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March 2021

Doing It For The Kids

Apparently, the way to “help our black students develop positive racial identity” is to ensure that as many of them as possible leave academia sounding uneducated – indeed, unintelligent – and unable to write in an adult manner, and therefore have trouble finding employment, thus leading to plenty of exploitable resentment. I paraphrase, of course, though not by much.

Dr Asao Inoue, whose “research focusses on antiracist and social justice theory,” and whose scholarly insights include “destroy grading,” and “standards… are white supremacist,” has been mentioned here before. As when we learned that grading a student’s ability to convey their thoughts in writing - and to formulate thoughts by writing – is merely a manifestation of “white language supremacy,” an allegedly lethal phenomenon, and therefore to be abandoned in the name of, and I quote, “inclusive excellence.”

Rejecting “white racial habits of language” will, it seems, result in some kind of righteous emancipation, the particulars of which remain somewhat unclear. However, students sufficiently credulous to internalise this pernicious woo may find that their liberation - from being articulate and in possession of their thoughts - evaporates on contact with life beyond the campus. By which time, of course, those tuition cheques will have been cashed. 

Update, via the comments:

The assumptions on which this woo is piled are both perverse and laughably impractical. If the broader population regards being inarticulate and unable to write clearly and precisely as warning signs - say, in terms of employing university graduates – then that’s unlikely to change. People will make those kinds of judgments widely and for the foreseeable future. They are not generally wrong to do so. A job application littered with basic errors of spelling and grammar, and which has evidently not been proof-read, is sending a message. One that will be detected and responded to accordingly.

And encouraging university students, would-be intellectuals, to give potential employers the impression that no education has in fact taken place - and that they don’t much care whether they are clearly understood by anyone outside of their immediate social circle - doesn’t seem likely to achieve much of anything, beyond a cycle of failure and disaffection, and more self-flattering fantasies of racial persecution. It’s certainly an odd measure of “compassion,” a term of which pointed use is made. Stripped of woke pretensions, Dr Inoue is encouraging students to waste their time, and money, and prospects, by shouting at the rain.

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The Woes Of Womenfolk, An Infinite Series

In general, the King’s College report observed, British people were “much less likely to pick out inequality between men and women as a serious problem compared with other countries”… The link between Britain’s perception of itself in this regard and reality is seemingly as broken as it is in Saudi Arabia. We are much closer than we would like to think to countries where until recently women couldn’t drive

I’m reading the Guardian. Somebody stop me

Ours, says Nesrine Malik, is “a country that is heading into a post-pandemic gender inequality crisis.” Feel free to tremble with foreboding.

Oh, and consider this an open thread. Share ye links and bicker.

Friday Ephemera

Simpler times. (h/t, Damian) || Trophy malfunction of note. (h/t, Julia) ||  “No Trump supporters.” || Getting to grips with a foreign tongue. || Snug. || Ideal gift for Julia. || Next best thing. || Now, about that bad day you’ve had... || Our betters impart their wisdom. We need reminding, you see. (h/t, Darleen) || Our betters impart their wisdom 2. || Unsupervised potatoes. || Pedal-powered at 590 feet. || Hardcore headline. || Crane use of note. || New York, 1930s. || Nommy nommy nom. || Nature sound map and wild ambience. (h/t, Things) || Bolero, on one cello. || These are some of those. || The thrill of sea slugs. || Silent-era film effects. || And finally, understandably, she feared its mighty power.

Anyone’s For A Farthing

Consider this an open thread, but with a catch. Due to my infinite cunning.

Because, yes, it’s time to remind patrons that this rickety barge, on whose seating your arses rest, is kept afloat by the kindness of strangers. If you’d like to help it remain buoyant a while longer, and remain ad-free, there’s an orange button below with which to monetise any love. Debit and credit cards are accepted. For those wishing to express their love regularly, there’s a monthly subscription option top left. And if one-click haste is called for, my PalPay.Me page can be found here. Additionally, any Amazon UK shopping done via this link or the search widget top right, or for Amazon US via this link, results in a small fee for your host at no extra cost to you.

