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Valar Qringaomis

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Monday, December 05, 2016

Links - 5th December 2016

Hate crime: the facts behind the headlines - "One of the chief criticisms of hate crimes is that they are rooted in perception. This introduces an element of subjectivity with the victim essentially determining whether it is a hate crime or not; people may see what they want and add a hate crime motivation to what may be an everyday crime or incident. Many of the incidents that fuelled press reports of increasing levels of hate crime were based on incidents logged in forums like Worrying Signs, often by an individual with no independent corroboration or context... The majority of police-recorded hate crimes are non-violent... no more than one in 10 recorded hate crimes are physically injurious to the victim... many crimes are being assumed as hate crimes, even when there is no evidence to suggest that they are. Press reports then often link the incidents to Brexit, even where there is no evidence of a link... The way in which all three collate information is problematic. None seeks independent verification that an incident has taken place: they all simply log the reports as they come in. Each is effectively a catalogue of alleged incidents with no corroboration... the first logged incident is as follows: Manchester – 28th June. A group of young men hurled racist abuse at a fellow bus passenger. Telling him to “get back to Africa” and throwing beer on him.‟ If we take this incident at face value and assume that the reporting of it is completely accurate, it is still difficult to see what it has to do with the EU referendum or the campaign... It should also be noted that reported hate crime has been trending upwards for the last few years, long before the EU referendum campaign began. Does this reflect a widespread increase in intolerance towards certain minorities? Or does it reflect the rising profile of hate crime as a category of offence and the opportunity to report it"

Police: Lafayette student lied about being robbed of wallet, hijab by Trump supporters – will face charges - "The 18-year-old Middle Eastern student reported to police Wednesday that she was walking to class about 11 a.m. when two white men, one wearing a Donald Trump hat, jumped out of an SUV, struck her and hit her repeatedly. She also said the men yelled racial slurs at her, ripped her hijab off her head and stole her wallet. She has since admitted to police that she lied about the attack. The story made national headlines and was featured in The New York Times, The Huffington Post and other national media outlets. Messages of love and support were found all over UL Lafayette’s campus after news of the attack spread."

Sorry, Trump Protestors: This Is What Democracy Looks Like - "“This is what democracy looks like!” That was my favorite chant during the anti-war protests I participated in my senior year of high school in 2004. Twelve years later, the same folks I marched down Sixth Avenue with protesting outside the Fox News building are back at it, protesting the victory of Donald Trump. I’ve got some bad news for the thousands of my former comrades marching through the streets: You saw what democracy looks like on Tuesday night... I was driven from the progressive cause because I came to learn that messages about inclusiveness, love, and respect were contingent upon a very specific set of characteristics one had to already possess. We are seeing that same hypocrisy in the present... Chants of “not my president” are now heard reverberating through urban centers, shouted by the same folks who just a few days ago were warning of civil unrest when Trump was defeated."

Colleges Cancelled Exams for Students Traumatized by Trump's Election - "I don't blame students for being really, really upset about Trump's win. I know plenty of mentally stable, not-at-all-coddled people who were similarly upset. But they all still went in to work on Wednesday. Life goes on. It's possible the news is hitting students even harder than it hit members of the liberal media—college students, after all, are even more out-of-touch with the Trump movement than the media is. College campuses have created safe spaces to wall students off from the mildest forms of disagreement. Too many of them simply had no idea that great numbers of Americans despised their progressive agenda and were eager to strike a blow against political correctness... campus progressives have willfully pushed race-based and identity-group-based classifications: calling for segregated safe spaces and programs for students of color, LGBTQ students, Native American students, Latinos, and so on. At the same time, they have assailed white privilege and white fragility, treating white people like the enemy. In electing Trump, whites may have lived up to their expectations, but I can't help but wonder whether that was a foreseeable consequence of the left's campaign to demonize them."

Liberal Professors In America Give Students Day Off To Cope With Trump Victory

Democrats Blame 'Voter Suppression' For Clinton Loss At Their Peril - "There is thus far not enough evidence (as I’ve shown in this post) that these laws actually affected the outcome of the presidential election. We have statistics on a fewer number of polls open or early voting days in some of these states, and we know courts have found in some cases that up to hundreds of thousands of voters lacked the right kind of ID to vote in some strict voter id states. But it is a big empirical leap to claim that these cutbacks caused the losses for Democrats in states that mattered for the outcome of the electoral college. Lots of people who lacked id could have gotten it and voted. (A more plausible case could be made in some of these states that these laws mattered in races which are very, very close.) More importantly, even in states that had eased their voting and registration rules in recent years, such as Minnesota, Democratic turnout was way down. This is key: Hilllary Clinton is down millions of Democrats' votes (right now about 7 million votes) compared to Obama in 2012. People stayed home for reasons unrelated to voter suppression."

I’m a Muslim, a woman and an immigrant. I voted for Trump. - "as a liberal Muslim who has experienced, first-hand, Islamic extremism in this world, I have been opposed to the decision by President Obama and the Democratic Party to tap dance around the “Islam” in Islamic State. Of course, Trump’s rhetoric has been far more than indelicate and folks can have policy differences with his recommendations, but, to me, it has been exaggerated and demonized by the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, their media channels, such as Al Jazeera, and their proxies in the West, in a convenient distraction from the issue that most worries me as a human being on this earth: extremist Islam of the kind that has spilled blood from the hallways of the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai to the dance floor of the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla... The revelations of multimillion-dollar donations to the Clinton Foundation from Qatar and Saudi Arabia killed my support for Clinton... I have absolutely no fears about being a Muslim in a “Trump America.” The checks and balances in America and our rich history of social justice and civil rights will never allow the fear-mongering that has been attached to candidate Trump’s rhetoric to come to fruition. What worried me the most were my concerns about the influence of theocratic Muslim dictatorships, including Qatar and Saudi Arabia, in a Hillary Clinton America... We have to stand up with moral courage against not just hate against Muslims, but hate by Muslims, so that everyone can live with sukhun, or peace of mind"

Left-Wing Bigotry And Hatred Is On Full Display After Trump Win - " Exit polls show that 42% of women cast ballots for the Republican. Nearly half (49%) of independent voters backed Trump. So did 14% of LGBT voters. Trump did better among blacks, Latinos and other minorities, as well as lower-income voters, than the ultra-noncontroversial Mitt Romney did in 2012. Trump did almost as well among college graduates as Clinton — 45% to 49% — and captured half of the suburban vote. In other words, his support was widespread. But almost as soon as the election results came in, many on the left exploded in anger, smashing windows, setting fires, calling for Trump to be assassinated, and labeling his supporters bigots and sexists who should be murdered. Protesters burned Trump in effigy, and passed around a stuffed figure of Trump in a noose."

Sandbagged by Hope - Twenty-Six Letters - Quora - "Sure, the President was (still is) personally popular but the liking people feel for him never transferred to his policies. Since the day of its passage Obamacare has been about as popular as leftovers five days after Thanksgiving. If the right track/wrong track poll numbers are to be believed, the American people are profoundly dissatisfied with the state of the nation, i.e. with the policies pursued by the Obama Administration since 2009. In short, the President’s personal popularity is of no particular political significance."

