Give me back the Berlin Wall

….Give me Stalin and St. Paul
Give me Christ or give me Hiroshima
Destroy another fetus now
We don’t like children anyhow
I’ve seen the future, baby
It is murder

At some point in the last few decades, we seem to have lived through what Leonard Cohen predicted in the song quoted above, The Future: There’ll be the breaking of the ancient Western code.

One important aspect of that ancient western code was that children mattered more than any other demographic and we should sacrifice for them, not the other way around.

But consider three significant points of evidence in the argument this is no longer our code:

1. Abortion.

It’s always happened, true. From secret potions to beating of bellies to coat hangers and back street arrangements. In countries where it was made legal, the argument was that, if it no longer carried a criminal offence it might be made safe, early and rare. Those words were much used in the campaign during the original Roe vs Wade ruling.

Early and rare seem to have been dramatically forgotten in subsequent years, however.

Approximately 1 million abortions are performed annually in the USA of which, up to 18,000 are in the third trimester. Let’s hope they were at least safe.

2. Lockdown.

For two years, most countries went through several phases of closing the schools and shutting their children away in bedrooms to be educated remotely. School and community sport was banned, as was playing in the parks or even meeting with friends.

We all knew this would impact the most vulnerable kids, those without computers and parents at home, those with abusive family members, those with emotional and mental health issues. But we did it anyway.

Why? To save them from a disease we knew didn’t pose any material risk to the young. We sacrificed those at the start of their lives for the sake of those at the end of theirs.

3. Transgender.

We’ve accepted fiction as fact and figures of authority have presented this to children.

Quite reasonably, many children have now acted upon this lie and genuinely believe they are born in the wrong body and, worse, this unhappy situation can be ameliorated by a mixture of powerful drugs, life changing permanent surgery and the rest of society going along with this charade.

A study of 81,000 teenagers discovered 2,200 thought they were a different gender to the one everyone in the world would have said they were if asked about 10 years ago.

A not insignificant proportion of these confused kids are going to physically act upon these thoughts by taking drugs, slicing bits off themselves and acting out a cosplay fantasy of their new gender.

We can be bloody certain this will not improve their happiness at all.

Well done, everyone. Seriously, well done.

Bill’s Opinion

Golda Mier famously said of the Arabs;:

“We will only have peace with [them] when they love their children more than they hate us.”

I believe that quote is relevant today but it needs a slight modification to reflect our pathological self-loathing:

We will only have peace when we love our children more than we hate ourselves.

Please define “projection”

This is delicious from the Sydney Morning Herald’s Osman Faruqi, Culture News Editor and Columnist:

Diverse representation is important, but so is what people stand for.

Remember kids, everything before the word but is bullshit.

When the eight candidates in the running to replace Boris Johnson as leader of the Conservative Party were officially revealed on Wednesday, one thing immediately stood out.

Four of them – former chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak, his replacement Nadhim Zahawi, Attorney-General Suella Braverman, and Kemi Badenoch – are not white. With Sunak considered the favourite, it’s probable that the UK will soon have a person of colour as its prime minister for the first time.

Tugendhat is Jewish, but that’s not a ethnic minority in Osman’s mind, presumably? Wrong kind of minority?

Sunak’s grandparents were born in British India before migrating to East Africa (what is now Kenya and Tanzania) and then eventually making their way to the UK.

So what? So was Gandhi and Cliff fucking Richards. Also, British India? Who on earth calls it that in 2022?

Despite this, Sunak has embraced policies that would deny that same benefit to thousands of other potential migrants.

No. He embraced a policy that would deny that same benefit to people who travelled across (checks the map) at least 4 countries in the EU to then cross the English Channel. Sunak’s family filled in the appropriate form and waited to be invited. Let’s compare apples with apples, eh?

Is (diversity) just about having a room full of people from different backgrounds, genders and sexualities to tick a box and make everyone feel good, regardless of what those people actually do with their power? Or is the goal really about leveraging people’s lived experiences to ensure policies take into account the needs and desires of groups that have been historically marginalised?

Or it is about everyone agreeing with me, Osman Faruqi, sole holder of the Sacred Compass of Truth?

Undoubtedly, there is something seductive about the narrative of a “first non-white” or “first female” prime minister, because of the supposed signal it sends about social progress. But without interrogating the ideology behind those firsts, and the kinds of policies they intend to implement for the groups they represent, the signal doesn’t mean anything.

Or, “you’re not really black if you don’t agree with me”.