For newcomers wishing to know more about what’s been going on here for the last fourteen years, in over 3,000 posts and over 100,000 comments, the reheated series is a pretty good place to start - in particular, the end-of-year-summaries, which convey the fullest flavour of what it is we do. A sort of blog concentrate. If you like what you find there… well, there’s lots more of that.

If you can, do take a moment to poke through the discussion threads too. The posts are intended as starting points, not full stops, and the comments are where much of the good stuff is waiting to be found. And do please join in.

As always, thanks for the support, the comments, and the company.

Now share ye links and bicker.

Washday Blues

Because you crave one, it’s time for a thrilling adventure in the world of detergent.

My husband does the laundry. No one asks him to, and often no one thanks him for doing it. But somehow, every week, our clothes, our kids’ clothes, the towels, the sheets; they all get cleaned. And with each load, the jealousy grows.

Should readers be confused – and I quite understand – the jealousy is that of Erin Hendriksen, a contributor to Scary Mommy.

Throwing the piles into the washing machine is definitely the easy part. From there, he sorts them into mounds of hang-dry vs. dryer items, hangs the clothes, folds the towels and clothes, and puts the fresh sheets on the beds. A couple of times per week, I walk into our bedroom to find a tidy little pile of my clothes. They are folded with tenderness, neatly stacked, and grouped by category. 

What glorious man-creature is this?

I know he would put them away, too, if only he knew where they went.

A flaw. Thank goodness.

That is not even close to all he does around the house either. He’s the dishwasher, the grocery collector, the garbage remover, and the maintenance man. He follows behind us all, picking up the thrown socks, crumbs, and toys, somehow managing to maintain some sort of order within the chaos.

Ms Hendriksen’s husband also entertains the children with “nightly horsey rides, weekend swimming lessons, and stories before bed.” However, this is Scary Mommy, where progressive ladies bare their souls. And so, complications, and notes of sourness, must forever loom.  

I know that I am lucky to have him, he is a saint — but does he know how lucky he is? My husband… gets to leave the house… He ventures out into the world… taking in the fresh air, talking to someone other than me, and focusing on things that don’t involve our family. Sometimes he meets a friend for a socially distanced coffee. He often returns with a spring in his step, a spring that hasn’t been in my step for months. No wonder he has the energy to do the laundry... I resent that he can walk away, head downstairs, or off to work and take that vacation.

A vacation at work, that is - earning money to pay the bills. Not least, for detergent and fabric softener.

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Elsewhere (304)

Noah Carl on fashionable indignation versus probity and thinking: 

There are several things to notice here. First, the signatories use the word ‘revisits’ – rather than say ‘examines’ or ‘investigates’ – to imply that the theories in question have already been disproved, and hence that [economic historian, Gregory] Clark is engaged in some sort of futile exercise. Second, so far as I’m aware, ‘naturalization’ refers to the process of becoming a citizen of another country. I presume the signatories meant ‘naturalization’ in the sense of “nature versus nurture,” but it’s a very odd word to use. Third, the signatories refer to the “vast amount of research” that supposedly refutes Clark’s thesis, but don’t actually bother to cite any.

The unhappy signatories do, however, mention race and racism repeatedly - as, it seems, is the custom - despite the offending paper referring to race precisely zero times. 

Not entirely unrelated.*

Regarding the above, it occurs to me that if people are obliged, on pain of social exclusion and near-immediate career destruction, to mouth pieties that are illogical, blatantly question-begging, and which jar with observable reality, this will tend to result in an erosion of probity, a habit of pretence, and perhaps a kind of neuroticism.

Speaking of academic standards, an Ohio resident shares her displeasure with woke educators and their niche preoccupations

“Now, the residents with kids who did find out about your deviant curriculum, they pulled their kids out as fast as they could. More are withdrawing their kids because the school has lost control of the classroom environment,” she said. She took a moment to collect her thoughts, and then went on to say that “in the document for critical race theory, the stated goal is to make children activists in their own home. What does that mean?” She asked. “Why are you trying to create an adversarial relationship between parents and child when that is the relationship that needs to be strengthened?”

