Vulnerable people

Sep 2nd, 2020 10:43 am | By

Some academics are angry that male people won’t be allowed to play on women’s rugby teams.

World Rugby’s proposals to ban trans women from playing women’s rugby have been criticised by dozens of academics, who have written to the sport’s governing body to insist there is “no evidence” that trans women pose a safety risk to others playing the sport.

One, that’s absurd, but two, it’s beside the point. Women and men are physically different in many ways, and that’s why they compete mostly on separate teams. Trans women are physically men, so they should not force themselves onto women’s teams.

The letter, which has been co-signed by 84 leading academics from a range of fields including sport, public health and sociology, also questions the science behind the proposed ban and warns it will discriminate against vulnerable people.

Women are vulnerable people. Women as a group are vulnerable to men as a group. Trans women are socially vulnerable in many ways, but they are not physically vulnerable to women in the way women are physically vulnerable to men. Forcing women to accept men who identify as trans in their sports would discriminate against vulnerable people. It’s bizarre how quickly all these “academics” have lost sight of the vulnerability of women to male physical dominance.

“We are opposed to World Rugby’s proposed ban of an entire population group from playing women’s rugby: non-binary people assumed male at birth and transgender women,” it says. “There is no peer-reviewed, scientific evidence to justify a ban which would only be harmful to trans and gender diverse people.”

Who said anything about banning “non-binary” people? Anyone? Surely women who call themselves “non-binary” are not banned from women’s rugby? It’s only men, whether trans or “non-binary,” who are banned from women’s rugby. And there’s no such thing as “assumed male at birth.”

However, World Rugby has issued a robust defence of the research on which its recommendations are based, as well as its application of that research, which has concluded there is a minimum of 20% to 30% increase in injury risk factors when typical male-bodied and female-bodied players are involved in tackles – even when trans women suppress their testosterone in line with International Olympic Committee rules.

I wonder if any of these 84 academics have female children. If so I wonder how many of them would genuinely feel perfectly happy for their daughters to play rugby on teams that include men who identify as trans women.



Going back to “the old ways”

Sep 1st, 2020 5:47 pm | By

What is Red Tent Australia?

The aim of Red Tent Australia is to connect, collaborate and create a community of strong and educated women in a supportive & nurturing environment. Our direction is governed by the need to nurture a symbiotic relationship with the earth. We believe everyone is connected. We believe that the earth needs us to remember our ancestral knowledge & go back to “the old ways.”

It is our goal to connect women with their natural wisdom in all areas of their lives, to initiate and increase their healing.

Well, ick, as far as I’m concerned, but whatever. It’s a thingy for women, and the “red tent” reference is about menstruation, and the need to shun and punish female people for menstruating.

So of course it’s of the greatest importance to start adding men.

Here is a little bit about Emme🌷

Emme has been a member, regular active participant and volunteer in Red Tent circles for nearly 4 years. First at Sydney’s Northern Beaches then at Hornsby. She also has participated in the Sydney North Shore and Central Coast Red Tents.

She brings to the Executive Committee her being a representative of these roles and perspectives: member, volunteer, assistant, facilitator, executive committee member and also being from an often marginalised group in society with a desire to assist in enhancing inclusiveness for women of diverse backgrounds.

Diverse backgrounds like being a man! Those diverse backgrounds! Enhance inclusiveness by adding men to women’s groups, because women must never be allowed to have anything just for women. Unless it’s a bad thing, of course – back in the old days women and girls used to be exiled to Red Tents, where they might die of cold or carbon monoxide poisoning or being murdered after rape. No need to add men to that. But now that it’s just about “the need to nurture a symbiotic relationship with the earth” it’s time to add men so that the whole thing won’t be all weak and needy and boring.

There have been some skeptical responses but the nice people in charge of the Facebook group have deleted them all. Welcome aboard Femme Emme!



Different strokes

Sep 1st, 2020 5:10 pm | By

Trump says nuh uh he DID NOT EITHER have a stroke or a bunch of mini-strokes. We must accept that because he is famous for never lying.

Sadly, #Strokeahontas is trending on Twitter.

Both.



