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The political interests of women are often overlooked by both the right and the left.

The bullshit that goes on because we cannot advance the idea that females are a distinct class of individuals in society who exist solely for themselves.  Not in relationship to the family, not in relationship to their reproductive capacity, and most certainly not as an object of desirability for the men-folk.  Yet, the old perspectives continue to linger and fester making it difficult for women to fully establish their humanity in society.

The latest assault on female rights and personhood in society has come from “progressive” Left.  The notion that because some gender confused males don’t have a uterus, we should erase the terms ‘women’ and ‘females’ in the language of society in a quixotic effort to be more “inclusive”.  To explain how erasing women in society is a good thing let’s look at what “Kenny Ethan Jones” has to say –

 

“Why should we respect and embrace phrases like “people who menstruate”?

When we solely use women to describe people who experience periods, we exclude everyone who doesn’t identify as a woman from the conversation. I’m very familiar with how that exclusion feels and the consequences it can have.

I am a man in [for clarity, ‘Kenny’ is female], I am trans and I sometimes experience periods.

Growing up, periods were my biggest personal struggle. I mean the pain, the bleeding — that sucked. But the most painful part was the internal shame I felt knowing what was happening to my body was something the world only associates with women and girls.

Every scientific study explaining the biology of menstrual cycles, every bit of advertising for period-related products, every piece of language I had ever seen or heard reinforced one thing: boys don’t have periods. I’d known I didn’t feel like a girl long before I ever experienced periods, but I didn’t have any other way of seeing what was happening to my body outside of that one, gendered angle. I felt alienated, isolated. A bodily function that I had no control over caused me to be in conflict with my identity as a man, all because of society’s language and viewpoint on periods.

Although this tweet was very disheartening for me as a trans man, there are plenty of other people who benefit from gender-inclusive language being used when it comes to the period conversation. In fact, linking womanhood so closely with menstruation becomes problematic when you realize how many cisgender women don’t experience periods, and who are no less woman because of it.”

You see?  It is the gender religious magic in action.  My self declaration should have more importance in society than the medical and biological facts of the matter.  It gives me pause when I see an individual so wholly dedicated to a delusional point of view – but on that individual level her views on her gender and her bodily functions are fine.  Just like when I see the nice people in white tops and black pants roll up to talk to me about Jebus and Magic Hats, I can politely disagree with what they say and their take on reality, and then they go away (off to find a more receptive victim to lovebomb into their cause).

But tell this gender acolyte to move on with their gender-magic… Well, one should not do that as it qualifies *somehow* as bigotry and hatred on a near cosmic scale.  Let’s define bigotry quickly here, just to help frame what is going on.

  I choose not to share in the belief that human beings can change their sex.  A man who calls himself a women is still a man.  A woman who calls herself a man is still a woman.  This two statements though completely true are somehow controversial.  Sticking with the version of reality that is closest to the material truth doesn’t seem like bad worldview to hold.  I will not participate in gender-magic and really, any ideology that is not moored in the societal reality we all share.  And therein lies the rub – gender acolytes won’t accept no for an answer, it is incumbent on *you* to accept *their* version of how sex and gender work.

Allow me to say unequivocally, they can fuck right off with their attempted imposition of their beliefs on me.  Engage with as much gender-delusion as you please, but keep me out it.  At least the formally religious have the good sense to go away once asked they respect the boundaries of others.  The gender religious, not so much.

Any ideology or religion that doesn’t respect other’s thoughts and boundaries is dangerous.  Gender ideology (GI) is a clear and present danger to women because (GI) seeks to define the term woman (adult human female) out of existence.

 

Gender ideology is totalitarian in nature. There can be no debate, no compromise, and especially no questioning its tenets. Regular everyday people do not realize the poison pill that they swallow when they are told to ‘be kind’ and comply with the reactionary bullshit that is gender ideology. These are some of the questions that you are not supposed to ask, because the answer is almost always ‘because I say so’. So I’ve found a nice chart that will easily identify those that need attitude readjustments so you, my gentle readers, might not be alarmed when faced with this current batch of misogynistic nonsense that has gained so much traction in society.

