When you can't live without bananas

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Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Links - 25th September 2019 (3)

Humans of Sunnybank - "Hi, my name is Zhang Lai-Fan. I am professional baby formula buyer from Mainland China. Every day I camping outside supermarket to wait for open time. I set goal to buy 20 tin each day, only take me 2 hour to empty the shelf. No staff ever stop me because all Asian look the same, they don't know I keep come back buy more. If Aussie mother try to argue me, I tell them my son is Bruce Lee. Don't mess me, or I call him to kung fu you. Now my Social Credit Score over 9000. :D"

Child psychologist Lisa Damour says kids need rules more than affection from their parents - "Children need both affection and structure in order to develop into secure, happy adults.But if parents can only provide one, it should be structure, said Lisa Damour, a psychologist who specializes in adolescent girls, and the author of Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions Into Adulthood.“They can get warmth from their teachers, from their friends’ parents, but they can only get structure from parents”... Children who are raised in a stern, business-like way may be less happy as adults, but they’ll have the tools they need to function. Children raised without discipline or rules can be stunted and ill-equipped for adulthood... Adolescents actually want structure from their parents, despite their protestations to the contrary. Permissiveness and inconsistency from parents can be unsettling and provoke anxiety"

yamnooseka on Twitter - "I think a lot of people assume they're hated for their gender/sexuality/race when they're actually just unlikeable cunts"

FATAH: The push to boot candidates accused of Islamophobia raises questions - "the Green Party fired their candidate in the Quebec riding of Lévis-Lotbinière after he was labelled an ‘Islamophobe’ because he dared to criticize a mosque leader... If there was any consolation, Saint-Hilaire is not the first and certainly not the last Canadian politician falling victim to lobbying that started with the infamous M-103 moved in 2018 by Liberal MP Iqra Khalid and one that I had predicted could lead to stifling any criticism of Islamist theocracy in Canada."

Being Classically Liberal - Posts - "Pro-slavery southern secessionists circa 1860: "America was founded on slavery, the constitution is a pro-slavery document."
Democrats, 2019: "America was founded on slavery, the constitution is a pro-slavery document.""

Seeing Is Believing: Fake News May Lead To False Memories, Voter Study Finds - "Those who scored lower on the cognitive test were just as likely as high scorers to recall false memories, but low scorers were more likely to remember false details that agreed with their beliefs. This suggests, according to the study’s authors, that more intelligent individuals may be more likely to question their own beliefs and preferred news sources."

Why are fewer Frenchwomen sunbathing topless? | Spectator USA - "In 1984, a survey found that 43 percent of Frenchwomen bathed topless on the beach. But a similar poll last month revealed that figure had fallen to 19 percent. Of 1,000 women interviewed, 59 percent of under-25s said they covered their breasts in order not to arouse men, while 51 percent said they were scared of being physically or sexually abused if they went topless. Other reasons stated were a fear of skin cancer, and a lack of self-confidence about their bodies. This isn’t the first time the French have pondered this issue. Five years ago, the women’s section of Le Figaro ran a piece entitled ‘Is Topless Sunbathing still a feminist Act?’. Sociologist and author Jean-Claude Kaufmann said that topless sunbathing was so common in the 70s and 80s it became banal, a summertime ritual with a hierarchy of beauty and youth. Women felt compelled to strip off, and if they didn’t, well, they were prudish... In its 2014 article, Le Figaro highlighted social media as a contributory factor in modesty winning out over nudity; 40 years ago a woman could bathe topless on a beach and not worry that within a few hours she might find herself going viral on the internet. There’s another sinister development in France in recent years that explains why women are not only reluctant to go topless but frightened at the thought. It’s what Jacqueline Costa-Lascoux, a director for a governmental research organization, described in 2015 as ‘a police of mores who are principally targeting young women on the issue of modesty’.The social police in question are Islamists, and while they target principally Muslim women, reports of sunbathers being harassed and even physically assaulted generate a fear among women in general... For decades, Frenchwomen have suffered stoically, only revealing their true feelings in surveys, like the one published in Liberation 10 years ago that found 88 percent of them considered themselves prudish, 37 percent were disturbed by the sight of a topless sunbather and 29 percent insisted on making love in the dark."

Species and Sex Differences in Risk Tolerance - "Both male and female rats were sensitive to the increase in risk over time, and chose the risky option less frequently as the probability of shock increased. However, female rats were more risk averse than male rats: they chose the large risky reward significantly less often and were significantly slower to do so.This sex difference was not influenced by estrous cycle, nor could it be accounted for by differences in physical shock perception or satiation between sexes. Furthermore, lower doses (relative to body weight) of amphetamine were required to reduce risk-taking behavior in female versus male rats.Because amphetamine is thought to influence dopamine signaling, which is necessary for avoiding averse outcomes, these results suggest that sex differences in risk-taking could be due to sex differences in dopamine neurotransmission"
The power of patriarchy!

Sex differences in risk-taking and associative learning in rats - "when the environment was novel, males spent more time out of cover than females. Males also hid less when exposed to the test arena containing predator odour. By contrast, females explored more than males when the predator odour was removed (associatively learned risk). These results suggest that males are more risk-prone but behave more in line with previous experiences, while females are more risk-averse and more responsive to changes in their current environment"

Male risk-taking is related to number of mates in a polygynous bird - "Evolutionary theory predicts that when intrasexual competition is intense, risky behaviors can evolve if they enhance reproductive success. Here we tested the idea that polygynous males exhibit predictable variation in risk-taking during intense competition for mates. We conducted an observational study of a village weaverbird (Ploceus cucullatus) breeding colony, and video recorded synchronous fleeing events, a common predator avoidance behavior. Males adjusted their flight from the colony according to the amplitude (loudness) and Wiener entropy (harshness) of conspecific alarm calls during a perceived threat. Males also varied in how often they fled the colony. Specifically, in line with predictions based on the value of a male’s territory, males with more nesting females were less likely to flee, and returned sooner if they did flee, compared to males with fewer nesting females. Males with a nest under construction also returned to their nests sooner than males without constructions in progress, consistent with predictions based on nest sabotage by conspecifics. These results suggest that male weavers perform a cost-benefit analysis in real time in order to decide how to respond to a perceived threat, with self-protection trading off with the security of one’s territory and mates."

Why animals also seek teenage kicks - "Doting otter parents do their best to keep juveniles from venturing into the triangle of death, and mature males and females are smart enough to stay away. In fact, females never show up in the area at all. The only otters foolish enough to attempt an incursion into the triangle are adolescent males – it turns out that human teenagers aren't the only animals that make bad decisions during the awkward transition between childhood and maturity... What made these male elephants so dangerously aggressive and so unusually sexually active? When the young were growing up in South Africa's Kruger National Park in the 1980s, the mature males and females of their social groups were the victims of culling programmes. The juvenile males, none of them older than ten years, were relocated to Pilanesberg National Park some six hundred kilometres away, where they matured in the absence of any adults. The orphan males never spent their awkward teenage years being mentored by older, more experienced males. An assessment of this and other "stressed communities" which had all been subject to elephant culling showed that male-male aggression accounted for almost ninety out of every hundred male deaths, compared with only 6% in unstressed communities."

The Darwin Awards: sex differences in idiotic behaviour - "Sex differences in risk seeking behaviour, emergency hospital admissions, and mortality are well documented. However, little is known about sex differences in idiotic risk taking behaviour. This paper reviews the data on winners of the Darwin Award over a 20 year period (1995-2014). Winners of the Darwin Award must eliminate themselves from the gene pool in such an idiotic manner that their action ensures one less idiot will survive. This paper reports a marked sex difference in Darwin Award winners: males are significantly more likely to receive the award than females (P<0.0001). We discuss some of the reasons for this difference."

Domino's Pizza app must be accessible to blind people - "Domino's Pizza has been told its website and app must be made fully accessible to blind people, after losing a legal case in the US.It follows a complaint from a blind customer who said he first struggled to change toppings and then was unable to complete a pizza's purchase using the company's iPhone app."
Maybe they'll just pull the app, then everyone will be worse off

SMRT Feedback by The Vigilanteh - Posts - "Father earns $2K a month, mother earns $1.2K a month. Son has a gpa of 1.82 out of 4.00. Son CMI locally so he wants to get his degree in a Canadian Uni. Court rules that dad has to pay 60% of the overseas course fees, and mom pay the balance despite dad saying the son can study locally to improve his marks first before reapplying to uni... This is an absurd ruling and a precedent that is prone to abuse for future children who want to sue their parents just so they can study overseas."

fake geek gamer girl on Twitter - "Whenever a woman gets attacked or abused by a man people tell me that’s why I need feminism.
The problem is;
When a crime happens feminists don’t see a criminal, they see a man.
When the criminal is a woman they see an exception.
I can’t support that mentality."

Morgan Chambers 🇺🇸🇧🇿 on Twitter - "According to my community,
If I speak proper English, I’m acting “white”
If I dress with class, I’m acting “white”
If I educate myself, I’m acting “white”
My question to people who say this is,”Why do you associate being black with being a failure?”"

