February 6, 2018

Katie Roiphe on the new whisper network

Filed under: Media, Politics, USA — Tags: , , , — Nicholas @ 05:00

She’s already taken a lot of heat from other women over this essay:

For years, women confined their complaints about sexual harassment to whisper networks for fear of reprisal from men. This is an ugly truth about our recent past that we are just now beginning to grapple with. But amid this welcome reckoning, it seems that many women still fear varieties of retribution (Twitter rage, damage to their reputations, professional repercussions, and vitriol from friends) for speaking out — this time, from other women. They are, in other words, inadvertently creating a new whisper network. Can this possibly be a good thing?

Most of the new whisperers feel as I do, exhilarated by the moment, by the long-overdue possibility of holding corrupt and bullying men such as Harvey Weinstein, Charlie Rose, and Matt Lauer to account for their actions. They strongly share some of its broader goals: making it possible for women to work unbothered and unharassed even outside the bubble of Hollywood and the media, breaking down the structures that have historically protected powerful men. Yet they are also slightly uneasy at the weird energy behind this movement, a weird energy it is sometimes hard to pin down.

Here are some things these professional women said to me on the condition that their names be withheld:

    I think “believe all women” is silly. Women are unreliable narrators also. I understand how hard it is to come forward, but I just don’t buy it. It’s a sentimental view of women … I think there is more regretted consent than anyone is willing to say out loud.

    If someone had sent me the Media Men list ten years ago, when I was twenty-five, I would have called a harmlessly enamored guy a stalker and a sloppy drunken encounter sexual assault. I’d hate myself now for wrecking two lives.

    One thing people don’t say is that power is an aphrodisiac … To pretend otherwise is dishonest.

    What seems truly dangerous to me is the complete disregard the movement shows for a sacred principle of the American criminal justice system: the presumption of innocence. I come from Mexico, whose judicial system relied, until 2016, on the presumption of guilt, which translated into people spending decades, sometimes lifetimes, in jail before even seeing a judge.

    I have never felt sexually harassed. I said this to someone the other day, and she said, “I am sure you are wrong.”

    Al Franken asked for an investigation and he should have been allowed to have it; the facts are still ambiguous, the sources were sketchy.

    Why didn’t I get hit on? What’s wrong with me? #WhyNotMeToo

    I think #MeToo is a potentially valuable tool that is degraded when women appropriate it to encompass things like “creepy DMs” or “weird lunch ‘dates.’” And I do not think touching a woman’s back justifies a front page in the New York Times and the total annihilation of someone’s career.

I have a long history with this feeling of not being able to speak. In the early Nineties, death threats were phoned into Shakespeare and Company, an Upper West Side bookstore where I was scheduled to give a reading from my book The Morning After. That night, in front of a jittery crowd and a sprinkling of police, I read a passage comparing the language in the date-rape pamphlets given out on college campuses to Victorian guides to conduct for young ladies. When I read at universities, students who considered themselves feminists shouted me down. It was an early lesson in the chilling effect of feminist orthodoxy.

But social media has enabled a more elaborate intolerance of feminist dissenters, as I just personally experienced. Twitter, especially, has energized the angry extremes of feminism in the same way it has energized Trump and his supporters: the loudest, angriest, most simplifying voices are elevated and rendered normal or mainstream.

Hit and Run – Motor Torpedo Boats in World War 1 I THE GREAT WAR Special

Filed under: Britain, Europe, History, Military, WW1 — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 04:00

The Great War
Published on 5 Feb 2018

The Naval arms race of the early 20th century certainly meant that battleships got ever bigger and more powerful. But there is a David to every Goliath and so Motor Torpedo Boats were developed and used for “hit and run” style operations by both the British and the Italian Navy. Especially, the Italians used their Motoscafo armato silurante (MAS) with great success against the Austro-Hungarian Navy.

The “Socialist Caucus” of the US “Libertarian” Party

Filed under: Liberty, Politics, USA — Tags: , , , , — Nicholas @ 03:00

L. Neil Smith is unhappy with the US Libertarian Party, but this is nothing new — he’s been against the party’s long drift away from philosophical libertarian principles and policies for decades. However, after hearing that the party had turned down Ron Paul and Andrew Napolitano as speakers at the next national convention at the urging of a pack of drooling morons calling themselves the “Socialist Caucus of the Libertarian Party”:

The first article I read (in a movement publication) about the current situation wanted to claim that Ron started the libertarian movement, or at least the party, and maybe set the Moon and stars in the sky, but that’s not true, and I don’t believe that kindly Dr. Paul would ever make a claim like that for himself. It overlooks the lives and lifelong labor, decades earlier, of freedom-fighters like Leonard Reed, Ayn Rand, John Hospers, and Roger Lea MacBride (look them up) not to overlook Dave Nolan. Nevertheless, Ron has been an integral member of the tribe that calls itself “libertarian” for more than forty years, and was such a consistently libertarian member of Congress that his less-principled colleagues (when they weren’t asking him how to vote) called him “Dr. No”.

