long as you are capable enough, u would have a chance to get promoted and are able to explore their career opportunities in this country."

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Links - 26th April 2018 (2)

What Would Be the Best Universal Language? (Earth 2.0 Series) - Freakonomics Freakonomics - "SCHOR: The history of language invention, which goes back millennia, has to do with reversing the curse of Babel...
In the 13th century, for instance, Ramon Llull, a Majorcan philosopher with Franciscan ties, sought to create the perfect language for channeling “the Truth,” and converting people to Christianity.
SCHOR: He created a formula for generating propositions from letters and words. He felt that some of them would be propositions to which an infidel would, of necessity, have to consent. But Llull’s truth was not the Truth, or at least it didn’t seem like the truth to the Saracens who eventually murdered him...
McWHORTER: I almost wish that there was some reason that everybody had to learn colloquial Indonesian. It’s the only language I’ve ever encountered where you can learn a whole bunch of words and, even though you’re going to sound like an idiot, you can get an awful lot done. You don’t sound nearly as much like an idiot stringing together your Lonely Planet words in many parts of Indonesia. There’s no such thing as the moon being a girl and a boat being a boy. None of those things that make languages hard to learn. Really — almost none! I thought this should be the world’s universal language. Indonesian is one of those languages, like English, which has been learned by so many different people speaking so many different languages that it’s relatively user-friendly as languages go...
What would you do to make English truly accessible to everyone, especially non-native speakers?
McWHORTER: Something that we must get rid of is linguistic prescriptivism, and by that, I mean that we live with an idea that some ways of speaking a language are bad, broken, and some ways aren’t. It’s all based on myths"

How to Launch a Behavior-Change Revolution - Freakonomics Freakonomics - "Wendy WOOD: The things that we’re really good at right now is changing behavior in the short term. We’re also really good at changing people’s knowledge and beliefs. We’re not so good at changing long-term behavior... the five-a-day fruits and veggies. Anyone remember this? This was really successful in one way. It was a tremendously large-scale intervention. It was successful at changing our knowledge. We now know that we should eat more fruits and vegetables. It had no effect on behavior. In fact, consumption has gone down since the program started"

How Can I Do the Most Social Good With $100? And Other FREAK-quently Asked Questions - Freakonomics Freakonomics - "LEVITT: When I was in India I went to try to see tigers in one of the national parks. We got to talking about guns and tigers... I asked the guy if he ever had to use a gun against a tiger. He looked at me like I was crazy and he said, “We can’t. We could never. We can shoot the gun in the air, but we absolutely could never shoot a tiger.” I said, “What if the tiger was eating me?” He said, “No. The tigers are more valuable than people. It’s only after a tiger has eaten three or four people that we then would relocate the tiger to a place where there weren’t so many people around”... “Surely you must value the tourist life higher than one of the local people’s lives, don’t you?” But he very clearly suggested to me that no, tourist lives were still nothing near the value of a tiger’s life."

I created “Medusa Magazine” and I am shutting it down because Feminist stupidity has surpassed satire - "we put out another article titled “Why we should believe women who accuse right wingers of rape more than those who accuse liberals”. The article is a total caricature intended to be as ridiculous as possible, basically arguing that because liberals are good people, we should forgive them when they rape women. We thought no one in the world could possibly hold views as ridiculous as that, so we wrote it as satire and published it. So imagine our surprise when an actual Feminist and self-proclaimed expert on “rape culture” wrote an article for The Washington Post no less, using the same rational and reasoning as our satirical article that was written just a few days before... this batshit-insane Feminist isn’t alone in her thinking, others seem to share her views on the topic... there is no point in operating a caricature website of Feminism anymore when real life Feminists are now more insane than any caricature we could ever dream up. If you enjoyed our content and are sad to see us go, then just go follow any legitimate Feminist blog or any of the many obnoxious Feminists on Twitter. Their content is the same as ours."

5 Social Theories That Prove Health Is Constructed - Everyday Feminism - "1. Healthism
Healthism (Crawford, 1980) describes a political ideology wherein a biomedical understanding of health is given social power and individuals are held responsible for their ability to uphold their own health...
2. Social Model of Disability... "Society is organized in such a way that barriers and restrictions exist for disabled people. That’s not on individuals — that’s on society.” It suggests that it’s society’s responsibility not to be disabling, not individuals’ responsibility not to be disabled"
Since health is socially constructed we shouldn't subsidise healthcare as that privileges one narrative over another

Campus Rape and Sexual Assault Researchers on 1-in-5 | Time - "it’s likely you’ve heard some variation of the claim that 1 in 5 women on college campuses in the United States has been sexually assaulted or raped. Or you may have heard the even more incorrect abbreviated version, that 1 in 5 women on campus has been raped. As two of the researchers who conducted the Campus Sexual Assault Study from which this number was derived, we feel we need to set the record straight. Although we used the best methodology available to us at the time, there are caveats that make it inappropriate to use the 1-in-5 number in the way it’s being used today, as a baseline or the only statistic when discussing our country’s problem with rape and sexual assault on campus."

Post/Kaiser poll shows that 20 percent of women sexually assaulted in college | The Washington Post
The Washington Post advertises this 2015 survey with the Kaiser Family Foundation which supposedly validates the one in five statistic, but it sneakily conflates drunk sexual activity with sexual assault: "unwanted sexual contact while you were unable to provide consent or stop what was happening because you were... drunk... these situations might include times that you voluntarily consumed alcohol" (and even then it's still not advertised as one in five being raped). Grinding and kissing are also included in the definition of sexual assault here, but most people wouldn't use this definition. So if a woman is drunk at a club and someone grinds her and she likes it, this would be considered sexual assault according to this study. The Campus Climate Survey Validation Study seems better (but somehow hasn't gotten much press) but still implicitly uses a "yes means yes" notion of consent

Erwin Schrödinger: a misunderstood icon of physics - "Despite devising both the defining equation and the defining thought experiment of quantum physics, Erwin Schrödinger was never comfortable with what he helped to create. His “Schrödinger’s Cat” paradox, published in 1935, was an attempt to expose the flaws in the physics that flowed from his eponymous equation. And yet, that cat – both dead and alive – has become an icon of quantum physics rather than a warning against its shortcomings."