Bill’s Opinion

Osman likes diversity but not that kind of diversity. See also; people who like freedom of speech except for speech they dislike.

Maybe, and I’m just going to put this out there, the colour of your skin doesn’t matter as much as the content of your character?

Race ya!

We have a classic good news/bad news tale for you today.

Good news: the number of Australian Aboriginal people on the national census has doubled in 20 years.

Bad news: it’s probably not because there’s many more Australian Aboriginal people.

First of all, as with all surveys, the question asked is critical:

Rather than the current question – which asks respondents whether they are of “Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin” – he wants the ABS to ask: “Are you a verified or authenticated Aboriginal person?”

Verified or authenticated. Is it just me, or does anyone else feel mild discomfort at the thought of having to prove one’s ethnicity and receive an offical confirmation?

I feel certain we’ve seen that in the past and it never really ended well.

There’s a few contradictions the linked article chooses not to discuss.

An obvious one springs from these two paragraphs (bold, mine):

Bronwyn Carlson, the head of Indigenous Studies at Macquarie University, said there was no need for a “fury of panic” about the increase in Indigenous self-identification.

….It was only later in life, after researching her family history, that she wholeheartedly embraced her Aboriginal identity.

Am I reading that correctly? A person who didn’t previous realise they were Aboriginal now heads up an academic department studying matters Aboriginal? Was there no suitable applicant who was actually, y’know, raised in an Aboriginal family?

Not to labour the point, and I know one doesn’t need to be Greek to study the ancient Athenians, but it does feel like Macquarie Uni missed a golden opportunity for affirmative action in recruiting that job.

Another contradiction is the often raised subject of the historic and, sometimes claimed, ongoing genocide of this group of Australians. It’s hard to reconcile this with a doubling in 20 years of the same demographic. Perhaps this is explained by the third contradiction;

If being Aboriginal is to guarantee a life of persecution and discrimination, why are so many more people identifying as such?

Bill’s Opinion

Incentives matter. Ask Bill Pascoe.

If we legislate by ethnicity, we will eventually have to have the uncomfortable discussion about definitions of race. That will lead inevitably to definition of gradients of the ethnicity and creation of methods to prove it.

Play that movie to the end for me, please.

If a pronoun is used in the forest….

…will someone still take offence on the social mejias?

I can’t be bothered to post links to the latest pronoun fuckwittery, you can find your own examples anyway. There’s a new one every day, “large organisation mandates pronoun declarations from employees: ridicule ensues”.

A bank in the UK, a civil service department in Sydney. Rinse and repeat.

It’s all red meat for whichever team you support. If you’ve got a libertarian streak, it’s yet another imposition by the wifi password people. If you think the Guardian reports news, it’s a litmus test to flush out the bigots and all the xPhobe Nazis.

The question we never hear asked is, when was the last time you used someone’s pronoun in their presence?

He/him, she/her/ zhe/zim, etc., are words we’d mainly use about someone when they aren’t there.

In fact, many people consider it rude to use pronouns when the subject is in the room. When I was a child, if I said to my father, “she”, about my mother whilst in her presence, she’d angrily ask, “who’s she; the cat’s mother?”.

No, I’ve no idea what that meant either but I bloody well knew I was in trouble.

Now we have the internet I have learned it was/is a very common saying. Basically, use their damn name you rude bugger:

A mild reproof, especially to a child, for impolite use of the pronoun she when a person’s name would have been more well mannered.

Bill’s Opinion

I’d like to think I was brought up well. I try to be polite to strangers unless they’ve done something to deserve otherwise.

If you give me your name on a phone call or if it’s on a badge on your jacket, I will try to use it whenever appropriate. Your pronouns seem somewhat irrelevant to me, therefore.

In fact, if I were to talk about you to your colleague in a subsequent interaction, I’d also use your name. If I couldn’t remember it, I’d say “your colleague”.

It feels like a backward and irrelevant step to spend so much time talking about pronouns, given I and many others would be very unlikely to have ever needed them.

What people should remember however, is the same people who were taught these manners are also from the same stock who are the world’s politest people until the precise moment they become the opposite. Maybe keep that in mind when making demands on our language, they.

The global IQ tests continue to be set

How did you do with this week’s IQ test? Pass or fail?

You may have failed if you’ve recently started a post on social media with the words, “As a <insert inherent characteristic you have no control over> person, my opinion on the overturning of Roe vs Wade is….”, or words of a similar sentiment.

Newsflash: nobody gives a fuck what you think, especially if you haven’t actually read the Supreme Court ruling and are opining on the newspaper reports of it instead.