Trump won because college-educated Americans are out of touch - "the attempt to make Trump’s victory about racism appears to be at odds with what actually happened on Election Day. Consider the following facts. Twenty-nine percent of Latinos voted for Trump, per exit polls. Remarkably, despite the near-ubiquitous narrative that Trump would have deep problems with this demographic given his comments and position on immigration, this was a higher percentage of those who voted for GOP nominee Mitt Romney in 2012. Meanwhile, African Americans did not turn out to vote against Trump. In fact, Trump received a higher percentage of African American votes than Romney did... The most important divide in this election was not between whites and non-whites. It was between those who are often referred to as “educated” voters and those who are described as “working class” voters. The reality is that six in 10 Americans do not have a college degree, and they elected Donald Trump... those with college degrees — again, with some significant exceptions — don’t necessarily know philosophy or theology. And they have especially paltry knowledge about the foundational role that different philosophical or theological claims play in public thought compared with what is common to college campuses. In my experience, many professors and college students don’t even realize that their views on political issues rely on a particular philosophical or theological stance... Higher education in the United States, after all, is woefully monolithic in its range of worldviews. In 2014, some 60 percent of college professors identified as either “liberal” or “far-left,” an increase from 42 percent identifying as such in 1990. And while liberal college professors outnumber conservatives 5-to-1, conservatives are considerably more common within the general public... While some of the political differences between educated and working-class voters is based on a dispute over hard facts, the much broader and more foundational disagreements are about norms and values... a reduction of all disagreement to racism, bigotry and ignorance — in addition to being wrong about its primary source — will simply make the disagreement far more personal, entrenched and vitriolic. And it won’t make liberal values more persuasive to the less educated, as Trump victory demonstrates"

What This Means, How This Happened, What To Do Now - "you reach a somewhat fatalistic conclusion about Trump supporters. You can’t persuade them, because they’re racists, and racism is an irrational feeling. Instead, you fight them, by mocking them, and trying to turn out your own base. By treating Trump’s support as largely the product of racism, one gives up on any attempt to actually appeal to Trump voters’ concerns and interests, since racism is not an interest worth appealing to. This was what Democrats did. This was a campaign of mockery: Trump voters were treated with disdain. Hillary Clinton dismissed huge swaths of them as a “basket of deplorables.” To be a Trump supporter was to be dumb, a redneck, a misogynist... There are facts that complicate the simple “racist deplorables” explanation. As Nate Cohn of The New York Times noted, “Clinton suffered her biggest losses in the places where Obama was strongest among white voters,” meaning that this was “not a simple racism story”... running Hillary Clinton for president was never a very good idea. Running Clinton against Donald Trump was an especially bad idea, because all of Clinton’s weaknesses as a candidate played to all of Trump’s strengths. Clinton gave Trump precisely the kind of fodder (mini-scandals, shady dealings, etc.) on which his bombast thrives. She also happens to be a very poor campaigner, and a complacent one. The weakness was obvious even in the differing campaign slogans. “I’m With Her” is about the interests of the candidate. “Make America Great Again” is about the voters. Let’s learn an important lesson here: do not run a widely-despised ruling-class candidate who has open contempt for the white working class. That is a recipe for electoral catastrophe... We need something that has what Obama had: inspiration, hope. It was joked that Hillary Clinton’s campaign slogan was “No you can’t.” That’s no good. Trump inspires people. He may inspire people by appealing to their nastiest, most inhuman and unneighborly instincts. But he inspires them. We have to have an agenda that gets people excited. It can’t be like trying to make people eat their vegetables. “You’ll vote for me and you’ll like it, because you have no alternative” is not an effective way to get votes"

An Open Letter to My Friends on the Left… about Donald Trump’s Hair, Unfortunately - "What scares you about Trump is that he will get his hands on the levers of power — levers that you yourselves constructed, over the protests of libertarians and old-style conservatives. For years we who are not of the left put up with the taunts: Isn’t the right wing crazy? How silly to be afraid of the government! How unfair to think of federal agents as jack-booted thugs! To worry about black helicopters and FEMA camps and Jade Helm! And now just maybe the jackboot is on the other foot... In a democracy, progressives’ second goal, populating the government, depends on one of two things. Either the oppressed must be the most numerous — unlikely for long in a democracy — or else a coalition must be built consisting of the oppressed and their sympathizers."

Trump Gives Victory Speech, Liberals Rediscover Appeal of Limited Government - "the left is interested in limited government again. Would have been nice to have them with us during Obama's eight years in office, but we'll take what we can get, I guess."

Dear Democrats, Read This If You Do Not Understand Why Trump Won - "Wikileaks has a 10-year record of never releasing a single falsified document, and is not connected to Russia. Everything they released were the actual e-mails of Hillary Clinton and her campaign staff... In an attempt to inform my friends, family, and followers I posted dozens if not hundreds of Wikileaks e-mails, and tweeted alt-right news just as much as I did liberal news. I did this because most of my followers are liberals, and I realized they were all living in an echo chamber on social media where they were not being exposed to differing opinions or news. I was mostly rejected by liberals for doing this, they didn’t understand why I was sharing things that made them uncomfortable, but now they know why. Ironically, I got far more support from Trump supporters for trying to tell Democrats the truth... While you weren’t paying attention, Trump is actually a former Democrat. If you study his actual values he has far more in common with traditional moderate or liberal values than he does a traditional conservative. In fact, Trump may even be more liberal than Hillary Clinton on several issues. The media prevented any kind of discussion on values, and instead focused on rhetoric and propaganda... politically he’s actually a New York Democrat in Republican clothing (this is why the Republican establishment rejected him). You also need to consider Donald Trump just overthrew a group of political elites who have been ruling this country for decades. He just beat the political establishment singlehandedly. No matter what you think about him personally, he just accomplished something historic to become our President. At the end of the day, this is an opportunity to learn and grow and consider another world view. This is a wakeup call to get out of safe spaces, politically correct thinking, shatter echo chambers, and challenge yourself to consider the other side of the fence. This is an opportunity to reach out and truly learn to understand each other."

Research finds women feel happy when their husband or partner is upset - Telegraph - "The detailed study found that wives or girlfriends were pleased when their partner showed emotion because they believed it demonstrated a healthy relationship. The survey, carried out by Harvard Medical School, also found that when men realised their wife was angry, the women reported being happier, although the men were not. It revealed women most likely enjoyed spotting when their partner was dissatisfied because it showed his strong “engagement” or “investment” in their time together... “This is consistent with what is known about the dissatisfaction women often experience when their male partner becomes emotionally withdrawn and disengaged in response to conflict”... “Women’s satisfaction was more strongly related to the perception that their partners were trying to understand their negative emotions than to men’s actual accuracy in reading those emotions.”"
The article is Eye of the beholder: the individual and dyadic contributions of empathic accuracy and perceived empathic effort to relationship satisfaction.

Why I am Pessimistic about Racial-Religious Harmony in Singapore - Case Studies

Exhibit A:

A: Bloody scenes as Muslim Shi'ites beat and mutilate themselves to celebrate Ashura | Daily Mail Online

Warning - gruesome images.

A majority of Muslims worldwide don't subscribe to this ritual.

B: There's no basis for this at all in Islam. And yet many are calling this practice 'islamic' which therefore means it's one of those smearing campaigns yet again

Me: Shias are Muslim too

B: Yeah right. And you're using dailymail as your go-to reference. Lol

Me: Hitting one’s body in grief [Ed: This is from Shia Pen, whose "sole goal is to refute the false propaganda against Shia and the teachings of Islam". This link looks at what the Qur'an and Sunnahs say about hitting oneself, which Shiites use to justify hitting themselves during the Mourning of Muharram]

B: Islamic practices are those that are premised in the Quran and Hadith or the prophet's traditions. Not from any others. Strange but are we supposed to believe what Islamic and non Islamic is about based on those who never read the Quran, are not practising Muslims or even study the prophet's tradition. This is certainly a smearing campaign

Me: There are other Shia forums talking about it. Are Shias smearing themselves?

