When you can't live without bananas

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Saturday, May 07, 2022

Links - 7th May 2022 (2 - Justin Trudeau)

Geoff Russ: Liberals melt over Rolling Thunder protest, but ignore left-wing vandals in Montreal - "Comparing the weekend’s overblown coverage of Ottawa’s Rolling Thunder protest to the concurrent violent May Day protests in Montreal, exposes the blatant double-standards of how Canada’s governing politicians confront political violence... Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued stern statements about possible hate crimes and violence before they arrived, while his cabinet ministers forecasted a possible repeat of the Freedom Convoy. Unfortunately for them, almost nothing politically beneficial, ie. a violent protest that they could use as a wedge, actually happened during the rather tame weekend in the capital...   Unlike the Freedom Convoy, Rolling Thunder left little trace of their presence in the capital after the weekend protest concluded. A few people were arrested in tussles with police, and residents of the city’s Centretown neighbourhood once again probably got less sleep than usual for the second time in four months. Nobody’s place of worship was vandalized, except a church popular with the bikers. Nonetheless, Rolling Thunder got the lion’s share of media coverage, and commentary by federal politicians this weekend. Few people are probably aware that a more political, and more dangerous event occurred in Montreal over the same weekend. So-called “anti-capitalists,” hiding behind masks, marched through the streets of the country’s second-largest city last Saturday, and were filmed terrorizing people they thought were getting in their way. Near the Place du Canada, the mob marched through the streets and began smashing windows, and spray painting parked cars. At least one person filming them had their camera knocked out of their hands.  It was not gravely acknowledged by the prime minister, or really any politician of note.   During last year’s May Day protests, an elderly couple with the misfortune to be driving on wrong street at the wrong time, became surrounded by a hostile mob. One member of the crowd began smashing the front of the couple’s car with his foot, while several others banged their hands on the side of it. In a video of the incident, the driver, a presumably terrified grey-haired lady, appears to open the car door to try and exit her vehicle. The door was pushed back in her face, forcing her back inside the car, while more rioters damaged it with kicks and other blows.  May Day riots have been allowed to become an annual tradition in Montreal. The destruction is normalized, and at this point, federal politicians have nothing to gain from condemning it. For lawmakers who treat political violence, or the illusion of it, as a political opportunity, attacks on elderly couples are irrelevant if they cannot curry political capital off of it. Last summer, Canada suffered what was probably the biggest wave of religious hate-crimes in living memory. Scores of churches were burned, damaged, or vandalized across the country. This was done in the name of Indigenous justice, even as Indigenous leaders swiftly told those committing the hate-crimes to stop their activities immediately.  The motivation for the arson was either labelled “understandable” by the prime minister, or, not mentioned at all. NDP leader Jagmeet Singh said the worst thing about burning the churches was how it could lead to forest fires, and avoided condemning it on political, or moral, grounds. Nonetheless, doubtful, and ultimately misreported, stories that truckers tried burning down apartments in Ottawa was enough for Jagmeet Singh to decide to support Trudeau’s invoking of the Emergencies Act...   As far as excuses for invoking the Emergencies Act’s go, the crown jewel was stating the truckers were going to overthrow the government. It was a theory that would not have stuck if the US Capitol wasn’t stormed on January 6 last year, leaving a segment of the Canadian population paranoid about a Canadian copy of it. The closest an overthrow came to actually happening was far-right Ontario MPP, Randy Hillier knocking over a loose fence on Parliament Hill."

Keean Bexte on Twitter - "To journalists across the country and around the world: Thank you for your relentless pursuit of the truth, and for your commitment to sharing those truths. Today, we celebrate your work – and we pay tribute to your colleagues who have been injured or lost their lives on the job."
"You literally had me arrested for trying to cover a press conference of yours."

Sabrina Maddeaux: How Trudeau drove away younger voters no longer seduced by empty celebrity - "Liberals erred on the public mood because they failed to predict the top issue among voters. They were certain it’d be the pandemic; that the effusive high of an open summer and vaccines for all who want them would inspire a red wave across the nation. That they’d be richly rewarded for their role in getting Canadians through the crisis. However, in their rush to pat themselves on the back, the Liberals completely missed another crisis gripping the nation. The affordability crisis, which includes the cost of living and housing, had become so dire even a deadly pandemic couldn’t overshadow it. Not only did it become the top issue among the general voting population, it became particularly important for those under 40, who also happen to be Trudeau’s formerly most reliable base. Among millennials, there’s a striking 25-point gap between their top voting issue, which is cost of living, and their second most important issue, which is climate change and the environment. In the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), 45 per cent of those 18 to 34 years old cite the cost of housing as their top issue. While the last two elections saw young Canadians start grassroots campaigns focused on the environment and social justice, this year saw them form groups like Canada Housing Crisis... To add insult to financial injury, while the Liberals didn’t bother to release their housing platform until weeks into the campaign, they kicked off the election by mailing $500 cheques to seniors, regardless of the recipients’ means. The glaring contradiction made it clear which generation the party prioritized and which they took for granted"

Diane Francis: Canada no longer deserves a seat at the big boys' table - "Due to mediocre growth, high taxation, low productivity and over-regulation, Canada hasn’t made the cut for a while, but stays in the G7. Both Italy and Canada are smaller, in terms of nominal gross domestic product, than China and India. Canada is the world’s ninth-largest economy, according to International Monetary Fund estimates, but — at current growth rates — could be overtaken in a couple of years by South Korea, Russia and Australia. Of course, size isn’t everything, it’s also the quality of international participation that counts, which brings me to Trudeau’s pathetic defence spending lapses. According to NATO statistics, Canada continues to ignore the NATO goal of spending the equivalent of two per cent of GDP on defence... The problem is that Canada is flagging because Trudeau and his cabinet of amateurs aren’t big-league players and are principally concerned with dividing the pie into politically correct pieces rather than growing it by nurturing enterprise and initiative.   As a result, Canada loses international clout, albeit retaining a nice reputation as a peaceful social democracy sheltered by the U.S. economy and military. That’s not all bad, but it is naive. It’s a nasty world out there and Canada’s weaknesses have been, and are, handily exploited by China, among others.   Money and military might count around the G7, G20 and NATO tables, and it’s a shame that Canadians have lost their once-strong voice. Trudeau blew millions of taxpayer dollars lobbying for votes to get a useless Security Council seat at the United Nations, only to come in third. Meanwhile, China kicks sand in our faces. It cancels trade contracts, bullies Chinese-Canadian citizens on our soil and holds two innocent Canadians hostage to spring a Chinese heiress charged with fraud in the U.S.  Worse, Canada’s reputation among the countries that belong to the all-important Five Eyes intelligence network (U.S., U.K., Australia, New Zealand and Canada) has been horribly tarnished since the head of the National Intelligence Coordination Centre was jailed on suspicions involving collaboration with China. Canada is not run by grown-ups, but by a cabinet that has zero expertise in business, economics or much of anything else except spending and taxing. The result is falling standards of living due to productivity drops.  Looking at comparative statistics on GDP per hour worked tells the story. The U.S. is third, Germany is seventh, Australia is ninth … Canada is 14th, behind the rest of western Europe."

Majority of Canadians say Trudeau should resign following election, believe country more divided than ever: poll - "77 per cent of respondents said Canada feels more fractured than ever following a summer campaign that produced roughly the same seat count as the last parliamentary session. Just 23 per cent of respondents said the country is now more unified under Trudeau. A slim majority of respondents (52 per cent) said Canada’s democratic system is broken and “needs a major overhaul.” The results come at a time when divides over regional interests and government-led responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have remained a central issue in Canadian politics. In his acceptance speech earlier this week Trudeau sought to downplay the divisions within Canada, saying “that’s not what I see.”  But that contention appears to run counter to what recent polling suggests, said John Wright, executive vice-president at Maru Public Opinion, and glosses over some of the deeper feelings of resentments, particularly in oil-dependent provinces like Alberta and Saskatchewan... 55 per cent of respondents said Trudeau should step down and allow a new leader to take the helm, compared with 45 per cent who believed he should stay. That was the highest proportion calling on a leader to resign, along with Green Party leader Annamie Paul, for whom 55 per cent of respondents also said she should step down."

Cursed by catastrophically low approval ratings, Joe Biden is still more popular than Trudeau - "Biden is still more popular than Justin Trudeau, a prime minister only three months out from his last election win.  The latest numbers from Gallup have Biden’s approval rating at 40 per cent — one of the lowest ever for a U.S. president at the end of his first year in office.  Meanwhile, Trudeau’s latest approval rating stands at 38 per cent, according to the Angus Reid Institute. That’s actually a couple points higher than the 36 per cent approval that Trudeau was enjoying in the days after his victory in the Sept. 20 federal election (and seven points higher than his career low of 31 posted in August 2019)... And it’s not just the prime minister. Across the board, Canadian premiers are also experiencing rock-bottom popularity compared to U.S. governors.  The latest Angus Reid Institute numbers on premiers saw five out of nine polling below 50 per cent...   A big reason for the disparity is the United States’ general adherence to a two-party system, which usually means that — at any one time — at least half of voters are being governed by their chosen candidate...   Since the Second World War, in fact, only two prime ministers have won a federal election while also claiming at least half the popular vote: Brian Mulroney in 1980 and John Diefenbaker in 1958.  Kurl also notes that Americans are generally more extreme in their views — including their likes and dislikes of political leaders...   But while Canadians may hate the individual politicians who run their governments, the picture changes completely when it comes to those governments themselves.  On the eve of the last federal election in September, a poll by the Institute on Governance and Advanced Symbolics found that an incredible 65 per cent of Canadians retained trust in their government.  In the United States, by contrast, numbers from Pew Research Center find that the American people haven’t retained Canada-levels of trust in their government since the days before the Vietnam War. In Pew’s most recent survey in April, just 24 per cent of respondents said they trusted their federal government to do what is right."

Opinion: Justin Trudeau is taking after his father—and Canadians will pay the price - The Hub - "First, there’s the fiscal record. The two Trudeaus share a proclivity for deficit-financed spending... Pierre Trudeau’s expansion of existing programs and introduction of new programs, financed largely by debt, set the stage for the massive deficits and debt accumulation of the 1980s and early 1990s, which led to a near debt and currency crisis... The two Trudeaus also introduced policies that hurt the oil and gas sector and Western Canada more broadly. Trudeau the Elder created Petro-Canada as a Crown Corporation and introduced the National Energy Program, which created animosity and distrust of Ottawa, particularly in Alberta. Trudeau the Younger introduced a national carbon tax, a cap on greenhouse gas emissions that only applies to the oil and gas sector, a subjective review process for large infrastructure projects that observers agree basically prohibits energy-related projects (including pipelines), and banned bitumen exports from the west coast. Tensions with the West resulted in stark electoral setbacks for both Trudeaus... Interestingly for both Trudeaus, given their roots and connection with Quebec, both experienced a surge in Quebec nationalism... Finally, Pierre Trudeau was the only prime minister to invoke the War Measures Act during peacetime—specifically, in 1970 during what became known as the October Crisis, which involved political kidnappings and bombings by the Front de libération du Québec (FLQ). And Justin Trudeau is the only prime minister to use the Emergencies Act (which replaced the War Measures Act in 1988) in response to the protests last month. This move sparked widespread opposition, including from multiple premiers and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, with many experts concerned about the precedent this sets for future use of the Act."

