January 1, 2017

"decided to become" — Is that politically correct?

I'm reading the front page of the paper version of the NYT. There's this, right at the bottom:



Is that just a slip by the NYT or did I miss a memo?

Here's the underlying article, in the "Fashion & Style" section — is it fashion/style?! — "My Father, the Shapeshifter/In a book about her enigmatic father, Susan Faludi explores the very meaning of gender and identity."

"Decided" is Faludi's word:

“In the summer of 2004, I received an email from my father with the subject line ‘Changes,’” she began, her soft voice occasionally drowned out by cars racing up the canyon. “My father lived in Hungary, and it was the first communication I’d received from him in many years. He said he had some interesting news for me. He had decided, at the age of 76, that he’d had enough of, quote, impersonating a macho, aggressive man. There was a series of snapshots attached to the message. The first one showed my father standing in a hospital lobby in a sleeveless blouse and red skirt. Beside him were, as he wrote in the note, ‘the other post-op girls’ — two patients who were also making ‘the change.’”
Also:
“He was always trying on different personae,” Ms. Faludi recalled. “Most of them at the time were frenetic sportsman identities — rock climber, ice climber, extreme cyclist.”

Walled-off and despotic, Mr. Faludi could also be abusive. Ms. Faludi’s parents separated when she was 16; one night the next year, her father violated a restraining order and returned to their home to attack the boyfriend of Ms. Faludi’s mother with a baseball bat and a knife. For the next two and a half decades, Ms. Faludi had little contact with him....

The elusiveness of identity is Ms. Faludi’s idée fixe. She is suspicious of efforts by her father or anyone else to reduce gender — not to mention sexual, racial or national identity — to an either/or proposition. “All the years she was alive,” she writes of her father, “she’d sought to settle the question of who she was. Jew or Christian? Hungarian or American? Woman or man? So many oppositions.”

132 comments:

Michael K said...

Ms Faludi would do well to read Thomas Sowell's final column.

I hope he wrong about this being the 1930s again but the 1930s Berlin scene as shown in "Cabaret," seems similar to the weird behavior of self proclaimed "elites" today.

Sebastian said...

"one night the next year, her father violated a restraining order and returned to their home to attack the boyfriend of Ms. Faludi’s mother with a baseball bat and a knife." Should have been a sign: surely only a woman scorned would do such a thing.

"The elusiveness of identity is Ms. Faludi’s idée fixe." That's the real un-PC point: identity is elusive just until xe has found their correct identity. Then it is set and settled, to be accommodated and not to be challenged in any way.

tcrosse said...

I'm a woman, goddammit, and anybody who says I'm not can suck my dick.

Oso Negro said...

I suspect that the time will come around again when homosexuality, trans-genderism, and the entire alphabet of perversions that we are expected to not only tolerate, but celebrate, will again be seen as forms of psychiatric disorder. I only regret that we didn't choose to mainstream my sexual deviancy.

Birkel said...

...‘the other post-op girls’...

This should bring disagreement from all sides.

Carol said...

Oh wow, life is a stage and we are all actors. What a surprise. Yes there is a lot of role-playing going on. It's something to do with civilization. It's no wonder kids grow up with no idea where they're going or what they want to do. There's too much navel gazing and wondering at our own essences.

Anyway, he probably made a better man they he'll make a woman.

traditionalguy said...

Suicide by Surgeon. It's spreading as meaningless life without the real Savior suddenly becomes unbearable.

Rejoice. It's Sunday coming down. Meaning in life is available.

Laslo Spatula said...

Women generally live longer than men.

Perhaps, at his age, he is hoping that becoming a woman will extend his mortality.

Because it works that way.

I am Laslo.

robinintn said...

"...could be abusive." That's one way to whitewash a violent criminal. But why pay any attention at all to such worthless trash? Or, more to the point, why should I?

Mark said...

Even asking if it was "politically correct," rather than ignorant, hateful and factually correct is politically incorrect to the extreme because, you see, it is not merely a matter of description, trans-people do not to choose to be that, they are born that way. Even to ask why in the hell nature would give a woman a "man's" body in the first place is offensive.

Anglelyne said...

Sebastian: "one night the next year, her father violated a restraining order and returned to their home to attack the boyfriend of Ms. Faludi’s mother with a baseball bat and a knife." Should have been a sign: surely only a woman scorned would do such a thing.

Good one, S.

Anglelyne said...

Michael K: I hope he wrong about this being the 1930s again but the 1930s Berlin scene as shown in "Cabaret," seems similar to the weird behavior of self proclaimed "elites" today.

Contemporary pundits and "opinion makers"* do seem to be an emotionally and intellectually retarded, fucked-up lot, don't they?

*People who get media space based on having the "correct social network" credential and apparently no other qualification, not even above-middling intellect.

Hagar said...

It does seem to me that people with sexual "differences" get more obsessed about sex than normal people.

rhhardin said...

