I get YouTube comments

I thought my email inbox was full of crap, but this is just ridiculous.

how is he a nazi you know jordan b peterson isn’t even right wing right neither is he on the left now i i know in your ideology anyone right of Stalin is a nazi but he’s in this place called the center he despises any side that gets to much leverage and becomes extreme be it the right or left both are despicable once they get to much power the right and left need to be balanced for any real progress to be made both side’s need each other but once one side gets to much power and influence like the left has now he gets a whole host of problems and the divide is so great we can’t even talk to eachother anymore and nothing good could come from that and yes the professors are brainwashing their students i’ve seen way to much evidence to say other wise just look at what happen at evergreen college with bret weinstein for example this shit is going to far now look if you guys keep calling everyone you disagree with a nazi and keep crying wolf your going to make real nazi’s witch is already happen with the alt right a response from your nonsense they don’t even try to hide it all i hear is you saying he’s a lair he’s a white supremacist talking about how he’s misrepresentation the collage campuses while your misrepresentation every word he says and putting words in his mouth while as far as i could see is that you are the lair or are just in complete denial blind to whats really going on

Back in the good old days when we had to carve our words in stone with a chisel, people put a little more care in their compositions.

As a dog returns to his vomit, so a fool repeats his folly

I don’t get Jesse Singal. I don’t pay much attention to him, but one thing I know is that he is the mainstream media’s go-to guy for ‘science’ reporting on trans issues, that he knows less about trans people than I do (and I don’t claim authority), and that trans people detest him. Julia Serano has been writing about this guy for some time.

Many people know of Jesse Singal as a senior/science editor at New York Magazine. Within transgender communities, Singal has garnered a reputation (particularly over the last two years) for repeatedly promoting ideas that are in opposition to, or which flat-out undermine, trans people’s perspectives on issues that impact our lives. He has done this in the form of seemingly serious-minded articles, but also in more flippant or provocative exchanges from his Twitter account (which he recently shut down).

He has a reputation, and not a good one. That should be the message you take from this. You could argue that it isn’t deserved (I’d disagree), you can say that you like his take on things or that he’s a good writer, but that’s all irrelevant to the main problem here: the community that he writes about, and weirdly frequently writes about, dislikes his take and frequently argues — calmly and dispassionately, as Serano did — against his opinions, and every time he intrudes into trans concerns, he is unwelcome and a lightning rod for anger. Serano isn’t the only one!

If you must know one thing about journalist Jesse Singal, it’s that he loves reporting on trans issues—trans kids, in particular. If you must know another thing, it’s that a lot of trans people, myself included, loathe his coverage of trans issues with a once-fiery passion that has since cooled into a dormant rage.

His reputation as a transphobe who is compelled to make frequent complaints about the trans community is the problem here…so why do major publications seek out his writings on the subject? They must know that transgender men and women are going to be angered by his positions.

On Monday, The Atlantic revealed that they are the latest mainstream publication to play host to Singal’s bullshit, publishing “When Children Say They’re Trans,” the cover story for their upcoming July/August issue.

I’m going to guess that the reason major publications like The Atlantic pay Jesse Singal to write is that they like dumping on the transgender community — that they are rewarded with profit by the cisgender masses, like me, for putting the seal of approval on Singal’s biases.

It’s a misleading article, too. The cover is all about the difficulties of transitioning and makes these alarming claims about 13 year olds wanting hormones (with pubescent kids, the question is about hormone blockers) and surgery (every article I’ve read by a trans person on this subject talks about how surgery isn’t required, that it’s a decision made only after long consideration, and why are you so concerned about what’s in their pants anyway?), and then the article itself focuses almost entirely on adults who detransitioned. It gives the impression that every trans man and woman eventually ends up unhappy and wanting to go back to their ‘natural’ state.

But here’s the big question.

Why has The Atlantic decided to publish as its cover story a cis writer’s article about trans people who aren’t trans—during Pride month, no less? Why is this the only detransition narrative that most media seems interested in covering?

Ooh, ooh, I can answer those! Because The Atlantic only wants to hear from the cis perspective, and they only want articles that cast doubt and discourage people from transitioning. And Jesse Singal is the man you go to if you want someone eager to express exactly those opinions.

Publications, take note: Jesse Singal is more than a little creepy on the subject of transgender issues. He is the last person you want gracing your cover.

Our president is a petulant little child

We now have the story behind this infamous photo.

“It was at this point, towards the end of the summit, that Chancellor Merkel of Germany and Prime Minister Trudeau of Canada got together with some of the allies and really wanted to press Trump directly to sign the communiqué, that talked about the commitment to a rules-based international order. Trump was sitting there with his arms crossed, clearly not liking the fact that they were ganging up on him. He eventually agreed and said OK he’ll sign it. And at that point, he stood up, put his hand in his pocket, his suit jacket pocket, and he took two Starburst candies out, threw them on the table and said to Merkel, ‘Here, Angela. Don’t say I never give you anything,’” Bremmer described to CBS.

