Notes and Comment Blog

Maggots started coming out of the living room carpet

Jul 28th, 2019 11:24 am | By

Also, from way back in May 2017 – ProPublica on Kushnerville, Baltimore:

Tenants in more than a dozen Baltimore-area rental complexes complain about a property owner who they say leaves their homes in disrepair, humiliates late-paying renters and often sues them when they try to move out. Few of them know that their landlord is the president’s son-in-law.

I blogged about it at the time, so if it’s familiar to you that may be why.

The worst troubles may have been those described in a 2013 court case involving Jasmine Cox’s unit at Cove Village. They began with the bedroom ceiling, which started leaking one day. Then maggots started coming out of the living room carpet. Then raw sewage started flowing out of the kitchen sink. “It sounded like someone turned a pool upside down,” Cox told me. “I heard the water hitting the floor and I panicked. I got out of bed and the sink is black and gray, it’s pooling out of the sink and the house smells terrible.”

But Prince Jared rushed to fix it and compensated her for the damage?


Cox stopped cooking for herself and her son, not wanting food near the sink. A judge allowed her reduced rent for one month. When she moved out soon afterward, Westminster Management sent her a $600 invoice for a new carpet and other repairs. Cox, who is now working as a battery-test engineer and about to buy her first home, was unaware who was behind the company that had put her through such an ordeal.

But please, tell us more about the “infestation” in Cummings’s district.

The garbage piled in the back yard included decomposing rat carcasses

Jul 28th, 2019 11:05 am | By

Speaking of rats, and garbage, and filthy conditions…it turns out Prince Jared is a slum landlord who turns a blind eye to such conditions for his tenants.

The refuse piled in the back yard of 118 East 4th Street was “Dickensian,” says longtime tenant Jennifer Hengen. It filled the sunken yard at least five steps high, and included “decomposing rat carcasses.” The building also went without gas for almost five months. Tenants got service turned back on in early March after they filed an “HP action” lawsuit in Housing Court demanding repairs from their landlord, Jared Kushner, and then filed a motion to hold him in contempt after his representatives didn’t show up for the first hearing.

That was 2016, before the prince’s anointing.

The building is one of more than 50 that Kushner—who married Donald Trump’s eldest daughter Ivanka in 2009—has acquired over the last four years. He has spent more than $400 million buying portfolios of properties in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Astoria, but most are in the East Village, making him the neighborhood’s second-largest landlord after the notorious Steven Croman, says Brandon Kielbasa, an organizer with the Cooper Square Committee.

At least 40 of his buildings were purchased from Ben Shaoul and Stone Street Properties, owners who specialized in buying buildings that contained large numbers of rent-stabilized tenants, and inducing them to leave with a combination of trumped-up eviction notices, buyout offers, and messy, all-hours construction in the vacated apartments. Once the empty apartments were renovated, they could be rented out at luxury rates.

Kushner, who also owns the NY Observer, has used those tactics, but usually buys buildings that have “already been worked over,” says Kielbasa, who has worked with tenants in buildings owned by Kushner and Shaoul. Kushner, he says, treats both rent-stabilized and market-rate tenants badly, and seems to feel that he can get away with not maintaining buildings because the housing market is so tight he can keep them full anyway.

He can’t spend money on maintaining buildings, he has to spend it on luxuries for self and family.

Garbage is the most common complaint. At 170 East 2nd Street, “by Sunday, you couldn’t walk in the hallways,” says Siwek. “Garbage was out of control,” says one East Village tenant. “Garbage everywhere,” says another. At 118 East 4th, Hengen says, the problems began when Westminster began putting garbage in the back yard because they were getting summonses for putting it in front of the building.

Interesting detail in the circumstances, isn’t it?

Some choice words

Jul 28th, 2019 10:42 am | By

The Baltimore Sun editorial board:

In case anyone missed it, the president of the United States had some choice words to describe Maryland’s 7th congressional district on Saturday morning. Here are the key phrases: “no human being would want to live there,” it is a “very dangerous & filthy place,” “Worst in the USA” and, our personal favorite: It is a “rat and rodent infested mess.” He wasn’t really speaking of the 7th as a whole. He failed to mention Ellicott City, for example, or Baldwin or Monkton or Prettyboy, all of which are contained in the sprawling yet oddly-shaped district that runs from western Howard County to southern Harford County. No, Donald Trump’s wrath was directed at Baltimore and specifically at Rep. Elijah Cummings, the 68-year-old son of a former South Carolina sharecropper who has represented the district in the U.S. House of Representatives since 1996.

