Not representing computer science well


Dumbass wannabe martyr

This is the time of year many of us are working on our syllabi, and one common feature nowadays is a land acknowledgment. For instance, I mention that UMM is on the original homelands of the Dakota, Lakota and Anishinaabe peoples; no big deal, recognizing our history and the identity of the people who have a legitimate claim on these lands. But what would you think of this peculiar acknowledgement by a computer science instructor at the University of Washington?

I acknowledge that by the labor theory of property the Coast Salish people can claim historical ownership of almost none of the land currently occupied by the University of Washington.

Labor theory of property? What does that have to do the brute fact of the reality of UW’s history? Then denying that fact is simply offensive.

The university asked him to take it down. They even offer a recommended alternative.

The University of Washington acknowledges the Coast Salish peoples of this land, the land which touches the shared waters of all tribes and bands within the Suquamish, Tulalip and Muckleshoot nations.

It’s very silly to oppose a straightforward statement of fact like that, and offensive to post a denial. But Stuart Reges sees an opportunity to leap on the right-wing gravy train.

“University administrators turned me into a pariah on campus because I included a land acknowledgment that wasn’t sufficiently progressive for them,” said Reges in a press release issued Wednesday by FIRE, a nonprofit that supports free speech on campuses and elsewhere. “Land acknowledgments are performative acts of conformity that should be resisted, even if it lands you in court,” added Reges.

That’s it. The university asked an employee to refrain from offending students, which is entirely reasonable — academic freedom does not mean you can posture abusively and not be criticized. He has a job to do, and a meaningless but unproductive statement does interfere with that.

Of course, he is now suing the university, claiming his civil rights have been violated, which is why he’s partnering up with FIRE. Nothing has happened to him, except that his own actions have generated some adverse publicity; the university has not taken any material action against him. He’s not tenured, so the university is free to not renew his contract. I don’t understand what grounds he has for any kind of lawsuit. He’s just trying desperately to become yet another right-wing martyr, but the university hasn’t bothered to nail him up on any cross.

Of course, now he’s stuck his head up and made it obvious to the administration how stupid he is. He may have effectively screwed himself.

He’s tried this before. Would you believe he he published an article on Quillette, Why Women Don’t Code, in which he says I believe that women are less likely than men to want to major in computer science and less likely to pursue a career as a software engineer and that this difference between men and women accounts for most of the gender gap, and also tried to hoist himself on that cross again:

Saying controversial things that might get me fired is nothing new for me. I’ve been doing it most of my adult life and usually my comments have generated a big yawn. I experienced a notable exception in a 1991 case that received national attention, when I was fired from Stanford University for “violating campus drug policy” as a means of challenging the assumptions of the war on drugs. My attitude in all of these cases has been that I need to speak up and give my honest opinion on controversial issues. Most often nothing comes of it, but if I can be punished for expressing such ideas, then it is even more important to speak up and try to make the injustice plain.

Try and try and try again to provoke your employers so you can land that juicy lawsuit that will please the regressives who hate universities, and fail and fail and fail. That Quillette article did have the effect of getting his three-year contract getting demoted to a one year probationary contract. “Contract”. “Probationary”. That he has been straining to violate the terms of a probationary agreement for years seems to me to provide adequate grounds for letting him go while cancelling out any reason to sue his employers.

Comments

  1. numerobis says

    I believe the gap in the number of women v men in software jobs is due to the gap in the number of women v men in software jobs?

    A+ for logic there.

    I mean everyone knows that women choose lower-paying jobs like female software engineer and female CEO, rather than high-paying jobs like software engineer or CEO.

  2. says

    “Nothing has ever happened to me for speaking out but I believe it could and I am outraged and must bring light to these injustices I have never been a victim of!”

  3. raven says

    He just comes across as a jerk who gets off on offending people.
    You can bet the university is just waiting and looking for a way to get rid of him before he causes more problems.
    You can also bet that his career at the University of Washington is going nowhere.
    You can also bet no reputable university will hire him if he quits or gets fired. Why would they when he is a walking lawsuit looking for a university to sue.