What does this do to the workload we impose on pronouns.

Michael The Magnificent said...

If grandma had wheels, she would be a wagon.

exiledonmainstreet said...

I haven't heard that much about Susan Faludi since she was quarreling with Camille Paglia back in the '90's. I just assumed she had gone the way of Hooty and the Blowfish. How wonderfully convenient for her that her father fashionably decided to change sex and thus furnished her with a chance to regain the media spotlight.

madAsHell said...

My grandfather lost his prostate to cancer at around 76 years of age. He was already crippled with Parkinson's, but losing his man parts drove him to attempt suicide.

madAsHell said...

How wonderfully convenient for her that her father fashionably decided to change sex and thus furnished her with a chance to regain the media spotlight.

I find the story convenient as well.

rhhardin said...

Well, l'd got so used to having them come up benign. Guess I just didn't expect it. I sure wish I would've had longer to get used to the idea. You think if you got no uterus... ...and no breasts... ...you're still technically a woman?

Sure you are. Yeah, you just-- You're actually a happier woman. No need to worry about maxi-pads and underwire.

- Erin Brockovich

rhhardin said...

If he became a woman he figured he'd die a happy man.

exiledonmainstreet said...

Oso Negro said...
I suspect that the time will come around again when homosexuality, trans-genderism, and the entire alphabet of perversions that we are expected to not only tolerate, but celebrate, will again be seen as forms of psychiatric disorder."

Massive Muslim immigration into Europe will certainly do the trick there. They don't send gays and trannies to shrinks, however. They take them up on rooftops and send them to meet the pavement.

Anglelyne said...

exiledonmainstreet: I haven't heard that much about Susan Faludi since she was quarreling with Camille Paglia back in the '90's. I just assumed she had gone the way of Hooty and the Blowfish. How wonderfully convenient for her that her father fashionably decided to change sex and thus furnished her with a chance to regain the media spotlight.

On the plus side, hers is a relatively a harmless bid for attention and relevance. Her dad can fend for himself, unlike the status-signalling, attention-whore facebook moms jumping on the tranny-wagon via their helpless small children.

Birkel said...

exiledonmainstreet:

Hootie (Darius Rucker) of Hootie and the Blowfish fame has had a great career since the 1990s.

Just fyi.

rhhardin said...

Why ask of other than your own name as your pronoun?

Accept no substitutes.

Guildofcannonballs said...

This is cruel.

I ought be able to link "slip," as in "your slip is showing," to the NYT and their shadowy hidden motives*, based upon their superiority in feeling superior to the flyover jackass Neanderthals just living and loving. Funny thing is, these fjN's live near Lake Superior. Hah!

Damn booze last night took away today's brilliant, genius-level wit.

*What Does Abe Foxman Think?

A Bobby Knight "bury me upside down so all y'all yous can kiss my ass" to the criticx!

Bay Area Guy said...

Not only do I believe that gender should be self-identified, but ethnicity too.

Therefore, I have "decided" to self-identify as an Eskimo this year. And anyone who fails to recognize my Eskimo heritage is a patriarchal oppressor.

buwaya said...

There are fashions in madness, or in its mode of expression.
There arent a lot of people pretending to be Napoleon these days, though it was quite a thing in the 19th century.
The mentally unstable, the socially disconnected and the unhappy are even more suggestible than most.

Guildofcannonballs said...

If someone says you need to give "110%" is it a test?

Like golf, and poker, in many ways the loser wins by losing gracefully. Meta winner, Buckley-style.

Or, losers lose even more, meta again, losing sans the grace.

So with this in mind, how should one respond if asked to give "110%?"

"Okay yeah sure 100 per cent plus ten I'll give, if we define 100% as 70%."

How 'bout that? What you think about that?

buwaya said...

I am disappointed in the lack of originality among the modern mad. They are content to follow bandwagons, and not find their own unique, imaginative delusions.

Freder Frederson said...

Ms Faludi would do well to read Thomas Sowell's final column.

For those of you who don't bother to read it. I can sum it up: "Get these damn kids off my lawn!"

Anglelyne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Birkel said...

Freder Frederson:

You really aren't that interesting or bright.

Birkel said...

Also, Freder Frederson, I have it on good authority these last eight years that your criticism of Dr. Thomas Sowell can only be motivated by racism.

Why are Democrats so racist?

Guildofcannonballs said...

"The mentally unstable, the socially disconnected and the unhappy are even more suggestible than most."

Everyone is more suggestible than most?

Hmmm.

buwaya said...

Most people seem to be happy (enough) and not desperate or mad, even in weird places like San Francisco.
Your local situation may be different of course.

wildswan said...