Majority of Canadians favour limiting immigration levels: Poll - "Scheer says it’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s fault that public support for immigration is waning. He pointed to the influx of over 43,000 asylum seekers that have crossed into Canada “illegally” since 2017 using a forest path in Quebec and avoiding official border checkpoints where they’d have been turned back to the U.S. asylum system.“There is absolutely nothing fair or compassionate about real victims of persecution having to fight the government to be reunited with their families, or forcing the oppressed to wait longer for Canada’s help while others jump the queue, exploit loopholes and cross the border illegally from places like upstate New York"

Canada's millionaire migrants earn less than refugees, so why bother with wealth migration? - "After their first year in Canada it averaged about C$18,000. After five years, it was about C$21,000; after 15 years in Canada, it had only risen to C$25,000. Compare that to the Canadian average of C$41,000 for the 2008 tax year, from which the data is extracted... Skilled worker immigrantsaveraged C$34,000 after one year in Canada, and after 15 years were averaging more than C$60,000. Live-in caregiversaveraged C$25,000 after one year, and C$34,000 after 15 years. Even refugees, who averaged about C$17,500 in earnings after year one, were earning an average of C$30,000 after 15 years.Yes, that’s right. Refugees end up reporting higher wages to the Canadian taxman than millionaire migrants ever do. And two-thirds of all refugees declare income, bang on the Canadian average. The same tax data provides evidence of another inconvenient truth about millionaire migrants: They don’t seem terribly devoted to living in Canada once they have obtained citizenship.Three years after immigrating (the period of residency required to secure citizenship) around 47 per cent of IIP principal applicants reported earnings to Canada. But after another two years, their income-reporting rate had fallen steeply, to the aforementioned 39 per cent... why would someone who has enjoyed great economic success in one place (say, China), reject that in favour of trying their luck in a new country, unless compelled to do so? And once a passport is secured, there is nothing that prevents any Canadian, native-born or immigrant, from going wherever they wish to seek out further success."

How Goes the Behavior-Change Revolution?

How Goes the Behavior-Change Revolution? (Ep. 382) - Freakonomics Freakonomics

"NORTON: There’s complaintbragging and then there’s humblebragging. So complaintbragging, whenever someone online says, “Ugh,” right after that it’s going to be a complaintbrag. Just wait for it. It’s always a complaintbrag. So they say, “Ugh, wearing sweatpants and everyone’s still hitting on me.” One of my favorite ones ever was, “My hand is so sore from signing so many autographs.”So humblebragging, usually people recycle from Wayne’s World for some reason, “Not worthy.” So that’s — and whenever you see that, that means that here comes a humblebrag. “Not worthy,” and then say, “So honored to be onstage with Katy Milkman and Angela Duckworth.” So what I’m really just doing is saying, “I’m onstage with really important people, but I’m acting all humble about it.”The reason that people do these things, we can show in the research, is they’re feeling insecure. So I want to brag, always, because I want everyone to think I’m awesome. But I have the theory that if I brag, people won’t like me, because nobody likes a braggart. So we think what we can do is if we’re humble about it, then people will say, “Oh, what a nice guy. And also I learned that he knows celebrities.” And instead what people think is, “What a jerk.” So in fact we like braggarts, just straight-up braggarts, which is just saying, “I met a famous person.” We like them more than people who do this little strategy where they try to humblebrag...

Justin SYDNOR: Many of us now have choices to make about health insurance plans... most of the plans were a deal that no economist should take. So most of the plans were such that you were going to pay more for sure for the year if you chose that plan. Doesn’t matter if you turn out to be healthy or unhealthy. You’re going to pay more... what we found very quickly there is you get exactly the same patterns if you just give people four plans or two plans. So it’s really not about choice overload. It’s fundamentally that when people look at insurance, they can’t combine the premium and these out-of-pocket costs and make what looks like the rational math calculation... we’ve run some little experiments, and it looks like if you make it easier to compare the plans, you can really easily inform and improve these options.But maybe the bigger implication is that we should just stop giving people choices about this. And the reason we should stop giving people choices about this is that the only really good reason to give people choices is that we think that they might want to sort into plans that are good for them, and have some bearing on their risk aversion...

GILOVICH: You regret action more than inaction sometimes. But if you ask people what are your biggest regrets in life, they tend to report regrets of inaction. How do you reconcile those two? And the reconciliation is that you feel more immediate pain over the regret of action but, partly because it’s so painful, you do things about it. You think of it differently, and you’ve taken an action and one of the ways that you can come to grips with it is to say, “Well, it was a mistake, but I learned so much.” It’s hard to learn so much by not doing something new... a very frequent regret is one of not doing something because of a fear of social consequences. “What will people think?”... As David Foster Wallace put it, “You won’t mind so much, how people judge you when you recognize how little they do.”...

THALER: In England there’s a tradition, a hallowed tradition, of buying rounds. The way it’s done at the pub is you go with your mates and I would buy the first round and you would buy the second round and until we each bought a round.Now this has obvious problems if the number of people in the group is more than, say, three. What I suggested was that pubs institute a new policy, which is, for groups of more than three, they run a tab.Well, this was supposed to be a private meeting, but it leaked to the press and I got hate mail."

Libertarianism relies on humans being homo economicus - which is why it fails

Links - 25th September 2019 (2)

BBC World Service - The World This Week, Hong Kong protesters storm parliament - "‘While handshakes and photo ops are clearly better than threats of war, military tension, the normal diplomatic protocol would be to achieve something during negotiations before giving North Korea and the North Korean leader a valuable photo op with the US president. And some have called this disruptive diplomacy. You call it alternative diplomacy. Others say that it shows Mr. Trump prefers style over substance perhaps?’
‘Well, in defense of Donald Trump. Traditional diplomacy had not worked. I mean, there had been a vast sort of apparatus, six party talks grinding on year after year after year. North Korea was able to exploit them to play parties off within the talks and steam on with its nuclear program, developed more and more sophisticated ballistic missiles, apparently enhanced its warheads and put itself in a very dangerous position from the point of view of its neighbors, not least Japan who are terrified of these tests that take place over Japanese territory. So Donald Trump thought I better try something completely new. And all credit to him, he achieved apparent early breakthroughs, went far further in the process of engagement with North Korea's leader than anyone else had before. But has there been a really positive outcome? Certainly not yet.’
‘There also appear to be divisions in Washington at the moment over whether the US would settle for a nuclear freeze in North Korea rather than a ban. And some saw it as significant that Mr. Trump was accompanied to the DMZ by Mike Pompeo, the Secretary of State, who is seen as slightly less hawkish than John Bolton, who was sent off to Mongolia’"

BBC World Service - The World This Week, Sudan: Darfur comes to Khartoum - "[On Ebola] ‘One thing that shocks me reading about it is the level of disbelief amongst the population. It sounds as though about a third of people one survey suggested don't believe the virus exists’...
‘There's really only one way that you tackle Ebola. You find people who have it really quickly. And then you get them into a secure hospital setting where you can minimize the risk of them spreading it to other people. That relies so heavily on trust within a community. And without that trust you see what you're seeing in this Ebola outbreak, you're seeing around about a third of people dying at home in the community, not going to an Ebola treatment center, because there's not only the disbelief around Ebola, there's the lack of trust in the people there’"

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, How not to run a restaurant - "Food can be the most dangerous of all passions when it comes to business.
‘My head was saying look, this has nearly killed you’...
‘The restaurant trade is tough. You only have to look at the recent collapses Jamie Oliver's UK restaurant empire for proof of that.’
‘You see the pretty side. See that lovely interior of the restaurant, you know the open kitchen with the cool people with tattoos and big knives, cutting up things and talking about sous vide and pickling this and that. But on the other side of the cube is rats and garbage and no money to be had anywhere. It's, it's all these things you don't see on the other side of that cube. And I don't think anyone's really talked much about it.’..
‘I was guided by a light, a bright burning warm light that I followed around like a moth. And that light was Marco Pierre White portioning up a salmon in his kitchen in 1998. I wasn't looking at faulty plumbing, I wasn't looking at how much it costs to pay people to work for you and that they have their own needs and their own livelihoods to worry about. I didn't look at not seeing my kids for days at a time. I didn't see any of that. I was blinded by this light… I drank a lot. There's addiction issues in restaurants because the pressure is so high’...
I actually started to hate cooking, I hated to go into the grocery store, I hated food. My one day off a week, which wasn't really a day off, that was kind of an evening off, I guess, I’d go home and order pizza or something and just eat it on the couch with my kids. I wouldn't waste a second in my kitchen. But my love of food came back thank God. And now I come home after my job in an office. And I cook for my family and that hour of cooking gives me infinitely more pleasure than any second in that restaurant did"

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, The quest for black gold - "‘In South Korea's capital Seoul, landfill mountains once loomed over entire neighborhoods. But now more than 95% of food waste in the country is recycled. Up from just 2% in 1995’...
‘Like most people in Seoul, Buna [sp?] has to pay to get rid of it [her waste]’"
Doesn't charging people for food waste encourage over-eating?

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, When is a burger not a burger? - "‘They've deceptively used a meat counter that we've built a relationship for 60 plus years.’
‘Yeah, we, we sell millions of packs of vegetarian burgers and sausage and other meat replacements throughout Europe. We've never received complaints from people who have bought our products in error thinking it was meat... I'm pretty sure that people understand what is the actual meaning of the product. What is the actual content, as long as you clearly mark that is not just beef burger or burger, but it is plant based, vegan, etc.’"

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, President Ulysses S Grant - "One of the complicating factors of America’s Civil War and Reconstruction that followed it is that not every slaveholding state was part of the Confederacy. So you have states like Kentucky and Missouri, there are slave holding states that never joined the Confederacy. But they become, for some reason, they become the battle grounds, really, between African Americans and whites. There are more lynchings take place during Reconstruction in Kentucky, than any other time, when you think of lynching in the south, you tend to think of South Carolina, Mississippi, but actually, in the early years of reconstruction, it was Kentucky... Grant could have sent more troops into South Carolina. But you know, how would it have gone down if he sent troops into Kentucky? It wouldn't have made any sense. People would have said but these are not the states that formed the Confederacy, what are you doing?"

