Good Articles That Don't Deserve Their Own Threads

doghouse

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Western notions of justice and freedom, the good life, come directly from the Judeo-Christian tradition
This is an often quote falsehood. These traditions far predate Judaism.

Like many other, you are looking at it the wrong way round. Judaism and Christianity were modeled on those concepts, the concepts didn't spring from the religions.
 

formby002

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That Unherd has some good stuff, from excellent journalists. Just getting into Douglas Murray's latest on Jordan Peterson vs The Crybabies and then there's Why I had to leave The Guardian....

Regarding Why I had to leave The Guardian I find it very hard to be sympathetic to Suzanne Moore.
 

formby002

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I've just finished reading that...

Even I had to chuckle when at the height of proverbial going down she ran off to Amsterdam on a ''Mushroom retreat.''

Watch the video, there's a bit about the 24:50min mark where she complains about the erasure and capture of language. Now where have we heard that critique before?

She's a very silly woman.
 

Rambo

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This is a great long piece that a few of you will enjoy.
 

formby002

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This is a great long piece that a few of you will enjoy.
The Village People mercilessly lampooned American machismo 40 odd years ago...
 

Journeyman

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I agree that there is some pressure now to adopt certain language and to eschew other language, and to adopt (or at least, to publicly profess) certain beliefs and to eschew other beliefs. I understand that some people disagree with this; some people think that it has gone too far; some people think that it tramples on free speech, or their right to free expression.

Howeer, whenever I read articles like this, stridently complaining about how "the Left" is ruining everything, how we're all "woke" now and so on, I can't help but think that - perhaps deliberately - the arguments tend to be very short-sighted, focussing only on the present and ignoring the past.

Certainly, nowadays there is a move to use gender-inclusive language, to be considerate of race and so on and so forth. Some may think that is a fantastic thing, others clearly think it's gone too far and is totally out of hand and oppressive.

But if you think that your speech and right to expression is limited now, think back only 40-50 years ago (or less, in some cases). Nowadays, you can't walk around disparaging homosexuals without being criticised - but go back a few decades and you'd lose your job and be a social outcast if you even went so far as to openly discuss homosexuality, or admitted to being homosexual. People were openly - and in some cases, entirely legally - discriminated against on the basis of their origin, skin colour or religion. If you advocated for equal rights for women, you could lose your job. In Australia, women were legally paid two-thirds as much as men for doing precisely the same job. If you advocated for unions and labour rights, you could be blacklisted as a Communist troublemaker.

All of those things were commonplace and largely accepted just a couple of generations ago, well within living memory. Self-censorship was common. Discrimination was common - and in many cases, entirely legal.

So political correctness and the insistence upon certain views and the pressure to express certain views existed decades ago. However, unlike today, it existed on the conservative side of society/politics and it was very widespread. That is almost totally ignored in today's conservative arguments.

Of course, that doesn't mean that "wokeness" hasn't gone too far. Nor does it mean that shouting down others for expressing unpopular views is a good thing. We should be open to diverse views, and open to debating those views.

However, nowadays, it seems that all too often conservative commentators of various stripes like to use this idea of "wokeness" as a political hatchet with which to attack "the Left". It strikes me that they do this not so much to score any sort of victory against political correctness but, rather, to signal to like-minded people that they're on the same side, fighting the same fight against the enemy. In other words, by inveighing against "wokeness" and political correctness, these people are engaging in their own form of virtue-signalling to each other - whilst loudly decrying virtue signalling at the same time. It's really very ironic.
 

Fwiffo

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I think I am one of the few besides Journeyman to be still taking public transit. Another unforeseen byproduct of people deserting the streets is the sheer amount of homeless people who are using empty subway, trains and trams as mobile shelters.

Last weekend I was going to Greektown and back and 1 in 4 on the subway were homeless.
 

ballmouse

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Most people who use public transit don't seem to have an alternate option, myself included. Taking cabs or owning a car would be far too much of a hassle and/or too expensive.
 

Journeyman

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Numbers are actually picking up where I live and are almost back to normal (well, up until the Christmas break). I must admit that I'm a bit disappointed - I was enjoying the solitude of having a train carriage almost to myself!

I live about twenty minutes from work - ten minutes' walk to the train station, ten minutes on the train and then a couple of minutes' walk from the station to the office. I do have some colleagues who quite regularly take an Uber to the office but they're single without kids and so have a higher disposable income.
 