Hillary Clinton decides to become a man and run for President as a Republican against Donald Trump. "All my life I've wanted to be a patriarchal oppressor like Bill and Donald Trump and have fun. But I thought I had to be a woman to get the feminist vote and be President so I that I could be a tyrant, my lifelong goal. Now I see that as a tranny patriarchal oppressor I'll get the votes of major identity groups because I'll have all identities, not just one. Plus I can be a tyrant both before and after I get elected. I've got total support from feminists because many feminists have other lives in the closet. Gloria Allred has repurposed as Marilyn Monroe by night. People don't realize. This is America - live your dreams. I've got a baseball bat ready to play in the majors and beat Huma. What a country - Gaia bless America."

Freder Frederson said...

Also, Freder Frederson, I have it on good authority these last eight years that your criticism of Dr. Thomas Sowell can only be motivated by racism.

It amuses me to no end that for all your bellyaching about PC and how you can't criticize any minorities or women for fear of being called a bigot, you fall back on the very same critique when someone on the left is critical of Black conservatives or Israel.

Not only do I believe that gender should be self-identified, but ethnicity too.

Actually, ethnicity is self-identified. You are being too clever by half. And if you can get an Eskimo tribe to go along with your self-identification, then you can even be officially declared one.

mockturtle said...

Michael K's comment regarding the lifestyle in pre-WWII Berlin portrayed in Cabaret was apt. Usually, when hedonism runs its course, it is followed by a restrictive, controlling form of government. It's like a pendulum swinging from one extreme to another.

mockturtle said...

Fredo announces: Actually, ethnicity is self-identified.

By all means, let us throw DNA out of the picture.

Birkel said...

Yes, Freder Frederson. I am sure you are greatly amused by my attempt to "Pick the Target, Freeze It, Personalize It and Polarize It" and "“Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules."

No doubt you will spend hours wondering how I came up with such strategy.

Racist.

Freder Frederson said...

Michael K's comment regarding the lifestyle in pre-WWII Berlin portrayed in Cabaret was apt.

But his point is incoherent. Is he trying to say that if there is a backlash against hedonism that leads to a right wing fascist government, it is the fault of the liberals.

Talk about blaming the victim.

Freder Frederson said...

No doubt you will spend hours wondering how I came up with such strategy.

It is ironic that conservatives are more familiar with Rules for Radicals than any liberal I know (and I had to Google it to make sure I had the title right).

Darrell said...

Lefties are blameless. The mentally ill usually are.

buwaya said...

If gender can be self-identified, so can anything else, including social status, wealth, race, ethnicity, species, physical/spiritual nature, mental capacity, professional credentials, political offices, paranormal abilities, etc. ad infinitum.
These people (transgenders, etc.) are all Emperor Nortons, its just that they are copycats. And that they are taken seriously. Why them, and not the other "Emperor Nortons"? Why not take the fellow seriously who imagines he is a goat or wildebeest?

exiledonmainstreet said...

Freder, you might not be familiar with "Rules for Radicals" but your masters are. You're just one of the sad tools they are able to manipulate.

Quaestor said...

Birkel wrote: Hootie (Darius Rucker) of Hootie and the Blowfish fame has had a great career since the 1990s.

Is that a Trump great or an Obama great?

Or is it a typo and Hooty has in fact given up music for a career in the cheese biz?

Darrell said...

is ironic that conservatives are more familiar with Rules for Radicals than any liberal I know

Because it is taught as fact without attribution in almost every school in the country. Obumbo is shown with the rules on a blackboard for his Law class at the Univ. of Chicago in that famous photo.

buwaya said...

Your personal aquaintances, Freder, do not define your "side".
Alinsky has been required reading in a great many university courses for "professional activists" for a very long time.
Its one of a set of foundational texts, like Marcuse.

Birkel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Quaestor said...

Freder Frederson wrote: It is ironic that conservatives are more familiar with Rules for Radicals than any liberal I know.

Hardly ironic, Freder. There's another I-word that fits better.

Birkel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Birkel said...

Quaestor:

It is surprising that so many racist, country music living rednecks across this land have bought Darius Rucker albums.

Rucker does well by any definition.

Birkel said...

Freder Frederson:

I have no doubt that you know less, on average, than conservatives.

Specifically, you have had no reason to study the other side, content in your assumption that the MSM, universities, Hollywood and the federal bureaucracy would keep you on "the right side of history".

Welcome to the Trump Administration.

Quaestor said...

Talk about blaming the victim.

There's the I-word at work again.

Original Mike said...

Looks like 2017 isn't going to be the year that Freder matures. Maybe next year.

Quaestor said...

Birkel:

And what of the Blowfish, did they share some badly sliced fugu or something?

lemondog said...

Why at age 76 would he put himself through elective surgery risking blood clots, infections or other complications, when he could just don a wig, lipstick and high heels?

Hungary has universal healthcare .....so whoppee

Original Mike said...

"It is ironic that conservatives are more familiar with Rules for Radicals than any liberal I know (and I had to Google it to make sure I had the title right)."

