All the rights

Nov 29th, 2021 3:25 pm | By

The stars of Activism are really on fire today. Not entirely in a good sense.

Spaces set aside for other people aren’t a “right.” Puberty blockers and elective amputations aren’t “health care.” “Legal protections” that endanger other people aren’t “protections.”

He summoned the troops.

Well, really snarky, at least.



Oh no not cookware

Nov 29th, 2021 11:39 am | By

Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

On a visit to Paris earlier this month, Harris reportedly spent more than $500 on cookware at E Dehillerin, a shop near the Louvre museum

Well, yes, that Le Creuset stuff is expensive.

Republicans and rightwing media outlets seized on the purchase, attempting to use it to show that the vice-president, a former California attorney general and US senator, was out of touch with ordinary Americans.

Ahhhh yes because 500 whole dollars, in sharp contrast to Donald Trump.

Trump or Hillary: who will redecorate the White House better? | Financial  Times

That’s his very own tasteful understated man of the people living room. It cost $37.99 at Walmart.

Trump famously criticised Barack Obama for playing too much golf, said he would be too busy to play much himself, then spent considerable time on the fairways. Estimates of the cost to taxpayers vary. One dedicated website, Trumpgolfcount.com, put it at $149m.

And the kicker is that most of that public money went to Trump himself, because unlike any president before him he charged his Secret Service agents for housing in his own hotels at his own golf clubs. Profit profit profit.



Have friendly chat beforehand

Nov 29th, 2021 11:06 am | By

Points of view.

Oh what was that? thought I, and it didn’t take much hunting to find out.

It was on PM on Radio 4, so I’ll be listening later.

Well that’s a stupid question for a psychologist, even a TV one. Of course we can debate what people claim to “know” and “feel.” If we couldn’t there wouldn’t be much debate about anything.

Surely one of the first and most basic things you learn in psychology is how very fallible human knowing and feeling are. It’s even a bromide – “the easiest person to fool is yourself.”

That is in fact one of the things that irritates me the most about this idiotic movement, the sudden disappearance of this basic item from the toolkit of people who “identify as” skeptics and fans of reason and secularists and all the rest of it. It’s all right there in the question that started my departure from Freethought Blogs: “Do you believe trans women are women, yes or no?” One, no, but two, more to the point, nobody expects a trannish inquisition. Since when do unabashed atheists interrogate other unabashed atheists about what they believe?

It makes people stupid. The whole “movement,” as a movement, makes people stupid, and then it makes them dogmatic and punitive.



But they SAID

Nov 29th, 2021 10:30 am | By

I don’t understand what their point is, the people who write this kind of thing, whether in the Telegraph or on Fox News or on Twitter.

The PM says these measures are designed to prevent a lockdown, but I am utterly convinced they’re the beginnings of one. If they are necessary because the omicron variant’s mutations mean it travels fast, and it has already been spotted nesting in the UK, logic suggests that cases will jump – which means more pressure on the NHS and on ministers to act. How many times have we been told “thus far and hopefully no further”, only for the PM to appear on television days later and admit, with regret, that we have to shut up shop?

What is he, six? He’s complaining that the rules change as what we know changes. Well does he think they shouldn’t? Does he think it’s someone’s fault that knowledge about a constantly mutating virus changes over time? What is his point?

The Government says we should plan for Christmas as normal, but these are the same people who said we could travel to France or Spain earlier in the crisis only to reverse-ferret and give us a few days to get home.

But could that be because of new information? Granted it could be incompetence or politicking, but it could also be because what they know about the virus isn’t fixed in amber.

They don’t know what they’re doing because they don’t know what’s going to happen (we don’t have the data on how bad omicron is) and because there is no silver bullet for a pandemic. We are double-vaccinated. We have been offered a booster. We were encouraged to think that science would lick this thing, yet at the first sign of trouble, we return to the same blunt methods of disease control we introduced last summer.

And? What should they do instead? Just throw their hands up and surrender?

It’s true that we’re not fully locked down, and our rules aren’t as draconian as in parts of Europe, but don’t swallow the propaganda that these measures, however proportionate, are “light”. Cancelled travel means divided families. PCR testing and isolation on return from abroad will hit the travel industry hard. Isolation if you come into contact with a carrier is a recipe for another pingdemic. Then there are the masks, compulsory on transport and in shops, which might do some good and bring a little comfort, but are also irritating, uncomfortable and an invasion of our civil liberties. This matters, or should.

