When you can't live without bananas

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Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Links - 12th February 2019

How China Is Rewriting Its Own Script - The New York Times - "China’s booming box office and seemingly inexhaustible cash reserves have provided a much-needed boost to Hollywood as it faces slowing ticket sales in the United States and challenges from Amazon and Netflix.But Hollywood’s embrace of China has not come without strings attached.So when the creators of “Pixels” wanted to show aliens blasting a hole in the Great Wall of China, Sony executives worried that the scene might prevent the 2015 movie’s release in China, leaked studio emails show. They blew up the Taj Mahal instead... As recently as two decades ago, major Hollywood movies were sharply critical of China... At stake for China is more than just the validation of Hollywood’s powerbrokers and celebrities. In speeches and at forums, President Xi Jinping has repeatedly emphasized the need to “tell China’s story well” — to make sure a coherent, compelling and, most important, Communist Party-sanctioned narrative of China’s rise to power reaches global audiences... It is difficult to tell whether China’s push to soften its image through movies, media and cultural projects has been successful."

How to Talk to People, According to Terry Gross - The New York Times - "“Tell me about yourself,”
a.k.a the only icebreaker you’ll ever need...
The beauty in opening with “tell me about yourself” is that it allows you to start a conversation without the fear that you’re going to inadvertently make someone uncomfortable or self-conscious. Posing a broad question lets people lead you to who they are..
The secret to being a good conversationalist?
Be funny (if you can).
Preparation is key.
Take control by pivoting to something you want to talk about.
Ms. Gross doesn’t want you to dodge questions.But if you’re going to, here’s how.
Terry pays attention to body language.Be like Terry.
When to push back,and when not to"

Santa sacked ahead of Sunday's Christmas parade after 'inappropriate' comments on women - NZ Herald - "Organisers of Auckland's Christmas parade are ditching its longstanding Santa, after the man behind the beard said he wouldn't hire women to play Father Christmas... A spokesperson for the Human Rights Commission said sex was a "prohibited ground of discrimination" under the Act.But there were a number of circumstances where it would not be unlawful to discriminate on the ground of gender, like if the role involved counselling on personal matters, or a combat role in armed forces."For reasons of authenticity" was also included in the list."
Does this mean it's okay to 'whitewash' roles?

Apple Sucked Tumblr Into Its Walled Garden, Where Sex Is Bad - "the Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that claims Apple holds illegal monopoly power over iOS’s App Store and thus over the apps that are used on iPhones. Today, Tumblr announced that it would no longer allow porn on its platform after December 17. With its massive distribution and strict rules, Apple’s App Store has had a broad homogenizing and sanitizing effect on the internet... there are fewer and fewer mainstream sites and services that support porn and adult content, and much of that attitude has grown out of Apple’s strict controls over the App Store and the iOS ecosystem... In 2016, Apple famously deleted all third-party Reddit apps that allowed users to toggle NSFW posts on and off; even now, it is impossible to access porn on an iOS Reddit app unless you jump through various hoops... Tumblr’s decision is even more disappointing because it’s obvious in D’Onofrio’s explanation that Tumblr leadership does not understand the important role that Tumblr held in the adult content community... This is yet another example of a platform ignoring adult content when it helps the platform flourish, and then leaving those users out to dry when it’s time to crack down for some monetary gain or face-saving. In addition to being a terrible way to treat your user base, banning adult content on Tumblr will stifle a lot of creativity... “As someone who makes computer-based art, I worry a lot about preservation, and it kinda makes me wonder how much art and culture is getting destroyed here. Erotic art and sexuality is especially over-policed by platforms, by credit card companies, by fucked up laws like FOSTA.” The communities that will feel this change the most will be the already-marginalized. “Tumblr banning adult content is a huge loss for the LGBTQ community, especially those with overlapping marginalized identities”"

Vienna Symphony violist has finger broken by subway thugs - "Michael Buchmann, a viola player in the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, was catching a U4 Karlsplatz train home at midnight when he smelt smoking. He pointed out to three young men, reportedly of Middle Eastern appearance, that smoking was forbidden on public transport. One of them responded with a karate kick aimed at his hand, breaking his ring finger."

Asylum seeker crime spikes in Austria, official statistics show - "There has been a steep jump in the number of criminal incidents involving asylum seekers over the past few years, according to preliminary data from the Austrian interior ministry.The figures vary by nationality. According to the statistics, released by the Federal Ministry of the Interior after a request from Rupert Doppler of the right-wing FPO party, Syrians are relatively unlikely to come into contact with law enforcement, while Afghans, Nigerians and Moroccans are far more likely."

RAPES SOAR IN AUSTRIA: HALF BY FOREIGNERS - "The Austrian government has released new crime statistics that show sex attacks have risen by more than 25 per cent since last year and that migrants make up close to half of all known suspects in sex crime cases...
Austria has just elected an anti-immigration government. Any surprise?"

Alice Smith on Twitter: "Thanks … " - "Being fat isn’t your fault.
Getting pregnant as a teen isn’t your fault.
Flunking out of high school isn’t your fault.
Having STDs isn’t your fault.
But having an ancestor half a millennium ago whose feudal lord owned a slave, that’s totally on you."
Technically they claim that it's not your fault, but they still hate you as if it were. More accurate would be changing "fault" to "responsibility"

Sex ratio effects on reproductive strategies in humans - "even within a single ethnic group, male mating effort varies in predictable ways with the ASR. At male-biased sex ratios, men's and women's investment in mating effort are indistinguishable; only when men are in the minority are they more inclined towards short-term, low investment relationships than women. Our results support the behavioural ecological tenet that reproductive strategies are predictable and contingent on varying situational factors."

Imam Tawhidi on Twitter - "My situation:
1. They say Islam has nothing to do with terrorism.
2. As a Muslim, I say “Okay”, and begin to criticize extremists and terrorists.
3. I am then accused of insulting Islam.
But you just said terrorists have nothing to do with Islam!?

The Trans Women Who Become Lesbians After Years as Gay Men - "There aren't many people who are fortunate enough to have lived their lives first as gay men and later as lesbian women. Alison* is one of them... once she got testosterone out of her system, she no longer felt like she absolutely had to have sex—or, as she puts it, that "cloud of incessant horniness dissipated.""Having testosterone in my body made me need sexual release to an extent I found embarrassing and shameful," Alison said, explaining that some days her sexual urges would cause her to masturbate multiple times... Today, Alison is primarily attracted to cisgender women, but she can also be into trans women. In a way, sex with trans women is easier for her. "I've noticed that my sexuality is more into ass stuff and dick than most cis dykes are usually into, which can be a bit of a pain," Alison explained, "so being into trans girls makes that work for me.""
Funny, I thought sexual orientation was fixed and any talk of it changing was unethical conversion therapy. And that it was patriarchy that determined male sexual behavior

Why Single-Payer Health Care Delivers Poor Quality at High Cost - Foundation for Economic Education
Funny how this doesn't actually look at countries with single payer healthcare (or indeed an actual single payer health care system)
Libertarian logic: "It works in practice. But it doesn't work in theory. Therefore it cannot work ever"

Comparing the Costs of the Veterans' Health Care System with Private-Sector Costs | Congressional Budget Office - "One useful analytic approach, which was most carefully and comprehensively employed by researchers in 2004, estimates what costs would be if private-sector doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers supplied the same number and types of services as those actually delivered by VHA. Similar to earlier studies, those researchers concluded that the health care provided by VHA generally cost less than would equivalent care provided in the private sector, even though the comparison used Medicare's relatively low payment rates for private-sector doctors and hospitals."

Examining the Quality and Cost of VA Health Care - "Most evidence presented supports the assertion that VA is less expensive than both Medicare and private healthcare solutions
The report states that it relies on data analytics between 1999 and earlier, and is unable to confirm that the same cost saving conditions still exist. It also mentions VA’s overhaul in the early 1990’s, the reform that was led by then Undersecretary for Health Kenneth Kizer that transformed VHA into the world-class healthcare system that it is today, but fails to point out that the reports that support VA’s cost savings analyses were conducted after this transformation, which represents one of the largest public investments in VHA in history.
The analysis indicates that VHA represents a cost savings when comparing physician care, and pharmaceuticals, but was unable to compare “other medical goods and services”.
CBO recognizes that private-sector physicians are financially motivated to deliver a larger amount of services which typically represent duplication or unnecessary expenses, and further finds that private-sector providers have strong financial incentives to provide more expensive care than VHA providers, who have no such incentives[4].
While providing more services and reimbursements, VA costs are lower than Medicare costs “but they still found that they “could not price many services...for which a private sector system would charge.”[5] The costs of those services were still counted as costs for VHA but were not included when calculating costs at Medicare’s payment rates, which means that VHA’s cost advantage may have been underestimated.”
The full range of services that VHA provided in 1999 would have cost about 21 percent more if those services had been delivered through the private sector at Medicare’s payment rates (pg. 5).
Inpatient care (excluding costs for nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities) would have cost about 16 percent more if it had been purchased at Medicare’s rates (pg. 5).
The outpatient care provided by VHA would have cost about 11 percent more if it had been provided at Medicare’s prices (pg. 5).
Prescription drugs would have cost about 70 percent more using a combination of Medicaid’s and Medicare’s payment methods (pg. 5)."