Actress Susan Sarandon: Feminism Is 'Warped,' 'Hillary Was Dangerous' - "The 71-year-old actress told the Guardian on Sunday that she's suffering a wave of attacks because during the 2016 presidential election she chose not to back Hillary Clinton and instead backed the third party candidate, Jill Stein. "I’m not attacked from the right at all,” Sarandon told the U.K.'s left-leaning publication. Instead, she says, "she is accused of not checking her white privilege, of throwing away her vote on a third-party candidate during the U.S. presidential election, and of recklessly espousing a political cause that let Trump in through the backdoor." The interview focuses mostly on Sarandon's continued success as an actress despite being in her seventh decade — an age that many in Hollywood would consider simply too old — but Sarandon, who has always been politically involved even when other celebrities were shying away from even outspoken liberal-ness (hardly a courageous position to take in the entertainment industry), says it's her political ideals that seem to have caused her the most trouble."

'If the sex is bad, leave': South Korea wakes up to its sexual revolution - "“Why do you need to be engaged or feel some deep responsibility to have sex?” she wrote. “If they’re hotties with bodies just hop on.” “Who cares about goddamn attachment,” Lin wrote in another post, adding an expletive-filled sentence that expressed her hatred of men who underperform in bed. “From now on, I’ll try them out and if the sex is bad, I’m never gonna meet them again”... the shop tries to shake the seedy image most associate with sex toys. Staff ensure every customer receives a pamphlet with a detailed drawing showing the location of the clitoris... In a sign of lingering conservative attitudes, South Korea’s most popular search engine, Naver, has blocked results for searches for the store’s name, forcing Kwak to place a sticker on each item explaining how to circumvent the ban.
I wonder what Lin would say about men who called women hotties with bodies

Learning to code will eventually be as useful as learning Ancient Greek - "Evidence suggests that coding will increasingly be implemented, even planned, by AI systems. This is part of a natural progression from computer-friendly to human-friendly systems

Winston Churchill on the Arts - "The anecdote goes as follows: The prime minister was once asked to cut funding for art programs in order to support the war effort. Churchill refused, according to the story, and said that preserving the arts was the only reason that the war was worthwhile... there is no record of Churchill saying this... A spokesman for the International Churchill Society confirmed to us that the quote was fake, but added that Churchill did express a similar sentiment about the importance of the arts in 1938...
“The arts are essen­tial to any com­plete national life. The State owes it to itself to sus­tain and encour­age them….Ill fares the race which fails to salute the arts with the rev­er­ence and delight which are their due.”
But this was, of course, before Britain was engaged in a war for national survival."

The Push to Make French Gender-Neutral - "“My homeland is the French language,” author Albert Camus once wrote—and many French people would agree... Some scientific research does seem to suggest that gendered languages like French lead to more sexist perceptions than gender-neutral ones like English. But those studies are limited in that they can’t control for outside factors like culture, which are extremely important in determining sexist attitudes... Many philosophers and scholars came out strongly against what they saw as feminist activism masquerading as linguistic science—and using children as guinea pigs. Emmanuelle de Riberolles, a literature professor in the Picardie region of France, argued that “children should not be dragged into struggles that do not concern them.” Even the Minister of Education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, came out against inclusive writing, explaining that “language is a bedrock of life that we owe to children” and that it “must not be instrumentalized, even for the best of causes.” The French Academy, the highest council for matters pertaining to the French language, issued a strong statement, saying that the additional grammatical complications of inclusive writing would lead to “a disunited language, disparate in its expression, creating a confusion that borders on illegibility.” What’s more, “faced with this ‘inclusive’ aberration, the French language is now in mortal danger, a fact for which our nation is now accountable to future generations.” The statement also warned that inclusive writing would “destroy” the promises of the Francophonie"
Wait till the non-binary and 256820 gender people come onto the scene, which might happen in a few decades (there is a lag effect from when a progressive moment surfaces in Anglo culture)

I'm calling out the loons who make Israel bashing the mother of all virtues - "The lazy analogy that BDS rests on is with South African apartheid. But unlike apartheid-era South Africa, Arabs make up 20 percent of Israel’s full citizenry. Most of these Arab-Israeli citizens are Muslim. There are mosques on Israeli beaches. Alongside Hebrew, Arabic is an official language of Israel. An Arab-Israeli judge has even impeached and convicted former Israeli prime minster, Ehud Olmert. And though many problems with integration persist – as they do with minority communities across the West – when surveyed 77 percent of these Arabs expressed an overwhelming preference to remain Israeli, rather than become citizens of a future Palestinian state. The reason is obvious, Israeli-Muslims have more freedom of religion than other minorities – and even other Muslims have in all other Middle-Eastern countries. The problem lies in the status of the West Bank and Gaza, not with any imaginary apartheid system inside Israel proper... An unexceptional land dispute: this is all that it was. Until it became fetishised. The truth is, there is nothing unique about the Israel conflict deserving such disproportionate attention by people who have little connecting them to this land. Baluchistan, Kurdistan, Cyprus, Kashmir, and Taiwan are but a few other disputed territories not fetishized like Palestine is by our left, by Muslims, at the UN and in our media... activists with little ancestral connection to Palestine have become obsessed with instramentalising this particular dispute to grind their own ideological axes... It is not uncommon on Western university campuses to witness absurdities such as student groups refusing to condemn ISIS for fear of causing anti-Muslim bigotry, or proudly partnering with pro-jihadist groups such as CAGE UK, all the while calling for the entire people of Israel to be boycotted. No doubt, many of these same student groups would support Obama’s deal to ease sanctions on Hezbollah-terrorist-supporting, Assad-backing, theocratic Iran, while simultaneously calling for sanctions to be imposed on a democratic Israel... As a British author I would be mortified if my work were censored around the world due to the actions of my government—such as the invasion of Iraq, which I have always opposed. How would Turkish authors feel if they were held responsible for the increasingly unhinged, autocratic Erdogan’s Islamisation of Turkey, or his approach toward the Kurds? And yet, amid Chinese abuse in Tibet and Xinjiang, Burmese oppression of the Rohingya, the Kurdish people’s struggles, the plight of women and just about any free thinker in Saudi Arabia and Iran, the rights of practically everybody in North Korea, and the Ukrainian struggle to liberate the Crimea, the only foreign government that seems to attract the constant ire of our National Union of Students is the one that – with all its imperfections – is more democratic and transparent than most of the above: Israel... Arab despots point to Israel as their excuse for never holding free and fair elections, ever."

