William Labov, Professor of Linguistics at University of Pennsylvania and author of Dialect Diversity in America, joins David to discuss the various and changing dialects and accents spoken in American English, and the political and economic factors in those dialects.
Washington’s KING-TV reports that a portion of a tunnel that transports trains carrying radioactive material collapsed early on Tuesday morning, with officials warning workers at the facility to take emergency precautions.
A reporter for the station said the tunnel that collapsed is connected to the facility’s uranium extraction plant. Read the rest of this entry »
Feminist author and Northwestern University professor Laura Kipnis wrote the recently released book, Unwanted Advances: Sexual Paranoia Comes to Campus, which details the insanity of regulating sex on college campuses with administrative tribunals and sexual conduct codes.
“The rules and the codes [on campuses] have been rewritten behind closed doors such that almost all sex can be charged as something criminal,” says feminist author and Northwestern University film professor Laura Kipnis. “It reinforces a traditional femininity that sees women as needing protection, sees women’s sexuality as something that is endangering to them.”
Kipnis’ new book is Unwanted Advances: Sexual Paranoia Comes to Campus, which explores the insanity of sexual conduct codes and attitudes at American universities. It grew out of Kipnis’ own experience of being investigated under Title IX of the Education Amendments Act at Northwestern for a 2015 essay she published in The Chronicle of Higher Education. Read the rest of this entry »
The ‘Right’ to Health Care.
There isn’t one.
Kevin D. Williamson writes: With the American Health Care Act dominating the week’s news, one conversation has been unavoidable: Someone — someone who pays attention to public policy — will suggest that we pursue policy x, y, or z, and someone else — someone who pays a little less careful attention, who probably watches a lot of cable-television entertainment masquerading as news — responds: “The first thing we have to do is acknowledge that health care is a human right!” What follows is a moment during which the second speaker visibly luxuriates in his display of empathy and virtue, which is, of course, the point of the exercise.
It’s kind of gross, but that’s where we are, politically, as a country.
Here is a thought experiment: You have four children and three apples. You would like for everyone to have his own apple. You go to Congress, and you successfully persuade the House and the Senate to endorse a joint resolution declaring that everyone has a right to an apple of his own. A ticker-tape parade is held in your honor, and you share your story with Oprah, after which you are invited to address the United Nations, which passes the International Convention on the Rights of These Four Kids in Particular to an Individual Apple Each. You are visited by the souls of Mohandas Gandhi and Mother Teresa, who beam down approvingly from a joint Hindu-Catholic cloud in Heaven.
Question: How many apples do you have?
You have three apples, dummy. Three. You have four children. Each of those children has a congressionally endorsed, U.N.-approved, saint-ratified right to an apple of his own. But here’s the thing: You have three apples and four children. Nothing has changed.
Declaring a right in a scarce good is meaningless. It is a rhetorical gesture without any application to the events and conundrums of the real world. If the Dalai Lama were to lead 10,000 bodhisattvas in meditation, and the subject of that meditation was the human right to health care, it would do less good for the cause of actually providing people with health care than the lowliest temp at Merck does before his second cup of coffee on any given Tuesday morning. Read the rest of this entry »
Are e-cigarettes a safe alternative to cigarettes? Could they help millions of smokers quit smoking? If so, why would anti-tobacco activists oppose e-cigarettes? Get the truth about e-cigarettes in this short video.
TMZ reports that the adult film star was dropped underwater in a shark cage wearing nothing but a white swimsuit. Cavalli’s presence in the water apparently attracted a ten-foot lemon shark.In a video which can be seen below, the actress panics as the shark attacks her and can be seen moments later holding her bleeding ankle. An image posted by TMZ shows the actress sustained a gruesome gash … (read more)
25 Molotov Cocktail-Throwing Crackpot Criminal Leftist Goons Arrested After Portland May Day March Turns into RiotPosted: May 2, 2017 | |
PORTLAND, Ore. — What began as a peaceful march for labor rights on May Day in Portland turned violent as a group of self-described anarchists threw objects at officers and officers fired non-lethal weapons back. Police canceled the permitted march and deemed it a riot as tensions escalated.