    Longtime PSU instructor quits, citing harassment, lack of free … https://www.opb.org › article › 2021/09/09 › longtime-…

    Sep 9, 2021 — In his resignation letter, Peter Boghossian – known for his ‘hoax’ articles – says Portland State has turned into a ‘Social Justice factory’.

    Portland State finally managed to get rid of Peter Boghossian. He didn’t contribute much to the university but did cause them a huge number of problems.

    U. of Toronto finally managed to get rid of Jordan Peterson.
    Peterson was an easy one. He clearly violated so many rules, regulations, and policies that even with tenure, he could have been fired for cause.

  4. PaulBC says

    I had to look up “Labor Theory of Property”, which I see is Locke’s claim that ownership of previously unowned resources comes about by the exertion of labor. Can Reges even document his statement in Lockean terms?

    The fake justification I usually hear for the theft of Native American lands is that the “improvement” resulted in greater productivity from the same land (e.g. more food output by farming the Great Plains than by hunting bison). Nobody said the original inhabitants weren’t working hard.

    My hunch is that the Salish people had extensive fisheries, knew the details of every square foot of gathering lands, and generally worked their butts off making this land productive in the manner they knew. I know a little more about the Ohlone who lived in the SF Bay Area. For instance, they subsisted on abundant but hard to process acorn flour and exerted an enormous amount of labor removing the tannins from these barely digestible tree nuts. No economic argument denies the amount of labor they put into working the land we stole from them.

    And of course it’s nonsense, because the de facto “theory” of property is formal, not natural. You “own” the property because an established government assigns a deed to you that they are prepared to enforce. I don’t get to acquire Bill Gates’s estate if he fails to mow the lawn and I think it would make a nice apple orchard that I would work hard to cultivate. The Native Americans lost their land not through any lack of effort but because a culture with more powerful weapons was able to seize it by force and lay claim to it.

    Reges’s statement is not only idiotic but disgustingly disingenuous.

  5. PaulBC says

    I know Wikipedia is not an authoritative source, but here’s a little about Coast Salish salmon fishing. It sounds like an awful lot of labor to me, much more than I do when I buy a package of smoked salmon from Costco.

    I would not be able to feed myself if I were dropped into the primeval lands and coast that the Salish people first encountered. Would Reges?

  6. says

    As someone who grew up on Coast Salish lands, and who was active in fishing in my youth, I can tell you that the effect of non-Native populations moving into the area was the degradation and destruction of local salmon populations. Is that the negative labor theory of property? By destroying the resource, you lose your right to ownership?

  7. consciousness razor says

    PaulBC:

    I had to look up “Labor Theory of Property”, which I see is Locke’s claim that ownership of previously unowned resources comes about by the exertion of labor. Can Reges even document his statement in Lockean terms?

    He could. But how could that possibly help?

    The fake justification I usually hear for the theft of Native American lands is that the “improvement” resulted in greater productivity from the same land (e.g. more food output by farming the Great Plains than by hunting bison).

    Uh … I think you’re confused somehow. That is the basic idea. This isn’t something different.

    Obviously, nobody’s labor literally produced that land, and it wasn’t literally unoccupied or unused. (“Unowned” is a more complicated question, and concepts of ownership vary quite a lot.)

    You’re supposed to just forget these sorts of things and pretend that we’re talking about “improvement” or some such. And no matter what non-Europeans were doing (anywhere), it’s never supposed to count as satisfactory to the Europeans who get to decide while nobody else does.

    Nobody said the original inhabitants weren’t working hard.

    “Nobody”? I mean, I don’t exactly recommend that you read from a bunch of old racists (or modern ones), but that’s the sort of thing you’d need to do to see just how wrong this is.

  8. says

    You wouldn’t survive now, but before the salmon were depleted you would found it relatively easy to survive in certain seasons. The trick is about being clever enough to preserve and store the surplus. The Coast Salish were experts at working smart.