A Sex Difference in Sports Interest: What Does Evolution Say? - "females' underrepresentation in sport — both as participants and spectators — generally reflects their lesser sports interest, not merely fewer opportunities for involvement. Moreover, this sex difference occurs in all societies described thus far, from hunters and gatherers to large contemporary societies. For example, in every society with available data, males participate in sports at least twice as much as females in terms of frequency or duration... sports serve as courtship displays that advertise participant quality to the opposite sex. This hypothesis effectively explains some aspects of females' sports interest... no experimental manipulation or systematic historical comparison has ever shown a decrease in the sex difference. Moreover, several studies indicate that prenatal hormones contribute to males' greater sports interest."

How do sports news shows disguise sexism against women's sports? - "Women's stories averaged one minute and 17 seconds on SportsCenter—nearly 50% shorter than men's sports stories... Game footage highlighting impressive plays accompanied most of men's sports segments—83.1% of local news and 88.6% of SportsCenter stories. Instead of featuring in-action game footage, women were frequently shown on the bench cheering for their teammates or hugging one another while celebrating a victory... Sports commentators rarely gave women lavish compliments, though they regularly called men's athletic accomplishments "perfect," "beautiful," or "amazing.""

USA women's team suffer 5-2 loss to FC Dallas' U-15 boys - "The USA women's football team were convincingly beaten by a team of adolescents in a embarrassing defeat for the world champions. They were roundly outplayed, losing 5-2 against FC Dallas Under-15s academy side who took full advantage of their big day. "
I'm sure a study will find there is ageism against adolescent sports leagues with less coverage of them, less game footage highlighting impressive plays being highlighted and their getting fewer lavish compliments

Matildas lose 7-0 to Newcastle Jets under-15s side in Rio Olympics warm-up - "Australia's national women's soccer team have suffered a devastating defeat in the lead up to the Rio Olympics - going down 7-0 to the Newcastle Jets under-15 boys side. What is particularly concerning for the Matildas is that despite resting some regulars, they were still able to field experienced international stars including former AFC player of the year Katrina Gorry... While the Matildas played with a rotating squad, there is no denying losing to a team of school boys is far from ideal preparation for the world's fifth ranked team in their quest for Olympic gold at Rio. Assistant Matildas coach Gary van Egmond was as surprised as anyone about the result admitting his side were outplayed... It may not be the first time that the Australian team have suffered a heavy defeat against school boys with claims that they were 'smashed' by an under 16 Sydney FC team last year circulating."

The US Mens U-17 soccer team played the USWNT three months before they won the Gold at the Olympics. The U-17 Men's team won 8-2. - "My former boss played the Norwegian national team with his U-14 team when he was a kid (the late 1980's) and they won 10-0 or something along those lines. People who don't watch a lot of football will probably not realize how incredible inferior the female game is, even lower league sides in most European nations would probably beat the US national team comfortably. Men are a lot bigger, stronger, cover more ground, can jump higher etc. etc., female goalies are also usually horrendously bad and struggle with shots that average male goalkeepers would save. There is a reason the women's champions league final only attracts around 20 000 spectators, most Europeans are used to proper football and can't really stand watching the women's game. Kinda like the WNBA in the USA."

Man vs. Woman: Exploring a Bad Idea - "While still a kickboxer, Lucia Rijker fought a man, Somchai Jaidee. At the time of the fight, Somchai Jaidee had 13 wins, 1 loss with 9 wins coming by way of KO, or at least that’s how he was billed. When one watches this fight, one gets the feeling that Somchai is a legitimate fighter. Rijker isn’t looking for a “one and done” push over. She wants to fight a real male kickboxer. As amazing and dominant a striker as Lucia Rijker was, a true legend, she got knocked out in the second round by a male kickboxer, one who hasn’t left a mark on Google beyond this one fight. Rijker deserves credit for her courage and warrior spirit but even this unbeatable female fighter got knocked out, rather easily, by a nearly anonymous male... Real fights between men and women almost never go the way we want them to but they almost always go in the depressing ways we should expect them to"
Lucia Rijker, billed as "The Most Dangerous Woman in the World", lost to a nobody man

Citizens and Permanent Residents vs Foreigners

Apparently it's controversial that citizens/Permanent Residents should get benefits foreigners do not, or even to say so (I got blocked by someone I had never interacted with after raising that question, so I assume that was the reason).

One claim is that foreigners pay as much taxes as Citizens/Permanent Residents, so they should get the same benefits as them.

Yet, this misconstrues the nature of the relationship of a state with its citizens.

Some Singaporeans will bring up the usual canard of National Service to justify Singaporeans/Permanent Residents getting more benefits, yet one does not need to appeal to particularities of Singapore, since we can see that even in liberal, developed countries, citizens and permanent residents receive more benefits from foreigners.

I can think of at least 4 justifications for giving citizens and permanent residents more benefits than foreigners:

1) Permanence
2) Duration of past relationship
3) Kinship
4) Reciprocity in civic duty

1) Permanence

Foreigners are not assumed to be staying in the country permanently or even for the medium/long term, but citizens and permanent residents are.

This is also why in developed countries permanent residents get almost the same status as citizens - for example, generally being allowed to reside there permanently.

In most countries, foreigners who have been in the country for a while are allowed to apply for permanent residence, to signal that they want to enter into a more permanent relationship with the country. So foreigners are not discriminated against per se. This application may be conditional upon having/having have had a job, though, so permanence isn't the only justification (and we can also see this by how a country still has a relationship with citizens who are residing abroad permanently).

2) Duration of past relationship

Whereas the first point is about the future relationship between individuals and countries, this is about the historic one.

A foreigner typically has not been in, or had a relationship with, his host country for very long (if at all, for a new foreigner).

Yet citizens have had one (typically since birth) and permanent residents usually have had one for a period in the past too.

It is reasonable to have a closer relationship with someone with whom you have history than someone with whom you have little or none.

3) Kinship

One can think of the relationship a citizen has with his country as similar to that between that of a parent and an adult child.

Nations are imagined communities, after all. So besides the relationship one putatively has with one's other citizens, one also has a relationship with the state.