“Various fires were set in the street and in garbage cans, a police car was spray-painted and vandalized, and there were attempts to set at least one business on fire.”
Portland police arrested 25 protesters, on charges ranging from arson to assault, criminal mischief and theft. All 25 suspects were cited for failing to obey a peace officer, and police said the arrests will be reviewed for additional charges.
Three minors, ages 17, 14, and 17, were among those arrested (full list of names and charges below). All three were charged with riot and released to their parents.
Rallies began at noon and a march started at about 3 p.m. Portland police reported members of an anarchist group threw rocks, smoke bombs, a full Pepsi can and other objects at police officers at about 4:10 p.m.
The Pepsi can struck a Portland Fire and Rescue paramedic, police said.
Police first said protesters with children should leave the march, then told everyone to disperse.
At 4:30 p.m. police said the permitted march was canceled as it was an “unlawful march” based on the violence. Police said anyone in the roadway was subject to arrest.
“Various fires were set in the street and in garbage cans, a police car was spray-painted and vandalized, and there were attempts to set at least one business on fire,” said a news release from Portland police late Monday night. Read the rest of this entry »
And other fun notes from the world’s largest gathering of psychedelic researchers.
Mike Riggs reports: The world’s leading researchers of psychedelic drugs met in Oakland, Calif., this past weekend at Psychedelic Science 2017, sponsored by the Multidisciplinary Association of Psychedelic Science (MAPS). I attended for for a story I’m working on about MDMA-assisted therapy, and thought I’d share some items from my notebook.
Why do LSD trips last so long? Psilocybin and MDMA are both active in the body for two to three hours when administered in tens of milligrams. LSD, meanwhile, is administered in micrograms (1 mcg is .001 mg) and yet the drug experience can exceed eight hours.
UNC-Chapel Hill‘s Dave Nichols, a medicinal chemist who’s been studying psychedelics for decades, shared some new research that explains why. Imagine a carnivorous pitcher plant. That’s the 5-HT2B serotonin receptor. Lysergic acid diethylamide, LSD, is a fly. Instead of attaching to the top of the receptor, the LSD molecule gets pulled inside and the top of the receptor closes around it. Basically, LSD trips last forever because the drug gets trapped in a brain cage. (Nichols’ team published their findings in January. You can read more about them here.)
What happens when you inject psilocybin? The psilocybin-assisted therapy study conducted by Johns Hopkins University—which found that moderate and high doses of psilocybin, in conjunction with psychotherapy, reduced anxiety and depression in cancer patients–used gel caps as the method of administration.
Most recreational users just eat the mushrooms or brew them into tea. Over in Europe, however, researchers have experimented with intravenous administration. Apparently, it’s like “rocketing [someone] out of a cannon”; the come-up takes place over roughly a minute, rather than half an hour. Well, duh. Except, at a Q&A later in the day, Nichols revealed LSD doesn’t work any quicker when administered via IV. It truly is the Good Friday mass of psychedelic drugs. Read the rest of this entry »
Over the last couple of days, I’ve seen a number of people sharing clips from episode 9 of Bill Nye’s new Netflix show, Bill Nye Saves the World. The videos in question were of two segments of the show. In the first, Rachel Bloom of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend sings and raps rather discordantly about not ‘boxing in’ her ‘sex junk’. She tells people to get off their ‘soapbox’, declaring ‘sex how you want: it’s your goddamn right!’
In the other video from the show, much the same message—that there are ‘lots of flavours to sexuality’—is communicated using anthropomorphized ice creams. Vanilla starts a group for ice cream conversion therapy, declaring that, as vanilla, he feels that he is ‘the most natural of the ice creams’ and that to ‘get right with the big ice cream in the sky,’ the others should change their flavour by wishing to be vanilla. The…
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NYT Tiptoes Around Feelings Of People Who Mutilate Little Girls.
Amber Randall reports: Worried the term “female genital mutilation” might sharpen the divide between those who oppose brutally cutting away a little girl’s genitalia to deprive her of sexual pleasure and those who practice the “rite,” one New York Times editor instead refers to the ritual as “genital cutting.”