The Screen - Posts - "Breathless: I Rang In My 30s With a Foursome" - 2015
"How Did I Become the Last Single Person in My Friend Group?" - 2017
Addendum: The same writer, Karley Sciortino in 2013: "on a daily basis I ask myself, “Should I become a whore?”"

So many times patients have accused ER nurses of... - Tammera Bain Jordan - "So many times patients have accused ER nurses of not paying attention to them in the waiting room...
That "poor lady" that I just let lay there screaming and "having a seizure on the waiting room floor" was a VERY frequent flyer and drug seeker that I had already seen earlier in the day and 3 times that week. Her seizure was fake. She didn't need another full work up or IV Valium/Ativan nor did she need to go to the back before the quiet gentlemen with the ever so slightly ashen skin that was having a silent MI (heart attack) in my waiting room.
The "little white girl" that there "ain't nothin' wrong with" I chose to take back immediately and well before the people who had been waiting an hour...well she wasn't actually white at all. She was a faint shade of blue. The newer nurses didn't notice. Her PO2 was 22 and she had a bilateral fungal pneumonia. She ended up with bilateral pneumothoracies (collapsed lungs) and bilateral chest tubes and was transferred by helicopter to Children's where she died after a few days on ECMO. To this day I just don't understand how she was conscious and able to answer my questions. It doesn't make sense.
And that hysterical woman who "passed out" that we "made sit out in the waiting room" was faking it. A little noxious stimuli was all she needed. We weren't ignoring a critical syncope patient. We were prioritizing the sickest first.
And, by the way, I'm sorry you have a kidney stone. I know it hurts like hell and I wish I could do two things at once. But I have to keep this man with a heart rate of 20 alive. Just because he's quiet and not screaming doesn't mean he's not dying. It's often the quiet ones, you know. I DO care about your pain. But death trumps pain."

Progressive Education in the USA

Public Education’s Dirty Secret

"Bad teaching is a common explanation given for the disastrously inadequate public education received by America’s most vulnerable populations. This is a myth. Aside from a few lemons who were notable for their rarity, the majority of teachers I worked with for nine years in New York City’s public school system were dedicated, talented professionals...

I worked at three very different high schools over the years, spanning a fairly representative sample. That was a while ago now, but the system has not improved since, as the fundamental problem has not been acknowledged, let alone addressed. It would not be hard, or expensive, to fix...

The school always teetered on the verge of chaos. The previous principal had just been dismissed and shunted to another school district. Although it was never stated, all that was expected of teachers was to keep students in their seats and the volume down. This was an enormous school on five floors, with students cordoned off into separate programs. There was even a short-lived International Baccalaureate Program, but it quickly failed. Whatever the program, however, the atmosphere of the school was one of danger and deceit. Guards patrolled the hallways, sometimes the police had to intervene. Even though the security guards carefully screened the students at the metal detectors posted at every entrance, occasionally arms crept in. Girls sometimes managed to get razors in, the weapon of choice against rivals for boys’ attention. Although I don’t know of other arms found in the school (teachers were kept in the dark as much as possible), one particularly disruptive and dangerous boy was stabbed one afternoon right outside school. It appears he came to a violent death a few years later. What a tragic waste of human potential.

As the weeks dragged painfully into months, it became apparent that the students wouldn’t learn anything. It was dumbfounding. It was all I could do to keep them quiet; that is, seated and talking among themselves. Sometimes I had to stop girls from grooming themselves or each other. A few brave souls tried to keep up with instruction. A particularly good history teacher once told me that she interrupted a conversation between two girls, asking them to pay attention to the lesson. One of them looked up at her scornfully and sneered, “I don’t talk to teachers,” turning her back to resume their chat. She told me that the best school she ever worked at was in Texas, where her principal managed not only to suspend the most disruptive students for long periods, he also made sure they were not admitted during that time to any other school in the district. It worked; they got good results.

This was unthinkable in New York, where “in-house suspension” was the only punitive measure. It would be “discriminatory” to keep the students at home. The appropriate paperwork being filed, the most outrageously disruptive students went for a day or two to a room with other serious offenders. The anti-discrimination laws under which we worked took all power away from the teachers and put it in the hands of the students.

Throughout Washington Irving there was an ethos of hostile resistance. Those who wanted to learn were prevented from doing so. Anyone who “cooperated with the system” was bullied. No homework was done. Students said they couldn’t do it because if textbooks were found in their backpacks, the offending students would be beaten up. This did not appear to be an idle threat. Too many students told their teachers the same thing. There were certainly precious few books being brought home.

I tried everything imaginable to overcome student resistance. Nothing worked. At one point I rearranged the seating to enable the students who wanted to engage to come to the front of the classroom. The principal was informed and I was reprimanded. This was “discriminatory.” The students went back to their chosen seats near their friends. Aside from imposing order, the only thing I succeeded at was getting the students to stand silently during the Pledge of Allegiance and mumble a few songs in French...

The abuse from students never let up. We were trained to absorb it. By the time I left, however, I had a large folder full of the complaint forms I’d filled out documenting the most egregious insults and harassment. There was a long process to go through each time. The student had a parent or other representative to state their case at the eventual hearing and I had my union rep. I lost every case.

Actually, the girls were meaner than the boys. The latter did not engage at all. They simply ignored me. Except for the delinquents among them, the boys didn’t make trouble. The girls on the other hand could be malicious. One girl even called me a “fucking white bitch.” It was confidence-destroying and extremely stressful. I was often reported to the principal for one transgression or another, like taking a sheet of paper from a student. Once I was even reprimanded for calmly taking my own cellphone from a girl who’d held on to it for half an hour, refusing all my requests to hand it back. The administration was consistently on the side of the student. The teacher was the fall guy, every time.

The abuse ranged from insults to outright violence, although I myself was never physically attacked. Stories abounded, however, of hard substances like bottles of water being thrown at us, teachers getting smacked on the head from behind, pushed in stairwells, and having doors slammed in our faces. The language students used was consistently obscene. By far the most commonly heard word throughout the school, literally hundreds of times a day, like a weapon fired indiscriminately, was “nigga.”...

The kids didn’t listen to me in either French or English. But they had a certain begrudging respect for me, I think because I told them the truth. I’d plead with them, “Look, kids, you’re destroying yourselves. Yes, the system stinks, but it’s the only show in town. Please, please don’t do this to yourselves. Education is your only way out.” But it was useless. I didn’t possess whatever magic some teachers have that explains their success, however limited.

Aside from the history teacher from Texas, other Washington Irving educators stood out as extraordinary, and this in an unimaginably bad learning environment. One was a cheerful Lebanese math teacher who had been felled as a child by polio. He called himself “the million dollar man” because of his handicapped parking permit, quite a handy advantage in Manhattan. Although he could only walk on crutches, he kept those kids in line! His secret? A lovely way about him and complete but polite disdain for his students. Where he came from, students were not allowed to act that way. Another was a German teacher, the wife of a Lutheran minister. Her imposing presence—she fit the valkyrie stereotype—kept those mouths closed. You could hear a pin drop in her unusually tidy classroom, and she managed to teach some German to the few hardy souls who wanted to learn it...

Everyone knew that once the kids hit puberty, it became virtually impossible under the laws in force to teach those who were steeped in ghetto and gangster culture, and those—the majority—who were bullied into succumbing to it.

Students came to school for their social life. The system had to be resisted. It was never made explicit that it was a “white” system that was being rejected, but it was implicit in oft-made remarks. Youngsters would say things like, “You can’t say that word, that be a WHITE word!” It did no good to remind students that some of the finest oratory in America came from black leaders like Martin Luther King and some of the best writing from authors like James Baldwin. I would tell them that there was nothing wrong with speaking one’s own dialect; dialects in whatever language tend to be colorful and expressive, but it was important to learn standard English as well. It opens minds and doors. Every new word learned adds to one’s wealth, and there’s nothing like grammar for organizing one’s thoughts.

It all fell on deaf ears. It was impossible to dispel the students’ delusions. Astonishingly, they believed that they would do just fine and have great futures once they got to college! They didn’t seem to know that they had very little chance of getting into anything but a community college, if that. Sadly, the kids were convinced of one thing: As one girl put it, “I don’t need an 85 average to get into Hunter; I’m black, I can get in with a 75.” They were actually encouraged to be intellectually lazy.

The most Dantesque scene I witnessed at Washington Irving was a “talent show” staged one spring afternoon. The darkened auditorium was packed with excited students, jittery guidance counselors, teachers, and guards. Music blasted from the loudspeakers, ear-splitting noise heightened the frenzy. To my surprise and horror, the only talent on display was merely what comes naturally. Each act was a show of increasingly explicit dry humping. As each group of performers vied with the previous act to be more outrageous, chaos was breaking out in the screaming audience. Some bright person in charge finally turned off the sound, shut down the stage lights, and lit up the auditorium, causing great consternation among the kids, but it quelled the growing mass hysteria. The students came to their senses. The guards (and NYC policemen if memory serves) managed to usher them out to safety.