Historian Chris Parkes on the Stonewall Riots | History Extra Podcast - History Extra - "There was a backlash in a manner of speaking but it did not… come from the place that I suspect most people would imagine. The first real evidence of a backlash to the Stonewall Riots came from other gay people. It came from the more conservative elements in LGBT activism at the time, the homophile movement, who saw this as a disaster. They were horrified at a riot breaking out, that... queer people had rioted. They had thrown bottles at the police, that the rioters themselves had been people that these homophile activists didn't want associated with them. They were drag queens, they were street kids, they were transvestites. They were the people that were so, you know, lacking in dignity and in respect in polite society, that the calls that they were making, the homophile activists were making, for greater respect for homosexual people. They would never, it would never gain them respectability, if these calls for homosexual rights were associated with these terribly disrespectful drag queens and flame queens"

The Bad Hair, Incorrect Feathering, and Missing Skin Flaps of Dinosaur Art - "Elephants, zebras, and rhinos would all look pretty different if they were interpreted the same way dinosaurs are."

The great university con: how the British degree lost its value - "Over the past 30 years, successive governments, from Thatcher to Blair, to Cameron and May, have imposed a set of perverse incentives on universities. Their effect has been to degrade and devalue the quality of British degrees. Academic standards have collapsed. In many institutions, it is the students who now educate the universities, in what grades they will tolerate and how much work they are willing to do. “We have got to protect ourselves from complaints,” says Natalie Fenton, professor of media and communications at Goldsmiths, University of London. “It’s an endless process of dealing with students who haven’t been able to buy the grade they wanted.”  At a glance, British universities are a national success story. They have increased the number of undergraduate degrees they award fivefold since 1990, while the proportion of Firsts they hand out has quadrupled – from 7 per cent in 1994 to 29 per cent in 2019. For every student who got a First in the early 1990s, nearly 20 do now. Masters’ degrees, meanwhile, are nearly ten times as common as they were. Universities have, it seems, managed to surge in both size and quality. And they have done it all while spending comparatively little on teaching, and despite a wave of sudden changes to how they operate. In no other publicly funded sector has so dramatic an expansion seemingly cost so little and achieved so much. Our universities, we are regularly assured, are “world class”. They are a prime British export; international students flock to study in the UK... Oxbridge is leading the charge: 96 to 99 per cent of its English, history and languages students get “good honours”... “The logical conclusion of the current drift is that by 2061, 100 per cent of people [will] get Firsts,” says Anthony Seldon, vice-chancellor of the University of Buckingham. In fact, if the next 20 years are like the past 20, it won’t take half that time... “In schools now, students are being virtually spoon-fed, and that is feeding through.”... In 2007, Robert Coe, then a professor of education at Durham University, detailed the scale of the problem. Coe’s research looked at how students of similar inherent ability compared over time. By using a standardised test, similar to IQ, one could see how equivalent students had been graded differently at A-level. The results were startling. Those who were being given Ds and Es in the late 1980s were being given Bs and Cs by the mid-2000s. British pupils did not measurably improve on any international metric during that time, nor have they since... “Ideas that students readily understood ten to 15 years ago, they struggle to understand today,” Peter Dorey, professor of British politics at the University of Cardiff, told the Commons inquiry in 2009. “Many of them are semi-literate.” Dorey described seminars in which students sat listlessly, waiting to be told how to “pass our exams”. “They will brazenly admit to having read nothing”... when European students transfer to Britain, they describe the universities as “far less demanding” than their own... Employment rates among young adults are unimpressive. British productivity has been stagnant for the past decade, and the graduate premium is weaker than ever. Most tellingly, in 2016, when the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) studied basic skill levels among recent graduates from 23 countries, England ranked in the bottom third. According to their study, one in five graduates in England could not handle literacy tasks more complicated than understanding the instructions on a packet of aspirin, while the numeracy level of 28 per cent was limited to estimating the fuel left on a petrol gauge. These rates were around three times worse than the top eight countries, which spend around $19,000 per student. England spends $26,000 per student, more than any country except the US, which spends $30,000... Why does management impel lecturers to grade up? Because universities need good grades to rank highly in league tables... “brilliant teaching departments would be shut down if they didn’t publish research”. It would be irrational for a lecturer to focus on teaching. They must publish or perish... “It is the worst-kept secret in the academic world that, for unseen examination papers,” the committee was told, “most tutors provide their students with the contents of the paper beforehand.”“Difficult areas of the syllabus are either omitted in their entirety or simply not examined,” they heard. These failings persist. And now, as then, should these tricks fail, marks can always simply be “uplifted”... one in two recent British graduates is not in graduate work, a rate that has consistently risen since 2001
Yet, we are told, standardised tests are useless
So much for sending more and more people to university - just because you have a degree doesn't mean it's worth anything

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Oxbridge & private schools - "Cambridge now talking about taking people with Bs, we know that to get an A in A level maths this summer, you only had to get 55% of your questions answered correctly. So I think there is a serious worry some of the people going up from all sorts of schools will struggle when they’re there, they’re going to get a lot of fee debt, and won't have much to show for it at the end. That doesn't make anyone happy. Much more important is to place the emphasis on the quality of schooling, and the preparation
Since there's grade inflation they can just give everyone 'good honours'

My fellow lecturers won't say it in public, but students today are moaning, illiterate snowflakes - "When I tell people who have had nothing to do with universities recently that I’ve taught British undergraduates who are simply incapable of writing a correct sentence in English, most smirk in disbelief. Perhaps because I’m a writer of fiction they assume I’m indulging in some dramatic exaggeration. When I raise this with fellow lecturers, however, they nod mournfully.There is still a mania that everyone should go to university and every endeavour should be a degree (whether sculpting or golf management). It’s had a very bad effect on education.There’s an “everyone must pass” attitude, which is compounded by the “sick note” epidemic. The student who is currently suing Oxford University because it allegedly “didn’t take her anxiety seriously enough” isn’t an unusual figure... Almost every fourth essay you have to mark has a cover sheet pleading extenuating circumstances: Asperger’s, autism, anxiety, depression, ADHD, OCD, dyslexia, dyspraxia. In my day, extenuating circumstances meant that your family had died in a car crash a month before your finals. And if you don’t pass, no need to worry because you’ll almost certainly have the chance of a resit or a resubmission. Essentially, if you can be bothered to turn up, you’ll get a degree. When I suggested to my department head that it might be beneficial to axe one or two students to gee up the performance of the rest, he commented, without any hint of irony: “We can’t fail them, because then they’d leave.”I taught English literature for four years at Christ Church University in Canterbury. I taught some 120 first‑year undergrads, of whom I asked the question: “What is a sentence?”Only six came up with the formula: subject, verb, object (and two of them were foreign students). They hadn’t heard of this grammar stuff. Some were even shaky on what an adjective is. And these weren’t physicists or business studies students, this was the literature class. Everyone is guilty. The Labour Party for comprehensive education (I went to a comprehensive. It was indeed egalitarian, in that everyone got a mediocre education). Margaret Thatcher for the turn your shed-into-a-university policy. Tony Blair for abolishing the requirement for foreign languages.And then of course the Equality Act, which requires Universities to make “reasonable adjustment” for those less able. What a gloriously flexible, litigious word “reasonable” is. Again, I doubt many academics will go on record with this, but I had experiences with students who had some “disorder” who were extraordinarily able in using their disability to their advantage... In the humanities we seem to have a system where many students pay a lot of money, learn very little and gain very little employability. The students I mentioned who are functionally illiterate represent perhaps only one per cent, three, five? But there they are, at university.The real problem is the much larger group who don’t really have the tools to benefit fully from a course, which is quite often not that demanding.The educational absurdity of Dickens’s Dotheboys Hall in Nicholas Nickleby is being recreated in our arts faculties, where all you need to do is read a couple of books (or watch the DVDs), rehash some platitudes about racism, gender stereotypes, climate change and say Foucault to scrape a degree."

Hitler's War With Anglo-America

Brendan Simms On Hitler's War With Anglo-America | History Extra Podcast - History Extra

"Some of the most important things that we think we know about him, are actually not true. So for example, that communism and the Soviet Union was his main enemy. I argue that's not the case. It's actually Anglo American capitalism...

‘Often when we talk about Hitler's ideology about the German people, it's put in terms of strength, and, as you say, domination, but… he was actually quite insecure about the state of the German people’...

‘That's right. The key point I'm trying to get across is that although the so called negative eugenics of Hitler were extremely murderous, for example, involving the killing of 6 million Jews, the murder of gypsies and other so called undesirables… that would not be sufficient to ensure the survival of the German people and of the German race in a highly competitive world, which is dominated not only in his view, by the power of so called World Jewry, but also the Anglo Saxon powers, who are in turn, racially, extremely strong.

And he had a profound sense of Germany's demographic and one might say, racial weakness. And he argued this essentially, because he saw Germany as a fragmented polity, a country which was historically divided between Protestants and Catholics ever since the Reformation, divided by class, divided by ideology, and above all, also divided regionally. He's profoundly concerned, for example, by the phenomenon of Bavarian separatism, something which I think hasn't received enough attention in studies of Hitler in the 1920s. For example, the 1923 coup... is as much a move against Bavarian separatism as it is against the central government...

You see Anglo America as the kind of Racial Paragon… the embodiment of everything that's gone, right, from his point of view... a strong existing Anglo Saxon Nordic spine, which has been reinforced by waves of German emigration, on the one hand, and on the other hand, a German race, which has been weakened by this historical fragmentation that I alluded to earlier, undermined by successive waves of immigration, then these two things are, or as it were a mutually reinforcing...

