David Thompson
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January 24, 2015

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John D

“The artist triggered me again. I’m hyperventilating. I literally can’t breathe right now… I’m being verbally attacked by this man. I’m shaking and crying. Please make it stop.”

David, you keep finding things that are very funny but very depressing.

David

you keep finding things that are very funny but very depressing.

Strictly speaking, Franklin found that one, but yes, that combination is a recurring theme here. I’m not quite sure how that came about.

Thank God for the exploding toilet stories.

rjmadden

fled the scene, dropping his backpack, with two hammers inside, and, among others things, his CUNY ID.

Good job he was a really clever English professor and not an idiot.

Anna

Vote Green! They're not really communists.

Patrick Brown

Wheeler cried out, “The artist triggered me again. I’m hyperventilating. I literally can’t breathe right now… I’m being verbally attacked by this man. I’m shaking and crying. Please make it stop.”

The wording of the article is slightly misleading - she didn't "cry out" any of that, she typed it on Twitter. Although I'm not sure that pretending to have a temper tamtrum in writing is any more dignified or convincing than actually having one in person.

Paul - Nottingham

Regarding the "progressive art" and still more progressive reaction I am amazed that the purpose of a university education in these days is evidently to have students enter the institution as young adults and leave it as emotionally retarded children. In my own day, many years ago, the students would have been ashamed to have been so pathetic - we had more balls than that, especially the women. The only bright spot is that there is probably a large majority of the student body who despise the activities and vapours of these amoebae.

I see that the President who you reference is now leaving her position at the age of 64. However, those worried about her subsequent destitution can calm their fears with the news that

"The state Board of Regents has approved a retirement deal for university president Sally Mason.

"It includes a provision that was part of her original contract that expired in 2012. That provision allows her to stay employed as a faculty member with a salary equal to 60-percent of her salary as president. That works out to $315,000.

"During Mason’s first year, she has no obligations and no teaching duties. In addition to the paycheck, Mason will also have an office and secretarial staff for the year.

"Regents president Bruce Rastetter says these things were agreed to in Mason’s original contract."

Our Sal has previous at unintentionally upsetting delicate flowers

"IOWA CITY (AP) -
"The University of Iowa president has apologized for a remark she made to the student newspaper about sex assaults on campus.

"In an interview published Feb. 18 in The Daily Iowan, President Sally Mason said she was dismayed by the reports of sexual assaults. She said "the goal would be to end that, to never have another sexual assault. That's probably not a realistic goal just given human nature, and that's unfortunate. ..."

"Criticism erupted over the phrase that includes "human nature."

"The Iowa City Press-Citizen says Mason apologized during a President's Forum on Tuesday.

"Mason said she's been told by several people in the campus community that her remark was hurtful. She said she was "very, very sorry for any pain that my words might have caused.""

David

the purpose of a university education in these days is evidently to have students enter the institution as young adults and leave it as emotionally retarded children.

That does seem to happen quite a lot, more so than seems likely without active encouragement.

WTP

The purpose of a college education, for those in the clown quarter anyway, is to teach absurdities. As Voltaire said, it makes getting people to later commit atrocities so much easier. I doubt Mr. Tracinski, nor the rest of us, will see any apologies. Those activists, journalists, and academics (he missed one) can rest what little consciences that they have on the understanding that “untrue” symbols can be a work of art.

As philosophers have long noted, art is a beautiful untrue thing. As such, factual veracity is usually not of critical importance in art. Despite (or perhaps because of) this, works of art can present general truths through what might be regarded as specific untruths. Uncle Tom’s Cabin is not a factual documentary on slavery, Lord of the Flies is not a report of real events, nor is Romeo & Juliet a factual account of a real tragedy. Despite this, these and so many other works convey general truths or make moral points using untrue things.
JuliaM

Patrick Brown: "The wording of the article is slightly misleading - she didn't "cry out" any of that, she typed it on Twitter. ..."

Well, she had to, since she 'literally can’t breathe right now' and you need air to cry out. It's amazing the keyboard wasn't swimming before her eyes with the lack of oxygen though...

