Bugger thy neighbour

Kristian Niemietz is a German chap working for the Institute of Economic Affairs, and he is worth listening to on matters such as housing and health policy. My guess is if you wanted someone to draw up a white paper on how to best allocate scarce resources in a particular field, he’s your man.

He’s also a good example of why technocrats don’t make good politicians or leaders. Look at this tweet:


Niemetz has a PhD in Political Economy (King’s College London) & MSc in Economics (Humboldt University Berlin). He seems to have spent his entire adult life living in capital cities mixing with white-collar professionals and academics. My guess is every apartment he’s lived in, including his current gaff, has shared a wall with someone much like him whether he realises it or not. He says he doesn’t identify with his next door neighbour only because he’s yet to experience living next door to someone he really doesn’t identify with. For example, I bet he and his neighbour place considerable value on getting a good night’s sleep.

The trouble with well-educated, international people like Niemetz is they fall into the trap of meeting foreigners who are much like them except for the accent and assume cultural differences stop there. Of course, if you hang out with academics and white-collar professionals it doesn’t matter if you’re in Berlin, London, Singapore, or Rio de Janeiro, it’s all the same. But if you live beside someone who has no reason to get up in the morning and decides to play music at full blast until 5am, or deals drugs in the stairwell of your apartment block, or uses it as a toilet, or keys your car on a regular basis, all of a sudden you realise the character of your neighbour becomes central to your quality of life. The only reason Niemetz doesn’t know his neighbour is because the latter is culturally conditioned to be considerate, and to get up at 7am each morning to go to work. If he wasn’t, I suspect Niemetz would know him intimately.

If you start dispensing with old-fashioned ideas like sovereignty and believe a neighbour is no different from a Brussels bureaucrat, you’re going to be in a for a rude awakening when diversity and vibrancy moves in next door. Of course, those who advocate such policies rarely have to live with the consequences.

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Corporate Punishment

About 18 months ago, some lonely voices on the dissident right in the US began warning of the worrying antics of large tech and financial organisations with respect to political wrongthinkers. The ZMan was particularly vociferous on this, citing the case of some obscure neo-Nazi website having its domain name yanked without any transparency or due process. Within months of that we saw alt-right figures being denied hosting and other web-based services such as Cloudflare, which prevents DOS attacks. These actions at the time appeared to be the result of Antifa mobs piling pressure on the service providers and finding sympathetic (or scared) managers within who would do their bidding. As usual, the traditional right did nothing except help the enemy by holding aloft their principles; I’ll come onto that in a minute.

Pretty quickly Antifa worked out they could get anyone from the alt-right booted from social media and their contracts with web service companies cancelled, and that’s precisely what they did. As I wrote here, I thought Antifa would overreach and put people in a position where they had little recourse but to violence:

Ordinary people suddenly found a handy source of income has been cut off simply because the tech giants were unable or unwilling to stand up to a gaggle of hard-left thugs. It’s only a matter of time before ordinary Americans find themselves denied access to the website or payment processing platform their livelihoods depend on, without ever knowing the reason why. If that happens, people will start throwing their support behind whichever outfit professes to be on their side and against the people responsible, regardless of how nasty and thuggish they are.

The ZMan took it one step further, and said these tactics were endorsed by the ruling classes, happy to allow Antifa mobs and social media companies to enforce the censorship they are forbidden by law from imposing directly. He was one of the earliest voices to warn that political censorship and punishment was being meted out via compliant social media giants and other corporations, and it appears he was absolutely right. Look how quickly we’ve gone from Antifa mobs getting Nazi websites shut down to this:

Facebook and PayPal accounts used to organise “yellow vest” protests that have seen MPs verbally abused in Westminster have been deleted.

Organiser James Goddard’s Facebook profile disappeared amid calls for police to prevent the group from “harassing” politicians, journalists and pro-EU protesters.

His PayPal account was disabled a short time later on Tuesday afternoon.

The reason this chap’s PayPal account has been deleted is because he upset Anne Soubry, and someone made a call to PayPal to tell them to inflict the standard punishment. If it were you or I being abused, or even knifed on a London street, nobody would be interested. But attack a member of the ruling class and suddenly services on which you depend are cancelled without warning. Where’s the transparency here? Where’s the due process? And where’s the consistency? When Nigel Farage was attacked by a mob in a pub, the media classes thought it highly amusing. Plod didn’t seem much interested either, simply because their masters don’t like Farage very much.

