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the assertion that the Communists did the West a favor by building the Wall Undoubtedly, the real reason.
Toggle Commented 2 hours ago on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
I wouldn’t say it was off-topic at all. Ah, yes,I suppose so - I think I said it just because it was a personal anecdote. And the fact that Lenny’s rhetorical dance, and that of the Antifa boosters, bears some resemblance to the rote contortions of the “equity” industry scarcely needs pointing out. Something very much on topic I would say, but in news that should come as no surprise to anyone: Newly published research indicates that people who more frequently signal their victimhood (whether real, exaggerated, or false) are more likely to lie and cheat for material gain and denigrate others as a means to get ahead. While a healthy degree of scepticism needs to be maintained in the reporting of "research" such as this, I think lived experience seems to bear this out quite clearly without the need for statistical evidence of the same.
Toggle Commented 2 hours ago on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
(Off Topic) When I was at high school, the Berlin Wall came down about the same time a guy I knew, let's call him "Lenny", befriended the Socialist Workers who at that time regularly used to hang around selling papers in the city centre. Lenny's parents had divorced a few years earlier and although it bore it well in public everyone who knew him even more than passing well knew that it had left him angry, frustrated and resentful. It was about the point where his mother started seeing someone that he found himself welcomed with open arms by the Comrades of the Socialist Worker, who gave him a place to crash when it all got a bit much at home and who had a ready supply of fags, booze and, let's not forget, girls, some of the older by a few years and studying at one or other of the local universities. So one day, at school, I'm studying in the school library with a girl from my class when Lenny appears round the corner, his eyes lighting up with delight at finding us there. Unbidden, out of nowhere, he quickly catches us up with his recent reversion to Socialism - bear in mind the the visible destruction of the Berlin Wall is being almost nightly televised at this time - and then he says: "I'm brilliant at debating me! Go on! Debate me! Ask me anything! I can win any argument!" Neither me nor the girl I was with in the library showed any interest at all, but he persisted and in the end he had to go with why Communism was superior to anything the West have to offer and the girl (let's call her "Whitney") took the bait. Whitney - "If it was so good in East Germany, why did so many try to escape?" Lenny - "They didn't! No one tried to escape!" Whitney - "But it's on film - there's TV footage of it!" Lenny - "That's all faked by the CIA!" Whitney - "But some people were killed trying to get across!" Lenny - "It was all fake! Those graves are empty!" It continued in this vein for some time until he suddenly got up with a triumphant flourish, declaring himself to have been the "winner" in the debate. As I hope is clear, it wasn't that he was "brilliant at debating" as claimed, just that he had been trained by his newfound Comrades that the best way to deal with lines of argument tricky to the Socialist position (otherwise known as "facts") was to lie - lie loudly, lie brazenly, and lie in volume. Mount a barrage of lies one on top of another as fast as possible until, beyond exasperated, the other person simply walks away at which point you can declare yourself the victor. I was reminded of this episode just this morning while looking at Andy Ngo's Twitter feed. Every time he posts a video of Antifa engaging in mayhem and violence, you can find at least half a dozen replies or so under any one video such as this: Show the destruction. I just see a march. Or this: Looks like one person doing it while walking As opposed to multiple/“their riot.”) Pointless and annoying, and so is this tweet Or this: Maybe one very bright flashlight? Stop the presses I should be used to this by now, but this degree of effrontery still leaves me speechless. And the latest on Ngo's feed? How one attempt at a civil conversation came to an abrupt and violent end. But remember, what you're seeing there, in that woman being pinned to the ground while being beaten senseless, can't be fascism because "Antifa" literally means "against fascism". Ergo she was a fascist and deserved it.
Toggle Commented 5 hours ago on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
It's all so confusing ... Clarity appears: It’s worth bearing in mind that grand and fashionable causes - say, “social justice,” or feminism, or “critical race” woo – often attract people who aren’t happy with themselves – who, shall we say, have issues.
Toggle Commented yesterday on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
Silly me, I didn't know that translating-while-white was just another act of white supremacy. Who are the racists again? It's all so confusing ...
Toggle Commented yesterday on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
Who could have foreseen this? I have to say even as a man I find gender neutral bathrooms deeply uncomfortable and avoid using them whenever possible.
Toggle Commented yesterday on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
"Educator" Can't quite work out whether what's more alarming in that video. Is it the signs of a deranged mind behind the blank almost unblinking eyes? Or the lyrics? Or is it in wondering just how ample she almost certainly must be?