Because why? Silly question. Cummings is not a Republican and he’s not white and he’s not an admirer of Donald Trump.

In pointing to the 7th, the president wasn’t hoping his supporters would recognize landmarks like Johns Hopkins Hospital, perhaps the nation’s leading medical center. He wasn’t conjuring images of the U.S. Social Security Administration, where they write the checks that so many retired and disabled Americans depend upon. It wasn’t about the beauty of the Inner Harbor or the proud history of Fort McHenry. And it surely wasn’t about the economic standing of a district where the median income is actually above the national average. No, he was returning to an old standby of attacking an African American lawmaker from a majority black district on the most emotional and bigoted of arguments.

One word: “infested.” It’s a tell.

Finally, while we would not sink to name-calling in the Trumpian manner — or ruefully point out that he failed to spell the congressman’s name correctly (it’s Cummings, not Cumming) — we would tell the most dishonest man to ever occupy the Oval Office, the mocker of war heroes, the gleeful grabber of women’s private parts, the serial bankrupter of businesses, the useful idiot of Vladimir Putin and the guy who insisted there are “good people” among murderous neo-Nazis, that he’s still not fooling most Americans into believing he’s even slightly competent in his current post. Or that he possesses a scintilla of integrity. Better to have some vermin living in your neighborhood than to be one.

We’re infested with Trumps.

Many experts were living in fear of being labelled transphobic

Jul 27th, 2019 3:56 pm | By

Even the Guardian has started to notice.

School counsellors and mental health service providers are bowing to pressures from ‘highly politicised’ transgender groups to affirm children’s beliefs that they were born the wrong sex, a leading expert has warned.

Marcus Evans, a psychotherapist and ex-governor of the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, whose Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) is the only NHS clinic to provide gender counselling and transitioning, said many experts were living in fear of being labelled transphobic, which was having an impact on their objectivity.

Because it’s not just a matter of “being labelled transphobic” and then walk away – it’s a matter of being labelled transphobic and then being shunned and demonized and berated on social media, of losing friends and publication opportunities and even jobs, of being treated as a thousand times more evil and harmful than even Donald Trump or Boris Johnson.

The number of children referred annually to GIDS has risen from 468 in 2013 to 2,519 in 2018. Some claim social media is a factor in the increase.

Ya think?

Evans said that since his resignation he had become concerned that the debate around transitioning had been shut down by a vocal minority. “The mind that is free to think or ask difficult questions is treated as a real threat; TV producers and journalists continually report that while people are willing to speak in confidence to them about their reservations about treatment in these areas, they shy away from being named, for fear of being accused of being bigoted and transphobic and sometimes either disciplined or even sacked for speaking their mind.”

Because it happens. We’ve watched it happen. We’ve watched it happen many many times by now.

Since his high-profile resignation, Evans’s concerns have broadened as parents approach him for advice about their children.

“They confirm that a gender-affirmative approach is being adopted by many school counsellors and CAMHS (Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services),” Evans notes.

“These parents all expressed alarm that, after their children suddenly announced they believed they were the wrong sex, practitioners were immediately endorsing the belief that this was the cause of the child’s distress, rather than offering time to explore perhaps long-standing psychological/developmental issues.”

Satanic panic all over again.

Which is the disgusting part?

Jul 27th, 2019 12:50 pm | By


So we’re paying Eric’s bills too

Jul 27th, 2019 12:35 pm | By

Wait, what?

The Scotsman reports on payments from the US State Department to Donald Trump’s golf resort in Scotland. So far so corrupt and so familiar. But there’s an extra twist.

Last summer, The Scotsman, detailed a series of payments made by the State Department to SLC Turnberry Limited.