Now the conservative right have thus far defended the actions of the likes of PayPal and Facebook on the grounds private companies should have the right to do business with whomever they please. I have two problems with this: firstly, businesses don’t have a right to do business with whomever they please as whole rafts of anti-discrimination legislation attest. There’s not much point in defending a principle which hasn’t been upheld in these lands since flares were in fashion, unless as part of a philosophical discussion. Secondly, whereas it may be reasonable for a restaurateur to refuse service to someone who can eat next door, how does this work with PayPal? And where does it stop? Credit card providers, banks and insurance companies are already coming under pressure in the US to refuse service to those who own guns or wish to buy one. How long before Mastercard (who’s politics are evident) decides it’s going to cut people off without warning? Well, you just switch to Visa, right?

Not quite: as we saw when three or four social media companies all banned Alex Jones within hours of one another, these actions are coordinated. If one company bans a wrongthinker, it’s almost certain their peers will follow suit. There are many restaurants in town, but only a few credit card companies. If they collectively decide to blacklist you, you’re screwed. Now the dimmer free-market fundamentalists will say “If you don’t like it, start your own service, market forces, innit?” Which again is a great topic for discussion in an Ayn Rand convention down the local pub, but the average person is not in a position to start their own bank. And where does this stop? There used to be a principle that utility companies such as electricity, phone, and water providers had to supply all customers regardless of who they were. Nowadays people are just as dependent on credit card, banking, and insurance services yet they appear to be allowed, thanks to a few lines of font 4 text in 18 pages of terms and conditions, to just immediately halt services without warning and without explanation. “Don’t like it?” say the free marketeers. “Well, start your own insurance company, then!” If the right can’t come up with a better response than this, they deserve the left’s foot on their necks for the foreseeable future.

Note what’s interesting in this latest incident is the ruling classes don’t even need the Antifa mob any more. No, all it took was 50 MPs writing to Plod and PayPal got the message loud and clear. The Antifa mobs were useful in terms of testing the water, seeing if these companies would knuckle under and do as they’re told, but now they’re surplus to requirements. Bear in mind all his has happened in less than two years, and try to imagine where we’ll be in another two. We’re rapidly heading into a situation where the ruling classes can effectively cut you off from services on which you depend as punishment for stepping out of line. People are making lots of noise about China’s social credit system, but at least the CPC is open about it. Our ruling classes are doing the same thing while claiming it’s nothing to do with them because we live in a free society. Free for whom, exactly?

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Should societies be pleasant or durable?

Ilhan Omar was born in Mogadishu, Somalia before coming to the United States as a refugee aged 14. Last November she became the first Somali to be elected to the United States Congress, and one of the first Muslim women. She has yet to even take her seat in Congress, but she’s already decided American society needs a radical overhaul:


I have written before about how I don’t think new citizens to a country should be given the vote: if you want a say in how you are governed, feel free to stay at home. I might be persuaded those who have lived 20 years in a country should have the right to vote, but I also don’t see their being denied as a fundamental injustice. The views of those who were born in a country ought to prevail over those of newcomers who chose to relocate, but people are so wedded to the idea of universal suffrage this idea sits well outside the Overton window in the west. The trouble is, universal suffrage is about 100 years old at best, which in historical terms makes it very much still in the experimental stage.

One of the more hubristic characteristics of modern political commentators and activists is they believe their preferred policies mark the end of history, that the societal conditions they have largely imposed on others will be here forever. Few stop to think that the Ottoman empire lasted 600 years before disappearing altogether, so perhaps the jury is still out on 5 years of gay marriage and 40 years of wimmin’s rights. Now it may well be that a society in which religion plays no major role, gays get married, and legislation ensures gender parity in the upper management of big companies is very pleasant and all who live in it enjoy long, healthy, fulfilling lives. But that doesn’t necessarily mean the society will survive more than a generation or two. It rarely occurs to people that pleasant societies might not make durable societies, whereas history certainly suggests that societies built on harsh conditions can prove remarkably enduring.