David

I’m still marvelling at the idea that a supposedly intelligent grown woman could be reduced to breathlessness – in her words, hyperventilating - by someone daring to disagree, albeit only partially.

Franklin

Soon-to-be-Doctor Wheeler wasn't the only one expressing outrage under #blackHawkeyes in early December, just the one who was most consistently entertaining. Researching that portion of the article required hours of delving into the wounded id of college-level progressivism as it manifests on Twitter. Donations to my recovery fund can be sent to a registry I've set up at Blanchard's Liquors here in Boston; contact me for details.

Mr Ecks

I'm gonna keep saying it: close all non-science Uni facilities and courses NOW,sack all non-science staff without compensation and confiscate their pensions. These middle-class leftist turds are costing us more than all the dole scroungers there ever were or ever will be.

Nikw211

How does it happen that … higher education provides cosseted professional careers to so many who disdain the basic conditions of free inquiry on which colleges and universities depend? [ … ] Those who condone or actually encourage violence of various sorts are more common on campus than many realize.

I believe there is a saying amongst social justice warrior types that 'A fish rots from the head down'.

Living as they tend to do in highly rarefied environments, it doesn't seem beyond the realms of plausibility to suggest that that particular saying draws- somewhat ironically as it turns out - on their personal – and rather limited – experiences.

Ignorance, in other words.

Nikw211

OT (apologies)

"It is easier to mock [Steve Emerson] than to suggest the correct way to deal with the threat of Islamism.

Paul - Nottingham

"I'm gonna keep saying it: close all non-science Uni facilities and courses NOW, sack all non-science staff without compensation and confiscate their pensions. These middle-class leftist turds are costing us more than all the dole scroungers there ever were or ever will be."

I hate to break this to you, but the (current) University of Iowa's President is a Zoologist.

Paul - Nottingham

Wheeler is a doctoral student.

She should check her privilege!

Paul - Nottingham

http://uiowa.academia.edu/KaylaWheeler/CurriculumVitae

sk60

“The artist triggered me again. I’m hyperventilating. I literally can’t breathe right now… I’m being verbally attacked by this man. I’m shaking and crying. Please make it stop.”

Have these people ever been told "this is not how adults are supposed to behave"?

R. Sherman

. . . Her “areas of work” are “geography from the perspective of Marxist philosophy . . ."

Query: Does Marxist philosophy change the fact that the Amazon is in South America?

Lancastrian Oik

"Two hammers"?

Clearly a Pete Seeger fan, then, with a spare one, just in case. Ol' Pete never did specify to whom or what the hammer blows were to be applied when spellin' out the love between the brothers and the sisters, all over the land. Some coppers on the Brooklyn Bridge is as good a place as any to start, I reckon.

Hal

. . . Her “areas of work” are “geography from the perspective of Marxist philosophy . . ."

Query: Does Marxist philosophy change the fact that the Amazon is in South America?

Ah, no, when declaring from a Marxist point of view that the Amazon is anywhere but South America, that is either the classical presentational Marxism that we all quite genuinely know and love and continue to revere, or, is actually classical Marxist economics rather than geography.

As for the actually existent area of the study of geography from the perspective of Marxist philosophy, that too is a rather dedicated and very focused subject . . . but it also does tend to still have its rather traditional name of The War College . . . . . .

Elrond Hubbard

Lancastrian Oik,

Ah, the late Pete Seeger, the banjo Bolshevik.

dicentra

I am amazed that the purpose of a university education in these days is evidently to have students enter the institution as young adults and leave it as emotionally retarded children.

"Universities are left-wing seminaries. The difference between a Christian seminary and a typical university is that the Christian seminary admits it wants to produce a believing Christian, but the university does not admit that it wants to produce a believing leftist." — Dennis Prager, paraphrased

Given that Leftism, as a movement, behaves like someone with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and given that NPDs are emotionally frozen at the age of six, yep, you've got it.

dicentra

close all non-science Uni facilities and courses NOW, sack all non-science staff without compensation and confiscate their pensions.