The first, for $10,113 (£8,112), was approved on 5 April 2018, followed by $39,602 (£31,768) and $30,074 (£24,125) on 10 and 11 July respectively.

The latter two payments were for hotel accommodation for Mr Trump and key members of his administration. The president was photographed playing two rounds of golf during his two night stay at Turnberry, part of his visit to the UK.

It is understood the April payment related to a visit to Turnberry by Eric Trump. the executive vice president of development and acquisitions at the Trump Organisation.

By Eric Trump? What does that have to do with the State Department? State shouldn’t be pouring money into Trump’s businesses anyway, but the usual scam is for them to book half the administration into Trump hotels while on official business. But Eric Trump is in no way part of the administration, so why are his bills being added to the tab? It’s second-level graft.

The Scotsman doesn’t explain.

Such specialized and respectful attention

Jul 27th, 2019 11:21 am | By

Rex Murphy wonders where the Canadian reporting is.

From my perspective the core of the story is not Yaniv, who, from what I have read, presents as opportunistic, cruel and delusionally self-entitled, who manipulates the ever-changing fixations of identity and gender politics for (a) notoriety, (b) possible gain, and (c) some delight in pushing and insulting hard-up people, especially Asians and newcomers (see last week’s column) as a very questionable personal amusement.

Where is this yarn — outside the National Post and Toronto Sun — in the large media of this country? CTV, CBC, The Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star? Silence. (The Post Millennial has covered the story, as has Blaire White, herself a transgender woman — she posted her work on YouTube.)

He then says the tv networks are too busy reporting on Trump, which I think is nonsense.

Is it not Canadian news that the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal is giving this apparently aggressive and eagerly litigious person such specialized and respectful attention? At the same time as 16 women are going through what must be to them a frightening, perplexing and tormenting legal grinder? Why are the Canadian media not at least reporting on what they are going through?

Is it simply because even the word “transgender” is kryptonite to the brave media who are always otherwise anxious to write and broadcast “truth to power”? The silent passing over of this story is journalistic cowardice, the fear of offending the passing pieties of militant progressivism.

There are competing pieties here though. Normally militant progressivism is quick to stand with persecuted immigrants, and rightly so, but for some reason one narcissist’s claimed transitude is more piety-worthy than 16 persecuted immigrants women.

Did the tribunal’s members think maybe if 16 — 16! — women unanimously turned Yaniv down, the problem was more likely with the would-be customer, not the provider? Did they consider the upheaval in their lives as solemnly as they presided over this transparently noxious, trivial, illogical and indulgent complaint?

In my column last week, I lamented the Tribunal’s lack of common sense. This week I ask where’s their sense of human sympathy, compassion for the newcomer — and to use one of their most-beloved terms, for the marginalized? The woman from Brazil has lost her income while Yaniv enjoys the publicity.

He’s not wrong. I suspect I disagree with him on most things, but he’s not wrong on this one.

Who is the brutal bully here?

Jul 27th, 2019 10:51 am | By

More overt noisy shameless bullying racism from the monstrous president of the US.

Straight from Fox to his rotting brain to his thumbs.

Did you catch the “no human being” part? Geddit?

Trump’s tweets came about an hour after a Saturday morning Fox and Friends segment where Kimberly Klacik, a black Republican strategist, talked about conditions in the Maryland district.

She called it the “most dangerous district in America” and claimed that “living conditions at the border are better than most areas in his district” while showing footage of abandoned homes.

“The President saw my work. This just made my day 😊,” Klacik tweeted following Trump’s comments.

Smiley smiley smiley happy face smiley. We’re whipping up racism via a trashy right-wing tv network and the president is openly racist smiley smiley happy face smiley.

“Donald Trump has tweeted more than 43,000 times. He’s insulted thousands of people, many different types of people, but when he tweets about infestation it’s about black and brown people,” Victor Blackwell, the co-host of CNN’s New Day Weekend said on air Saturday responding to Trump’s tweets.

“The president says about Congressman Cummings’ district that no human would want to live there,” Blackwell added. “You know who did Mr. President? I did. From the day I was brought home from the hospital to the day I left for college and a lot of people I care about still do. There are challenges, no doubt, but people are proud of their community. I don’t want to sound self-righteous, but people get up and go to work there, they care for their families there, they love their children who pledge allegiance to the flag just like people who live in districts of congressmen who support you, sir. They are Americans too.”