Soup of the evening, beautiful soup

Sep 1st, 2020 4:17 pm | By

Official White House transcript of Trump remarks on July 31 at a meeting of police organizations:

In cities across the nation, we’ve also seen police officers assaulted with bricks, rocks, bats, Molotov cocktails, frozen bottles of water. Somebody said last night, one of the protesters — I saw it — he said, “It’s only water. How can water hurt you?” Yeah, they don’t say it’s frozen, in a bottle the size of a football. And they throw it at the police. It’s unbelievable. “It’s water.”

And then they have cans of soup. Soup. And they throw the cans of soup. That’s better than a brick because you can’t throw a brick; it’s too heavy. But a can of soup, you can really put some power into that, right?

MR. MCHALE: Yes, sir.

THE PRESIDENT: And then, when they get caught, they say, “No, this is soup for my family.” They’re so innocent. “This is soup for my family.” It’s incredible. And you have people coming over with bags of soup — big bags of soup. And they lay it on the ground, and the anarchists take it and they start throwing it at our cops, at our police. And if it hits you, that’s worse than a brick because that’s got force. It’s the perfect size. It’s, like, made perfect.

And when they get caught, they say, “No, this is just soup for my family.” And then the media says, “This is just soup. These people are very, very innocent. They’re innocent people. These are just protesters. Isn’t it wonderful to allow protesting?” No, there’s — and, by the way, the media knows it better than we do. They know what’s going on. I don’t know what’s wrong with them. They’re doing our country a tremendous disservice — I’ll say that.

Three times he said “This is soup for my family.”



Guys in monochrome

Sep 1st, 2020 10:22 am | By

I cannot get past this Scary People On a Plane thing. This isn’t some disheveled person on the bus, it’s not even an agitated cousin at the family reunion, this is the president of a heavily armed nation.

Apparently he got it, directly or indirectly, from Facebook.

It’s unsettling, to put it mildly, to think the sitting American president believes there are nefarious forces lurking in “dark shadows,” whom he won’t identify, but whom he sees controlling both a presidential candidate and American streets.

But Trump didn’t stop there.

In an interview with Fox News host Laura Ingraham, Trump claimed that “we had somebody get on a plane from a certain city this weekend, and in the plane it was almost completely loaded with thugs, wearing these dark uniforms, black uniforms, with gear and this and that.” He then claimed the matter was “under investigation right now.”

Steve Benen points out certain aspects of that claim that make it especially hard to believe.

I won’t pretend to be an expert in tactical disruptions, but if I were part of a gang of thugs, wouldn’t I try to keep a relatively low profile — especially on a commercial aircraft? Wouldn’t I encourage my fellow thugs to wear different clothes, in order to remain inconspicuous? Wouldn’t I recommend storing my “gear and this and that” until after we arrived at our destination?

Also wouldn’t TSA spot the “gear and this and that” and call security to escort them out of the airport?

The likely explanation for this is that the president saw some weird rumor online months ago, and took it seriously.

The claim about a plane flight matches a viral Facebook post from June 1 that falsely claimed, “At least a dozen males got off the plane in Boise from Seattle, dressed head to toe in black.” The post, by an Emmett, Idaho man, warned residents to “Be ready for attacks downtown and residential areas,” and claimed one passenger had “a tattoo that said Antifa America on his arm.”

Wait a second. Dressed head to toe in black – why is that even worth mentioning?

Men's Black Suit

Ok but he saw it on the internet.

Updating to add Pliny’s latest:



The scary plane to Wherever

Sep 1st, 2020 9:36 am | By

Here he is vouching for the complete and utter truth of his claim about that mysterious plane full of scary people in dark clothes.

See, there was a person on a plane, and there were about six people like that person, and the entire plane filled up with that other kind of people. (Could this possibly be code for white people on the one hand and black people on the other hand? Surely not. Surely surely not.)

The plane filled up with The Looters and The Anarchists and The Rioters, people that were obviously Looking For Trouble, and The Person felt very uncomfterbul on the plane, this would be a person that You Know, so I’ll see whether or not I can get That Person to Speak To You, but this was A Firsthand Account of a Plane going from Washington to Wherever, and I’ll see if I can get that informashun for you, maybe they’ll Speak to You, maybe they won’t.

