The Thrill Of Unemployment

But What If Your ‘Whole Self’ Is, Frankly, Aggravating?

And back in the world of contrived racial grievance

Job postings and corporate ‘About Us’ pages often include a statement about the company fostering an environment where employees can bring their ‘whole selves’ to work. But how often do these claims reflect reality?

At risk of being difficult, I have questions about the premise. For one, why on God’s Fragrant Earth would an employer, or indeed their customers, want employees to drag every last piece of their personal baggage into the workplace and then inflict that inexhaustible tedium on everyone else? If, say, I’m buying groceries, I am as a rule friendly towards the person at the checkout. There’s always eye contact, a smile, and a word of appreciation. However, I rarely have the time or inclination to hear about the cashier’s extensive list of ailments or her difficulties finding a babysitter, or a lover, or a suitable shampoo. Nor do I wish to hear her views on politics. It’s not why I’m there. And ditto her.

Bringing your whole self to your job can be challenging at best and career limiting at worst, specifically for marginalized and racialized peoples.

There we go. At this point, we could, I think, just paraphrase and save a lot of time:

Self-Involvement Not Entirely Practical In The Workplace. Magic Brown People Hardest Hit.

But no. We must push on.

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Service With A Snarl

Another candidate for our not-entirely-suited-to-the-job file:

The elderly couple ordered a “carefully budgeted” $50 of groceries to be delivered to their home last Sunday… Nothing was amiss until they went outside to meet the driver, Tara, for fear that she might struggle with her vehicle in their snow-covered driveway. When they opened the front door, Tara yelled at them… while rocking her vehicle back and forth in the driveway.

It turned out the issue wasn’t snow

The ostensible cause of Tara’s mental crisis can be viewed here.

Update, via the comments:

The individual in question, the one swollen with righteousness, is no longer employed.

Via I, Hypocrite, via Darleen. Also, open thread.

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 Thrill Of Euphemism

Erika Sanzi reports on an educational breakthrough

Richard Carranza, Chancellor of schools in New York City, has done it again… There will be no numeric grades allowed for high schoolers, and no teachers, in any grades, are allowed to give a failing grade. The lowest “grade” allowed for elementary schoolers will be “needs improvement.” For middle schoolers, failing grades will be designated as “course in progress.” And for high schoolers, an F will become an “Incomplete,” whether the student plans on turning in any work or can show that any learning of the subject has actually occurred.

While grades and attendance are to be deemed bothersome details unworthy of attention, “factors such as equity” will, we’re assured, be given more prominence. Readers will note that the retreat from clear metrics into euphemism and pernicious fuzzwords – chief among which, “equity” - not only makes it difficult to determine pupils’ academic progress and actual competence, but also has a secondary effect of making it more difficult to identify the shortcomings of left-leaning educators and administrators. A coincidence, I’m sure.

Via here, via here

Previously in the world of “equity” – in San Diego, in San Francisco, and in Ohio.  

And somewhat related, this

And then there’s “equity” - another word favoured by both educators and campus activists – and which is defined, if at all, only in the woolliest and most evasive of terms. And which, when used by those same educators and activists, seems to mean something like “equality of outcome regardless of inputs.” Inputs including diligence and punctuality.

If that sounds a tad perverse and an unlikely path to human flourishing, our betters are only too happy to correct your unsophisticated notions.

They Sell Failure

From a needlessly indulgent New York Times piece on Robin DiAngelo and her fellow clown-shoe race-hustlers:

[Marcus] Moore directed us to a page in our training booklets: a list of white values. Along with “‘The King’s English’ rules,” “objective, rational, linear thinking” and “quantitative emphasis,” there was “work before play,” “plan for future” and “adherence to rigid time schedules.” Moore expounded that white culture is obsessed with “mechanical time” — clock time — and punishes students for lateness. This, he said, is but one example of how whiteness undercuts Black kids. “The problems come when we say this way of being is the way to be.” In school and on into the working world, he lectured, tremendous harm is done by the pervasive rule that Black children and adults must “bend to whiteness, in substance, style and format.”