Judge slaps down Trudeau government for denying summer jobs grants to Christian university - "In an unusually harsh judicial slapdown of the Trudeau government, a federal judge has ruled that an Ontario university was barred access to the Canada Summer Jobs Program for little reason other than the fact that it was a Christian institution. In a decision on Tuesday, Justice Richard Mosley ruled that the federal government had breached “procedural fairness” in its treatment of Redeemer University, a private Christian liberal arts university in Hamilton, Ont. – and had denied the school funding based solely on its religious opposition to same-sex marriage. In a rare move, Mosley also ordered the federal government to pay Redeemer’s full legal costs, which amounted to $102,000... In 2019, Redeemer University applied for $104,187 from the Canada Summer Jobs Program in order to subsidize 11 temporary positions at the school. At the time, Redeemer had been participating in the Canada Summer Jobs Program since 2006 without incident.  Within two months, the application was rejected on the grounds that Redeemer could not demonstrate “that measures have been implemented to provide a workplace free of harassment and discrimination.”   At the time of the application, Redeemer University required its students to avoid “sexual intimacies which occur outside of a heterosexual marriage” – a policy that also informed the selection of faculty and staff. Nevertheless, those strictures didn’t extend to the school’s 11 Canada Summer Jobs Program positions, which ranged from summer camp attendants to workers at an onsite water treatment plant. In its application Redeemer had even expressly pledged to target “LGBTQ2 youth” for hiring... Redeemer University hadn’t been rejected out of any red flags in its application, but because of a “cursory search of the Internet” to which Redeemer hadn’t been given the chance to respond.  “If the concern of (Service Canada) was that Redeemer discriminated based on sexual orientation, there was no contemporaneous evidence of that in the file”...   Justice Mosley added “there is no evidence … that (Service Canada) made any overt attempt to consider Redeemer’s rights to freedom of religion, freedom of expression or freedom of association in considering its application.”   Or, as Redeemer University lawyer Albertos Polizogopoulos summed up the government’s stance, “we don’t like your position on sexual morality and that’s why you’re denied.” In Polizogopoulos’ submissions to the court, he alleged that Redeemer had been subjected to a “background check” beyond the usual scope of the Canada Summer Jobs Program application proceed...   Interim president David Zietsma referenced a section of the Civil Marriage Act – the 2005 law which legalized same-sex marriage in Canada – which states that “no person or organization shall be deprived of any benefit” if they held official beliefs viewing marriage “as the union of a man and woman to the exclusion of all others.”   Said Zietsma, “we were concerned about the precedent this kind of discrimination would set for religious institutions.” The lawsuit intentionally did not seek payment of the $104,187 grant, but was pursued instead because of the “principles involved.” In 2018, the Canada Summer Jobs Program was subject to a wave of lawsuits after employment minister Patty Hajdu made funding conditional on organizations’ pledging their support for abortion.  The federal government ultimately backed off the abortion pledge, and by the time Redeemer University made its 2019 application, Service Canada was instead mandating a much more general policy of a “safe, inclusive, and healthy work environment free of harassment and discrimination.” Redeemer University applied again for the Canada Summer Jobs Program in both 2020 and 2021. Polizogopoulos said that Service Canada delayed the school’s 2020 application until the program was out of money"

Melissa Mbarki: Trudeau's virtue signalling to First Nations is meaningless - "It took the Liberal government six years to implement eight of the 94 Truth and Reconciliation Commission calls to action. Averaging one item per year, it will take 94 years before we see any kind of meaningful change in First Nations communities.  Seeing the prime minister kneeling at these gravesites was disrespectful in so many ways. I come from a strict traditional upbringing and we are not allowed to take pictures at our loved ones’ gravesites. Seeing these pictures circulated online and used for political purposes or sold as memorabilia made me furious.  We do not know how these children died, if they experienced horrific abuse or sickness, or if they died alone. When we pay our respects to those who have passed, we lay down some tobacco and say prayers for them. Laying a teddy bear and kneeling beside a deceased child while continuing to fight Indigenous children in court, as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government is doing, is infuriating. If our prime minister believed in reconciliation, we would have made more progress on Indigenous issues over the last six years. What we are now seeing are growing tensions and acts of violence that are benefiting no one in this country... Kneeling for us means nothing when many communities do not have basic services like water, housing or reliable internet."

Joe Oliver: Our bare-faced Teflon PM blunders merrily along - "the most profligate budget in Canadian history; the long-delayed delivery of COVID-19 vaccines (at one point we ranked 98th in the world for full vaccinations per capita); Bill C-10’s attempted erosion of freedom of speech; and the coverup of sexual harassment allegations against the former Chief of Defence Staff. For the opposition parties, they are gifts that keep giving. A full recounting would require a noir novel. In an unprecedented attack on parliamentary democracy, the prime minister has now lengthened his losing streak by suing the Speaker of the House of Commons. The suit demanded that Anthony Rota, the only independent-thinking Liberal MP left standing, conceal documents revealing why two scientists from China were dismissed by a top-security Winnipeg virology lab. Meanwhile, the RCMP are investigating whether materials that can create lethal viruses were surreptitiously transferred to China, including to the Wuhan lab, which many suspect produced the COVID-19 virus and inadvertently leaked it to the world. The scientists hightailed it back to the Middle Kingdom, with which we do not have an extradition treaty. You can’t make this stuff up... The prime minister took over five months to replace Governor General Julie Payette, whom he had not properly vetted. A statue of Queen Elizabeth was torn down without concern expressed about this affront to our Head of State. The prime minister tends to accord inadequate respect to our constitutional governance, although the choice of Mary Simon is symbolically commendable, except for her inability to speak French.   Mr. Trudeau refused to dismiss Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, Carolyn Bennett, who callously insulted Canada’s most prominent First Nations parliamentarian, Jody Wilson-Raybould, just after hundreds more children’s bodies were discovered buried in an unmarked gravesite adjacent to a residential school. Shamefully, 52 long-term drinking water advisories remain in 33 First Nations communities. The prime minister is better at virtue-signalling than actually delivering to Indigenous peoples. Mr. Trudeau labels Canada a systemically racist country, undercutting our international standing... Usually governments are not defeated; they defeat themselves. This government has gone to extraordinary lengths to do that, but to no avail."

LILLEY: Trudeau breaks a promise with massive carbon tax hike | Toronto Sun - "The Canadian economy has been battered and bruised over the last year as the country deals with the ravages of COVID-19... But have no fear, Justin Trudeau is coming to the rescue with just the thing to help, a giant increase in the carbon tax...   Funny thing though, this is exactly what the Liberals said they would not do ahead of the last election... McKenna said at the time that the government has, “no plan to increase the price post 2022. For Conservatives to suggest otherwise is simply false and misleading.”...   It all reminds me of another thing McKenna famously said.  “If you repeat it, if you say it louder, if that is your talking point, people will totally believe it,” McKenna famously boasted in a Twitter video. Well, enough voters believed it, but then again, the Liberals were aided and abetted by the media on this. Several so-called “fact checks” were done on the Conservative claim that the Liberals would raise the carbon tax to $102 a tonne after the election and each one said the Conservatives claims were false and misleading.  Turns out that the claims were false and misleading, not because the Liberals wouldn’t boost the tax but because they are boosting it to $170 a tonne rather than $102 a tonne.   Shortly after the election the Liberals changed their tune from saying they wouldn’t raise the price to claiming they wouldn’t raise the price yet. After being sworn in as Trudeau’s new environment minister, John Wilkinson said the government would consider it in 2022 and after checking with the provinces. They didn’t wait until 2022 and they didn’t check with the provinces, something made abundantly clear by Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s reaction to the announcement... The Trudeau government is promising to expand the carbon tax rebate program, but that has been shown not to return the full cost for the average family and won’t with the expansion.  For reasons that only Trudeau himself might understand, the federal government has decided that a period of economic recovery from a pandemic was the right time to boost taxes. This folks, is the reset Trudeau promised."

Is federal carbon pricing really revenue neutral? - The Globe and Mail - "Is federal carbon pricing really revenue neutral? - The Globe and Mail - "Ottawa says yes, since none of the funds go into general revenue. But the government is making decisions on how to spend that money, even though it is earmarked for a specific purpose. For the government’s assertion of revenue neutrality to hold, that spending has to be defined away as a transfer of revenue. It’s worth noting that British Columbia’s carbon tax, launched in 2008, was a much more straightforward example of revenue neutrality. The province reduced individual and corporate income taxes to offset, and then some, the amount of carbon revenue it raised (until it abandoned the goal of revenue neutrality, that is). Lastly, there is a significant hole in Ottawa’s assertion that federal carbon pricing is revenue neutral: the hundreds of millions of dollars that the government collects in GST on top of the carbon levy. Last year, the Parliamentary Budget Officer estimated that the resulting annual GST revenue will rise to $235-million this year. The federal government does not include that revenue in its calculation of revenue that it returns to households and businesses. If only for that reason, it’s not accurate – or at least not precise – for Ottawa to say that federal carbon pricing is revenue neutral... Fitch Ratings has a sobering analysis for anyone thinking that advanced economies can spend freely and grow their way out of their pandemic debt. In a report issued last week, the ratings agency throws a big splash of cold water on the theory that governments can count on a protracted period of low interest rates to gradually decrease the debt burden relative to the economy (a theory that Ottawa has signed on to). “History confirms that low interest rates relative to GDP growth is neither a necessary nor sufficient condition for reductions in government debt ratios,” the report states. Fitch looked at 29 instances since 1960 of developed economies reducing government debt ratios by more than 10 percentage points (two of those examples were Canadian). Interest rates were not consistently lower than economic growth through those 29 cases – but operating budget surpluses or very small deficits were the norm, Fitch notes. Fiscal discipline drove debt reduction. Or, as the saying goes, when you find yourself in a hole, the first thing you should do is stop digging. If history is a guide, debt reduction in the years ahead will require fiscal adjustments in addition to low interest rates."

MALCOLM: The erosion of democratic values in Canada | Toronto Sun - "Canadians hear a lot about the many threats towards freedom and democracy posed by U.S. President Donald Trump...   Trudeau shut down Parliament in the midst of his heavy-handed economic lockdowns, claiming it was unsafe for Parliamentarians to gather in the House of Commons. While hidden away from the scrutiny of opposition MPs, Trudeau unveiled the largest increase in spending in Canadian history.  He spent hundreds of billions of dollars in a matter of weeks, and did so without the usual Parliamentary oversight, transparency or accountability. Trudeau didn’t need Question Period, explained some members of the mainstream media, since he was taking daily questions from hand-selected journalists — the majority of whom have their salaries funded through money from the Trudeau government. One can imagine the accusations of authoritarian tactics if Trump by-passed congress to issue unilateral dictates while only allowing hand-picked, White House-funded journalists to ask him questions.  When the House of Commons finally resumed, the public learned about just one of those secretive spending schemes: a deal to give $912 million of spending to a charity to dole out that had given the Trudeau family half a million dollars in perks and speaking fees.  A Parliamentary committee began digging into this scandal, and quickly exposed the many falsehoods and contradictions in Trudeau’s explanation of events. Things were not looking good for Trudeau, so he turned to a relic of our system: he prorogued Parliament to shut down the investigations into his ethics violations.  Instead of being met with consternation, the media downplayed the misuse of his power and pretended it was just another normal tool in the Prime Minister’s toolkit... Rather than unveiling a bold vision for rebuilding the economy or providing a realistic strategy for living with the COVID-19 pandemic, Trudeau trotted out a hodgepodge of previous Liberal campaign promises: a national child care system, expanded EI, government-funded pharmacare and more green energy schemes.  Rather than uniting the country and allaying fears around the virus, we heard doom and gloom climate alarmism, hectoring about ill-defined systemic racism, threats to regulate media and the internet, nods to radical left-wing identitarian theories and very little about resuming life during the pandemic.  And, we heard next to nothing about an economic recovery, Canada’s struggling natural resource industry or any kind of plan to rein in spending or pay back the enormous national debt. Doing his best impression of Hugo Chavez, Trudeau demanded that TV stations give him a primetime slot to personally address the nation — something that has only been done in Canada during wartime or constitutional crises. Trudeau’s handlers assured the networks that Trudeau’s remarks were of “urgent national importance” and it was “not a political address.”  When Trudeau appeared on national television on Wednesday at dinnertime, he gave a political address, simply repeating the planks of his government’s Throne Speech and giving his Liberal pitch to Canadians.  This is another abuse of power."