Fwiffo

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Most people who use public transit don't seem to have an alternate option, myself included. Taking cabs or owning a car would be far too much of a hassle and/or too expensive.

Numbers are actually picking up where I live and are almost back to normal (well, up until the Christmas break). I must admit that I'm a bit disappointed - I was enjoying the solitude of having a train carriage almost to myself!

I live about twenty minutes from work - ten minutes' walk to the train station, ten minutes on the train and then a couple of minutes' walk from the station to the office. I do have some colleagues who quite regularly take an Uber to the office but they're single without kids and so have a higher disposable income.

I highly doubt being cocooned in a compact vehicle with an Uber driver who sees many different and sometimes not mask abiding riders every day is safe. That comes from a guy who uses Uber. Taxis are some of the worst. The drivers moan about customers not wearing masks or being asked by the municipal government to ferry people with known coronavirus infections to the quarantine hotels but I see them all the time milling around in front of the transit stations talking to each other in close quarters with their masks on their chins or in their taxi. You would think if you were so concerned about being infected you would stop consorting with other people who are high risk without protection.

Anyway it's good to hear that ridership is coming back. Besides the odd rush hour or bus routes coming from poorer neighbourhoods it's still a far cry from February here.
 

Journeyman

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It makes some good points, and I do think that eternal "wokefulness", always looking for something to criticise in someone's behaviour or statements, even if they were said years ago, is overdone.

However, as I said in my recent post a bit further upthread (see here), people writing these articles always neglect to mention that only four or five decades ago, the shoe was firmly on the other foot, so to speak.

Rather than being publicly criticised on social media, people who were homosexual, communist/socialist (or even just union organisers) or in favour of racial equality could be blacklisted, jailed, assaulted or (extrajudicially) even killed.

So when we look at the current "wokeness" fad, I think that we need to have some perspective. Yes, it can be frustrating, particularly if you disagree with it. However, I think that a lot of criticism of it is greatly exaggerated for political effect.

As I also said above, nowadays it seems that all too often conservative commentators of various stripes like to use this idea of "wokeness" as a political hatchet with which to attack "the Left". It strikes me that they do this not so much to score any sort of victory against political correctness but, rather, to signal to like-minded people that they're on the same side, fighting the same fight against the enemy. In other words, by inveighing against "wokeness" and political correctness, these people are engaging in their own form of "conservative" virtue-signalling to each other - whilst loudly decrying "woke" virtue signalling at the same time. It's really very ironic.
 

Dropbear

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My neighbor was telling me how the kids at his school would beat the shit out of him and call him a race traitor for suggesting that maybe integration wasn’t such a bad idea.
 

Kingstonian

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I think I am one of the few besides Journeyman to be still taking public transit. Another unforeseen byproduct of people deserting the streets is the sheer amount of homeless people who are using empty subway, trains and trams as mobile shelters.

Last weekend I was going to Greektown and back and 1 in 4 on the subway were homeless.
He talks about London. I still use trains, Tube and buses. The government are still going ahead with plans for HS2 an extremely expensive new rail service from London to Birmingham and possibly beyond. Petrol and diesel cars are targeted to be phased out and electric cars are not attracting much interest from the buying public.
 

Sammy Ambrose

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He talks about London. I still use trains, Tube and buses. The government are still going ahead with plans for HS2 an extremely expensive new rail service from London to Birmingham and possibly beyond. Petrol and diesel cars are targeted to be phased out and electric cars are not attracting much interest from the buying public.
Yes. I think you are right. The future could well be public transport. Just a walk to a bus stop or train station is free exercise for one thing.
 

Pimpernel Smith

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Critical Race Theory is itself racist as the article points out. Blacks as emotional cripples, passive, half noble savages/half still living on the plantation.

It is utterly unredeemable and needs to be called-out for what it is: racist.

He talks about London. I still use trains, Tube and buses. The government are still going ahead with plans for HS2 an extremely expensive new rail service from London to Birmingham and possibly beyond. Petrol and diesel cars are targeted to be phased out and electric cars are not attracting much interest from the buying public.

HS2 as I understand it has a freight element which will keep lorries off the road.

Electric cars are more expensive and double expensive++ on the highway and in cold weather.