“There’s a gulf between the Western (and some African) advocates who campaign against the practice and the people who follow the rite, and I felt the language used widened that chasm,” NYT science and health editor Celia Dugger explained Friday. She also said the widely used term (FGM) is “culturally loaded” in the explanation, which came as a result of inquiries from The Daily Caller News Foundation regarding a reporter’s decision to use the term “cutting” in a recent story about a doctor in Michigan.
The doctor was allegedly caught mutilating innocent little girls as young as six and charged with a felony. Performed in American culture and subject to American laws, female genital mutilation carries a sentence of up to five years.
A social thinker illuminates his country’s populist divide.
Christopher Caldwell is a senior editor at The Weekly Standard and the author of Reflections on the Revolution In Europe: Immigration, Islam, and the West.
Christopher Caldwell writes: The real-estate market in any sophisticated city reflects deep aspirations and fears. If you had a feel for its ups and downs—if you understood, say, why young parents were picking this neighborhood and drunks wound up relegated to that one—you could make a killing in property, but you also might be able to pronounce on how society was evolving more generally. In 2016, a real-estate developer even sought—and won—the presidency of the United States.
In France, a real-estate expert has done something almost as improbable. Christophe Guilluy calls himself a geographer. But he has spent decades as a housing consultant in various rapidly changing neighborhoods north of Paris, studying gentrification, among other things. And he has crafted a convincing narrative tying together France’s various social problems—immigration tensions, inequality, deindustrialization, economic decline, ethnic conflict, and the rise of populist parties. Such an analysis had previously eluded the Parisian caste of philosophers, political scientists, literary journalists, government-funded researchers, and party ideologues.
“The young men living in the northern Paris suburbs feel a burning solidarity with their Muslim brethren in the Middle East.”
Guilluy is none of these. Yet in a French political system that is as polarized as the American, both the outgoing Socialist president François Hollande and his Gaullist predecessor Nicolas Sarkozy sought his counsel. Marine Le Pen, whose National Front dismisses both major parties as part of a corrupt establishment, is equally enthusiastic about his work. Guilluy has published three books, as yet untranslated, since 2010, with the newest, Le crépuscule de la France d’en haut (roughly: “The Twilight of the French Elite”), arriving in bookstores last fall. The volumes focus closely on French circumstances, institutions, and laws, so they might not be translated anytime soon. But they give the best ground-level look available at the economic, residential, and democratic consequences of globalization in France. They also give an explanation for the rise of the National Front that goes beyond the usual imputation of stupidity or bigotry to its voters. Guilluy’s work thus tells us something important about British voters’ decision to withdraw from the European Union and the astonishing rise of Donald Trump—two phenomena that have drawn on similar grievances.
At the heart of Guilluy’s inquiry is globalization. Internationalizing the division of labor has brought significant economic efficiencies. But it has also brought inequalities unseen for a century, demographic upheaval, and cultural disruption. Now we face the question of what—if anything—we should do about it.
A process that Guilluy calls métropolisation has cut French society in two. In 16 dynamic urban areas (Paris, Lyon, Marseille, Aix-en-Provence, Toulouse, Lille, Bordeaux, Nice, Nantes, Strasbourg, Grenoble, Rennes, Rouen, Toulon, Douai-Lens, and Montpellier), the world’s resources have proved a profitable complement to those found in France. These urban areas are home to all the country’s educational and financial institutions, as well as almost all its corporations and the many well-paying jobs that go with them. Here, too, are the individuals—the entrepreneurs and engineers and CEOs, the fashion designers and models, the film directors and chefs and other “symbolic analysts,” as Robert Reich once called them—who shape the country’s tastes, form its opinions, and renew its prestige. Cheap labor, tariff-free consumer goods, and new markets of billions of people have made globalization a windfall for such prosperous places. But globalization has had no such galvanizing effect on the rest of France. Cities that were lively for hundreds of years—Tarbes, Agen, Albi, Béziers—are now, to use Guilluy’s word, “desertified,” haunted by the empty storefronts and blighted downtowns that Rust Belt Americans know well.