Once, on two consecutive days, enormous Snapple dispensers on a mezzanine were pushed to the floor below. Vending machines had to be removed for the students’ safety. On another occasion, two chairs were chucked out of the building, injuring a woman below. Bad press and silly excuses ensued. Another time, word spread that a gang of girls was going to beat up a Mexican girl. There was a huge crush of students who preferred to skip the next class to go see the brawl. The hallway was packed, there was pushing and shoving, causing a stampede. I was caught in it and fell to the ground; kids stepped over me elbowing each other in the crush of bodies...

Shortly thereafter, the teachers union (United Federation of Teachers, or UFT) fought the Department of Education, which had recently loosened the already lax disciplinary rulings. They organized a press conference and asked me to speak at it about the worsening security situation. The principal refused me permission to leave even though my supportive assistant principal found a fellow language teacher to take over my classes. As soon as school was out, though, a union rep implored me to rush downtown with him as the press conference was still going on. Questioned by reporters in front of the cameras, I spoke about the stampede. There was a brief segment on the local evening news. The principal was furious, and the next morning screamed at me in the lobby that I was a publicity seeker who just wanted to give the school a bad name. However, the UFT was successful in this case, as the former, less inadequate disciplinary measures were restored, and things went back to their usual level of simmering chaos...

Brooklyn Tech was considered one of New York’s “top three” high schools. Students had to test in... The new principal ended the unruly after-school program that purportedly prepared underprivileged children for the entrance exam. Disruptive behavior subsequently dropped considerably...

Victory Collegiate High School seemed promising. It could boast of Bill Gates money, and was one of only two or three new experimental schools co-located in what was once the venerable South Shore High School. It served the local, partly middle-class, partly ghettoized black community. The principal informed me proudly that the students wore uniforms, and no cellphones were allowed. The classes were tiny in comparison to other high schools, and there were no disciplinary problems.

Despite the devastating blow to my career, I set out hopefully on the long commute to Canarsie. The metal detectors should have clued me in. Any pretense of imposing uniforms was eventually abandoned. Cellphones were a constant nuisance. Administrators turned a blind eye to the widespread anti-social behavior.

It would be repetitive to go over the plentiful examples of the abuse teachers suffered at the hands of the students. Suffice it to say, it was Washington Irving all over again, but in miniature. The principal talked a good game, believing that giving “shout-outs” and being a pal to the students were accomplishing great things, but he actually had precious little control over them. What made matters worse, the teaching corps was a young, idealistic group, largely recruited from the non-profit Teach For America, not the leathery veterans who constituted a majority at the two previous schools. I was a weird anomaly to these youngsters. What? I didn’t feel pity for these poor children? I didn’t take it for granted that they would abuse us? The new teachers were fervent believers in the prevailing ideology that the students’ bad behavior was to be expected, and that we should educate them without question according to the hip attitudes reflected in the total absence of good literature or grammar, and a sense of history that emphasized grievance.

One example of the “literature” we were expected to teach was as racist as it was obscene. The main character was an obese, pregnant 14 year-old dropout. The argot in which it was written was probably not all that familiar to many of the students. Appalled, I asked an English teacher why the students had to read this rubbish. She was shocked at the question: we have to teach “literature the kids can relate to.” Why on earth did the school system believe that such a depraved environment as depicted in this book was representative of the very mixed group of families that inhabited the area, many of whom were led by middle-class professionals from the Caribbean? The “language arts” department (the word “English” was too Euro-centric) made one obligatory bow to Shakespeare—a version of “Romeo and Juliet” reduced to a few hundred words. It was common knowledge that the Bard was “overrated.”

My small classes faced a large photograph of Barack Obama displayed proudly in front of the classroom over the title “Notre Président.” The picture resonated as little with the students as the Pledge of Allegiance...

On one memorable occasion, I said to them: “You are not here to play, you are here to develop your intellect.” The puzzled stares this remark elicited spoke volumes. It seemed an utterly new concept to them...

Students sat for the preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test that all juniors were required to do in preparation for the real thing in the spring... When the language section was over and the math part began, however, students stopped working. They sat there staring at the desk. I quietly encouraged them to make an effort, but the general response was, “I ain’t doin’ it, miss, it’s too hard.” I could not get them to change their minds; they sat doing nothing for the rest of my shift.

The preliminary test results that came back in the spring were abysmally low—despite the fact that every single response bubble on the math test had been filled in. Either the next proctor forced the kids to randomly fill in the bubbles, or some administrators did so, another example of the rampant deceit the school system indulges.

After the terrible 2010 earthquake in Haiti, a number of Haitians joined the school. These youngsters were remarkable for their good manners and desire to learn, for their outstanding gentility in fact. They provided a most refreshing change, but it didn’t last. They quickly fell into the trap of hostile resistance.

By June, things were really depressing. Not only was the academic year an utter failure, word spread that 10 girls had become pregnant. Since there were only about 90 girls in the school, this represented over 10 percent. The majority of the pregnant girls were freshmen, targeted it was said by a few “baby daddies” who prided themselves on their prowess and evolutionary success...

I finally and suddenly broke. The threat was from an unlikely source, a big lad who was always subdued. He was in the special education program, and never gave any trouble when I substituted in that class. But one afternoon, for some unknowable reason, this usually gentle giant came up to me and said, “I gonna cut yo’ ass.” That was the final humiliation I would suffer in the New York City public school system...

One teacher phoned me to say that in her culture “I gonna cut yo’ ass” should not be taken literally, it just meant that he would teach me a lesson. “I don’t care,” I replied. Another called to express her astonishment that I would abandon my students. Why on earth did that matter, I answered, they hadn’t learned anything anyway. The school would hand out passing grades no matter what I did.

It is not poor teaching or a lack of money that is failing our most vulnerable populations. The real problem is an ethos of rejection that has never been openly admitted by those in authority.

Why should millions of perfectly normal adolescents, not all of them ghettoized, resist being educated? The reason is that they know deep down that due to the color of their skin, less is expected of them. This they deeply resent. How could they not resent being seen as less capable? It makes perfect psychological sense. Being very young, however, they cannot articulate their resentment, or understand the reasons for it, especially since the adults in charge hide the truth. So they take out their rage on the only ones they can: themselves and their teachers.

They also take revenge on a fraudulent system that pretends to educate them. The authorities cover up their own incompetence, and when that fails, blame the parents and teachers, or lack of funding, or “poverty,” “racism,” and so on. The media follow suit. Starting with our lawmakers, the whole country swallows the lie.

Why do precious few adults admit the truth out loud? Because in America the taboo against questioning the current orthodoxy on race is too strong and the price is too high. What is failing our most vulnerable populations is the lack of political will to acknowledge and solve the real problems. The first step is to change the ”anti-discrimination” laws that breed anti-social behavior. Disruptive students must be removed from the classroom, not to punish them but to protect the majority of students who want to learn."

So much for decolonising the curriculum, and getting 'relevant' material to students.


"Even in Success Academy, where my friend’s daughter attends, all the reading literature assigned concerns stories about blacks suffering racism in various episodes from American History. I mean, all of it. Such literature is chosen not because it reflects the human experience, but because it feeds the moral egos of those in positions of educational power."

"The part of White Privilege that I’m most grateful for, is not having been told all my life that my many failures were someone else’s fault."

"I taught in an elementary school in the ‘hood in Charlotte, NC. We had similar, although not as severe, behaviors: fights, swearing at the teachers, “students” unprepared for class, etc. They seemed to have few coping skills as their first reaction to any kind of slight, real or imaginied, from another student, was physical violence. Of course, they were not held accountable for their misbehavior. This didn’t surprise as the principal’s stated philosophy was that “when a student misbehaves, it is never the student’s fault.” I questioned him privately about that and he meant “never.” That leaves the only other party involved and that was the teacher. I related an incident where two students ganged up on another to beat him up. “How was that my fault?” I asked. He and the assistant principal then spent the next five minutes telling me all the things I should have done to prevent it"

"This is good article but the author blew it at the end. The issue isn’t that less is expected of blacks. The issue is black American culture itself. Most of these children believe that if they speak English properly or study they are “sellouts” or “Oreos.”"

"My middle school specifically was largely of a minority demographic, I suppose that would make them the majority in a sense but nonetheless, cynicism and pessimism was trendy among most of the student faculties with only few outliners either falling into fatalism or irrational optimism. Among the different yet similar tribes there was a common rule to stick to the informal norms and school of thought such as, explicit contempt for the system and everything it stood for. Any fault or pushback that came our way was of no fault of our own according to my friend, at the time. Anything that would challenge or distress the students would be led by a barrage of insults and tantrums, a pitiful bad act with the intent to hurt and shame whomever the recipient may be. Of course the majority who acted out were only putting up a front, more often than not it was clear.I never once heard a friend or student at the time take full accountability for their own actions and their life. Than again how could they? All their life they were told by their parents, peers, teachers, idols, and the media to blame the system, the oppressors, or whoever may cause any inconvenience. Ultimately, by virtue signaling and offering empty notions to these young kids I only saw contempt, incompetence, and fear emerge out of my old friend who most of them, unfortunately, fell to the consequence that such idea’s and influence lead to."