Or, rather, masks might do quite a good job of reducing transmission, and the “civil liberty” of not masking during a lethal pandemic is not one worth writing heroic poetry about.

There are a few paragraphs more of the same kind of childish “I don’t wanna and I don’t hafta” bullshit. It’s all so stupid I don’t know how it gets so much ink.



Impaired by reason of misconduct

Nov 29th, 2021 9:54 am | By

Other news:

The tribunal is deciding whether or not to suspend him.



Many waking up to this nonsense

Nov 29th, 2021 9:46 am | By

Trans activist says what?

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha



Reaching out

Nov 28th, 2021 12:08 pm | By

Oh is that what they call it.

The House Republican leader, Kevin McCarthy, said on Saturday he had “reached out” to Democrats over Islamophobic comments made by one of his party, Lauren Boebert of Colorado, about the Minnesota Democrat Ilhan Omar.

Boebert apologised for the remarks, in which she likened one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress to a suicide bomber, on Friday, saying she wanted to meet Omar in person. 

No she didn’t. We saw this yesterday. She didn’t apologize. She did the “sorry you got so offended” thing. You don’t apologize for an insult by saying “Apologies to anyone who was offended by the insult.” That’s not an apology. It treats the insult as only contingently an insult, and it puts the onus on the targets of the insult as opposed to the trashy person who tweeted the insult. That’s not just not an apology, it’s a further insult, in painting the targets of the insult as whiny babies and the insulter as a patient adult telling them to calm down. Lauren Boebert is not that patient adult, she’s a trashy vulgar belligerent ignoramus.

In a statement to CNN, McCarthy said: “I spoke with Leader [Steny] Hoyer today to help facilitate that meeting so that Congress can get back to talking to each other and working on the challenges facing the American people.”

Never mind that, speak to your trashy vulgar member and tell her to stop with the insults.

McCarthy did not condemn Boebert’s remarks.

Of course he didn’t.



Tentacles

Nov 28th, 2021 10:14 am | By

A tweet prompted me to look for sources.

The Koch organization (only one of the two brothers is still present-tense) is notorious for funding all kinds of reactionary causes, though it also funds items like the PBS series Nova, but I don’t know specifics about an attack on US universities. So, here’s a Trotskyist site with details!

Joking aside, I think I have seen the details before, without properly filing them in the memory system.

Last month, the George Mason University protest group “UnKoch My Campus” released documents to the public through a Freedom of Information Act request detailing how the Charles Koch Foundation and the Federalist Society, groups dedicated to the promotion of ultra-conservative “free market” public policy and ideas, maintain control over the appointment of law school and economics professors at the college, a public university in northern Virginia, as part of a nationwide campaign to promote ultra-right politics.

The ideological activities of Charles and David Koch, with a combined net worth of $96.6 billion, extend to universities, colleges and even high schools. Taking advantage of the deficits caused by the decades-long bipartisan assault on public funding for both K-12 and university education, groups like the Koch brothers, the Walton Family Foundation and the Gates Foundation use their grotesque wealth, squeezed from the working class, in an attempt to inculcate young people with libertarian and other right-wing, pro-capitalist ideologies.

I like “squeezed from the working class” so that we’ll remember they’re genuine Trots (which is not to say I disagree).

In 2016, George Mason University (GMU) received the largest donation in its history, a $30 million gift to its law school. $10 million came from the Koch Foundation and $20 million from the BH Fund, whose president is Leonard Leo, executive vice president of the Federalist Society. The BH Fund’s secretary and treasurer is Jonathan Bunch, vice president and director of external relations at the Federalist Society, a right-wing organization that lobbies for the appointment of ultra-right judges.

Leo played an instrumental role in getting Federalist Society member and far-right Justice Neil Gorsuch a seat on the US Supreme Court in early 2017, suggesting nominees to the Trump administration and meeting personally with the president. Top donors to the society include Koch Industries, David Koch, and the Charles Koch Foundation. Through the BH Fund, the Federalist Society is intimately involved in faculty hiring, gaining admittance for prospective right-wing law students, and suggesting law graduates to clerk for right-wing judges.