Guilluy doubts that anyplace exists in France’s new economy for working people as we’ve traditionally understood them. Paris offers the most striking case. As it has prospered, the City of Light has stratified, resembling, in this regard, London or American cities such as New York and San Francisco. It’s a place for millionaires, immigrants, tourists, and the young, with no room for the median Frenchman. Paris now drives out the people once thought of as synonymous with the city.
Yet economic opportunities for those unable to prosper in Paris are lacking elsewhere in France. Journalists and politicians assume that the stratification of France’s flourishing metropoles results from a glitch in the workings of globalization. Somehow, the rich parts of France have failed to impart their magical formula to the poor ones. Fixing the problem, at least for certain politicians and policy experts, involves coming up with a clever shortcut: perhaps, say, if Romorantin had free wireless, its citizens would soon find themselves wealthy, too. Guilluy disagrees. For him, there’s no reason to expect that Paris (and France’s other dynamic spots) will generate a new middle class or to assume that broad-based prosperity will develop elsewhere in the country (which happens to be where the majority of the population live). If he is right, we can understand why every major Western country has seen the rise of political movements taking aim at the present system. Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] Human Rights Activist & Author Ayaan Hirsi Ali: A Lot Of Work To Do In Stopping Genital MutilationPosted: April 20, 2017 | |
Human rights activist and author Ayaan Hirsi Ali sounds off on the horrific practice of human female genital mutilation, sacrifices made on the ‘altar of identity politics’ and the prosecution of a case in Detroit.
(CNSNews.com) – Four decades ago, in the mid-1970s, young American adults–in the 18-to-34 age bracket–were far more likely to be married and living with a spouse than living in their parents’ home.
But that is no longer the case, according to a new study by the U.S. Census Bureau.
“There are now more young people living with their parents than in any other arrangement,” says the Census Bureau study.
“What is more,” says the study, “almost 9 in 10 young people who were living in their parents’ home a year ago are still living there today, making it the most stable living arrangement.”
The Number 1 living arrangement today for Americans in the 18-to-34 age bracket, according to the Census Bureau, is to reside without a spouse in their parents’ home.
That is where you can now find 22.9 million 18-to-34 year olds—compared to the 19.9 million who are married and live with their spouse.
In 1975, according to Census Bureau data, 31.9 million Americans in the 18-to-34 age bracket were married and lived with their spouse.
Back then, this was the most common living arrangement for that age bracket. Read the rest of this entry »
Frankfurt School Zombie Apocalypse: Students Demand Administrators ‘Take Action’ Against Conservative JournalistsPosted: April 17, 2017 | |
Truth is a ‘Myth’, and a “White Supremacist Concept’.
Matthew Reade reports: In an open letter to outgoing Pomona College President David Oxtoby, a group of students from the Claremont Colleges assail the president for affirming Pomona’s commitment to free speech and demand that all five colleges “take action” against the conservative journalists on the staff of the Claremont Independent.
“Historically, white supremacy has venerated the idea of objectivity, and wielded a dichotomy of ‘subjectivity vs. objectivity’ as a means of silencing oppressed peoples … The idea that there is a single truth–‘the Truth’–is a construct of the Euro-West that is deeply rooted in the Enlightenment … “
The letter, written by three self-identified Black students at Pomona College, is a response to an April 7 email from President Oxtoby in which he reiterated the college’s commitment to “the exercise of free speech and academic freedom” in the aftermath of protests that shut down a scheduled appearance by an invited speaker, scholar and Black Lives Matter critic Heather Mac Donald, on April 6.
“Heather Mac Donald is a fascist, a white supremacist, a warhawk, a transphobe, a queerphobe, a classist, and ignorant of interlocking systems of domination that produce the lethal conditions under which oppressed peoples are forced to live.”
“Protest has a legitimate and celebrated place on college campuses,” Oxtoby wrote. “What we cannot support is the act of preventing others from engaging with an invited speaker. Our mission is founded upon the discovery of truth, the collaborative development of knowledge and the betterment of society.”
In their open letter, the students sharply disagree.