B: And A - stop posting these kinds of fabrications. You're not helping much but are creating confusion amongst those who are lazy to read and do research

Me: Lol

A: One thing's for sure - self-mutilation is not Islam because as B mentioned, it's not sanctioned in any Quranic verse/Hadith, and none of the Messengers/Prophets had practiced it.

C: It's is best not to question the state of someone's Islam. The witnessing of the shahadah and the belief in it is enough to make someone a Muslim.

If or not he is a good Muslim or how far the deviation is is altogether another matter. The Shia are varied and the theology equally varied, many still falling squarely among the ahli shahadah despite not being among the mainstream. That in no way discounts that some of the Shia have deviated far too much so much so that it has invalidated their shahadah. This however requires careful analysis. Responsible Sunni traditional scholarship has acknowledged this wide variation among the Shia and are careful to issue a blanket ruling.

I think you should do your research on the Shia before you make any accusations.

However it is clear that this action has no basis in Islam

B: Yes there are different interpretations. And to fan this whole anti Islam and anti Muslim feelings, I think Gabriel should be taken to task by the authorities. He's insinuating something here

Me: And this is why Singaporeans don't want to talk about race and religion. Because even talking about the diversity of Islam gets you

B: Because you're not a credible person to be talking about islam

C: Gabriel stop sticking your nose in where it's not wanted. It's pretty rich of you to lecture us on our religion. You are not having a conversation about Islam, you wish to lecture Muslims on Islam so please you have no authority to do so. This is not a conversation of sharing and understanding. And I've seen your posts in the past, you hide behind civility but you intend malice.

B I agree with you on Gabriel's attitude but let's but surgical abt it. Do not fall into injustice in trying to uphold justice.

A: I have to agree with C about Gabriel's tone. a little humility will go a long way..


Exhibit B:

Wake Up, Singapore posts an article: Saudi woman pictured not wearing hijab faces calls for her execution | The Independent

Caption: "Some Saudis care more about her clothing than her life."


Sean Bautista: A big fuck you to the admin of this page. You're just inciting more hatred against Islam. Doesn't matter where you stand or your opinions but just let them be! This doesn't concern you or any Singaporeans whatsoever. Fuck you again. There I said it.
(30 likes as of the time I write this)

Abu Maysarah Al Makani: 😂bro i dnt condone swearing in public but u said what i was thinking..#mangkukadminla

Wake Up, Singapore: And what exactly are you gonna sue us for? If they really have nothing to do with Islam and it's practioners, then why get so worked up?

Haha, you amuse me. When we post about the Rohingyas or Palestinians, who also have, as you put it, 'nothing to do with Singapore,' you don't say anything.

When we call out Saudi's barbarism, you get your knickers in a twist.

Grow a thicker hide la brother..

Abu Maysarah Al Makani: Take this post down or face the authority! For stirring religious hate amongst singaporeans. I promise u if u dnt, this post will go viral amd it will reach the media. Police report will be made against u.

Shukri Shukri: Walauwei i used to like this page untill few mins ago yall strt calling others barbaric and have no respect for other religion.

Affandi Tahugoreng: You are rude.

Khai CT Monstar: i'm unliking this page

Hairi Asuka: Fucked up. Unlike liao. Bai.


Exhibit C would've been a thread where a few people reacted to critique of racial relations in Singapore with comments along the lines of how talking about this was disrupting racial harmony, but I can't find it.

This is not an uncommon occurence, however.

Close enough is:

Recent Posts in Atheism -

"It's just the Singapore way, stemming from traditional family beliefs that one should not talk about things taboo.

The best way to have racial harmony is to not raise sensitive issues or debates."

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Links - 4th December 2016

Telegram bot that tells you bus timings : singapore - "I create a bot that gives you the nearest bus stops as well as bus timings just by sending your location!"
This beats the bus apps

The Crown’s portrayal of history is an insult to my generation’s struggles | Harry Leslie Smith | Opinion | The Guardian - "I am angry that Netflix has spent $130m (£105m) on the 10-part series The Crown. This is a biopic concerning the marriage of Queen Elizabeth when she was still a princess in 1947, followed by her coronation in 1953. Unfortunately, The Crown views postwar Britain from the perspective of our sovereign and all who inhabited her world. This does an enormous disservice to the epoch, because it was a time when a socialist tide raised all boats. History was literally being made from the bottom up because, while Princess Elizabeth was being fitted for her wedding dress, ordinary Britons were dismantling a thousand years of feudal mentality through the creation of the welfare state. We’ve seen this approach before. Nothing better illustrates TV’s lush treacle homage to the landed gentry than Downton Abbey, a drama that ran for six series as a parlour-room interpretation of historical moments that shaped Britain at the turn of the 20th century. But Downton has not been the exception to the rule, rather a template used by TV and movie producers to crush the truth from history and make the entitled the heroes of narratives about our nation’s collective past."
This is like being upset Doctor Strange doesn't feature the perspective of ordinary Nepalis
Comment: "And there have been no tv series or movies EVER on the the ordinary joe, the worker, the plight of the down trodden? If you don't want to watch a tv series about the wealthy ruling class, don't watch Downton Abbey or The Crown, watch Billy Elliot, Brassed Off, How Green Was My Valley, Call the Midwife, Our Friends in the North, Grange Hill."

A woman ‘calling for jihad’ was invited on a German talk show

'Ferguson Effect' is a plausible reason for spike in violent US crime, study says - "A new justice department-funded study concludes that a version of the so-called “Ferguson Effect” is a “plausible” explanation for the spike in violent crime seen in most of the country’s largest cities in 2015... The new research cuts against months of statements from Obama administration officials denying that there is any evidence for a Ferguson Effect, a suggested link between protests over police killings of black Americans and an increase in crime and murder... Rosenfeld explores an alternative version of the Ferguson Effect, in which “longstanding grievances and discontent with policing in African American communities” are “activated” by controversial incidents of police violence, and then “chronic discontent erupts into violence”... This idea, which is not new in the fields of criminology or sociology, holds that the emergence of “honor codes”, for example ones which admonish “snitching” and promote informal resolutions to conflict, can drive violent crime. “Predatory violence increases because offenders believe victims and witnesses will not contact the police,” Rosenfeld said. Phillip Atiba Goff, a leading researcher on racial bias in policing and the president of the Center for Policing Equity, told the Guardian in April that it would a “reasonable hypothesis” to suggest “the decay in police legitimacy is harming both police morale and community morale”. Rosenfeld notes that 10 cities with relatively large African American populations accounted for two-thirds of the increase in homicides, which would be expected if the spike represented a crisis of confidence endemic to black communities... A study of Baltimore’s dramatic homicide spike found a close correlation between drops in some proactive policing and a rise in violence. Researchers dubbed this the Freddie Gray effect. An analysis of recent Chicago police and crime data by FiveThirtyEight found a similar link"

Murder Rate Spike Could Be 'Ferguson Effect,' DOJ Study Says - "Rosenfeld says "some version." That's because people disagree about what that effect is. It could be about police holding back, afraid they'll be criticized later for what they see as doing their job. Or you could look at it from the opposite point of view: that it's a matter of citizens — especially black people — losing faith in local cops... Rosenfeld says he wants to see more detailed statistics. For instance, he wants to see if the month-by-month arrest records show the police holding back. The problem is, the FBI is painfully slow about releasing detailed national numbers. We may not get a complete view of the Ferguson effect until this fall — a full two years after Ferguson itself."