My point is that any society which allows rank outsiders to enter and immediately set about agitating for radical change probably won’t last very long. Any society which allows foreigners to take part in their national political process such that they attempt to overturn parts of the constitution, suppress free speech, and denounce the population as racist is engaged in a suicide pact. The Founding Fathers stipulated that the US president must be an American; had it occurred to them that Somalis would be running for Congress and seeking to radically change America, they might well have imposed similar criteria for all holders of elected office. Serious countries do not allow their political systems to be infiltrated in this manner: Britain banned Catholics from holding public office for two hundred years, believing them to be a fifth column. Somehow, America has gone from a country which insisted newcomers adopt their values to celebrating those who don’t.

I’m sure there are lots of very good, principled arguments for allowing Ilhan Omar to run for Congress and then denounce Americans as white supremacists, just as I am sure there are sound reasons for allowing known jihadists to roam free in European capitals. But the question is, can a society which tolerates this survive? And if so, how long before it is unrecognisable? This won’t end well.

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Pink beats black

The BBC brings news of an interesting play in the great game of victimhood poker:

US comedian and actor Kevin Hart says he has stepped down from hosting the 2019 Oscars following a controversy over homophobic tweets.

Kevin Hart is a straight black male, and if he’s being fired over homophobic tweets it suggests sexual minorities trump ethnic minorities.

The choice of Hart for host was only announced on Tuesday.

But tweets from a decade ago emerged of apparent anti-gay slurs, sparking calls for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to drop him.

Rummaging through decades-worth of social media postings in the hope of unearthing something to be outraged about seems to have become a popular hobby for some. As far as I can tell, this is the offending tweet (which isn’t a decade old, BTW):

My guess is if he’d made a joke about a gay white man he’d have got away with it, but having denigrated all gays his skin colour wasn’t enough to save him. Not if the lily-white, ultra-woke Oscars committee are the ones making the decision, anyway.

In 2015, by which time his profile had risen significantly, Hart addressed the comments in an interview with Rolling Stone.

“I wouldn’t tell that joke today, because when I said it, the times weren’t as sensitive as they are now,” he said.

Too late fella, there’s no unringing that bell. What’s amusing is, generally speaking, the only people interested in LGBTQ rights are white people living in the developed world. I’m not sure American blacks were ever on board with homosexuality, hence their rap lyrics and Obama disavowing gay marriage until his second term in order not to upset black, church-going conservatives, yet progressives always seem surprised to discover this. And are Asians, and those people wandering over the border from Mexico, strong proponents of gay rights? Those Somalis in Minnesota? I doubt it.

So the organisers of the Oscars have signalled their non-racist credentials by hiring a black guy to host them, only to find he uttered 2018 wrongthink in 2011. They consulted with Twitter and found, under the ever-shifting rules of victimhood poker, his hand lost and he has to go. As contemporary culture becomes increasingly dominated by conflicting and overlapping tribes of lunatics each seeking to be more oppressed than the other, we’re going to see more of this. I confess, as a spectator sport it’s quite entertaining.

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For every action there’s a reaction

A couple of weeks back, in the context of a professor who’d been reprimanded over a lame joke in a lift which upset a vinegar-drinking feminist, I said this:

If this keeps up, segregated workplaces will look like an increasingly attractive proposition. At the very least, sensible men will avoid certain women at all costs – and certain companies.

A few days ago, several readers alerted me to this article:

Call it the Pence Effect, after U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, who has said he avoids dining alone with any woman other than his wife. In finance, the overarching impact can be, in essence, gender segregation.

Well, yes. As I’ve mentioned before, the logical solution to the alleged problem that women are routinely sexually harassed at work by men is segregation of the sexes. And if men are placed in a situation whereby they can have their livelihoods ruined by a mere allegation from a woman, this segregation will be self-imposed.

Now, more than a year into the #MeToo movement — with its devastating revelations of harassment and abuse in Hollywood, Silicon Valley and beyond — Wall Street risks becoming more of a boy’s club, rather than less of one.

So women demanded to work alongside men, then complained about how men behaved around them, and are now complaining men are avoiding them. I’m beginning to think there’s a grain of truth in some of those stereotypes.

“Women are grasping for ideas on how to deal with it, because it is affecting our careers,” said Karen Elinski, president of the Financial Women’s Association and a senior vice president at Wells Fargo & Co. “It’s a real loss.”

Having allowed the issue of women in the workplace to be hijacked by lunatic feminists bent on poisoning relations between the sexes, ordinary women are now finding their careers are suffering. Maybe they should have policed their own ranks a little better?