Well! There’s no arguing with that!



He sees stupid people

Sep 1st, 2020 9:14 am | By

Another lovely glimpse into his id – he sees himself as standing alone in a sea of incompetent stupid people.

Ingraham asks him what he says to people, women in particular, who don’t love his aggressive tone.

He pulls himself up and says a preliminary “Okay,” like, here it comes – “I have to be aggressive, I’m standing here [leans forward a touch] in a sea of incompedent people, stupid people, and violent people, [shake of the head] very violent people –

Ingraham interrupts to say that’s what people don’t like, “stupid people” – Trump says “Well where are we?” and looks to the side and up – “we’re in the White House I see.”

Yes, to our permanent shame, that is where he is.



In the dark shadows

Sep 1st, 2020 9:00 am | By

Completely normal, nothing to see here.

Sounds like a joke but isn’t. That’s actually what he says.

Ingraham: Who do you think is pulling Biden’s strings, is it former Obama people –

Trump: People that you’ve never heard of, people that are in the dark shadows –

Ingraham [cutting in]: What does that mean, that sounds like conspiracy theory, dark shadows, what is that?

Trump: No, people that you haven’t heard of, they’re, they’re people that are on the streets, they’re people that are controlling the streets. [pause, big sniff, sit up straighter, take deep breath to fuel extended fantasy babble] We had somebody get on a plane from a certain city this weekend. And in the plane, it was almost completely loaded with [suppresses a belch] with thugs, wearing these dark uniforms, black uniforms, with gear and this and that – [shifty look to the side] – they’re on a plane!

Ingraham: Where is this –

Trump: I’ll tellya sometime but its under investigashun right now – but they came from ay [clip ends]

A lunatic is driving this bus and we can’t get him out.



Guest post: Diseases like the Black Death change societies

Aug 31st, 2020 4:41 pm | By

Originally a comment by Claire on Ask Doctor Oz next. (Excuse two guest posts from the same person in one day but if you people will insist on being wantonly informative and clarifying this way it simply can’t be helped.)

Herd immunity. For a pandemic. Fuck.

Herd immunity is a population specific term. Herd immunity is used in humans for very specific reasons. Calculating the vaccination rate required to reduce infections in a population. In a retrospective manner, looking at historical data. Projecting into the future in worse case scenarios and measuring against interventions and their efficacy.

By the time you’re working with populations, they’ve stopped being people and have become mere numbers. Epidemiologists have to remind themselves from time to time that there are people behind the number, but not think about it too often because that way madness lies.

Herd immunity is the worst case scenario in a population that could become immune to the disease over time. This occurs not because people change or the virus changes but because the makeup of the population changes. Most of the people unable to become immune die, those left restrict the virus’ ability to find a human host. Here’s the problem – this virus is zoonotic. It can infect other animals, much in the way that flu does. So achieving extinction is impossible. It can sit there happily mutating in a bird or a mammal of any species – (probably but not exclusively) chickens and pigs, respectively.

Dr Atlas is proposing an attempt to achieve herd immunity through natural selection. Yes, good old fashioned eugenics. Consider the Black Death. That epidemic killed between one and two thirds of the population of Europe. It signaled the end of feudalism and severely limited the genetic pool in people of European ancestry. (We white people are like clones compared with the rest of humanity).

Diseases like the Black Death change societies. I don’t know if Dr Atlas will like the result. Nor will the white supremacists. Battling a disease that can literally almost wipe out a continent’s worth of people is easier the more genetic variation you have. People of African ancestry have the most (it’s the oldest population, older = more time to recombine and mutate DNA). White people have the least. Not because of age exclusively, but because of one epidemic effect 670 years ago. Evolutionarily a blink but in terms of historical impact, it was huge.

Herd immunity assumes the possibility of immunity either natural or through vaccination. If long term immunity cannot be achieved, modern civilization is heading for the biggest transformation since the fall of the Roman empire which plunged European civilization into the Dark Ages or the Great Flood of Gun-Yu which heralded the beginning of dynastic succession in what later became China.