Somebody needs to tell Freder about Hillary's senior thesis.

On second thought, don't bother. He won't listen.

Mr Wibble said...

I hope he wrong about this being the 1930s again but the 1930s Berlin scene as shown in "Cabaret," seems similar to the weird behavior of self proclaimed "elites" today.

I think that the so-called "elites" have always believed that the rules didn't apply to them. This includes the laws that the rest of the country lives by, or the "rules" by which middle class people try to live their life.

Lewis Wetzel said...

mockturtle said...
Fredo announces: Actually, ethnicity is self-identified.

By all means, let us throw DNA out of the picture.

1/1/17, 11:24 AM

Frederson is more right than wrong, here. Often ethnicity is a matter of self-identification. It's the Achilles' heel of government programs which identify people by race or ethnicity for special treatment. I am 1/8 Cherokee, but my family was never registered on the tribal rolls, so I am not (and can likely never be) considered Cherokee by actual members of the Cherokee nation. So am I native American?
I am if I say so. The white man is not allowed to define who is and who is not native American, at least from the POV of native Americans.

mockturtle said...

These people (transgenders, etc.) are all Emperor Nortons, its just that they are copycats. And that they are taken seriously. Why them, and not the other "Emperor Nortons"? Why not take the fellow seriously who imagines he is a goat or wildebeest?

And why would those who claim to be Jesus Christ or Napoleon be labeled psychotic when they are merely 'self-identifying'?

buwaya said...

Re ethnicity -
Ditto. Our kids could plausibly say they are "Asian", or "Hispanic", or easily pass as "white", whichever better suits the situation.
This is an extremely common case in California. Such distinctions built into public and private policies are beginning to enter the region of the absurd.

tcrosse said...

Often ethnicity is a matter of self-identification. It's the Achilles' heel of government programs which identify people by race or ethnicity for special treatment.
Which brings up the old One Drop Rule for determining who is African-American and who is not, although it's usually not self-determined.

Birkel said...

Lewis Wetzel:

Applying 'the one drop rule' has always been a bit of a problem since Democrats introduced it. Democrats love(d) some racism.

If you are Cherokee, which band? The Eastern Band closed the rolls when they contracted with Harrah's and you have no chance of enrolling now. The Western Band also has a casino interest so that may be closed too.

The two Bands are at odds on many things. And it goes back to the Trail of Tears.

Birkel said...

(I typed my last without refreshing to see the post by tcrosse.)

Guildofcannonballs said...

Belief in the fallacy of "mental stability" proves oneself mentally unstable.

This isn't a bad thing, even though Inused those words in that order.

Everyone is mentally unstable. For goodness and badness, like carbon present.

TWW said...

To be really politically incorrect: Who gives a rat's ass...other than a few effete, liberal outliers living on the upper west side of Manhattan?

Original Mike said...

The City of Madison sent us an involved survey on our household transportation habits. My wife and I dutifully filled out the surveys and the logs and sent them back. Didn't like the question about our household income but I see the relevance so we answered it. But we balked when they asked our race/ethnicity. What's the relevance of that?

These people see everything through the lens of race, but we done have to facilitate their obsession.

Birkel said...

Can somebody point me to the code I can install to avoid having to manually skip EVERY ONE of the posts by Guildofcannonballs, please.

I find manually skipping its posts entirely too bothersome.

Original Mike said...

done = don't

mockturtle said...

Buwaya notes: Such distinctions built into public and private policies are beginning to enter the region of the absurd.

Ethnicity-based policies of any kind are absurd.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger Birkel said...
Lewis Wetzel:

Applying 'the one drop rule' has always been a bit of a problem since Democrats introduced it. Democrats love(d) some racism.

If you are Cherokee, which band? The Eastern Band closed the rolls when they contracted with Harrah's and you have no chance of enrolling now. The Western Band also has a casino interest so that may be closed too.


My native American ancestor owned land in Georgia at the time of the trail of tears. Owning land meant that he paid taxes, e.g., he was not an "Indian not taxed." He was not subject to any of the Indian removal acts.
My 100% Cherokee great grandmother was born in Georgia around 1860.
I think that recognized sovereign tribes are allowed to adopt new members, regardless of their heritage, but the feds might have something to say about that.

The Hawaiian sovereignty movement has a real race problem. An awful lot people had no Hawaiian blood, but were subjects of the Hawaiian Kingdom prior to its overthrow in 1892. Are the descendants of these people Hawaiian, or not?

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

The article is misplaced in "Fashion & Style." It bolongs with Carrie Fisher's work in "Fiction by Female Writers Trashing Their Parents to Goose Book Sales."

We came close to bailing out of the story after the first two paragraphs. Word counts of the four sentences were: 47, 38, 28, and 49.

We fought off an anxiety attack in the third paragraph. The second sentence contained a "quote" but no "end quote."