So just as we would not fault a parent for helping his adult child with a downpayment on his house but not a colleague, we wouldn't fault a country for treating citizens better than foreigners (even if the parent interacts a lot more with the colleague and indeed if his job depends on the colleague but not the child).

To a lesser extent, this applies to permanent residents (perhaps one could see it as a relationship between a parent and a child-in-law.

4) Reciprocity in civic duty

Interestingly, we can see that in jurisdictions with jury duty, if you are eligible to vote, you are eligible for jury duty too (this is not just limited to citizens - in the UK, Commonwealth citizens who can vote must do jury duty too).

Voting, too, is considered a duty (even if there might be no penalties if you don't do so).

So privileges also come with responsibilities - and these are not purely monetary.

From these 4 points, we can see that there is a reciprocal, enduring, historic relationship between a country and its citizens and permanent residents that goes beyond the payment of taxes and the bestowment of benefits.

Links - 26th April 2018 (1)

Sweden’s abolitionist discourse and law: Effects on the dynamics of Swedish sex work and on the lives of Sweden’s sex workers - "The Swedish criminalization of the purchase of sex aims to abolish prostitution through targeting the demand, while decriminalizing those selling sex in an ostensible effort to protect sex workers – constructed as passive victims of gendered violence – from criminalization... We argue that the law has failed in its abolitionist ambition to decrease levels of prostitution, since there are no reliable data demonstrating any overall decline in people selling sex. Furthermore, we argue that the law has resulted in increased dangers in some forms of sex work. Dangers are exacerbated by a lack of harm reduction services, which are seen to conflict with Swedish abolitionism. Moreover, discourses and social constructions informing the sexköpslagen have informed the attitudes of service providers. In addition to specific outcomes of the law, we note evictions of sex workers, problems with immigration authorities, child custody and the police, and briefly discuss these themes. Where Sweden continues to attempt to export the sexköpslagen to other parts of the world, these elements should be carefully considered."

Ruin - "Wired’s Laura Hudson calls public shaming “a core competency of the Internet” and argues that shamers vastly underestimate social media’s capacity to ruin lives. Where the mob seeks to castigate and punish, Ronson wants to call attention to flawed humanity. Where the mob treats offenders as inherently evil, Ronson sees ordinary people making understandable, and forgivable, mistakes. He is baffled at the lack of empathy shown to these individuals, as if they weren’t people but rather “like corporations that had committed PR disasters,” deserving of a boycott... He explores the idea of contagion in crowd theory and muses about the illusion of innocence the mob provides: “The snowflake never needs to feel responsible for the avalanche.” His most interesting observation is that shamers are often convinced they are doing good. The people who took down Sacco believed they were punching up, he argues. “They were cutting down a member of the media elite, continuing the civil rights tradition that started with Rosa Parks, the hitherto silenced underdogs shaming into submission the powerful racist”... If there is a political lesson to take from Ronson’s book, it is that too often the act of shaming is not a launch pad for social change but rather a cathartic alternative to it... When Sacco and Stone were fired from their jobs, the tone of their shamers took on the triumphant tenor of a civil rights victory, as though the world were a step closer to purging its remaining bad apples. But this attitude ignores the systemic nature of oppression; it personalizes social and political ills... The VA imbroglio, like so many public scandals, underscores the hazard of mistaking symbol for structure. The ritual takedown of a scapegoat may gratify, however fleetingly, an impulse for justice, but it often benefits the very institution supposedly under attack. We perpetuate the system when we limit our outrage to a single person... the enemy is homogenization: “We were creating a world where the smartest way to survive is to be bland.”"

Wikipedia Is More Biased Than Britannica, but Don’t Blame the Crowd - "Shane Greenstein of Kellogg and Feng Zhu of Harvard Business School measured the political bias of Wikipedia and Britannica by counting the number of politically charged words in pairs of articles. Previous research has demonstrated that political partisans use different language. In the U.S., Republicans are more likely to use terms like “illegal immigration” and “border security.” Democrats are more likely to use “war in Iraq”, “civil rights”, or “trade deficit”. These word choices predict the speaker’s ideological slant... Wikipedia is significantly more biased than Britannica by this measure, and a bit more left-leaning... “Wikipedia articles which have received more revisions tend to be more neutral.” The more the crowd works on an article, the less biased it is."
So Wikipedia overall has a slight liberal bias, especially for articles that aren't edited a lot (i.e. most of them)

NYU Mock Eviction Notices - "“Dorm Storming” is a tactic used by anti-Israel activists at many campuses to slide mock eviction notices under student bedroom doors in the middle of the night, allegedly to let students know how Palestinians feel when served with eviction notices prior to demolition of their homes. The content of the flyers, including the frequency, number, and practice of such pre-demolition eviction notices is disputed, but that’s somewhat besides the point. Students for Justice in Palestine frequently is the perpetrator of these dorm stormings, as happened at Northeastern University recently, resulting in SJP’s suspension. The point of sliding political flyers under dorm doors, rather than handing them out on the street as students enter and exit, is to intimidate students in their most vulnerable place, their bedroom, and at their most vulnerable time, while they sleep. That is why many if not most universities ban the practice... SJP and other anti-Israeli activists often deny that they target Jewish students, but it’s hard to understand why Palladium Hall, with its known concentration of religious Jewish students, was targeted. This is part of a growing aggressiveness of anti-Israeli activitists at NYU and elsewhere."