  9. Reginald Selkirk says

    What would he sure the universty for? Probably for “viewpoint discrimination“, which is certainly not mentioned in the constitution.

  10. mordred says

    Just one of the usual right wing tech-bros that make IT forums such a joy…

    Except that this one had an academic career. I hope “had” is the correct tense here.

  11. PaulBC says

    cr@7

    “Nobody”? I mean, I don’t exactly recommend that you read from a bunch of old racists (or modern ones), but that’s the sort of thing you’d need to do to see just how wrong this is.

    How about: There is no support for the claim that indigenous people do not engage in “the exertion of labor upon natural resources” to obtain their sustenance. The fish aren’t jumping into their laps. In the case of Ohlone, the acorns aren’t pounding themselves into edible flour.

    Yes, there are plenty of racists who believe there are “lazy natives” living in paradise, so my statement is incorrect (can I amend it to “Nobody but ignorant bigots”?). Also, there is some question about the relative benefit of agriculture vs. gathering. Still, it is very clear to me that the Ohlone people worked harder than I do on their stolen land that I “bought” according to the only principle of ownership that holds in practice.

    I may be confused, but reading over the Wikipedia page on Locke’s principle, he seems to attach significance to the mingling of labor with land rather than its ultimate economic value. Adam Smith was more concerned with the resulting improvement in productivity, whether through land improvement or process improvement (sorry, I did read about this a while ago but I can’t quote anything very relevant).

    This is subtly different from what Locke meant. Reges uses a specific term from political philosophy. Whatever he intends it to mean (and I believe you’re correct) I do not think that is what it actually means. Unless you believe that the Salish were a shiftless people with salmon jumping into their laps, then you cannot really use the “labor theory of property” to claim they do not own their land in a Lockean sense. If there is something like an “improvement theory of property” that might apply.

  12. pilgham says

    I spent 40 years in software, and men write code. Women then fix that code so it actually works. Men then break it. I could go on.

  13. PaulBC says

    pilgham@12 I have spent a fair amount of time over the years fixing bugs in other people’s code, so I don’t accept your generalization. It does mesh with one observation that need not be gender-related: “You get more credit for creating a big mess than you do for cleaning up someone else’s mess.” The most successful high-flying tech people time it to get out of Dodge before anyone recognizes that their prototype is going to take a lot of work before it’s a product.

    Women are underrepresented among software engineers, but I’ve worked with many who are excellent at it.

  14. consciousness razor says

    Unless you believe that the Salish were a shiftless people with salmon jumping into their laps, then you cannot really use the “labor theory of property” to claim they do not own their land in a Lockean sense. If there is something like an “improvement theory of property” that might apply.

    It has nothing to do with what I believe, and I don’t know where you’re getting your ideas about what Locke thought or meant.

    Locke:

    32. But the chief matter of Property being now not the Fruits of the Earth, and the Beasts that subsist on it, but the Earth it self; as that which takes in and carries with it all the rest: I think it is plain, that Property in that too is acquired as the former. As much Land as a Man Tills, Plants, Improves, Cultivates, and can use the Product of, so much is his Property. He by his Labour does, as it were, inclose it from the Common. Nor will it invalidate his right to say, Every body else has an equal Title to it; and therefore he cannot appropriate, he cannot inclose, without the Consent of all his Fellow-Commoners, all Mankind. God, when he gave the World in common to all Mankind, commanded Man also to labour, and the penury of his Condition required it of him. God and his Reason commanded him to subdue the Earth, i.e. improve it for the benefit of Life, and therein lay out something upon it that was his own, his labour. He that in Obedience to this Command of God, subdued, tilled and sowed any part of it, thereby annexed to it something that was his Property, which another had no Title to, nor could without injury take from him.

    33. Nor was this appropriation of any parcel of Land, by improving it, any prejudice to any other Man, since there was still enough, and as good left; and more than the yet unprovided could use. So that in effect, there was never the less left for others because of his inclosure for himself. For he that leaves as much as another can make use of, does as good as take nothing at all. No Body could think himself injur’d by the drinking of another Man, though he took a good Draught, who had a whole River of the same Water left him to quench his thirst. And the Case of Land and Water, where there is enough of both, is perfectly the same.