And somewhat related, Christopher F Rufo shares a conference for North Carolina’s public school teachers: 

At the first session, “Whiteness in Ed Spaces,” school administrators provided two handouts on the “norms of whiteness.” These documents claimed that “(white) cultural values” include “denial,” “fear,” “blame,” “control,” “punishment,” “scarcity,” and “one-dimensional thinking.” […]

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Friday Ephemera

For parents-to-be. || Empath. || Oh, brave new world that has such widgets in it. || The young in love. Or in heat, at least. || The thrill of wood steaming. || Fiddlesome games. || Difference noted. || Just like normal people. || Shopping mall scenes. || Unattractive sofa. || SR-72 rumours. “Anywhere on the planet, in an hour, or less.” || Spanish village of note. || Sperm whales 360. || Sticky situation. || Questions exchanged. || An aesthetic statement. || For devotees of the Clown Quarter and its wonders, this is one of these. || Critters. (h/t, Noah Carl) || Scenes of hardcore waitressing. || Only hiring the best, I see. || Error detected. || And finally, somewhat alarmingly, the humanoid equivalent of the Venus flytrap.

Friday Ephemera

Activate the dimensional aperture. || Shadow detected. (h/t, Damian) || Deep nostalgia. || “Depression checking,” a thread. || Interactive UK crime map. || Poorly paw. || A comforting presence. || We’re getting one or two sparks. || Some new-phone pornography. Ooh, ooh, he’s peeling the film. || A glimpse of your improved, progressive future. || Harassing random children for woke cred. || More scenes of human cunning. Or are they Cybermen? || Easy come, easy go. || Gents, start your engines. || Those are some of these. || Today’s word is ambition. || Bowling alley tour of note. || Meanwhile, in academia. || Mirage of note. || The thrill of hammer restoration. || And finally, relaxingly, just time for a little TV.

Tales From The Far Side

The curriculum recommends that teachers lead their students in a series of indigenous songs, chants, and affirmations, including the “In Lak Ech Affirmation,” which appeals directly to the Aztec gods. Students first clap and chant to the god Tezkatlipoka—whom the Aztecs traditionally worshipped with human sacrifice and cannibalism—asking him for the power to be “warriors” for “social justice.” 

Christopher F Rufo takes a look at California’s proposed ethnic studies curriculum.

The state board of education will vote on this curriculum next week.

Academic standards may not be quite up to snuff, but hey, look on the bright side. The kids can use class time to appeal to unseen demons, thereby bringing about “decolonization” and its “healing epistemologies.”

Oh, and consider this an open thread. Share ye links and bicker.

Exemplary Beings

Time for a quick flick through Scary Mommy, where left-leaning ladies are “supporting each other through laughter and empowerment.”

I have clinical anxiety.

But of course.

My current fixation happens to be a home invasion… My house is nigh on impossible, according to my husband, to break into. However, I can’t stop thinking about it.

No explanation is offered by the author, Elizabeth Broadbent, as to possible causes, but the fixation with “scary men breaking into my home” entails lots of weeping - “tears and breakdowns” are a recurring theme - and the purchase of many things.

My husband has had to buy any number of security items. A raging liberal who believes no one has any reason to own anything but a permitted shotgun for hunting, I’ve contemplated buying a pistol. These thoughts will not go awaySo I down another Klonopin and wait.

Oh, come on. It’s Scary Mommy. You knew some kind of mood-stabilising medication would crop up sooner or later. Other unhappy preoccupations include recurring thoughts of an expired husband:

I laid in bed imagining different ways he could meet his demise.


After the birth of my third son, I became convinced that his head would fall off.

Okay, then.

That’s when… they upped my meds.

At which point, readers may wish to ponder just how often ladies of the left feel a need to list their mental health problems, as if engaged in some kind of competition, while demanding that the rest of us aspire to their greatness, emulate their lifestyles, and do as they say.

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