Is There a ‘Ferguson Effect’? - The New York Times - "The sociologist Stephen Morgan. Working with a researcher named Joel Pally, he tracked reported crimes and arrests in Baltimore from before the 2014 uprising in Ferguson until well after the 2015 Baltimore protests over the death in police custody of Freddie Gray. Professor Morgan found that in the eight months after Ferguson, arrests did in fact decline in Baltimore. The police didn’t stop arresting people for serious offenses, but there were fewer arrests for things like vandalism and prostitution. There was even a drop-off in arrests for driving violations. This is consistent with Ms. Mac Donald’s idea that broken-windows policing suffered as law enforcement came under heightened scrutiny. Against Ms. Mac Donald’s idea, however, was the fact that crime rates didn’t budge. After the Freddie Gray protests, it was a different story... By itself, scrutiny of police departments doesn’t seem to move the needle when it comes to crime — contrary to the Ferguson effect thesis. On the other hand, when departments were required to alter their policies, signifying stronger public concern, crime was higher (temporarily) and officers spoke of working in a low-morale environment"

The Ferguson effect - "A 2005 study of de-policing after the anti-cop riots in Cincinnati in 2001 by University of Washington economist Lan Shi, for example, found a significant increase in felony crime caused by the drop-off in officer engagement."

Every Republican Presidential Candidate Is Hitler - "“Except for Adolf Hitler's extermination of the Jewish people, the American bombardment of defenseless peasants in Indochina is the most barbaric act of modern times.” That quote didn’t come from some Soviet hack coughing up copy for Moscow, but from Democratic presidential candidate George McGovern. (Some years later, McGovern would compare the Communist massacres in Cambodia to the Holocaust and call for some of that barbaric military intervention.)... Even though Goldwater had been an early NAACP member, NAACP leader Roy Wilkins warned, "Those who say that the doctrine of ultra-conservatism offers no menace should remember that a man come out of the beer halls of Munich and rallied the forces of rightism in Germany. All the same elements are there in San Francisco now." The NAACP accused Goldwater of appealing to “fear and bigotry”. Martin Luther King said, “We see danger signs of Hitlerism in the candidacy of Mr. Goldwater.”... Goldwater was Hitler. Nixon was Hitler. Reagan was Hitler. Bush was Hitler. None of the latter three men declared the Fourth Reich, made themselves dictators for life and ran concentration camps. But the Big Lie retroactively rewrites the past by claiming that last decade’s Hitler was a decent moderate while the latest Republican Hitler is a terrifying monster. Goldwater, Nixon and Reagan were all resurrected as moderate contrasts to each other and then to Bush. The process of recreating Bush as a moderate has already begun. And so each Republican makes the electoral journey from Hitler to a political moderate whom a latter generation of liberals mourns while complaining that this latest Republican really is Hitler."

Jim Howard's answer to Why are people comparing Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler? - Quora - "One of Hitler's men shot my Dad! As far as I'm concerned equating any US politician with Hitler is holocaust denial . Most 'your guy is Hitler' comes from the Democrats, which is ironic when you think about it. After all, it's the Democrats who think that the government doesn't have enough power over individuals and businesses. And new this year, many Democrats are at last open socialists. Like Hitler"

How to View a List of Extensions Installed in All Your Browsers - "Installing extensions in web browsers can provide some very useful features. However, if you install a lot of extensions in multiple browsers, you might forget which you installed in which. We have an easy solution if you use Chrome, Firefox, and/or Internet Explorer."

Commentary: Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s slam of Trump does the nation no favors - "Those on the left who are tempted to give Ginsburg a pass on her comments should ask themselves if they would want Justice Samuel Alito to recuse himself in a Clinton v. Trump case if he went on Fox News and said he would move to Britain if Hillary Clinton were elected, or if he called her “Crooked Hillary.” Ironically, Ginsburg has taken a strong position that states can impose codes of conduct on judicial candidates to stop them from making statements that might raise questions about their impartiality. She has also found due process violations when judges serve on cases in which they have an apparent conflict of interest. What about due process rights here?"

Germany's Migrant Rape Crisis Spirals out of Control - "German authorities have repeatedly been accused of underreporting the true scale of the crime problem in the country. For example, up to 90% of the sex crimes committed in Germany in 2014 do not appear in the official statistics, according to André Schulz, the head of the Association of Criminal Police (Bund Deutscher Kriminalbeamter, BDK)."

Lawyer who focused on molest victim's breast size rapped by judge

The Best Restaurants in Lima Are Putting Culture on the Plate - "In 2015, Lima’s international airport welcomed a whopping 4.22 million international visitors, more than any other Latin American hub and double the figure of its closest competitor, Mexico City, according to MasterCard’s latest Global Destination Index (PDF). That number represented a 7 percent year-on-year rise and put it on the list of the top 10 fastest-growing tourism destinations worldwide since 2009. Think all those newcomers were on their way to Machu Picchu? A separate study by the UN World Tourism Organization claims that at least 42 percent of them were coming, first and foremost, to eat"

PETA Killed A Little Girl's Dog, And Her Family Wants Them To Pay. A Lot. - "Among the allegations is that Maya’s death fits with the group’s longstanding practice “to kill lost or stray pets” instead of finding them homes or returning them to their owners — a claim that is bolstered by PETA’s self-reported figures filed with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services."

China passes restrictive new film law - "China has passed a restrictive and long-discussed film law on Monday (Nov 7) banning content deemed harmful to the “dignity, honour and interests” of the People’s Republic and encouraging the promotion of “socialist core values”... Films must not “violate the country’s religious policies, spread cults, or superstitions”, insult or slander people"

Qing dynasty textbook shows how Chinese people tried to learn English 150 years ago - "If you think learning Chinese is hard now, how about mastering English pronunciation via Chinese characters in the mid-19th century?... The book contains helpful phrases such as, "You want cheap go buy other man," "Tomorrow I give you answer" and "Very much this silk." Along with words of wisdom like, "Don't stop half way and fail" and "Don't answer at random."
So the "racist" American "stereotypes" about Chinese people are actually true?

Giant Sucking Sound? That's Singapore Retail - "With a vacancy rate of 8.4 percent, shopping spaces are already the emptiest in almost a decade. And that's with e-commerce accounting for just 2 percent of total sales. Considering that 20 percent of China's retail is already online, industry forecasts of 7 percent e-commerce penetration in Singapore by 2025 may be a "gross underestimation," says Raghav Kapoor, CEO of Smartkarma, a research website... If an Amazon-Alibaba war breaks out in earnest, Singapore's warehouses might be a more interesting investment option than deserted stores."

Brazilian sex theme park set to open in 2018: Erotikaland - "Other bizarre parks around the world include BonBon-Land in Denmark, an X-rated theme park where you can ride on the Fart Dog Switchback, the Rubbish Dump and the Skid Mark roller-coaster, Pedroland, in South Carolina, based on a 1950s-era ethnic stereotype and The Holy Land Experience in Florida, which is based on the life and times of Jesus Christ."

In Our Time, Penicillin

BBC Radio 4 - In Our Time, Penicillin

"He did do some trials on some of his colleagues at St Mary's. He grew the mold in liquid culture. He got one of his colleagues to eat some crud, some mold... Somebody who had a sore throat, it didn't really help them. Same person had some mold juice instilled in their nose when they had sinusitis...

The drug itself, penicillin, is not new. It's been around for millions, probably hundreds of millions of years in the soil. Because the molds protect themselves with it. And in fact you find resistance to penicillin in the most unlikely places... in corpses before Columbus in the New World... there's penicillin all around us...

In Asia, the idea of you could prevent the sex worker carrying gonorrhea. They would then give it to the soldier who would then be debilitated. Unfortunately what they did was they bred penicillin resistant gonorrhea which then disseminated...