Thus, to proclaim with grand stupidity, as LP Convention Coordinator Daniel Hayes does (whoever he is), that the former Congressman has no idea what the Party stands for, speaks of abysmal ignorance and profound disrespect. The fact that this ass-clown is also an At Large member of the Libertarian Party National Committee, shows what massive trouble the Party is in. Trouble that it is very likely not to survive.

And now I’ll confess to some ignorance of my own. When I started this article, I thought I knew who Judge Andrew Napolitano is. I have always enjoyed seeing him on FOX, visiting with the ladies. However I followed my own advice and looked him up, in Wikipedia, because that’s easiest. This guy is an unapologetic, uncompromising libertarian on steroids. I urge you to look him up, yourself, you will be amazed.

Dr. Paul, it appears, is in trouble because he criticized the LP’s laughable 2016 campaign, an effort that only needed another 23 clowns and a tiny car to make the picture complete. Apparently, the Party is now run to cozy up to a vile creature named Mike Shipley, founder of an obscene excrescence called the Socialist Caucus of the Libertarian Party. If I weren’t already out of the Party, that, alone, would cause me to quit. Don’t the teachings of Murray Rothbard and Ludwig von Mises mean anything anymore? Socialism is the “philosophy” that murdered two hundred million people in the 20th century and there is no difference in principle between it and the blackest, most evil communism that ever existed. Besides a profound and willful historical blindness, what mental illness afflicts low, crawling organisms like this Shipley? Or those who tolerate him and welcome him into the ideological home that others (and betters) built?

This is what comes of claiming in the lilting rich and fruity falsetto voice of Political Correctness, that there are “right” libertarians and “left” libertarians, What bloody nonsense. There are, in fact, only libertarians, those governed by the Principle of Non-Aggression (which the LP has tried to toss overboard every minute of the past twenty years), and those non-libertarians who are not. There is also, apparently, a creature called Nicholas Sarwark, the National Chairman who, according to the article I read, thinks Bernie Sanders is a libertarian. I looked him up, too; he’s a typical product of the confused Arizona politics that gave us John McCain, Jeff Flake, and Jan Brewer. He is on record having called the Ludwig von Mises Institute a Nazi organization and wouldn’t know a real libertarian if it walked up to him and pissed in his ear. The fact that he’s been “embedded” in the LP for so long (look him up, too) is a further symptom of its dire distress.

Years ago, when the LP nominated a candidate of dubious integrity who handed out over a million dollars in campaign contributions to his cronies and family as “consultant fees”, I ran against him in one state (Arizona, again) to deprive the LP of 50-state ballot status, something they seemed to think was important. It wasn’t much, and many people still hate me for it, but a statement had to be made against corruption. I made it and I will never regret it.

This current disaster is the direct result of tolerating Political Correctness even a little bit. It is no different, in principle, from inviting Anti-Fa into your living room. The LP needs a purge, and then the system of internal education I proposed almost 40 years ago. Until then, Hayes, Shipley. Sarwark, and others of your collectivist ilk, watch your ballots for something called “The Real Libertarian Party” — and see the LP vote split right down the middle.

Tank Chats #22 Mark V Two Star

Filed under: Britain, History, Military, WW1 — Tags: — Nicholas @ 02:00

The Tank Museum
Published on 10 Jun 2016

Mark V** – A longer tank for wider trenches.

When the Germans realised what a threat tanks could be, they made their trenches wider to trap them; one answer to this was to build longer tanks and the Mark V was stretched by six feet to create the Mark V*. As an interim solution this was adequate but a further improved version, the Mark V** was designed for 1919.

Find out more about the First World War on the Tank Museum’s Centenary blog, Tank 100 http://www.tank100.com

QotD: The original goal of the minimum wage

Filed under: Economics, Government, History, Quotations, USA — Tags: , , — Nicholas @ 01:00

For progressives, a legal minimum wage had the useful property of sorting the unfit, who would lose their jobs, from the deserving workers, who would retain their jobs. Royal Meeker, a Princeton economist who served as Woodrow Wilson’s U.S. Commissioner of Labor, opposed a proposal to subsidize the wages of poor workers for this reason. Meeker preferred a wage floor because it would disemploy unfit workers and thereby enable their culling from the work force.

Thomas Leonard, “Eugenics and Economics in the Progressive Era”, Journal of Economic Perspectives, 2005-09.

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