Monday, February 11, 2019

Asian Americans Asiansplaining to Asians

A: I don't really like talking bout this but I'd like to ask any Asians living in US and UK.....

What makes you feel like you have the right to gatekeep who gets to enjoy Asian things if actual Asians who live in Asia don't have the same concerns

B: Back in my time all this SJW stuff didn’t exist (it was before England got Americanised) and race was almost a non-issue. It’s become very different, I’d admit and I’m still struggling to understand it myself

What are they angry about anyways? White people liking anime? K-Pop? Durian?

A: normally stuff like that and or if white people celebrate Asian festivals

Me: I read an article where this Asian American saying he didn't care what Asian Asians said and they had no right to criticise his sjw antics because they weren't minorities

*posts link to I Don’t Care if Asians in Asia Aren’t Offended by Offensive Asian Portrayals in Hollywood Movies


"You claim it is important for you to see yourselves in media, but your parents could not even be bothered to teach you the language of the media that would show you just that, and you do not care to learn it either. You are like white americans who think they are german or irish, but know nothing of such countries. Like are just like those white americans. Rootless, desperately seeking a connection to the land beneath your feet even as you sit on a continent to which you are an alien."

"Like always it comes down to Americans thinking that the planet revolves around them."

"All of this is pretty much you being butthurt and triggered because you haven’t been noticed by Hollywood senpai, boo…fucking…hoo."

A: if anything that makes me more annoyed with them. You as an Asian American chooses not to consume Asian media and wants American media to conform to you

Me: Yeah I'm very ashamed of Asian American sjws

The best part is that they're on the chopping block after whitey

C: Likewise, their opinion doesn't mean jack shit so they have zero rights to get all offended on our behalf and go all sjw apeshit when something happens overseas that doesn't sit well with their views.

D: Is that "Love Life of an Asian Guy"?

I smashed his face in for saying he has greater authority on Asian culture because he is a minority.

He blocked me from his page for pointing out the culture he purports himself to be an authority on? WE ARE LIVING IT. Not some Americanised adaptation of it. We ARE Asian Culture.

Hurt his ego enough to show how xenophobic and racist his sorry SJW Ass really is that he had to retreat into the echo chamber.

Man... these people sound exactly the same. Almost like they are repeating the same script from a database. Kind of like NPCs. =D

Original article:

I Don’t Care if Asians in Asia Aren’t Offended by Offensive Asian Portrayals in Hollywood Movies

"Wes Anderson’s latest film ISLE OF DOGS opens this weekend and though it has received mostly positive reviews, some people who have seen it (and even liked it) are calling Anderson out for cultural appropriation and furthering stereotypes.

ISLE OF DOGS is an animated feature that takes place in a dystopian Japanese city called Megasaki and while the human characters are voiced by Japanese actors speaking in their native language, the dogs are voiced by non-Japanese names including Scarlett Johansson, Bryan Cranston, and Ed Norton speaking in English.

One of the most vocal critics of Anderson’s embracing of cultural stereotypes is LA Times reviewer Justin Chang who wrote: “It’s in the director’s handling of the story’s human factor that his sensitivity falters, and the weakness for racial stereotyping that has sometimes marred his work comes to the fore…Much of the Japanese dialogue, especially Atari’s, has been pared down to simple statements that non-speakers can figure out based on context and facial expressions…The dogs, for their part, all speak clear American English, which is ridiculous, charming and a little revealing; all these coy linguistic layers amount to their own form of marginalization, effectively reducing the hapless, unsuspecting people of Megasaki to foreigners in their own city.”

Now, I have not seen ISLE OF DOGS yet so I’m not here to weigh in on the film itself although as I’ve blogged before, just based on the “Orientalist” poster and Anderson’s standing as probably the whitest filmmaker in Hollywood, I’m already suspicious. Nor am I going to discuss the racist backlash folks like Chang and Yamato have received online for daring to criticize an indie darling like Anderson. Sadly, I don’t think anyone should be surprised by that anymore.

Nope, what I’m here to address today are comments like these:

Replying to @jenyamato @JustinCChang
I do not think you understand what cultural appropriation means. Please educate yourself and rewatch the trailer, as a Japanese citizen born in Japan I do not by any means take offense to the this movie trailer. I am ashamed that you and I share the same blood."

Replying to @jenyamato @JustinCChang
As asian in Asia, I am not offended. People are allowed to have their own interpretation, it is fun and make curious what other people think about Asia from their own perspective. Its creativity roots in its personality. There is no static view a culture and everyone should abide"

Because every time a Hollywood movie comes out that’s set in Asia and stars white people in a problematic way (i.e. whitewashing, yellow face, white heroes saving the helpless Asian people, etc…), there’s always Asian people in Asia who have to point out that they aren’t offended and, in many cases, even happy that those films exist which leads to racist assholes using those arguments to point out that Asian Americans are wrong to be outraged ’cause if real Asians aren’t offended, what’s the problem?

So while Asian Americans decried the whitewashed casting of Scarlett Johansson in the American adaptation of the Japanese manga GHOST IN THE SHELL, Japanese fans thought it was cool (according to one Japanese fan: “She was very cool. I loved her in THE AVENGERS, and I wanted to see this because she was in it. If they had done a Japanese live-action version, they would have probably cast some silly idol [girl-band member].”). When Matt Damon heroically stepped up to save China from marauding alien invaders in THE GREAT WALL, Asian Americans cried foul, but the Chinese praised the decision even to go so far as to point out how awesome Damon’s calligraphy skills (which he learned for the movie) were. And when Tom Cruise beat out all the Japanese contenders to become THE LAST SAMURAI, the Japanese made the film a massive hit expressing both flattery and pride that a star of Cruise’s stature would appear in a film set in Japan.

And my response to all this is simple: I don’t give a fuck if Asians in Asia aren’t offended by offensive Asian portrayals in Hollywood movies. I support my brothers and sisters back in the motherland as much as anyone, but when it comes to this issue, their opinions don’t matter.

Why? Because they grew up and live in countries where they are the majority–where all the people around them look like they do. Because their native movies and TV shows are full of people who not only look like them, but are portrayed in all their three-dimensional glory: as heroes, villains, lovers, fighters, killers, healers, winners, losers–all types of humans experiencing the full breadth of humanity and emotions.

Unlike Asian Americans who rarely see themselves represented in Hollywood and when they do, it’s often as stereotypes or minor figures solely existing to support the white leads.

Asians in Asia didn’t grow up with the same representation problem, so why would they be qualified to accurately speak on this issue? They can enjoy and even be flattered by films like ISLE OF DOGS or THE GREAT WALL because those are just blips–curiosities–to them. They can think a movie where Matt Damon saves China is cool because they already have hundreds of other movies where Chinese heroes do the same thing. They already see themselves reflected in their own media every day–that’s their reality. Like with white people in America, they are in a position of cultural privilege and can afford to choose not to be offended.

Not so for Asian Americans. So when a film like ISLE OF DOGS comes along that could’ve provided better representation, it matters to us in a way that our Asian counterparts wouldn’t understand.

So with all due respect to my peeps in Asia, if a Hollywood movie comes out that’s set in Asia that Asian Americans have an issue with and you feel the need to speak publicly about how you’re personally not offended by it, just shut the fuck up.

And to all the racist trolls who use those reactions from Asians who don’t have a problem with the film to make the racist argument that the film in question isn’t racist, fuck you too."

Links - 11th February 2019

Spanish language academy in row over eradicating gender bias from constitution - "The Real Academia Española, the official arbiter of the Spanish language, has become embroiled in a dispute over gender equality after the government asked it to examine whether Spain’s Constitution could become more gender nuetral.Spain’s deputy prime minister and equality minister, Carmen Calvo, said earlier this week she would ask the RAE to study updating the 1978 constitution with “inclusive” language.“We have a constitution in the masculine,” she said - noting that it referred to “ministers and deputies” with the male form of the noun - “which dates back to 40 years ago”.The heart of the issue lies in the traditional Spanish use of male pronouns and noun forms to refer to both genders collectively. Some critics say that effectively makes women invisible, while defenders of the current linguistic format say the inclusion of women is implied and accuse feminists of whipping up fury over non-existent sexism... It is not the first time the RAE has been at the centre of a row over linguistic sexism. In March it was forced to remove the definition of an "easy woman" after months of public protest. And in June, when a Spanish factory refused delayed wages to three female workers on the grounds their contract used the masculine noun for workers, the RAE appeared to blame feminists, tweeting that “perhaps the insistence that the male noun makes women invisible has brought this lamentable confusion”."