Some of them do bizarre things. They change their own mutation rate. Their as in their own DNA. Produce hundreds or thousands of strange errors which normally wouldn't survive in nature but some of those manage to knock off the antibiotic so they can survive and the others die. And some even cut great sections out of their DNA, great chunks of DNA just thrown away, because that allows them to copy themselves more quickly. Now without penicillin, they would never survive. So that generally speaking, most bacteria are penicilin sensitive. But once you start using the antibiotic it's pretty certain that you're going to get resistance. We still have possibly one antibiotic which everything is more or less susceptible to, with very few exceptions. But now we realise the dangers. People are using these last ditch antibiotics much much more cautiously than they did before. And we're really almost at the end of that road of drug development, which is a real worry...

If you look at the number of companies over the last 30 years that are investing and researching in antibiotics, it's been dwindling. The number of companies involved in antibiotic research has dropped by 20-25% each decade for the last 3 decade. The financial drivers as you say are quite clear. For antibiotics you produce a medicine and I guess we're used to having antibiotics cheap. We're used to be able to pick up antibiotics for pence. You have a therapy which lasts for maybe a week or couple of weeks. Whereas the company is much more interested in having a drug which they can sell for a lifetime. It's a bit like... Starbucks. What would encourage Starbucks to make a coffee you would drink... for a week and would stop needing to drink Starbucks ever again in your life?...

drugs for hypertension, drugs for diabetes, companies invest a lot in that sort of area. So I think there need to be real financial drivers set up for the companies to encourage development...

MRSA... which spread like wildfire from a single mutation in Germany across Europe in just a few years. Now we know exactly what's going on there, and ironically enough it's begin to drop in frequency. Because of a new antibiotic? No. Because people now wash their hands... So maybe the simpler answers will be part of the solution"

Friday, December 02, 2016

Links - 2nd December 2016

Sex, violence, and hormones - "Why are we so comfortable with assuming that other animals are controlled by their hormones whereas humans are not? The prevailing view is that human behavior is regulated by higher cognitive processes. Reason cools the blood, allowing us to take responsibility for our actions. This is an ancient philosophical formula that was most explicitly developed by French Philosopher Rene Descartes (1596-1650). Yet, even Descartes did not believe the rational soul was always in charge and accepted that there are times when humans are ruled by their passions.Evidence that human behavior is partly governed by hormones is mainly restricted to correlations, which are not the same as causes. At least one experiment found that large doses of testosterone increased aggression but only for a small proportion of men. Young men who use anabolic steroids - a synthetic version of testosterone - are also more likely to be involved in violent crime. Taken together, such findings imply that high levels of testosterone can cause aggression in at least some men. Other evidence points in the same direction... When men divorce and begin dating again, their testosterone level rises, just as it does for male robins in the breeding season. What is more, their involvement in violent crime increases. This is at least partly due to an altered lifestyle with more time spent staying out late at night in clubs and bars where single women are encountered. Increased alcohol consumption is a complicating factor as this clouds reason and impairs judgment. As correlations go, the link between testosterone and violent crime is arguably as compelling as the link between testosterone and mating aggression for robins and other animals. Indeed, one can argue that most violent crimes occur because of reproductive competition (e.g., male-male assaults and homicides, domestic violence)."

JK Rowling reveals vile anti-English tweets from Scottish nationalists

The Bigger Your Brain, the Longer Your Yawn - "Gallup proposed what has become known as the thermoregulatory theory of yawning. It holds that opening our jaws and sucking in air cools the brain, something other labs have found support for. Yawning might also kick the brain out of its so-called default mode—a sort of background humming-along state—and into a paying-attention state by increasing the circulation of cerebrospinal fluid, a 2014 paper found."

Mafia criminals' income 'boosted by education' - "The University of Essex study of 712 Italian-American mafia members in the 1960s showed their income had risen by 7.5-8.5% per extra year of education.
Those involved in complex crimes such as charging exorbitant rates for loans or extortion saw three times the boost of those who committed violent crimes."

Essex girls rise to delete term from dictionary - "It is a phrase synonymous with 1990s ladette culture, used to define brash party girls in one part of England. And that is why two Essex women have launched a campaign to remove the 'rude and stereotypical' term "Essex girl" from the Oxford English Dictionary. Juliet Thomas and Natasha Sawkins want their proud peers to post their success under #IAmAnEssexGirl and sign their petition to have the term scrubbed. But, a dictionary spokeswoman said, "nothing is ever taken out of the OED". "It's a historical dictionary," she told the BBC. "Definitions can change, but an entry will never come out." The dictionary defines Essex girl as: "Essex girl n. [after Essex man n.] Brit. derogatory a contemptuous term applied (usu. joc.) to a type of young woman, supposedly to be found in and around Essex, and variously characterized as unintelligent, promiscuous, and materialistic." The campaigners were further peeved by a Collins definition that added: "devoid of taste"."
Too bad they aren't shitlords like Merriam-Webster. Maybe SJWs didn't read 1984

The Strange History Of How A Gene Was Named "Sonic Hedgehog"

These Scientific Names Were Chosen Purely To Insult Certain People

Science Explains Why Superman’s Glasses Actually Work As A Disguise - "Researchers at the University of York recently conducted a study about the effect that glasses have when it comes to facial recognition, and while the thinking behind the experiment was driven by important world matters like border control security, they seemingly inadvertently showed that Clark Kent's disguise is somewhat plausible"

Columbia U. Students Tear Down Posters Advertising Christina Hoff Sommers Visit - "Posters advertising Sommers' visit were torn down in buildings across campus, according to Toni Airaksinen, a reporter for Campus Reform and student at Columbia-affiliated Barnard College. Airaksinen wrote on Twitter that only one of about 20 posters survived for a full day... if Columbia's leftist-students are so afraid of alternative perspectives, they can't have very much confidence in the persuasiveness of their own beliefs."

Don't know the difference between emoji and emoticons? Let me explain - "Unlike emoticons, emoji are actual pictures, of everything from a set of painted nails (💅) to a slightly whimsical ghost (👻). And where emoticons were invented to portray emotion in environments where nothing but basic text is available, emoji are actually extensions to the character set used by most operating systems today, Unicode... To complicate matters, some emoji are also emoticons"

Is it Possible to be Vegan in India? - "As a person who also loves to cook and serve people, I understand the joy that comes from serving guests. So to me, it is rude and difficult in some senses to turn down their hospitality when I am in their home. Of course I make sure that they serve me veg food (verses non veg food), which is never a problem, and many people are even shocked and curious to meet a western vegetarian. But when it comes to dairy, there is sometimes cream in the dish, or ghee (Indian clarified butter), and it is difficult to explain why I do not eat these ingredients, especially if there is a language barrier involved. In India, milk is sacred and people here really do not understand why I would not eat this sacred food... my saving grace in this country is that in India pure vegetarian food means no eggs, so I figure a little milk or ghee here or there won’t kill me"

‘Feminist’ Trudeau under attack for attending gender-segregated event at Ottawa mosque - "Three female MPs accompanied Trudeau during his brief remarks, though they had to arrive by a side door and stand with their heads covered. They did not address the mosque... recent surveys indicate about two of every three mosques separate men from women, but that is up from a decade ago when only about half did... he made no mention of LGBT rights nor did he make any mention of gender equality."