I hope Trump’s head explodes. Today: right now. I hope he goes to kick his golf opponent’s ball into the rough and before he can finish the move his head explodes, boom, and he’s gone. This shit needs to stop right this second.

A number of the world’s worst people

Jul 27th, 2019 10:18 am | By

Ahhhhhhhh shut up.

Arwa Mahdawi at the Guardian on The Yaniv Question:

The answer to that is clearly “no”, right? If a female beautician has only been trained to wax female genitalia and only wants to offer these services to women then that should be her prerogative. But, hang on a minute, what if the person who wants their intimate areas to be waxed is a woman with male genitalia? What happens then?

Nothing happens then, because there is no such thing. Women don’t have male genitalia. The question would be “what if the person who wants their intimate areas to be waxed is a man who says he is a woman?”

Then Mahdawi gets down to the serious business of poisoning the well.

While the Yaniv case has been going on for a while now, you may not have heard much about it, as it has largely been covered by the rightwing press. The sort of outlets that normally joke about consent and women’s rights are now outraged that women are being forced to handle male genitalia against their will. The sort of writers that are normally whipping up hate against immigrants are now outraged and concerned that at least one of the beautificians that Yaniv has filed complaints against is a poor migrant. In short there has been a hell of a lot of bad faith and transphobia involved in the reporting around the case.

To put it another way, the leftwing and mainstream press has shamefully failed to cover this story because hey it’s only women being bullied out of their jobs and into a lawsuit.

The press has looked away, but lefty feminist women on social media have not.

A number of the world’s worst people have used the story as an example of “political correctness gone mad” and as a way to stoke hatred against trans people.

The world’s worst people? Seriously??

Sometimes the brainwashing cleans everything away.

Not fully hinged

Jul 27th, 2019 9:55 am | By

I do like a headline that begins with “Scrotum waxing human rights complainant”…

The Toronto Sun on an encounter yesterday between a citizen journalist and J. Yaniv:

Groin waxing human rights complainant and transwoman Jessica Yaniv and her mother got in a heated verbal argument with a citizen journalist at a courthouse in downtown Vancouver on Friday.

“I was there to support these ladies who have the law being used against them in such a ridiculous way,” Dan Dicks told the Sun. “So I was just going to politely ask (Yaniv) a few questions.”

But Yaniv wasn’t having it.

“He called the police, he threatened to pepper spray me, he pulled the alarm in the elevator,” Dicks said of Yaniv.

Notice with what speed he jumps out of that scooter.

Yaniv also asked to be escorted by security and have Dicks removed from the courtroom, both requests were denied.

Will his scrotum ever be hairless and silky smooth? Tune in again tomorrow for more As the Wax Melts.

Subpoena the air conditioner and the book

Jul 26th, 2019 5:37 pm | By

Trump blames Obama for the air conditioning.

Trump offered the new gripe about his predecessor as he explained in the Oval Office Friday why he’ll be spending some time at his New Jersey resort in August.

The president says “it’s never a vacation” when he goes to Bedminster, New Jersey, and that he would rather be at the White House.

He says that some of his time away from the White House gives crews time to do maintenance work.

He says, for example, “The Obama administration worked out a brand new air conditioning system for the West Wing. It was so good before they did the system. Now that they did this system, it’s freezing or hot.”

How would he know what the system was like before? It’s not as if they had him over for lunch every day.

Also he’s pretending to think Obama is as crooked as he is.

“We want to find out what happened with the last Democrat president,” Trump told reporters in the Oval Office, for no apparent reason. “Let’s look into Obama the way they have looked at me from day one. They looked into everything that we’ve done. They could look into the book deal that President Obama made. Let’s subpoena all of his records.”

Yes, it’s an outrage, both Obamas actually know how to write. Isn’t that unAmerican?

Its well-known biased agenda against Trump

Jul 26th, 2019 5:18 pm | By

Another libel case bites the dust:

A federal judge has thrown out a Kentucky teen’s lawsuit accusing the Washington Post of falsely labeling him a racist after an encounter with a Native American man at the Lincoln Memorial.

