7 things @ 9 o’clock (10.8)

1. And this, kids, is why you should never hitchhike: “Right-wing truckers’ group backs ‘libtard’-hating police chief.” See, 99 percent of all truck-drivers are probably nice people who will hospitably offer a ride and friendly conversation. But then there’s that other 1 percent …

2. Here’s a right-wing example of a nonpartisan phenomenon. Bring together a bunch of people convinced that they are the purest devotees of the purest truth and eventually they’ll start questioning the purity of one another. Extremists don’t play well with others.

3.The Ghost Rapes of Bolivia.” (TW) This is an appalling, very disturbing story, but a remarkable piece of writing and reporting by Jean Friedman-Rudovsky.

4. Misogynist trolls terrified by confident women aren’t likely to listen to Amanda Marcotte. That’s a shame, because the advice she gives them — “Your Repulsive Personality Is Not Inevitable” — would actually help them to overcome the desperate sense of loneliness and rejection that has them seething with resentment.

As a public service, some bro-friendly site should republish Marcotte’s personal improvement tips under the byline of some “Alpha” male they’ll respect enough to pay attention to. They’ve got nothing to lose but their repulsiveness and their self-inflicted misery.

5. Wife-beaters and other abusers cheer for the GOP government shutdown.

6. Bravo to all involved with #AddaWordRuinaChristianBook. (From the World’s Worst Books, I’d go with these: Soul Train Harvest and The Skid Mark.)

7. Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Mike McIntire, “A Federal Budget Crisis Months in the Planning.”

Shortly after President Obama started his second term, a loose-knit coalition of conservative activists led by former Attorney General Edwin Meese III gathered in the capital to plot strategy. Their push to repeal Mr. Obama’s health care law was going nowhere, and they desperately needed a new plan.

Out of that session, held one morning in a location the members insist on keeping secret, came a little-noticed “blueprint to defunding Obamacare,” signed by Mr. Meese and leaders of more than three dozen conservative groups.

It articulated a take-no-prisoners legislative strategy that had long percolated in conservative circles: that Republicans could derail the health care overhaul if conservative lawmakers were willing to push fellow Republicans — including their cautious leaders — into cutting off financing for the entire federal government.

… To many Americans, the shutdown came out of nowhere. But interviews with a wide array of conservatives show that the confrontation that precipitated the crisis was the outgrowth of a long-running effort to undo the law, the Affordable Care Act, since its passage in 2010 — waged by a galaxy of conservative groups with more money, organized tactics and interconnections than is commonly known.

The article includes a lot of boasting and credit-taking for the long-term planning and execution of this strategy — a strategy that depends, in part, on the ability to pretend there was no long-term planning and strategizing involved, nor credit to be taken, because this was all the other guy’s fault. So on the one hand, the current GOP talking point is that they didn’t want a shutdown and that it’s all Obama’s fault that it’s come to this despite their best efforts, and on the other hand you’ve got Republican strategists, consultants and advocacy groups shouldering each other out of the way so they can brag about their role in orchestrating this to a couple of reporters from The New York Times.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    2. Here’s a right-wing example of a nonpartisan
    phenomenon. Bring together a bunch of people convinced that they are the
    purest devotees of the purest truth and eventually they’ll start questioning the purity of one another. Extremists don’t play well with others.

    That’s definitely interesting, since the issue at hand appears to be who’s responsible for the torts and offences alleged between different people in the same company. Apparently dogmatism knows no bounds. (o.O)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Aside: Ice growing in Antarctica was confusing people until recently.

    The cause? Stronger winds.

    Now the article says they don’t know why the winds are stronger, but my back of the envelope explanation is straight from the global warming recipe:

    Increase the temperature difference between different parts of the globe, which, due to the axial tilt of the Earth and its rotation, is possible.

    At that point, the atmosphere, which is like a giant convective heat engine whose behavior essentially depends only on the temperature difference, will respond to do what thermodynamics says it will do: equalize the extremes of temperature.

    So the convection currents get stronger and you get more powerful winds.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    7. Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Mike McIntire, “A Federal Budget Crisis Months in the Planning.”