You can be fined for not calling people ‘ze’ or ‘hir,’ if that’s the pronoun they demand that you use - "people can basically force us — on pain of massive legal liability — to say what they want us to say, whether or not we want to endorse the political message associated with that term, and whether or not we think it’s a lie... We can’t be required to even display a license plate that says “Live Free or Die” on our car, if we object to the message; that’s what the court held in Wooley v. Maynard (1978). But New York is requiring people to actually say words that convey a message of approval of the view that gender is a matter of self-perception rather than anatomy, and that, as to “ze,” were deliberately created to convey that a message. What’s more, according to the City, “refusal to use a transgender employee’s preferred name, pronoun, or title may constitute unlawful gender-based harassment.” The label “harassment” is important here because harassment law requires employers and businesses to prevent harassment by co-workers and patrons and not just by themselves or their own employees... Feel uncomfortable about being forced to use terms that express social status views (“Milord”) or religious views (“Your Holiness”) that you may not endorse? Well, you should feel uncomfortable about people being forced to use “ze,” which expresses a view about gender that they might not endorse. And, more broadly, I think we should all feel uncomfortable about government regulators forcing people to say things that convey and support the government’s ideology about gender."
When Brietbart covered this, people dismissed it. The Washington Post is not so easily ignored

Study says women are worse drivers, get in more car crashes despite driving less than men - "Researchers at the University of Michigan analyzed 6.5 million car crashes in the U.S. between 1998 and 2007. Female drivers were found to be involved in 68.1 percent of all crashes, according to The Daily Mail. The results are especially surprising given that men were found to drive 60 percent of the time, while women only 40 percent. In other words, women got in more accidents despite driving less than the opposite sex... female-to-female accidents made up 20.5 percent of all crashes, much higher than expected. Male-to-male crashes were lower than expected, at 31.9 percent, while male-to-female crashes were close to their predictions at 47.6 percent."

Australian students to be taught about 'male privilege' - "A state in Australia has launched an education programme designed to smash gender stereotypes and tackle the root causes of domestic violence. The "respectful relationship" curriculum will be mandatory in all schools in Victoria from next year. Students will explore issues around social inequality, gender-based violence and male privilege. However, a report on a 2015 pilot trial accused it of presenting all men as "bad" and all women as "victims". Pay inequality, anger management, sexual orientation and the dangers of pornography will be among the topics explored by students in the programme, costing A$21.8m (£13.5m; $16.5m)...Jeremy Sammut, a senior research fellow at the Centre for Independent Studies, a libertarian think tank, told The Australian newspaper that it amounted to "taxpayer-funded indoctrination" of children. "The idea behind this programme - that all men are latent abusers by nature of the 'discourse' - is an idea that only cloistered feminist academics could love," Dr Sammut said. "A lot of evidence suggests that like child abuse, domestic violence is a by-product of social dysfunction: welfare, drugs, family breakdown." The royal commission that recommended education as the key measure for preventing future family violence found that 25% of victims of family violence are men. Critics argue that point is often overlooked."
Amusingly, some people think that male privilege is responsible for men being victims of domestic violence

Story of domestic violence against men is hidden, complicated and disputed - "Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said to Brisbane Times last month that she would be approaching Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull about launching a domestic violence awareness campaign that includes male victims. Ms Palaszczuk has also changed her language around domestic violence after hearing of the men it has impacted."

Man who drove into pedestrians shouting Allahu Akbar ‘was just singing along to rap music while buying pizza’ parents say

Student officially changes his personal pronoun to ‘His Majesty’ on campus roster - "top administrators at the University of Michigan Ann Arbor announced a new campus-wide policy that allows students to select their own “designated personal pronoun,” informing the campus community they are expected to adhere to those preferences... "I henceforth shall be referred to as: His Majesty, Grant Strobl. I encourage all U-M students to go onto Wolverine Access, and insert the identity of their dreams""

Washington Post: Dog Halloween Costumes 'Sexist' for Perpetuating Gender Norms

[SAGA] The Western Co (TWC) f**k up customer service & chase customer out - - "TLDR: TWC ownself send typo sms nv apologise. customer say wtf when realised cannot pay nets. the cashier took the f of the wtf personally then want to chase the customer out of the shop
such fk up attitude. they shd be boycotted!"

The Western Co. threatened to SUE food blogger -

S’porean man who turned himself into a URL points out licence peculiarity of The Western Co. - "In the latest turn of events involving The Western Co. (TWC), food blogger Seth Lui of published an article, “The Western Co: Dishonest or Misunderstood? Don’t Believe Everything The Owner Says”, recounting his experience of how TWC did not pay for its advertorial on his website... more interestingly, Lui pointed out some discrepancies with TWC’s NEA licence at its now-defunct 30 Foch Road premises...The address on the license corroborates with The Western. Co’s previous location, but it was registered as a “Mixed Vegetable Rice Stall” instead of the supposed western stall TWC was operating. According to Lui’s post, the company the licence was issued to — Rendevous Holding Pte. Ltd — is not The Western Co.’s alleged parent company (Appendix K Investments LLP)... Lui also pointed out that TWC had announced it was closing “for good” in September 2016 with TWC “vehemently insisting they weren’t relocating”.He then questioned how TWC had acquired an NEA licence for its new Tyrwhitt Road premises in such a short time"

The Western Co. issues apology statement, appoints social media agency, promptly hides post from its Facebook page - "If you happened to be online on Monday, you might have heard of an establishment called The Western Co., and perhaps also of the way it mishandles customer feedback (using a cocktail of sarcastic replies, deleting comments and banning users, and even posting statuses insulting them). Around 10.20pm Monday, the now-embattled business owners took to their otherwise-silent Facebook page (apart from actively deleting comments and banning users from posting comments)... the number of comments and people that have been deleted and who have been banned from the company’s page has resulted in people finding and befriending one another"

Looks like The Western Co. is latest S’pore eatery on its way to social media destruction - "it looks like they have a history of passive-aggressiveness against their customers on their own Facebook page as well... We’re pretty sure this is a classic example of how not to run a food establishment’s social media presence."

I Dreamed I Saw Old Socrates

I Dreamed I Saw Old Socrates | Darkness of His Dreams

I dreamed I saw old Socrates
Walking Athens after dark.
No people to harass, no questions to ask,
No great debates on which to embark.

His face it looked so serene,
As he contemplated truth.
Is this the man they put to death
For corruption of the youth?

The men in charge, to keep their jobs,
Don’t want us thinking for ourselves.
Its sheep they need, easier to lead,
Not the depth to which wisdom delves.

Question every single authority,
Be certain only of what you do not know.
These men of Athens knew right then
This gadfly had to go.

I dreamed I saw old Socrates
Teaching with his last breath.
I stood among his crowd of friends
As he bravely met his death.

I awoke in tears of anger
At the injustice that had been done.
But I could not define what “justice” was,
And I knew that old Socrates had won.

Thursday, December 01, 2016

Links - 1st December 2016

REFUSED! - INTERPOL Rejects Najib's 'Red Notice' Request Against Sarawak Report - "Crushingly, Jurgen Stock added that member countries were further advised not to use Interpol’s channels in this matter and requested them to remove all data from their databases as well – it is a telling indication that the organisation is of the opinion that their processes, which are designed to catch dangerous criminals, had been abused by Malaysia... Fair Trials had taken up the case as an example of what the NGO regards is a worrying trend on the part of certain oppressive regimes to abuse INTERPOL in order to clamp down on legitimate dissenters."