That’s all familiar. I don’t exactly see how it’s an attack on US universities in general, at least not a meaningful one, but it doesn’t need to be if it can shape the Supreme Court and the federal judiciary. You got your libertarian capitalist greedies and your whirly-eyed racists and your Republican gerrymandering and hey presto that’s all it takes. The US probably has only another year before everything goes to hell for the final time.



All-female including men

Nov 28th, 2021 9:30 am | By

It’s all “shut up and take it, bitch” at the rape therapy support group.

A rape victim who thought she had found a safe all-female space to help her come to terms with the sexual violence she endured has told how she was left deeply troubled by the arrival of a biologically male trans woman ‘with no obvious female attributes’.

Charity bosses insisted the trans woman had every right to be there as they allow people to define their gender for themselves, saying: ‘We do not police gender.’

Well they should. They’re an absolutely worthless, indeed harm-doing charity if they refuse to keep men out of women’s support groups.

Sarah, who was abused between the ages of eight and 12 and raped when she was in her 20s, said that the new arrival disrupted the dynamic of the support group.

‘Some women had been abused as children so obviously we had that shared experience of being a girl and abused by a man,’ she said.

‘We talked a lot about male entitlement, about how men feel entitled to women’s bodies. Quite often we just said how we didn’t trust men and it felt like a safe space to say that.’

But after the trans woman arrived, such talk became ‘nonsensical’, Sarah said, adding: ‘It felt like the priority of the group was not to talk about male entitlement any more or our shared experiences, but about making sure this person who was born male felt comfortable.’

What was he even doing there?

Sarah said there was no outward physical sign that the new member was transitioning to become a woman and the recruit did not volunteer any comment about any sexual abuse that she may have suffered.

So he was there to get his jollies listening to the bitches whine. Awesome.

Sarah wrote a long, carefully considered letter of complaint to the charity.

‘Please understand this is not a personal attack on the individual group member but an account of how their inclusion felt for me,’ she explained. 

‘When the trans service user began speaking, my first instinct was to leave the group and never come back. I knew that I couldn’t possibly tell the facilitator or any of the volunteers how I felt because the group is explicitly trans-inclusive and I could be labelled a bigot or a transphobe.’

But a reply from Carys Jenkins, head of operations at the charity, ruled out any change of policy. 

‘We do not police gender and we do not define who is and is not a woman; we allow women to define this for themselves,’ she wrote.

No, they allow men to define this for themselves. At the expense of women who need help.

Find a group suitable for bitches like you, she was told.

Sarah, who works in accountancy, took the advice and tried to find another support group solely for biological females in Brighton, but discovered there were none, as they all stated that they welcomed ‘self-identifying females’.

Brighton. They’re not fond of women in Brighton. Just ask Kathleen Stock.

In written evidence to a Commons select committee last year, [Survivors’ Network’s] chief executive Jay Breslaw opposed tightening rules on single-sex spaces, adding that her charity ‘strongly feel that the use of women-only spaces by trans women should be actively encouraged’.

Actively encouraged. Yes, campaigners, get out there and recruit men who say they are women to destroy all the support networks and groups women have, so that women will have nowhere to go to escape and talk about male violence. Brilliant active activism!

Updating to add:



Where they will be safest

Nov 27th, 2021 5:47 pm | By

LGBTQ Nation is furious at feminists who think women in prison shouldn’t have to be locked up with men. LGBTQ Nation doesn’t call them feminists, of course.

A group of trans-exclusionary radical feminists (TERFs) have filed a lawsuit against the state of California for placing transgender women in female prisons.

Well, yes. It’s cruel and unusual punishment to place men in women’s prisons.

The Women’s Liberation Front (WoLF), a group that opposes the extension of legal and civil rights to transgender people, recently filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, Bakersfield.com reported. The lawsuit  claims to represent a group of incarcerated women as well as Woman II Woman, another TERF group.

Ah ah naughty – the group does not oppose any extension of rights to transgender people. There is no “right” for men to be imprisoned with women. That’s not a right. Not every want or wish or fantasy or desire or hey might as well give it a shot is a right.

Both WoLF and Woman II Woman oppose SB 132 — state legislation successfully authored by gay state Assembly member Scott Weiner — which requires jails and prisons “to house transgender, gender-nonconforming and intersex people according to their own sense of where they will be safest.”