There’s a danger, too, for companies that fail to squash the isolating backlash and don’t take steps to have top managers be open about the issue and make it safe for everyone to discuss it, said Stephen Zweig, an employment attorney with FordHarrison.

“If men avoid working or traveling with women alone, or stop mentoring women for fear of being accused of sexual harassment,” he said, “those men are going to back out of a sexual harassment complaint and right into a sex discrimination complaint.”

For the SJWs pushing this insanity, this is a feature not a bug. Their aim is to hold arbitrary power over men such that, no matter what they do or don’t do, their lives can be destroyed.

For obvious reasons, few will talk openly about the issue. Privately, though, many of the men interviewed acknowledged they’re channeling Pence, saying how uneasy they are about being alone with female colleagues, particularly youthful or attractive ones, fearful of the rumor mill or of, as one put it, the potential liability.

Men aren’t stupid, and they will create strategies which enable them to politely go through the motions with female colleagues just enough to avoid a discrimination suit, but otherwise keep their distance. Men are very good at doing this with men they don’t like, so it won’t be too hard to do it with women. For example:

A manager in infrastructure investing said he won’t meet with female employees in rooms without windows anymore; he also keeps his distance in elevators. A late-40-something in private equity said he has a new rule, established on the advice of his wife, an attorney: no business dinner with a woman 35 or younger.

The changes can be subtle but insidious, with a woman, say, excluded from casual after-work drinks, leaving male colleagues to bond, or having what should be a private meeting with a boss with the door left wide open.

There are as many or more men who are responding in quite different ways. One, an investment adviser who manages about 100 employees, said he briefly reconsidered having one-on-one meetings with junior women. He thought about leaving his office door open, or inviting a third person into the room.

This amused, however:

Finally, he landed on the solution: “Just try not to be an asshole.”

That’s pretty much the bottom line, said Ron Biscardi, chief executive officer of Context Capital Partners. “It’s really not that hard.”

Oh, you think being nice is going to protect you? Sure, not being an asshole will stand you in good stead with 99% of female employees, but as the article says:

“Some men have voiced concerns to me that a false accusation is what they fear,” said Zweig, the lawyer. “These men fear what they cannot control.”

So they’ll take back control. Instead of having formal events the men will just meet for drinks independently, inviting a few like-minded chaps from other firms around to dispel any charge they’re at a works function.

In this charged environment, the question is how the response to #MeToo might actually end up hurting women’s progress. Given the male dominance in Wall Street’s top jobs, one of the most pressing consequences for women is the loss of male mentors who can help them climb the ladder.

Oh dear. It turns out a movement accusing men of sexual harassment en masse has some drawbacks. Who would have thought?

“Advancement typically requires that someone at a senior level knows your work, gives you opportunities and is willing to champion you within the firm. It’s hard for a relationship like that to develop if the senior person is unwilling to spend one-on-one time with a more junior person.”

I brought this up in my latest podcast. In practice, career progression is made by one-on-one brown-nosing, which is often harder for women to do than men for precisely the reason it may be misconstrued. The answer is to stop using this as a method of personal advancement.

Men have to step up, she said, and “not let fear be a barrier.”

That ship sailed so long ago it’s circumnavigated the globe and is nudging us in the back. Over to you, ladies.

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Hubris

This morning I came across this tweet:


Catherine Noone is an Irish senator and practicing solicitor. This tweet is a good example of something I find myself talking a lot about these days: hubris.

Tesco are an outfit at the end of an extraordinarily complex, technologically advanced, and finely-tuned supply chain which enables farm produce to be freshly available on supermarket shelves in city centres day after day with no interruptions. Looked at in isolation, the entire operation is nothing short of miraculous, an achievement of human endeavour which rivals the space programme.

But the metropolitan middle classes with social science, humanities, and law degrees think they’ve found something wrong with it. For some reason, the global experts in packaging, transport, storage, and retail operating on razor-thin margins have decided to use a few million tonnes of unnecessary plastic. Perhaps it was a decision made late on a Friday night when they all wanted to go to the pub, and never got around to revisiting it? Silly people! They spend millions on computer controlled warehouses, yet they can’t even get their packaging right.