Oh, and terf is an acronym – Trans Exclusive Radical Feminist – it is a slur like witch, bitch, c*nt et cetera used on uppity females that will not comply with the reactionary bullshit that is gender ideology.

Messaging in society differs depending on which sex class you happen to inhabit.  I for one, have never experience this much fucking elation eating crunchy green water.

Andrew Bacevich writes in Tom’s Dispatch about how the Boomer Generation mythos has affected US policy making for much of recent history.

 

“In Washington, policymakers have shown little inclination to consider the possibility that the United States itself might be guilty of doing evil. In effect, the virtuous intentions implicit in “Never Again” inoculated the United States against the virus to which ordinary nations were susceptible. V-E Day seemingly affirmed that America was anything but ordinary.

Here, then, we arrive at one explanation for the predicament in which the United States now finds itself. In a recent article in the New York Times, journalist Katrin Bennhold wondered how it could be that, when it came to dealing with Covid-19, “the country that defeated fascism in Europe 75 years ago” now finds itself “doing a worse job protecting its citizens than many autocracies and democracies” globally.

Yet it might just be that events that occurred 75 years ago in Europe no longer have much bearing on the present. The country that defeated Hitler’s version of fascism (albeit with considerable help from others) has since allowed its preoccupation with fascists, quasi-fascists, and other ne’er-do-wells to serve as an excuse for letting other things slip, particularly here in the homeland.

The United States is fully capable of protecting its citizens. Yet what the present pandemic drives home is this: doing so, while also creating an environment in which all citizens can flourish, is going to require a radical revision of what we still, however inaccurately, call “national security” priorities. This does not mean turning a blind eye to mass murder. Yet the militarization of U.S. policy that occurred in the wake of V-E Day has for too long distracted attention from more pressing matters, not least among them creating a way of life that is equitable and sustainable. This perversion of priorities must now cease.

So, yes, let’s mark this V-E Day anniversary with all due solemnity. Yet 75 years after the collapse of the Third Reich, the challenge facing the United States is not “Never Again.” It’s “What Now?”

For the moment at least, Tom and I are still around. Yet “our times” — the period that began when World War II ended — have run their course. The “new times” upon which the nation has now embarked will pose their own distinctive challenges, as the Covid-19 pandemic makes unmistakably clear. Addressing those challenges will require leaders able to free themselves from a past that has become increasingly irrelevant.”

 

Will this latest pandemic foster a new set of priorities across the globe?  Many people would like to think so, but I think they underestimate the potency of the current establishment and how entrenched they are in the societal disequilibrium they have created.  I most certainly do hope for a new normal, but I’m not optimistic about it actually coming to fruition.

One of the many calculations going on in the background within varied historical contexts is the relationship between efficiency and resilience.  Consider arch construction from Roman times and now.

The Roman arch has a distinct set of design principles that focus on the utilitarian principles of usefulness and longevity in public infrastructure.

 

The modern arch.

 

Same concept, but now a different formula has been employed, as different ends are in mind. Aversion to overbuilding, a focus on form rather than utilitarian concerns.  Public architecture most certainly, but will these arches last centuries?  Doubtful.

 

So, from here we can extrapolate the notion of the interplay between efficiency and resiliency, the Roman arch being the model of resiliency and the modern arch being the exemplar of efficiency.  Neither is wrong per say but rather, each work displays what qualities are needed at a particular point in societal history.

Fast forward to the present.  And yes, the present we speak of is the Covid-19 Pandemic of 2020.  Like the Spanish Flu before it, the Coronavirus is rapidly burning through the various world populations.

The societal systems we have built are mostly modelled on the basis of maximizing efficiency, as efficient systems with capitalist societies are usually quite profitable.  Jill Richardson writing in Counterpunch describes the model we are using for much of our economy.

“I went to business school 20 years ago. We learned about the efficiency of “just-in-time” supply management.

