Friday, November 30, 2018
Biology Not Welcome on Twitter
Twitter has apparently determined that even asking questions about the non-scientific idea that men can be women (and vice versa) based on nothing more than their feelings is hate speech. Even if we leave aside the problematic issue of defining anyone's opinions as hate speech and suppressing them, this really speaks to the hollowness of arguments in support of transgender activism. The entire purpose of science is to ask questions, conduct research, generate conclusions and have those conclusions challenged by one's peers.
When you have no answers to the challenges and instead respond by shutting down the ability of others to ask questions, that's basically the opposite of science. And the activists in question are not satisfied with simply getting Twitter to enforce their new "rules." They want the government to do so as well. So if you don’t see me on Twitter much in the near future, you can probably look for me on Gab or some other platform.
Wednesday, October 31, 2018
Unfortunately, whether we're talking about politics or the educational system, this is a repeating theme. Any discussions of transgender issues, down to the language people use to talk about it, is shielded from any scientific analysis or questions. Bringing up basic medical science is considered bigoted and people raising such questions are labeled "transphobic." But if's the [sic] not the people asking the questions who are the ones paying the price. It’s the patients who are egged on by the media and social justice warriors.Also from Mr. Shaw:
This trend of blithely accepting men who identify as women to compete in women's sporting events is bad for actual women and undercuts their work and achievements. But it's also bad for society as a whole, as it undermines basic science while ignoring the issues of people who are very likely in need of serious emotional and mental health support.
Sunday, September 30, 2018
Consequences of the New Justice
Shifting the burden of proof on Senate confirmations, appointments, and elections changes all the incentives for public service. If we are not to evaluate claims on "facts" in order to determine whether the "essence" actually is "real," then what should form the basis of our evaluation? Whether or not we like the accused? Which party does he or she represent, or which party appointed him?
This is not a recipe for justice, but instead an environment for bare-knuckled politics and a breeding ground for a return to Salem circa 1692. Such an environment will repel men and women of goodwill and good character from public service, incentivizing only the most insensitive and impervious personalities to choose to serve. That will lead to even further degradation of public discourse and an erosion of trust in institutions, which will make witch hunts and smear campaigns even more likely.
Does anyone remember what point Democrat Richard Blumenthal sought to make when he began his questioning of Judge Kavanaugh yesterday? Blumenthal prefaced his questions with a citation of the principle falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus. The gist of the principle is that if a witness is shown to have lied about one thing, one may infer that a witness lied about everything.
The thoughts of anyone familiar with Blumenthal's own issues with the truth must have wandered, as mine did. It calls to mind the paradox of the Cretan philosopher who posed the proposition that all Cretans are liars (the Epimenides paradox). Senator Blumenthal is such a Cretan.
Friday, August 31, 2018
Jazz Shaw [emphasis added]:
When asked how much housing this new rent control policy would apply to, Nixon and her running mate said basically all of it, including new projects which haven't even been built yet. Their next proposal needs to be a way for the municipal government to force people to go into construction because nobody is going to build any new housing with that threat hanging over their heads.The wannabe Castros pushing single payer will have to include something similar in their bill to force people to become physicians. You know, because health care is a "right."
Saturday, August 18, 2018
The right side of history
Congratulations, Minnesota. You've really dialed yourself in with a winner and yet another rising star of the Democratic Party, I'm sure. And if this is the face of the modern Democratic Party, we should make sure everyone in the country knows about it. Let's see how well that sells in the heartland.
Saturday, July 28, 2018
Why all this effort to blame the fans for the series' troubles? Because we must never – ever, under any circumstances – blame Kathleen Kennedy. Kennedy, you see, is woke.More here from John Sexton:
And now we come to the Disney era and what's new this time, as Ben Shapiro points out, is we get to see a bunch of new characters killing the old ones we loved to advance a story that isn't 1/10th as compelling. I don't think people disliked Rey because she's a woman. I think they disliked her because she seemed to know everything without even trying.
For the last 25 years, a huge growth area for American higher education has been offices of "diversity and inclusion," which now provide highly paid pseudo-jobs for many thousands of administrators. At UCLA, the vice chancellor for equity, diversity, and inclusion rakes in a cool $444,000, for example.Make sure you read Professor Staddon's article.
Do we actually need any of this, however? In today’s Martin Center article, Duke University professor John Staddon argues that we don't. These make-work offices actually work at cross purposes with education. Their activities are "tangent to the university's core function, which is open and free debate in search of veritas."
Tuesday, June 26, 2018
In fact, not only is the IAT a poor predictor of behavior, the test itself is highly unreliable. As Heather Mac Donald noted last fall in the Wall Street Journal, "A person's IAT score can vary significantly each time he takes the test, undercutting its reliability as a psychological instrument."
Again, you don't say. I've taken the test several times, and apparently my own subconscious varies between woke and bigoted depending on the time of day or the placement of the images.
Yet an immense corporate, bureaucratic, and academic industry has been constructed around the concept of "implicit" or "unconscious" bias. It’s supposed to explain why disparate racial outcomes continue in spite of the fact that measures of explicit racism continue to decrease. It's supposed to answer why police still pull the trigger and shoot unarmed black men.
It does no such thing, of course. Instead, the unconscious-bias industry is a font of bad ideas. It diminishes personal responsibility, renders well-meaning, guilt-stricken Americans vulnerable to baseless ideological re-education, and empowers a corporate and academic elite that is by this point inexcusably rebuking Americans for made-up sins. Moreover, there is something inherently ominous about a corporation (much less the government) attempting not just to correct its employees' behavior but to reform their minds.