Nicholas Sandmann, a student at Covington Catholic High School, sued the newspaper for $250 million in February, alleging that it had engaged in “targeting and bullying” and modern “McCarthyism.”

The actions of Sandmann and his classmates were intensely debated after video and photographs emerged of them wearing “Make America great again” hats near a Native American man playing a drum. President Trump cheered the lawsuit, posting to Twitter: “Covington student suing WAPO. Go get them Nick. Fake News!”

Federal Judge William O. Bertelsman ruled that there may have been “erroneous” opinions published by the Post, but that they are protected by the 1st Amendment.

But but but it was all because they’re Trump-haters.

“The Post ignored basic journalist standards because it wanted to advance its well-known and easily documented, biased agenda against President Donald J. Trump … by impugning individuals perceived to be supporters,” according to the complaint.

Yes, only bias could explain any opposition to Donald “Mob Boss” Trump.

H/t Screechy Monkey

Not everybody is getting in

Jul 26th, 2019 5:01 pm | By

Jim Wright points out something very important:

“You know you hear that, uh, that Nancy Pelosi and others say walls are unchristian. They’re immoral. If that’s true, then God’s immoral because he told Nehemiah to build a wall around Jerusalem. There’s going to be a wall around Heaven Revelation 41 says. You know I got to preach the inauguration sermon for President Trump and I preached on Nehemiah when God selects a leader and I stopped and said, you see Mr. President, God’s not against walls.”

That’s Robert Jeffress, Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church, Dallas Texas, Fox News religious expert, one of the most influential Evangelicals in the country.

Now, lest you think what I am about to say is an inaccurate representation of this religion, note that Jeffress has said this same bit over and over, from the pulpit, in speeches in front of colleges, and on Fox News in front of the nation.

Here he is on January 6th of this year on Fox News, and note in this clip he very specifically says, “there’s a wall around Heaven. Not everybody is getting in.”


This is what shapes the Conservative worldview, right here. This horrible selfish religion. Evangelicals see America the same way they see the Christian heaven: It’s not paradise if everybody gets to go. Only the special people get in, and the very best part is sitting up there with Jesus, laughing at everybody else burning FOREVER down below.

This is exactly how they see America. Exactly the same.

Only a select few are allowed in. Build a wall and keep everybody else out. So what if they are forced back to hellish conditions in their own countries? So what? That’s THEIR fault. Why should we feel guilty about that? Let ’em burn. We’re saved. In fact, if they didn’t have it so terrible, WE wouldn’t have anything to compare our own condition to. Let ’em burn.

He’s absolutely right; it’s a horrible ungenerous cruel way of looking at things, and the fact that they ascribe it to their god is tragic. Why the hell would there be a wall in heaven? Why would a god put some people in heaven and some in hell? What do perfection and eternity have to do with walls and neener-neener I get in and you don’t?

I’m with Huck Finn. I’d rather go to hell than that loathsome heaven.

Part of the nationwide legislative push by Project Blitz

Jul 26th, 2019 4:02 pm | By

FFRF on that stupid new South Dakota law:

The Freedom From Religion Foundation is damning an exclusionary new South Dakota law that mandates displaying an “In God We Trust” logo in all public schools.

I guess that’s a free from religion inside joke, “damning” a theocratic law. We noreligionists don’t believe “damning” things is really a meaningful concept. Sarcasm! I like it!

“A new state law that took effect this month requires all public schools in the state’s 149 districts to paint, stencil or otherwise prominently display the national motto,” the Associated Press reports. “The South Dakota lawmakers who proposed the law said the requirement was meant to inspire patriotism in the state’s public schools.”

The law — insultingly confusing patriotism with piety — is part of the nationwide legislative push by Project Blitz, which is a stealth campaign to inject religious bills into state legislatures across the country. The campaign, FFRF avers, is an unvarnished attack on American secularism and civil liberties, imposing the theocratic vision of a powerful few on We The People.

I think the FFR is not wrong about that. Kids in public school are captive audiences; they have to be there, and the fact that they have to be there should not be an opportunity to force religion on them. Religion is not a kind of thing that should be forced on people, because it’s too heavily dependent on idiosyncratic made-up beliefs that are presented as true.