‘So as well as this threat that he felt, America and Britain posed, Hitler also had a lot of admiration for what he saw as the Anglo US world. Can you give us some examples of, of aspects of Britain and America that he aspired to?’

‘Well, probably the most striking area of admiration is his admiration, not only for the British Empire, which is well known as a project of colonization overseas, but particularly also for settler colonialism in the United States, which he sees as the model for the eastern expansion. In fact, Eastern expansion is intended to create not so much a British India style arrangement, but more particularly a kind of a Western colonization of the American West model... admiration of these countries as the repositories of racial value…

[On racial segregation] Hitler's preoccupation is not with with African Americans. In fact, that's a phenomen he took virtually no interest in. The only known reference to my knowledge, to slavery is actually a negative one, where he refers to the slave trade as a barbaric phenomenon. What he’s profoundly concerned with is is what he regarded as the low value migration into the United States of Eastern Europeans, particularly also of Eastern European Jews. So what he's referring to with admiration is the 1924 Immigration Act, which imposes quotas and of course, discriminates against Eastern Europeans. That is what he admires. And what he's really saying is why can't we have the same in Germany? Why is it that, again, I stress from his point of view, we have a process of if you like negative selection, where the best Germans are going overseas as immigrants, from his point of view, lower quality migration is taking their place...

Hitler believed that, in the course of the 18th 19th and early 20th century, the German race had been severely weakened by immigration, which was the result of the lack of space, and that this migration, as I said earlier, had reinforced her rivals, and that in time of war, these migrants, and this was a crucial point would come back as enemy soldiers. And this is how he interpreted these American prisoners that I alluded to earlier on, in the 1920s... Germany is in some ways at war with its own migrants. It's a great irony, of course, that in Dwight Eisenhower, the Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, you had a German American coming back... [the] commander of the US Air Force, of course, was closely involved in the destruction of German cities, and particularly German industry, again, another German American. So these are profound ironies that Hitler actually brought about the very thing he most feared. But this emigration argument is central. And of course, it is the underpinning... for the project of living space...

Logically speaking, the German people that exists after 1919, or if you like, the dregs there, the Germans who have not emigrated to the United States, or to the British Empire…

In the late 1930s, he briefly experiments with the idea of an exchange. And this is again, if you like an obsessing, really quite grotesque plan, that he has in effect, to exchange German Americans for German Jews, because he has the problem in inverted commas, that he wants both to expel the Jews and to deprive them of their wealth. And the difficulty he has is that while some countries are prepared to accept Jews, virtually none want to take Jews who are, you know, completely indigent. And that's on the one hand, on the other hand, there are German Americans who are writing to the foreign office saying that they wish to leave the United States because, you know, their experiences experiencing discrimination, or they have made it economically. But they're having difficulties and returning across the Atlantic…

‘You suggest that you can't understand Hitler's anti semitism without understanding his anti capitalism. Can you explain the connections that he drew between Britain in the US and what he saw as International Jewry?’

‘Yes, he regards Anglo America, not only and this is somewhat of a paradox, not only as the repository of the high racial Nordic value, but also at the same time as the protagonist of international capitalism. So he sees London and New York as hubs of international capitalism, which is dominated by the Jews in his view... The paradox is that while he argues that Jews are corrupt, and in feeble states, for some reason that doesn't seem to corrupt or enfeeble the British Empire, or the United States, except insofar as it induces what he regards as a form of false consciousness in those states. In other words, that these states don't recognize, as they should do, from his point of view, that their true community of interest is with the German Reich, as opposed to fighting the German Reich’...

The attack on the Soviet Union in 1941, and the quest for Lebensraum is not actually driven primarily by concern about... communism, it's driven by concern about Anglo America. And living space in the east is simply a convenient, closely located area, you can control in a way that overseas expansion doesn't work, because the British and the Americans, but particularly the British, control the seas. And so the attack on the Soviet Union, in that sense is nothing personal, from the point of view of communism. Rather, he sees communism as an opportunity, says, this poor Soviet Union, they're afflicted with the virus of communism, and therefore, they will be more easy to take over. So from all those points of view, there's a clear hierarchy in Hitler’s mind of enemies. And the Soviet Union and communism, while serious threats are by no means as serious as as a threat from the British Empire, and from the United States. And you see this in fact, during the Second World War and the distribution of resources, contrary to many things you might read about the the overall importance of the Eastern Front...

Until the very end, even in his last will and testament, is, you know, he, he talks, you know, even as the Russians are overrunning Berlin, he's talking more about the bombing campaign, he's talking more about international capitalism than he was talking about the Soviet Union, and Bolshevism...

Next to his murderous, inverted commas, negative eugenics, he also had a, an equally problematic in some ways, concept of inverted commas, positive eugenics. In other words, how do I, and this was a phrase he used, raise up, in inverted commas, the German people to the same level as the Anglo Americans. That was a huge part of his project, I think that tends to be overlooked. This project of what he calls racial elevation, was absolutely critical to Hitler's so called positive eugenics. And essentially, Hitler's argument is that the attraction of Anglo America is one of standard of living.

So standard of living and living space are absolutely inextricably intertwined in his mind, because he says that unless we have living space, we will not be able to have a proper standard of living. If we don't have a proper standards of living, then people will emigrate. And by proper standard of living he meant matching the American dream with - this was not a phrase to use, but this is what effectively he meant - the German dream.

In other words, the Germans should have access to travel, they should have access to mod cons, to radios, to autobahns, they should be motorized, they should basically have all the things that people in Britain and particularly in the United States had. Once they had those, and once they had been engaged in the project of expansion in an imperialist project, they would then over decades, and over hundreds of years, elevate themselves to the level of Anglo America. So a point that's really important is timelines with Hitler. Hitler sees himself as part of a really long project, of which he will only see really the beginning. And he sees the British of his time, as the British who have developed over hundreds of years of having run the Empire, of having acquired by doing, in his view, the so called superior characteristics.

So with Hitler, there's always this tension between timelines. On the one hand, he's always in a hurry, because of circumstances, because his life is short, because Germany is in a dire situation. And on the other hand, he realizes that what really needs to be done requires hundreds of years and cannot be done in a shorter period."

Links - 25th September 2019 (1)

As it starts to implode, I no longer recognise Corbyn’s poisonous Labour party - "Our monthly constituency party meetings in Streatham featured a spectrum of opinions, but they were good-natured. When people disagreed, they did so in an agreeable fashion, and we usually would head to the pub for a pint after. This was the local Labour Party of around 600 members who selected me as their parliamentary candidate in March 2008. But the local party I left back in February 2019 was barely recognisable.There were around two and half thousand members, fewer than 500 of whom had been members before the summer of 2015. At the time I left Labour, most of those who selected me seven years beforehand had resigned from the local party or had stopped attending meetings, which had become unpleasant and often shouty encounters where you were defined by whether or not you were sympathetic to Momentum and a disciple of “Jeremy”. I witnessed the outright bullying of non-Corbynista members, and came to dread giving my parliamentary report at the meetings. Heckling and pointless points of order were the order of the day. Most of the dedicated group of moderate members who stayed came to dread these meetings too – you could endure them, but rarely enjoyed any more. In the end, the hard left took over. The picture I paint of my local experience was far more rosy than many a tale I’ve heard in the parliamentary Labour Party. A large number of former colleagues have experienced far worse... Just 15 per cent of today’s Labour members are proud of Britain’s history, most blame Britain and not the IRA for terrorist attacks in Northern Ireland, 69 per cent now blame Western governments instead of groups like al-Qaeda and Isis for Islamist terrorist attacks on the streets of Britain or think they are equally to blame as the groups that plan and execute them. Less than one in four thinks Labour has a serious problem with antisemitism despite the avalanche of evidence under Corbyn’s leadership; the majority think the accusations are down to the media or Corbyn’s opponents. And in one particularly disturbing figure, 51 per cent think a Labour government should take greater control of broadcast media. This paints a pretty disturbing picture of illiberal, authoritarian attitudes – and that’s putting it generously. It also explains why, in order to quash any dissent from St Jeremy’s views, the hard left attempted to abolish the deputy leader, Tom Watson."

Dave Rich on Twitter - "Today's Observer reports Jeremy Corbyn on Press TV in 2012 saying "the hand of Israel" was behind Jihadist terrorism in Egypt. But there was another interesting guest on that show with Corbyn: a convicted Hamas terrorist called Dr Abdul Aziz Umar
Here is Umar ("Brother Amr") via satellite with Corbyn and Lauren Booth. He got seven life sentences for helping to organise a Hamas suicide bombing in Jerusalem in 2003 that killed seven people. He was released in the 2011 Gilad Shalit deal...
So what did Corbyn have to say about this convicted Hamas terrorist? "You have to ask the question why they are in prison in the first place... I'm glad that those who were released were released, I hope they're now in safe places"
He had even met Umar before: "I met many of the brothers including the brother who's been speaking here when they came out of prison, when I was in Doha earlier this year." So now we can add "brothers" to "friends" as the words Corbyn uses to describe Hamas...
I'm sure we'll be told Corbyn doesn't condone violence, just cares about prisoner welfare, doesn't think Hamas terrorists are his "brothers", etc etc. But that's not what it looks like here.
A postscript to this thread: Corbyn's appearance on Press TV was in August 2012, seven months AFTER Press TV lost its Ofcom licence for broadcasting the forced interrogation of a prisoner in Iran."