Yes, I am aware of the irony of that statement on a blog post about it but, in my defence, people come here by choice for my opinions.

I’ve written about abortion twice before here. First time about an individual, second time specifically about New South Wales. My opinion hasn’t changed; I’d prefer to live in a world where abortion didn’t happen for factors of convenience but only for safety reasons.

Many of those who loudly champion abortion on demand leverage that last reason, stating the mental healths risks to the mother, inferring the risk of suicide. But that same logic has resulting in several thousand teenage breasts being sliced off in the last decade and, frankly, piss off with that as a justification.

If your best argument for taking a physical action with extreme consequences is a possible risk of suicide, perhaps you might want to investigate psychiatry and the possibility of dedicated round the clock nursing care.

But I digress.

Despite what the public statements of organisations such as Dick’s Sporting Goods or Atlassian might suggest, abortion is still legal in the USA, it’s just been downgraded from a Federal right enshrined in the Constitution, to a matter each State’s legislative body can write laws about. If you think this means California is about to ban or limit abortion next week, you’ve not been paying much attention to the changes in political mood of that State since Ronald Reagan was Governor.

But think about this for a moment; those who are wailing about the end of the world following this ruling are questioning that it should be a democratically-decided matter.

How confident must one be of the moral certainty of your position if you’d prefer it if your fellow citizens weren’t given a choice?

As for the front page coverage of the lesbian Wendyball player, Megan Rapainoe’s rambling and incoherent unsolicited Zoom broadcast (sorry, “press conference”); we’ve truly gone down the rabbithole. What next, A ten minute monologue from Elton John on his favourite brand of tampon?

Bill’s Opinion

Cool yer jets, everyone.

Abortion has not been made illegal in the USA. It may, in future, become so in a couple of states. If so, it adds yet another to our list of choices for those who are “pro-choice”:

  1. Abstain from having sex.
  2. Abstain from having sex with someone you know you don’t want to be be with for the rest of your life.
  3. Use contraception, but be aware this carries a residual risk.
  4. If an “accident” happens, carry the baby to term and decide whether you can cope with parenthood after it’s born.
  5. Offer the child up for adoption to one of the desperate couples who can’t conceive naturally.
  6. Drive across the border.
  7. Kill the damn thing like a virus.

I’m every woman

The 2022 version of the classic false premise question, “when did you stop beating your wife?” is:

What is the definition of ‘woman’?

Hilariously, it’s catching out all sorts of people. To be fair to the left wing politicians and Supreme Court nominees, it is an absolute gotchya question, designed to trip you up.

The two popular answers are, “adult human female” and “anyone who identifies as a woman”, and either will get you into huge trouble on social media and neither are particularly satisfactory.

The first is somewhat circular as it relies on another inferred definition, “female”. What’s a woman? It’s a female. What’s a female? It’s a woman. Turtles all the way down.

The second makes the usual error of the left-leaning in that it assumes we can over-rule or or completely discount human nature and response to incentives as a factor. Probably a billion family trees have ended abruptly due to that mistake and several women have been raped in female only prisons in the last few years for the same reason.

The husband and wife biologists on the Dark Horse podcast have an interesting discussion on their latest episode where they explore the underpinning biological reality of sex in our species and others. It’s an educational chat and debunks some of the more insane hot takes to be found on the digital Beldam that is social media. But it still misses the mark.

What we need is a pithy, definitive reply to the question. One that deals with the existence of the extremely rare genetic mutations we class as intersex and the increasingly vocal category we used to categorise as gender dysphoria but now call “stunning and brave” and invite into primary schools to read stories to pre-pubescent children.

Bill’s Opinion

The correct answer when asked the question, “what is the definition of ‘woman’?” is, in the words of Justice Potter Stewart:

I know it when I see it”.

Remember our handy heuristic; If you find your inner voice saying something along the lines of, “Christ, that’s an ugly man/woman“, it’ll be because they aren’t.

Use that as the basis of your response. Trust the tools evolution has equipped you with. If someone wants to play language games with you, put it back to them; “show me a picture of someone whose sex is unclear to you and I’ll try help you work it out for that specific case”.

Of course, this answer is probably more helpful to those who’d normally answer, “adult human female” than the other answer, but I’ll put it out there for royalty-free usage anyway.

If jealousy burned calories

…we’d instantly solve quite a few people’s major life issues.

But sadly, the effort expended on envious feelings is neither material nor measurable. This is both good and bad news for Mary Madigan, freelance writer for Mammamia (now there’s a career path to infinite riches!).