I have the advantage over most of those wringing their hands over food packaging of having actually worked on a large vegetable farm, including a few days in the packing plant. The farm would come to life at about 5 or 6am, everyone would be in the fields picking by 7am, and by 1 or 2pm the first produce would be coming into the yard, some of which would go into the packing plant. Between 2 and 5pm several large lorries from the major supermarkets would pull in, get loaded up, and be off to the distribution centres from where the produce would be sent to all four corners of the UK, where it would appear on shelves at 7am the next morning. One thing I noticed, being a part-time forklift driver, was that clever packaging was essential for rapid loading and unloading. Everything needed to be packed in such a way it could be stacked on a pallet and put on a lorry with a forklift. We used to being loose veg in from the fields in small lorries or with a tractor and trailer, and it was a right pain. This is why we had a packing plant.

If you want just-in-time logistics, you need to pack things properly. Also, as mentioned in this post by someone who knows what they’re talking about, the plastic serves a vital function in keeping the produce fresh. I am sure it is also used to keep moisture and creepy-crawlies out in some instances. Now I don’t know the optimum packing methods to achieve all this, but I think it’s a reasonable assumption that those who have a billion dollars worth of skin in the game have worked it out. The idea that vegetable supply companies use “excess” packaging is so ludicrous only the seriously dim and neo-religious could believe it. And of course, if they removed the packaging there would be uproar about food waste. That campaigns against this imaginary problem have such support is indicative of several things, not least the increasing divide between those who work white-collar jobs in air-conditioned offices in large cities and those who actually make the country function.

In any conversation on this topic, you’ll inevitably get someone – usually a woman with a good salary, nice handbag, and plenty of shoes – smugly state that they buy their vegetables loose from the local organic shop and “they’re perfectly all right”. Which is true, but you’re not going to be able to feed cities of between 2 and 5 million people via small shops filled with bent, muddy, and cracked vegetables chucked in cardboard boxes. Well you could, but not while maintaining the standards of living everyone now demands. These people are the equivalent of the apocryphal American kids who don’t know milk comes from cows.

One of the paradoxes of the population becoming more educated is they seem to know less. The middle classes are increasingly backing trendy causes – gender equality, renewable energy, fuel taxes, carrier bag bans – without having the slightest idea how the world functions beyond their bubble. They’ve never been on a farm, toured a factory, walked through the turbine hall of a working power station, seen the spaghetti-like piping in a refinery, watched a giant crane lift something into place, or stood on a platform built in the middle of a hostile sea to provide the life-blood their society depends on. They don’t know how things are done and who does them. All they know is they’re doing it wrong and they know best. Like I said: hubris.

This won’t end well.

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Lost generations

The other day David Thompson wrote a post on an article in New York magazine featuring various women whose marriages have fallen apart and they’re blaming it on political differences with their spouses. But a perusal of the article and David’s commentary suggests perhaps these women are simply unsuited to long-term relationships, being as they are selfish, deluded, and insistent on making everything in their lives political. There’s also more than a hint of mental illness at work. Consider this from a woman in – you guessed it – Brooklyn:

I’ve been sexually assaulted and raped, but for a long time I didn’t identify in that way. I didn’t like the idea of seeing myself as a victim. It’s only recently, with the amount of coverage [sexual assault has been getting] that I’ve realized, Oh, if I verbally dissented, just because I didn’t fight someone off doesn’t mean I wasn’t assaulted and raped.

You didn’t realise you’d been sexually assaulted and raped until the definition was expanded a year ago by hardcore feminists to include any sexual encounter which is not supervised by two woke lawyers and a (female) high court judge. Now perhaps this woman was raped and assaulted in the traditional sense of the terms, but I rather think if this were the case she’d have realised it immediately, not at the advent of a political movement. And what’s the betting she knew and admired the guy who supposedly assaulted her? Oh, wait:

My husband and I have been together 14 years and I’ve mentioned it vaguely, but I’ve never given him details, partly because one of the guys is still in my life, and they’re kind of friends.

Her husband is “kind of friends” with a guy who raped her? Yeah, Trump’s really the issue here.

Recently we had some friends over for dinner, and we had an argument about whether this kind of trial by mob that’s happened in the press is unfair. My friends, a man and a woman, took the position that a man shouldn’t have his reputation ruined because of an allegation. I disagreed, and as the conversation kept going, I got upset.