Jeremy Corbyn told Labour will be crushed over Brexit as leader faces party revolt - "Jeremy Corbyn is facing a full-scale revolt over his Brexit policy after senior party figures warned Labour will be crushed at the next election if he continues to sit on the fence... a new poll showed the majority of people who voted Labour in the 2017 election now think Mr Corbyn should quit."

No more free schools, Labour pledges - "There will be no more free schools under a future Labour government, the shadow education secretary has said... Nick Timothy, director of the New Schools Network which supports opening free schools, said: "Free schools are better placed to give parents what they want and drive up standards because they give more control to head teachers, teachers and governors, rather than politicians and bureaucrats... "Rather than trusting heads and teachers to run their schools, Labour would return to the failed model of schools micromanaged by bureaucrats and politicians, undoing everything we've done to extend opportunity and give families security."The statement added: "Our reforms have seen more 11-year-olds leaving school able to read, write and add up properly, a narrowing of the achievement gap between pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds and their peers and a million more pupils in good and outstanding schools.""

Could Labour really ban private schools? - "Could Labour really abolish private schools? That's the big question after the party's conference voted to "integrate" private schools into the state sector.The plan would see the assets of private schools "redistributed".Universities would have a quota imposed of admitting no more than 7% of their students from private schools, so their numbers were in keeping with their proportion in the overall school population.And private schools would lose their charitable status and tax exemptions... Within hours of its announcement, the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference, representing a group of private schools, warned the policy would be "tested in the courts for years to come".The private schools could be expected to challenge its legitimacy and ask why they were being singled out for such confiscations of private property and why other forms of non-state education - whether it's nurseries, private tutors, universities or driving schools for that matter - were not... The Independent Schools Council has even suggested it could breach human rights legislation - could you stop parents from exercising the right to pay for the education of their choice?... the state sector would struggle to take on so many new pupils.It would "shift billions of pounds of additional cost on to the taxpayer and would cause massive disruption to students and staff", he said. It would mean almost another 600,000 pupils entering the state system - more than the school population of Wales. And with average per pupil spending at about £6,000 per year, that would add around £3.6bn to the annual cost of running the school system... The language of "redistribution" is almost self-consciously revolutionary.And the phrasing of the motion echoes Labour's radical manifesto from 1983, which promised to end charitable status and "integrate private schools within the local authority". But it's also worth noting that this manifesto, under Labour leader Michael Foot, has been described as the "longest suicide note in history"... Although "private schools" is used as a shorthand for bastions such as Eton and Harrow - in practice, many independent schools are small, local places, often with pretty threadbare finances.Would there be much public support for seeing these smaller institutions, often with deep local roots, being shut down?"
The easiest way to achieve equality is to make everyone equally miserable

Labour would replace 'unfit for purpose' Ofsted - "Schools minister Nick Gibb said the announcement was "another sign of the extreme left-wing ideological drift that Jeremy Corbyn's Labour party has taken"."Now they want to stop parents having even the most basic information so that they can make informed choices about their children's schools""

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Fast fashion: The carbon footprint - "‘We're buying five times as many items of clothing as we were 30 years ago. I'm in the UK where we’re the worst culprits of but it's very hard to walk past one of your stores and see a dress saying 29 pounds 99. You don't need to wait till payday, you can buy it now, many of the people we’ve spoken to saying if you’re serious about sustainability, put the prices up, we need to buy less’‘Each person is free to decide how much he or she like to buy at any point in time. Or if this person wants to spend money going to a restaurant or buying clothes. This is the freedom that each person has’
When leftists want companies to charge more, so the poor can't afford their products. Ahh...

BBC Radio 4 - Moral Maze, The Morality of Fashion - "'So I too have been to Bangladesh, I have talked to academic researchers looking at what actually is the effect of the wages that are being paid in these sweatshops. And it's beneficial, these wages are higher than alternative occupations. Paul Krugman has written an absolutely superb essay called Ricardo’s difficult idea, pointing out that in the absence of sweatshops in the Philippines, people are trying to eat the rubbish heaps of Smoky Mountain. This is an advance'…
‘I'm trying to say, just this contrast, which ordinary people look at between people wearing incredibly expensive fashion garments, and the people who make them being paid almost not enough to live on and to eat off. Is that contrast in and of itself immoral?’
‘No. The question we really ought to be asking is, how do we improve matters, and you make poor people richer’...
‘I guess what you're talking about there is you specifically thinking about women and the body issues argument and the pressure on women to adhere to certain beauty standards. Isn't that making a judgment about women's capabilities to be moral agents, and as I said, understand these pressures within the fashion industry, which are obvious. And then rise above it?’
‘Well, it's not just women and girls, actually, increasing number of boys and men are reporting mental health issues around their body image... research actually shows that men tend to be less confident... about their body image than women are… I think [diversity’s] a step in the right direction, I still believe that there will be a large proportion of the population that are vulnerable to aspiration beyond attainment.’
‘And what's wrong with having an aspiration that's beyond attainment? Because I think part of what fashion is about you could argue, is doing something different with yourself... isn't... focusing on the mental health aspect of it needing to represent us just going further down that kind of narcissistic spiral of the fashion industry?’...
‘I'm trying to think about what is it specifically about fashion, which, which bothers me, and there is something about this gap between the sort of peacocking consumption that goes on in a beautiful suit or dress or something, and the conditions of poverty. Now we can, we can argue about the ways in which poverty is alleviated. But that gap that exists there, and the fact that one is premised on the other, still, irrespective of how you resolve one, makes me feel, I think lots of people feel distinctly uncomfortable.’
‘But that's because your main problem is not with the poor, it’s with the rich.’
‘It’s both. It’s both I have a problem, you and I disagree about this, I do have a problem with excessive wealth, as well as, as well as with excessive poverty, definitely’...
‘Fashion had become democratized and affordable, that if we're looking at, you know, you've been very snooty about fast fashion and cheap dresses and throwaway culture and everything. But you know, a couple of generations ago, poor people didn't have any of these opportunities’
‘Well I agree. And when I put that, therefore, her solution would be to make it unaffordable, and to deprive people, poor people of the ability of obtaining these garments, and make them only affordable by the rich, she didn't seem to follow that logic.’"

BBC World Service - The World This Week, Trump's racism row - "Many China watches think that China's GDP figures can't necessarily be relied on, although the feeling is that they're more reliable than they used to be. Now the reason for that is that the combined GDP in China comes from different provinces. Now some provinces, in order to gain more support from the national government will downplay their GDP, and others will exaggerate it in order to show off...
Worth his or her weight in gold, is a well known turn of phrase. But for many modern big stars, it now seems hopelessly out of date. Let's illustrate the point with the most expensive ever football transfer. That was the Brazilian striker Neymar when he moved from Barcelona to Paris St-Germain in 2017. The fee was 222 million euros, equivalent to about a quarter of a billion dollars. When he went to Barcelona, his weight was reported to be about 64 kilograms. The club was said to be concerned that he was a bit too light for the rigors of Spanish football, and wanted him to bulk up a bit. So let's use a slightly higher figurative value him, say 70 kilograms… On those numbers, the Brazilian players weight in gold would have cost you four and a half million dollars. You couldn't possibly buy a Neymar for that money, you couldn't quite manage 2% of him, at least at his 2017 valuation… Is there anything else that Neymar would be worth his weight in? The most expensive spice saffron? No. And that's quite a relief. I'm very partial to paella... What about diamonds? The pricing is complex. But if you could get enough high quality and large diamonds together, you can beat the price of the Brazilian star, you'd also have to spend quite a lot on security and insurance"

BBC World Service - The World This Week, Boris takes centre stage - "When I lived in Paris, I had an apartment in a part of the city, where the streets were named after 18th century scientists, the botanists Carl Linnaeus and the Comte du Buffon among others. I admired this public veneration for learning and thought of it as characteristically French. There's a botanical garden nearby called the Jardin des Plantes. Go and check it out a British friend advised me when I first moved there, there's a statute to the scientist to develop the theory of evolution as the origin of species. Why would the French put up a monument to the quintessentially English Charles Darwin I wondered? It was only when I stood in front of it, that I saw that of course, it's not Darwin. It's the French biologist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck. The history of science in the English speaking world has relegated Lamarck to a minor role, but he prefigured Darwin by a generation and in France, he not Darwin remains the father of the theory of evolution. We tell our national stories, and we people them with our own national heroes. France has been fighting a rearguard action for its place in the world for generations. It is a story of a long slow retreat from the condition of Empire. The former British Prime Minister Anthony Eden said famously uncontroversially that after the Second World War, the French had, in the end, forgiven Germany for invading and occupying their country, but not forgiven America for liberating it... France’s sense of its place and purpose in the world was battered when Rwanda, hitherto part of La Francophonie, the community of French speaking nations, joined the Commonwealth… [On English replacing French as an administrative language] How much worse than that is this latest rejection of French in Algeria, a country which within living memory was not just a French territory, but an integral part of metropolitan France itself?"

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Links - 24th September 2019 (2)

Police Erased Suspects Face Tattoos for Line-Up Photo - "A federal court in Oregon is evaluating whether Portland police violated the rights of a bank robbery suspect by digitally removing the man’s face tattoos from his mugshot and using the altered image in a photo lineup. The question before the court is whether the photo constitutes fabricated evidence... Appearing before U.S. District Judge Marco A. Hernandez, Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul Maloney said police were right to alter Allen’s photo before presenting it to eyewitnesses.“The whole idea was to make Mr. Allen blend in so his photo wouldn’t stand out’’ in the lineup, Maloney said.Maloney argued that police changed Allen’s picture so that it would emulate the disguise worn by Allen when he committed the robberies."