Oh sure: release the lunatics into the general population where they can spread their malignancy with greater aplomb.

dicentra

Query: Does Marxist philosophy change the fact that the Amazon is in South America?

Yes. Sort of.

I saw the Hobo-Dyer South-Up Map being sold at an Ithaca, NY bookstore as a counterweight to the imperialist north-up Mercator projection, which makes countries dominated by white people look bigger AND more prominent*, being positioned at the top.

This equal-area projection makes equatorial areas look larger than the polar areas and also checks the privilege of the northern populations.

So the location of the Amazon on such a map is technically in South America, but with the south on top, is it still south or does it read as north?

Amazon is also in the Internet Cloud, which is everywhere and nowhere all at once.

Just like God.

*I remember sitting in class in elementary school, looking at Mercator projections and thinking that Scandinavia had hydrocephaly. Having access to a globe at home, I knew what the correct proportions were.

Bart

“The artist triggered me again. I’m hyperventilating. I literally can’t breathe right now"

Ms Kayla: updating your Twitter page is usually a quite low priority for people who 'literally' can't breathe, and is typically superceded by concerns such as frantically trying to regain said ability in the five minutes you have left to live.

Also, hyperventilating (also known as 'overbreathing') refers to an excessive intake of air. It's the precise opposite of being literally unable to breathe, and it is physically and logically impossible to be doing both at once.

Other than that, your claim is highly convincing.

Franklin

An earlier draft pointed out that they were contradictory breathing experiences and she needed to pick one, but they don't go for that kind of snark at City Journal.

WTP

Bart, "literally" does not literally mean "literally". You can look it up. Just don't shoot the messenger.

David

In other news, Mr Pharrell Williams is saving the world from your excess.

Jonathan

"I’m still marvelling at the idea that a supposedly intelligent grown woman could be reduced to breathlessness – in her words, hyperventilating - by someone daring to disagree, albeit only partially. "

We can smile all we like but the fact is that these people have enormous influence and their, frankly childish, tactics are extremely effective. As most on the left believe that 'The Personal is Political', there is no aspect of one's life that is not subject to their scrutiny and control.
People like Wheeler end up working in Academia or the bureaucracy of local and national government, large companies or NGOs and Quangos, they produce nothing of value but constantly push a far left agenda. They are dangerous and pose a genuine threat to Freedom.

WTP

Jonathan, I've been saying as much for decades now. The only difference is when people laugh at me for saying this is a serious problem, today it's a little more muffled and projects a greater sense of nervousness. To me the greater danger is what these people are doing in or schools and universities by replicating this diseased thinking from a platform that cannot reasonably be challenged by the children and young adults that are their subjects.

Dr Cromarty

Wheeler cried out, “The artist triggered me again. I’m hyperventilating. I literally can’t breathe right now… I’m being verbally attacked by this man. I’m shaking and crying. Please make it stop.”

Lorazepam 0.5mg sublingually as required up to three times a day in the acute phase, then CBT and/or sertraline. Or grow a spine. It's not for other people to 'make it stop'
It's up to you.

Dr Cromarty

Or re breathing into a paper bag. Nearly forgot that.

Quint&Jessel, Sea of Azof, Bly, UK

How patient are the saner elements in the student body at UIowa, in that apparently they are not teasing and mocking hyperventilating art censor Kayla Wheeler every hour of every day, as I might have back when I was an undergrad?

David, this little lady's blog might amuse. No, not like that, like you found a kindred spirit! http://wtfsocialjustice.tumblr.com/

LW

These days, colleges seem eager to impose on themselves onerous sets of rules meant to govern in fine detail how people can talk with one another, how sexual interactions should proceed, what kind of container can be used to drink water, and how often a toilet may be flushed. No function of life in the community is too small to be regulated and no personal freedom is so important that it can be exempt from collective control. Yet these campuses that are in the midst of embracing total social control over their members are also places where people extol racial violence and other forms of extreme lawlessness to be imposed on the rest of society. It is one of the great ironies of contemporary academe that the same phrase is employed to justify the regime of petty tyranny on campus and murderous anarchy off-campus. Both are pursued in the name of "social justice."