The third paragraph was a single sentence, word count 82. We raised the seat arming handles and squeezed the eject trigger.

mockturtle said...

Lewis, a Virginian ancestor of mine apparently attempted to prove her Cherokee ancestry, presumably for monetary gain, but was denied by the government. Perhaps the Cherokees would have accepted her as a Cherokee but she lacked the necessary ethnicity to fulfill the 'Indian' rule. My DNA results show <1% Native American, which I found a bit disappointing, as I had hoped for higher. Are you related, by chance, to the Weatherfords?

Birkel said...

Lewis Wetzel:

The Eastern Band closed the rolls. They do not wish to spread their wealth thinner than they must. It has nothing to do with what is allowed by the federal government. It is about the per capita distributions from the casino contract(s).

President Obama notwithstanding, the Eastern Band believes they did build that Harrah's and that at no point have they made enough money.

FullMoon said...

Have noticed a lack of Ms. Jenner on the sidebars lately. Rest of family still exists.

Ambrose said...

Way to go. Make them follow their own rules.

Original Mike said...

"I find manually skipping its posts entirely too bothersome."

It can be a lot of work.

Paco Wové said...

Blog Comment Killfile

rhhardin said...

I'm not Cherokee but I did learn to fly in a Piper Cub.

Birkel said...

Bookmarked.
Thank you, Paco Wove (without the special character, apologies).

Anglelyne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anglelyne said...

Freder to mock: "Michael K's comment regarding the lifestyle in pre-WWII Berlin portrayed in Cabaret was apt."

But his point is incoherent. Is he trying to say that if there is a backlash against hedonism that leads to a right wing fascist government, it is the fault of the liberals.


No, he's talking about the common features of inflection points in history when the existing "elites" are in the process of being judged unfit to rule by people who have some chance of being able to do something about it.

"Elites" are with us always, but tend to forget that they're always on trial and that they have continually to justify their status. They can trundle along in corruption and incompetence for a long time, but sooner or later there comes the point when they have to put out - i.e. rule competently enough to satisfy, or at least mollify, the populace - or piss off. The form of that pissing off - voluntary or forced, minimally disruptive or terribly destructive - varies in time and place.

That you're incapable of understanding the point in terms of anything but parochial Hitler Comix buzz words ("right wing fascists!") doesn't surprise me.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

Best way for Ms. Faludi to get revenge would be to have a dick sewn on. Say nothing publicly. Email your offspring a selfie with the new appendage.

Guildofcannonballs said...

Beasts, prey/burden/amusement etc., should be said to be more mentally stable than a functional human being.

It is the unstablility that makes us human to, extentwise, terminal degrees.

Paco Wové said...

It's not perfect (if you view the comment threads via the "XX comments" link, rather than the timestamp link or the whole-post link, all comments will still show up), but it helps.

n.n said...

It's his Choice.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Birkel said...
Lewis Wetzel:

The Eastern Band closed the rolls. They do not wish to spread their wealth thinner than they must. It has nothing to do with what is allowed by the federal government. It is about the per capita distributions from the casino contract(s).

President Obama notwithstanding, the Eastern Band believes they did build that Harrah's and that at no point have they made enough money.


I'd heard of our family's native American ancestry, but I never bothered to research it until I worked with a fellow, as blonde-haired and blue-eyed as I am, who got an annual check from the Cherokee. He called it his "Indian money."
Alas, I am not entitled to "Indian money" :(
To be honest, the native Americans I trace my ancestry to seemed to be culturally white trash. It can't be an Indian custom to give kids names like "General" and "Queen Victoria."
But I can call myself whatever I want. I always check "Native American" on any forms that ask about ethnicity. No one has ever questioned me about it, but I suppose a "real" Indian might call me out.

n.n said...

There arent a lot of people pretending to be Napoleon these days

She chose. She conceived. She aborted.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger mockturtle said...
Are you related, by chance, to the Weatherfords?

The surname of my native American ancestor was "Rewis" (spelling varied).

Birkel said...

Lewis Wetzel:

The Eastern Band Cherokee call it "per cap".

Michael K said...

But his point is incoherent. Is he trying to say that if there is a backlash against hedonism that leads to a right wing fascist government, it is the fault of the liberals.

Of course it will be the fault of the left, which is by no means "liberal."

Ask the Christian bakery that was bankrupted by the leftist Oregon administrative "judge." At least he lost his next election,
Do you think that people who are just trying to live their lives will put up with this crap from lefties without striking back ?

We will not get a "right wing fascist government" here. First, because Fascism is a leftist ideology.

Second, because as Thomas Wolfe said, "Fascism is always descending on the US but always ends up landing in Europe."

I think there may really be a "right wing" reaction in Germany and Austria.

You lefties always think you know better and then a Trump comes along and you get hysterical thinking that the Russians rigged the election.