Toggle Commented 2 days ago on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
O/T Gen Z mocking Millenials is my new favourite genre of navel-gazing, and they’re not wrong (except about centre partings). It’s not our fault we’re so cringingly pure. But I don’t think they quite understand why? Look, Gen Z, we were trained our whole lives to survive a future that exploded the moment we hit adulthood. We’re as fucked as you are, but we didn’t see it coming. We didn’t know how badly we were being lied to. You lot did, and our job is to help you unfuck the world. We had none of the skills to cope with the kind of adulthood we were dealt, and we’ve had to make it up as we go along while paying down huge debts and somehow not becoming arseholes. Forgive us if we comfort read and talk to our doggos like the babies we can’t afford to have. I bet you'll never guess which mid-30s media pundit, author, journalist, and LA-based screenwriter (who in spite of all those boasts still somehow manages to confess to having "none of the skills to cope with the kind of adulthood [they] were dealt") wrote this What do you mean you knew who it was?
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on The Lockdown Diaries (9) at davidthompson
... you may wish to watch video of the actual interaction [ Applies washcloth to DAYS WITHOUT HATE CRIME HOAX sign next to bar. Rubs out previous figure. ] [ Chalks in a large, round ZERO on the dark spot in its place. ] “It can’t be this insane. Maybe it’s me. Maybe I’m just not getting it…” I need a drink. Pour one for yourself while you're at it, my good man.
Toggle Commented 7 days ago on Fishing For Status at davidthompson
You’ve Seen What We’re Doing ... Is it any wonder conspiracy theories are proliferating when everywhere you care to look there are visible signs of what seems to be a successful takeover? No shots were reported, no Post Offices or Television towers occupied, no walls pulverised, yet apparently here we are.
Ms Heffernan’s tweets are now protected. If you listen very carefully, you might be able to hear the gears turning in Ms Heffernan’s head as she starts to formulate an opinion piece on the horror's of the mob and the dangers faced by US journalists for being honest, truthful in their pursuit of justice. Or something. In any event, it reminds me of this, which, in spite of everything that's been going on over the last four or five years especially, I still cannot quite believe actually happened.
Yes Starting to think it might be because it's an example of life spontaneously imitating an Adam Curtis documentary.
Toggle Commented Feb 5, 2021 on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
Modernity is a hell of a thing. There's something almost perfect about that clip that I just can't quite put my finger on. But whatever that perfection is it will inevitably soon get lost as the waves of memes roll in to take control.
Toggle Commented Feb 5, 2021 on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
And so, because of this clown’s self-imagined altruism - which is to say, his preening and moral cowardice - the armed carjackers will learn a perverse lesson about violating the law-abiding, at gunpoint, and getting away with it. They will be emboldened further and incentivised to see others as mere prey, people from whom things can be taken. All of that right there. Especially the part about learning "a perverse lesson" since as if the situation weren't quite bad enough already, it turns out the carjackers are either still of high school age - just imagine teaching them for a moment - or can only have very recently graduated (assuming they ever attended in the first place): [P]olice found the stolen car in traffic on the 5100 block of West Madison and pulled it over. Officers detained the four occupants: a 19-year-old man, a 19-year-old woman, a 15-year-old boy, and a 15-year-old girl. Quite what this might suggest about some two decades or more of education policies designed to disrupt the so-called "school-to-prison pipeline" is hard to say exactly. That said, I might hazard the suggestion that designing an education system around solutions to wholly imaginary causes for very real social problems is likely to prove unreliable at best as a recipe for success.
Toggle Commented Feb 4, 2021 on Setting An Example, You See at davidthompson
... if you seriously doubt ... Not quite sure how you managed to arrive at serious doubt from "Not entirely clear" and "leaving open the possibility". But in any event, no, what you refer to has not escaped my notice.
Toggle Commented Feb 2, 2021 on Because It Can Be Done at davidthompson
“I’m going to be turning toilet paper into drinkable alcohol.” [ Peers at contents in glass in entirely new way. Shrugs. ] Speaking of liquor, you may need a stiff drink or three to fortify yourself when reading the replies to this here, such as this one and this one, also that one, from a therapist no less*, and this other one here. And that's just the tip of the iceberg - they're having themselves quite the party over there. *Not entirely clear what kind of therapist, leaving open the possibility that this is some kind of homeopathic healer.
Toggle Commented Feb 2, 2021 on Because It Can Be Done at davidthompson
[ From the kitchen, sounds of a pedal bin. ] Ah! You've started keeping them in one of those Victorian enamel bread tins? I knew if I stuck around long enough the place would eventually get more upmarket.
Toggle Commented Feb 1, 2021 on The Downtrodden at davidthompson
Via Nikw211 Does that entitle me to a free sausage roll?