SNOBELEN: Trudeau's Tofino trip was many things – but it wasn't out of character | Toronto Sun - "  Trudeau and his ilk believe that everything is gesture. Saying you are a feminist is just as, if not more, important than actually doing things that respect the power of women. Saying you are an environmentalist does not require you to turn out lights or turn down the thermostat (or avoid flying in a private jet to Tofino).  In other words, it’s what you say (or symbolize), not what you do."

Rex Murphy: Trudeau's Tofino romp exposed him as a hypocrite in the eyes of the public. How can he continue to govern? - "He lowered the flag of the Canadian nation indefinitely to mark his sensitivity to First Nations’ concerns. Our nation’s singular banner, under which wars have been fought and the country worked its long way through numerous crises, had to go half-mast because he wanted a gesture that would offer political appeal. But he would not cancel a surfboard holiday because that gesture would interfere with his weekend."

Letters to the editor: Oct. 8: ‘Nowhere in Justin Trudeau’s mea culpa is the word sorry uttered.’ Prime Minister apologizes for Tofino trip on National Day For Truth and Reconciliation, plus other letters to the editor - The Globe and Mail - "Nowhere in Justin Trudeau’s mea culpa is the word “sorry” uttered. Admitting a mistake, yes. A regret? Of course. Regretting what, exactly? Getting caught, it seems."
When you create a virtue signalling day but go on holiday instead...

Opinion: The Liberals say we can’t risk a Conservative government. So why call an election? - The Globe and Mail - "if Canada is at too critical a juncture to risk a backward slide on all matters of importance under a Conservative-led government – then why did Mr. Trudeau invite that risk with a discretionary election call that could lead to a Conservative-led government?"

KINSELLA: Damning CNN report scrapes off some of Trudeau's glitter | Toronto Sun - "Justin thumbed out a tweet to the host of the show, comedian Trevor Noah. Here’s what he said: “Hey @Trevornoah – thanks for everything you’re doing to celebrate Nelson Mandela’s legacy at the @GlblCtzn festival. Sorry I can’t be with you – but how about Canada pledges $50M to @EduCannotWait to support education for women & girls around the world? Work for you? Let’s do it.”  “Sorry I can’t be with you.” OMG! Isn’t that cool? Isn’t that dope? Just like that, our Justin offers $50 million — no pesky votes in the House of Commons, no oversight or review stuff or whatever! Just like it’s his own money! So sick.  Justin got in a lot of trouble for that little stunt, as you may recall. Conservative MP Michelle Rempel called Trudeau “tone deaf” — and noted that Trudeau seemed to be more preoccupied with getting noticed by a celebrity than, you know, acting like a prime minister."

John Ivison: Blue Liberals are seeing red over new Trudeau cabinet - "this is not a cabinet that inspires confidence that it will be able to ensure continued prosperity and national unity.  A number of Liberals reached out to express their concerns at the appointment of former activist Steven Guilbeault as the new environment minister and the removal of other more centrist voices like Marc Garneau and Jim Carr .  “This is Canada’s first NDP prime minister,” said one, noting the irony that when real New Democrats have been elected provincially, they have been forced to abandon their “eat the rich” dogma...   “The only pro-business thing Trudeau has ever done is legalize weed,” said one MP."

Matt Gurney: On gun control and other issues, Liberals are big on promises, but rarely deliver - "The soaring promises serve a political purpose — they earn votes for Trudeau. The actual hard work of implementation? The delivering on the things promised? That’s for suckers. It is abundantly clear that this prime minister and his government has concluded that actually delivering on promises is, in fact, for losers."

OPINION: Canadians will pay for Trudeau government’s record spending | Toronto Sun - "the Trudeau government was spending at historically high levels before the pandemic— with big consequences for Canadians... pre-pandemic, Prime Minister Trudeau’s government was one of only three in Canadian history to accumulate federal per-person debt outside of war or recession. By spending through borrowing, this government is effectively sticking future generations with the bill for today’s spending."

OPINION: Trudeau government broke the Debt Clock | Toronto Sun - "the Trudeau government has nearly doubled the federal debt since they came into power in 2015. Because Ottawa is spending taxpayers’ money as if it means nothing at all. And because we must return to prudent fiscal management before Prime Minister Trudeau’s deficits do further inflationary damage to our basic cost of living.  The spending is so bad right now that the debt wouldn’t fit on to the CTF’s old debt clock, which sadly only had room for 12 digits. At more than $1 trillion, we ran out of room and the Trudeau government broke our debt clock.  While spending on the COVID-19 mess has added to the problem, Trudeau’s spending bender was rocking long before March 2020.   In 2018, the feds spent more money than in any one year of the Second World War or the recessions. That’s adjusted for both inflation and population growth. Readers can recall that in 2018 there was no massive natural disaster pummelling our country, no alien invasion to fend off and no plague to fight. Back then it was a mostly normal year coupled with a roaring economy in the States.  When our key business partner is having a very good year, we should have been having a great one. The government should have been making hay while the sun shone, saving money for a rainy day.  Instead, they were digging the debt hole deeper as fast as they could for no good reason and then the COVID-19 wave hit the country. While a $1 trillion debt tab looks hopeless, all is not lost. Remember that when you are in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging.  Remember the 1990s? Former finance minister and prime minister Paul Martin took deficits and balanced budgets very seriously... Martin eventually balanced the federal budget, slayed the deficit and stopped the debt clock.  If we stop the spending madness now, hopefully the medicine won’t need to be as strong as it was back then. If we return to pre pandemic levels of spending, which were already all-time highs, the budget would be balanced within a few years."

Food history: everything you wanted to know

Food history: everything you wanted to know | History Extra

 "‘The kind of underlying idea is that Britain or the British person rich man in the street is represented by butcher. John Bull is a butcher, he eats meat, other nations can't afford to eat meat, therefore, straightaway, we're better than anyone else. Also, we eat meat, which means that we are big and strong and tall, and we can fight the French and the French, as everybody knows, live on soupe maigre, which is turnip soup and frogs’ legs because they're all poor, and they're all weedy. And every satire you see is a Frenchman, because mainly anti French propaganda, has a bandy legged Frenchman who’s sort of pigeonchested and sort of a bit effete  looking and put against the doughty Englishman who beats them up and then has breakfast. So it's, it's very easy to smile and laugh, but they're really I mean, are very dangerous caricatures apart from anything else, because it all feeds into the British sense of superiority, the British sense of isolationism, you know, these things were alive and well in the 18th century, but they still affect our mentality today. And the number of people who say that their favorite meal is a steak, and it may well be, but I also think it's because of this trope that's sitting in the back of our heads about what is British. It's a bloody steak. It's about beef husbandry and about masculinity. And about, you know, yeah, it's really unrefined, not like this frou frou French stuff. I mean, gah, who needs sauces anyway, and that is is absolutely the attitude of the 18th century. And it's also a lie because the aristocracy we're all eating frou frou French sauces anyway, because why wouldn't they but then they claim they're British and they put some beef on the sideboard anyway…

Fish and Chips makes their appearance as a thing together really in about the 1860s. So fry, the lovely thing about fish and chips is that fried fish were essentially, came out of Jewish culture in the East End, because you couldn't cook on the Sabbath. So fried fish would be served. And chips seem to have made their appearance in France in the late 18th century. So the British national dish is a mixture of Jewish emigre food and French food. And Italian food if you have ketchup, or French if you have mayonnaise, and, you know, it's brilliant. And so it appeared sort of around the 1860s. Manchester claims to have been the site of the first fish and chip shop, so does London, we'll never know. And it took off really quickly because fried fish and chips was really tasty, really nutritious and really cheap. So it very quickly became a working class food. And I suppose it was really kind of the Edwardian period or around the First World War that it became very much a British national food. And it was very much recognized as such. So to the point that in the Second World War, it wasn't rationed, because it was seen as so vital, not just to the health of the nation, but to the morale of the nation...

‘Is vegetarianism and veganism, are they modern phenomenons? Or do they have an older history?’

‘They have a much older history. Early vegetarians are called Pythagoreans. Because Pythagoras was supposed to be a vegetarian, verging very much on the vegan actually, for most of their history, certainly, vegetarianism, veganism is more modern, certainly in the way that we see it today. So veganism really is a post 1960s development. Vegetarianism is in the past very much tied up with religion, and also with protest. So for some people, especially those that were religious, and especially those in monasteries or nunneries, they would give up meat and animal products, because it was seen as something that holy people should do. In fact, if you were Catholic, if you are Catholic, today, you have meat free days. So the early church right across Europe, the early Catholic Church, Wednesdays, Fridays, Sundays, quite a lot of saints’ days, about half the year, were meat free days. So medieval cuisine is a really good place to start if you're vegetarian and looking for a way into history or the history of food. Because in the medieval period, we had what were known as fast days and they were meat free. So they were meat free in a kind of like fairly, there were gray areas, so seals and otters and things like that. And beavers’ tails, and certain seabirds were not meat, because they were in the sea. So that was fine. And you could pay a fine and get out of it. So it was all sort of a little bit kind of fudgy. 

But in theory, you had meat free days. So instead of milk, you would consume almond milk, there would be no butter, but you would use vegetable oils, all the things that you would see as tropes today. You know, almond milk really isn't new. And certain, a lot of those foods are really, really, really good, but you could eat fish, that's the crucial difference. So if you're a vegetarian who eats fish, all those medieval recipes are perfect for you. Porpoise, sturgeon, dolphin. Not all of it is great. And also things like jellies, you wouldn't set a jelly with gelatin derived from animals, you set it with isinglass, which is the swim bladder of sturgeon. So there are really good really very ingenious ways around eating meat. Fast forward to the 17th century and we have left the church in Rome and fast days are still kind of being kept by some people, but not very many at all. So but that point vegetarianism sort of as a movement, but not called vegetarianism yet, is very much part of society. But is seen as very cranky. 

This guy called Thomas Tryon who writes a lot of vegetarian books, and he's very much tied up with religion and about protest as well. In the 19th century, vegetarianism becomes associated with working class protest, because it is seen that if you give up meat, then you are stepping outside the norms of society. And it's a really good way to do it. But the late 19th century, it's associated with suffrage, because if you are a woman, and you decide you're not going to eat meat, again, you're stepping outside this kind of bloody masculine patriarchal society and early vegetarian restaurants very much associated with women. There, and that's also when the Vegetarian Society is founded. The modern movement, as in concerned about animal welfare has its roots in the 19th century. So up to that point, you're doing it because of healthcare, you're doing it because of belief. 

But the middle of the 19th century, people are saying, look, we don't treat animals well. You know, we cram our chickens, we, we whip animals to death, we are treating them so badly. A civilized society should not eat meat, and that's where you get the root of the modern vegetarian movement come from. So it does have a really long history. I think one of the really important things to remember though, is that the majority of people for the majority of the past were vegetarian because they didn't have choice. 

So when it comes to modern vegetarianism, and even more so modern veganism, you cannot have that movement until everybody can afford meat. Because there is no point in protesting if you're, if no one's gonna notice. And that's very much true of veganism, it's very much a movement that can really only exist in a wealthy Western society. Yes, there are exceptions. Of course there are, there are lots of exceptions of again, it's religious groups, mainly who are thinking, obviously, of Buddhism and things like that. But in terms of a mainstream movement, or anything, even approaching the mainstream, you can't do that until you can protest. So when you look at the 19th century, the idea that you would give up meat when most people could only afford a couple of pieces of bacon a week, if that, would be ludicrous’...

‘What about the emergence of fast food? Where do you see that trend beginning?’

‘At least the Roman period, where you've got people selling lamb chops out of trays to people on the street. If you've got humans, they're gonna want to eat fast. So really, I mean, street food, fast food goes back and enormously long way. And modern stuff, the kind of, you know, burgers and baps really is 1920s onwards, but in terms of a fast thing, I mean, you used to get baked potato, a man selling baked potato to people in queues for the theater, and apparently was a really good if you're a woman, and you are a bit chilly, you could put a baked potato inside your mouth and it would keep you really, really warm’...