It would be hysterical if it were not so sad. Fantasy certainly has its attractions among the poorly educated.

walter said...

Front page....

Jupiter said...

mockturtle said...
"Michael K's comment regarding the lifestyle in pre-WWII Berlin portrayed in Cabaret was apt. Usually, when hedonism runs its course, it is followed by a restrictive, controlling form of government. It's like a pendulum swinging from one extreme to another."

I wonder. A pendulum has a point of stability. Hang it straight down and it will remain there. And, in fact, over time a swinging pendulum will slow until it reaches that stable point. I doubt that there is any such point in human affairs, short of the eventual extinction of the race.

I think your analysis is accurate, but leaves out a critical step. Widespread hedonism is a product of societal wealth, which leads to the view that the self-denial and striving of the ancestors is no longer necessary. The combination of great wealth with societal weakness leads to invasion and anarchy. It is the period of invasion and anarchy which brings about the willingness to accept authoritarian government. Then, as the anarchy recedes and wealth accumulates, the strictures of authority become unacceptable once more.

mockturtle said...

Anglelyne states: "Elites" are with us always, but tend to forget that they're always on trial and that they have continually to justify their status.

To which Charles I of England would attest.

mockturtle said...

By Jupiter: Widespread hedonism is a product of societal wealth, which leads to the view that the self-denial and striving of the ancestors is no longer necessary.

A phenomenon well-portrayed in Pear Buck's great novel, The Good Earth.

Jupiter said...

I think we largely missed Althouse's point. *Was* there a memo? Is it now acceptable to say that a man "decided" to become a woman? Wasn't the established doctrine, settled for lo these many months, that a person with a Y chromosome "discovers", through introspection, that he has the psyche of a person with two X chromosomes? "Decided" sounds like he went through his closet and decided to wear shorts today. So, yeah. Fashion and Style.

"If I've only one life to live, let me live it as a member of a savagely oppressed majority." Makes sense.

rhhardin said...

I wonder. A pendulum has a point of stability. Hang it straight down and it will remain there.

Not if you change its gender.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger Michael K said...
. . .
Of course it will be the fault of the left, which is by no means "liberal."

Ask the Christian bakery that was bankrupted by the leftist Oregon administrative "judge."

The first time a liberal referred to Trump as an "authoritarian", I laughed out loud. I honestly thought he was going for a joke. In the US, you will find no more authoritarian an environment than a college campus. There is no rule of law, justice is meted out by secret courts, dissent is shouted down by the mob. From top to bottom the academic culture is a creation of political liberals.

Yancey Ward said...

Like a few of the commenters above, I have my suspicions about whether or not this book is non-fiction. Coming from this particular writer, the story does sound extremely convenient.

Fernandinande said...

Paco Wové said...
Blog Comment Killfile


Near as I can tell, the firefox version doesn't work on blogger.com

rhhardin said...

Gender changing first appeared in electronics.

Engineers think of analogies before social justice warriors.

Yancey Ward said...

As to the wording of the article, I suspect it is simply a case that political correctness has reached that baroque point that no small group of people can (here writers and editors) can remember all the rules under which they operate.

rhhardin said...

You have to child-proof all the female plugs in the house, so strong is the generalized male instinct.

mockturtle said...

Jupiter asserts: A pendulum has a point of stability. Hang it straight down and it will remain there. And, in fact, over time a swinging pendulum will slow until it reaches that stable point.

I suppose I could enlarge upon my analogy by comparing the tension and gravity forces of energy at various points of the pendulum's arc to socioeconomic forces. But I won't.

Lewis Wetzel said...

The idea that there is a non-sexed human being who has a gender imposed on him/her by society has its source in the old Gnostic heresy. The spirit is pure and sexless, imprisoned within corrupt flesh, said the Gnostics. There is nothing new under the sun.
People who do not develop secondary sex characteristics are not normal or healthy. They are subject to a number of maladies. Humans evolved to be male or female, not something in between, or something that can change from one sex to another. The changes to the body caused by sex hormones are too profound to be easily changed, and if you don't have sex hormones, the pituitary keeps producing growth hormones, and so on.
A man in a dress is a man in a dress, not a woman.

William said...

There's something in nature that doesn't like a wall. This is probably more true of ethnic than sexual differences,. It's certainly easier to hop some walls rather than others. According to Ancestry.com , I have a significant amount of Anglo-Saxon and Jewish DNA. This is probably due to my ancestors being in domestic service back in the 19th century. Jefferson, Tolstoy, and Clinton weren't the only landowners who fooled around with the help and, quite frankly, the morals of my family have never been all that they could be......I always felt more Irish than anything else, but I think all true Americans are defined by their ambiguity about their ethnic heritage. Even if you're monoethnic, the tidal pull of American culture pulls you off your moorings.......I wouldn't recommend a sex change operation or a face lift to someone in old age. There's something in nature that doesn't like general anesthesia in old age.

rhhardin said...