The range is a problem and there's no solution to replace lorries in time for 2030.
Yes. I think you are right. The future could well be public transport. Just a walk to a bus stop or train station is free exercise for one thing.
I did go car free for the commute to work in the early 2010's. Bike was okay, but on public transport what would take 15 mins by car would take 45-an hour plus each way. Then you have the problem of delays, over crowded and over heated carriages in winter. I always had two heavy colds/flu each of those years.
 

Fwiffo

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He talks about London. I still use trains, Tube and buses. The government are still going ahead with plans for HS2 an extremely expensive new rail service from London to Birmingham and possibly beyond. Petrol and diesel cars are targeted to be phased out and electric cars are not attracting much interest from the buying public.

Yes. I think you are right. The future could well be public transport. Just a walk to a bus stop or train station is free exercise for one thing.

I posted this against the context of the current slate of bureaucrats and medical scientists who advocate we should all drive motor vehicles - one per vehicle - to be safe. That there will be covid-20, 21, 22, 23 and humanity ought to live in places that aren't dense so they can self isolate at a moment's notice. Everyone works from home. Everything is online. There is even talk of halting new zoning for commercial buildings in my city because who will go to the office? Current vacant offices should be given to the homeless - another ingenious idea to erode or erase whatever capital is remaining.
 

formby002

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1609705878093.png
 

Pimpernel Smith

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The early 90s were pretty drab compared to the 80s. The best you could say was that there was enough left over of the 80s for you to not notice at times.

Things started to become more interesting at the dot.com bubble time. But the summers in the UK were particularly crap the middle of the 90s until 2003. It was a good era for modern jazz CD reissue. If you liked that kind of thing, and I did.

It was the last hurrah of the big extended family weddings, that's vanished along with the the old timers. The 50th anniversary of WWII was in 95 and I went to an excellent boat party to which an ex-RAF Mustang pilot attended who saw the last six weeks of the war flying over Germany. Didn't engage the enemy, but he said Germany was flattened.

The article mentions the innocence of the time. I don't remember the 90s as particularly innocent, there was online internet culture emerging and there had been the first Gulf war. But even in 1999, I remember digital cameras being perceived as a fad that would never over take film.

I don't miss the 1990s, no nostalgia for that decade or my twenties in general. A few good concerts, not that many, great nights out that invariably ended in a Chinese or Indian restaurant and the days at the races. Lots of one night stands and dates that never developed into anything meaningful.
 

formby002

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Rambo

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Interesting:

i havent read the article yet but did you feel that their power was somewhat concealed before?
 

ballmouse

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The 90s were my childhood. I do remember this sort of homogeneous mainstream culture that existed. However beneath that I felt the 90s had this sort of underground, alternative culture which was fairly separate from the norm. That's not to say no other decade had such a culture. I think the 90s were sort of the last decade where aspects of underground culture did not really crossover into the mainstream like they do today (at least until companies started to realize anything - no matter how underground it is - can be capitalized upon which I think has become fairly commonplace nowadays). Now there is something mainstream about everything: videogames (esports), pornography (Stormy Daniels, pornhub), electronic music, ethnic food, surfing (now an olympic sport), etc.

But in the 90s, the internet hadn't really become commonplace and there's a lot your average person would not know anything about for certain topics. Today, he or she probably can carry a superficial conversation about the subject with some selective name drops or keywords. In some sense, that was the last time where underground culture was previously known only to those who participated in it as opposed to now where even if you've never done it or experienced something you still know about it.
 

Fwiffo

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“After the University of California system announced last year that it was no longer requiring applicants to submit scores from the SAT or ACT (a test run by the College Board’s competitor), some educators heard the death knell sound for the SAT. When the pandemic left thousands of students with no opportunity to take the exam, many more colleges set aside the testing requirement for this year. That precedent, combined with the large number of institutions that had already made the test optional, suggests the College Board is losing its captive audience.”

People can’t take an SAT online? There are so many sample tests and exercises already released.

“Indeed, it’s likely the SAT has outlived its usefulness. Though premised on a noble concept — leveling the playing field for college applicants — most admissions officers believe the test is unhelpful to institutions seeking to diversify their student bodies. Both the content of the test and the industry that surrounds it have become barriers for students from less privileged backgrounds.”

So universities will just let in any Tom, Dick or Harry because it adds to the diversity.
 
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