‘Why do you think that Western culture developed knives and forks and Eastern cultures developed chopsticks?’

‘Well, they sort of come from the same root. So if you think of the fork and the chopsticks as the equivalent, then that's, it sort of makes more sense. So the earliest cultures, the earliest eating tools that have been found in archaeological sites and so on and so forth have been spoons, or proto spoons. Something to convey a sloppy mess from the slop to your mouth. Obviously, you can drink from a bowl, but sometimes you want something else. So spoons are the big one. And knives obviously existed for a long time, because how else are you going to butcher your woolly mammoth carcass, whatever it is... your proto deer carcass. But knives. So knives and spoons coexisted for ages in all cultures, pretty much. And then you start slowly to get kind of it, it branches outwards. So Asian culture develops chopsticks, because they're really useful. And there are two kind of main reasons that seem to be, I'm not an expert on Asian culture, I should point out and not on chopstick use either. 

But the main reasons that are usually quoted for the development of chopsticks are, first of all, that there were a couple of 100 years where food was very scarce. So cooking techniques changed, especially in China to be pre chopped up and pre proportioned, really. So when you got your dinner, it was lots of little pieces that needed to be conveyed to the mouth. And chopsticks, which were already being used to cook with, were very, very useful for doing that, because you could convey small amounts of food to your mouth and sort of elongate the meal. The other thing was that Confucius, who obviously was incredibly important in Chinese culture, said that knives at the table, were really not what you should be, it's not a mark of civilization to have a weapon that can kill you at the dining table...

In Western Europe, we were using the spoon and the knife, eating knives were pointy. We know that knives and spoons were being carried by people as well. So you had your own personal cutlery which you would carry with you. One of the reasons we know it is because virtually every village in Britain claims to be the home of football. And the reason they claim it is because somebody died playing football by falling on their eating knife. Now, loads of villages claim to be the home of football based on this. And it's always the same story. But for me, the main take out is: why on earth are you carrying your knife with you and then playing a really violent game with it? I mean, surely you take it off, right? It just goes to show that, you know, people have been really silly throughout history. So we have knives and spoons for a very long time. And then we start to get the fork. And the fork originates as a thing to eat sticky sweet meats with at posh tables. So if you've got plums in brandy, they're quite difficult to eat with a spoon. And they're really difficult to eat with a knife, because you're gonna risk cutting your tongue off. So the fork developed really, it was a dessert thing just for the dessert table...

A lot of modern kitchen chefs are starting to use chopsticks to stir and to pick things up and turn things more than tongs because you can get a lot of control with chopsticks. And we used to have pudding sticks and things like that. So there's a lot of similarities’"


National identity and thinking you're better than another country is "dangerous"

The irony is that Britain and France last were really at war in 1815

Links - 7th May 2022 (1 - Abortion)

Pro-abortion groups target churches for Mother's Day protests - "The protests follow days of organizing in front of the Supreme Court building following the leak Monday night – protests that led the Washington, D.C., police to erect a fence ostensibly to protect the building and justices within. Fox News has also learned that there has been a strong police presence at the justices' homes following the leak... Pro-abortion vandals targeted a church in Boulder, Colorado, Wednesday, spray-painting "bans off our bodies" and "my body my choice" on the building."

White House encourages 'peaceful protests,' won't tell abortion activists to avoid SCOTUS justices' homes - "Peter Doocy on Thursday brought up Biden's statements earlier this week calling the "MAGA crowd" the "most extreme political organization" in recent history. "Do you think the progressive activists that are now planning protests outside some of the justices' houses are extreme?" Doocy asked Psaki. "Peaceful protest, no. Peaceful protest is not extreme," Psaki said. "We certainly encourage people to keep it peaceful and not resort to any level of violence."... Psaki again declined to state whether Biden supported any limits on abortion, even up until the moment of birth. An activist organization called "Ruth Sent Us" — a reference to former Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg — published the apparent home addresses of Justices Amy Coney Barrett, John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Brett Kavanaugh, Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch, and encouraged peaceful demonstrations."
Uh oh. After we saw what "mostly peaceful protests" were, this means riots are coming.
Ironic, given that RBG didn't like Roe v Wade

Meme - "2021: January 6th was an insurrection!
2022: Let's burn down the SCOTUS!"

Thread by @JCNSeverino on Thread Reader App – Thread Reader App - "The website notes that “stipends [are] available” for protestors. Who exactly is paying for these stipends? More pointedly, who is funding the threat against Supreme Court justices? The website links to a different organization, "Strike for Choice," which shows connections to groups including Black Lives Matter, Code Pink, Women's March SF, Kavanaugh Off Our Court, and Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights. How exactly are these groups connected?... How many of these other groups have engaged in violence before?... The parallels between this planned protest and the disgusting antics we saw from left-wing dark money groups during the Kavanaugh confirmation are striking. Will groups like @WeDemandJustice condemn these protests? So far they have been silent. What about Demand Justice board member @ElieNYC? Or is “Ruth Sent Us” also connected with the Arabella Advisors dark money network?"

Thread by @asymmetricinfo on Thread Reader App – Thread Reader App - "I think the people catastrophizing about contraception or interracial marriage being next after Roe sincerely believe it. But I'm sorry, I cannot take this seriously. Even if Griswold v. Connecticut were overturned, making it once again legal to ban contraception, that throws it back to the states, and where is the political constituency for state legislatures passing a ban? The Catholic Church is the only sizable faith community in this country that proscribes contraception, but regardless of Church teaching, a substantial majority of Catholic couples use birth control, and are not going to vote to take it away from themselves. The net effect of overturning Griswold is that contraception will continue to be legal in all 50 states. In a few states, it might become harder to get certain IUDs and the morning after pill, but even that is dubious. Similarly, it is not 1950. In Georgia, 13-14% of Atlanta and Augusta couples are now interracial! Even in the Deep South, outlawing interracial marriage would be a lift. But also, is Clarence Thomas going to vote to let states outlaw his marriage? Actually, Clarence Thomas, I dunno, maybe. He's a rabid ideologue, and I man that as a compliment. But Brett Kavanaugh and ACB are not your votes for re-legalizing bans on interracial marriage. (But that's what the logic of the Alito draft implies, you say? Let me introduce you to "motivated reasoning"--something anyone who has read Roe and Planned Parenthood v. Casey will already be familiar with. If SC wants to find a way to distinguish it, they will. And they will.)"

Leftist Asks If Someone Should Kill Conservative SCOTUS Justices Over Roe v. Wade - "Framing his tweet as an interesting thought experiment, a leftist verified Twitter user, complete with a Ukrainian flag in his handle, questioned whether a terminally ill person, or someone with nothing left to lose should risk it all to “save many women’s lives in the future.” "Interesting real life trolley problem in America now,” tweeted Simon Gwynn Wednesday. “If you had the chance to kill Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito, the two oldest right wing Supreme Court judges, should you do it while Biden can get his nominees to replace them confirmed?”... Gwynn went on to detail the type of person he envisions carrying out the homicides. “It’s interesting as an abstract question but becomes a real conundrum if, say, you’re terminally ill and have little to lose yourself, but know that it could save many women’s lives in the future.”"

Meme - "Google: "can men get pregnant?"
"Is it possible? Yes, it's possible for men to become pregnant and give birth to children of their own."
""Okay, now change the answer to support the "Current Thing"
Google: "can men get pregnant?"
"People who are born male and living as men cannot get pregnant."

Chelsea E. Manning on Twitter - "for those of you who are just catching up: if you are able to afford it, and if it is safe for you to do so, you should consider arming yourselves, then finding others to train with in teams and learn how to defend your community—we may need these skills in the very near future"
Insurrections are only bad if the right supposedly does them

"If men could get pregnant, this wouldn't even be a conversation": Gavin Newsom displays startling transphobia in angry speech about aborting kids

Meme - "I can't believe that Roe v Wade might be overturned! This is an attack against women! "
"Hello, Peter. I'm Justice Clarence Thomas. Did you know that *all* laws restrict what you can and can't do with your body?"
"That's right, sir! Also, it can't possibly be an attack on women since men can get pregnant now, apparently."

Meme - Ann Lesby, PhD: "Devastated. Best friend just called in tears because her boyfriend supports SCOTUS decision. She said "men don't understand because men can't get pregnant!" Blocked her and called her employer. I am shaking. I cannot be believe she is a transphobe. #RoeVWade #MenHavePeriods"

Meme - "National Women's Law Center: In case you didn't hear it right the first time:
People of all genders need abortions.
People of all genders need abortions.
People of all genders need abortions.
People of all genders need abortions.
People of all genders need abortions.
People of all genders need abortions."
Liberals keep chanting slogans because they are incapable of forming real arguments, so they try to intimidate others into silence

Ben Shapiro on Twitter - "I am amazed by the Left's fantastical pretzel argument in which democracy is threatened by the Supreme Court returning the abortion issue to, you know, the voters.
SCOTUS, 1973: Voters can no longer speak on the issue of abortion. We, your robed rulers, have spoken.
SCOTUS, 2022: Voters can once again speak on the issue of abortion. We never had the authority to seize control of this issue.
Leftists: They're threatening democracy!"
All the liberals unironically talking about fundamental rights not being up for debate don't realise the irony of their position

Meme - Katie Hill @KatieHill4CA: "Hard to believe that girls being born today will have fewer rights than those born fifty years ago."
Ghost of Ghost of Kiev @SimonTemplarPY: "Born, you say?"

Meme - "We're just practicing our religion, bro." *Aztec human sacrifice*
On the claim that an abortion ban would be anti-Semitic

Actress Amanda Duarte: How Would White Supremacist Lawmakers Feel if Their Daughters Were Raped, Impregnated by Black Men - "Actress Amanda Duarte reacted to the potential overruling of Roe v. Wade, tweeting, “I do wonder how these white supremacist lawmakers would feel if their little white daughters were raped and impregnated by black men.”
Meme - Amanda Duarte @duarteamanda: "I almost want to get pregnant with Trump's baby and let it get to full term just so I can rip it halfway out and cut its fucking head off" - 2016

Women on TikTok say hookup culture will 'be absolutely decimated' if Roe V. Wade is overturned
They don't realise that to anti-abortion people, this is a good thing

Eric Conn on Twitter - "“Men don’t get a say on abortion.” And just like that, we’re all binary again."

Forsale on Twitter - "Here’s the thing, guys.It doesn’t matter.It doesn’t matter when life begins.It doesn’t matter whether a fetus is a human being or not.That entire argument is a red herring, a distraction, a subjective and unwinnable argument that could not matter less.It doesn’t matter whether we’re talking about a fertilized egg, or a fetus, or a baby, or a five year old, or a Nobel Prize winning paediatric oncologist.NOBODY has the right to use your body, against your will, even to save their life, or the life of another person.That’s it.That’s the argument.You cannot be forced to donate blood, or marrow, or organs, even though thousands die every year, on waiting lists.They cannot even harvest your organs after your death without your explicit, written, pre-mortem permission.Denying women the right to abortion means we have less bodily autonomy than a corpse."
"NOBODY has the right to use your body against your will, even to save their life or someone else’s. That’s it. That’s the argument."
Damn plague rat anti-vaxxer!
One person's stance was "NOBODY has the right to use your body, against your will, to save the life of one person. But society certainly has the right to use multiple bodies, against their wills, to save the life of [insert number that is conveniently above what one woman can birth at once] people". Certainly, one could make that case. But the covid vaccines don't reduce transmission. So one is left appealing to healthcare system overload. But that has disturbing implications for smokers, alcoholics and the obese. Plus it's not clear how the maths checks out. How many people's bodily autonomy must you violate with forced vaccination to save one life from avoiding healthcare system overload? With abortion, again the calculus is much starker

AP-NORC poll: Most say restrict abortion after 1st trimester (2021)
Only 8% say that abortion should be legal in all cases in the last trimester. So the liberal position is actually very unpopular

Dr. Ergun Caner on Twitter - "FACT CHECK— If #Abortion is Healthcare, then Kidnapping is Daycare."
Euthanasia will be "healthcare" soon

Important Reminder: Chuck Schumer Literally Threatened Supreme Court Justices Should They Overturn Roe - "So when we see violence, when we see politicians on the Left trying to upend the Supreme Court, it isn't a shock. They are simply keeping their word."