What Is “Austrian Economics” and Why Is Ron Paul Obsessed With It? - "“Austrians” in Paul’s sense refers to something narrower, specifically the thought of Ludwig Von Mises and his student Murray Rothbard. It is a form of capitalism that is even more libertarian and anarchic than that espoused by many libertarians. Rothbard‘s followers, most prominently longtime Paul associate and founder of the Mises Institute Lew Rockwell, have been waging a decades-long war against the Koch brothers and the more mainstream form of libertarianism the Kochs represent... the Austrian story of investment booms and busts doesn’t actually explain recessions and unemployment... Many of the original Austrians found their business cycle ideas discredited by the Great Depression, in which the bust was clearly not self-correcting and country after country stimulated real output by abandoning the gold standard and engaging in deficit spending. Then for a long time after World War II, policy elites more or less agreed on a combination of “automatic” fiscal stabilizers (the deficit naturally goes up during recessions as tax revenues fall and social service outlays rise) and interest rate cuts. And it worked, so nobody much cared about Austrian economics outside of crank circles"

Top Seven Reasons the Left is the New Moral Majority - "My father once told me, “The pendulum swings.” We were talking about history, and I was very young at the time. He explained how the licentious 1920s were a response to the prudish Victorian Era, how the conservative post-WWII of the 1950s was a rejection of the risk-taking 1920s that led to the Great Depression. The hippies of the 1960s were a response to the rigidity of his own generation, although he was unnerved by their libertine ways. In response to the sex, drugs and rock and roll of the 1960s came a group that feared the end of America as we knew it—an end to the nuclear family, an end to a Christian nation. And thus was born The Moral Majority...
1. Can’t take a joke
2. Espouses strict codes of virtue. The Moral Majority’s code of virtue was culturally familiar and contained in the Bible, which made it, at least, accessible. The Left’s current code of virtue is confusing. This is best illustrated by a guy named Adam Smith, who recorded an incident in which he berated a cashier at Chik-Fil-A because of the owner’s expressed belief in traditional marriage. Smith posted the video on Facebook, undoubtedly expecting to be heralded as a champion of the Left. What Smith didn’t take into account was that he berated a minimum wage employee, and he took all manner of backlash from the Left for having shamed her over her boss’s religious beliefs...
3. Is obsessed with rules about sex. As far as the Left is concerned, you can—and should—have sex with any other consenting adult whenever you want, as long as one party doesn’t actually pursue the other, that the word, “No,” is not uttered at any time before or during any sexual act, and that each partner should get permission from the other before doing anything remotely unexpected. In the 1987 movie Cherry 2000, men had turned away from real women and instead purchased sexbots to meet their relationship needs. The rare human-to-human sexual encounters required legal contracts prior to sexual activity and all parameters of the hook-up were negotiated beforehand. And the movie was set in the year—you guessed it—2017.
4. Engages in shaming. Shaming, for those on the Left, is a fine art. There are many rules—far more rules than in the Bible. You can’t fat shame or slut shame a woman, but you must shame her if she didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton. You can mom shame her if she praises her child who just played a Beethoven sonata on the piano while neglecting to praise her other child who just scribbled all over the bathroom wall with a permanent marker. You can shame her if she lets her kids go to the park alone, unless she was at work and couldn’t afford childcare. Like I said, it’s confusing.
5. Wants to legislate morality
6. Prefers censorship to discussion
7. Believes dissenters are evil"

There Are Few Libertarians. But Many Americans Have Libertarian Views. - "Why should views on (for example) gay marriage, taxation, and U.S. policy toward Iran have much of anything to do with one another?2 The answer is that it suits the Democratic Party and Republican Party’s mutual best interest to articulate clear and opposing positions on these issues and to present their platforms as being intellectually coherent. The two-party system can come under threat (as it potentially now is in the United Kingdom) when views on important issues cut across party lines."

Six Reasons Libertarians Should Reject the Non-Aggression Principle - "The libertarian armed with the NAP has little need for the close study of history, sociology, or empirical economics. With a little logic and a lot of faith in this basic axiom of morality, virtually any political problem can be neatly solved from the armchair...
1. Prohibits All Pollution
2. Prohibits Small Harms for Large Benefits
3. All-or-Nothing Attitude Toward Risk
4. No Prohibition of Fraud
5. Parasitic on a Theory of Property
6. What About the Children???... taken to its consistent extreme, as Murray Rothbard took it, the NAP implies that there is nothing wrong with allowing your three year-old son to starve to death, so long as you do not forcibly prevent him from obtaining food on his own. Or, at least, it implies that it would be wrong for others to, say, trespass on your property in order to give the child you’re deliberately starving a piece of bread"

Women lose interest in sex after a year — unless couples keep talking - "Sydney-based sex and relationship therapist Cyndi Darnell said desire can evaporate if a relationship is only based on lust but long-term sexual­ desire was more complicated. “Lust is only one reason people have sex … the reasons people have sex is because they feel obliged to, because it’s the glue for the relationship, the partner wants it and occasionally it’s because they’re horny”
Enthusiastic consent only works in short term relationships

The Gunpowder Plot | Podcast | History Extra - "We think of this as being a place of administrators and politicians. In the early seventeenth century there were private houses in the Palace of Westminster, there were taverns. In Henry the Eighth's reign there was even a functioning brothel right within the Palace of Westminster... that supplies a context to how it was that Guy Fawkes and his fellow conspirators were able to sneak in and put that gunpowder under the House of Lords"

The death of Stalin | Podcast | History Extra - "There was no really effective medical treatment in the West or of course in the Soviet Union for high blood pressure. There were none of the medications that we are used to now. Plus he was not taking his doctor's advice for rest. He actually had arrested a number of the doctors who had been treating him and members of the inner circle as part of this notorious doctors' plot that had been announced in January of 1953. This also compromised his health care...
The rules of the dacha were that no one was to enter Stalin's private quarters, his private rooms without being summoned. This was part of his security scheme... They asked an elderly woman housekeeper who worked for many years at the dacha to enter Stalin's private quarters to see what was going on. They figured that if Stalin was conscious and okay he would be the least alarmed to see her. He wouldn't grab a gun and shoot her. Well she found him on the floor. He'd obviously collapsed. He was lying in his own urine, he was only semi conscious...
They called members of the Politburo, they did not call doctors... They said look Stalin's sleeping, he's snoring. Why did you bother us? Why are you worrying? And they left. They did not call medical, for medical help...
They had to follow his instructions. The idea that they could act spontaneously in a human way, they understood something was wrong. In a normal society they would have gone in the door, knocked on the door heavily, done something to get his attention and to be on the lookout for his health, his well being. But in the Soviet Union under Stalin there was such an atmosphere of fear and intimidation that if Stalin gave an order not to enter his quarters they wouldn't do it"

The search for King Arthur | Podcast | History Extra - "In Geoffrey's book Arthur represents about one third of the text, he is the big hero to whom the story is building up to and of course everyone's trying to identify who the real Arthur is and felt there's no smoke without fire. There must be an historical Arthur because there's so many stories about him and they've tried to go back to the fifth and sixth century and try to find him archaeologically. What I've tried to do is to go back to the first person who mentions him who is Geoffrey and say what does he say about Arthur and how does that fit in the context of his book? And what we can see is that everything that happens to Arthur has already happened to at least five other people... he's five separate individuals and the key one is a chap called Ambrosius Aurelianus"

‘Celtic Superhero’: King Arthur was actually created for 12th C Britons, study claims - "The five characters in question are Ambrosius Aurelianus who lived in the late 400s, Roman general Magnus Maximus, Roman emperor Constantine the Great and prehistoric warlords Arvirargus and Cassivellaunus."