DON'T PANIC - Keep calm and

Toronto professor Jordan Peterson takes on gender-neutral pronouns - "University of Toronto psychology professor Jordan Peterson had enough of what he saw as a campus culture where "social justice warrior, left-wing radical political activists" ran rampant. In September he released a video lecture series taking aim at political correctness... At a free speech rally mid-October, he was drowned out by a white noise machine. Pushing and shoving broke out in the crowd. He says the lock on his office door was glued shut. At the same time, the University of Toronto said it had received complaints of threats against trans people on campus. His employers have warned that, while they support his right to academic freedom and free speech, he could run afoul of the Ontario Human Rights code and his faculty responsibilities should he refuse to use alternative pronouns when requested. They also said they have received complaints from students and faculty that his comments are "unacceptable, emotionally disturbing and painful" and have urged him to stop repeating them... "I've studied authoritarianism for a very long time - for 40 years - and they're started by people's attempts to control the ideological and linguistic territory," he told the BBC. "There's no way I'm going to use words made up by people who are doing that - not a chance." Dr Peterson is concerned proposed federal human rights legislation "will elevate into hate speech" his refusal to use alternative pronouns... terms like "gender identity' and "gender expression" are too broad, are the "propositions of radical social constructionists," and are being used to bully opponents into submission. "There's only two alternatives to that," he said. "One is silent slavery with all the repression and resentment that that will generate, and the other is outright conflict. Free speech is not just another value. It's the foundation of Western civilization.""

U of T professor attacks political correctness, says he refuses to use genderless pronouns - "Peterson told the National Post that he decided to make the video and go public with his views after receiving a memo from university HR outlining new mandatory anti-racist and anti-bias training. “That disturbs me because if someone asked me to take anti-bias training, I think I am agreeing that I am sufficiently racist or biased to need training,” he said in an interview. Peterson also said he doesn’t believe there is sufficient research to show these kind of HR practices, which he said may constitute “psychological intervention,” are effective. He said he is concerned the university is consulting groups like the Black Liberation Collective on campus policy matters, noting he respects their right to exist and protest, but questioning their credentials to offer expert opinion... he fears Bill C-16 could lead to legal action against legitimate discussion and research on gender and sexuality, including research on the “biological origins of gender.”... Peterson suggests the “overrepresentation of social justice warrior-type activists” in government may have impacted the tabling of legislation, noting also “our current Premier (Kathleen Wynne) is lesbian in her sexual preference.” He goes on to claim the LGBTI community “has become extraordinarily good at organizing themselves and has a fairly pronounced and very, very sophisticated radical fringe.”"

University of Toronto SJWs Hate Speech Exposed: Cassandra Williams & Smugglypuff - "A video of Lauren Southern being assaulted by a Social Justice Warrior went viral a few days ago... This is part of a larger effort orchestrated by the vice-president of university affairs, Cassandra Williams. She is the first trans person elected to an executive position at the University of Toronto and rose to that position by militarizing the on-campus LGBTQ community. Earlier this year, Williams fabricated a controversy in a debate against her opponent, Andy Edem. When Edem accidentally referred to the former Shawn Williams by the wrong pronoun, Williams pointed it out to him – for which Edem immediately apologized... The seemingly sincere apology wasn’t enough for Williams and this was her/his/ze/its response later on social media... When one of Williams’ cronies stole somebody’s cell phone, she blocked that woman from chasing down the perpetrator too"

Turkey transgender activist's death highlights rise in hate crimes - "Emirhan Deniz Çelebi, the director of SPoD, a national LGBT organisation based in Istanbul, joined other LGBT associations in condemning what they believe is deliberate silence by the country’s mainstream media in the wake of the activist’s death... Kader’s murder comes less than two weeks after the beheading of a gay Syrian refugee whose body was found not far from where Kader was discovered... “Since the coup-attempt, a number of my transgender friends have called me and talked about how they were discriminated against because of their ID Cards and appearance”"

I was reported for gender misconduct for calling myself handsome in class - "The teacher sat next to me on a bench outside the classroom and told me that I made a comment in class that upset someone. Consequently, I had been reported to the Gender-Based Misconduct Office... “Even if I agree with you, I obviously couldn’t say anything…” I had the impression that she was too scared to challenge Columbia’s extreme politically correct culture... This experience taught me one thing more than any other: the human toll of “triggered” culture is a serious matter. I cannot help but feel for those who are deeply embedded in it, or rely on it for food and shelter. Furthermore, by reporting my innocuous statement, serious matters like sexual harassment and assault are trivialized and victims end up neglected. That is unacceptable... I told friends in the class about the experience and they were shocked I had been reported. Later that week, in Chinese class when my teacher was having us use a new sentence structure to talk about things that make us upset, my sentence was: “I get upset when I get reported to Gender Misconduct by my classmates (OK, I may have used a little bit of English to get the full phrase out). I probably shouldn’t have done that but it was just too damn funny not to."

Former Amnesty International gender head Gita Sahgal accuses it of supporting terror groups - "It (Amnesty) gives space to Hamas supporters rather than secular and human rights voices from Palestine”

Don’t laugh: I have a serious reason for raising my cats gender-neutral - "The cats’ lives wouldn’t change, I reasoned, and it would help me learn to use plural pronouns for my friends, neighbors and colleagues who individually go by they, their and them. Even though using they, them and their as singular pronouns grates on many people because it’s grammatically incorrect, it seems to be the most popular solution to the question of how to identify people without requiring them to conform to the gender binary of female and male. It also just feels right to refer to people as they wish to be referred to... friends would ask me: How is your cat? “They’re better” or “The same. The vets don’t know what’s wrong with them,” I’d say. “Wait a minute—are they both sick?” people would reply, confused."
Comment: "This takes the meaning of crazy cat lady to whole new heights...."

Why women’s education doesn’t always improve equality - "Educated women in sexist nations are less likely to get married—and in a sad Catch-22, consequently are less likely to have children who can change their country’s attitudes"

Man stabbed with Legend of Zelda Master Sword in serious condition - "The ex-husband was taken to hospital following the altercation, but not before he, in true Zelda fashion, smashed a pot (a flower pot, over the head of Thompson)."

Gender equality? TV censors blur out male nipples in footage of traditional Javanese wedding - "Just when we thought it couldn’t get anymore ridiculous than when TV censors blurred out parts of Puteri Indonesia 2016 pageant contestants wearing the traditional Indonesian kebaya, it appears that men’s body parts are equally yucky and must be censored too."

Indonesian netizens shocked by "Doraemon" censorship on TV - "The following tweet from Twitter user Andika Tri Saputra features a screenshot of “Doraemon” playing on local channel RCTI in which the character Shizuka, who is a 9-year-old girl, has the bottom half of her swimsuit blurred out."

Tajuddin: Dr M, Jews working together, have same agenda - "Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad shares a common agenda with certain Jewish-controlled media, claims Umno supreme council member Datuk Seri Tajuddin Abdul Rahman"

Q'iswa Chaka - Wikipedia - "Q'iswa Chaka (Quechua q'iswa a rope of twisted dried maguey or ichhu, chaka bridge, "rope bridge", also spelled Keshwa Chaca, Keswachaka, Q'eshwachaka, Qeswachaka, Q'eswachaca, Q'eswachaka, Queshuachaca, Queswachaka), consisting of ropes made of grass and spanning the Apurimac River near Huinchiri, in Quehue District, Canas Province, Peru, is the last remaining Inca rope bridge"

PlayFlash 32bit :: Add-ons for Firefox - "Flash player plugin - unofficial xpi repack for 32bit browsers.
Use when official plugin installer is not suitable."

