All entries by this author

Strict supervision

Jul 9th, 2020 12:23 pm | By

Another man bravely steps forward to tell JK Rowling what she should be doing instead of what she is doing.

Scrolling through J.K. Rowling’s Twitter page is a surreal experience. 

The Harry Potter author is currently celebrating the success of her new children’s book, The Ickabog, engaging her young fans by retweeting and praising their artwork. 

Well, it’s more that she’s taking the time and trouble to make a lot of her young fans extremely happy by retweeting and praising their artwork.

In between these adorable, enthusiastic retweets, Rowling will, randomly, offer her opinion about trans people. Much of it can be described as “politely worded bigotry,” rhetoric that recklessly harms the trans community, seemingly innocuous on the surface. 

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They have the best napkins here

Jul 9th, 2020 11:58 am | By

Oops. Michael Cohen was allowed out of prison to serve his time at home because of the virus, and at home meant at home.

He forgot to stay home.

Oops.

Apparently it was the Post that ratted him out.

Michael Cohen could soon be back to chowing down in a prison cafeteria.

The recently sprung jailbird was caught by The Post dining out on Manhattan’s Upper

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Gold medal in vulnerability

Jul 9th, 2020 11:05 am | By

So that’s how it’s done.

In other words, “the vast majority of responses to this are bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch women”…who are pointing out that women as a class are more vulnerable than men.

Simon Curtis is doing this ever-more-popular trick of stacking up privilege-pejoratives in front of the word “women” so that we’ll know to hate them by the time we get to the noun. Oh oh … Read the rest



Y they single him out?

Jul 9th, 2020 9:26 am | By

Trump of course is still raging.

Says Crimey McCriminal.

SO UNFAIR! JUST BECAUSE HE’S THE MOST CORRUPT AND CRIMINAL PRESIDENT IN OUR HISTORY!

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These things take time

Jul 9th, 2020 9:13 am | By

Trump is having a bad day.

The supreme court has issued its decision in one case involving subpoenas for Trump’s financial records.

The justices issued a 7-2 decision that the president’s tax returns and business records may be turned over to a grand jury in New York.

The ruling marks a defeat for Trump, who has pushed for years to hide the documents from the public.

The next ruling is a little more helpful to him.

It is another 7-2 decision written by Chief Justice John Robertsand it calls for sending the case back to the lower court to more closely review concerns over the separation of powers.

“The courts below did not take adequate account of

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Guest post: Being oppressed doesn’t make people immune to being wrong

Jul 8th, 2020 6:09 pm | By

Originally a comment by Bruce Gorton on When two oppressed groups are in conflict.

The admonition to shut up and listen to the members of the oppressed group is a valid one, but it only works when dealing with a non-oppressed group (to-wit, straight white men, preferably but not exclusively middle-class and up).

You know, I don’t think it actually is valid, or more like the validity of “shut up and listen” isn’t on the axis of oppressed versus non-oppressed, but rather on the axis of expertise vs non-expertise.

Because the thing is – being oppressed doesn’t actually make people immune to being wrong, and all too often putting the validity of “shut and and listen” on that axis, … Read the rest



You have to EARN it

Jul 8th, 2020 4:24 pm | By

There’s a problem though.

See the problem? Of course – it’s obvious. Who ARE these people and why should I assume they know better than I do? Why should anyone assume that?

It’s not as if angry pile-ons never get anything wrong. It’s not as if the cancellations never get anything wrong. There’s no reason for anyone to just assume that if you see … Read the rest



By name and by nature

Jul 8th, 2020 12:41 pm | By

This is evil.

One, women refusing to agree that “men can be women if they say they ‘identify as’ women” is not kneeling on other people’s necks. It’s not murder, and it’s not murder-by-torture. It’s evil to accuse women of torture and murder for saying that only women are women.

Two, it’s insulting to George Floyd and to other victims of police brutality to drag their horror into a misogynist attack on women who don’t agree that men are women.

Three, it’s appropriation, the real kind, and an incredibly … Read the rest



You have your instructions

Jul 8th, 2020 11:47 am | By

Lock down! Also send the kids back to school!

In Wednesday’s White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing, one doctor asked four states go back to Phase 1 recommendations after seeing a surge in COVID-19 numbers.

Dr. Deborah Birx, the Coronavirus Response Coordinator for the White House Coronavirus Task Force, spoke about an increase in cases and positivity rates when testing in Arizona, Florida, Texas, and California during the briefing.

“To all of the Americans out there that are in these four states, and the states that have in the report in the red zone, because there is a series of other states that we have in that zone, is really asking the American people in those counties and in

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Your obligation to understand and address inequality

Jul 8th, 2020 8:51 am | By

This guy. THIS GUY.

How belatedly he remembers to mention men. His tribe is white, Generation X, heterosexual, privileged MEN. Women aren’t part of that tribe. He’s astonishingly bad at remembering that, or perhaps at ever noticing it in the first place.

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Blame women

Jul 8th, 2020 8:17 am | By

Not cute.

A San Francisco lawmaker introduced an ordinance that would make it illegal to make a fraudulent, racially-motivated 911 call in response to a number of recent incidents in which white people have called the police on Black people who weren’t doing anything wrong.

So far so good.