“In God We Trust” was belatedly adopted as a motto when President Eisenhower signed legislation at the behest of the Knights of Columbus and other religious entities, which undertook a national lobbying campaign during the height of 1950s zealotry.

The zealotry is back. I do not like the zealotry.

The motto mandate

Jul 26th, 2019 3:34 pm | By

For some reason the US has something called “the national motto.” Since when does a country need a “national motto”? What else does it need? A national joke, a national friendship ring, a national slogan, a national pet, a national keychain, a national ring tone? Why do we need laws imposing such things? You may think “oh it’s not an actual law, it’s just some custom-type item” but you’d be wrong, there’s an actual law.


The modern motto of the United States of America, as established in a 1956 law signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, is “In God we trust“.

That is so stupid. We don’t need a “national motto” and if we did it wouldn’t be that one. Who’s “we,” kemosabe?

The change from “E Pluribus Unum” to “In God we trust” was generally considered uncontroversial at the time, given the rising influence of organized religion and pressures of the Cold War era in the 1950s. The 1956 law was one of several legislative actions Congress took to differentiate the United States from atheistic communism. Earlier, a 1954 act added the words “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance. Some states also adopted mottos with religious overtones during this time, for example Ohio‘s “With God, all things are possible“.

Mandatory goddism whether we like it or not.

So, for added thrills, now we get states mandating the stupid “motto” be prominently displayed in public schools. The land of the free that tries to force all of its people to believe in a made-up god. South Dakota is god-pasting the schools even as we speak.

Public school students in South Dakota will notice something different on their first day back to school — the national motto, “In God We Trust,” prominently inscribed on walls in stencil or paint.

A new state law that took effect this month requires the message to be displayed in an area where students are “most likely” to see it, such as a cafeteria or entryway.

Gov. Kristi Noem signed the requirement into law in March. It says the motto must be at least 12-by-12-inches in size and easily legible.

No escape! You can’t ignore it! The state can force it on you whether you like it or not! Now down on your knees.

Within the last couple of years, six states — Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, Florida, Alabama and Arizona — have approved similar legislation, enforcing or allowing public schools to post the U.S. motto.

Anybody who doesn’t like it, tough shit.

There is no pause button

Jul 26th, 2019 11:16 am | By

Lucy Bannerman at the Times:

Jacob has just turned 16 and for the past four years the teenager’s body has been put on pause. He has been on hormone blockers to stop puberty while he decides how far he is willing to go to become a transgender man.

He claims that taking blockers was “the worst decision I’ve ever made”.

Jacob was born a girl but felt unhappy with his gender. “I always felt so weak and pathetic and inferior to the men.” He started using the male pronoun and imagined himself growing up and “dating a woman”.

It’s not as if that feeling is entirely unknown to girls in general. There are different degrees of it, but few girls get to escape it entirely. Girls learn early that boys hit harder.

So Jacob went to the Tavistock clinic and was referred for blockers.

“It was sold to me as a miracle cure for being trans,” he claimed. He told another trans school friend about them, who started requesting blockers too.

Hormone blockers are only licensed in Britain to delay the onset of puberty for children suffering “precocious puberty” — that is, those who start developing abnormally early before the age of eight or nine.

However, their use is promoted by the transgender campaign group Mermaids as a way of giving young people “a pause button” while deciding whether to graduate to the irreversible, cross-sex hormones that will trigger the life-changing, fertility-reducing jump from one gender to another, once they reach 16.

But there is no “pause button” in life.

“They promise you that your breasts will disappear, that your voice will be deeper, that I would look and sound more like a boy. For me, that was the best thing that could have happened,” he said.

Only, Jacob found that wasn’t what happened at all. Far from becoming one of the lads, as he’d hoped, he felt even more alienated from them as their physiques changed and Jacob’s remained the same.

“At school, other people were maturing into adults. The guys I grew up with were growing hair and growing up. For someone who’s trying to fit in as a boy, that’s not what you want.”