What about women’s own sense of where they will be safest? Why doesn’t that get first priority? Seeing as how women are physically vulnerable to men, and the converse is not the case, why isn’t women’s safety the first requirement, and the wishes of trans people conditional on safety for women?

Two incarcerated women listed as plaintiffs in WoLF’s lawsuit alleged that transgender or gender nonbinary inmates sexually assaulted them. One woman said the attack occurred after SB 132 became law. 

And? Does LGBTQ Nation know that the allegations are false? If so it failed to say so. It just treats them as self-evidently wicked and leaves it at that. Pfff, it’s just women in prison, who cares about them. Very left wing, much progressive.



Guest post: It’s not all bad being early

Nov 27th, 2021 3:53 pm | By

Guest post by Bruce Everett

Been feeling oddly Kantian lately, on account of some considerations about the Drake equation, red dwarfs, and the evolution of the universe. The imminent launch of the James Webb telescope is bringing this on as well.

Several terrible documentaries and an awful lot of bad science fiction makes a bit of a fetish out of the idea of “Ancient Aliens”, largely because the narrative of some kind of idealized past that can return to save us addresses a weird but pervasive need…

I can’t relate to it. I find it a bit puerile to be honest; quit an over-reliance on Sky Daddy; start looking for Space Daddy. Couldn’t stand Stargate, sorry.

And the kookiness of thinking Atlantis was any more real than Mordor, or that brown people can’t build monoliths, aren’t things to overlook, but the emotional need for there to have been Greys from Zeta Reticuli on Earth, stacking rocks and benevolently putting things up people’s bums in the early Holocene is something else, too. F***ing why?

We have a nice stable host star. For the time being at least. 100 million years from now it’ll bake our planet well before becoming a red giant. Complex life will clap out a bit earlier. But until then; nice.

What’s not nice are all those planets currently in the “habitable zones” of young red dwarfs. By which I mean “any red dwarfs” because on the timescale of a red dwarf, they’re all young. Young, cool, and unstable like a dirty burning flame.

So “cool”, planets have to be in close to the star for any heat, and as a result are tidally locked. And “unstable” as in anything that gets close is going to cop an all mighty-star parp to the face on a regular basis on account of really, really big solar flares. Flares that strip atmospheres.

The Milky Way is littered with red dwarfs. Stars like ours? Not so much. We’re odd. Even the configuration of our planets (no “super Earths”, nothing inside of Mercury’s orbit) is starting to look peculiar. (Our moon’s pretty spesh too).

Eventually, as the more common red dwarfs age and warm up, they’ll become more stable, and stop dropping huge star-parps. Their “habitable zones” will migrate outwards to where maybe there’s a chance of planets not being tidally locked. And we already know there are a good number of these systems where further out, there are exoplanets with water ice.

So warmth, water, possible rotation, and no atmosphere-scouring solar flares. Oh, and bonus; these red dwarfs will stay stable for billions of years more than our own star will. Plenty of time for life to establish. Could be easy living for the locals, and there’s a metric-fuck-tonne of these stars out there.

Downside: it’s not been even close to enough time for these red dwarfs to become stable. They’ll stay stable long, but they’ll take a long time getting there. Huge timescales. Longer than the present age of the universe. And certainly longer than our own star has left.

Earth will be long dead and gone before the first of these stars mature.

So… If the galaxy ever does wind up with abundant complex life living on a multitude of red dwarfs, it’ll be a long time from now, which makes us the “ancient aliens”. We’re quite possibly just too early to the neighbourhood to find any neighbours. Whether our descendants live long enough to find any neighbours isn’t certain either.

But it’s not all bad being early. The universe as it stands now is pretty interesting and special. There’s stuff we can witness now that will eventually be impossible to witness. The cosmic background radiation will eventually red shift so far it’s no longer visible – but right now it’s available. The observable universe will recede as accelerating expansion throws galaxy after galaxy out of sight. Large bright stars will form less frequently and our galaxy will cool, dim and redden – a number of the things we find beautiful will be gone.

The Milky Way and Andromeda will merge well before the first stable red dwarf becomes welcoming, so the sky certainly won’t be familiar.

A lot of knowledge will become unobtainable, or at least a lot, lot harder to come by. “Hubble flow”? Wot’s that? “Inflationary period”? Huh? “Andromeda Galaxy”? Who the what now? Wait, there are *other* galaxies?