The RAE Rejects "Todos y Todas" - "The reasoning behind the creation of the phrase “todos y todas,” famously used by the former president of Argentina Cristina Kirchner, is that inclusivity is important. The term “todos” means “everyone” in Spanish, in this context, and grammatically it includes all genders, even though it has a masculine (-os) ending. The idea behind grammatical changes like “todos y todas” is to make sure women don’t feel overshadowed and invisible when people are talking in general terms.Ignacio Bosque, author of an RAE report titled “Sexismo lingüístico y la visibilidad de la mujer” (Linguistic sexism and women’s visibility) argues that, since “todos” and many other plural masculine terms, like “profesores”, grammatically includes women, so there is no need to create new terms. The use of the masculine grammatical gender as also gender neutral is very much a part of Spanish grammar, as it is with many Romance languages and even English (mankind, firemen, etc.)... Using “todos y todas” instead is a good step forward, as it includes feminine-identified people as well, but ideally terms would be genderless, as we have worked on in English with examples such as “police officer” and “businessperson”. Moving towards language that doesn’t refer to gender at all could contribute to the creation of a society that doesn’t pay attention to gender as much in terms of who gets to have what position and issues like that."
Next step guaranteed: calls to get rid of grammatical gender

OPINION: Inclusive gender-neutral Spanish is riling linguistic authorities, but will it stick? - "The Royal Academy of Spanish (RAE) is the largest authority on the language, and replies with a categorical “absolutely not” when questioned if an x, @ or e ending is possible.Pedro Luis Garcia, the ex-president of the Argentine Language Academy, spoke to Infobae explaining his views on the subject.“The use of the @ sign at the end of the word to suggest the double value of both feminine and masculine is a monstrosity because the @ sign is not a linguistic character and cannot be integrated into words…As for the use ‘x’ at the end of the word, ‘x’ itself doesn’t allude to a double meaning but rather to an unknown, as it is the symbol of an enigma to be solved.”Writer Hector Luis Alamo also wrote an article in Latino Rebels giving a strong case against the ‘x-ing’ of Spanish, saying that Latino plays the role both of a masculine and a neutral substantive.“When we read about the “Latino vote,” for instance, no one in their right mind believes the topic at hand to be strictly voters identifying as Latino men,” he wrote. “Anyone who doesn’t understand that the “Latino vote” means all Latinos, of any category (are there categories?), possesses at best a weak grasp on both the English and Spanish languages.”

The X-ing of Language: The Case AGAINST ‘Latinx’ - "Confronted once with an angry audience member who wanted to know why he insisted on referring to himself as “a Negro” and not “a Black man” — “There is no country called Negro!” the guy yelled from the back of the room — James Baldwin explained that he didn’t invent the word Negro, nor did anyone living at the time. “Do you suppose,” he asked, “that because it angers you, that suddenly an entire nation is able to change its vocabulary? In any case, I distrust the emphasis on vocabulary.”... even though his grandmother referred to herself as “a nigger,” it didn’t stop her from raising a family “and instill[ing] somehow into her children some dignity that did not depend on the word.”... “What is PC but a verbal form of gentrification?” the hapless yet indomitable Nathan asked in this week’s season finale of South Park. “Spruce everything up, get rid of all the ugliness in order to create a false sense of paradise.” Incidentally, this brand of language monitoring is not only faux-advancement, it also hinders the discussions needed to ensure the advancement it aims to achieve. You don’t need to have read Orwell to understand how the more people are made to fear misspeaking, the less they’ll speak, and that a lack of dialogue leads to widespread complacency. The most insidious form of censorship is self-censorship... For those hung up on the -o, I suggest they worry less about the history of Latino and discover its present meaning. Language isn’t dead, after all, but living. Definitions continue to transform all the time, all around us. The word no longer applies strictly to male Latinos but all Latinos, just as the “men” in “all men are created equal” now means all people. The word queer, for example, literally means “odd” or “worthless,” a fact which doesn’t keep millions in the LGBT community from donning the term proudly. The word Latino, once a fork, has evolved into a spork, and so there’s no reason to invent an all-purpose substitute. If we dump Latino for Latinx because it offends some people, then we should go on dumping words forever since there will always be some people who find some words offensive... If being a reactionary means challenging paternalism, then sign me up. After all, isn’t that the intention of language monitors: the urge to force people to do what’s best for them and others? As part of a species that believes in “bad words,” people must be protected from what they say and write. So language monitors sanitize words with x’s and @’s to make sure we’re not corrupted (or stay corrupted)."

Shortchanged: Women earn less than half of men's income - "The gender pay gap -- the difference in earnings for women workers compared with their male colleagues -- may be far worse than believed. A new analysis concludes that women earn 49 cents compared with every $1 men earn... Women who left the workforce for at least a year earned 39 percent less than women who never left. Men suffered the same 39 percent hit if they stepped away from work for a year."
Basically admitting the gender pay gap is unequal pay for unequal work
I read a few articles on the study. This is the only one which mentions men suffered the exact same penalty for not working

Harvard Study: "Gender Wage Gap" Explained Entirely by Work Choices of Men and Women - "if we truly want to measure the impact of sexism on male and female relative earnings, we want to look at men and women doing exactly the same job at exactly the same place. Fortunately, a new study by Valentin Bolotnyy and Natalia Emanuel of Harvard University—again, listed in that order because that is how they are presented in their paper—does just this. They look at data from the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA). This is a union shop with uniform hourly wages where men and women adhere to the same rules and receive the same benefits. Workers are promoted on the basis of seniority rather than performance, and male and female workers of the same seniority have the same choices for scheduling, routes, vacation, and overtime. There is almost no scope here for a sexist boss to favor men over women. And yet, even here, Emanuel and Bolotnyy find that female train and bus operators earn less than their male counterparts. From this observation, they go looking for possible causes, examining time cards and scheduling from 2011 to 2017 and factoring in sex, age, date of hire, tenure, and whether an employee was married or had dependents. They find that male train and bus drivers worked about 83 percent more overtime than their female colleagues and were twice as likely to accept an overtime shift—which pays time-and-a-half—on short notice and that around twice as many women as men never took overtime. The male workers took 48 percent fewer unpaid hours off under the Family Medical Leave Act each year. Female workers were more likely to take less desirable routes if it meant working fewer nights, weekends, and holidays. Parenthood turns out to be an important factor. Fathers were more likely than childless men to want the extra cash from overtime, and mothers were more likely to want time off than childless women. In other words, the difference in male and female earnings at the MBTA was explained by those “so-called ‘women’s choices’”... The “gender wage gap” is as real as unicorns and has been killed more times than Michael Myers. Yet politicians feel the need to genuflect before this phantom figure"

Lucas Lynch - If you want a leftist to suddenly become a defender... - "If you want a leftist to suddenly become a defender of free speech, just change the subject to Israel. Suddenly the very principles they denigrate become the nearest and dearest to their heart, even while they fail to realize that the entire reason for defending free speech for those with an opinion one finds vile is exactly to protect it for yourself.That being said, Marc Lamont Hill was not fired from CNN merely for criticizing Israel or standing up for Palestinian rights. He was fired for using the phrase "from the river to the sea", a slogan used by haters of Israel that is a call, implied or otherwise, for Israel and all Jews within it either to be expelled or exterminated... Interestingly Shaun King isn't sanctimoniously talking about how CNN is a private corporation and can hire and fire whoever they want, nor is he pointing out that Hill's rights have not been violated and then anyone who thinks otherwise doesn't understand the law. Which also shows that once the subject changes to Israel these same hypocrites understand that free-speech goes beyond the law – it is norm and custom, an institution that needs protection both from overreaching government and pitchfork or smartphone-wielding mob"

Liberal, Not Lefty - Posts - "Did the CBC really just tell Canadians to have one less child because "climate change" ?? When they simultaneously advocate for massively increased immigration and asylum seeker numbers ??"
This is not helping those who mock "white genocide" as a myth

Older version of firefox developer | Firefox Support Forum | Mozilla Support - "https://download-origin.cdn.mozilla.net/pub/devedition/releases/"

Firefox Classic Add-ons Archive - "Classic Add-Ons Archive is a new add-on for the Firefox web browser that can be best described as a local catalog of classic Firefox add-ons. The current version of the catalog lists 16706 Firefox add-ons that developers created over the past 14 years based on Firefox's XUL/XPCOM technology. The add-on can be installed in development versions of Firefox, and probably also in other browsers based on Firefox code.It is quite large, with more than 30 Megabytes, but that is justified considering that it is a local archive of Mozilla AMO."

Editing the iTunes XML File - "Listening to your favorite music while you're working can make long hours at the office seem a little less tedious. If you frequently transfer music to an iPod, USB flash drive or other portable device, the XML list that contains the library information for your iTunes collection might become corrupted. Rebuilding your iTunes library can take a considerable amount of time depending on the number of songs in your collection. If problems arise with your library file -- or if you want to move your iTunes collection to another computer -- you can use tools already built into iTunes and Windows to edit or repair the XML file and correct common problems."

More bang for your buck - Prostitution and the internet

New Technology Is Shaking Up The World's Oldest Profession

"Streetwalkers have always attracted the lion’s share of attention from policymakers and researchers because they ply their trade in public places. They are more bothersome for everyone else—and, because they are the most vulnerable, more likely to come to the attention of the police and of social or health workers. But in many rich countries they are a minority of all sex workers; just 10-20% in America, estimates Ronald Weitzer, a sociologist at George Washington University...

The most striking trend our analysis reveals is a drop in the average hourly rate of a prostitute in recent years... One reason is surely the downturn that followed the 2007-08 financial crisis... Large-scale migration is another reason prices are falling...