Yes, Immigration Hurts American Workers - "Here’s the problem with the current immigration debate: Neither side is revealing the whole picture. Trump might cite my work, but he overlooks my findings that the influx of immigrants can potentially be a net good for the nation, increasing the total wealth of the population. Clinton ignores the hard truth that not everyone benefits when immigrants arrive. For many Americans, the influx of immigrants hurts their prospects significantly.This second message might be hard for many Americans to process, but anyone who tells you that immigration doesn’t have any negative effects doesn’t understand how it really works. When the supply of workers goes up, the price that firms have to pay to hire workers goes down. Wage trends over the past half-century suggest that a 10 percent increase in the number of workers with a particular set of skills probably lowers the wage of that group by at least 3 percent. Even after the economy has fully adjusted, those skill groups that received the most immigrants will still offer lower pay relative to those that received fewer immigrants. Both low- and high-skilled natives are affected by the influx of immigrants. But because a disproportionate percentage of immigrants have few skills, it is low-skilled American workers, including many blacks and Hispanics, who have suffered most from this wage dip. The monetary loss is sizable. The typical high school dropout earns about $25,000 annually. According to census data, immigrants admitted in the past two decades lacking a high school diploma have increased the size of the low-skilled workforce by roughly 25 percent. As a result, the earnings of this particularly vulnerable group dropped by between $800 and $1,500 each year... immigration redistributes wealth from those who compete with immigrants to those who use immigrants—from the employee to the employer. And the additional profits are so large that the economic pie accruing to all natives actually grows... When we look at the overall value of immigration, there’s one more complicating factor: Immigrants receive government assistance at higher rates than natives. The higher cost of all the services provided to immigrants and the lower taxes they pay (because they have lower earnings) inevitably implies that on a year-to-year basis immigration creates a fiscal hole of at least $50 billion—a burden that falls on the native population. What does it all add up to? The fiscal burden offsets the gain from the $50 billion immigration surplus, so it’s not too farfetched to conclude that immigration has barely affected the total wealth of natives at all. Instead, it has changed how the pie is split... Those winners are primarily their employers. And the immigrants themselves come out ahead, too. Put bluntly, immigration turns out to be just another income redistribution program... we’re worrying about the wrong things, with policy fights focused on how many and which immigrants to accept, and not enough on how to mitigate the harm they create along the way."
Ironically, those who push for uncontrolled immigration are the same ones who push for higher minimum wages - and then say without immigrants working below minimum wage, the economy would collapse

How the Jews invented God, and made him great - "Jews, Christians and Muslims all believe in a single, omnipotent deity that created the heavens and earth. But if he was and is the only god, why would God need a name? The Bible explicitly tells us that God has one, which indicates he had to be distinguished from other celestial beings, just like humans use names to identify different people... Modern biblical scholarship and archaeological discoveries in and around Israel show that the ancient Israelites did not always believe in a single, universal god. In fact, monotheism is a relatively recent concept, even amongst the People of the Book... The main source for investigating the history of God is, of course, the Bible itself.  When exactly the Jewish holy text reached its final form is unknown. Many scholars believe this happened sometime between the Babylonian exile, which began after the fall of Jerusalem in 587 BCE (some 2600 years ago), and the subsequent periods of Persian and Hellenistic rule.  However, the redactors of the Bible were evidently working off older traditions, Römer says.  “Biblical texts are not direct historical sources. They reflect the ideas, the ideologies of their authors and of course of the historical context in which they were written”... the name "Israel" is probably older than the veneration of Yhwh by this group called Israel, Römer says. “The first tutelary deity they were worshipping was El, otherwise their name would have been Israyahu.”... Yhwh’s penchant for appearing in the biblical narrative on top of mountains and accompanied by dark clouds and thunder, are also typical attributes of a deity originating in the wilderness, possibly a god of storms and fertility... Nor, in ancient Israel, was Yhwh the invisible deity that Jews have refrained from depicting for the last two millennia or so.In the kingdom of Israel, as Hosea 8 and 1 Kings 12:26-29 relate, he was often worshipped in the form of a calf, as the god Baal was. (1 Kings 12:26-29 explains that Jeroboam made two calves, for the sanctuaries at Bethel and Dan, so the people could worship Yhwh there and wouldn’t have to go all the way to Jerusalem. Ergo, in northern Israel at least, the calves were meant to represent Yhwh.)In Jerusalem and Judah, Römer says, Yhwh more frequently took the form of a sun god or a seated deity. Such depictions may have even continued after the destruction of Jerusalem and the Babylonian Exile... many scholars agree that Yhwh became the main god of the Jews only after the destruction of the kingdom of Israel by the Assyrians, around 720 BCE."

How America's alt-right got its signature hairstyle - "The Washington Post article took a humorous look at the evolution the hairstyle has undergone in the past months, from hipster affectation to neo-fascist show of power: “Until a few weeks ago, you saw a man with that haircut and assumed he might be a good person to hit on, or to buy small-batch beer from, or to ask the whereabouts of the nearest bicycle shop. Now you see him and wonder if he’s trying to deport half the nation.”"

Alice Teller on Twitter - "Have you ever noticed the popularity of white robots? The reason for these shades of technological white may be racism, according to new research."
"Quite right, CNN. Any fool an see that robots with no rights, who exist purely to serve us without pay should be black."

Dzar Ismail - Don't talk to me about racism lah. I was rejected... - "Don't talk to me about racism lah. I was rejected for roles so many times because of my skin colour. And the whole decision board is Malay. Settle your internal racism first. "
On racism in Singapore
Presumably the logic of not throwing the first stone or the criticism of hypocrisy don't apply to minorities

Here's Why It’s Not Cool That Donald Trump Wants The Constitution Interpreted The Way The Founding Fathers Did
Strange how when it comes to the census counting non-citizens, we must follow the Founding Fathers' intent

Psychiatrist on CNN says Trump may be responsible for more deaths than Hitler. - "“Calling Trump crazy hides the fact that we’re crazy for having elected him,” Frances said on CNN’s Reliable Sources. “And even crazier for allowing his crazy policies to persist. Trump is as destructive a person in this century as Hitler, Stalin, and Mao were in the last century. He may be responsible for many million more deaths than they were. He needs to be contained, but he needs to be contained by attacking his policies, not his person.”"

*curl up and look frightened*"

Yasmine Mohammed ياسمين محمد 🦋 on Twitter - "I got an email from Twitter telling me this tweet is in violation of UK law...not Pakistani this time, UK I asked for clarification as to which law prohibits ppl from stating historical fact. I havent heard back yet"

Segments of Random Thoughts - Posts - "The Muslim conquests in India killed tens of millions of people.But yeah, let’s only talk about the British, cause racism."
"The conquest of Afghanistan in the year 1000 was followed by the annihilation of the Hindu population; the region is still called the Hindu Kush, i.e. Hindu slaughter. The conquest of the Vijayanagar empire in 1564 left the capital plus large areas of Karnataka depopulated"

Why Women Are Likelier to Be Hurt in a Car Crash - "“We obviously know a lot of ways that men and women are different bio-mechanically,” he says, in terms of both body size and shape. Female pelvises, for example, are generally wider and more shallow than those of males, and fat is distributed differently. Females typically have more tissue concentrated around the waist and thighs, while in males it’s more concentrated around the belly.“These differences … have the potential to change the ways that seatbelts interact with the body and with our underlying skeletal structures,” Forman said. Subtler deviations exist, too, like the fundamental mechanical properties of bones and ligaments and tissues; hormonal variations can affect the stiffness of tissues and their susceptibility to injury."

Automobile injury trends in the contemporary fleet: Belted occupants in frontal collisions - "Females exhibited a greater risk of lower extremity injury, even after adjusting for age, height, BMI, and delta-V. This suggests that sex itself has an effect on injury tolerance, affecting the tolerance in a manner distinct from differences in anthropometry or collision exposure. Biomechanical factors that may contribute to differences in injury tolerance may include bone mineral density (with earlier onset of osteoporosis in women), differences in local bone and ligament geometry, and differences in bone and ligament material properties"
Women are more prone to injury

My (33F) husband's (35M) career in academic philosophy is ruining our marriage.

My (33F) husband's (35M) career in academic philosophy is ruining our marriage.

"My husband and I are both academics. We've been married for 3 years, and been together for 6. He is an academic philosopher and I am a physicist. He has recently expressed displeasure that I've never seriously engaged with his work. Now, I've read a bit of the classics of philosophy, but my husband's work is more in what I'm told is called the "continental" tradition. Unfortunately, everything he's shown me has just seems completely insane.

Here's the problem: his work apparently involves claims about physics that are just wrong, and wrong in a very embarrassing way! I'll admit, I'm a terrible person, but I had never read his thesis before. I tried reading it and it's riddled with talk about for instance the necessary relationship between matter having "extension" and possessing mass. He also talks about the "shape" of fundamental particles. This is obviously nonsensical/wrong; electrons have mass and are point particles (they don't take up space really). In the thesis and some other papers he wrote he seems to think of himself as "scientific" and a "materialist" but his entire idea of what these words mean is stuck in like, outdated 19th century ideas about atoms as little billiard balls flying around in space. I've gently tried to help him and explain how he might start to engage seriously with contemporary physics (he has never read a book on the subject and is by his own admission "bad at math"), but he just gets angry with me and explains that Hegel's system is presuppositional and the basis for all possible rational thought so there is no need at all to read other texts in the first place (I have no idea what this means). He will throw out terms like "speculative propositions" but when I ask him to explain what this means or give me examples he just starts giving me more inscrutable jargon that makes no sense. On top of that, he will repeatedly say German phrases or terms that he uses (and pronounces) incorrectly (I am a native speaker) or nonsensically. He claims to understand the language (he doesn't) and tells me that Hegel can only be understood "in the original German" but he clearly can't read the language and when I've tried to read the original texts they make even less sense.