The goal was to cut costs by ordering inventory “just in time.” That way you don’t pay for all the extra, costly warehouses to store weeks or months of supplies. The example we were given was that if a certain large corporation’s supply chain shut down, they’d only have enough materials on hand to keep up production for four days.

Efficient? Yes. Resilient? No.”

Economic design decisions, like societal design decisions reflect the social priorities and needs of a people at a particular time.  When paradigm shifting events happen, like a pandemic, the shortfalls of the system are revealed.

“My business school taught social Darwinism: survival of the fittest. The beauty of capitalism, we were taught, is that everyone competes for business and the competition drives innovation, while the least efficient companies go out of business.

It was an outlook that Ayn Rand would endorse: the most generous way to behave is to be selfish, because by doing your part to compete, you are doing your part to drive innovation and efficiency for everyone.

This crisis is pulling back the curtain on unfettered laissez-faire capitalism, showing that we are actually interconnected. And it’s far more serious than toilet paper.

A stark shortage of personal protective equipment has left health care workers without enough to go around. In my town, hospitals are organizing to receive donations from anyone who has a box of face masks, hand sanitizer, and gloves at home.

In short, they’re relying on community resilience where for-profit efficiency failed.”

Our capitalism system is a marvelous at maximizing efficiency, but when the base rules and global situation changes, the once successful model (should) quickly lose its lustre.

“In normal times, we justify a form of capitalism in which competition means accepting inequality and suffering in the name of improving efficiency for all. We accept that some face poverty, hunger, and homelessness, and we’re okay with it because of a myth that it’s natural, or better for everyone (or else caused by the moral failings of those who suffer).

Continuing to believe that myth now will cause millions of deaths worldwide. Instead, our only hope is pulling together to help others through shared sacrifice and collective action.

Resilience isn’t always profitable. But we need it now more than ever.”

We will need to adapt our models and societies for this new base set of conditions.  A foundational requirement in the new normal will be building a higher level of cooperation in society and the fostering the willingness to critically evaluate the old paradigm and correct the models that do not jive with the new social reality.  Building resilience into our societies must become a priority otherwise the pandemic lessons of 1918, and 2020 will need to be relearned at a great cost to human life and progress.

 

 

” Whenever we try to rearrange natural systems along the lines of a machine or a factory, whether by raising too many pigs in one place or too many almond trees, whatever we may gain in industrial efficiency, we sacrifice in biological resilience. The question is not whether systems this brittle will break down, but when and how, and whether when they do, we’ll be prepared to treat the whole idea of sustainability as something more than a nice word.”

A new model is necessary to mitigate future crisis, it must revolve around the idea that a formula weighted more toward resilience is necessary for a sustainable future.

 

 

 

 

 

Why does society work the way it does?  Why is there such a disconnect between the common people and politics.  Jonathan Cook examines the power structures in our society and how they work.

 

“Rather than thinking in terms of individuals, power is better visualised as the deep waters of a lake, while the powerful are simply the ripples on the surface. The ripples come and go, but the vast body of water below remains untouched.

Superficially, the means by which power conceals itself is through stories. Its needs narratives – mainly about those who appear powerful – to create political and social dramas that distract us from thinking about deep power. But more fundamentally still, power depends on ideology. Ideology cloaks power – in a real sense, it is power – because it is the source of power’s invisibility.

Ideology provides the assumptions that drive our perceptions of the world, that prevent us from questioning why some people were apparently born to rule, or have been allowed to enclose vast estates of what was once everyone’s land, or hoard masses of inherited wealth, or are celebrated for exploiting large numbers of workers, or get away with choking the planet to the point at which life itself asphyxiates.

Phrased like that, none of these practices seems natural. In fact, to a visiting Martian they would look pathologically insane, an irrefutable proof of our self-destructiveness as a species. But these conditions are the unexamined background to our lives , just the way things are and maybe always were. The system.