You know, right now Angela Merkel has a stronger claim to being “leader of the free world” than does the American president, and it’s annoying how little respect she gets.

This isn’t the first time Merkel, who has been chancellor since 2005, has had strange encounters with her male counterparts. In 2008, Italy’s former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi once tried to play hide and seek with the chancellor, and in 2009 he kept her waiting for a meeting while he chatted on the phone. In 2007, Russian President Vladimir Putin famously brought a dog to a meeting with Merkel, who is known to be afraid of dogs. And former President George W. Bush surprised Merkel by giving her a shoulder rub in 2006.

She’s not progressive enough for me, so this isn’t an endorsement, but still…she’s so much better than Trump. And Berlusconi and Putin and Bush.

Oh, and Trump paid a visit to Minnesota yesterday. Duluth is way over on the other side of the state, though, so I didn’t go (yeah, that’s the only reason). He lied about a bunch of stuff, promised to win Minnesota in 2020, praised that great guy, Kim Jong Un, and praised himself.

“Our people are the smartest and hardest working. You ever notice they call the other side the elite? I have a much better apartment than they do. I’m smarter than they are. I’m richer than they are. I became president and they didn’t and I’m representing the most lovely and best people on earth — the deplorables. You remember that?”

Hate the elites…and by the way, I’m more elite than they are.

And people cheered. That’s the most chilling part. People still cheer this cheesy old liar.

Dennis Markuze is back online

He hasn’t changed a bit. He’s posting on alt.atheism under a new name, “prophetofrevengerXX”, with “XX” a couple of random digits to help avoid searches. Then how do we know it’s Markuze? Take a look at one example of a post. Classic.

He harassed me for a couple of decades. I’m just mentioning this because, while he’s not pestering me now (I don’t think…but I have so many email filters to block him), his usual pattern is one of rising obsession and increasingly lunatic lashing out at the people he hates.

Visceral horror

For years, I was involved in these uncomfortable debates within the atheist community where one side would argue “Reason and Science!” and the other would say “Emotions matter!”, and I would uneasily argue that they both matter — uneasy because I’m happier talking about science and am not at all charismatic or able to draw on any kind of emotional sympathy. Old Nerd Talking, that’s me.

But right now, in the court of public opinion, we’re seeing the debate play out, and what’s clearly winning is emotion — and, I think, reason as well, but it’s the feelings that are driving the discourse. I think that’s important. It really settles the argument that both are necessary. What’s punching everyone in the gut so hard is that the Republicans have thrown away any attempt to mask their lack of humanity.

An example: when my kids were very young, I let them watch what I thought was a harmless, fun, children’s movie. I didn’t realize that it was a horror movie.

That movie was Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Does anyone remember this character?

It was striking: my kids were fine with the movie, until this guy shows up — a villain called The Child Catcher who snatches up children and drags them away from their families. He affected them immediately in a way that no other monster movie ever did. They’d cover their eyes. They’d run out of the room. They probably had nightmares about him, because all I had to do was say the words “Child Catcher!” and they’d shudder. I think if they had the choice of being attacked by the wolfman or the Child Catcher, the wolfman would win every time.

I got to visit my little grandson a few weeks ago. He’s 7 months old. Babies are fine-tuned, sensitive people detectors, and you could see it in his behavior, the way his eyes would light up and he’d squirm with happiness when he saw his mommy and daddy. He’s barely a person, he’s new and squishy and helpless, and the first concept his newly developed brain is forming is a love for his parents. I realized that I’d die fighting anyone trying to separate them.

It’s totally irrational. But this stuff matters. Donald Trump and the entire Republican party have steered themselves right into Child Catcher territory.

I’d like to think this would lead to their downfall, but unfortunately, Trumpsters also love children, and the only way they can resolve the dissonance is to dehumanize brown children even more — they aren’t babies, they’re future MS-13 gang members! That’s precisely what we’re seeing right now, and it could make everything even worse.

What would Liam Neeson do?

Say he got word that some terrorist had kidnapped hundreds of babies and was holding them hostage until the government met his ransom demands — and he’s no piker, he’s asking for tens of billions of dollars.

Well, I’m a little disappointed that no action hero has stepped forward to deal with this situation.

Trump administration officials have been sending babies and other young children forcibly separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border to at least three “tender age” shelters in South Texas, The Associated Press has learned.

Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the Rio Grande Valley shelters described play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis. The government also plans to open a fourth shelter to house hundreds of young migrant children in Houston, where city leaders denounced the move Tuesday.