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, Eugene Onegin - "The big question for Russia in Pushkin's lifetime was how could an autocratic monarchy cope with the challenge posed by the French Revolution? In other words how do Tsars who in theory have no restriction on their power cope with a world in which multinational empires are threatened by nation states and in which a whole series of new radical democratic and liberal ideas come up?...
He was joining things like a Masonic Lodge... in those days this was a place for liberal minded people to meet. He was hobnobbing with well a former girlfriend of Byron's. He was writing lots of poetry including a blasphemous poem called The Gabrieliad in which the Archangel Gabriel has a bit of hanky panky with the Virgin Mary...
'Somebody said in one of your notes that 'We write love letters in French, we work, we go to work in German and we talk to our servants in Russian'
'I think it's that we shout at our servants in Russian'...
She actually of course speaks and reads in French. We're told that she resists Russian like a lot of ladies, Pushkin says. And the more we learn about Russia at the time that certainly seems to be true. There seems to be absolutely no contradiction even in an era of Romantic nationalism between patriotism and Russianess and speaking in French. In this case French isn't to do with affectation or fecklessness at all it's to do with that, and there's a reason for that and that is that in this period in order to be Russian you have to be a citizen of the wider world. You have to have this involvement with the big cosmopolitan world as a whole. And the reason why Eugene Onegin was immediately received as a very important piece of literature by Belinsky for example, a great Russian critic was that here somehow Pushkin managed to synthesize the sort of folk elements and the superstitious stuff that we've been talking about with the greater literary tradition"

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, al-Biruni - "The Greeks and the Indians share the same effective set of beliefs. He thinks that the Greeks have progressed more than the Indians have... he puts the blame very firmly on their language, on Sanskrit and it's the tendency to rely on synonyms and homonyms as opposed to exact terminology. So he thinks that there is something not scientific about Sanskrit... Islam of course is at the top"

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, The Congress of Vienna - "They'd gone to war with France back in seventeen ninety three, when Edmund Burke had told the House of Commons that the Netherlands can be regarded as much a part of England as the county of Kent"

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, Germaine de Stael - "This is a text which is for the revolutionaries: think about this politically, think about the fact that if you kill Marie Antoinette who after all is only the Queen Consort - you know she just happened to have been married to the king, she had no political power at all. If you kill her as a political figure you're turning her into one. So that means you're making her into a martyr and you're giving her an importance which in a sense the Ancien Regime didn't give her and if she's a martyr figure people will unite around her. And you know the whole fashion around Marie Antoinette nowadays I think is in large part due to fact that she was executed"

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Links - 24th April 2018 (2)

UK water firms admit using divining rods to find leaks and pipes - "Ten of the 12 water companies in the UK have admitted they are still using the practice of water dowsing despite the lack of scientific evidence for its effectiveness."

Do not refer to female pupils as 'girls' or 'ladies' because it 'reminds them of their gender', headteachers told - "Teachers should not refer to pupils as “girls" or "ladies” because it means they are “constantly reminded of their gender”, the Government’s former mental health tsar has said... Ms Devon said that another reason not to use gendered terms like girls or boys is because there may be transgender people in the room."

Piers Morgan: For God's sake let boys be boys - "what I don't support is the creeping eradication of conventional gender altogether, as if somehow it is a bad thing. This new gender war is being driven by the radical transgender community, which - like radical feminism to non-radical feminism - is a very different, far more aggressive, loud and extreme group to the non-radical transgender community. They basically want anyone, including very young children at school, to be free to identify how the hell they like, and their campaign has been undeniably successful. That's why Facebook currently provides over 70 different gender 'options', from 'two-spirit person' to 'neutrois' and 'transmasculine'. One is simply: 'neither'. Now, I don't care if adults want to identify themselves as giraffes or parrots if it makes them happy. That is their right, so long as they abide by the laws of the land. But I do care when massive pressure is applied on the rest of us to stop using words like 'boys' and 'girls' because it may offend the gender fluid brigade. I also care that kids as young as five are being encouraged to embark on a journey to change their gender and/or sex before they even really know what either of things even mean. Anyone who's had children knows they go through all kinds of confusing emotional turmoil before, during and after puberty. Why add to that confusion by making them think that 'boys' and 'girls' are offensive terms? There are so many obvious unresolved problems with this surging transgender activism. Some schools have begun eliminating gender distinction in their sports programmes, so any boy who feels he's a girl can play on the girls' team. This obviously puts most female athletes at an immediate physical disadvantage. Other schools now allow boys who identify as girls (apologies to anyone offended by those words…obviously) to use the female bathrooms. How can that do anything but create huge unease and discomfort? Companies are being bullied and harangued into converting to non-gender-specific merchandise lest they get branded 'trans bigots' on social media. We see it in our high street stores and on our TV commercials. The problem gets even more acute when we consider sexual offenders in prison. Already, we are getting cases of male rapists identifying as female so they can switch to female prisons. It doesn't take a genius to work out why they may want to do that."
When "respecting" others (as with the Perak Mufti) means you need to re-engineer yourself, one needs to ask whether it's really about respect

Teen Vogue columnist ‘not at all concerned’ about innocent men and false harassment allegations – twitchy.com - "'If some innocent men's reputations have to take a hit in the process of undoing the patriarchy, that is a price I am absolutely willing to pay. '... So much for due process then, at least for men accused of sexual harassment."
We all have enough strength to endure the misfortunes of others
Maybe Emily Lindin will pay the price when she is accused of a crime and no longer can benefit from the presumption of innocence. Or maybe when the "patriarchy" collapses and she no longer gets subsidies
Again, this is another verified Twitter account


Schools are banning best friends to protect students' feelings - "Critics, however, say the approach robs kids of the chance to form valuable coping skills. By grappling with mild social exclusion when they’re young, kids will emerge as more capable, resilient adults, these advocates argue... A wealth of research indicates best friends create value for people throughout their lives. One study recently published in Child Development found people with best friends enjoyed better mental health well into adulthood."