    And people pooh-poohed Hillary when she said there was a vast right-wing conspiracy.

  • http://flickr.com/photos/sedary_raymaker/ Naked Bunny with a Whip

    Unfortunately, the conspiracy doesn’t have to be particularly vast. A tiny cabal of well-connected extremists is sufficient.

  • fraser

    I dunno about number two.You can see similar disputes erupt in perfectly secular businesses any day.

  • Oswald Carnes

    Fred didn’t say it was a christian example; he said it was a right-wing example.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I think the point he was making is that self-righteousness can be found in a lot of places.

  • Jim Roberts

    It’s pretty explicit – he refers to it as a “nonpartisan phenomenon.”

  • DCFem

    I read #3 when it was first published and I was amazed that cults can still shock me with their sexual violence. That is the organizing principle of these so called religions — their ability to isolate and commit the grossest acts of violence against their followers.

    #4 — When are we going to start seeing Amanda on television? She’s approaching John Stewart levels of snarkiness and it’s hysterical.

  • Lori

    That is the organizing principle of these so called religions — their ability to isolate and commit the grossest acts of violence against
    their followers.

    I recently finally got around to reading Julia Sheer’s book about Jonestown, A Thousand Lives and it broke my heart for exactly this reason. I knew some things about Jonestown, but there was so much more, and so much worse than I had heard. Most of the members were decent people pursuing laudable goals, but for Jones and his inner circle the entire enterprise was about isolating them so that they could be taken advantage of in the worst ways.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino
  • smrnda

    It depends. When we talk about software at work, we care about what works and our respective ‘philosophies’ about software design don’t matter. I suspect an issue with ideological purity is that public policy should be about getting results; once you prize ideology over that, a person is more or less lost to reason since they care about ideological purity and not results.

  • dpolicar

    This is a complete tangent, for which I apologize, but this “results”/”ideology” dichotomy is really really problematic for me.

    It’s not that I disagree with you… I don’t, strictly speaking.

    But IME “prizing results over ideology” is also often how people describe sacrificing long-term results in pursuit of short-term results, often with disastrous long-term consequences.

    More generally, those who pursue short-term results are often fond of describing themselves as “results-oriented” and equally fond of painting the pursuit of long-term results as impractical, ideological, philosophical, academic, etc.

    They are also often fond of finding another job before the bill for their short-sighted decisions comes due, leaving others to clean up their mess.

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    1. And this, kids, is why you should never hitchhike: “Right-wing truckers’ group backs ‘libtard’-hating police chief.” See, 99 percent of all truck-drivers are probably nice people who will hospitably offer a ride and friendly conversation. But then there’s that other 1 percent …
    -
    Is this connected with that trucker’s group that got in the news this morning “to shut down Washington” by blocking the Beltway and freeways in DC? Letting through only those with the proper (their) bumper stickers? Some were even reported as calling upon the military to “arrest all Congress”.
    -
    2. Here’s a right-wing example of a nonpartisan phenomenon. Bring together a bunch of people convinced that they are the purest devotees of the purest truth and eventually they’ll start questioning the purity of one another. Extremists don’t play well with others.
    -
    1) “The Universe cannot have two centers.”
    -
    2) “What do predators eat after they’ve killed off all the prey?”

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

    I wonder if this is an application of the original Gaia Hypothesis. Shorn of the Shirley Mac Laine accretions, the Gaia Hypothesis stated that Earth’s ecosystem is self-regulating, with the biosphere playing a major role in that self-regulation. Globe warms, convention currents get stronger, winds increase, ice grows in Antarctica. Ice melts here, some of it transfers to there.

  • TheBrett

    3. That reminds me of the hard-core polygamist towns in southern Utah/northern Arizona. You’d get the same type of stories: incest, rape that went undisclosed and unprosecuted, and other forms of sexual abuse.

    It was for the same reasons as the Mennonite sexual abuse, I’d venture. When you have

    1. A close-knit community that is completely defensive to outsiders and whose highest priority is community preservation;

    2. A patriarchal system in which women have little to no power (the article mentions that women don’t even have legal standing in Mennonite communities);

    3. A society where discussion of any sexual topics is absolutely taboo;

    4. The weight of any real or perceived sexual “transgressions” falls on women;

    you have a place where sexual predators thrive for years on end.