    34. God gave the World to Men in Common; but since he gave it them for their benefit, and the greatest Conveniencies of Life they were capable to draw from it, it cannot be supposed he meant it should always remain common and uncultivated. He gave it to the use of the Industrious and Rational, (and Labour was to be his Title to it;) not to the Fancy or Covetousness of the Quarrelsom and Contentious. He that had as good left for his Improvement, as was already taken up, needed not complain, ought not to meddle with what was already improved by another’s Labour: If he did, ’tis plain he desired the benefit of another’s Pains, which he had no right to, and not the Ground which God had given him in common with others to labour on, and whereof there was as good left, as that already possessed, and more than he knew what to do with, or his Industry could reach to.

  15. PaulBC says

    cr@14 I’m getting it from Wikipedia, which is a weak basis I admit. The section on “criticism” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labor_theory_of_property#Criticism touches on my impression compared to what Locke meant.

    Economist John Quiggin argues that this fits into a larger fundamental criticism of Locke’s labor theory of property which values a particular type of labor and land use (i.e. agriculture) over all others. It thus does not recognize usage of land, for example, by hunter-gatherer societies as granting rights to ownership.

    This is in effect, the criticism that came to my mind. It is certainly an odd use of the word “labor” to me that distinguishes one form of difficult work from another, particularly when both are directed at identical goals: sustenance.

    It is unsurprising that Locke would have himself valued European land use over indigenous land use. So, fine. You win. To paraphrase Reges, by a “theory of property which values a particular type of labor and land use (i.e. agriculture) over all others” the Salish had no legitimate ownership of their historical lands. Is that that the hill he wants to die on?

    I was “confused” as you say because I read the word “labor” according to its conventional meaning.

  16. PaulBC says

    Also, in reality, a fence around land, a property deed, etc. are all actual grounds for establishing “ownership” provided there is a body to enforce this claim (effectively “might makes right.”) Locke is basically full of it, and I was never confused on that point. I have noticed that the arguments used to justify the theft of land from indigenous people magically disappeared once the land is in the hands of indolent and entitled people.

  17. says

    So, using the the labor theory of property, can I go mow Reges’ lawn and then claim his home as my property. Using his pretzel logic, he should be willing to deed his land over to me!

  18. PaulBC says

    It is also hard for me to see how Locke would have made a distinction between less productive farming methods that cultivated the same amount of land and drew the same amount of human effort but resulted in much smaller crops than modern farming methods. (Serious question for cr: Is there a distinction that can be supported in Locke’s writing?)

    Yet it remains the case that many Americans (historically not only white nationalists) attempt to justify the theft of indigenous lands based on superior productivity rather than the extent and effort required to cultivate it. Would Reges agree that an agricultural population (e.g. some branch of Iroquois) had a legitimate claim to their land?

    The conventional informal interpretation used to justify the theft is that the land “feeds more people” (and this may apply to “improvements” such as fish processing plants, not only agriculture). Again, this distinction vanishes entirely if I imagine I am going to cultivate a few acres on land owned but unused by some wealthy person or corporation. Reges (whatever his basis in Lockean principle) is relying on a disgustingly hypocritical argument.

  19. says

    So, talking about the labor theory of property and improvement to land as a basis of claim our take is ~3.5 min.
    http://omnigma.org/heroicheretic/alienreport.mp4 freely view and share

    Also, there is talk about reparations for the ‘white man’s’ theft of Native American lands (as well as the slavery issue with Black americans). It is scary to think about because most of us would lose our homes if it were literally and completely applied. But, the u.s. gov’t is responsible for the theft of so much land and the slaughter of Native Americans.

  20. birgerjohansson says

    There are plenty of very expensive houses in London that remain empty and are falling apart, as the property was bought for real estate speculation.
    So we can just break the locks, move in and declare ourselves the legitimate owners using Locke’s argument as excuse.