Good news because she can get a couple of hundred dollars knocking out heartfelt columns about why we shouldn’t celebrate an obese celebrity losing a lot of weight. Bad news, because Mary is burning emotional energy being bitter over other people’s good fortune, and even more mental energy avoiding reflecting on poor life choices she has made.

The back story is a minor Australian celebrity (if that isn’t a tautology), Chrissie Swan, dropped a wheelbarrow load of weight recently and has been congratulated by lots of commentators. Her Instagram feed has a flood of positive comments, many of which are middle aged men who’ve suddenly decided she’s hot.

Our “plus sized” columnist takes issue with their sudden change of opinion. Chrissie was always attractive, she claims. It’s a backhanded compliment to suggest she’s now looking great, according to our self-appointed moral arbiter.

Context is everything, of course.

This is Mary:

This was Chrissie Swan:

This is Chrissie Swan now:

I’m sure we can all agree on what a terrible and destructive transformation she’s inflicted on herself.

The feedback from Mary’s syndicated article was predictable. By which I don’t mean lots of stupid people went on the internet and called her rude names but that she would feign shock and surprise at this reaction and then post a self-obsessed semi-naked picture on Instagram affirming to herself how gorgeous she is and her superiority in the victim olympics.

It’s been a very tiring week because my inbox got flooded with abusive messages after an article I wrote for Mamamia got picked up by The Sun & New York Post. Obviously, when men attack women on the internet the insults are always about your looks. Fat, unattractive, unfuckable…. It’s unoriginal but it did make me feel sad but then I remembered I’m gorgeous and now I’m back.

Bills Opinion

There is no problem with Chrissie Swan’s weight loss. We celebrate it because, as decent human beings, we give positive feedback to obviously good life choices made by others.

It’s a social contract; we tell each other what we’re doing well and try to kindly point out areas for improvement.

If Mary doesn’t like that social contract, it’s incumbent on her to describe the alternative system she would suggest we employ.

It’s always dangerous to attempt to diagnose mental illness from a distance but it’s clearly an unhealthy thought process to convince oneself being grossly overweight is somehow a positive choice.

Would Mary sympathise with 500 words written by a chain smoker trying to convince us it’s wrong to celebrate someone giving up the cancer sticks?

Perhaps it’s just the sunk cost fallacy to wish to convince other people of these illogical views. In addition, the editors of the publications paying for these columns are encouraging negative health outcomes by printing it. Perhaps the editors are analogous to the circus ringmasters introducing the freak show exhibit.

It’s as if we are being asked to casually put aside several million years of evolution and consciously ignore the instinctive mental rank order sorting of other humans by attractiveness. Perhaps that’s possible, but the clever money and every sexual interaction in the history of the planet suggests the exact opposite is more likely.

This denial of reality can be neatly explained by Sailer’s first law of female journalism:

The most heartfelt articles by female journalists tend to be demands that social values be overturned in order that, Come the Revolution, the journalist herself will be considered hotter-looking.

More chins than the Hong Kong phone directory…..

The Taliban are wetting zherselves laughing at us

Remember how we’ve not been consulted on the language change that our legal and media institutions have decided we have to make? Yet we have to play whatever manipulative game criminals and those accused of some of the worst crimes decide they want us to play?

Well, it’s contagious. Gone viral like a Fauci research grant:

In case you weren’t aware, Pusey is accused of reckless driving. When he was pulled over, the police were struck by a lorry and four died. He posted a video on social media of the final moments of one.

Even before the conclusion of the court case, we can be fairly certain we’ll all be better off with him locked in a dark hole and then losing the key. Sure, due process an’ all that, but the preponderance of evidence suggests this is not a pleasant individual regardless of whether he’s convicted of a crime.

So, he announced his new pronouns to the judge, attendant court officials and media.

What was the response?

Exhibit A, your Honour:

I’m sure the journalist Erin Lyons is only following the approved style guide for News.Com.Au, but I’d love to ask her what she really thinks about having to write “they” instead of “he” or even the more accurate “despicable cunt”?

Bill’s Opinion

In law, we rightly operate on the principle ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat (proof lies on him who asserts, not on him who denies).

But sudden announcements of a change to preferred gender pronouns do not fall into this category. The burden of proof must surely lie with the person who claims to be something the physical and biological evidence refutes.

Sure, we can be polite to these people and, in general day to day life, accomodate their preferences. It’s a free choice we might make, not a request which must be obeyed in all circumstances.