That.

David

It is one of the great ironies of contemporary academe that the same phrase is employed to justify the regime of petty tyranny on campus and murderous anarchy off-campus. Both are pursued in the name of “social justice.”

Well, if your worldview is premised on the need to exert power over others, and to indoctrinate and scold, thereby signalling one’s own status as an elevated being, this offers a certain license for unsavoury behaviour. Coherence is much less important than the personal gratification and sense of power that such behaviour offers. It’s therefore no surprise that mob harassment and laying claim to the belongings of others have become favoured tools of self-imagined radicals. In the name of virtue, or progress, or “social justice,” you can be a vindictive little shit, very often with impunity. Which may explain why campus leftism attracts so many obnoxious people. It’s a golden ticket for a certain kind of personality.

In 2011, at the height of the Occupy fad, some telling scenes were filmed during the ‘occupation’ of a conservative conference at the Washington Convention Centre. Videos of the incident show conference attendees trying to drive home, only to find Occupiers screaming abuse and refusing to let them leave, even climbing on their vehicles. Behind the mindless chants of “we are the 99%,” the actual, more honest, message was difficult to miss. The occupants of the vehicles, including children, were left in little doubt that the mob surrounding them and hammering on their windscreens could do them harm at the slightest provocation. Simply owning an expensive car was considered a form of incitement, and the drivers of such vehicles were singled out for particular abuse.

As the people being harassed and intimidated were ordinary members of the public, one might see the ‘occupation’ as both a punishment and a threat – a warning to those who dare to hold insufficiently leftwing views.

At the same event, fire exits were blocked by groups of protestors who were determined to trap the people inside, with one Occupier dragging her small children into the middle of a scuffle in order to use the bewildered toddlers as part of a barricade. At another ‘occupied’ exit, a lone disabled woman found herself trapped by a dozen or so masked and jeering protestors, including students, who displayed their moral credentials by taunting a woman in a wheelchair, while triumphantly chanting “this is what democracy looks like.”

I’m still trying to imagine the kind of mind that thinks it righteous, or at least entertaining, to trap and then mock a disabled woman who just wants to get home.

Watcher In The Dark

"I literally can’t breathe right now… "

Thank God it was not being able to breathe figuratively. Then we really would be worried. OTOH language isn't wot she is meant to be these days, innit.

David

In case anyone missed it, the recent TV interview with the Green Party’s Natalie Bennett really is a car crash to remember. Apparently, maths is hard.

wtp

To you and I, car wreck. To the greater innumerate masses, educated by the likes of whom Mr. Ecks refers above, it's "Right on, sister!". The tipping point is not far off. Hopefully Greece will provide a lesson learned. But such hasn't been the case with Venezuela, Argentina, or any of the other various socialist failures of the last 100 years.

Curious who has the larger pull over there, the Greens or UKIP?

David

Curious who has the larger pull over there, the Greens or UKIP?

In terms of party membership, I think they’re roughly the same, around 40,000 or so. In terms of expected electoral clout, UKIP dwarfs the Greens.

Mr Ecks

close all non-science Uni facilities and courses NOW, sack all non-science staff without compensation and confiscate their pensions.

"Oh sure: release the lunatics into the general population where they can spread their malignancy with greater aplomb."

Is that before or after they earn a living in today's economy with zero useful skills?

Mr Ecks

Dr Cromarty:


"Or re breathing into a paper bag. Nearly forgot that."

Breathing into a plastic bag would be a better solution.

dicentra

Where is Steve: Steveageddon II?

How am I supposed to continue without Steve: SII weighing in on something?

dicentra

Is that before or after they earn a living in today's economy with zero useful skills?

They join Soros-funded activist groups and spread their venom far and wide in the name of "community organizing."

Or they get a job with social services and harass home-schoolers.

Or they hire on with a non-profit that spends half its time writing grant proposals and the other half agitating for restrictions on everyone else.