  21. consciousness razor says

    PaulBC:

    I’m getting it from Wikipedia, which is a weak basis I admit.

    Right, I got that, but I looked at that article and didn’t know which part you were trying to interpret.

    This is in effect, the criticism that came to my mind. It is certainly an odd use of the word “labor” to me that distinguishes one form of difficult work from another, particularly when both are directed at identical goals: sustenance.

    Sure. He’s talking about tilling, planting, cultivating – the ways which happened to come to mind to him at the time of writing, that “industrious and rational” people (that he knew about) improve land that they claim to own.

    If your labor doesn’t satisfy those criteria that he explicitly mentioned, then it doesn’t. And if that were your entire justification for claiming land already used/inhabited by Native Americans, then there you have it. You can say this is all very stupid and awful, but you can’t say that that’s not the theory. (I think we’re in agreement about that now.)

    He of course wasn’t an expert on many other cultures around the world, how things worked throughout actual history (rather than his idealized fantasy version of it), or how/when/if others think about property. He does address things like hunting and fishing:

    30. Thus this Law of reason makes the Deer, that Indian’s who hath killed it; ’tis allowed to be his goods who hath bestowed his labour upon it, though before, it was the common right of every one. And amongst those who are counted the Civiliz’d part of Mankind, who have made and multiplied positive Laws to determine Property, this original Law of Nature for the beginning of Property, in what was before common, still takes place; and by vertue thereof, what Fish any one catches in the Ocean, that great and still remaining Common of Mankind; or what Ambergriese any one takes up here, is by the Labour that removes it out of that common state Nature left it in, made his Property who takes that pains about it. And even amongst us the Hare that any one is Hunting, is thought his who pursues her during the Chase. For being a Beast that is still looked upon as common, and no Man’s private Possession; whoever has imploy’d so much labour about any of that kind, as to find and pursue her, has thereby removed her from the state of Nature, wherein she was common, and hath begun a Property.

    In other words, you get to claim the deer if you hunted it, because that is of course labor. But the deer is not the land. (Obviously, and he considers these issues separately, so he can have a nice overly complicated theory full of ideas which are dubious at best.) So, working to maintain hunting grounds (for example) just doesn’t officially count, even if that makes hardly any sense to anyone.

    In the other passage I quoted, he says we’re in penury prior to “improvement.” But at the same time, there is an overabundance of land, because God’s just such a nice guy. Therefore, nobody ever has a right to complain when a person Improves™ (and thus Owns™) any such parcel and prevents the rest of humanity from owning it. “Just go somewhere else,” or in more modern libertarian-speak, “I’ve got mine, fuck you.”

  22. PaulBC says

    birgerjohansson@20 Applying Zaphod Beeblebrox’s principle:

    “Property is theft, therefore theft is property, therefore this [house] is mine.”

  23. consciousness razor says

    It is also hard for me to see how Locke would have made a distinction between less productive farming methods that cultivated the same amount of land and drew the same amount of human effort but resulted in much smaller crops than modern farming methods. (Serious question for cr: Is there a distinction that can be supported in Locke’s writing?)

    I’m not an expert at all…. I guess he would be partial to “more productive” methods, but there’s not really a sharp dividing line or anything. He does say that you only claim as much you can actually till/cultivate/etc. — not like the US did in the real world, obviously. The rest of his argument is such a mess that I guess it doesn’t really matter how any of that’s supposed to work in practice.

  24. says

    Are we about to see a new Oklahoma Land Rush? Maybe we could all pile into jeeps and go out and slaughter cattle instead of Bison!? (I know these statements probably would be taken as a ‘great new idea’ to be put into practice by a bunch of red-neck waspy tRUMPites)

    Help! I want to escape from this ever more insane society!

  25. PaulBC says

    OK, I retract my first statement. I suppose Reges could justify his statement in Lockean terms. Locke’s theory of land ownership is effectively back-fitted to justify British colonialism in his historical context. I thought there was more intellectual consistency to it.

  26. consciousness razor says

    Maybe the strangest part is that this Reges dude is likely to flip out if you accused him of being a liberal, despite being a Locke fanboy.