“Free speech, a right many freedom movements have fought for, has recently become a tool appropriated by hegemonic institutions. It has not just empowered students from marginalized backgrounds to voice their qualms and criticize aspects of the institution, but it has given those who seek to perpetuate systems of domination a platform to project their bigotry,” they write.
“Thus, if ‘our mission is founded upon the discovery of truth,’” the students continue, citing Oxtoby’s letter, “how does free speech uphold that value?”
The students also characterize truth as a “myth” and a white supremacist concept. Read the rest of this entry »
BOTHELL, WA—According to reports, local 22-year-old Chloe Kowalski’s world was torn apart Friday morning, as the millennial barista was diagnosed with a rare disease that prevents her from having the ability to even. “I just—I can’t even,” Kowalski reportedly sobbed on her boyfriend’s shoulder after the appointment with her regular doctor, which she had scheduled […]
Source: The Babylon Bee
[VIDEO] CHINAMAGEDDON: How That United Airlines Video Ignited Full-Scale Global Panic Fake Outrage in ChinaPosted: April 11, 2017 | |
A camp housing 1,500 migrants in northern France has been destroyed in a fire that officials said began during a fight between Afghans and Kurds.
At least 10 people were injured when the fire tore through closely-packed huts at the Grande-Synthe camp, near the port of Dunkirk.
Last month officials said the camp would be dismantled because of unrest.
The French north coast has been a magnet for migrants trying to reach Britain.
“There is nothing left but a heap of ashes,” said Michel Lalande, prefect of France’s Nord region.
“It will be impossible to put the huts back where they were before,” he added.
The population of the Grande-Synthe camp has grown since last October’s destruction of the “Jungle” camp near Calais, about 40 km (25 miles) away.
The arrival of more Afghans increased tensions with Kurds living in the camp, AFP news agency reports, citing witnesses and officials. Read the rest of this entry »
People aren’t rejecting truth – they’re rejecting the values of the elites.
Frank Furedi writes: When political commentators talk of the emergence of a post-truth world, they are really lamenting the end of an era when the truths promoted by the institutions of the state and media were rarely challenged. It’s a lament that’s been coming for a few years now. Each revolt of sections of the public against the values of the elites has been met with the riposte that people are no longer interested in the truth. What the elites really mean is that people don’t care about their version of the truth. So when the French celebrity philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy asserted that people have ‘lost interest in whether politicians tell the truth’, he was venting his frustration at an electorate that no longer shares his values.
Today’s elite angst about so-called post-fact or post-truth public discourse is but the latest version of an historical struggle – a struggle over the question of who possesses moral and intellectual authority. Indeed, the rejection of the values and outlook of the holders of cultural power in many Western societies has long been portrayed as a rejection of truth itself. The reason elite values have been enshrined as ‘the truth’, right from the Ancient Greeks onwards, is because the rulers of society need to secure the deference of the masses. The masses are being encouraged to defer not to the power of the elites, but to the truth of elite values.
That this is not widely understood is due to contemporary society’s reluctance to acknowledge that cultural and political life still relies on the deference of the public – passive or active – to the values and moral authority of the elites. The term ‘deference’ – ‘submission to the acknowledged superior claims, skill, judgement or other qualities of another’, as the OED defines it – suggests a non-coercive act of obedience to authority. Hence it was frequently coupled with terms such as instinct, custom and habit (1). In the 19th century, it was frequently used to imply people’s willingness to accept and bow down before the elites on the basis of their superior wisdom. Deference presumed the intellectual and moral hegemony of the educated middle class, or cultural elite, over the wider public.
In recent decades it has been suggested that the era of deference is over. We are told that people are far too critical to defer to the superior wisdom of others. In this context, the idea of deference has acquired negative connotations, and is often identified with uncritical thinking. However, in practice, deference is still demanded by elites. But it is demanded in the form of calls to respect the authority of the expert, because he speaks the truth. So, in almost every domain of human experience, the expert is presented as the producer not just of facts, but also of the truth. Those who fail to defer to experts risk being denounced as irrational, superstitious or just plain stupid. Read the rest of this entry »
Could a single-payer, government-run health care system work in the United States? We already know the answer, because America already has single-payer, government-run health care. Author and commentator Pete Hegseth explains.