There’s a school of thought, held by misogynistic dinosaurs, that women cannot handle robust debate and burst into tears when pressed on a difficult topic. There’s another which says emotionally unstable women make poor dinner party guests.

Finally I said that it’s obvious none of them had been sexually assaulted,

Ah yes, the Natalia Antonova approach to debating.

Later my husband told me he thought my intellectual points were good, but he didn’t respond to the emotional outburst I had.

I imagine he was deeply embarrassed.

But really, I wish he would feel like, Fuck those guysI want to punch them. How dare somebody treat the woman I love like this? I hate that happened to you. That’s what I’m looking for.

You want your husband to start punching dinner guests because they disagree with your view that men aren’t entitled to due process when accused of rape?

I mean, I wrote to the man who assaulted me, the one who’s still in our lives. He said he didn’t remember, and that it turned his stomach to think I’d been carrying around this thought about him, but he fell short of accepting responsibility.

As with so many of these cases, this woman needs psychological help. Instead she’s got pandering journalists from New York magazine.

Sticking with the topic at hand, here’s a letter to an agony aunt:

I feel like a ghost. I’m a 35-year-old woman, and I have nothing to show for it. My 20s and early 30s have been a twisting crisscross of moves all over the West Coast, a couple of brief stints abroad, multiple jobs in a mediocre role with no real upward track. I was also the poster child for serial monogamy. My most hopeful and longest lasting relationship (three and a half years, whoopee) ended two years ago. We moved to a new town (my fourth new city), created a home together, and then nose-dived into a traumatic breakup that launched me to my fifth and current city and who-knows-what-number job.

To be fair to this lady, she’s at least tried to settle down into a normal life. What I suspect is lacking is a serious investigation as to why her relationships have gone wrong, particularly those parts for which she’s responsible.

For all these years of quick changes and rash decisions, which I once rationalized as adventurous, exploratory, and living an “original life,” I have nothing to show for it.

If this describes the period in which she was in her successive relationships, it explains a lot.

I have no wealth, and I’m now saddled with enough debt from all of my moves, poor decisions, and lack of career drive that I may never be able to retire. I have no career milestones and don’t care for my line of work all that much anyway, but now it’s my lifeline, as I only have enough savings to buy a hotel room for two nights. I have no family nearby, no long-term relationship built on years of mutual growth and shared experiences, no children. While I make friends easily, I’ve left most of my friends behind in each city I’ve moved from while they’ve continued to grow deep roots: marriages, homeownership, career growth, community, families, children.

She at least understands she has a problem and, crucially, that her situation is a result of her own poor decisions. This puts her much further down the road to recovery than most women in her position. Now the advice she gets from the agony aunt us beyond useless, which is a shame because she still seems to be living in cloud-cuckoo land:

I used to consider myself creative — a good writer, poetic, passionate, curious. Now, after many years of demanding yet uninspiring jobs, multiple heartbreaks, move after move, financial woes, I’m quite frankly exhausted. I can barely remember to buy dish soap let alone contemplate humanity or be inspired by Anaïs Nin’s diaries.

Sorry, but this sounds like a middle-class whine that your dreams of becoming an artist never came to fruition, probably because of a dearth of talent and an unwillingness to knuckle down and learn a discipline. What this has to do with your relationship status isn’t clear, but my guess is living with anyone with this mindset would become tiresome very quickly.

The thought that pops into my mind increasingly often is that young women have been appallingly advised, and the horrific results of this are now being laid bare. The trouble is they are still being given the same advice, and many of them are listening. I’m sometimes accused of being misogynistic or sexist for what I write on here, or what I say in the classroom. Whenever my motivations are questioned I simply say I believe the advice being dished out to young women will leave them disappointed, bitter, and desperately unhappy later on in life. I’ve got nothing against women, indeed I’m rather  fond of them, and I’d much prefer to see them living happy, fulfilling lives. Unfortunately, they’re having their heads filled with third-wave feminist garbage by people who see them as expendable pawns in a never-ending political battle they can’t win. Even some women seem to be realising the damage the malign influence of modern feminism is causing:

I’m 50 years old with four college degrees. I was raised by a feminist mother with no father in the home. My mother told me get an education to the maximum level so that you can get out in the world, make a lot of money. And that’s the path I followed. I make adequate money. I don’t make a ton of money. But I do make enough to support my own household.