Why Ruth Bader Ginsburg Wasn’t All That Fond of Roe v. Wade - The New York Times - "She didn’t like how it was structured. The ruling, she noted in a lecture at New York University in 1992, tried to do too much, too fast — it essentially made every abortion restriction in the country at the time illegal in one fell swoop — leaving it open to fierce attacks.  “Doctrinal limbs too swiftly shaped,” she said, “may prove unstable.”  It was because of her early criticism of one of the most consequential rulings for American women that some feminist activists were initially suspicious of her when President Bill Clinton nominated her for the Supreme Court in 1993, worried that she wouldn’t protect the decision... The way Justice Ginsburg saw it, Roe v. Wade was focused on the wrong argument — that restricting access to abortion violated a woman’s privacy. What she hoped for instead was a protection of the right to abortion on the basis that restricting it impeded gender equality"
When will she become a misogynist who wanted to control women's bodies?

RBG Helped Make the Case for Overturning Roe v. Wade - "Roe v. Wade was “egregiously wrong from the start.” “Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences,” he continues. “And far from bringing about a national settlement of the abortion issue, Roe and Casey have enflamed debate and deepened division. It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.” Liberals were immediately outraged, but Alito not only makes a clear, logical case for overturning Roe, but he also did so with the help of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. “In the years prior to [Roe v. Wade], about a third of the States had liberalized their laws, but Roe abruptly ended that political process,” Alito explains. “It imposed the same highly restrictive regime on the entire Nation, and it effectively struck down the abortion laws of every single State. … [I]t represented the ‘exercise of raw judicial power’… and it sparked a national controversy that has embittered our political culture for a half-century.” This sounded a lot like something that Justice Ginsburg said in 1992, in a lecture published in the New York University Law Review, in which Ginsburg lamented that Roe v. Wade “halted a political process that was moving in a reform direction and thereby, I believe, prolonged divisiveness and deferred stable settlement of the issue.” And Alito quoted that very passage in his opinion.  Ginsburg also argued that the Court went too far by not simply striking down the Texas law challenged in Roe v. Wade. “A less encompassing Roe, one that merely struck down the extreme Texas law and went no further on that day, I believe and will summarize why, might have served to reduce rather than to fuel controversy,” Ginsburg said. Ginsburg has been quoted in the past about her reservations over the legal basis upon which Roe was decided. Ginsburg argued in 2013 that Roe “stopped the momentum that was on the side of change” in favor of abortion rights and instead inspired a state-by-state mission to restrict abortion rights. Alito similarly noted that Roe v. Wade didn’t end the abortion debate in the United States.  “Neither decision has ended debate of the issue of a constitutional right to obtain an abortion,” Alito’s opinion reads. “Indeed, in this case, 26 States expressly ask us to overrule Roe and Casey and to return the issue of abortion to the people and their elected representatives.” He added, “This Court cannot bring about the permanent resolution of a rancorous national controversy simply by dictating a settlement and telling the people to move on.”"

Thread by @asymmetricinfo on Thread Reader App – Thread Reader App - "Looking at abortion opinion, it's actually quite striking how little men and women differ on this question. The whole pro-life is about men telling women what to do with their bodies" schtick simply isn't grounded in reality.
Women are somewhat more likely to say abortion should be legal under all circumstances, but that's a minority view among women as well as men. The percentage of men and who say it should be illegal in all circumstances is fluctuates right around 20%, male or female. Men are more likely to self-id as pro-life, and women as pro-choice, but when you drill down into specifics, it's clear this stems from differences in labeling quite similar views.
 In 2012, 71.5% of men and 69.4% of women said abortion should be legal if there is a strong possibility of a serious fetal defect.  43.1% of men, and 43.3% of women, say it should be legal for married women who don't want more children. If a woman's life is endangered by the pregnancy? 83.5% of men, and 82.6% of women, say abortion should be legal. (And at least a quarter of the remaining 17% is probably accounted for by the Lizardman Constant)
 What about if a woman is low income and can't afford a child?  40.4% of men, and 40.9% of women, say abortion should be legal under those circumstances; 54.9% and 55.3%, respectively, say it should be illegal. If the pregnancy is a result of rape, 71.1% of men, and 72.8% of women, say abortion should be legal. 23% of both men and women say it should be illegal in those circumstances.
 Only 39% of both men and women said abortion should be legally allowed in cases where the woman is unmarried; 52.6% of men, and 56.8% of women, said illegal. Some 40% of men, and 43.2% of women, said abortion should be legal for any reason; 57.9% of men, and 54.2% of women, said it should be illegal.  It's the only question in which there is a gap between men and women that might exceed measurement error. But most women still opposed
 Basically, large majorities think abortion should be legal for "rape, incest, and life of the mother" type exceptions, plus severe fetal defects. Only a minority of Americans think abortions should be obtainable in order to avoid the major life disruption of a healthy pregnancy This is important because this--the life disruption of the pregnancy--is what the upper middle class women who provide the energy and the donations behind pro-choice activism & writing mostly think and talk about. They look at polls showing the majority of the public is pro-choice, or at least doesn't want Roe overturned, and conclude that if Roe is overturned, all those people will rise up and revolt against the GOP with the fervor they themselves will bring to the cause. But most of the public doesn't really understand what Roe said,. Even if they did, the last 10-15% of your majority coalition on abortion only wants them for severe birth defects, ultra high risk pregnancies plus rape/incest. Which is also fine with much of the pro-life coalition
Thus I'm skeptical about dark prophecies of a legitimacy crisis for the Supreme Court should it overturn Roe--or the coming electoral bloodbath for the GOP.  Most people don't care about abortion as much as pro-choice Twitter. Many of those who do are on the other side."

David Hogg deletes series of problematic tweets and apologizes for letting his ‘cis man’ privilege get the best of him - "I just took down all the tweets I just posted. Thank you to my friends who called me in. As a cis man it is not my place to speak right now and I let my anger get the best of me. I am sorry.
Out of respect for said friends and all people impacted by this decision I will be offline for a bit to not take up any more space on your timeline. Goodnight."
Pity, looks like he was only off twitter for 12 minutes: https://twitter.com/davidhogg111/status/1521320546847186944 vs https://twitter.com/davidhogg111/status/1521324891395354624

Meme - David Hogg: "Our country is run by a couple hundred billionaires. I guarantee you if a just a couple dozen picked up the phone over the next 24 hours and called up the party bosses of every state GOP and said they're pulling funding and funding their opposition things would change quick.
Should billionaires exist? No. But they do and they will probably for the rest of our lives. In the meantime we'd be fools to act like they don't have power we can and should use. The right has been doing that for years as has the left (just way less effectively)"
Meme - @davidhogg111: "If you're playing a game where the ref says you can legally trip and fist fight the other team you don't just sit on the sidelines and wait for the ref to change. You beat the shit out of the other team, win the game, change the rules and find a new ref.
It can't cost more than like $10 billion at most to legally buy off these republican state legislatures and moderate Dems though donations. Let's get real that's all they care about. They're just going to keep making it harder and harder to vote. All they care about is the $"

Meme - "Misoprostol is relatively easy to acquire from veterinary sources, since in addition to medically inducing abortions, it's also used to treat ulcers in horses."
horse dewormer *No*
horse ulcer meds *Yes*"
Military Style Assault Smirk - Posts | Facebook - "Vice can literally put out an article about how to make DIY abortion pills, but if I tell people to take vitamin D so they don't get The Coff I'm a fucking monster. Our fucking culture is so rotten smh."

Meme - "Hmm, today I will use victims of rape and incest to support my argument for abortion so that can keep on having unprotected sex with strangers consequence free"

Meme - "*condoms*
Woman: "They're not 100% effective so why bother?"
*masks* Woman: *Excited*"

Meme - Celena Spears @CelenaMSpears: "If #RoeVWade disappears, how much longer will it be before I'm seen as 3/5ths of a person again?"
Ms.Carasco, M.S. @mscarasc...: "Welp. I'm about to move back to my country of origin."
Steamfitter398 @steamfitter3...: "Take 6 of your closest friends with you."
They mock the slippery slope but keep invoking it themselves

Meme - "r/twoxchromosomes
Just canceled a first date this week because I can't emotionally handle more men in my life after all this
After the SCOTUS news, the idea of having to laugh at some dude's jokes and listen to him ramble on about his life, and possibly sex with him, knowing he has all the rights in the world and I don don't... just can't. I don't have the emotional energy to even fake a smile. I don't know when I will."
Is this subreddit transphobic since it's "intended for women's perspectives"?

Dave Smith on Twitter - "Progressives have given away their two favorite go to responses on abortion. “My body my choice” rings pretty hollow after Vax mandates. “It’s a women’s issue” is tough if there’s no definition of woman."

Chief Justice Roberts confirms authenticity of leaked draft opinion - "Chief Justice John Roberts says the Supreme Court will investigate the release of a draft opinion that would strike down Roe v. Wade and called the episode "a singular and egregious breach" of trust.  "This was a singular and egregious breach of that trust that is an affront to the Court and the community of public servants who work here. I have directed the Marshal of the Court to launch an investigation into the source of the leak"... "To the extent this betrayal of the confidences of the Court was intended to undermine the integrity of our operations, it will not succeed""

Ian Millhiser on Twitter - "Seriously, shout out to whoever the hero was within the Supreme Court who said “fuck it! Let’s burn this place down.”"
Clint Ehrlich on Twitter - "The mask is dropping. They're clapping as the institutions are destroyed. Remember this the next time you're lectured about "norms" and "civility.""
And once again, political violence became a good thing, since it helps the left again

Best Selling Biologist Matt Walsh on Twitter - "Leaking a SCOTUS decision is unprecedented. Obviously done by a liberal Justice to pressure one of the conservatives to change their mind. The Left will stop at nothing to protect their right to murder the innocent. This is just the beginning. It’s going to get very very ugly."
Judicial independence is only good when it helps liberals

Meme - James O'Keefe: "For a year a cowardly federal prosecutor in New York named Robert Sobelman secretly stole my emails, spied on my media company, and appears to have lied to federal judges to obtain secret covert spying orders. He then appears to have lied again to federal judges to get a search warrant to invade my home and seize my first amendment protected reporters notes and source information. Josh Gerstein at Politico today received a stolen copy of a draft opinion overturning roe v wade and published it. And yet he sleeps well in his own bed tonight, with no fear of being rousted at 6 am by short, loud, thuggish FBI agents as I was, and handcuffed. It is right that he not fear prosecution. It is wrong that we must. Welcome to America in 2022."

Comment: "The Democrat Party has had both the White House and Congressional majorities multiple times since Roe was decided in 1973, and not once did your party attempt to enshrine reproductive rights legislation into law that would have removed the SCOTUS from this conversation entirely.Why? Because Dems retain more political capital by forcing an abortion litmus test upon every judicial nominee the GOP puts forth. It's a total boon for fear-mongered fundraising and for rallying your base in times... well, in times like these, when you face utter annihilation in the midterms because you sold your fucking souls to the marxist wing of the party. And let's not kid ourselves, they're no longer outliers but a core component of the DNC moving forward and no amount of gaslighting can change that fact. For Christ's sake at least be honest about it; you're a much better attack dog than apologist.Even left-leaning legal scholars concede that Roe was a flimsy decision ripe to be challenged, and overturning it won't "outlaw abortion," it'll just push those laws to the states where they belong. Think of all the fun you'll have deriding states like Alabama, Mississippi and Texas as unwashed, bible-thumping rubes that the erudite Manhattanite couldn't save from themselves. You know, kind of like you were doing anyway but with a smidge more arrogance. Just don't pretend that they represent anything more than something to be leveraged for votes."