And if long term immunity isn’t possible? We may see the greatest transformation of a civilization you’ve ever seen. A global transformation. The biggest, most beautiful, in history.



A concentrated pre-dawn burst

Aug 31st, 2020 4:18 pm | By

Peter Baker on Trump’s Twitter frenzy yesterday

… embracing fringe conspiracy theories claiming that the coronavirus death toll has been exaggerated and that street protests are actually an organised coup against him.

In a concentrated pre-dawn burst, the President posted or retweeted 89 messages between 5.49am and 8.04am on Sunday on top of 18 the night before. He resumed on Sunday night.

Cool that he has so much free time, as well as so much good sense, discipline, sense of proportion, conscience, dedication…

In the blast of social media messages, Trump also embraced a call to imprison New York Governor Andrew Cuomo; threatened to send federal forces against demonstrators outside the White House; attacked CNN and NPR; embraced a supporter charged with murder; mocked his challenger, former vice-president Joe Biden; and repeatedly assailed Portland’s Democratic mayor Ted Wheeler, even posting the mayor’s office telephone number so that supporters could call, demanding his resignation.

Couldn’t he just get sick right now? Not fatally sick, necessarily, just sick enough that it would make him shut the fuck up? I mean fatally sick would be ideal, but I don’t want to over-demand.

Trump likewise reposted messages asserting that the real death toll from the coronavirus was only about 9000 — nowhere near 183,000 — because the others who died also had other health issues and most were of an advanced age.

“So get this straight — based on the recommendation of doctors Fauci and Birx the US shut down the entire economy based on 9000 American deaths to the China coronavirus,” said the summary of an article by the hard-line conservative website Gateway Pundit that was retweeted by the President, denigrating his own health advisers, Dr Anthony Fauci and Dr Deborah Birx.

It’s what psychopaths do.

But Trump also retweeted a message calling for Cuomo to be locked up because of the high death toll from the coronavirus in New York nursing homes earlier in the pandemic. “#KillerCuomo should be in jail,” said the message by actor James Woods, a strong supporter of the President.

Of course he did. He doesn’t have the pedantic obsession with “consistency” that you inside the Beltway reporters and treasoners have.

And the President even “liked” a tweet that offered support for Kyle Rittenhouse, a 17-year-old Trump supporter who has been charged with homicide after two demonstrators were shot dead in Kenosha, Wisconsin. “Kyle Rittenhouse is a good example of why I decided to vote for Trump,” the tweet said.

Murderers forevaaaaaaaa!



Guest post: Understanding risk

Aug 31st, 2020 12:42 pm | By

Originally a comment by Claire on Expertise.

Sigh. Why aren’t people taught risk better in school? I find that many people outside of STEM (and many within it too) just do not understand risk, nor do they understand the difference between the two models

If the probability that a woman is injured in a tackle from a transwoman is 20-30% (as per World Rugby) then the demoninator is the tackle. In Harper’s formulation, it’s more complicated but the answer may not be what she expects.

Let’s propose an imaginary trans woman who had been a short, weedy man and transition made him lose muscle and even bone density to that of a woman’s (unlikely but this is a thought experiment). He’s still going to represent a risk to the women on the field. Because men’s and women’s rugby is played differently. Female physiology means that the style of play involves fewer head-on tackles and shoulder tackles, and more tackles from the side. This actually increases the risk of concussion in women’s rugby.

Add our imaginary transwoman playing in a male style would be unpredictable to the women on the team because she would not attempt tackles (and other maneuvers) in the same way. And if she learns the style, she’s still a risk because biomechanical factors mean that women have a higher rotational speed of their head during a tackle. Rotational speed is very, very bad, as you might imagine. And all the hormones in the world won’t change that. Nice paper here.

So, yes, the number of transwomen on rugby teams is small right now. Currently the top 30 women in women’s rugby average tens to hundreds of tackles per match. Let’s look at Jess Breach at number 30 in the 2018 Sevens – she made only 60 tackles in that entire tournament. If our imaginary trans woman made a similar number of tackles and taking the low end 20% risk per tackle, that means as many as 12 injuries could result from that tournament. And that is assuming one transwoman in the entire tournament.