I want to tell women in their 20s: Do not follow the path that I followed. You are leading yourself to a life of loneliness. All of your friends will be getting married and having children, and you’re working to compete in the world, and what you’re doing is competing with men. Men don’t like competitors. Men want a partner. It took me until my late 40s to realize this.

And by the time you have your own household with all your own bills, you can’t get off that track, because now you’ve got to make the money to pay your bills. It’s hard to find a partner in your late 40s to date because you also start losing self-confidence about your looks, your body. It’s not the same as it was in your 20s. You try to do what you can to make your life fulfilling. I have cats and dogs. But it’s lonely when you see your friends having children, going on vacations, planning the lives of their children, and you don’t do anything at night but come home to your cats and dogs. I don’t want other women to do what I have done.

The crucial line?

Men don’t like competitors. Men want a partner.

The sooner young women understand this, and learn to balance their careers with their long-term life goals, the better.

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Cult leaders wanted

Yesterday, during a lecture, I was shown this video:

 

I’ll not ask my readers to watch the whole thing, but the gist of it is that people should change the world by uniting with small groups of like-minded people under whoever steps up to lead the way on that particular issue. The point is, you don’t need to create a demand for a movement, it’s already there; it just needs someone to lead it. Incidentally, the video dates from 2009 so it was rather prescient as far as Donald Trump’s election is concerned.

What I took away from it was that, in an age of increasing secularism, people are flocking to those who can give them the spiritual satisfaction they used to get in church. I’ve mentioned before that people don’t really get more secular, they just shift their faith onto something else; just because they don’t worship at the altar of a regular religion, it doesn’t make them non-believers. A few years ago I read John Krakauer’s Under the Banner of Heaven, which includes a history of Mormonism. Its founder Joseph Smith was a teenager during a period called the Second Great Awakening:

The Second Great Awakening was a Protestant religious revival during the early 19th century in the United States.

The revivals enrolled millions of new members in existing evangelical denominations and led to the formation of new denominations. Many converts believed that the Awakening heralded a new millennial age.

A combination of economic and social changes had caused many people to grow disillusioned with the traditional denominations, leading to hundreds of sects popping up headed by all manner of chancers promising salvation. Joseph Smith was physically imposing and staggeringly charismatic, and so it was his particular cult that grew into an established religion while most of the others died out. I was reminded of the clamour of the masses to worship something, anything, during the Second Great Awakening when I watched this video. In the 9 years since it was made, I think the clamour has only grown louder.

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Have you tried being nicer?

Once again I’m going to write about an individual, not so much to lay the boot into him but because he represents a wider phenomenon. A few weeks ago I wrote about a tweet from one Daniel Sugarman, a journalist at the Jewish Chronicle, in which he stood on the still-warm bodies of his murdered co-religionists in order to virtue-signal about Trump. Here’s the tweet in question:


Now here’s a tweet he posted yesterday:


This chap is in his twenties and while he might (for all I know) be a good journalist, there is something not quite right about a grown man who clamours for attention as if he were a teenager on Instagram. The problem is he’s not alone. So many prominent journalists and political commentators spend a good portion of their time signalling to the in-group, which usually takes the form of being rather unpleasant about somebody else. Then five minutes later they’re broadcasting to the world they’re unhappy, inviting people to say nice things about them. Natalia Antonova, Laurie Penny, and Oliver Kamm are three examples of prominent commentators who delight in making vicious, denigrating remarks about people in the process of virtue-signalling, while simultaneously using their platforms to bleat about how awfully they’ve been treated, or how unhappy and depressed they are. Cue a chorus of ultra-supportive comments – which is the entire point of course.

This is not the behaviour of functioning adults. I suspect there have always been people who act like this, but these days such behaviour gets rewarded. Indeed, it almost seems to be a requirement in what passes for modern journalism. It’s amusing that these people believe they hold the blueprint for society’s future; it’s less amusing that people actually listen to them.

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Contempt breeds contempt

Over the weekend a couple of readers alerted me to a video that was doing the rounds on Twitter of what looked like a couple of diminutive British police officers patrolling downtown Mogadishu. Inevitably for that part of the world, a bunch of hooded thugs gave the two – a man and a woman – a good thrashing. I later learned that the incident happened in London and the tweet had been deleted. Now we have Plod bleating:

Violent suspects could be released by police if officers do not get “backed up” by members of the public, a federation leader has warned.