Did Disney push for EA’s Battlefront microtransaction decision? - "Disney executives were "upset at how online outrage over the costs of gaining access to popular characters such as Luke Skywalker reflected on their marquee property.""

Belgium says loot boxes are gambling, wants them banned in Europe

How Pixar’s Coco Honors Mexico—and Defies Trump - "Garcia Bernal—who made reference to Trump at the Oscars in February by declaring, “As a Mexican, as a Latin-American, as a migrant worker, as a human being, I’m against any form of wall that separates us”—refused to even acknowledge Trump and his politics."
So Mexicans are all illegal immgirants?

Donald Trump: 'I love Mexican people' - "Donald Trump visited the US Border with Mexico and declared that he "loves" Hispanic people despite recent controversial comments in which he called illegal immigrants "criminals" and rapists"... "I employ thousands and thousands of Hispanics. I love the people. They're great workers. They're fantastic people and they want legal immigration.""

Toronto school board hiring push a setback for white women - "Ontario school boards are struggling to hire enough male and minority teachers to reflect the diversity of their student body, making it harder for young white female teachers to find jobs. Educators and parents were shocked at a memo circulated earlier this month from the Toronto District School Board that suggested candidates should be male, from visible minorities or aboriginal to get an interview for a full-time teaching position"

WATCH: A North Korean defector makes a daring escape under heavy gunfire - "one North Korean soldier appeared to cross the MDL for a few seconds, and then run back towards the northern side of the line. A multinational UNC commission reportedly conducted a “thorough investigation,” in which it found North Korea and breached the 1953 armistice agreement that ended the Korean War conflict. “The [Korean People’s Army] violated the armistice agreement by one, firing weapons across the MDL, and two, and by actually crossing the MDL,” a spokesman said during a news conference Tuesday... During multiple surgical procedures, doctors found dozens of parasites in his digestive tract, shedding light on the humanitarian crisis in North Korea, even for its soldiers... Upon his recovery, the defector was reportedly not entirely convinced he was in South Korea: “Is this South Korea,” the defector asked, according to sources from the South Korean newspaper Dong-a Ilbo. After he received confirmation that he was in fact in South Korea, he reportedly said he would “like to listen to South Korean songs”"

Leftist Writer: I Hate White People; Let's Not Pretend The U.S. Is Better Than North Korea - "A white writer named Kate Morgan, who seems monumentally concerned about environmental issues, decided to attack the idea of being white on Wednesday, going so far as to say that she hated white culture, didn't like labeling people white, and thought the United States was not much better than North Korea"
And she has the verified tag on Twitter

Sarah Silverman Flips: 'I Fell In Love' With Trump Supporters - ""When you're one-on-one with someone who doesn't agree with you, or whose ideology is different than yours, when you’re face to face, your porcupine needles go down"... "The surprise was," she said, "I fell in love with them. I had a great time with them and I felt comfortable."... Earlier this month, Silverman attempted to convey her connection to conservatives by revealing that she suffered from "survival-based fear" when Trump took office and became a "doomsday" liberal. "In an instant, I basically became a liberal doomsday prepper," she said. "And for the first time, I felt an actual kinship to the far-right militia person who thought Obama would end the world"... Of course, as noted by Daily Wire's Emily Zanotti, conservatives didn't react exactly like liberals; they didn't scream at the sky and smash the windows of their local Starbucks, they won back both houses of Congress and then the White House without the "crippling fear and total lack of sanity that's gripped outspoken Democrats.""

Singapore's 'silver tsunami': how the city-state depends on its elderly workforce - "Her son William has told her not to work like this: 28 days a month, S$1,600 (£900) in total, no overtime. She should be watching TV at home, he says. But she is grateful for the job; it staves off the desolation of empty afternoons, helps put away a little every month in case her leg gives trouble, and eases the financial pressure on her son... every one of the half-dozen pioneers I talk to says they are happy to still be working and earning. As an outsider, this can be hard to understand: at the end of a lifetime of working, why would anybody want to undertake work that involves hard, physical labour at the bottom of the chain of command? But many Singaporeans believe this is the reasonable culmination of an ageing society. Indeed, once you get past the unsettling image of frail people doing manual labour, they believe this is the more dignified option – keeping the elderly active and giving them an independent income. “There is plenty of help available to those who need it, but nobody goes to you offering handouts,” says Alan John, a former deputy editor of The Straits Times. “People have to seek help themselves and it can be hard to navigate the system; to know who to ask, where to go, what forms to fill out.” When I relay this comment to Kuan Ying, she motions urgently to our translator. “Tell her,” she says, “I’ve had my fill of [those forms]. I applied for help after my amputation – nothing. I made 10 applications to get this flat.” “But,” she adds after a few moments, “I am glad they have realised there are poor people in Singapore now. Two years ago, they did not. You tell them, I am glad.”"

Armed Police To Escort Joggers In Swedish City For Protection - "The police inspector’s comments mirror a report from 2016 which stated that close to half of women in Sweden felt “very unsafe” at night alone in Swedish cities. According to the report, conducted by newspaper Aftonbladet, a further 43 per cent felt uncomfortable in Swedish cities even in the daytime. The issue is particularly bad in troubled heavily migrant-populated suburbs which are often labelled no-go zones. A survey conducted by the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brå) claimed that around half of the residents of problem areas were too afraid to leave their homes in the evenings... Karlsson said the officers will be carrying handcuffs as well as weapons as they jog with residents. “We have tried and found a vest that we can fix the equipment to and that works to run in,” he said. As Sweden’s violent crime rate has increasingly become the centre of national attention, more and more unorthodox solutions to the problems have been proposed. Last month, members of the Moderate Party even proposed deploying the military in no-go areas to aid police."

Britain's Christmas markets surrounded by ring of steel - "There will be concrete barriers, stop and search checks and officers on the ground at the popular festive events in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, Edinburgh and Bath in the run up to Christmas. The precautions are being taken after the Local Government Association warned councils to be vigilant this year with the terror threat level to the UK currently at 'severe' - meaning an incident is 'highly likely'."
"When you don't build walls on your border, you build them in your cities."