Their type always land on their feet. We can fantasize all we want about reality asserting itself and teaching them a hard lesson, but it never happens. They're the ones who think the gulags need to be reported to Unca Joe.

mojo

Mercator, what a racist, amirite?

David

Where is Steve: Steveageddon II?

Hey, if you two need a room I can rent out the wine cellar. The giant spiders can usually be chased away with fire.

Henry

The giant spiders

These?

Not just Devon. I find to my horror that they've arrived in my home town. Pretty sure they're coming for me, actually..

Yes there's a bit of a Stevageddon shaped hole around here - no one's quite able to fill it. 'You don't know what you've got till it's gone' and all that..

Hal

An important and nuanced political discussion . . . .

The Lurker on the Threshold

The giant spiders

These?

Good God! Are the English such wimps? Over here in Oz we have spiders with legspans that can cover your hand wandering round on our walls and ceilings without it worrying us and yet in England a midget like that actually rates an article in a newspaper.

galah23

Have to concur. I don't know why the English have such a problem with insects in general. Anyway, it's the spiders that you don't see until it's too late are the ones to worry about.

Darleen

Southern California - outside the urban area being surrounded by desert, we still get a fair number of spiders.

One can get a start driving in the early morning and realizing the hopping thing at the side of the road is a tarantula annoyed at the big bad car.

Darleen

(most spiders don't bother me ... beneficial in the garden. however, I cannot stand black widows and will hunt them down mercilessly)

Ray

"I’m shaking and crying. Please make it stop."

Appropriate response:

"Does your carer have your medication?"

Ray

"Over here in Oz we have spiders with legspans that can cover your hand wandering round on our walls and ceilings"

Yeah, nice try lurker, but I've lived in Oz and the big spiders can't climb walls anymore than the scorpions here in Thailand can. Luckily.

JL

I can assure Ray that big spiders in Australia are expert at climbing walls. Fortunately, while scary, they are mostly harmless.

David

Incidentally, third-year doctoral student Kayla Wheeler, who finds polite disagreement a cause of panic attacks, has been busy blocking people who disagree with her and has now rendered her tweets inaccessible. Presumably to spare her deep and righteous thoughts from contamination.

The academic world is lucky to have her in its bosom.

The Lurker on the Threshold

Ray,

You've never seen huntsman spiders?

Ray

I have indeed seen a huntsman, trying to sneak into the bathroom for the water during the dry season, a fairly common occurrence. Looking at Google I was probably just lucky. Never saw a particularly big one, or one that went for a stroll across the lounge room wall. I saw a some bigger spiders in the yard, but the chickens kill them if they see them. Highly recommended for the Sydney garden, chickens.

Ten
I’m shaking and crying. Please make it stop.

In other words, my emotional reaction is all the intellectual validation any of us - meaning YOU - need. Surely.

It's a corollary to the F word used to express other equally righteous, instinctive, and necessary political, social, urbanist, progressive outrage. If any of this is present, the discussion is over.

See, we were built this way by the great accidental creation event and we shall bear it witness.

Pay them respect, all minds, because they alone are faithful to the only cause that matters, the one mystically and transcendentally imbued upon their very souls.

Ten

...or it could just be narcissism.

Jonathan

@David

Giant Spiders in the Wine Cellar? I would've thought the Balrog kept them at bay.

wtp

"the great accidental creation event"...heh, I like that. Wondered how I ever missed it, but FWIW couldn't find a reference to such on Google. Perhaps a Ten original? Props.

Jonathan

Meanwhile...An interesting proposal:

http://www.dailycal.org/2015/01/20/occupy-syllabus/

wtp

Jonathan, found this rather telling from occupy-syllabus:

the professor said he wanted to make the theory relevant to present issues, the class was out of touch with the majority of students’ lives. The lectures often incorporated current events, yet none of the examples engaged critically with gender or race. The professor even failed to mention the Ferguson events, even though he lectured about prisons, normalizing discourse and the carceral archipelago in Foucault’s “Discipline and Punish” the day after the grand jury decision on the murder of Michael Brown.