Since the White House announced its zero tolerance policy in early May, more than 2,300 children have been taken from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, resulting in a new influx of young children requiring government care.

Rachel Maddow has the response I would make, because I’m no action hero either.

A #NationalStrike? Think about it.

From Libbie Grant on Facebook, here’s something we can prepare for.

Folks. There is serious talk today all over Twitter about organizing a national strike to force the GOP-controlled Congress to either impeach Trump or force his resignation. This is a great idea, but it’s something we need to prepare for, and we may not have a whole lot of time to prepare.

What is a national strike? It’s when everybody in the country refuses to spend money. If you can also refuse to go to work and do your job, that’s good too, but the crucial part is the refusal to spend money. 70% of the USA’s GDP is personal consumption. That means our entire economy–and by extension, our government–depends on us spending money on the stuff we use or own. We have almost no exports anymore; our exports are, in effect, our individual citizens’ personal consumption.

Those of you who are my age or older remember what happened just after 9/11. Everybody was freaked out and shocked, so Americans hunkered down in their homes and did nothing, went nowhere, bought nothing unless they absolutely had to. Just a few days of decreased spending had a massive impact on our economy and our government. I remember George W. Bush going on TV and pleading with Americans to start spending money again. That wasn’t just another idiotic thing W said because he’s a dummy; it’s what Congress asked him to do because they found themselves unable to function at that critical time due to the sudden cessation of our economy.

That’s a national strike. That’s what we can do–what we NEED to do–in order to force the Republican-controlled Congress to act. They will NOT act without it.

We all need to be preparing now for the national strike. With luck, it will only need to last for a few days, and Congress will cave. But we should be prepared for a longer strike if necessary.

Here’s what you need to start doing right now in order to make this strike effective and ensure you can continue to participate without putting yourself or your loved ones at risk of too much discomfort.

-Stock up on non-perishable food, enough to last up to a month. Canned stuff. Can your own goods now if you know how to do it and have the equipment. Go for foods that are calorie-dense and/or filling. Dried beans are cheap and will keep you going indefinitely. Buy a ton of them and store them in solid, critter-proof containers.

-Make sure you have a good can opener and a spare.

-Stock up on medications and other care supplies for a month or more.

-Stock up on all the pet supplies you will need for a month or more.

-Assume that this evil, fascist government will attempt to fight back by shutting down utilities in some cities. That may include your city. So that means you must: 1) Get those big 5-gallon water jugs, lots of them, and fill them up now, and put secure coverings over the openings so bugs can’t get in. Store them in a safe place. 2) Have camping supplies? Great! Stock up on white gas or other fuel sources to run camping cook stoves. If you don’t have a camping stove already, get one now. They aren’t terribly expensive and you can find used ones on Craigslist. You should have one anyway in an emergency kit (as those of us who live in earthquake country know!) 3) Be sure you have working flashlights and plenty of batteries. 4) Get a solar charger for your personal electronic devices. 5) Pull out some cash and keep it in a safe place in case you need to buy anything in a real emergency situation. Or put aside valuable items you think you can trade to your neighbors. 6) Consider what your town is like during the summer and think ahead to your comfort needs. Plan how to meet those needs without electricity or money. Maybe that means identifying the coolest location in your neighborhood and making a plan to spend the hottest hours of the day there. Start thinking about this stuff now. 7) Check in with your elderly and disabled neighbors to be sure they are similarly prepared for utility shutdowns and have supplies laid away and a way to contact help if they need it. 8) Make a plan for waste disposal if those utilities are shut down, too.

Be prepared. A national strike is almost certainly coming at this point. With luck, it won’t be a long-term situation and it’ll be over in a matter of a handful of days. But be sure you’re ready in case it’s not over so quickly.

I would support this. The only question is what fraction of the population would actually join in…because face it, there are a heck of a lot of people who think fascism is just fine.

Another thing that could be done: Marches are planned all across the country for 30 June. I’ll be there!

Yep, they’re Nazis. No more waffling about it.

I’ve been told I’m a member of gang of nihilists whose life’s mission is to undermine all of western civilization, so I’m totally unsurprised by the latest rhetoric from the neo-Nazis at Fox News.

You think any of these people care about family separation? If they did, they’d be upset about the collapse of the American family, which is measurable and real. They’re not. They welcome that collapse, because strong families are an impediment to their political power.

Name a few lefties who hate families, OK? All that stupid labeling that we heard when the war in Iraq was being justified because they “hate freedom” is now spilling over into their characterization of their political opponents here in the US. They’re tearing children from their parents’ arms, and telling us that we just hate families.

Kinder, Küche, Kirche! Volksaufklärung und Propaganda!