That’s the missing pause button, see. You can’t make everyone else “pause” along with you, and the result is they leave you behind. He had been a tall kid but he became a very short teenager. His younger brother passed him and Jacob could no longer stand to be in the same room with him.

“My little brother is 18 months younger and now he has completely outgrown me. I go to school and I feel like other people are developing and I still feel like a child,” he said.

Jacob also claims he was not warned about the side-effects of the drugs.

These have included insomnia, exhaustion, fatigue, low moods, rapid weight gain which caused his skin to become covered with angry, itchy stretch marks, and a reduction in bone density. “I’d never broken a bone before [taking puberty blockers],” he says. “I’ve since broken four bones.

“I stubbed my toe, it broke. I fell over, my wrist broke. Same with my elbow.”

As he took the blockers, Jacob’s mother watched her child become even more introverted and body-conscious. “The blockers contributed more to the self-image problems that were already there,” she said.

Jacob is now staggered by the lack of discussion before he was merrily given blockers.

Mermaids, the transgender lobby group, claims that puberty blockers are safe and “completely reversible” and that not giving them to youngsters who request the can be more damaging than prescribing them.

Gendered Intelligence, another trans campaign group, claims on its website that hormone blockers give children “breathing space to ensure that they are sure about the permanent effects of cross-sex hormones, without the adverse effects of an incorrect puberty.”

Jacob is scathing about such claims. “Breathing space! It really isn’t. I’ve not had any space to breathe the last four years.

“They sell it to you as a break from feeling like a girl, and that’s fine for the first few months but as soon as everyone else around you starts developing it becomes ‘spot the transgender kid’, which is so easy because you’re stuck as a child.”

Aging out of childhood is hard. There are at least parts of it that everyone misses. It doesn’t follow that the solution is to get stuck in it by taking insufficiently tested drugs.

A spokesman for Tavistock said: “All young people considering the puberty blocker or cross-sex hormones are repeatedly made aware of the known potential impacts of these medical interventions. . .as well as the areas of impact that remain to some extent unknown.

“The information that we give patients about the blockers makes it clear that they may get tired and experience low mood.

We explain to young people that hormones give us energy and drive, not just our sex drive but our overall ‘get up and go’.

“We also emphasised to them routinely that while on the blocker they would stay early puberty whilst their peers developed. This is a routine part of the discussion.

“In the end the decision to go on blockers is a balancing act weighing up these factors against the perceived distress of undergoing puberty in the ‘wrong’ gender and developing unwanted and potential hard to change secondary sexual characteristics.”

But what if there is no such thing as “the ‘wrong’ gender”? What if that is a social fad invented by “activists” and promoted by more and more and more activists? What if there is only the body, and whichever sex that body is, and how that body decides to live in the world? What if the Tavistock is promoting and amplifying that “perceived distress of undergoing puberty in the ‘wrong’ gender” and doing massive harm in the process?

Celebrities including Kim Kardashian West and Justin Bieber

Jul 26th, 2019 10:34 am | By

Sweden is not impressed by Trump’s attempt to tell them what to do in the matter of a US citizen accused of assault in Stockholm.

“The rule of the law applies to everyone equally and is exercised by an independent judiciary,” tweeted former prime minister Carl Bildt. “That’s the way it is in the US, and that’s certainly the way it is in Sweden. Political interference in the process is distinctly off limits. Clear?”

Clear to everyone except Donnie Two Scoops. He thinks he’s the emperor of the world.

Trump said on Thursday he was very disappointed in Stefan Löfven for being unable to act. He said “Sweden has let our African American community down in the United States. Give A$AP Rocky his freedom.”

The US president also said: “We do so much for Sweden but it doesn’t seem to work the other way around. Sweden should focus on its real crime problem.”

“Our African American community,” as if President Racist had a history of being a huge fan and defender of our African American community, as opposed to a history of being sued for refusing to rent to members of that community and a history of trying to get members of that community railroaded to execution for a crime they didn’t commit.

Other Swedish politicians also rebutted Trump’s comments, pointing out that the charges against the rapper were not arbitrary and wondering by what right Trump felt entitled to make such requests. “So, what is it you do for us, Mr President?” Fredrick Federley MEP tweeted.