Twenty years ago most prostitutes in Norway were locals who all aimed to charge about the same, says May-Len Skilbrei, a sociologist at Oslo University. Today, with growing numbers of sex workers from the Baltic states and central Europe, as well as Nigerians and Thais, such unofficial price controls are harder to sustain.

Inexperience is another reason newcomers to prostitution may underprice themselves, at least at first...

The shift online has probably boosted supply by drawing more locals into the sex trade, too. More attractive and better-educated women, whose marital and job prospects are therefore better, are more likely to consider sex work if it is arranged online. Indoor sex work is safer than streetwalking, and the risk of arrest is lower...

Meanwhile, broader social change may be reducing demand—and thus, prices. Free, no-strings-attached sex is far easier to find than in the past...

As in other bits of the economy, clients who seek niche services must pay more. Sex workers who offer anal sex or spanking earn on average $25 or $50 more per hour, respectively (see chart 2). Those who will accept two male clients at once or do threesomes with another woman command a larger premium...

Going from flat-chested to a D-cup increases hourly rates by approximately $40, meaning that at a typical price of $3,700, surgery could pay for itself after around 90 hours...

A prostitute’s rates also vary according to her ethnicity and nationality. What attracts a premium in one place can attract a penalty in another... In Kuala Lumpur, she found, black women command very high rates and in Singapore, Vietnamese ones do. In Dubai, European women earn the most. What counts as exotic and therefore desirable varies from place to place, and depends on many factors, such as population flows.

Local markets have other quirks. According to the site we analysed, an hour with an escort in Tokyo is a bargain compared with one in London or New York. Yet a cost-of-living index compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit, our sister organisation, suggests that Tokyo is the most expensive city overall of the three. The apparent anomaly may be because escorts who appear on an English-language review site mostly cater to foreigners, who are not offered the more unusual—and expensive—services Japanese prostitutes provide for locals. These include the bubble baths and highly technical massages of Sopurando ("Soapland"), a red-light district in Tokyo, which can cost ¥60,000 ($600) for a session and involve intercourse (although that is not advertised).

A degree appears to raise earnings in the sex industry just as it does in the wider labour market. A study by Scott Cunningham of Baylor University and Todd Kendall of Compass Lexecon, a consultancy, shows that among prostitutes who worked during a given week, graduates earned on average 31% more than non-graduates...

Their clients tend to be older men who seek longer sessions and intimacy, rather than a brief encounter...

Prostitution is easier than many other jobs to combine with motherhood: it pays well enough to cover child-care costs, and can be fitted around school holidays, plays and sports days, and children’s illnesses...

In 2008 the Republican and Democratic national conventions were held in Minneapolis and Denver respectively. Around 50,000 visitors flocked to each city. Another study by Mr Cunningham and Mr Kendall found that the numbers of advertisements for sex on the now-defunct “erotic services” section of Craigslist, a classified-advertising site, were 41% higher in Minneapolis and 74% higher in Denver around the conventions than expected for those days of the week and times of year...

“Screening for cops [is now] the priority over screening for rapists, thieves, kidnappers”"

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Links - 10th February 2019 (2)

The Peterson Principle: Intellectual Complexity and Journalistic Incompetence - "What I was getting was precisely what was missing from virtually all the media coverage of the Peterson issue: intelligent inquiry, honest discussion, the exchange of views and the critique of ideas that is possible when really smart people talk about really difficult topics. In contrast were the flawed reporting and misinformed commentary that characterized respected mainstream media reports... I imagined what doctors, engineers, physicists, psychologists, lawyers and any informed person thinks of the quality of the stories that touch upon their area of expertise. No wonder people are jaded about journalism today. So much of it is lazy,– and just wrong – so much of the time... This reached its nadir when Cathy Newman had Peterson on Britain’s Channel 4. In this train wreck of an interview which went viral, you can see everything that is wrong with mainstream media today... journalists are not supposed to be in the business of buttressing ideologies; they’re supposed to be truth seekers. But in much of what has been written and broadcast around this subject, truth has been nowhere in sight... While mainstream media emphasizes quick hits, short interviews, and click-bait headlines, a significant proportion of the public is seeking something else... While mainstream media struggles with declining readership and a public that refuses to financially support what they are delivering, online audiences are lining up and paying."

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, Widowed: Food After Loss - "In some cultures, Fathi’s [sp?] heard about rituals where widows are made to drink a soup, which contains parts of their husband's body...
[On asafoetida as a substitute for forbidden onion and garlic] The creativity of widows like Chichetra’s [sp?] grandmother who improvised with limited ingredients recreating the flavors of prohibited foods is widely believed to be responsible for Bengal’s rich vegetarian cuisine."

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, The Ungarnished Truth: Restaurant Critics - "Australia… famously doesn't have that many negative reviews, the libel laws in Australia are such that you can sue for negative reviews and it has happened there so people are quite anxious about it. And I know colleagues who work for publications... they really out of a five star system they are not allowed to do less than 3 stars and 3 stars is seen as really risky."

Does Our Cultural Obsession With Safety Spell the Downfall of Democracy? - The New York Times - ""If it feels as though we no longer know how to speak or listen in good faith to one another, it’s because we don’t. This is the kind of controversy that might have seemed overblown as recently as the start of the Obama administration. Today it arrives with frequency and fervor — a marker of the country’s rapidly shifting mores, which are the product of new generations increasingly fluent in, in thrall to and in fear of the hyperspecialized language and norms of academia... How did we arrive at this fraught place where the use of nothing more sinister than a body metaphor can assume the power to cause harm?... In “The Splintering of the American Mind,” William Egginton, a humanities professor at Johns Hopkins, examines the competing costs and benefits of the country’s continuing shift away from a commonly accepted — albeit white — canon of shared narratives to an “exploration and celebration of marginalized racial and sexual identities.”... The fracturing and castigating discourse around identity, coupled with metastasizing inequality of both opportunity and outcome, leads Egginton to make the necessary if familiar case that a humanities education — however out of fashion and reach for many Americans — is still the “key in the formation of a public capable of democratic self-governance.” The liberal tradition, accessible to all and capable of generating an expansive common narrative that takes note of America in all her tribal guises and evokes sufficient “fellow feeling,” is, for Egginton, our only hope out of the bind... Members of iGen, according to the psychologist Jean Twenge, who coined the term, are “obsessed with safety,” which they define to include expansive notions of “emotional safety.” They began arriving on college campuses in 2013. Rates of anxiety and depression soon skyrocketed, along with demands for trigger warnings, safe spaces and disinvitations to controversial speakers, as well as sometimes violent confrontations with such speakers when they did appear on campus... This is a generation engaged in a meritocratic “arms race” of epic proportions, that has racked up the most hours of homework (and screen time) in history but also the fewest ever of something so simple as unsupervised outdoor play. If that sounds trivial, it shouldn’t. “When adult-supervised activities crowd out free play, children are less likely to develop the art of association,” Lukianoff and Haidt write, along with other social skills central to the making of good citizens capable of healthy compromise. Worse, the consequences of a generation unable or disinclined to engage with ideas and interlocutors that make them uncomfortable are dire for society, and open the door — accessible from both the left and the right — to various forms of authoritarianism... If we are going to beat back the regressive populism, mendacity and hyperpolarization in which we are currently mired, we are going to need an educated citizenry fluent in a wise and universal liberalism. This liberalism will neither play down nor fetishize identity grievances, but look instead for a common and generous language to build on who we are more broadly, and to conceive more boldly what we might be able to accomplish in concert."
In other words, identity politics, by denying what we have in common is poisonous

Caso Cerrado: Transgender woman sues over 'broken penis' - "A reality TV courtroom was left stunned after learning why a woman was suing the wife of her dead lover. On an episode of Caso Cerrado - meaning case closed - Jennifer, who is transgender and still has her male genitalia, claimed that the defendant Sylvia's husband, Miguel, broke her penis when he had a heart attack and died while they were having sex. Jennifer, who said she was hired by Sylvia to sleep with Miguel for his 60th birthday, appeared on Caso Cerrado in Miami to sue Sylvia for £16,000. She told host Ana Maria Polo: 'After we had sex he said I didn't fully fulfill his fantasy... She said that she thought Miguel was enjoying himself, but he suddenly had a heart attack and died while she was inside him... In the end, Jennifer and Sylvia decided to settle, with Sylvia paying $5,000."

Cody Payant - Respect in Saskatchewan : Time after time Justin... - "Time after time Justin Trudeau displays a complete lack of respect for Canadian taxpayers. Expressing a disdain for Canadian sovereignty in favour of a "post-national state", eager to sign away control of immigration legislation to supranational jurisdiction of the United Nations, and telling veterans that they are "asking for more than we can give", the Liberals have compiled a very unCanadian fiscal rap sheet:...
- $2 billion stolen from seniors pension for housing in Mumbai.
- $200 million to finance conflict in Afghanistan.
- $125 million to finance Tanzania hunting down and arresting homosexuals.
- $50 million to finance conflict in Palestine.
- $50 million this weekend, after ignoring the possibility of taking in South African farmers as refugees who are facing land seizures, physical assault and murder on a daily basis while taking a photo op with the President of South Africa, then tweets to a South African celebrity for attention and impulsively gives away money that's not his in a way that would make a dictator blush."