Supervisor Shamann Walton introduced the Caution Against Racially Exploitative Non-Emergencies, or CAREN Act, Tuesday, which will “make it illegal for people to contact law enforcement solely to discriminate on the basis of a person’s race, ethnicity, religious affiliation, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity.”

The CAREN Act. Geddit? Hawhaw. Not funny. Not cute.

Imagine if a white lawmaker came up with a SAMBO Act or some such shit. (Some probably … Read the rest



Three !!! threat

Jul 8th, 2020 8:11 am | By

Now Trump is threatening children.

The Guardian points out:

In reality, many administrators, teachers and parents have expressed concerns about sending students back to school as concerns remain over the spread of coronavirus in the classroom.

Many school districts have also warned they do not have the additional funding needed to keep students safe, and the president is now threatening to cut off

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The climate of conformity

Jul 8th, 2020 7:21 am | By

Also via Jesse Singal, this one yesterday.

She thought she was endorsing a message against internet shaming, but she didn’t realize there was someone (or several someones?) on the list of signers who required internet shaming.

She was ready and willing to endorse a message against internet shaming, until she discovered there was a signer she wanted to shame.

She opposes internet shaming unless she wants to internet shame someone.

Mind you, here I am internet shaming her.… Read the rest



What climate of conformity, fear, and mutual surveillance???

Jul 8th, 2020 6:40 am | By

You couldn’t make it up.

“…makes ME feel…”

Well that’s really all there is to say, isn’t it.… Read the rest



The problem of the preferred first speaker

Jul 7th, 2020 6:08 pm | By

More on the Harper’s Letter. From PrawfsBlog:

The authors claim to “uphold the value of robust and even caustic counter-speech from all quarters,” but to fear that “it is now all too common to hear calls for swift and severe retribution in response to perceived transgressions of speech and thought.” Ken White (Popehat to those on Twitter and KCRWsees the letter as drawing an untenable (or at least elusive) distinction between “silencing” and “more/responsive/critical” counter-speech. White labels this the “problem of the preferred first speaker,” the “tendency to impose norms of civility, openness, productiveness, and dialogue-encouraging on a RESPONSE to expression that we do not impose on the expression itself.” In other words, the original speaker

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Guest post: When two oppressed groups are in conflict

Jul 7th, 2020 6:00 pm | By

Originally a comment by Freemage on On being instructed to center everyone else.

The admonition to shut up and listen to the members of the oppressed group is a valid one, but it only works when dealing with a non-oppressed group (to-wit, straight white men, preferably but not exclusively middle-class and up). When two oppressed groups are in conflict, however, there must be an exchange of ideas and debate (and preferably, dialogue), or else you end up with one group being further oppressed.

I do think that actual trans folks suffer oppression (as opposed to the special snowflakes who like to don their trans identity like a fashionable cape they can ditch when it becomes inconvenient, but then re-wrap … Read the rest



How to justice and open debate

Jul 7th, 2020 5:07 pm | By

About that Harper’s Letter

It’s titled “A Letter on Justice and Open Debate.”

Our cultural institutions are facing a moment of trial. Powerful protests for racial and social justice are leading to overdue demands for police reform, along with wider calls for greater equality and inclusion across our society, not least in higher education, journalism, philanthropy, and the arts. But this needed reckoning has also intensified a new set of moral attitudes and political commitments that tend to weaken our norms of open debate and toleration of differences in favor of ideological conformity.

Hmmm. Has it? And if it has, has it in a way that we want to to frown at? If we think wider calls for greater … Read the rest



His unique personality flaws

Jul 7th, 2020 4:13 pm | By

Paul Waldman at the Post has been reading Mary Trump’s book.

Here are some of the highlights:

She claims Trump hired a smarter boy he knew to take the SAT for him; the high score helped get him into college.

She describes Trump’s father, Fred, as not just domineering but a “sociopath.” He was verbally abusive to his children, especially Fred Jr., insisting that they become “killers” unhindered by emotion. “Fred perverted his son’s perception of the world and damaged his ability to live in it,” she writes.

Her father, Fred Jr., came in for particular contempt from Fred Sr. for being soft. “The lesson [President Trump] learned, at its simplest, was that it was wrong to be like

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He hired an excellent proxy

Jul 7th, 2020 12:07 pm | By

Trump hired someone to take the SATs for him.

He’ll be screaming at us all day long.

Mary Trump wrote in her tell-all, set to be published next week, that Trump paid a proxy to take the SAT for him, according to The New York Times, which obtained a copy of the book and reported on the passage Tuesday.

“The high score the proxy earned for him, Ms. Trump adds, helped the young Mr. Trump to later gain admittance as an undergraduate to the University of Pennsylvania’s prestigious Wharton business school,” The Times reported.

Though in 2011 he hounded President Barack Obama for not turning over his college transcripts, Trump has never revealed any similar information about

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A quizzical look

Jul 7th, 2020 11:24 am | By

Peace in our time?

As a trans woman working in academia, one of the questions I regularly get asked is how I get along with feminist colleagues. When I invariably answer “incredibly well”, I’m often met with a quizzical look.

Trans and feminism have certainly had a wobbly relationship over the years, but trans writers have energetically drawn on and contributed to feminist theory, while trans politics has been positively embraced by many feminists. The story here is not one of political conflict, it’s of mutual recognition.

So what’s all this about Rowling then? Not a story of political conflict? Not a conflict between trans ideology and feminism?

It is little wonder that my own daughters, both young feminists

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