Freedom of the dress.

Sydney said...

Slightly off topic but related, the Obama HHS quietly changed the meaning of sex discrimination in healthcare to " gender" discrimination and abortion discrimination. The change was to take effect this month, but was blocked yesterday by a federal judge.. I had been completely unaware of this, the sneaky bastards. Thank goodness some professional organzations and states, including Wisconsin, were paying attention and challenged the change.

Michael K said...

Widespread hedonism is a product of societal wealth, which leads to the view that the self-denial and striving of the ancestors is no longer necessary.

I disagree. You should read David Goldman's "How Civilizations Die" for another possible answer.

It is a symbol of a dying culture. He is optimistic about America (I have been reading him for years as "Spengler" in Asia Times.) but Europe and the Muslim world is doomed in his opinion. First those cultures stop having children. Then they spend their time in hedonism and pleasure since being childless removes obligations. It's an interesting read. For example, in Iran university educated women work as prostitutes and have no children.

Fred Drinkwater said...

Let's see. I have a name which is frequently assumed to be native. I have a relative by marriage, one Mr. Brokenleg, who is Lakota. I did my PP-SEL training in a Piper Cherokee II.
Do I win a prize?

mockturtle said...

Per Michel K's assertion: Globally, the Muslim population is forecast to grow at about twice the rate of the non-Muslim population over the next two decades

From the Pew Research Center.

Anglelyne said...

Jupiter: I think your analysis is accurate, but leaves out a critical step. Widespread hedonism is a product of societal wealth, which leads to the view that the self-denial and striving of the ancestors is no longer necessary. The combination of great wealth with societal weakness leads to invasion and anarchy. It is the period of invasion and anarchy which brings about the willingness to accept authoritarian government. Then, as the anarchy recedes and wealth accumulates, the strictures of authority become unacceptable once more.

Yup, pretty much. But the interesting thing to me, as we've rolled through the wealth-to-weakness-and-decadence stage of late modernity, has been the decades-long meek acceptance of ever-growing, ham-handed left-authoritarianism in every institution, by just about everybody. (Also interesting is that few recognize and label it for what it is: rank control-freak authoritarianism.)

There's a precedent for this in communist societies of the 20th-century, of course. (But they skipped the fun part - widespread wealth and comfort - and went straight from hard times and dysfunction to decadence and dysfunction). Has having ideological inquisitors bedeviling every nook-and-cranny of society ever been a feature in the decline of previous wealthy and successful societies? I don't know. I just think it would be nice if we could have a proper fais ce que tu voudras decadent stage, instead of one with an ubiquitous progressive mutaween breathing down our necks, demanding compliance to their bizarro-world virtues and notions of purity.

Birkel said...

mockturtle:

Do you have a similar statistic for Mormons?

And is that twice the rate of Chinese, Japanese and Western Europeans? As I recall zero times any number is zero.

More directly: Rates of growth can be highly deceptive.

Michael K said...

Per Michel K's assertion: Globally, the Muslim population is forecast to grow at about twice the rate of the non-Muslim population over the next two decades

Not what Goldman says. The birthrate in Iran is 1.5 per female. The only Muslim countries above replacement are Mali, Afghanistan and Sudan. Literacy makes the birth rate crash.

He believes that the suicidal behavior of Muslim radicals is because of their dying civilization.

hstad said...

"Actually, ethnicity is self-identified." So said Elizabeth Warren and all the hucksters....

http://www.naturalnews.com/050056_gender_self-identity_trans-species_human_race.html

Fred Drinkwater said...

Rhhardin
Yes. I used to have a drawer filled with sex changers for pretty much every species of connection.
No gender changers, though.

n.n said...

Gender is easy, because it is merely behavioral characteristics which may or may not be overlaid with cosmetic changes. Anyone can reverse roles to greater and lesser degrees to suit a context or generally. Sex is hard, since it requires genetic modification.

In any case, the new hope is to emphasize Choice, because: No Judgment.

tcrosse said...

As a Scots-Irish-German, French-Canadian-Swiss I cling to my ethnic identity, but like to pretend I'm Hungarian. Sajnos.

mockturtle said...

As a child I wanted to be Japanese. But I wasn't.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Baby I was born this way, and also I define my gender and sex and it's my body my choice and if you don't immediately agree with how I choose to define myself at any given moment then you are an unforgivable bigot.

What's so hard to understand, Professor?

Jupiter said...

Michael K,

I have read Goldman's book. I think the same analysis applies. The difference is that Western Civilization has been made irrelevant by its own success, while the Islamic ideology has been made obsolete by the success of the West. In both cases, a worldview that developed in a time of scarcity, and made sense in that milieu, begins to appear absurd and needlessly restrictive when rising material wealth makes the individual less dependent on the group.