Men Who Do More Housework Have Less Sex - "married couples in which men take on a greater share of the dishes, laundry and other traditionally female chores had sex less often than average, which in this study was about five times a month. Yet couples in which men confined themselves largely to traditionally male chores such as yard work enjoyed sex more frequently than average. Taken to the extreme, men who performed all the traditionally female chores would have had sex 1.6 times less often than men who did none of them. The study authors, from the Juan March Institute in Madrid and the University of Washington, arrived at the correlation by crunching data from the National Survey of Families and Households (NFSH), which gathered survey information from 4,500 U.S. married couples. The researchers ruled out any kind of coercion on the part of the “manly” chore-performing husbands by looking at data from the same survey on sexual satisfaction: they found that women from households with more traditional divisions of labor felt no less happy with their sex lives than women in more gender-neutral ones"

Women believe men should take out bins and mow lawns - Telegraph - "The list of 'his 'n hers' chores emerged following a study of 5,000 adults into which sex is responsible for everyday jobs around the house. Women also ruled out getting things out of the loft, removing sticky lids from jars and unblocking the lavatory. Meanwhile men believe women's jobs include remembering birthdays and anniversaries, organising the social calendar and replacing the toilet roll when it runs out. A spokesman for, which carried out the survey, said: "There is a very clear divide between the chores men and women will do, but at least it shows that both sexes are responsible for the running of the household. "There seems to be a general trend that women are responsible for the day to day chores, such as keeping the house clean and tidy. "But men make sure things are fixed and in good working order. Neither sex is afraid of getting their hands dirty. "We're sure that in some households there will be a point where a man is forced to do a pink job, and a woman finds herself carrying out the odd blue job"

Column: Why millennial women don't want to call themselves feminists - "could it be that some women shun Clinton because of competitiveness? This phenomenon, in which women simultaneously hold other women to higher standards, and then penalize them for reaching those standards, often plagues highly successful women. We see this kind of thing all the time in academia, where female professors routinely get lower teaching ratings than their male colleagues, particularly from female students. But my reading of this phenomenon is more forgiving of millennials. I think their distrust actually represents an indictment of modern day feminism...
1. The current generation has rarely experienced institutionally and legally sanctioned sexism.
2. The term “feminism” has been hijacked by a minority of vocal extremists who have redefined it as “gender feminism,” claiming that gender is a patriarchal social construct created in order to oppress women.
3. “Feminist” has come to mean “careerist” — competing with men in the workplace on men’s terms.
This implies that stay-at-home mothers cannot be feminists and that women must put career ahead of family in order to compete. This phenomenon can be traced to a shameful chapter in second-wave feminism. Shulamith Firestone declared “Pregnancy is barbaric.” Ellen Willis admitted that “I saw having children as the great trap that completely took away your freedom.” Gloria Steinem described her mother as spiritually broken by giving up her career as a journalist to raise her children... today’s two-income family earns 75 percent more money than its single-income counterpart of a generation ago, but actually has less discretionary income once their fixed monthly bills are paid. This is because higher family incomes triggered a ferocious bidding war for housing and education among the middle class"

"Home" by Warsan Shire - "no one leaves home unless
home is the mouth of a shark
you only run for the border
when you see the whole city running as well"
economic migrants
do not exist

I accidentally slept with a Donald Trump supporter - "He said, “Hope you’re still not upset over politics LOL.” I explained that it’s hard for me to remain attracted to someone whose views are so different from mine, and who believes in bigotry and xenophobia—which sucked, because the sex was amazing. Then he said, “Not accepting other people’s beliefs is the definition of bigotry.” So apparently it was my fault"

'CU in the NT' is quite possibly the wildest tourism slogan ever - "There's something in the water in Australia's Northern Territory a.k.a. the NT. f you've ever had the pleasure of reading the always-entertaining NT News, or checked out the "fun" tourist activities on offer, you've probably figured out that Territorians have more of a rough (and sweary) vibe than other Australians."

Bryan Caplan on "Does parenting matter?"

Rationally Speaking | Official Podcast of New York City Skeptics - Current Episodes - RS144 - Bryan Caplan on "Does parenting matter?"

"If you go and take a look at the 1960s, which is the tail end of the baby boom, actually moms on average spent less time taking care of their kids than they do today, even though they had far more kids, even though they were less likely to have jobs outside the home and even though dads helped a lot less. Still back in those days moms were doing less...

Out of the people who do adopt, there is a lot of reason to think that in fact, there is evidence that if the adopted children is having trouble, the adopting parents put in extra for them or they compensate for whatever problems the adopted child might have. I'd say that there's very good evidence that adopted kids are treated very similarly to biological children. There's been stuff done on these things like, do adopted kids get a normal share in inheritance, and they do...

[The effects of parenting are] generally short run effects. To use a term that comes up a lot in this research, there’s “fade out” -- so while you can change your kid in the short run, over the long run they tend to go back to where they would've been if they've been raised by a very different family...

Here's the important thing to realize about all of these estimates of the effect of nature, the effect of nurture -- is that they include all effects, direct or indirect, as long as they actually are caused by being raised by one family or having certain genes. So for example if you go and find there is a genetic effect on income, this could mean that there's actually a gene for money making, but it could also mean that there's a gene for good looks and that good looks are rewarded in the market...

There's one very interesting study of church attendance that finds that by the time that you were in your mid-thirties there's no longer any effect of the family that raised you on how much you go to church...

There are a number of different measures of health that researchers looked at using these adoption or twin methods. The most objective one, of course, is how long you live, your lifespan. In that one a lot of our best evidence comes from Scandinavia because they've been keeping records on everybody for over a century. And the punch line there is it's very hard to see an effect of upbringing on how long you live...

How much your parents affect your obesity -- and that's one of the very strongest results, looks like parents do not change your adult weight. Being raised by a family of health nuts is not going to make you thinner. If your biological relatives are overweight, then you are likely to be overweight, and the fact that you are raised by a family that valued keeping very thin, that's not going to change your weight...

Why is it that the long run effect will be smaller than the short run effect? You might think the short run effects will all tend to add up into one big long run effect, but the main thing to remember is that as people get older, they gain more and more control over their own lives, and if something just doesn't feel right for them, something you've been sort of pushing on them that just doesn't resonate with them, then the older they get, the greater their opportunity is to do what they want rather than what you raised them to do...

One of the few things that actually you can get very good permanent results on, is if kids have sleeping problems. Because there is the Ferber method where you just let kids cry it out for a little while and then you don't immediately comfort them. So as you might guess, if kids immediately get attention whenever they cry, they cry a lot and they're bad sleepers. Experiments were done where some kids, you just do whatever you want, some kids get the Ferber method where they at least let them cry for five minutes before you go to them, other kids just let them cry it out, it doesn't matter how long it takes. This works, but not only does it work, once you get a kid on the right track of sleeping they generally don't stop sleeping again. And once they start sleeping then they aren't awake to go and want to get attention anymore. So that's one where as long as you do it for a good six months, even kids with pretty bad sleep problems can be fixed with this problem, fixed from parents’ point of view anyway...

Identical twins who were raised in different homes were more similar in their adult happiness than identical twins that were raised in the same home... there is a story that people told – it’s just a story but, my first two sons are identical twins, so it does resonate with me a bit. This story just says, that when they were raised together they naturally tried to differentiate themselves in an artificial way just to get their own niche: I'm the hard working twin, I'm the lazy twin. I'm the cool twin, stuff like that...

Tax records for this giant sample of twins. So you know exactly how much legal income they're reporting for many decades, and what he found on income was that when you're in your 20s, there we still do see this effect of upbringing on your income, but by the time you're in your 30s it goes away...

The resemblance between parent and child for divorce is highly genetic, maybe entirely genetic. You can actually see that the similarity of identical twins for whether or not they're divorced is much higher than fraternal twins, which is a smoking gun of a large genetic effect. And really if you go and read a bit about the effect of personality in general on divorce, it's nothing too surprising. People who are disagreeable and have low conscientiousness and who have bad attitudes, have high chances of getting divorced...

I am as your readers probably don't know, a long time libertarian, but I will say almost every book of libertarian political philosophy embarrasses me"
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