  27. unclefrogy says

    I have noticed that the arguments used to justify the theft of land from indigenous people magically disappeared once the land is in the hands of indolent and entitled people.

    funny how that is.
    the other thing that should be noted is the underlying justification for his idea is christian theology as indicated by the reference to god and his biblical directives.
    it just sounds like fancy justification for the status quo of the time really

  28. says

    Locke’s “theory” has even less validity than the AiG “theory” that we can see galaxies more than 13 million lightyears away in a 6000 year old universe because of a miracle, which at least is an empirical claim rather than a self-serving rule. Debating it is one of the dumbest things I’ve ever seen here, although it is surpassed by

    “I spent 40 years in software, and men write code. Women then fix that code so it actually works. Men then break it. I could go on.”

    Yes, no doubt there are numerous other idiotic things you can say. You aren’t doing feminism any favors with such nonsense, which manages to stupidly imply that women are only maintenance programmers and don’t do original work–apparently Grace Hopper and numerous other women who write code don’t exist. Anyone with actual experience in software development (I have nearly 60 years myself) knows that bugs are inherent to the process , that fixing code requires writing code, and the fixes often need to be fixed … and men and women collaborate in the process. And there’s a whole lot of sexual discrimination, hostile work environments, etc. that is the real shape of things, not your foolish nonsense.

  29. says

    Somehow it seems worth pointing out that “the Coast Salish people (sic)” do not “claim historical ownership of …the land currently occupied by the University of Washington”.

  30. birgerjohansson says

    Women don’t code?
    I wanted to make a joke about the Borg queen turning Stuart Reges into a drone, but he is too dull and unoriginal to make fun of.

  31. PaulBC says

    Jim Balter@28

    Debating [Locke’s theory of land property] is one of the dumbest things I’ve ever seen here,

    Well, it is on topic and I don’t think anyone was arguing for its validity. I would not have known that “labor theory of property” referred to an explicit preference for agriculture over other land use (none of which leave the land in a pristine state). It is non-obvious and not conveyed at all by the term. Anyway, now I know.

  32. says

    I’m sad. Stuart was one of the good guys back in 1991 when I was a Stanford student. The Federal drug policies that constrain schools receiving grants are horrific and remain on the books. There probably was an element of grandstanding to what he did back then, but somebody needed to do it.

    His latest antics, . . . I’m just all WTF at how he got himself down this rabbit hole.

  33. Nemo says

    consciousness razor@26

    Maybe the strangest part is that this Reges dude is likely to flip out if you accused him of being a liberal, despite being a Locke fanboy.

    Actually I’d bet that he calls himself a “classical liberal” (libertarian). Note the stuff about violating campus drug policy.

  34. Owlmirror says

    To the best of my knowledge, most of the University of Washington is not farmland or used for farming.

    The College of the Environment does have centers for forestry and fishing, and those might fall under the umbrella of “labor” as intended by Locke.

    I am 100% certain that the college of computer science does not.

    (Heavy uuuugh. I see that they’ve named the place specifically the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering )

    To paraphrase noted labor theorists Dire Straits:

    Now look at them nerdheads, that’s the way you do it
    You hit the keyboard and you code in C
    That ain’t workin’
    That’s the way you do it
    Money for nothin’ and bugchecks for free

  35. consciousness razor says

    Actually I’d bet that he calls himself a “classical liberal” (libertarian). Note the stuff about violating campus drug policy.

    Libertarian, certainly. And some definitely are a bit more like our regular, Gerard…. They’re at least sort of okay with classical liberal, as he used to be, even if they might not normally use it.

    Still, I bet most don’t really know or care about any of that, and the hatred of liberals (read: present-day Democrats) is very strong with their kind. They actually have quite a bit in common if you scratch the surface, but the typical middle-of-the-road conservative Dems do support the war on drugs (e.g.) at least at some level, because they like the government being in your face all the time — exactly the people who make that type of libertarian’s skin crawl.