Goldman wrote in 2011, and as I recall, he was largely concerned with Islam in the Middle East. It is possible that his predictions are accurate with respect to that Islamic subgroup, but not with Islam as a whole. It is difficult to believe that the Conquest of Europe is being carried out by a dying ideology.

Jupiter said...

Fred Drinkwater said...
"I used to have a drawer filled with sex changers for pretty much every species of connection.
No gender changers, though."

Thank you for that. Ruth Bader Ginsburg claims that she initiated the misuse of "gender" because she did not like to use the proper word, which is "sex". Words have gender. People have sex.

http://articles.latimes.com/1993-11-21/news/mn-59217_1_supreme-court

It may be that the misuse actually arose in the fever swamps of Womyn's Studies, but in any case, I think we can be fairly confident that the ill-educated wretch responsible for this solecism was female. And I see no reason to perpetuate the pointless error.

chickelit said...

Althouse asked: 'decided to become' — Is that politically correct?

I don't know about politically correct but it often is literally true:

...from Latin decidere "to decide, determine," literally "to cut off," from de- "off" (see de-) + caedere "to cut" (see -cide).

eric said...

I have a friend of 30 years (He is in his 50's now) who is transitioning.

Honestly, I don't get it. And I've told him so. He changed his name from a male name to a female name. Does this make him a woman? He now paints his nails, puts on stereotypical female clothes, and is getting voice lessons because his voice is so deep.

Does this make him female? He posts a lot now on Facebook about how wonderful it is to finally be his true self. Being your true self means taking hormones, wearing different clothes, having your nails painted and being called by a woman's name?

He voted for Trump and is a lifelong member of the NRA. He now jokes that he is a lesbian member of the NRA. Oh yeah, that's right, he is still into girls.

Seriously, I don't get it.

John Nowak said...

>Freder Fredersen

>But his point is incoherent. Is he trying to say that if there is a backlash against hedonism that leads to a right wing fascist government, it is the fault of the liberals.

"Freder Fredersen" is a fictional character from Metropolis. The author eventually compared him to Adolph Hitler.

Using it proves your appeal to themes expounded by actual Nazis.

Michael K said...

It is difficult to believe that the Conquest of Europe is being carried out by a dying ideology.

He has also suggested that Hitler was panicked by the idea that the Aryan race was dying off or being diluted. His invasion went pretty well for a while.

His numbers on birth rates are not his alone.

Lewis Wetzel said...

eric wrote:
Does this make him female? He posts a lot now on Facebook about how wonderful it is to finally be his true self. Being your true self means taking hormones, wearing different clothes, having your nails painted and being called by a woman's name?

The other day I read a piece that said that the idea of transgenderism is ridiculous because no man knows what it is like to be woman, and even moreso no woman knows what it means to be a man. How can you know that you are a woman born in a man's body when you have only the vaguest idea what it means to be a woman, but a very good idea what it means to be a man? No woman has ever thought "my penis is erect! This is inconvenient in this context! I hope that no one notices!"

Gretchen said...

Eric,

There are a tiny percentage of people born with indeterminate sex, sometimes chromosomal, sometimes overtly intersex, for those rare people it must be very difficult to determine the correct course of action, and the choices are not easy ones.

That said, transgenderism seems like a form of body dysmorphia, which leads to unhappiness. The left refuses to question this, and is as they always do when they think they are "helping" and being compassionate, they are destroying a lot of lives and causing a lot of pain for unhappy people who think they found some magical answer, when in fact they have mental health issues. Certainly there are people who transition and live happy lives, but, it seems like there are suddenly lots of people doing this, it's a fad. If it isn't questioned, it's likely many people will get on a path that will never be happy, especially young teens or children who are being allowed by parents, under pressure by the left, to transition surgically or hormonally. If your friend decided he was a chicken and wanted to live in a coop and have feathers surgically implanted, no one would play along.

Static Ping said...

The "decided to become" may be politically incorrect. It may not. Who knows. It may be dependent on who you tick off.

This is very similar to the pro arguments over homosexuality. The arguments change from "born this way" to "it's a choice" and back again depending on the speaker, the audience and/or the desired goal.

Or perhaps this is how some non-religious people discuss evolution. They start out with this is science and you would not want to deny science, and then describe the theory as if it was a passage in Genesis.

mockturtle said...

This is very similar to the pro arguments over homosexuality. The arguments change from "born this way" to "it's a choice" and back again depending on the speaker, the audience and/or the desired goal.

I remember when the 'born that way' excuse was held up to scientific scrutiny with mixed, but indecisive results. When it was proposed that, if it were a birth defect, it might be corrected in utero, the gay community howled bloody murder.


Martin said...

God, these self-absorbed twits are dreadfully boring. No wonder the NYT is dying... the bias doesn't help, nor does the changing advertising environment. But maybe the biggest problem is they say nothing interesting that I cannot just get off the news wires.