Being Classically Feminine - Posts - "I made a yarn butterfly today :)" - 2014, as a brunette
"So whose gonna take one for the team and kill Kavanaugh?" - 2018, with pink hair
"College will fuck you up."
The explanation for this is undoubtedly that she was being satirical and critiquing his privilege

The Worst of Twitter - Posts - "Humble Bundle is under attack from the NPC hordes for teaming up with Stardock for a charity benefiting victims of the California wildfire. Stardock CEO Brad Wardell's opinions and pro-consumer stance puts him on the "wrong side of history."
It's mostly Twitter, and Twitter is cancer."

- Marilynne Cathy Ousley - "Hey, if you're not gay, my friend thinks youre cute. Here's her her number (and if you are gay here's mine)"

Cop in panties-munching scandal speaks out: 'My career is over' - "The Brooklyn detective who says his salty sergeant shoved her panties in his mouth hasn’t been back to work since the Oct. 7 incident, and that he is now an outcast.“I’m the pariah of the precinct and the NYPD,” Detective Victor Falcon told The Post in an exclusive interview. “My career is over.“Nobody will ever take me seriously … I’m known as the panty-eater. To do my job is impossible,” he said... “In a world where we are looking for gender equality, I was abused for my gender,” he continued. “Picture a male doing that to a female. He wouldn’t have a job anymore.”"

Women Are Being Asked To Record 'Consent Videos' And What The Hell? - "A worrying new trend is seeing women being asked to record "consent videos" before having sex with men who fear they will be accused of assault afterward.This dating trend involves one partner filming the other giving them verbal consent before they engage in a sexual act.This then allows the person who recorded the video to use it as "evidence" that their partner gave consent before having sex."
Funny, I thought getting consent was a good thing. Then again consent can be withdrawn at any time so this is useless

Opinion | The Hypocrisy of Hanukkah - The New York Times - "Hanukkah, which at its heart is an eight-night-long celebration of religious fundamentalism and violence... as Jews have become assimilated into American society, the holiday has evolved into a kind of Semitic sidekick for Christmas, a minor festival pumped up into something it was never meant to be so that Jewish kids won’t feel bad about not having a tree... Hanukkah, in essence, commemorates the triumph of fundamentalism over cosmopolitanism. Our assimilationist answer to Christmas is really a holiday about subjugating assimilated Jews"

The $0.006 Object in Your Sushi Container Is Doing an Important Job - The New York Times

Louisiana School Made Headlines for Sending Black Kids to Elite Colleges. Here’s the Reality. - The New York Times - "the school falsified transcripts, made up student accomplishments and mined the worst stereotypes of black America to manufacture up-from-hardship tales that it sold to Ivy League schools hungry for diversity"
If affirmative action is a good thing...

Kansas City Health Department pours bleach on food meant for homeless people - "The food was going to be distributed by a group called Free Hot Soup KC. The Kansas City Star said that the food, which included home-cooked chili, foil wrapped sandwiches and vats of soup, was destroyed on Sunday, Nov. 5, during a coordinated sting at several parks where volunteers had gathered.The Health Department said the group did not have a permit and was putting people at risk. "E. coli or salmonella or listeria can grow in the food," department director Rex Archer said. "And then you give that to homeless people who are more vulnerable, they will end up in the ER and even die from that exposure.""
Better the certainty of starving to death than the possibility of getting food poisoning

You Want to Feed the Hungry? Lovely. Let’s See Your Permit. - The New York Times - "the risks of foodborne illness from charitable meals are real, food safety experts said.During a church gathering this month in Concord, N.C., hundreds of people were sickened by a Brunswick stew that was contaminated with bacteria. In several cities in California, outbreaks of hepatitis A, a food-borne illness, beset homeless populations and claimed 20 lives last year. Fifty homeless people were hospitalized in Denver six years ago after getting food poisoning from turkey served at a rescue mission."

Confessions of an Ex-Party Girl

NUSWhispers - Posts:

"Ex party girl here from an era before most of you here. Gone through all the same things of becoming invisible to males after crossing a certain age and having no suitors when I wanted to quit the party scene. Same grating CNY questions, same getting wedding invites and being jiemei over and over again until I was the only unmarried one left.

Had all the same rationalisations that you are having now, blamed everyone for such an unfair system, tried to convince myself I was happy and complete unlike all my friends shackled to marriage and kids. Yes I was also one of those don't deserve me if can't handle me at my worst girls. That was me.

It starts slowly at first and maybe denial has a part to play but one day you will notice how your FWBs move on and end up in LTRs and end up happily married (yes it's unfair but that's how it is). ONSes will dry up because the clubbing men are all going to younger girls that look like what you used to. Your clubbing friends who weren't as havoc will all start dropping out partying as they settle down and you will feel like the person who didn't get the musical chair. The tattoos you got then to show how hip and sexy you were will start to look silly years later and you will spend more time convincing yourself how it was a good idea instead of admiring them.

You will try to get into LTRs but you mainly only know how to get one kind of uncommitted men and they just string you along until one day you get "the talk" on how this isn't working out. Even that devoted nice guy you friendzoned back then and now consider reconnecting with out of desperation is happy attached and sends you his wedding invite. You bite your lip with every failure. Move on.

All you have is a job you no longer like. No energy. Returning to an empty house late after work. Lots of nights thinking about what could have been if you lived more for the long term in your 20s.

Experienced all that. Many girls in my position can go on deluding themselves about how they are complete and all that but I guess that is just not me. True there may be one or two who are really happy that way but the thing nobody wants to talk about is how many of us are not because no one wants to hear about that.

At the end life is about choices and you can't have it all. I am not saying all this so you will pity me, I have long accepted that a loving husband and kids are something I will never have, to think I used to hate these ideas when I was younger. I can only blame myself for being entitled and thinking the world owed me no matter what choices I made. I am tired of blaming others.

All I want to say to younger girls not so far down the path I took is that one day the party will end and the hook ups will dry up. At the end of the day it was all so empty. Live for things that matter. Be wise.

#58014: https://www.nuswhispers.com/confession/58014"

Links - 10th February 2019 (1)

Ernest Everhard - Posts - ""When 25,000 children stare to death every day under capitalism and modern day slaves are being auctioned off in Libya - but the Tumblr Left is busy arguing whether it's "cultural appropriation" to do yoga or put a white kid in karate class."
"The "tumblr left" is completely oblivious to the irony of their telling us to "check our privilege." How about you get the logs out of your own gated community, trust fund eyes before lecturing the rest of us about your bullsh!t manufactured issues from the comfort of your plush Guardian or Huffpost offices. With "leftists" like tumblr and twitter feminists, who needs conservatives?"

The end of impartiality - "We haven't stopped appealing to trans-political truths and ideals, but we've stopped believing that anyone who isn't on our own side could possibly mean it. Which is the same as saying that we no longer believe in the possibility of trans-political truths and ideals. There's our way and the wrong way, with no third or higher alternative. Once that outlook begins to spread, appeals to higher truths and ideals actually make things worse. Like the ancient sophists who delighted in mocking the noble-sounding pretenses of the high-minded, today's partisans increasingly view expressions of dispassionate neutrality as a uniquely dishonest form of partisanship — one that unconvincingly conceals its motives beneath a veneer of moral elevation. Where do we go from here? It would appear as if we have two options. One is civil war by other means — endless conflict among people on differing sides of arguments, with no one capable of settling the debate in a way that commands consensus. There will be victories, but they will always be tentative and temporary, and always won by force, not reason — with moral and even factual truth becoming ever-more a function of which faction prevails at the ballot box or opinion poll. Might will make right, in other words, not some trans-political standard that both sides increasingly consider a fiction."
With post-modernism, there is no truth - everything is a power game

Liberal Students Think Conservatives Are ‘Evil’ or ‘Inhuman,’ UW Study Finds - "Many left-leaning students at the University of Washington-Seattle harbor feelings that Republicans and conservatives are "evil," "inhuman," or "not even a person," according to a new study led by a team of UW psychology professors.The study, "Improving Relations among Conservatives and Liberals on a College Campus," set out to do just that: bring students from opposing sides of the political divide together in an honest attempt to cultivate empathy and understanding... Fortunately, in the hours after the workshop, students’ feelings of Manichaeism decreased.But when re-surveyed a month later, the students, especially liberals — who reported stronger feelings of manichaeism in the first place — basically went back to hating their political opponents."Liberal beliefs that conservatives are evil only temporarily improved," the study concluded. Future research could "explore whether Manichaeism directed towards conservatives increases conservative minority stress""
n = 20, but from this study liberals hated conservatives more than vice versa, and continued to hate them more after the intervention

How Dick Came to be Short for Richard - "You might think from Richard meaning “hard ruler” and being a man’s name that Dick being a nickname for Richard probably came about for pejorative reasons, borrowing from one of the other meanings of “dick”, such as ‘dick’ as in ‘jerk’ or ‘dick as in ‘penis’. However, the first record of ‘dick’ meaning ‘jerk’ didn’t come about until a few hundred years after its association with Richard and the first record of it referring to a penis wasn’t until the 1890s, as a British army slang term. Exactly how that latter meaning came about isn’t known, being a slang term that was considered somewhat uncouth to put on paper. Because of that, ‘dick’ meaning ‘penis’ probably had been around a while before the 1890s, but not nearly long enough before to have contributed to the Richard/Dick connection.How Dick became a nickname for Richard is known and is one of those “knee bone connected to the thigh bone” type progressions, somewhat similar to how the word ‘soccer’ came about. Due to people having to write everything by hand, shortened versions of Richard were common, such as ‘Ric’ or ‘Rich’. This in turn gave rise to nicknames like ‘Richie’, ‘Rick’, and ‘Ricket’, among others. People also used to like to use rhyming names; thus, someone who was nicknamed Rich might further be nicknamed Hitch. Thus, Richard -> Ric -> Rick gave rise to nicknames like Dick and Hick around the early 13th century...
People with the name Robert are also called Bob via much the same process as people who are named Richard being called Dick. Namely Robert -> Rob and then the rhyming nickname Bob.
Similarly, this is also how we get Bill from William, William -> Will rhyming then to Bill.
The nickname Hodge is derived this same way from Roger: Roger -> Rodge -> Hodge.
Polly likewise comes from the name Molly… the list goes on and on and on."