How much of this knowledge winds up unobtainable depends on how far flung into to future we’re talking.

It seems feasible that we’re first cab off the rank, or at least one of the first, and yet there are people who’ve literally killed themselves over the prospect of there being older, wiser, guide-like space beings out there. There are people who still wish they could bring themselves to. The species that is about to launch the James Webb telescope is also the species that came up with the Heaven’s Gate cult. There’s a class in cosmic humility right there.

Perhaps the space-grown-ups could act like it a little more?

So yeah, the Kantian bit. We’ve stumbled our ape-selves into a position of privilege; the ability to witness the early universe. This may have left us all alone, but it just won’t be possible for most of the rest of the universe’s existence and may be far out-of-view by the time complex life becomes common out there (if ever).

I’m kind of feeling that humanity and its descendants owe any possibly intelligent life that follows in our sphere of influence the information that we gather. Let them make of it what they will, but at least they wouldn’t be deprived of the option.

Space-faring descendants, or space-faring artifacts; either way it’d be nice to pay it forward, knowledge-wise, if there’s anyone to listen. As far as finding meaning in an uncaring universe goes, I’d rate this pretty high as a strategy.

And in the meantime, maybe humanity could take its position in the cosmos a little less for granted. That’d be nice too.



A collective shrug

Nov 27th, 2021 11:20 am | By

We’re steeped in violence.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez stood on the House floor and implored her colleagues to hold Paul Gosar accountable for sharing an altered anime video showing him killing her and attacking Joe Biden.

“Our work here matters. Our example matters. There is meaning in our service,” Ocasio-Cortez said in her speech last week. “And as leaders in this country, when we incite violence with depictions against our colleagues, that trickles down into violence in this country.”

House Republicans heard Ocasio-Cortez’s impassioned plea and responded with a collective shrug. All but three Republican members voted against censuring Gosar and stripping him of his committee assignments, while every House Democrat supported the resolution.

The Gosar incident served as the latest data point in an alarming trend in American politics. In a year that began with a deadly insurrection at the US Capitol, lawmakers have seen a sharp rise in the number of threats against them. Republicans’ muted response to Gosar’s behavior has intensified fears about the possibility of more political violence in America in the months to come.

Awesome. It’ll be like the years leading up the the Civil War.

 The US Capitol police reported earlier this year that the agency had seen a 107% increase in threats against members compared with 2020. The USCP chief, Tom Manger, has said he expects the total number of threats against members to surpass 9,000 this year, compared with 3,939 such threats in 2017.

Not good. The threats aren’t just threats – some of those people want to put them into action, and some of those people are likely to try, and some of those could succeed.

And those kinds of threats are not reserved solely for members of Congress. Election workers and school board members also say they are receiving more violent messages. According to an April survey commissioned by the Brennan Center for Justice, nearly one in three election officials are concerned about their safety while on the job.

This is failed state territory.

Stephen Spaulding, senior counsel at the government watchdog group Common Cause, described such violent tactics as “a core threat to our democracy”.

“The threat of violence is really to intimidate people from doing their jobs and upholding their oath of office,” Spaulding said. “When you start having these violent episodes enter the system, it is totally counter to the way that we are supposed to engage in open and fair debate about policy issues in this country.”

Exactly so. That’s what puts it in failed state territory.



Some sort of marvelous transgression

Nov 27th, 2021 10:38 am | By

I would have left this self-humiliation alone but then she had to throw in a jab at “terfs” so…I couldn’t.

Early this year? Uh………..

But she goes on.

Bad faith yourself you ignorant hack.

Many many people inform her of her error.



Repeated, ongoing and targeted

Nov 27th, 2021 10:17 am | By

Boebert is on the naughty step.

“I was getting into an elevator with one of my staffers,” Boebert told the laughing crowd. “You know, we’re leaving the Capitol and we’re going back to my office and we get an elevator and I see a Capitol police officer running to the elevator. I see fret all over his face, and he’s reaching, and the door’s shutting, like I can’t open it, like what’s happening. I look to my left, and there she is. Ilhan Omar. And I said, ‘Well, she doesn’t have a backpack, we should be fine.’ ”

On Twitter on Friday, Omar called for Boebert to be disciplined by House leaders.