  • smrnda

    True, our differences in wording might have to do with who we end up arguing with more often. I tend to get into discussions with people who simply reject *any* results-oriented view of public policy – polices are good, even when the results are bad.

    I mean, there are no results that the current crop of right-wingers can point to, short term or otherwise. When they talk about their ideas ‘working’ they simply redefine how ‘working’ is measured – health care *works* as long as the government isn’t involved in it, regardless of health care access or health outcomes – it’s simply redefining ‘good’ and ‘bad’ to fit the ideology.

    I’d say that people just need to be honest as to whether they’re looking for short or long term results. I got into a discussion with a guy on health care who argued that in the absence of government intervention, the market would *eventually* work something out. Great, I need my medication tomorrow, *eventually* is too far away.

  • Guest

    #4 I was with the article until the self-care suggestions, and then it just stopped sitting well with me. The solution to holding women to impossible standards of beauty is to stop holding them to those standards, not to hold men to those standards. And telling misogynic dudebros to watch their appearance is not going to change them from being misogynic dudebros in any way. And it seems like there are elements of fat-shaming (hit the gym to lose weight and look better) and poor-shaming (have art on the walls!) in there.

  • MarkTemporis

    I have the article cued up but haven’t read it, but those last two aren’t too bad. You really don’t need to be all that rich to own art — I don’t expect Amanda to call for originals; your local museum probably has nice posters for about five bucks. Not to poor-shame, but really if your leisure spending doesn’t allow five bucks you might consider not dating for awhile — it does cost money; not necessarily a lot, but some. Growing up I owned a nice poster of Michaelangelo’s “Creation of Man” and some lovely H.R. Giger posters.

    I am a lazy fatass, and I don’t hit the gym nearly enough, but the suggestion to get some physical activity isn’t completely just fat-shaming. I don’t go to the gym specifically to lose weight; I go to the gym because right now, I’m completely winded walking two blocks to the store and if for some reason I am on the ground have a hell of a time getting back up. This has much less to do with what women think of me as it does my capacity to continue living.

  • MarkTemporis

    Regarding (3); an aerosol anesthetic spray that is undetectable and capable of neutralizing an entire family sounds like something military/law enforcement types everywhere would pay top dollar for. That a veteranarian with minimal access to modern equipment could develop something like that is highly doubtful.

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    I keep on imagining one side or the other insisting that there will be no peace so long as Kirk lives.

  • Evan

    Remember in the article that one woman said she’d “heard a hissing sound” and “smelled a strange odor” before going to bed. So it is detectable – it’s just that these Mennonite women didn’t recognize it. And bearing in mind their strict division of labor along gender lines, that doesn’t surprise me at all.

  • Trixie_Belden

    Also, it sounds like no one was doing any blood tests to see if they could determine what the victims had been exposed to. It’s probably something that’s already out there, it’s just that no one tried to identify it.

  • Lorehead

    Sounds like a wise move. Keep at it!

  • MarkTemporis

    The bit about reading female writers and listening to female artists is a bit of a Amanda bete noire. I don’t doubt she actually knows men who don’t do either, but I’ve never known someone who outright refuses to accept an artist/writer because they’re a woman.

    I have, however, been accused of racism because nearly all the music I listen to is by white artists. I’m a metal and industrial/techno fan, what am I supposed to do?

  • MarkTemporis

    Only thing I can think of is scopolamine which is at least theoretically capable of that, but NASA has apparently been working on aerosolizing it for years now. Good old fashioned chlorophorm is pretty lethal if you don’t know what you’re doing. A vet might have access to some nice depersonalization crap like Special K…
    …and as I go over the litany of possible rape drugs everyone is starting to look at me a little funny so maybe I should stop now.

  • Lorehead

    Well, she says what she’s talking about is not a literal refusal to read any woman, but rather demeaning the work of any women they do read, which is very common.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X