The Origin of the Word “Soccer” - "British school boys of the day liked to nickname everything, which is still somewhat common. They also liked to add the ending “er” to these nicknames. Thus Rugby was, at that time, popularly called “Rugger”. Association Football was then much better known as “Assoccer”, which quickly just became “Soccer” and sometimes “Soccer Football”... The game gradually spread throughout the world under the lower class name of “Football”, rather than “Soccer” as the “gentlemen” called it. The problem was, though, that a lot of other countries of the world already had popular sports of their own they called “Football”, such as the United States, Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, to name a few. In these countries, the name “Soccer” was and, in some, still is preferred for this reason."

Men’s Rights Group Files Title IX Complaint Against Georgetown University Against Prof Who Tweeted That White Republican Senators Deserve ‘Miserable Deaths' - "The nation’s oldest men’s group filed a Title IX complaint Thursday against Georgetown University, calling for the termination of the professor who tweeted that white GOP senators “deserve miserable deaths.”According to the October 4 complaint, filed with the D.C. branch of the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights, Georgetown Professor Christine Fair has “has openly called for violence and terrorism against men as a class… and several specific men.”Christine Fair became national news last week after she fired off a series of tweets in the wake of the Brett Kavanaugh saga. “Look at all the entitled white men justifying a serial rapist’s arrogated entitlement,” tweeted Fair.“All of them deserve miserable deaths while feminists laugh as they take their last gasps. Bonus: we castrate their corpses and feed them to swine,” she added. .. the group that filed the complaint — the National Coalition for Men — doesn’t think she should teach anymore... “This is basically weapons-grade misogyny. Anyone who confuses a critique of male privilege with animus towards men is being daft or willfully mendacious”... “Regarding the comment by Christine Fair, if a male professor said those horrific things about female senators, he'd be fired immediately, not to mention mobbed and vilified in the media”... NCFM thanks Kursat Christoff Pekgoz for his scholarly assistance in filing this Title IX complaint, which also lists 19 women-only or women-centric programs that NCFM deems discriminatory towards men. The full Title IX complaint can be found here.Professor Fair’s biography ends with: “She can cause trouble in multiple languages.”"
This is what a feminist looks like
This is the same Georgetown Professor who called German officers Nazis and got sued
The next time I want to make death threats I will claim I am critiquing privilege

Why the NRA Stands Up for Some Black Gun Owners, But Not Others - "Since 2013, the gun group has waged a publicity campaign to recruit minority members, running ads and putting forward African-American spokesmen.The group helped Otis McDonald, a black Chicago resident, successfully challenge that city’s handgun ban in the Supreme Court. It submitted amicus briefs on behalf of black Delaware residents challenging that state’s ban on guns in public housing. The NRA took up the cause of Shaneen Allen, a black Pennsylvanian who was arrested in New Jersey after she mistakenly believed her state’s concealed carry license allowed her to bring her gun across the Delaware River... standing up for Castile and Hughes would have required the NRA to explicitly criticize police, which the organization cannot afford to do. That’s because the NRA describes law enforcement as an ally in an ongoing culture war against forces like Black Lives Matter, which the gun group believes would irrevocably damage the country’s essential character. Gun owners need to side with cops against critics, the group argues, not just to maintain law and order but also to preserve conservative values and lifestyles under threat from others."
I don't think the NRA protests white gun owners shot by police either - which suggests that it's because (as hinted by the article) the NRA is pro-police
The article also pretends that the ACLU is still the same as the old ACLU which supported everyone's rights

Women are one third more likely to get hired than men - "Having analysed over 20,000 applications, we were fascinated to see some clear trends. Women were not only more likely to be invited to an interview after an application, they were then performing better at these interviews. As such, we found that each application made by a woman is 35% more likely to result in a job hire than a man."
Male privilege!

WATCH: Caravan Migrants Tell MSNBC, 'We Want To Go Home' - "Members of the "migrant caravan" currently camped out in Tijuana, Mexico, just across the border from San Diego, California, told MSNBC late Tuesday that they were told making entrance into the United States would be much easier and that they're ready to make the long journey back home. The MSNBC reporter on scene claims that after speaking with migrants biding their time in shelters near the border, that many of the would-be asylum seekers were told that crossing the border would be a relatively painless process, and that most of them would be eligible for available work programs designed to help them integrate into American culture and society... Tijuana wants the situation resolved as quickly as possible: either asylum seekers approach the border peacefully and declare their intentions, or they accept one of Mexico's offers. Authorities in Tijuana say the migrant caravan is costing their city government more than $35,000 per day, and that they may have to raise taxes on Tijuana citizens if the migrant caravan doesn't move on... the migrants don't just blame Trump, they also blame their fellow migrants for egging on Border Patrol agents and throwing rocks at law enforcement officers during what was supposed to be a "peaceful" march to the border to demand attention. The more violent the confrontations, some feel, the less likely the U.S. government will look kindly on their plight."

Watch: Student Wins After Freaked-Out Teacher Calls Him 'A**hole' over MAGA Hat, Evacuates Classroom - "If students were truly upset about the young man’s hat, which is sadly believable, then they shouldn’t have looked at it. The students should have focused on their lesson instead of letting themselves get “provoked” by a harmless hat. But I guess the students couldn’t focus on their lesson even if they wanted to because their teacher stopped class to berate the hat-wearing student."

Woman's T-Shirt Made Someone Feel So "Unsafe" They Had To Call The Cops - "They were wearing their “I’ve heard enough from old white men” t-shirts when they went out to grab some lunch one day. Most of us would agree that their t-shirts are an absolutely valid way of expressing frustration with the current state of policies in the government, along with the other issues, like reproductive rights."
I'm sure if someone had been wearing "I've heard enough from angry black women" t-shirts, fempositive.com would've called the cops
I like how in the comments people are bashing the complainant as Republican, a Trump supporter etc - despite no information about her relevant demographics

Universal Housing vs Bank Bailouts in the UK

It was suggested to me that rather than Universal Basic Income, which is being envisioned as a welfare payment slashing tool, Universal Basic Services would be a much better idea.

And that although democratic socialist states are provided services, they are not providing housing - and that housing should also be provided for free.

I pointed out that this would be expensive, but was told that bank bailouts were more so:

"the NAO in 2007 reported the UK had committed 1.162 trillion to bank bailouts. Based on the government’s own forecast (2007-11), that 1.4 billion was needed to build 40,000 homes, that some could just about covered the cost of free state housing for everyone in the UK."

So I did the sums:

According to the National Audit Office, in 2017 all but 5% of the bank bailout money had been recovered. That's 58 billion pounds.

Let's write off this 58 billion pounds. But bear in mind that this was a one-off cost, so we can amortise it over 10 years (2007 to 2017). So that's 5.8 billion pounds a year without the time cost of money (for simplicity).

Now let us consider the cost of providing universal housing. As the name suggests this is for everyone - not limited to 40,000 households.

Since it's supposed to be universal housing, the best way to proxy the cost of this would be with rents.

Average rent in the UK varied from about 1600 pounds a month for London to about 500 pounds a month in the North East.

For simplicity let's take a simple average of the two for countrywide rent, at about 1000 pounds.

In 2017 there were 27.2 million households in the UK. So it would've cost 27.2 billion pounds a year in 2017 to provide housing for everyone in the UK.

This is more than 4x the cost of bank bailouts.

Bear in mind that this is just the monetary cost side of the equation.

Now we must consider what would be (or would have been) the cost of not providing bank bailouts or universal housing.

Without bank bailouts, there might've been a depression.

On the other hand, without universal housing, there're at least 320,000 homeless people in the UK and some people have difficulty paying the rent.

But we know that with a depression a lot more people would be suffering than are now.

Therefore we can see that the UK bank bailouts were both cheaper and more important than providing universal housing in the UK would be.
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