We might debate where in the range of circumstances polite society should ignore a person’s demand to comply with unusual uses of language. But if you feel convicted criminals or those accused of serious crimes should be granted a sudden demand to call them by new names, you and I are living in a different reality.

As with the fable of the Emperor’s New Clothes, it often takes innocent eyes to see the truth. Ask a child what they are looking at in these cases and their answer will be straightforward.

Perhaps Erin Lyons should unlearn her recent education and be welcomed back to the reality the rest of us inhabit.

Preferred pronouns: murderer, killer, psycho

Australia doesn’t have many serial killers or mass murderers. Well, not if one excludes South Australia from the census, anyway.

One of the recent cases involves this person:

“A NSW woman convicted three times for homicide has been arrested again in Sydney.”

Riiiiiight.

In the same news outlet, a report of a child abuser who breaks the gender stereotype for that crime as she is female:

Riiiiight…..

Bill’s Opinion

Imagine looking in from the outside on a society that panders to the whims of triple murderers and child abusers by changing the language and cultural norms of thousands of years. What conclusion might one draw regarding the sustainability of that society?

I have no proof that Reginald Arthurell and James Tubbs aren’t genuinely deeply convinced they were born female in male bodies, or whatever version of the several explanations we are offered for transgenderism, but I do know that the very last people I’m prepared to offer the benefit of the doubt to have been convicted of murder and sexual assault.

Presumably, at some point in the recent past, Catie Mcleod, Audrey Conklin, Michael Ruiz and Emma Colton were summoned to a briefing at Holt Street, Sydney and received instructions on the new style guide for News.Com.Au, requiring their copy to be filed using the preferred pronouns of anyone they write about, regardless of the likely credibility of such demands.

Such a briefing must have occurred as this switch in language is now consistently applied throughout the publication. No journalist is going to get off the spike if they refer to Arthurell as “Reginald” or male.

Meanwhile, 99.9% of people read the reports linked above and feel a visceral disconnect from the words and reality. We read the report of “female” Regina and think, “Fuck off. He’s an evil piece of shit who is taking the piss out of us. He even chose a female name with such an obvious double-entendre rhyme as part of his sick joke. Whoever writes this crap must know this too, so why do they pretend down is up and black is white?“.

Perhaps we should applaud this self-destructive writing from the media. The more they insist on ignoring reality, the fewer of us believe anything they report.

First among First Nations equals

We just keep racking up the wins. In the same year we had our first Aboriginal Neurologist, now we have our first First Nations candidate for Mayor of Sydney.

It is 179 years this month since the City of Sydney was established by an Act of the NSW Parliament. In all that time, an Aboriginal Australian has never been nominated for Lord Mayor of Sydney – until Wiradjuri woman Yvonne Weldon.

Seems like a missed opportunity by all sides of politics. Still, we’re making progress as the incumbent is also running with a First Nations candidate too. Or is she?

Emelda Davis is on her {Mayor Moore’s} current ticket, and is talking up her “diverse Indigenous ancestry as as second-generation Australian South Sea Islander of First Nations and Caribbean descent” – but when I point this out to Weldon’s campaign manager, she’s definitive: “Concerning Emelda Davis, she is a South Sea Islander. South Sea Islanders are not First Nations.”

I wonder what the definition is of “First Nations” and how Weldon’s campaign manager can be sure Davis doesn’t qualify?

Melbourne doesn’t fare much better. Wiradjuri man Professor Mark McMillan was the first Indigenous person to run for council, unsuccessfully, late last year on Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp’s ticket. Whilst she won a definitive second term, she didn’t win enough votes to select him on her team.

More on McMillan later. Back to Yvonne Weldon, what relevant experience will she bring to the role?

She’s drawing upon her experience as elected Chair of the Metropolitan Local Aboriginal Land Council, Deputy Chair of the NSW Australia Day Council, Board member of Domestic Violence NSW and Board member of Redfern Jarjum College to bring leadership experience to her campaign.

Perhaps the kindest thing one can say about that CV is at least she will feel comfortable sitting in public sector committee meetings every day.

So, to recap; of the three candidates mentioned above (Weldon, McMillan and Davis), two are “First Nations”, one is not.

Ok.

Bill’s Opinion

Ethnicity really should be the least interesting human characteristic when assessing someone’s suitability for a job.

Over the last three decades, it seems we have lived through a cultural version of the Brunhes–Matuyama Reversal, where the Right stopped being concerned about race and the Left took on that pointless angst instead.

We now have the unedifying situation of two mayoral campaigns competing over who qualifies as more “First Nations”. What next, DNA tests?