LILLEY: American abortion fight soon to become an issue for Trudeau | Toronto Sun - "it doesn’t really have an impact in Canada, at least not legally.  Politically, that’s another story.   I’ve never understood why Canadians, on either side of the abortion debate, obsess over Roe. The court decision which brought about what is colloquially called a “woman’s right to choose” isn’t in effect in Canada. The 1988 Morgentaler decision from Canada’s Supreme Court is a much different decision, one that even invited legislators to pass a new law if they saw fit.  From a legal standpoint, abortion laws and jurisprudence are very different on our side of the border.  As Warren Kinsella rightly point out, though, politics is another matter, and he fully expects Justin Trudeau and the Liberals to use what is about to happen south of the border to their advantage here... Despite claims not to want to import “American-style politics,” the Liberals actually love doing so. There is no “woman’s right to choose” established in Morgentaler but they use the American lingo. There is little threat of abortion being banned in Canada, but they will drag that bogeyman north of the border for their political advantage.  There aren’t enough pro-life MPs elected to pass any laws restricting abortion through Parliament but that won’t matter or be discussed as this issue takes over our politics. Nor are there judges that would seek to overturn the Morgentaler decision, which clearly said it is up to Parliament to decide, but that won’t matter either.  We are about to be treated to a black-and-white-morality play where anyone advocating for abortion is good and anyone having any qualms, concerns or opposition is bad. Canadians have nuanced views on the issue of abortion. Decades of polling has shown that while they don’t want abortion made illegal, a majority of voters – including women – would accept some restrictions on when and how abortions can take place.  For example, a Maru poll conducted for Postmedia in February 2020 found that 70% of Canadians, including 74% of women, believe that abortion should be “generally illegal” in the last three months of pregnancy. This same poll found that overwhelmingly, the public did not want abortion to be banned outright.  There have been multiple polls going back years showing support for regulating sex-selective abortions... Don’t expect to hear these arguments made when Trudeau and his team bring the American abortion debate to Canada. While Canadian views are nuanced on the issue of abortion, our media landscape is near universal in believing that Canada should remain one of the few countries in the world without any regulations on the matter.  France restricts abortion after 16 weeks’ pregnancy, Germany after 14 weeks and Italy after 12 weeks. None of these countries are run by the caricature of a Bible-thumping Deep South Republican that we will be treated to on our newscasts to frame the debate."

Late-Term Abortion and Medical Necessity: A Failure of Science - "Roe V. Wade (1973) placed the concept of medical necessity at the center of the public discourse on abortion. Nearly a half century later, 2 laws dealing with late-term abortion, 1 passed in New York and 1 set aside in Virginia, are an indication that the medical necessity argument regarding abortion has been rendered irrelevant. More importantly for this discussion, these laws are an indication of the failure of the US scientific and medical communities to inform this consequential topic with transparency, logical coherence, and evidence-based objectivity... A more recent Guttmacher study focused on abortion after 20 weeks of gestation and similarly concluded that women seeking late-term abortions were not doing so for reasons of fetal anomaly or life endangerment. The study further concluded that late-term abortion seekers were younger and more likely to be unemployed than those seeking earlier abortions. It is estimated that about 1% of all abortions in the United States are performed after 20 weeks, or approximately 10 000 to 15 000 annually. Since the Roe framework essentially medicalized abortion decisions beyond the first trimester, and since abortions in the United States are now performed on demand and only rarely for medical reasons which could end the life of the mother, what can we conclude about the value and impact of medical necessity determination in the case of induced abortion? A prescient proabortion author predicted today’s events with remarkable foresight when he concluded that the “rhetoric of medical necessity” is a mistaken strategy because “it is not the empirical evidence of what is or is not medically necessary which is important,” but rather “who possesses the ability to interpret necessity within key political contexts.” When viewed from this perspective, it is possible to see the recent New York and Virginia legislation as a signal that politics, not science, is the most powerful influence on abortion issues and legislation."

Meme - Eatmysnaz @e8mysnaz: "OMS this abortion debate is being used against us. They're trying to deny the FACT that MEN can have ABORTIONS too and cut "trans people" (AKA real men) out of the abortion debate like they cut us out of everything else like bathrooms just because it will have a negative effect on cis people. l'll say this again, I'll say it loud and clear, one more time, for those of you who don't seem to understand reality yet. Men can have periods, men need tampons, men need mamograms, prenatal care, midwives, breastfeeding support! Men can have babies and abortions! This is about birthing people's rights and that includes MEN!"

Here's Planned Parenthood seriously pretending to care about an unborn baby 🤦‍♂️ - "Celebrities Chrissy Teigen and John Legend revealed the painful loss of their unborn son, Jack, on social media... "We're so sorry to hear that Chrissy Teigen and John Legend lost their" ... their what, Planned Parenthood? Their "son," you say? Not their "clump of cells" or their "pregnancy tissue"?"

Things got super awkward when Ben & Jerry were asked if they’d stop selling ice cream in pro-life Texas 😬 - "uber-lefty Ben & Jerry's said it would stop selling ice cream in areas it says are "occupied" by Israel... Unfortunately, it seems like the ice cream guys, like most woke ideologues, prefer virtue signaling to losing a giant share of their profits. Sad!"

'Thanks You Old Dead White B****': Leftists Lash Out Over Texas Abortion Law, Blame Ruth Bader Ginsburg - "Last September, when Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died, liberals waxed poetic about her career... Liberal assessment of Ginsburg after Wednesday’s ruling: “thanks you old dead white b****.”... While the decision is likely different than what would have come down under last year’s court, this wasn’t the death knell of Roe v. Wade that liberals made it out to be — as much as any impediment to unfettered abortion is invariably painted in those terms.  As The Wall Street Journal pointed out, Texas’ fetal heartbeat law “was constructed with legal trap doors and the intention to make it as difficult as possible to challenge in court.”...   But then, part of the freakout is clearly directed at liberal Justice Stephen Breyer, who is 83 and has served on the court for 27 years now."

Pro-abortion activist reveals she has no idea what child support is | The Post Millennial - "After Texas passed a pro-life law that essentially outlaws abortions after 6 weeks gestation, the American pro-abortion movement went nuts. Many on the left have said that abortion has to be legal because the American system doesn't adequately support mothers and children. Julia Ioffe, a journalist and partner with Puck News, tweeted on Thursday that if abortion is going to be illegal, men need to be asked to step up and take responsibility for the fruit of their loins. Ioffe said that if those men who get a woman pregnant could "contribute" and pay "child support." Conservative men who oppose abortion loved this idea, noting that it's called marriage, fatherhood, and child-support.  "If you are anti-choice and you want to make sure women carry every pregnancy to term, why not make the person who created the pregnancy contribute? Why not have men pay child support to the women they impregnate? Surely, it is not the woman’s responsibility alone?" asked Ioffe on Twitter. The response to this notion that Ioffee apparently saw as revolutionary was swift and fierce. Lydia Deetz, the producer of Timcast, sarcastically slammed Ioffe, saying "Ummmm is this... Marriage? Did you just invent marriage?". Matt Palumbo of the Bongino Report, also pointed out the obvious, that "child support" actually already is a thing... Pro-abortion activists may be surprised to find that the men who are advocating against abortion and in favor of life are also prepared to take responsibility for that life, willingly, honorably, and gratefully."

Friday, May 06, 2022

Links - 6th May 2022 (2 - General Wokeness)

Is Complaining About Street Sexual Harassment Racist? - "Three years before anti-street-sexual-harassment group Hollaback! released its controversial video — in which a white woman walks New York and receives more than 100 catcalls in one day — the women-of-color-led group Girls for Equality produced a similar one. One of these videos has 33 million views. The other, fewer than 30,000. “I mean is everyone only paying attention because there’s a white woman in Hollaback’s video?” Crunk Feminist Collective’s Brittney Cooper asked yesterday. If it does take a white woman appearing to be victimized by black and Latino men to get people to care about street sexual harassment — which happens everywhere, to women of all races, at the hands of men of all races — that’s depressing. One small silver lining is that the backlash was loud and swift, yielding a much more interesting conversation that included race and class. Hollaback! was immediately slammed for editing white catcallers out of their video — the reason, the group explained, was that “a lot of what they said was in passing” or off-camera or drowned out by sirens. (Put differently: Men of all races catcall, but white men don’t get caught.)... “Should current laws dealing with harassment be strengthened to include catcalling”? But the racial optics of the viral video meant that this criminalization debate had troubling implications. Being a black man in New York City already means you will be treated like a criminal. Are catcalls so bad that white women want to add them to the list of nonviolent reasons these men are disproportionately (and often violently) harassed by the police? Still, one video doesn’t tell us how street sexual harassment breaks down by race or class or geography. And the Hollaback! app — which tracks and maps users’ reports of street sexual harassment — doesn’t collect data on race, either. (That would be racist, the creators said.) But it does reveal that most of the smartphone-enabled reports come out of gentrifying neighborhoods in lower Manhattan and West Brooklyn. This appears to confirm what the video’s optics suggested: The people most loudly complaining about catcalls are the ones most insulated from more serious problems of racial profiling and economic inequality.   After all, getting catcalled in a gentrifying neighborhood isn’t just a reminder that because someone is young and female her body is up for grabs (besides, that happens in subtler ways all the time). It foremost means being forced to acknowledge some of the people who lived there in a time before gut renovations and organic bodegas and speakeasies. A gentrifier like me can always move back to the quiet, catcall-free suburbs; the guy who hangs outside my subway stop all day probably can’t. So when he tells me I look beautiful today, I say “thank you” instead of tattling on an app. It’s never led to an escalation that made me uncomfortable and, as a result, I’ve been hesitant to complain about catcalls as an issue.   But that may not be true for all women — especially the victims of street harassment not represented by Hollaback!’s narrow take. If men are “brazen enough to harass white women and their protected femininities on the street,” Cooper wrote, “what won’t they do to cis and trans women of color, whose womanhood is structurally devalued?” For trans women of color, street sexual harassment is often a matter of life and death. It’s their safety and comfort that gets lost when we allow street sexual harassment to be cast as a threat to white gentrifiers. And it’s their harassment I risk condoning when I opt to rank the injustices of the world rather than confront a universal one, in spite of my guilt and discomfort. “We ain’t fighting for a world in which brothers get to be patriarchs,” Cooper wrote. “That’s not what my anti-racist analysis will be used in the service of.”"
I like how the assumption is that men of all races harass equally (yet, of course, we cannot assume that women harass the same as men, since women are not a socially acceptable group to hate on); apparently "in passing" "harassment" is as bad as normal "harassment". Either that or white privilege involves the universe playing sirens to drown out your "harassment"
In the progressive hierarchy, women (as a whole) are above (below) "minority" men
Maybe this just show the fragility of rich liberal women, since they complain disproportionately

William Wolfe on Twitter - "When people sanctimoniously say "Do better" to those not completely bought into to their progressive ideology, they really just mean "Agree with me.""

Andy Ngô 🏳️‍🌈 on Twitter - "“I love saying n—ger fa—got” Newly surfaced video of Ethan Klein (@h3h3productions) shows him using racist & anti-gay slurs. Klein deleted his old interview with @jordanbpeterson yesterday, claiming the professor is hateful & a “gateway to alt-right.”"