“Saying I am a suicide bomber is no laughing matter,” Omar tweeted. “@GOPLeader and @SpeakerPelosi need to take appropriate action, normalizing this bigotry not only endangers my life but the lives of all Muslims. Anti-Muslim bigotry has no place in Congress.”

The Dems issued a statement yesterday:

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, Majority Whip James E. Clyburn, Assistant Speaker Katherine Clark, Caucus Chairman Hakeem Jeffries and Caucus Vice Chair Pete Aguilar issued this joint statement condemning recent Islamophobic and racist comments, as well as a fictionalized incident, from Congresswoman Lauren Boebert:

“Racism and bigotry of any form, including Islamophobia, must always be called out, confronted and condemned in any place it is found.  This is particularly true in the halls of Congress, which are the very heart of our democracy.

“Congresswoman Boebert’s repeated, ongoing and targeted Islamophobic comments and actions against another Member of Congress, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, are both deeply offensive and concerning.  This language and behavior are far beneath the standard of integrity, dignity and decency with which the Constitution and our constituents require that we act in the House.  We call upon Congresswoman Boebert to fully retract these comments and refrain from making similar ones going forward.

“Leader McCarthy and the entire House Republican Leadership’s repeated failure to condemn inflammatory and bigoted rhetoric from members of their conference is outrageous.  We call on the Republican Leadership to address this priority with the Congresswoman and to finally take real action to confront racism.”

The Post says Boebert tweeted an apology (in fact not a real apology) but I can’t find it on Twitter now.

I apologize to anyone in the Muslim community I offended with my comment about Rep. Omar. I have reached out to her office to speak with her directly,” Boebert tweeted. “There are plenty of policy differences to focus on without this unnecessary distraction.”

Not a real apology because she limits it to “anyone offended,” which implies that only some (hypersensitive) people would be offended by it, while good robust healthy people could just laugh it off. Putting it that way amounts to saying she didn’t actually say anything inherently “offensive” – or to put it more clearly, deliberately calculated to insult. Of course she said it to insult, with malice aforethought.

I read several of her tweets when looking for the “apology” one, and was surprised to see how trashy and vulgar she really is. I don’t know why surprised, except I suppose I assume that people who actually get elected to Congress make some effort to live up to the role, even foul people like Boebert. Some probably do but she sure as hell doesn’t. “Trashy” is a vile epithet but it fits her. She’s trashy all the way down.

The other reason that “apology” isn’t an apology is because of the punchline: “There are plenty of policy differences to focus on without this unnecessary distraction.” Makes it sound as if the “unnecessary distraction” came from some third party, or even from Omar herself.

Trash.



Does it?

Nov 26th, 2021 4:41 pm | By

I guess self-mutilation is a civil right? And doctors encouraging and performing mutilations is also a civil right? Doctors giving 12-year-olds puberty blockers also a civil right?

How many lives does “gender-affirming health care” (i.e. breast/penis removal, cross-sex hormones, puberty blockers) end?

I wonder if the ACLU really is that confident about the long-term joy and relief of these drastic physical interventions.



Urging action

Nov 26th, 2021 11:42 am | By

But it isn’t “a row over transgender rights” – nobody wants to take any rights away from trans people. It’s always framed that way, and the framing is wrong.

A ROW over transgender rights has broken out on the opening day of the SNP conference, with activists demanding the party whip be withdrawn from a prominent MP.

The party’s official LBGTQ+ wing, Out for Independence, signed an open letter to Nicola Sturgeon and Westminster leader Ian Blackford urging action against Joanna Cherry QC.

The signatories, who included SNP, Scottish Green and unaligned campaigners, also called on the SNP to launch an investigation into transphobia in the SNP’s ranks.

It isn’t transphobia, either.

They’re talking about the “conversion therapy” bullshit – the framing of caution about drastic changes to the body as the same kind of thing as trying to talk people out of being same-sex attracted.

In a tweet earlier this month, the Edinburgh South West MP [Cherry] said conversion therapy, which is soon to be banned, was something which “any right thinking person must oppose”.

She then added: “We must not make it a criminal offence for therapists to try to help patients with gender dysphoria to feel comfortable in their birth sex.”

Because the two are not the same.