The Bad American Habits I Kicked in Finland - "1. I don’t fear awkward silences.
2. I don’t say things I don’t mean.
3. I don’t leave food on my plate.
4. I don’t take coffee to go.
5. I don’t feel uncomfortable in my own skin."

What Hong Kong has to learn from the rise and fall of Manila - "Founded by Spanish conquistadors in 1571, the outpost quickly became a major metropolis that linked Asia with America. Manila hit the jackpot of history, so to speak, as the world was just about to witness the first wave of global trade."
Basically it's not your fault if you decline - it's larger global patterns

Filmmaker Visits UC Berkeley With Huge American And ISIS Flags. Guess The Students' Reaction. - "In a disturbing video which he made on the campus of the University of California, Berkeley, filmmaker Ami Horowitz reveals how sick the leftists are on the campus with their fervent anti-Americanism. Horowitz stood on the campus holding a huge American flag while calling out paeans to American greatness. That elicited some shocking responses from some of the students, including: “The opposite. The complete opposite.” “Uh, Canada’s pretty great.” “The one imperial power in the world.” “It signifies military rule.” “God is not proud of us.” “Your flag sucks, fool.” “F*** America.” “God f*** this country.” And one charming anti-Semite who snapped, “I seen you walking around here with your little Star of David, you s**thead.” Horowitz then tested the temperature of anti-Americanism by brandishing a huge ISIS flag, all the while singing the praises of ISIS. These were some of the responses he received: “Good for you, man. Good for you.” “I love that you’re saying that.” Horowitz later noted that he waved the ISIS flag for hours and elicited only one negative reaction. Three years ago, Horowitz visited UC Berkeley and performed a similar experiment using the Israeli flag and the flag of ISIS. Sure enough, some students accused the Israelis of being “killers,” tyrannical and guilty of genocide.
I'm sure under some tortured logic, if you say "God fuck this country" it doesn't mean that you hate your country but that you love it

South Korea students forced to date in attempt to lift birth rate - "Professor Jang Jae-sook, who founded a “Marriage and Family” course at Dongguk University, said students were being taught how to find the right partner and sustain healthy relationships... The crude marriage rate - the annual number of marriages per 1,000 people - was 5.5 last year, compared with 295.1 when statistics began in 1970."

Lookout Falls From Tree - "Police caught two of the men in Franklin Park “after an unsuccessful attempt to pose as shrubbery.”"

A question of ethnics - "Since the Race Relations (Amendment) Act of 2000, bodies like national parks have been compelled to ensure that they discriminate against no one. And so, in 2001, the Council for National Parks formed the Mosaic Project to organise ethnic minority outings into the hills and dales. The Lake District National Park even announced it would axe its free guided walks because they seemed to attract only white hikers, although this decision was later rescinded. But these steps were deemed insufficient by the government’s rural watchdog, the Countryside Agency... there was a ‘passive apartheid’ in the countryside. Country pursuits were targeted at ‘white, middle-aged, middle-class people’, the review said. Minority groups were not ‘comfortable’ when visiting the countryside; it was not a ‘welcome’ place for them... The writer Hanif Kureishi has said that his family would never have gone walking in the countryside when they moved from Bombay to Bromley, because they considered it demeaning for middle-class Indians to traipse about like peasants... Many of them grew up in steamy South Asia and East Africa and dislike the English weather... ‘It’s superficial nonsense and won’t change anything. It looks like taking busloads of prisoners to the countryside,’ says Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones, a Cornish farmer. His view is pertinent, because Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones is Britain’s only black farmer... He believes that declaring the countryside unwelcome to ethnic minorities helps no one. ‘There’s the black intellectual set, making a living out of making the host community feel guilty,’ he says, arguing that white liberals should not let themselves be manipulated. ‘We’ve got to stop having these woolly schemes — so much money goes into them.’ Black people too often forget, he says, that their parents and grandparents were pioneers who created Britain’s first ethnic communities in overwhelmingly white cities. ‘But the second and third generations seem to feel that they are stuck in those ghettos,’ he says. ‘They need to take some responsibility for themselves, and stop feeling like victims.’ Mr Emmanuel-Jones believes that the only way for ethnic minorities to become attuned to the countryside is for them to live and work in it. He has set up a scheme whereby black urban teenagers work on his farm for weeks at a time. ‘I was amazed by their prejudice at first,’ he says. ‘They come expecting racism and see it every time someone looks at them. They were used to manipulating white liberals, but they couldn’t manipulate me.’"

» Is the Countryside Racist? - "here, perhaps, is one reason why you don’t see many Punjabis trekking over England’s green and pleasant land: they have a fundamentally utilitarian view of the environment... The sight of one of the largest expanses of heather moorland in the United Kingdom prompts the question, “Why haven’t they farmed the land?” “They want to keep it nice,” I say. “For people to visit.” “But there’s no one around.”... it’s necessary to acknowledge the most popular hypothesis on why we don’t visit the countryside: because the countryside is racist. It’s a proposition that was put forward in 2007 by Liverpool University’s Professor Ann Jacoby, whose research condemned village communities for “harbouring discrimination and hostility”; in 2005 by the Countryside Agency, which complained the countryside is not seen as a “welcoming place by ethnic minorities”; and in 2004 by Trevor Phillips, who sparked a storm when he talked of “passive apartheid”, and argued “the low number of black and Asian people living in rural areas” meant there was a danger that the countryside could become a “no-go area” for ethnic minorities... “One lady in Widecombe said she was fed up with all the foreigners moving in… But she didn’t mean people from different ethnic backgrounds, she meant people from Newton Abbot.” Indeed, it is significant that, of the people with whom I raise the issue during the slowest walk in human history, not one cites racism. And the complexity of the issue is demonstrated by the variety of alternative explanations. “Our communities have a culture of visiting each other and shopping,” argues one Community Champion. “There’s a perception that the country is for the retired and well-off,” says another. “There’s confusion between the National Trust and National Parks… People think they have to pay,” says yet another... the Campaign for National Parks describes itself as a charity that exists “to protect and promote National Parks for the benefit and quiet enjoyment of all”. We Punjabis are incapable of doing anything quietly."
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