Razib 🥥 Khan on Twitter - "many of us come from families with a multi-generational legacy of being in scientific fields, so it is really bizarre to encounter the idea that science is deeply (as opposed to contingently) 'western' at university...…"

Helen Pluckrose is on a Tw!tter break. Yes, really on Twitter - "I am deeply ashamed that so many non-Western medical professionals and engineers (mostly from India. Pakistan & Nigeria) come here to fulfil a need for them and then have to deal with this orientalist bullshit about STEM being a white & Western “way of knowing.”
For anybody who is not entirely clear on this: Science, medicine, engineering, tech, maths = definitely not Western inventions.
Shitty Critical theories of social Justice rooted in some German neo-Marxist & more French postmodern ideas = definitely a Western invention.
If you genuinely want to “decolonise” everything, stop trying to make non-westerners assimilate to western critical theories of race & gender. While you’re at it, stop trying to make the majority of westerners who also think it harmful, essentialist bullshit conform to it too."

Bertrand Cooper on Twitter - ""non-white ways of knowing" often seems to carry the implication that non-whiteness is intrinsically progressive, as if modeled off of 21st century values. It reminds me of when white family members of mine found yoga and then fetishized India/Hinduism into a personal fairytale."
Free Black Thought on Twitter - "If it's not Western, it's morally pure."
Liberals just hate the West/white people

Meta to bring in mandatory distances between virtual reality avatars - "In December a user testing Horizon Worlds, a VR app owned by Zuckberg’s Meta business, complained of being groped online and called for a protective bubble around their avatar, or digital representation of themselves"

Thread by @wrong_speak on Thread Reader App – Thread Reader App - "I grow tired of people using black people like a political football, throwing us from one cause to another to manufacture outrage for policy change & to appear virtuous. You people are our villains pretending to be our saviors...  
Since the verdict of Kyle Rittenhouse, there has been an abundance of people, especially white leftists, who feel the need to invoke black people because they don't like the way things turned out. If you are this person, fuck you. I normally don't speak this harshly but you people always grab microphones to speak for black people as if you are our saviors. You believe you're these virtuous heavenly soldiers here to save us weak black people, when you're the exact devil we don't need. You are our villains. Let me say this again, you are our fucking villains. You are the type of people who record themselves giving homeless people $20 so you can try to trick people into believing you're a good person. God knows what you really are. He can't be swindled.
 Every time you people stand up for "black people", you're not helping. You constantly interfere by manufacturing narratives that are unproductive for many black people and you constantly group us together like we are monolithic beings. The fact that you think you NEED to carry signs and wear T-Shirts letting us know that you think our lives matter is the problem. You're not convincing anyone else but yourselves. You people are selfish, manipulative elitists and every time you attempt to use black people as a manipulative tool to get something you want politically, I will be sure to call you out. We do not need saving, you do. We do not need your help but you sure as hell need some help. Quit transferring your insecurities onto a group of people. And quit using black people for your political motives & your Twitter clap backs because it only displays your low character."

Meme - "Woke people talking about how they are "The Revolution' *TV Camera filming graffiti: 'Obey The Rules'"

Terrika on Twitter - "So Tom Brady had alllllll weekend to confirm his retirement but instead decides to wait to the first day of Black History Month to make it all about him… see why I don’t f*** with Brady… 🤷🏾‍♀️"

Meme - "Blacks calculating how they lost control of the world after being the Egyptians, Jews, Moors, Celts, inventing everything and building the USA | WE WUZ KINGS"

Meme - "Alexander the Great spends his entire life with aman named Hephaestion and when Hephaestion dies, Alexander cuts off his hair, bans music, crucifies the doctor and burns down the temple to the god of healing.
Historians: Like, are they friends?"
Comments (elsewhere): ""Oh my god why are men so afraid to show emotions?"
When men show emotions:"
"do they not know what alexander did for his horse?"

Meme - PhilosophiCat @Philosophi_Cat: "I follow LOTR as a topic on Twitter and 90% of the suggested posts are from the alphabet soup crowd insisting that Frodo and Sam were gay for each other because sexual degenerates can't understand the difference between love and sex.
Sam literally pined for Rosie the entire time and the first thing he did when he got back was marry her, Sam following through to help Frodo out of a sense of duty and loyalty (something else degenerates can't understand) in no way indicates anything homoerotic."

Do you love or hate your flag? Welcome to a long-running artistic controversy - "a group of artists in New Zealand called Mercy Pictures hosted a show, at a gallery of the same name, entitled People of Colour. The show consisted of hundreds of pictures of small painted flags (not the flags themselves) representing multiple countries, groups, organisations, identities, fictional places and projects. I was asked by the artists to write a short text about flags, which I was happy to do.  I thought the show sounded interesting: what would be the effect of having representations of all these different flags alongside one another? Would their individual meaning be heightened or diminished? What might we learn about tribalism and belonging? What effect does removing symbols from their political context tell us about how art might tackle questions of belonging, nationhood and the symbolic realm as such?  Somewhat predictably, in this era of manufactured outrage, the artists (and I, for that matter, despite having no role in the idea for the show) were accused of causing “great offense” because paintings of Nazi and white supremacist flags were included alongside paintings of Maori flags. The gallery was vandalised, and anyone who had anything to do with the show was pilloried, insulted and attacked, despite no one involved being any more a member of the far-Right than they were part of the UN Blue Helmets, or a resident of Narnia. As the writer James Robb neatly summarised it: “The provocative juxtaposition of the flags was the point of the show, raising questions about the symbolism and emotions human beings invest in flags, and the sensitivities, misunderstandings and offence caused when other people have different attitudes to a flag.”  More recently, another flag show Down Under caused similar “upset”. Tasmania’s Dark Mofo festival pulled a piece titled Union Flag by the well-respected Spanish artist Santiago Sierra. The work, which consists of a Union Flag soaked in the freely-donated blood of people from colonised territories, is bluntly, but very obviously, addressing questions of history, violence, occupation and exploitation. But Santiago is Spanish, and therefore, according to the work’s detractors, somehow on the side of the coloniser, and thus the work must go. This logic is so racist it defies belief: no one who has ever been a member of a country that has ever committed violence – and let’s face it, there are virtually no states for which this is the case – can occupy a critical role in relation to their country’s past.   How is history supposed to progress if all human beings are atavistic, and no one can ever do anything but represent their own tribe, however made-up that belong might be? What happened to our dreams of universalism and internationalism? Today’s identitarian logic allows no other kinds of collective being; you might think that we’re united in being human, but that’s Enlightenment reasoning, and therefore forbidden. We are almost all united as workers, but then we’re forcibly divided by race and sexual identity. It used to be understood that this kind of division best served those in power, but today consumerist and atomised distinctions rule.   Even though First Nations donors gladly participated in Sierra’s project, their desire counts for nothing: art today, his detractors imply, can only be understood on the most literal level, and audiences must be protected from having to think too much. By that logic, fiction might as well be banned, and all cultural expression be strictly in accordance with the “identity” of the artist. If anyone is offended, anywhere, by anything, or pretends to be, everything is off! This is art as a mere extension of the worst kind of politics."

Macy Gray calls for replacing 'dated, divisive' American flag - "Singer Macy Gray is calling for a new United States flag that is a little more diverse.  Gray, a popular soul and R&B singer, said the current flag no longer represented “all” Americans.  “The American flag has been hijacked as code for a specific belief. God bless those believers, they can have it,” Gray, 53 wrote in an editorial for MarketWatch. “Like the Confederate, it is tattered, dated, divisive, and incorrect. It no longer represents democracy and freedom. It no longer represents ALL of us. It’s not fair to be forced to honor it. It’s time for a new flag.”  Gray suggested a new flag with “off white” bars and stars that were white alongside ones that were black and brown to reflect America’s diversity.   “The Smithsonian documents that the ‘white’ stripes represent purity and innocence. America is great. It is beautiful. Pure, it ain’t. It is broken and in pieces.”"
We're still told that liberals don't hate their countries

Pimlico Academy headmaster caves in to protesting students who burned 'racist' Union Flag - "A headteacher who caved to demands by pupils to take down the “racist” Union flag has faced backlash from MPs.  Daniel Smith, headteacher of Pimlico Academy provoked protests from students after amending the schools uniform policy to ban hairstyles which block the view of others. The policy also stipulated that hijabs worn by Muslim students shouldn’t be “too colourful”... Students staged a walk out on Wednesday in protest of the uniform policy and the school’s failure to adequately respond to the Black Lives Matter movement."

In the culture war era, we can no longer afford to write off flag waving as un-British - "a lot of the people who claim to be indifferent to flags are strikingly selective in their indifference. If you were truly left cold by the Union flag, why would you need to keep saying so? And why would you feel impelled to poke fun at those who like to see it flapping about?  Even more striking is the flag snobs’ selectiveness about which flags they disdain. Union flags and St George’s crosses are fair game. But how often do they extend their vexilo-scepticism to, say, the blue-and-gold EU banner? All week, BBC comedians, Twitter poseurs and a handful of Labour politicians have been mocking the idea of flying the Union flag permanently from government buildings – an idea supported, according to a YouGov poll on Thursday, by 58 to 19 per cent of the electorate at large – but no one, as far as I can tell, has complained about the fact that the 12-star flag flies permanently from EU buildings.   It isn’t really bits of dyed cloth per se that rouse the cleverdicks’ scorn, of course. It isn’t even nationalism: they’re fine with nationalism when it’s Palestinian, Venezuelan or Irish. No, their real quarrel is with the United Kingdom...   There is nothing new about the peculiar disdain British intellectuals feel for their own country. It is, though, a bizarre affliction. Few countries have done more to advance the causes of toleration, equality before the law or representative government. If, down the centuries, you had to pick somewhere to be born poor, female or in a religious minority, you wouldn’t hesitate for long.   Still, if you are determined to find fault, you will. You will convince yourself that we were monstrous slavers, and overlook the fact that it was our altruistic campaign that eliminated a previously near-universal trade. You will come to believe that it was really the Soviet Union that defeated the Nazis – forgetting that they were on the same side for the first third of the war. You will maintain, despite a mass of polling data showing the opposite, that we are an unusually racist and intolerant people.   Your Angloscepticism might lead you into some strange alliances. Jeremy Corbyn made excuses for almost anyone who was sufficiently anti-British – Hamas, Hezbollah, the IRA, even Vladimir Putin, whose reactionary, militaristic and authoritarian regime he would, in any other circumstance, have detested.  In a milder form, Angloscepticism makes people overlook the flaws in, say, Nicola Sturgeon, or Ursula von der Leyen. It’s not exactly that they get misty-eyed about Scottish patriotism, or that they are blind to the corrupt and self-serving nature of EU institutions. It’s more that they like sticking it to the sorts of people who hang Union flags in their windows... Flag snobbery is a proxy for a campaign to traduce Britain, to smear it as bigoted and bellicose, to knock down its statues, to divide it into smaller pieces or even – though they mostly accept that this is now a nostalgic fantasy – to dissolve it into a bigger European polity.   Yet a world without the UK would be a poorer, meaner place. Who has done more to spread private property, jury trials, parliamentary elections, habeas corpus or personal autonomy? Who has made such a contribution to scientific and medical advance? A world without Britain is a world in which darker and more authoritarian forces – from Bonapartism to Stalinism – would have gone unchecked. A world in which the UK broke apart would be a world in which there was less trade, less prosperity, less innovation – and in which the coalition for freedom was feebler.  The flag is a symbol of British liberty, a symbol everyone can adopt, regardless of where their grandparents were born. A country that derides such symbols will struggle to assimilate newcomers: without a shared sense of identity, there is nothing for them to integrate into. Which is why those of us who, until now, have been mildly and diffidently pro-flag, should make a bit more of an effort. We did not want this culture war; but, like it or not, we are in it now."

Council Cracks Down On Free Speech, Forces Employees to Fly LGBTQ Flags - "Melton City Council is cracking down on diversity of thought by forcing all employees to display an endorsement of LGBTQ ideology in their email signatures, regardless of their personal beliefs and religious faith.   Over 500 council employees were notified on Friday that the council’s signature template would be updated to include an image of the rainbow flag advocating for LGBTQ issues, along with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags...   “I don’t think it’s professional or respectful for government representatives to be adding a rainbow flag to emails when I ask about hall hire rates or zoning issues,” a local said.  “They should just treat everybody well and then stick to their jobs.”"