Those 12 are excess injuries, i.e. the number of additional injuries incurred by having one transwoman in a tournament who made 60 tackles. The number 1 player by tackles in 2018 was Portia Woodman, who made a whopping 215 tackles. You do the math.

So Harper can go take a long walk off a short pier. Claiming that the risk has to be calculated as a function of number of transwomen in a tournament or league is not helpful to her cause because it underlines the disruption just one transwoman makes to injuries resulting from that tournament.



Ask Doctor Oz next

Aug 31st, 2020 10:54 am | By

Let’s take a different approach.

One of Donald Trump’s top new medical advisers is urging the White House to embrace a “herd immunity” strategy to combat the coronavirus pandemic. Herd-immunity strategies entail allowing disease to spread through much of the population, thereby building natural immunity to the deadly, highly contagious virus. Basing its reporting on “five people familiar with the discussions,” The Washington Post says the Trump White House has already begun to implement some policies along these lines.

One tiny issue here (along with others) – from what I’ve seen it’s looking as if there is no natural immunity to this virus. People have been getting it again, after recovering the first time.

The approach’s chief proponent is Scott Atlas, a neuroradiologist with no background in infectious diseases or epidemiology from Stanford’s conservative Hoover Institution. Atlas has advocated that the United States adopt the Swedish model, which relies on lifting restrictions so that healthy people can build up immunity to the disease rather than limiting social and business interactions to prevent the virus from spreading.

And unhealthy people can die off. Where’s the downside?

There’s been reporting on this for a couple of weeks, but apparently the new bit is “The Washington Post says the Trump White House has already begun to implement some policies along these lines.” It’s also worth repeating though – that Trump’s go-to guy on this does not have the relevant training.



Expertise

Aug 31st, 2020 10:07 am | By

Man who calls himself a woman explains how wrong it is to think men playing on women’s rugby teams would be a danger to women.

“Well, frankly, I think [the leaders of World Rugby] had their minds made up, before they called the meeting,” Harper said. “It would have been nice to have seen a trans woman rugby player there, but I doubt it would have made any difference.”

Would it though? Would it have been nice? Suppose you’re on a committee working out legislation on rape; would it be nice to have a rapist there?

The use of “trans woman” works so well to disguise this absurd “include the aggressors in the conversation” bullshit. It wouldn’t sound so persuasive to say “It would have been nice to have seen a man who wants to play rugby on the women’s team there” – but that of course is in fact what he is saying. If we’re going to talk about rules to keep men from playing on women’s teams, we have to include men who want to play on women’s teams in the discussion – that’s the claim. Stupid, isn’t it.

Harper is very comfortable dismissing the possibility of harm to women.

“This idea of a 20 to 30% risk that they floated out, in increased risk, for trans women tackling cisgender women, this was based on cisgender men tackling cis women, and so, it doesn’t apply to trans women,” said Harper. “I would admit that there is probably some theoretical risk of, as a group, of transwoman tackling cis women. However, just talking about that misses a very important point, and that’s that very few tackles in a match in a tournament in the world are made by transwomen. And if you talk about a percentage increase in risk, you shouldn’t be talking about it in terms of tackles, but rather in terms of of matches or tournaments or leagues. And if we look at it in terms of a match, it’s very seldom the case that there’s even one transwoman on the field.”

So it’s okay because it won’t happen all that often. Cool. So then adults should be allowed to play on children’s teams as long as injuries are rare? An occasional broken neck is fine?

“One of the things that we note in that paper is that if you look cross-sectionally at the data, you can see that the trans women in these groups, prior to starting hormone therapy, have substantially reduced strength and muscularity when compared to cisgender males,” she said. “To understand that, you need to go beyond this idea of hormones and to look at the population of trans women. If you look at trans women as a population group, trans women are far more likely to starve themselves so they can look like models than to build muscle. That’s the population they’re studying as opposed to athletic trans women.”

So…these men who say they are women want to look like models? And play rugby? But on the women’s team? And because they starve themselves to look like models they won’t be a risk to women if they force their way onto the women’s teams?

Weird argument.