Just think: being lesbian or gay doesn’t involve any drastic changes to the body. What a bonus! No slicing off of penis or breasts, no cross-sex hormones, no puberty blockers – nothing medical at all.

Last week, Ms Cherry wrote a newspaper column about her beliefs on conversion therapy, and said: “Of course I’m against conversion therapy. What I want to preserve is therapy for young girls who are gender confused. Please ignore the distortions & the witch hunt”.

But of course the distortions and the witch hunt continue.



They can be really scary people

Nov 26th, 2021 10:41 am | By

The BBC November 13:

Durham University has defended its decision to offer training sessions to help students involved in sex work.

Further Education Minister Michelle Donelan had accused it of “legitimising a dangerous industry which thrives on the exploitation of women”.

But the university said it was acting responsibly by offering students advice on how to stay safe.

Last week its students’ union offered staff and students guidance for people involved in the sex industry.

The best way to stay safe is not to sell access to your body to anyone willing to pay. The danger is inherent.

November 18:

Last week Durham University defended its students’ union’s decision to offer training sessions to those working in the industry alongside their studies.

Anna said she would have found training helpful as “there were times where I felt quite scared of what I was doing”.

She said she had a support network of other sex workers her age but said many felt “quite isolated” and she was sometimes threatened.

“They can be really scary people and you can find yourself in scary situations that you get yourself into through this line of work,” she said.

Which is why you should avoid this line of work.

Yesterday:

Many johns are telling her how wrong she is.



Oh no she didn’t

Nov 26th, 2021 9:46 am | By

Ilhan Omar says cool story but she made it all up.

The Minnesota Democrat Ilhan Omar called the Colorado Republican Lauren Boebert a buffoon, a bigot and a liar, for claiming to have joked about terrorism when sharing an elevator in Congress.

“Fact,” Omar wrote on Twitter on Thursday. “This buffoon looks down when she sees me at the Capitol, this whole story is made up. Sad she thinks bigotry gets her clout.

“Anti-Muslim bigotry isn’t funny and shouldn’t be normalised. Congress can’t be a place where hateful and dangerous Muslims tropes get no condemnation.”

Boebert is a first-term far-right Trump ally who consistently seeks controversy. Her connections to the deadly attack on the Capitol on 6 January remain under investigation.

She’s that, yes, but so much more. She appears to be a horror in every way – dishonest, aggressive, malicious, stupid, conceited.

The remarks raised calls for Boebert to face formal censure – as recently did Paul Gosar of Arizona, for tweeting a video which depicted him killing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, another prominent progressive, and threatening Joe Biden.

Boebert’s reference to “the other night on the House floor” was to remarks in support of Gosar in which she called Omar “the Jihad Squad member from Minnesota” and repeated rightwing conspiracy theories about her.

It used to be normal for the US to call itself the world’s greatest democracy (which is kind of Boebertesque itself). Those days are over.

H/t Sackbut



Early start

Nov 26th, 2021 4:32 am | By

It’s the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

Twelve year old girl killed in Liverpool.

A murder investigation has been launched following the death of Ava White. She was killed when out with friends on Thursday night during the annual switch-on of the Christmas tree lights on Church Street.

Four males – one aged 13, two aged 14 and one aged 15, all from the Toxteth area of Liverpool – have been arrested on suspicion of murder, Merseyside police said.

Ava was one of two females to die in suspicious circumstances in Liverpool on Thursday, the very day the city launched a three-year strategy to tackle violence against women and girls. The mayor, Joanne Anderson, said: “This is an absolute priority for me and my administration.”

47-year-old woman was also found dead in a house in Stoneycroft in east Liverpool on Thursday afternoon. Her death is being treated as “unexplained”. Three men – a 21-year-old and 57-year-old from Stoneycroft, and a 46-year-old from Norris Green – were arrested on suspicion of murder.

The two deaths occurred on White Ribbon Day, a global campaign to end violence against women. Liverpool landmarks were lit up in orange to mark the start of the 16-day initiative, including Merseyside police headquarters.

Progress is slow.



Green-eyed monster

Nov 25th, 2021 3:32 pm | By

Wait who is jealous?

It’s lesbians who are jealous? Of trans people? It’s not trans people who are jealous of people of their coveted sex, so jealous that they literally pretend to be that coveted sex no matter how batty and misogynist and intrusive that makes them look?

You coulda fooled me.