I too would like to know by what right Trump feels entitled to make such demands. It wasn’t a request, it was a demand, a peremptory bossy entitled demand.

Celebrities including Kim Kardashian West and Justin Bieber have rallied behind the rapper and backed a #FreeRocky campaign…

Kardashian West appealed directly to Trump to help Mayers, prompting the US president to tweet last week that he would “call the very talented Prime Minister of Sweden to see what we can do about helping A$AP Rocky”.

It’s all about pulling strings. It’s about fame and money and huge tits. It’s about a world where famous rich people get to decide who is prosecuted for assault and who isn’t. Fortunately that world is a fantasy inside the heads of people like Kim Kardashian and Ivanka Trump and her noxious Daddy, but if they had their way it would be like that in the real world. Remain vigilant.

Copious volumes of previously stored carbon dioxide

Jul 26th, 2019 10:15 am | By

The Beeb on the burning of the Arctic:

Wildfires are ravaging the Arctic, with areas of northern Siberia, northern Scandinavia, Alaska and Greenland engulfed in flames.

Lightning frequently triggers fires in the region but this year they have been worsened by summer temperatures that are higher than average because of climate change.

Plumes of smoke from the fires can be seen from space.

Climate change is making the summer temps higher and the resulting fires will make climate change worse, aka hello feedback loop.

In June, the fires released an estimated 50 megatonnes of carbon dioxide – the equivalent of Sweden’s annual carbon output, according to Cams.

Jonathan Amos offers some analysis:

The fires are releasing copious volumes of previously stored carbon dioxide and methane – carbon stocks that have in some cases been held in the ground for thousands of years.

Scientists say what we’re seeing is evidence of the kind of feedbacks we should expect in a warmer world, where increased concentrations of greenhouse gases drive more warming, which then begets the conditions that release yet more carbon into the atmosphere.

A lot of the particulate matter from these fires will eventually come to settle on ice surfaces further north, darkening them and thus accelerating melting.

It’s going to get worse and worse faster and faster.

Sweden should do what Donald Trump orders it to do

Jul 25th, 2019 5:31 pm | By

A mere three hours later –

We love OUR law enforcement officers, but we feel perfectly entitled to insult OTHER people’s law enforcement officers by telling them how to do their jobs from many thousands of miles and vast acres of stupidity away.

Also, this is Donald fucking Trump, who tried to get the Central Park Five executed by buying an ad in the New York Times, and who went on insisting they were guilty after DNA evidence exonerated them.

He is such a horrendous sack of shit.


Jul 25th, 2019 1:44 pm | By

Always seeking to do the worst thing.

The U.S. government is poised to carry out the death penalty for the first time in nearly two decades, the Justice Department announced Thursday.

U.S. Attorney General William Barr has instructed the Federal Bureau of Prisons to change the federal execution protocol to include capital punishment, the Justice Department said.

Barr also asked the prisons bureau to schedule the executions of five inmates who have been found guilty of murder. According to the DOJ, the victims in each case included children and the elderly. In some of the cases, the convicted murderers also tortured and raped their victims.

“The Justice Department upholds the rule of law — and we owe it to the victims and their families to carry forward the sentence imposed by our justice system,” Barr said in a statement.

“We owe it to the victims and their families to kill someone.” I don’t think so. I don’t think that’s how owing works. I don’t think that’s how a government pays a debt to a set of people. I don’t think vengeance is a debt owed by government.

In the past 10 years, at least five states — New Mexico, Illinois, Connecticut, Maryland and New Hampshire — have abolished the death penalty, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. And in March, California Gov. Gavin Newsom put an executive moratoriumon his state’s death penalty.

In two more states — Washington and Delaware — courts recently ruled that their capital punishment laws are unconstitutional.

Capital punishment has also been criticized because of the risk that the justice system may erroneously convict and punish someone who’s innocent.

“Since 1973, more than 160 people who had been wrongly convicted and sentenced to death in the U.S. have been exonerated,” according to the Death Penalty Information Center.

But with Barr as AG the Federal Government is determined to be worse than the states that abolished the death penalty, and to ignore the risk of executing people who didn’t commit the relevant crime.