Well, that’s one way of looking at it. A perverse and pernicious way, I’d suggest, and an obvious blueprint for degrading, perhaps irreparably, the lives and opportunities of those sufficiently credulous to internalise it. Unless, of course, the cultivation of tardiness, self-absorption, and lack of focus, along with a disregard for deadlines, standards and obligations, and a disdain for reciprocity, will somehow catapult minority students into gainful employment. But such is the way of the woke. Or of “equity transformation specialists,” in Mr Moore’s case.

One might instead argue that this supposedly “white” “obsession” with “mechanical time” – which is to say, basic foresight and punctuality - or just adulthood - has very little to do with oppressing the negro, as Mr Moore claims, and rather more to do with courtesy and treating other people as if they were real, just as real as you, and no more deserving of delays, frustration, or gratuitous disrespect. It seems to me that punctuality is not only about getting things done, about practicality and cooperation, but about getting over yourself. And presumably, Mr Moore - the one reducing black children to strange and otherly beings, unmoored by mere temporal concerns – would prefer his payments for this claptrap, aired to teachers and school administrators, to materialise promptly. Not, say, three weeks late. Or hey, whenever

Update, via the comments:

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She Feels Unclean

In the pages of the Observer, a new niche agony is detected

Is it ever acceptable for a feminist to hire a cleaner?

Needless to say, it starts off quite dramatically,

The day my cleaner used to visit, I would return home in the evening to the smell of Dettol mixed with Tania’s sweat, to a clean kitchen and bathroom and a drenching sense of guilt. 

Gratuitous drama and drenching guilt aside, I’m not entirely sure why hiring a cleaner should obviously be more fraught than hiring, say, a gardener or roofer. And it occurs to me that if you can smell someone’s perspiration above the odour of cleaning products, said person may require some kind of medical attention.

The piece, by empowered feminist author Sally Howard, continues in high gear,

It was the same unease that greeted me when I collected my son Leo from his nursery – a national chain disproportionately staffed by women of colour – or bought clothes from a mainstream clothing outlet that relies, as many do, on female garment workers in the global south.

For the kind of middle-class feminist who as recreation writes for the Observer, life is apparently an endless moral torture inflicted by minor, everyday events, or at least an exhausting theatre of pretending to be tortured by minor, everyday events. Which of the two constitutes a more harrowing and nightmarish existence, I leave to the reader. 

For [my book, The Home Stretch], I spent time under cover with the women who clean Britain’s offices and homes. I picked used tampons off bathroom carpets and scrubbed bathtub tidemarks and sauces spattered across kitchen walls; and I discovered a few things. 

That some women are so messy and antisocial that bloodied tampons are left for others to step on? Is that a permissible feminist thought?

I learned that fashionable householders’ preference for less-effective eco and homemade cleaning products doubles cleaners’ labour.

No laughing at the back.

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Don’t Oppress My People With Your Norms Of Punctuality

From Tulane University, the very heart of White Devil Babylon - uptown New Orleans - student Shahamat Uddin - pronouns “he, him, his” - howls in protest:

Punctuality centres whiteness. It is far easier for white men to get to work on time than Black people who are having to change their hair to fit the workplace’s professionalism standards. 

It’s a hair thing, yes, and therefore terribly political, a hill to die on. But it’s even more than that. It’s also the devastating suspicion that you might be more likely to get hired if you remove your nose piercing, if only during office hours:

I remember the cultural pride I felt when I got my gold studded nose piercing, admiring my ancestors who donned the same kind of jewellery. I take it out now because I know I need a job, and I have learned from the Brown and Black people before me what I have to sacrifice to get one.