Julia Marsh reports: The city’s bad-apple teachers have a surprising new ally these days — Manhattan judges.
The jurists are increasingly refusing to side with city education bigs to punish rogue educators fired for drug- and sex-related offenses, according to a review of recent cases by The Post.
At the heart of the troubling trend is a legal standard that requires the courts to defer to the city’s Department of Education when it terminates a teacher — unless the judge believes that the firing “shocks the conscience,” experts said.
Given the growing number of overturned punishments, it is clear that the “shock” threshold is “getting easier and easier to meet,’’ a court source noted.
Some legal observers insist that the judges aren’t to blame, arguing that it is really the fault of city education officials for leveling overly harsh punishments against bad teachers in the first place because they don’t want to be criticized in the press.
But disgusted education advocates aren’t buying it.
“We worry about the quality of our classrooms, the quality of education we’re providing our children.
“But the legal system seems bent on protecting the rights of teachers to extraordinary degrees and leaves the students vulnerable.”
The controversial “conscience’’ standard has been around since the 1970s, when it was established by the state’s highest court.
The Court of Appeals wrote in Pell v. Board of Education that judges should typically defer to education officials because they are ultimately responsible for their 77,000 employees.
For decades, the ruling meant that judges rarely second-guessed DOE arbitrators’ disciplinary rulings. But experts, citing several overturned high-profile cases in recent years, say that way of thinking is rapidly changing.
For example, trial and appeals courts alike found it “shocking” that a Brooklyn high school teacher was canned for bringing heroin to court in a backpack.
The courts also were “shocked’’ at the firing of two female romance-language teachers over a topless tryst in a classroom.
Last month, the city was forced to appeal a court ruling that sent a Queens elementary school teacher back into the classroom even after she flunked three of her four previous performance ratings. Read the rest of this entry »
U.S. to Deport Zhang Xiaoyuan, the ‘Dirty Minded’ Arizona State University Student Caught Recording Women in RestroomPosted: April 8, 2017 | |
Zhang Xiaoyuan was apprehended and forced him to hand over his phone by two women who caught him coming out of a female bathroom on Arizona campus.
A foreign Arizona State University student who was caught last year taking surreptitious videos of women using the bathroom now faces deportation to China, according to US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
“According to a probable cause statement, Zhang had not been able to find the men’s room in the building and decided to use the women’s restroom instead.“
Zhang Xiaoyuan, 22, was convicted in January on felony voyeurism charges, according to court records. The Chinese national was in the United States on a student visa and enrolled as an undergraduate communications student at ASU, a university spokeswoman confirmed.
“While in the center stall, he used his phone to record video of the women because he had a ‘dirty mind,’ Zhang later told a police officer who conducted a more detailed interview in Putonghua at the station.”
After Zhang’s conviction, a federal immigration judge determined the Chinese national “no longer has a legal basis to remain in the US,” ICE spokeswoman Yasmeen Pitts O’Keefe said in a statement. “Accordingly, ICE is now making preparations to repatriate Mr Zhang to his native country.”
“He was charged with six counts of unlawful viewing, taping and recording of persons, records showed. Because Zhang was a Chinese national, police also placed him on a federal immigration hold.”
Zhang was apprehended inside a lecture hall on ASU’s Tempe campus on the night of September 26, after two women observed him emerging from the women’s restroom and suspected he had taken video and photographs of them while inside, according to police records obtained by KTVK News.
The women detained Zhang and took his phone away from him so he couldn’t delete anything, police records said. When officers arrived, Zhang gave consent to search his phone; the two women watched videos recorded on the phone and were able to identify victims, records stated.
According to a probable cause statement, Zhang had not been able to find the men’s room in the building and decided to use the women’s restroom instead. While in the center stall, he used his phone to record video of the women because he had a “dirty mind,” Zhang later told a police officer who conducted a more detailed interview in Putonghua at the station. Read the rest of this entry »