Given the British government invites violent thugs from abroad to live among us and the justice system ensures they are free to continue being violent thugs in perpetuity, I feel ordinary folk are entitled to ask what, exactly, will change.

Ken Marsh spoke out after a video of officers being attacked was shared widely on social media.

Several cars can be seen driving past the encounter without stopping.

Met Police Federation chairman Mr Marsh said: “We don’t come to work to get assaulted, and if we’re not going to be backed up…then what is the point?”

What is the point, you say? Funny, I’ve been asking that question for quite some time now. And I love how the police have spent years elevating themselves to special status whereby only they can have weapons, only they can protect you, only they can do X, Y, and Z and ordinary people “must not take the law into their hands” but instead wait for Plod to show up three days later. Yet here they are whining that they don’t want to  come to work if the public won’t join them in hand-to-hand combat with a bunch of feral thugs the very same police forces won’t let us criticise.

However, Mr Marsh added this did not mean he was asking members of the public “to suddenly jump in to assist police officers, because we are highly trained in what we do”.

Yes, your high-level of training is apparent in the video. Oddly, forty-three hours of diversity training followed by a week-long seminar on unconscious racial biases didn’t adequately prepare these two officers for encountering actual diversity and vibrancy on the streets. That aside, what do you want the public to do, other than meekly go to jail where you can keep an eye on wrongthinkers more easily?

A member of the public wearing a motorcycle helmet helped the male officer, but several cars went past without stopping.

So drivers navigating city streets are supposed to be able to asses whether they should stop and intervene in an ongoing ruck they happen to drive by? What idiocy is this? And even if they did realise what was going on, as I said before, why risk it? The potential downsides vastly outweigh any upsides, even if the police were deserving of the public’s support.

Talking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Marsh said: “If the public now think it’s OK to stand and film and mock my colleagues…then we are in very dangerous grounds.

“What I’m trying to get across is the simple fact that society has changed so much lately that it seems to be OK [to be] more interested in mocking us and filming us.”

Sorry, what did you expect? You’ve made it abundantly clear you’re not on the public’s side, so why should they hold you in anything other than the same contempt you have for them? You were warned, time and again, that this would happen and what did your colleagues do? Go ultra-defensive, engage in self-gratifying circle-jerks, and threaten anyone who doesn’t kow-tow to you. You’ve brought this on yourselves.

He added: “We’re going to come to a point where we’re going to start pushing messages out to our colleagues: ‘Risk-assess it dynamically and, if you think you can’t detain a person, just let them go’.”

If the public doesn’t hold you in higher regard, you’ll carry out yet more risk assessments leading you to shirk your responsibilities? Yes, that’ll help turn things around.

A former Met officer, who left the force in 2014, said officers were attacked on a daily basis.

By people who, if criticised on social media, can look forward to the sight of their detractors being arrested by the Met for hate speech. Perhaps you ought to work out whose side you’re on?

Assistant commissioner Steve House of the Met Police said: “Whilst officers should never expect to be attacked as part of their job, a core part of officer safety training is ensuring they know how to respond to volatile situations.

Which is rather hard to do if diversity and inclusion are the driving factors in police recruitment and retention.

“This training is substantial and delivered in accordance with national guidelines and we regularly review it to make sure it is fit for purpose.

Then please explain the scenes in the video.

“Officers are also issued with personal protective equipment to help protect them and the public.

And if they don’t have them, they’ll stay in the car and watch their subordinate get murdered. Yes, we know.

We’re going to see a lot more of this, as we are of this:

Hundreds of residents have formed a ‘vigilante’ neighbourhood watch group following a failed campaign to increase the number of police officers on the streets.

The community watchdog group, known as ‘We Stand Determined’, stage twice-weekly patrols across Birmingham since it was set up on social media three weeks ago.

Members say they are working together to report any dangers the community may face across Britain’s second largest city amid fears crime is spiralling out of control.

Three organisers, only known as Wayne, Tracy and Michael, said they founded the group after discovering a friend had been attacked in his home by thieves armed with hammers.

A corrupt, dysfunctional, politicised police force who treat the public with contempt leading to vigilante groups forming in order to stop ordinary people being attacked with hammers. Britain is turning third world under our very noses.

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