Why America is Dead – Pt. 9.5: More Generally, The War on Knowledge

February 28, 2010

Yes, if you’re transsexual, you have to deal with the fact-free anti-science of the Blanchard-Bailey-Dreger neo-criminal syndicate (I would provide hotlinks, but if I tried to list them all my hand would fall off before I got to the more specific point of my post.)

But we transsexuals are not alone in being continually attacked by anti-knowledge.

From The Inverse Square Blog on the right wing’s warriors against real knowledge:

[T]hey stake their claim to authority through an assertion of a peculiar kind of expertise, in particular, the ability to interpret technical knowledge and to divine social patterns, while at the same time decrying the authority of the more specialized skills that produce facts and interpretations with which they disagree.More simply:  no one knows anything except me.

Remember how National Review gave a glowing review to The Man Who Would be Queen?  One can only imagine the size of the crown it will present to Alice ‘Queen of the Seld-Declared Tranny-Censorship Victims’ Dreger when her Guggenheim funded masturbation-in-print-form is published.)

But I digress…

The animating motive behind such bathos is not simply self-aggrandizement (though that is surely a feature and not a bug).  Rather it is aimed at discrediting genuine expertise, actual specialized knowledge and/or craft skills.  Both men (and many others) are actively and overtly trying to reclaim power for an aristocracy of birth, institutions, or certain interests, and hence find claims of authority independent of unearned descent or association a deep threat.

Simply:  as long as, say, Paul Krugman, exists to tell them they don’t know what they are talking about, then those who would rather accelerate the transfer of wealth from the middle to the top, have to find ways to deny his credibility, his authority-born-of-knowledge to label their stupid claims for the folly they are.

More broadly, the game now is to paint one side — the side that did not author our current disaster — as a hopelessly out of touch and inherently incapable group of impractical experts, folks who know only theory and have none of the so-called common sense needed to recognize that the succour of the rich and powerful is the alpha and omega of sound policy.  It’s Spiro Agnew updated for the digital age….

I proudly declare that you can take my nattering-nabob negativism from me when you can pry it from my cold dead hands (and mouth and keyboard…)!


If You’re Transgender, You Don’t

February 26, 2010

More on the ‘yet another reason for already-overly-privileged gays and lesbian Marylanders to avoid rectifying the state’s 2001 gay-only atrocity rights law’ marriage-maybe AG opinion – this time from the Washington Post:

“When I looked at the newspaper headline this morning, I was just stunned,” said Tibby Middleton, 71, who lives in Frederick with Barbara Kenny, her partner of 44 years. “I was very moved by it, really. I never thought I would live in any place where I would be treated with dignity and respect.”

Well, if you’re trans in living in Maryland, then…

you still don’t…

and, because of this fresh injection of Marriage Derangement Syndrome, aren’t likely to any time soon.


Why America is Dead – Pt. 9: Some People Will Actually Believe Trent Franks

February 26, 2010

This speaks for itself – and should be self-disproving, but…

Arizona Congressman Trent Franks told blogger Mike Stark that African Americans were much better off under slavery. 


Utah Poised to Criminalize Being Female

February 26, 2010

Of course, that’s not how the bill is titled.

But that is what the bill will do if it becomes law.

Utah just became the first state in the U.S. to criminalize miscarriage and punish women for having or seeking an illegal abortion.  Utah’s “Criminal Miscarriage” law:

  • expands the definition of illegal abortion to include miscarriages
  • removes immunity protections for women who have or seek illegal abortions
  • treats women as presumptive criminals and leaves them open to criminal prosecution

But even among states that punish illegal abortions, this “Criminal Miscarriage” law is unique.  It not only punishes individuals who perform illegal procedures; it punishes women.

I’ve long thought that one of the biggest mistakes made by the pro-choice movement was to cease using what I think was probably THE ad that would convince even many anti-choice-oids that abortion should be legal.

Sadly, I can’t even find a copy of the ad; I think it ran in Rolling Stone a few times back in the 1990s, but I can’t recall for sure.

It was quite simple.

The image was of two Dragnet-backlot cop figures standing at the front door of a residence.  The door is partially open.  A woman inside the house peeks out the door and, in looking at the cops, has a scared, horrified look on her face.

The ad’s tagline?

“Do you want to have the police investigating your next miscarriage?”

Welcome to Utah – where, if the bill is signed into law, all women will instantly become presumed criminals.

And to think…

Sarah Palin isn’t even president yet.


Not Just a ‘Simpsons’ Punchline

February 24, 2010

I’m not a Patriots fan – but this does make me feel old:

Mosi Tatupu, one of the most popular players in New England Patriots history known for his inspired special teams play, has died.

Tatupu died Tuesday at Sturdy Memorial Hospital in Attleboro, hospital spokeswoman Ashley O’Brien said. He was 54.

I saw the Pats play at the Astrodome in a Monday Night Football game against the Oilers in 1980.  I recently found the photos (110 pocket cam) that I took at that game.  Unfortunately, this is the only one I could find that had Tatupu in it at all:

No, he’s not one of the three illuminated by the flash.  But, if you look close – at the far left – you can see him in the shadows.

Yes…

In 1980, you could get that close to the players at NFL games.


And Sometimes a Quack is Quiet

February 24, 2010

No, I’m not talking about Alice Dreger or Michael Bailey – neither of whom are smart enough to be quiet.

Instead…

… its just someone I ran across at the Como Park Zoo in St. Paul a decade or so ago.


Sometimes a Banana is Just a Banana

February 24, 2010

Particularly when the banana is peeled…

… and its remains are sitting on top of a fire hydrant in Minnesota approximately a decade ago.

You may now return to your regularly-scheduled cynicism.