Naked Opportunism

So after Bernie Sanders bombed at Netroots because of his incapacity to say “Black lives matter”, Hillary Clinton posted a message on Facebook that says “Black lives matter.”

Of course, it’s great that she managed to squeeze it out (after refusing to do so and hiding behind the profoundly idiotic “All lives matter” only a couple of weeks ago). But God, does she have to do this naked opportunism thing in such an obvious and contemptible way? This reminds me of the worst moments of her campaign back in 2008 (“Oh, how dare he say anything against guns? I crawled out of my mother’s womb with an AK-47.”)

The Silence of the Shams: #WCSJ2015 Falsely Reported Sir Tim Hunt

People, you’ve got to read this. Remember this huge scandal around the Nobel – winning scientist who was accused of denigrating female scientists? It was all completely manufactured by scuzzy journalists poised to exploit the public ‘ s love of Twitter outrage. It’s absolutely shocking. The guy was vilified, and now the world has moved to another fake outrage and nobody cares that this was all just a setup.


Professor Nicholas Nassim Taleb’s bestseller, Antifragile, contains at its start a note on ethics:

If you see fraud, and do not say fraud, you are a fraud.

When I read this quote, it jumped out at me; I remember gasping with surprise. This was exactly the concept I had been looking for to sum up the “reporting” of the leaders of the ‘World Conference of Science Journalists” on Sir Tim Hunt’s brief toast in Seoul.

After he’d finished, there was this deathly, deathly silence.

Very clearly, nobody was laughing – everybody was stony-faced. – Connie St. Louis, lecturer in journalism, City University, London

Professor Taleb, who became famous for his development of Black Swan theory and the resulting global bestseller, had been one of the earliest, strongest defenders of Sir Tim Hunt, announcing his contempt for the actions of UCL without due process, and boycotting the university under its present leadership…

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The Fallacy of Forgiveness

The brilliant Alice Miller on the fallacy of forgiveness:

Some therapists work under the influence of various interpretations culled from both Western and Oriental religions, which preach forgiveness to the once-mistreated child. Thereby, they create a new vicious circle for people who, from their earliest years, have been caught in the vicious circle of pedagogy . This, they refer to as “therapy”. In so doing, they lead them into a trap from which there is no escape, the same trap that once rendered their natural protests impossible, thus causing the illness in the first place. Because such therapists. . . cannot help patients to resolve the consequences of the traumatization they have suffered, they offer them traditional morality instead.

Remember, a therapist who is a professional and not a quack will never ever ever push you to forgive.

The idea that forgiving is somehow morally superior to not forgiving, to holding on to a grudge, to feeling anger is a means of social control. And every time you praise somebody for forgiving or push yourself to forgive you reinforce structures of oppression.

See more of this great article here.

Political Activism

In mixed company, I expressed concern that young people had no interest in political activism.

“No, we are very politically active!” a bright young creature interrupted me. “I literally don’t know a single person my age who doesn’t use hashtags! I have participated in a hashtag campaign last week, for example.”

Keep in Mind

If somebody is treating you badly, it can never be your fault. There can never be an ounce, an hair-breadth of your fault in your being mistreated by anybody. If somebody is mistreating you, it’s completely, totally, utterly 100% about them. If you never existed on this planet, they’d be doing exactly the same thing to somebody else.

And another reminder: there is no such thing as criticizing a person for their own good. Somebody who nags, criticizes, points out your “defects”, puts you down, reminds you of every obstacle that exists in your path, etc. is doing this for their own good, not yours. And their good consists of hurting people, which tells us a lot about this sort of individual. 

What’s Hillary Doing?

Does anybody understand what Hillary Clinton is doing any longer? The election is hers to win but she seems bent on minimizing her chances. First, there was that very off-putting CNN interview. Then she decided not to show up for Netroots Nation.

And it’s kind of disgraceful that “one-track Bernie” (with all due respect) is drawing crowds that are twice as large. Hillary ‘ s campaign is way too low key compared to what it should be at this point. When was the last time you read an interesting piece that discussed her? In the meanwhile, interesting articles that reference Walker abound. Even though he’s not mentioned positively in them, the crucial part at this point is that he does get mentioned.