On top of this, his obsession with Hegel himself has reached the point of creepiness. At one point he literally told me that all other work either agrees with Hegel so is redundant, or disagrees with Hegel and is wrong. He keeps a framed picture of Hegel on the nightstand in our bedroom. In fact, he even changed his phone's background from a picture of me to this same picture of Hegel. I feel like I am competing with a 200 year old philosopher for my husband's attention.

Recently we got in a huge fight because he was trying to demonstrate an example of the Hegelian concept of the "unity of opposites" (whatever that means) by claiming that right and left hands are opposite but also identical. I told him this is just wrong and that right and left hands are not "identical" in any meaningful sense (chirality is a basic concept in geometry/group theory: left and right hands are not superimposable). He kept putting his hands together and tried to show how they were "identical" and kept failing (because they're not) and then got angry and stormed out of the house. I haven't seen him since (this was about a day ago) and texted him and haven't heard back.

What do I do Reddit? Do I just let this go? It's immensely frustrating that my account of my own field is not being taken seriously. He asked me to engage with his work, so I did. But it seems like he won't repay me in kind. He has told me repeatedly that Hegel makes empirical science unnecessary and implied that my work is a waste of time and that I should just be studying German idealism instead and read people like "Fichte" and "Schelling" (who are apparently very popular in Germany but I've never heard of them). Why is it okay for him to belittle my field but I can't offer mild criticism of his?

TL;DR: My husband's academic work is embarrassingly wrong and can't take any criticism."

If this is a troll, it's a brilliant one

Comments on reddit (the post got wiped):

"ngl, just reading this i'm confused as to how he has anything approacing a career.
OP, cut him loose because his bullshit will reflect on you."

"Sorry OP. Life's too short to spend it married to a moron"

This mirrors comments on Slate Dear Prudence Facebook posts - Westerners are very casual about relationships, even about marriages

Also, indicating this might be real after all:

"Are you married to my ex? Down to the Hegel similarities."

Links - 24th September 2019 (1)

Most vitamins may be a waste of money, but study finds two exceptions - "The majority of vitamins and other nutritional supplements don’t increase lifespan or protect one’s heart health, a huge analysis out of Johns Hopkins University has found. There were two exceptions to the findings related to folic acid and omega-3 fatty acid supplements, however, while one particularly popular vitamin and mineral combination was linked to an increase in stroke risk... taking a vitamin D and calcium combo supplement was associated with a slight uptick in stroke risk.A growing number of studies have found that most adults do no need to take vitamins or other dietary supplements — in fact, some past researchers has found an association between certain supplements and decreased lifespan. Though that remains in contention, experts largely recommend that nutrients come from healthy food, not pills and tablets, in order to reap the benefits."

Interracial Marriage and Divorce - "Divorce rates among interracial couples are slightly higher than divorce rates among same-race couples... In 2002, the Center for Disease Control published statistics about divorce rates that showed interracial marriages were more likely to end in divorce than same-ethnic marriages — 41 percent versus 31 percent... One census study found that interracial couples that married young were more likely to divorce than interracial couples that married later... Marriages between a black husband and white wife were twice as likely to divorce as marriages involving a white husband and white wife. When adjusted for background aspects such as age at marriage and educational level, differences between black male/white female marriages and white male/white female marriages virtually disappeared in some cases... Asian male/white female marriages were 59 percent more likely to end in divorce than white male/white female marriages.
Marriages involving a white husband and black wife were substantially less likely to end in divorce than marriage involving a white husband and white wife; the former pairing’s divorce rate was 44 percent less than the latter...
Marriages including a black husband and white wife were more prone to divorce than those composed of black husbands and black wives. Black male/white female couples also had the highest likelihood of divorce of all white/non-white marriages.
While interracial marriage correlates to a higher rate of divorce, this parallel applies mainly to marriages involving a non-white male and white female."

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, Baristas: The daily grind - "I don't know if a lot of people do know that India was a coffee country before it became a tea country. Just that when, when the English was here, they started the entire idea of tea drinking and tea exporting and the business of tea"

Raheem Kassam on Twitter - ""Living here is very difficult for any type of family."@Noel_Phillips meets a family living in a converted shipping container in Ealing, offered to them as temporary accommodation. Mother Lulu Akubaker says it's not fit for people to live in. "
"Imagine coming into a country and then complaining you aren’t being given a big enough free house. My bedroom when I was growing up was smaller than the room shown in this clip."
Comment: "This looks bigger than most council houses people live in."
"People are purposely building small homes to minimize their footprint on the planet and this woman is complaining her free home isn't good enough."
"That would be a 3000dollar a month apartment in San Francisco. What happened to be thankful for what you have?"

Ms Nevada: Katie Williams stripped of title after sharing right-wing comments online - "“ALL the pageant asked of Ms Williams, in writing, is to keep separate social media accounts. One is for politics where she can voice her own opinion as Katie Williams and the other is a new Facebook page for the pageant representing Ms Nevada State 2019.“None of this had to do with her personal political views. They are immaterial. She has her personal Facebook page to voice her political views. She could be a President Trump supporter on her personal Facebook page all she wants for everyone to read. However, the Ms Nevada Facebook page should be devoid of political content.”"

Willie Myrick video: Abducted child set free after annoying his kidnapper by SINGING gospel songs

Tomi Lahren on Twitter - Upscale Vandal: "You and everyone who helped you produce this should kill yourselves"
"Apparently @Twitter doesn’t see any issue with a verified account telling me and others to “kill ourselves.”"
Lucky Upscale Vandal didn't say something truly horrifying, like misgender a trans person

‘No snitches’ code feeds gun violence - "One of the people killed during this spree, a 28-year-old Queens resident named Arsenio Gravesande, summed up the challenges that law enforcement officials encounter in going after chronic gun violence with three words.When asked by the NYPD to identify the person who shot him, he said, “F- -k you, son!” It was one of the last things he uttered before dying from a gunshot wound to his hip.The refusal to snitch out of a pathological hatred for police is nothing new. We’re all familiar with the phrase, “Snitches get stitches,” which is common street code.But as New York City contends with a rise in shootings in some communities, we simply cannot afford to let this mindset hamper law enforcement’s efforts to make our neighborhoods safer.I served in the NYPD for 22 years, and I can vividly recall trying to extract information from people who refused to cooperate. Not only did it make our jobs harder, it often hurt those who were abiding by the street code the most.It’s no secret that gun violence impacts young men of color, like Mr. Gravesande, the most... One case from my days on the force illustrates this dynamic. During one midnight tour while I served as the platoon commander in the 88th Precinct, we received reports of a shooting. The young man who was shot knew the perpetrator, but he refused to tell us who shot him, and the gun and shooter remained on the streets. A few days later, the victim’s younger brother was also shot, the same tragic, yet preventable, fate.We must not and will not allow shooters and criminals to find safe haven in the communities they victimize. Upholding a code of silence only serves to promote violence."
Far easier to blame white people

Kukubird, the fashion brand, rides on Singapore interest by offering 'special' - "Kukubird, the fashion brand from the UK that shares an unfortunate name with our local slang for penis, is now penetrating the Singapore market by offering a "special rate" to customers here.This comes after the internet spotted Kukubird's existence half the world away recently... When asked why a British label is suddenly holding a Singapore promotion, they replied, "We at Kukubird have received so much love and support from Singapore recently, so we have decided to give a special rate to our Singaporean customers in order to return the love!"But perhaps it has to do with reports linking Kukubird the brand with "kukubird" the slang.The word made the headlines after undergraduates were filmed chanting to it at a Nanyang Technological University (NTU) freshman orientation camp."

Man charged with mobility scooter drink driving at Skegness McDonald's drive-thru

How I learned to live with a name that's a constant source of humiliation - "My name—my given name—is Fuk-yu (馥瑜)... the owner replied with an apology. He had reviewed the security footage, which resulted in the staff members involved losing two days’ pay and taking a sensitivity class... Was I happy about the outcome? I wasn’t sure. The owner was sincere, but what if the employees’ families depended on that money? I also began to realize I shouldn’t have expected strangers to understand my complex identity. Why should I expect others to have contextual knowledge about my culture, and my name?The next time you hear me explaining my Chinese name, that’s me trying to let the world know that my name is more than an unfortunate transliteration. If I don’t take the opportunity to draw interest to the meaning behind it, what the world would take away from an exchange with me might be only what sounds to them like a rather hilarious name. That’s not what I want my legacy to be."
I thought this was going to conclude with a rant about "racism", but happily it ended on a bright note

The mistake that led to a £1.2bn business - "When Kristo Kaarmann was kicking himself for being "incredibly stupid", little did he know that it would spark an idea for a business that is now estimated to be worth more than £1.2bn.Back in 2008, the then 28-year-old Estonian was working in London as a management consultant when he got a very chunky Christmas bonus of £10,000.As interest rates were higher back in Estonia, he decided that he'd transfer the money from his UK current account to his Estonian savings account, so as to earn more from the cash. "So I paid my UK bank a £15 fee, and transferred the £10,000, and then a week later I saw that £500 less than I had expected had arrived in the Estonian account," says Kristo, now 38."I started digging to find out what had happened, and I realised that I had been incredibly stupid."I had foolishly expected that my UK bank would have given me the exchange rate I saw when I looked on [news wires] Reuters and Bloomberg."Instead the bank had used an exchange rate 5% less favourable, which is how it and all the other banks get their cut. It was my mistake."Annoyed with himself, Kristo vowed to come up with a way of transferring money overseas that removed banks from the process... in 2011 they launched London-based TransferWise, a financial technology or "fintech" website that allows users to transfer money overseas to a different currency at the mid-market rate for a set fee of 0.5%. Today, TransferWise is a global business, and investors include Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson and PayPal co-founder Max Levchin."