True, the individuals who benefit from the social and economic policies that uphold this system may occasionally be held to account. Even the policies themselves may occasionably be held up to scrutiny. But the assumptions behind the policies are rarely questioned – certainly not in what we are taught to call the “mainstream”.

That is an amazing outcome given that almost none of us benefit from the system we effectively sanction every time we turn out to vote in an election. Very few of us are rulers, or enjoy enormous wealth, or live on large estates, or own companies that deprive thousands of the fruit of their labours, or profit from destroying life on Earth. And yet the ideology that rationalises all that injustice, inequality and immorality not only stays in place but actually engenders more injustice, more inequality, more immorality year by year.

We watch this all unfold passively, largely indifferently because we believe – we are made to believe – we are powerless.

Regenerating like Dr Who

By now, you may be frustrated that power still lacks a name. Is it not late-stage capitalism? Or maybe neoliberalism? Globalisation? Or neoconservatism? Yes, we can identify it right now as ideologically embedded in all of those necessarily vague terms. But we should remember that it is something deeper still.

Power always has an ideological shape and physical structures. It has both faces. It existed before capitalism, and will exist after it (if capitalism doesn’t kill us first). Human history has consisted of power consolidating and regenerating itself in new form over and over again – like the eponymous hero of the long-running British TV sci-fi series Doctor Who – as different groups have learnt how to harness it, usurp it and put it to self-interested use. Power has been integral to human societies. Now our survival as individuals and as a species depends on our finding a way to reinvent power, to tame it and share it equally between us all – and thereby dissolve it. It is the ultimate challenge.”

To change a system, one needs to understand how it works.

 

 

 

The term gender-neutral is a misleading term.  It is because gender neutral spaces almost always become male spaces due to the previously existing imbalance in society.  Because many women still rightly fear men in restricted spaces, many women avoid gender-neutral spaces because those spaces give males access to them.  These are cultural, as well as structural differences that need to be addressed first before simply slapping a ‘gender neutral’ sign over the ladies sign in public spaces.

“In April 2017, the BBC journalist Samira Ahmed wanted to use a toilet. She was at a screening of the James Baldwin documentary I Am Not Your Negro at London’s Barbican arts centre, and it was the interval. Any woman who has ever been to the theatre knows what that means. This evening, the queue was worse than usual. Far worse. Because in an almost comically blatant display of not having thought about women at all, the Barbican had turned both the male and female toilets gender neutral simply by replacing the “men” and “women” signage with “gender neutral with urinals” and “gender neutral with cubicles”. The obvious happened. Only men were using the supposedly “gender neutral with urinals” and everyone was using the “gender neutral with cubicles”.

Rather than rendering the toilets genuinely gender neutral, they had simply increased the provision for men. “Ah the irony of having to explain discrimination having just been to see I Am Not Your Negro IN YOUR CINEMA”, Ahmed tweeted, suggesting that turning the gents gender neutral would be sufficient: “There’s NEVER such a queue there & you know it.”

On the face of it, it may seem fair and equitable to accord male and female public toilets the same amount of space – and historically, this is the way it has been done: 50/50 division of floor space has even been formalised in plumbing codes. However, if a male toilet has both cubicles and urinals, the number of people who can relieve themselves at once is far higher per square foot of floor space in the male bathroom than in the female bathroom. Suddenly equal floor space isn’t so equal.

But even if male and female toilets had an equal number of stalls, the issue wouldn’t be resolved, because women take up to 2.3 times as long as men to use the toilet. Women make up the majority of the elderly and disabled, two groups that will tend to need more time in the toilet.

Women are also more likely to be accompanied by children, as well as disabled and older people. Then there’s the 20–25% of women of childbearing age who may be on their period at any one time, and therefore need to change a tampon or a sanitary pad.

Women may also require more trips to the bathroom: pregnancy significantly reduces bladder capacity, and women are eight times more likely to suffer from urinary-tract infections. In the face of all these anatomical differences, it would surely take a formal equality dogmatist to continue to argue that equal floor space between men and women is fair.”

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