What these innocent souls fail to understand is that leftist ideology only works in the fantasy world of 20/20 hindsight. Thus it is necessary for the hive of their betters to consult and reflect on the consequences of other people's real-time actions before presenting a unified, somewhat believable perspective to the little angels in their charge. Such efforts do not happen overnight.

David

the class was out of touch with the majority of students’ lives.

Foolishly, I was under the impression that students of the humanities were expected to stretch their horizons to meet the work and thereby discover universal themes, along the way developing a curiosity regarding other times and places, other lives besides their own. Rather than shrinking the work to fit the identitarian dogma of teenagers. It reminds me of this: “Why did I have to listen in music humanities to this Mozart? Who is this Mozart, this Haydn, these superior white men? There are no women, no people of colour.”

Connor

"Furthermore, the classroom environment felt so hostile to women, people of color, queer folks and other marginalized subjects that it was difficult for us to focus on the course material. Sometimes, we were so uncomfortable that we had to leave the classroom in the middle of lecture."

Some people aren't cut out for college.

David

Some people aren’t cut out for college.

It’s worth bearing in mind that this kind of preciousness is encouraged and rewarded, affirmed as a credential, a measure of tribal authenticity. It’s what Heather Mac Donald described as, “a co-dependent relationship between self-engrossed students and adults whose careers consist of catering to that self-involvement.” And so in order to “get real” students are encouraged to become a cartoon, a walking parody, declaring their victimisation at the drop of a hat. Or the theoretically possible dropping of a hat, somewhere, maybe, at some point in the future.

Charlie Suet

http://www.theguardian.com/teacher-network/2015/jan/28/teach-students-equality-smarties

Agnes has made a common error. Can you guess what it is?

wtp

Oh in practice likely more than one, Charlie. What should be horrifying is that such a person can attain a PhD without becoming educated enough to see the obvious flaws in her administration of this "experiment". What should be horrifying is that someone so lacking in common sense is in charge of educating children. What should be horrifying is that such a person is in charge of educating more college students to be just like her. What should be horrifying is the lack of objection by parents of these children (though I suspect they never knew) to what their children are supposedly being taught.

This problem is perpetuating itself almost exponentially. Though I found most of the comments to be somewhat reassuring.

Jimmy

Reading the comments, it seems that most who are wealthy got that way by perpetuating some horrible unfairness. I suppose these types scowl at people like myself who plant to leave as much inherited wealth to my potential offspring as I can.

Jimmy

plan, not 'plant'.

Is it too early to be worried about government deciding that inter-generational wealth should be heavily taxed?.

Joan

@Jimmy

It's never too early to be worried about the government. They're always looking for ways to thieve.

wtp

Heh...rereading my comment above and use of "horrifying" looks quite alarmist. Though my mental frame of reference when posting that was if you went back 30 years or so and presented such a scenario to most people in the context of the common sense of the generations that were alive 30 years ago, they'd be quite shocked/horrified. Or so I suspect. ymmv.

Mr_Eugenides

Jonathan Chait on how the language police are killing liberalism:

The whole idea that the professor committed a crime by stealing a sign and shoving away its owner turns out to be an ideological construct. “The ease with which privileged white, and particularly young white gender and sexually normative appearing women, make claims to ‘victimhood’ and ‘violation of property,’ is not a neutral move,” [The Feminist Wire website] authors argued. It concluded, “We issue a radical call for accountability to questions of history, representation, and the racialized gendering of tropes of ‘culpability’ and ‘innocence’ when considering Dr. Miller-Young’s case.”

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2015/01/not-a-very-pc-thing-to-say.html

David

Jonathan Chait on how the language police are killing liberalism

I think Chait’s criticism is nowhere near sceptical enough, but the reactions from many so-called ‘progressives’ have been interesting.

Franklin, who wrote this, has been having a not dissimilar experience. In which, people – students, remember – refuse to engage with criticism, or even read it, and refer to a dull sculpture as having “terroristic impact.”

AC1

>Agnes has made a common error.

She forgot Ricardo's Law of Rent?

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