Top Workplace TransferWise lets employees come as they are - "One of the interview questions at TransferWise was: On a scale of 1 to 10, how weird are you?"I said 'a solid 7,' '' Maquire says. "It was intended to show if you're trustable, teachable and smart.'' He was hired."

Britain's strictest school's first GCSE results are four times better than national average - "Britain's strictest school has received its first ever GCSE results after opening five years ago - and they are four times better than the national average... Headteacher Katharine Birbalsingh has come under criticism in the past for her "strict" methods at the free school, which aim to instill private school-esque order in state school children.The school has a number of unusual rules, including silence in the corridor and it has a strict "no excuses" policy where pupils are given detention for coming to school one minute late.They are also penalised for not completing homework or if the work is scruffy, for not having the correct stationery , or for tutting, rolling eyes, or "persistently turning around in class".Its policy is based on "tough love"... "If a school is too permissive, allowing too many exceptions, it risks creating helplessness, selfishness or dependence in its pupils rather than responsibility, consideration and agency. If a school reduces its standards for poorer pupils because of their poverty or difficult home life, it does them a disservice; frankly, it doesn’t believe in them enough"... "She fought the bureaucracy to establish a free school. Many of her intake came from disadvantaged backgrounds. She put her trust in old-fashioned teaching methods. Now, five years on, this is the result."The headteacher had previously vowed never to teach in the state sector again and said at the Conservative Party Conference in 2010 that working in the state sector had turned her into a conservative.She said at the time: "In schools and in society, we need high expectations, of everyone, even if you're black, or live on a council estate – Why can't they sit exams at the end of the year?"We need to rid the classrooms of chaos by unshackling heads and setting our schools free.""
Strange, liberal pedagogy tells us they should be doing very badly since they're harshly treated instead of coddled, suffering from white supremacy and are not getting accommodated

New Data Breach Has Exposed Millions Of Fingerprint And Facial Recognition Records: Report - "The issue with biometric data being stored in this way is that, unlike usernames and passwords, it cannot be changed. Once it’s compromised, it’s compromised"

The bizarre fallout from that assault on two lesbians - "Talk about ungrateful. Brits, and people around the world, offered empathy and solidarity to the two gay women who were battered by thugs on a London bus. And yet now one of the women has turned around and told us we only care about them because they are white. It’s only because they are ‘two attractive, white, cisgender women’ that so many people and organisations gave a damn about them and tweeted about them, apparently. Thanks a bunch. We offer our human concern for your wellbeing and you tell us we’re being racist. We’ve reached peak identitarian bollocks... What is most striking about her piece is that she flagellates herself for her privilege. Yes, this woman who last month was badly beaten allegedly on account of her sexuality is now beating herself up in the national press over her privileged identity. She says she has ‘evaded much of the violence and oppression imposed on so many others by our capitalist, white-supremacist, patriarchal system because of the privileges I enjoy by dint of my race, health, education, and conventional gender presentation’. What a strange, self-hating mindset it must take to be victimised for your sexuality and then to say: ‘God, I’m SO privileged.’ Chris even does us the service of providing a list of people who are far less privileged than her and who us phoney empathisers should finally start noticing. It is ‘open season’, she says, on ‘people of colour, indigenous people, transgender people, disabled people, queer people, poor people, women and migrants’. This is classic virtue-signalling. She is engaging in the Oppression Olympics while making it clear she doesn’t deserve any gold medals in said Olympics because she is white, educated, cisgender, etc. A masterclass in identitarian showboating. Ironically, while bemoaning her privilege, Chris and her partner have exercised the key privilege of our age – victim privilege. Witness how the liberal media have fallen over themselves to solicit the women’s opinions on political matters. They think Boris is unfit to be PM, one headline tells us. Commentators claim the attack on them shows how ugly Brexit Britain has become. What this isolated assault has got to do with Brexit is anyone’s guess, not least since the alleged perpetrators are teenagers who are not even old enough to vote and probably couldn’t care less about politics. Why are these women’s political opinions being sought out, anyway? We don’t ask victims of armed robbery or knife crime what they think of Boris Johnson getting into Downing Street, so why ask victims of a physical assault on a bus? It’s because they enjoy identitarian privilege; they are on the oppression scale and thus their views matter more than other people’s. This whole affair confirms how ugly and divisive the politics of identity has become. This nasty new politics makes solidarity impossible... ‘Is it cos I is white?’. No, it’s because you are a human being, and while sections of the virtual left might have disappeared up the fundament of the anti-human, anti-solidarity politics of identity, the rest of us have not. In that photo, we saw two human beings unfairly abused and assaulted. Nothing more, nothing less. Stop imputing malice and prejudice into our humanist urge to empathise with other people."
Identity politics poisons everything
On the Geymonat/Chris case

London Calling: An American SJW Lays Down the Law - "Her inquiry begs two questions.  The first deals with her definition of “homophobia,” which, if her op-ed is any reflection thereof, probably includes any opinion that doesn’t exactly coincide with her own.  Is the hate-driven beating of two lesbian women an act of homophobia?  Absolutely.  Is the polite refusal of a soft-spoken baker to take part in a ceremony which runs counter to his sincere religious beliefs an act of homophobia?  Absolutely not, no more than would his refusal to service a bigamist marriage be evidence of hatred and fear against Mormons. Second, the news is saturated daily with acts of injustice which, taken individually, outrage almost all of us.  But each one of us needs to process and prioritize these outrages, and we can only do so for so long.  Anyone perpetually outraged by every outrage finds little room for genuine happiness. (does Michael Eric Dyson seem happy to you?)  And of the outrages over which we do empathize, we nonetheless need to rank them.  We can’t be equally outraged at every outrage. There are desperate Venezuelan parents digging through garbage bins to feed their children.  People in China and North Korea are languishing in gulags.  Churches and synagogues are being bombed.  Women in the Islamic world are blinded and disfigured in acid attacks because they dared show their face in public.  There is still chattel slavery in parts of North Africa and the Middle East, and the global sex slave trade shows no signs of abating.  Chris must surely understand that, if by nothing other than virtue of severity, some outrages light up the midway high striker more than others. Even if one were to scrutinize only crimes against gays, the specter of state executions by stoning take precedent on the outrage spectrum over the anomalous beating of a gay couple. In the white ciheteropatriarchal capitalist hell of London, such an attack is truly outrageous. In Hyderabad, such an attack is getting off lucky.And if one were to scrutinize only crimes against women, a three-hour road trip from Chris’s London residence brings you to Rotherham... In her op-ed, Chris thrice refers to both herself and Melania as “white,” alleging that, “The press coverage, and timely law enforcement response, was not coincidental to our complexions.”  So Melania is “white,” huh?  I bet on the college applications she isn’t.  Why is Chris trying to pass off Melania, a clearly darker-skinned Latina, as “white”?  She is either prepping her for a senate run as Elizabeth Warren’s alter ego, or she is twisting herself another pretzel to feed a dogmatic ideological worldview.  In Chris’s narrative, the “capitalist, white supremacist, patriarchal system” only protects its own.  It makes no sense that it would serve a brown Uruguayan immigrant.   To the fanatic, it’s less uncomfortable to ignore reality than to open your mind.  Hence, Melania is now “white.” These are the circles Chris tries to square to insulate her biases.  Mind you, she offers precisely zero evidence to back her accusation that the police and media performed their duties through racialist partiality.  That’s due largely to her Guardian interviewers refusing to hold her to account (and its absence of a “Comments” section, which is telling).  But her willingness to exploit her own girlfriend as a racial prop for political expediency speaks more to her own zealotry than to any alleged racism of her cliched strawmen. This doesn’t mean the justice system is unbiased.  Most of the underage female victims of the aforementioned Rotherham rape rings were white.  The rapists were almost all Pakistani Muslim men.  There were certain, ah, “cultural” considerations factored into the decisions of officials to conceal the abuse.  The systemic rape of 1400 girls is apparently a small sacrifice to make before the Golden Calf of Diversity, especially when you’re not the one being gang raped... let’s discuss the five arrested perpetrators.  Chris refers to them as “idiots.”  Not homophobes.  Not misogynists.  Just “idiots”, for whom she explains she reserves no anger. (but you and I are hateful bigots, got it?)  Because of the authorities’ inexplicable refusal to release any details about them, we can only speculate.  The one clue we have to their identity, other than their age, is that Melania claimed that three of the attackers had British accents.  Normally, this wouldn’t be much of a clue.  The attack occurred in Britain, so why wouldn’t they have British accents?  Unless, of course, their British accents were an extricating factor... One would think a socialist rag like the Guardian would have an acute interest in exposing both the perpetrators and the motives behind such hate crimes, especially if they fit Chris’s theory with regards to their supposed systemic foundations.  One of the attackers is a legal adult, so there is no legal reason his identity cannot be publicized.  One wonders if there aren’t other reasons.  Political reasons.  Maybe the attackers’ identities don’t fit a certain narrative"
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