Also fatuous, because even a very thin man still has the many male physical advantages that make it unfair for him to play on the women’s team.



We paid for empty rooms

Aug 31st, 2020 9:37 am | By

Clever trick!

The Secret Service had asked for a room close to the president. But Mar-a-Lago said it was too late. The room was booked. Would agents like a room across the street from the president, instead?

March 2017, this was. They didn’t waste much time.

The next time, the Secret Service didn’t take the same risk. It paid Mar-a-Lago to book rooms for two weeks at a time — locking them up before the club could rent them to others, according to newly released records and emails.

For Trump’s club, it appeared, saying no to the Secret Service had made it a better customer. The agency was paying for rooms on nights when Trump wasn’t even visiting — to be ready just in case Trump decided to go, one former Trump administration official said.

More $$$$ for him, less for us. That’s what the presidency is for, right?

Trump has now visited his own properties 271 times as president, according to a Washington Post tally — including a visit Thursday, when he met with GOP donors at his D.C. hotel.

Through these trips, Trump has brought the Trump Organization a stream of private revenue from federal agencies and GOP campaign groups. Federal spending records show that taxpayers have paid Trump’s businesses more than $900,000 since he took office. At least $570,000 came as a result of the president’s travel, according to a Post analysis.

This is one of Trump’s talents – thieving and cheating on the small scale as well as the large.

Now, new federal spending documents obtained by The Post via a public-records lawsuit give more detail about how the Trump Organization charged the Secret Service — a kind of captive customer, required to follow Trump everywhere. In addition to the rentals at Mar-a-Lago, the documents show that the Trump Organization charged daily “resort fees” to Secret Service agents guarding Vice President Pence in Las Vegas and in another instance asked agents to pay a $1,300 “furniture removal charge” during a presidential visit to a Trump resort in Scotland.

This is all part of his rebellion against The Elites.

In response to questions for this report, White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement that Trump has “turned over the day-to-day responsibilities of running the company though he was not required to, [and] has sacrificed billions of dollars” because of discarded deals.

“The Washington Post is blatantly interfering with the business relationships of the Trump Organization, and it must stop,” Deere wrote in his statement. “Please be advised that we are building up a very large ‘dossier’ on the many false David Fahrenthold and others stories as they are a disgrace to journalism and the American people.”

There are newly-released documents that show Trump charged the government inflated prices, contrary to what Eric Trump has been claiming all this time.

In early 2017, for instance, Pence visited Las Vegas to speak to a Republican Jewish Coalition gathering. He stayed one night at the Trump International Hotel in Las Vegas, newly released receipts show. The Secret Service was charged for 151 rooms, at about $102 per room per night — the maximum rate for Las Vegas at the time under normal federal per-diem rules. Secret Service agents are allowed to exceed the limit while on protective duty.

In Las Vegas, the Trump hotel also tacked on $29 per room in “resort fees,” receipts show. That added $4,379 to the bill, for a total of $20,183. The hotel’s website said the fee covered services such as coffee, shoe shines and shuttle service to the shopping mall at the Caesars Palace casino. The Trump Organization did not say why it had charged resort fees to working Secret Service agents.

Here’s why: because it could. Because we have all these putative norms and rules and must nots, but we do exactly nothing to enforce them.

Trump’s children and grandchildren also visited Trump properties repeatedly, bringing their own taxpayer-funded Secret Service details.

In September 2017, for instance, Donald Trump Jr. stayed at the Trump hotel near the White House while in Washington to testify before a Senate committee investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign. His Secret Service detail reported paying the hotel $3,300 for rooms over two days, according to the newly released receipts.

It’s great, isn’t it? Junior had to testify because he’s entangled in his daddy’s corrupt government even though the rules say he should have nothing to do with it, and because they’re ignoring all those norms, they get to stick us with yet another inflated bill for staying in his daddy’s own hotel. Heads they win tails we lose.

Trump visited his D.C. hotel Thursday to meet with donors and supporters. The hotel has been a hub of activity all week, with panels and private events led by senior Trump administration officials ahead of his Republican National Convention speech. Some Trump family members, officials and allies have spent time in a private suite there before and after their speeches. Thursday’s event was arranged by Trump Victory, a joint fundraising committee for the Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee, officials said.