Toggle Commented Feb 1, 2021 on The Downtrodden at davidthompson
“ He cried in a whisper at some image, at some vision—he cried out twice, a cry that was no more than a breath: “‘The horror! The horror!” More from the seemingly never ending postmodern live performance art remake of Heart of Darkness's colonial expansion and exploitation: “Every class this year has had an obsessive focus on race and identity, ‘racist cop’ reenactments in science, ‘de-centering whiteness’ in art class, learning about white supremacy and sexuality in health class.” That comes from an anxious parent who had written to John McWhorter after he'd written about their child's school, Dalton, in New York. In the same blog post here, McWhorter adds this: In the Atlantic piece I wrote of how “antiracist” protest shut down Bryn Mawr last semester. The protest actually spread to allied schools Haverford and Swarthmore. I have it on good authority that at Swarthmore, the President simply folded arms and said “no” to the protesters, upon which they basically folded in their tails and went away. Why? Because the President is a black woman, Valerie Smith. This is key here: she knew she could respond to melodramatic performance art with the refusal it deserved because no one could call her racist. As in: the reason Kim Cassidy over at Bryn Mawr caved, snuff-video style, to the protests on her campus was because she was deeply afraid of being tarred as a racist on social media, along with attracting that same judgment to her institution. To wit: being black allows you to respond to this agitprop with basic sense, including affording these performance artists the fundamental respect of calling them on their bullshit. If it is the case that all it takes to shut down this idiocy is to be of one colour rather than another, then perhaps needless to say the real racists here have exposed themselves. I tend to think, though, that you do not have to be non-white in order to "simply fold your arms and say “no” to the protesters".
Toggle Commented Feb 1, 2021 on The Downtrodden at davidthompson
A historical dictionary of science fiction. Related
Toggle Commented Jan 31, 2021 on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
[T]he school “is currently in the grips of a mania” that has led to an unprecedented amount of “division, paranoia, and hatred” within the institution [ ... ] employees are afraid of being labeled “racist” and getting denounced on social media. According to the student activists, to disagree with any part of their agenda is to admit to racism. It's precisely because such reports as this now seem so unexceptional that makes them worth reading. Even more so in this case since the school in question is: the school of choice for the world’s elites, teaching the children of diplomats and leading figures in international banking, finance, technology, and business at a cost of up to $44,000 a year If this is how, as children and adolescents, they are capable of treating people whose names they know, whose faces they recognise, and who they interact with on a regular basis, just imagine the kind of crude, stunted stuff that will have to pass for something like empathy when they inevitably move into the ranks of elite influencers in business and politics. It'll be like something out of a J. G. Ballard novel.
Toggle Commented Jan 30, 2021 on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
Well that is what is in dispute. Yes, you're right - I should have checked the details more carefully before posting. Here is a summary of the events. Unfortunately, I do not seem able to access that New York Times piece, but nonetheless I did get details wrong. (Not that I think that I'm a journalist or anything, just that it's the right thing to do).
Toggle Commented Jan 30, 2021 on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
BLM nomination though...I have been rather outspoken, for quite some time, as to the true nature of BLM. That nature being extortionists. That more people cannot seem to see what is an obvious hustle of brazen self-promoting opportunists often leaves me genuinely bewildered. Its major proponents seem to me to be little different from so-called spiritual mediums. Just as someone like the late Derek Acorah used to claim that he had a direct channel to the dearly departed of members of the audience in whatever run-down seaside town he was in that week, the likes of Sean King and so on seem able to find racism - sorry, systemic racism - in the most unlikely of places. This is not to deny police brutality continues to this day or that more or less overtly racist policies were carried out in the past. But since 1995 or so at least such claims have become increasingly absurd in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. The hue and cry surrounding Darren Wilson's legitimate use of (lethal) force against Mike Brown is still the classic example. I find it hard to put myself in the shoes of people who support BLM and to see through their eyes. The nearest I think I can get is the genuine anger that I have felt and still feel at the astonishingly long list of mostly Islamist attacks, Vienna 2020 seems to have passed almost completely without notice so many have there been, or responses to them, such as Brenton Tarrant's Christchurch massacre. But those are actual terrorists and their actual intent in each case is explicitly to commit murder on families out celebrating with their children (Bastille Day, Nice 2016, 87 dead, 434 injured), children and teenagers at a concert, some with their parents (Manchester, 2017, 23 dead, 1,1017 injured), people enjoying an evening out with friends (the first London Bridge attack, 2017, 11 dead, 48 injured), people running (Boston, 2013, 5 dead, 264 injured) or people praying (Christchurch, 2019, 51 dead, 40 injured). I find it next to impossible, if not actually so, to see those attacks as no different from Mike Brown or Breonna Taylor. If you are rude and abusive to a police officer who calls out to you, then punch that officer in the face and try to rest his gun away from him, then charge at that same policeman after he has already managed to shoot you once, it is hard to suggest that your untimely end is a consequence of an act of terror. Similarly, if you hear three knocks on the door of your drug dealer boyfriend's apartment accompanied by voices telling you it is local law enforcement, it's not an act of terror if you lose your life while shooting at self-identified police officers. Tragic? Of course. Terrorist action by a white supremacist police state? Err ..., no!
Toggle Commented Jan 30, 2021 on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
A historical dictionary of science fiction. Anything in there about transdimensional portals into alternate realities? It's just I think we may have passed through one without realising it.
Toggle Commented Jan 29, 2021 on Friday Ephemera at davidthompson
One can only hope this is an elaborate hoax. The significance of it if not ... H/t Titania McGrath