You see, wondering whether that nose piercing will be frowned upon, by employers or their customers, constitutes “systemic white supremacy,” a crushing phenomenon “that is barring us from maximal success.” It’s a “sacrifice,” an outrage, proof of being downtrodden. Because nose jewellery is pivotal to both optimal functioning and mental wellbeing. And questions of whether such piercings are ideal for a given workplace - however unspecified and theoretical those questions may be - amount to further, damning proof that “this country was not made for me.”

I have learned when and where it is to my own disadvantage to be too Brown or too gay or too immigrant. 

One more time, Tulane University. Where tuition is a mere $60,000 a year. And where the oppressed huddle for comfort against the Cold Winds of Whiteness.

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Dismantlers Of Patriarchy Dismantled

In niche eatery news:

A feminist-owned and operated cafe that made headlines around the world after introducing an 18% “man tax” on male customers will be closing its doors at the end of the month. Handsome Her, a vegan establishment located in Melbourne, Australia, will be going out of business on April 28, according to an announcement on its website.

It turns out that “brazen public discussions of structural inequality and oppression,” rules about women having “priority seating,” and serving turmeric lattes with macadamia milk, isn’t in fact the basis of a thriving business. Even in Brunswick, Melbourne. However, the empowered proprietors insist that the mockery aimed at their pricing policy merely “showed us how fragile masculinity is and solidified the necessity for us to confront and dismantle patriarchy.”

Via Orwell & Goode.

I Axe You

Sounding dim and uneducated is now, it seems, something to aspire to and encourage, especially at universities

A sociolinguist from Stanford University claims the way African-Americans speak leads to discrimination across the board — in the court system, interactions with police, education, and employment. Professor John Rickford says, “Black Vernacular English” is viewed as less “trustworthy, intelligent and well-educated” than so-called standard “white” English, and that “dismantling this construction is part of the fight for racial justice.” Rickford, who is the current president of the Linguistic Society of America, said the “modern-day racialisation of language” — which mandates that African-Americans conform to the white norm — has its roots in slavery.

In other words, bad whitey. Because judging people by what falls from their mouths – its comprehensibility, precision and so forth – is racist and oppressive. And if someone sounds barely literate, and uninterested in being understood by anyone outside of their immediate circle, then you should pretend that this is somehow your fault. It’s the way of the woke. 

We’ve been here before, of course, when CUNY’s Dr A. W. Strouse - an enthusiast of “social justice” and whose dissertation is titled Literary Theories of the Foreskin – denounced “bourgeois white teachers” and insisted that correcting errors of spelling and basic grammar can “make students feel bewildered, hurt, or angry,” and should therefore be abandoned.

A conceit that prompted the following:  

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Elsewhere (281)

Further to recent rumblings in the comments, Helen Dale on the massive oversupply of negligibly-talented artists and writers: 

There are too many artists, too many people who want to be artists, and most of them aren’t very good… Meanwhile, universities (yes, you can go to university, rack up student debt, and ‘learn’ to be a writer) tell some people – depending on skin tone, sex, orientation, or something else – that as a matter of routine they have an important and luminous story to tell because of what they are… These people are everywhere in the economy, living hand-to-mouth and doing idiot things like demanding “luxury communism now.”  

Via Tim, James Delingpole and David Craig on low standards in higher education: 

When we were at university, probably one out of six school-leavers went to university. Now it’s about one out of every two. The number of people going to university has gone up from about 700,000 thirty years ago to over 2.3 million now… The way we’ve achieved that is not by increasing the intellectual capacity of British youth. For example, now, around 51% of all people going to university are getting in on three ‘D’s at A-level, or worse. Leeds Metropolitan University during one year had 97 courses for which you only needed two ‘E’s at A-level… We’ve increased the number of students with a huge drop in the bar you need to get over to get a place at university, and to be able to borrow up to £50,000 of taxpayers’ money.

There are currently around £100bn in outstanding student loans, of which, according to some estimates, 83% are expected to be in default to varying degrees.

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