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$



Horst Wessel

Aug 30th, 2020 4:50 pm | By

Trump is having success in stoking violence.

Yesterday in Portland:

A person was shot and killed in downtown Portland Saturday night as a pro-Trump car caravan wound its way through city streets, clashing with counterprotesters along the way.

Images from the scene Saturday night show a man wearing a hat featuring the logo of Patriot Prayer, a group that has regularly attended, hosted and engaged in violence at Portland protests through the years. The man was also wearing a “Thin Blue Line” patch on his shorts, indicating support for the police.

The shooting occurred around 8:45 p.m. near the corner of Southwest Third Avenue and Alder Street. Portland police are investigating it as a homicide.

The lead-up to Saturday’s “Trump cruise rally” generated fear of yet more violence from both sides. A post pinned to the Facebook event page, which drew some 2,500 attendees, discouraged people from openly carrying firearms and instead encouraged concealed carry.

It’s all so Weimar.

Videos posted online show people in flag-adorned trucks driving through groups of protesters, firing paintball guns at crowds and deploying what appears to be pepper spray. Individual cars or groups of counterdemonstrators tried to break the caravan’s steady stream, blocking them with vehicles and bodies, which sometimes led to dangerous, tense confrontations.

And then somebody got shot. Nice job, Don.



A 3-smiley call for violence

Aug 30th, 2020 3:25 pm | By

Most most most most most maximum progressive. Also most vulnerable.

I particularly love that this enlightened person is a “sensitivity reader.” Ho yus, all about the sensitivity.



Republicans talk about fear?

Aug 30th, 2020 10:53 am | By



His rights as a woman

Aug 30th, 2020 10:38 am | By

Yet again, I don’t understand how it works. Yet again I don’t understand the basic concept. Yet again I think it’s the concept that’s broken, not my reading comprehension.

Rupert Goodwins says that saying only women are women is to deny trans women’s [i.e. men’s] rights as women.

That’s such a peculiar thing to say, and to think. As usual, imagine saying it of anything else. Saying only rabbits are rabbits is to deny trans rabbits’ [i.e. lions’] rights as rabbits.

How is it possible for men to have rights as women? If men have rights as women then what do women have? Rights as men? Wouldn’t it be simpler just to leave things as they were, so that women have women’s rights and men have men’s?

RG is saying that women deny men’s rights by saying that women are women, which is absurd on its face. The only way they can make this work is by inserting magic words which are intended to delete everything we know about what we mean by “women” and “men.” If you refer to women as “cis women” then suddenly the whole category is up for grabs, and women are just part-timers in their own sex. If you refer to some men as “trans women” then it becomes okay to pretend that women, who are only part-timers after all, are oppressing men by saying men are men.

And what, exactly, are “trans women’s rights as women”? Trans women are men, so what “rights as women” can they have? What rights can they have that make it a violation of those rights for women to say that men are men? Do men have a “right” to force women to agree that they (men) are women if they say they are? What kind of “right” would that be exactly? Surely it’s more of a liability or handicap or obstacle than a right.

It never stops being weird to see adults talking this absurd gibberish.



The actual vote tallies

Aug 30th, 2020 9:33 am | By

Oh ffs.

It even signals that that’s what he’s doing – saying “it’ll be difficult for anyone — China, Russia, Iran — to change actual vote tallies” just underlines that it will be easy for anyone to do other things to influence the election. It will be difficult for anyone to change actual vote tallies but easy to change voter views and motivations, by lying and fakery and manipulation. What a relief!



Trump cheered

Aug 30th, 2020 9:16 am | By

More openly fascist by the day:

A pro-Trump caravan of trucks drove into downtown Portland on Saturday to clash with Black Lives Matter protesters there, leaving one person, who was wearing the insignia of far-right group Patriot Prayer, dead.

Trump cheered on a caravan of his supporters that rolled into Portland on Saturday as “GREAT PATRIOTS,” even after video showed them driving into protesters, hurling tear gas and shooting them and a New York Times reporter with paintballs.

He did.