Gallery highlights ‘male gaze’ in Manet masterpiece in ‘woke attempt to call out misogyny’ - "The “male gaze” in a Manet masterpiece has been highlighted by the Courtauld Gallery after curators introduced new labels addressing “misogyny” in art.  The London gallery, which holds the UK’s foremost Impressionist collection, reviewed the labelling of all of its paintings as part of a three-year, £57 million refurbishment. Some information panels now address issues like artists’ racism and sexism.   Manet's masterpiece, A Bar at the Folies-Bergère, has been reinterpreted with a new label which suggests that the painting has an “unsettling” quality, because of the presence of a man on the canvas."

School board cancels plans to name school after Obama after protests by immigration activists - "Bruce Springsteen might like him. Netflix might like him. But if the Waukegan school district name change controversy is anything to go by, one particular area of Illinois despises former President Obama... It was back at the end of March that the Waukegan, Illinois Board of Education met to deliberate name changes for two middle schools. Thomas Jefferson and Daniel Webster's connection to slavery is what kicked the initiative off in the first place. Barack and Michelle Obama made it to the list of potential finalists for Thomas Jefferson Middle School. But then former President Obama's record on deportations came up."
I thought if you criticised Obama it meant you were racist

People are accusing York University of years of anti-Black racism against professor - "More than 6,000 people have signed a petition in support of a professor who is facing termination and alleging anti-Black racism at York University.   Dr. Aimé Avolonto, who has been a professor of French Studies at York's Glendon College since 2004, is levelling allegations of racism, harassment, and unfair termination against York University and its staff...   Following a multi-year external investigation conducted by Roger Beaudry of Aptus Solutions—a process which the petition alleges prioritized testimonies from white interviewees over Black witnesses—York U is now countering Avolonto's claims with some of their own. According to Joy, York University received its first complaint against Avolonto in 2016, followed by additional allegations the following year.  "Following a thorough, independent external investigation, multiple reports have concluded that allegations against Professor Avolonto of workplace harassment, including gender-based and sexual harassment, were founded," said Joy.  "The University takes its responsibility to maintain a safe workplace seriously and is acting accordingly.""
Presumably if a black man harasses women, the solution is to blame a white man otherwise it'll be racist

Meme - "Quand la fille qui arrete pes da poster "ACAB" appelle les flics quand tu rentres par effraction chez elle"

Adam Zivo: Pride boycott of Halifax library a disturbing attack on free expression - "Halifax Pride boycotted Halifax Public Library over a refusal to pull a book from its shelves. The book — Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters by Abigail Shrier — is considered by many to be transphobic and rife with misinformation. The boycott is part of a disturbing pattern of Canadian pride festivals penalizing library systems for defending freedom of expression. In 2019, Meghan Murphy, a writer frequently accused of transphobia, was invited to speak at a third party event hosted at the Toronto Public Library. In response, Pride Toronto published an open letter melodramatically stating that “there will be consequences to our relationship for this betrayal.” That same year, Vancouver Pride banned its local library system from the parade for allowing Murphy to book space for an event. Whether squelching speakers or banning books, the underlying issue is how we treat freedom of expression in our institutions — because what is book banning but another imposition on a thinker’s right to expression?  Pride Festivals, along with many LGBTQ activists, believe that they have the right to police what views are allowed to publicly exist, or what ideas people have access to. As an LGBTQ activist myself, I find this behaviour disappointingly reckless. LGBTQ activists should, by all rights, be enthusiastic supporters of freedom of expression — especially for views considered unpopular and harmful. Why is it that so many activists forget how integral that freedom has been to their own success?...   When LGBTQ organizations try to de-platform people and ban books at libraries, they claim the right to reject government definitions of unacceptable hate (which are carefully formulated) and instead define that themselves, unilaterally, without consulting wider society, and without an accessible or accountable discussion on what that new definition should be and why its benefits outweigh its costs.  Everyone has the right to define unacceptable hate however they want in their private lives, but when you try to impose that on the government and weaponize state power, that’s a different story and requires wider societal and legal consultation. If you want something deemed too hateful to be public, then properly lobby for that — coercive bans and quasi-mafioso references to “consequences” are unproductive and juvenile. Relatedly, if LGBTQ activists are confident that their opponents are wrong, then they should do the work of persuading people about why that is, allowing individuals to freely judge for themselves. This is a basic duty of activism — the duty to persuade — and Canadian pride festivals have been abdicating that duty.   If you are unwilling or unable to engage someone who is outside of your support base, the solution is not to paternalistically limit their access to information. Yet that is what is happening because persuasion is out of vogue, having been displaced by activism that whines about “emotional labour” and dispenses catch-phrases like “it’s not my job to educate you.” Why anyone thinks it’s clever to raise artificial barriers to disseminating knowledge about your rights is beyond me. The result has been a widespread backlash against LGBTQ rights. An infamous 2019 GLAAD study showed Americans, especially younger ones, have become more uncomfortable with LGBTQ people (the study has since been discontinued). As I’ve written about before, it turns out that when you suppress outward articulations of belief, while leaving people unchanged on the inside, you create resentment and discomfort. Who would have thought?   When LGBTQ organizations advocate for banning books, they lean into the bull-headedness that has been fuelling the backlash against them, endangering the communities that they represent.  Having taken it for granted that whatever progress they’ve won will last in perpetuity, many members of the LGBTQ community also discount the possibility that they might benefit from freedom of expression again in the future. Yet, given the aforementioned backlash against their rights, that’s a risky assumption to make — not necessarily in the near future, but very possibly in the long view. Finally, freedom of expression will surely be essential for other groups that, while currently stigmatized, may eventually earn social acceptance in the future — much as LGBTQ people did over the past few decades. Since evolutions in social and moral norms are unpredictable, this freedom needs to be given widely and neutrally so all groups can equally advocate for themselves (whether that advocacy succeeds is another question). Inviting more limitations on thoughts and words endangers that."
Liberals pretend to be against "book bans", but claim everything they disagree with is "harmful"

Terms such as 'white privilege' may have contributed to 'neglect' of disadvantaged white pupils, report by MPs finds - "The use of terms including "white privilege" may have contributed to the "neglect" of white working-class pupils in the education system, a Commons committee has found.  MPs on the Education Select Committee said schools must consider the implication of such "politically controversial terminology" and find "a better way to talk about racial disparities". A report by the committee agreed with the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities that the term "white privilege" can be "divisive" and said disadvantaged white pupils have been let down by "muddled" policy thinking. It also accused the Department for Education (DfE) of failing to acknowledge the extent of the problem.  Conservative MP and chairman of the Education Select Committee Robert Halfon said white working-class pupils have been "let down and neglected" by the system "for decades"... white people are the ethnic majority in the country, yet FSM-eligible white British pupils are the largest disadvantaged group... "Never again should we lazily put the gap down to poverty alone, given that we know free school meal eligible pupils from other ethnic groups consistently outperform their white British peers.""
Demonising groups has very real consequences

Librarian had no bias cutting biracial girl's hair: district - "A Michigan elementary school librarian accused of a “modern-day scalping” for cutting a biracial girl’s hair will get to keep her job, district officials said, finding that she didn’t act with racial bias."
Anything done to a "minority" must be motivated by bias

Florida students say 9/11 education should avoid placing blame and 'American exceptionalism' - "Students from the University of Florida say education about the 9/11 attacks 'should avoid placing blame' and called for a stop to perpetuating ideas of 'American exceptionalism' in the latest example of woke ideas run amok on college campuses.   Ahead of the 20th anniversary, student reporter Ophelie Jacobson surveyed students at the Gainesville campus to ask their opinions about education surrounding the terrorist attacks on September 1, 2001.   She noted that students today were too young- or not alive -during the 9/11 attacks to have their own memories of the tragic events. Most students said that they did not remember learning about the 9/11 attacks extensively during their schooling... the Virginia Department of Education was slammed for promoting a teacher training video which instructs teachers to avoid calling the 9/11 killers 'terrorists', and to avoid promoting 'American exceptionalism' during lessons about the attacks.   The nearly two-hour long video, which has since been removed, was posted on the VDOE's YouTube channel to promote a 'culturally responsive and inclusive 9/11 commemoration' to guide teachers how to broach the sensitive subject 'in a way that does not cause harm.'... She claimed that asking students to 'stand and condemn 9/11' in a performative way would be 'highly inappropriate.'  She also suggested that teachers use the word 'extremists' instead of 'terrorists' to further 'disrupt this false equivalency of Muslims and terrorism.'"
Of course, if you don't call all acts of violence by white men "terrorism" (even if not politically motivated), that is proof of "white supremacy"

'Stuck in a rut': Andrew Potter catalogues our ongoing decline - The Hub - "There’s this line from Bertrand Russell, that I quote in the book, where he says something like, “We’ve gone from a world where our chief opponent is nature to one where our chief opponent is other people. And the richer you get, the less you have to worry about nature, and the more you have to worry about other people.” I think there’s something really profound about that. That is to say, a feature of a lot of our beliefs today is that they no longer need to hook on to the world in a meaningful sense anymore. What matters is how our beliefs situate us with respect to other people, and their identities, politics, and so on. I think that’s the core of a lot of the “woke” versus the alt-right that’s going on right now, which is that you can believe all kinds of crazy things on the left; you have all kinds of crazy views on the right, but what matters is how it positions you with respect to the identity politics and cultural warfare that’s going on right now... I have a line that I stole from Philippe Lagassé, who you might know as a foreign and defence policy professor at Carleton University, where he once tweeted something to the effect that, “What people don’t realize is that we’re as religious as we ever were. Only the gods have changed.”... people on both sides of the political spectrum at the extremes have profoundly magical views about how the world works and about what’s going on, whether it’s the almost crazy approaches in the far-right towards vaccines and 5G computer chips and the deep, abiding conviction that there are effective conspiracies at work in the world; and the left with everything from Gwyneth Paltrow and her Goop, to the magical approaches towards language that goes on in the intense policy of language. This is all just religiosity by another means. I also sometimes wonder whether there’s a bit of spiritual homeostasis in the human brain. That is, that as one form of religiosity declines, it simply gets squeezed like a balloon into another part. That we’re never going to secularize; we’re not going to become a civilization of Mr. Spocks. It’s just not going to happen. So, the question is, are those religious values getting pushed into something productive or something unproductive? I say this as someone who was staunchly secular and anti-religious for a long time, I believe that organized religions have had a much more productive and positive influence on society than the increasingly baroque and bespoke forms of religiosity that are at work right now."
"Much of modern politics seems increasingly consumed by distributional questions rather than ones of growth, dynamism, and progress. How can we re-orient our politics away from zero-sum debates, and towards greater ambition and abundance?"
"we have to start believing the growth is a good thing. I think it’s become a bad word, because growth is attributed to and is considered a part of resource exploitation, and resource exploitation is considered bad because of environmental effects, climate change, and so on. It’s a very short hop then from advocating growth to destroying the planet.   The pro-growth crowd has done a bad job of showing that it doesn’t have to be the case; that growth and environmental preservation are actually allies... The second aspect of it is growth and innovation. I’m actually quite persuaded by a lot of the arguments in Hall’s book, Where Is My Flying Car?: A Memoir of Future Past. I think that one of the big lessons that I worry about coming out of the pandemic is whether we have simply strangled our capacities for innovation in layers of bureaucracy, regulations, and forms of risk aversion.   I used to laugh when someone like Tony Clement would come on and say, “Oh, we’re going to introduce a red tape bill, where every new regulation has to go along with the elimination of one or two existing regulations,” because it seems like a very simplistic approach. But I’m increasingly sympathetic toward the general view that we stumbled onto a buffet, about 150 years ago, of innovation and productivity, and that we gorged ourselves. But you can’t then tie the kitchen up in regulations and red tape and expect yourself to continue to be fed. So, I think we need to find a way of cutting through a lot of this that’s going on right now"

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