  36. silvrhalide says

    @6 Well the salmon population was in decline but fell off a cliff thanks to that sellout bitch Gale Norton (Dubya’s Secretary of the Interior) completely fucked up mismanagement of the Klamath River Basin. The salmon stocks are still feeling the ripple effects today, 20 years later.
    https://www.indianz.com/News/show.asp?ID=2002/09/30/klamath

    This is the same Gale Norton who overrode Christine Todd Whitman’s concerns about asbestos and other hazardous/toxic chemicals from the 9/11 attacks on the WTC and declared that there was no hazard, so protective equipment was not given to emergency services (fire, police, EMTs, etc.) during the cleanup and remediation, which in turn gave us 9/11 syndrome.
    https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/health-effects-of-9-11-still-plague-responders-and-survivors/

    Also the same Gale Norton who was caught in a Native American casino bribery scandal with Jack Abramoff.

  37. silvrhalide says

    @6 Well the salmon population was in decline but fell off a cliff thanks to that sellout Gale Norton (Dubya’s Secretary of the Interior) completely fucked up mismanagement of the Klamath River Basin. The salmon stocks are still feeling the ripple effects today, 20 years later.
    https://www.indianz.com/News/show.asp?ID=2002/09/30/klamath
    http://www.klamathforestalliance.org/Archives/newsarchives010501.html

    This is the same Gale Norton who overrode Christine Todd Whitman’s concerns about asbestos and other hazardous/toxic chemicals from the 9/11 attacks on the WTC and declared that there was no hazard, so protective equipment was not given to emergency services (fire, police, EMTs, etc.) during the cleanup and remediation, which in turn gave us 9/11 syndrome.
    https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/health-effects-of-9-11-still-plague-responders-and-survivors/

    Also the same Gale Norton who was caught in a Native American casino bribery scandal with Jack Abramoff.

  38. says

    “It is non-obvious and not conveyed at all by the term. Anyway, now I know.”

    But who the fuck cares, and why? It’s like learning the exact dimensions of the ovens at Treblinka. Locke is a long dead white guy who contributed some good ideas to the Enlightenment but this wasn’t one of them: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labor_theory_of_property#Criticism

    “Economist John Quiggin argues that this fits into a larger fundamental criticism of Locke’s labor theory of property which values a particular type of labor and land use (i.e. agriculture) over all others. It thus does not recognize usage of land, for example, by hunter-gatherer societies as granting rights to ownership. In essence, the Lockean proviso depends on “the existence of a frontier, beyond which lies boundless usable land. This in turn requires the erasure (mentally and usually in brutal reality) of the people already living beyond the frontier and drawing their sustenance from the land in question.” Locke’s theories of property rights are often interpreted in the context of his support for chattel slavery of “prisoners captured in war” as a philosophical justification for the enslavement of Black Africans and expulsion or killing of Native Americans by early American colonists to gain their land.[15]”

    It’s only of value to scum like Reges.

  39. says

    “Stuart was one of the good guys back in 1991 when I was a Stanford student.”

    Somehow I doubt that you knew his views on indigenous people and land ownership issues.

  40. says

    Here’s another woman who, according to Stuart Reges didn’t write code and, according to pilgham, only fixed code written by men: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frances_Allen

    Frances Elizabeth Allen (August 4, 1932 – August 4, 2020)[2] was an American computer scientist and pioneer in the field of optimizing compilers.[3][4][5] Allen was the first woman to become an IBM Fellow and in 2006 became the first woman to win the Turing Award.[6] Her achievements include seminal work in compilers, program optimization, and parallelization.[7] She worked for IBM from 1957 to 2002 and subsequently was a Fellow Emerita.[8]

    Her A. M. Turing Award citation reads:

    Fran Allen’s work has had an enormous impact on compiler research and practice. Both alone and in joint work with John Cocke [he wrote the code, she just fixed it?], she introduced many of the abstractions, algorithms, and implementations that laid the groundwork for automatic program optimization technology. Allen’s 1966 paper, “Program Optimization,” laid the conceptual basis for systematic analysis and transformation of computer programs. This paper introduced the use of graph-theoretic structures to encode program content in order to automatically and efficiently derive relationships and identify opportunities for optimization. Her 1970 papers, “Control Flow Analysis” and “A Basis for Program Optimization” established “intervals” as the context for efficient and effective data flow analysis and optimization. Her 1971 paper with Cocke, “A Catalog of Optimizing Transformations,” provided the first description and systematization of optimizing transformations. Her 1973 and 1974 papers on interprocedural data flow analysis extended the analysis to whole programs. Her 1976 paper with Cocke describes one of the two main analysis strategies used in optimizing compilers today. Allen developed and implemented her methods as part of compilers for the IBM STRETCH-HARVEST and the experimental Advanced Computing System. This work established the feasibility and structure of modern machine- and language-independent optimizers. She went on to establish and lead the PTRAN project on the automatic parallel execution of FORTRAN programs. Her PTRAN team developed new parallelism detection schemes and created the concept of the program dependence graph, the primary structuring method used by most parallelizing compilers.

  41. Derek Vandivere says

    They’ve only really become a thing since I left the US (’94), but land acknowledgements confuse me a bit. Do they go any further than just saying “Yes, native people X used to live here,” or are they generally tied to some kind of action?

    According to the article, adding a statement was suggested and not mandatory so his holier than thou attitude that “Land acknowledgments are performative acts of conformity that should be resisted, even if it lands you in court,” is pretty bogus, as he could have just not included an acknowledgement statement.

  42. says

    “Labor theory of property” is what PaulBC says it is: a bogus justification for European colonists — being advanced and civilized and full of protestant-work-ethic donchaknow — to steal land from “savages” who are simply assumed to be less productive and hardworking simply because they’re less “advanced” then technocratic (pseudo-)Enlightenment Europeans.

    It is also, I suspect, another instance of libertarians taking a perfectly valid leftist, Marxist or progressive idea — in this case the “labor theory of VALUE” — and twisting it into a funhouse-mirror propaganda-point to serve their own demented agenda. Libertarians have been doing this with liberal and socialist ideas and even images at least since the 1970s. Their adamant reflexive hatred of all things “Communist” has caused them to turn themselves, their ideology and their talking-points into a dark-funhouse-mirror of everything they hate.

  43. says

    I acknowledge that by the labor theory of property the Coast Salish people can claim historical ownership of almost none of the land currently occupied by the University of Washington.

    How much labor is this twit doing on the same land? More than the Cost Salish people did when they were on it? Glass houses, boy…

  44. says

    Actually I’d bet that he calls himself a “classical liberal” (libertarian).

    All libertarians do that. It’s how they pretend to be the sole keepers and interpreters of America’s founding ideology — and thus the sole keepers and owners of America’s historical and ideological identity. America (in their narrative at least) was founded in its entirety by “Classical Liberals,” who are the only REAL liberals, as opposed to all the liberals who came after them, who are actually tyrannical commies and monarchists, even when they’re explicitly fighting against tyrants, commies or monarchists. That includes Tyrant Lincoln and Commie FDR.

  45. says

    I don’t get to acquire Bill Gates’s estate if he fails to mow the lawn and I think it would make a nice apple orchard that I would work hard to cultivate.

    Part of me wishes you’d try — the lawsuit could be hilarious. Because let’s face it — we use eminent domain to take property from poorer people and give it to richer people on the grounds that it would be good for the local economy. So we’re already invoking something very like the “labor theory of property” in our own laws. So let’s see the tables turned on the plutocrats. Let’s force, say, Tesla to prove they’re using their land more productively than, say, a farmer who can grow enough food on the same land to feed a small country, or someone who can reforest the land to counteract global warming. And Twitter? WTF is being produced on any of the land they own or rent? Enquiring minds want to know…

  46. says

    @39
    “Somehow I doubt that you knew his views on indigenous people and land ownership issues.”
    Suffice it to say, this never came up.
    And also, it was 30+ years ago; people’s views on stuff do change over time.

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