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Here’s the video of the Al Jazeera English show featuring Helen Lewis and Rebecca Watson, among others, and me.

It’s  pretty good show. Most of the discussion involves social media researcher and Fordham professor Alice Marwick and Helen Lewis of the New Statesman. Those of us in the Google+ Hangout pop in briefly with comments and questions.

FWIW, I appear only briefly in the show proper, but I have a somewhat longer (and a bit more coherent) comment in the ten minute “online only” portion that immediately follows the show (and which is also on this video).

It was a somewhat strange, if educational, experience, my first appearance on TV. (The next time I get webcammed into a show, I won’t reflexively look down at the laptop while talking.) It all went by really, really quickly. Weirdly frantic behind the scenes as the producer tried to slot us all in.

The comments on the video on YouTube nicely  illustrate the problem we were discussing; that is, they are a rancid pile of misogynistic shitlordery.

My favorite comment is this one from Urhoboman5 about Rebecca Watson:

At 5;30 that chick has a youtube channel. Just type in rebecca feminist and you’ll find it. Interesting how most of her videos are voted down. Sometimes as much as 80% negative because the stuff she says is pure nonsense.

That’s right. He actually thinks that the fact that her videos are targeted by downvote squads proves that she’s wrong to talk about harassment. She’s harassed by dudes who don’t like her talking about harassment so therefore it’s “nonsense” for her to talk about harassment. Brilliant.

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Rutee Katreya
8 years ago

It is pretty funny that he still thinks “Jester’s fool” is clever.

More to the point, it’s entirely unsurprising that he feels that the West is to trumpet its horn over accomplishments only possible through colonizing native peoples. Technological developments need money (both in infrastructural developments and in actual capital) more than any mythical traits ‘Western Civilization’ possesses. The West was very good at stealing resources from others, so I guess the rest of the world should be robbers too?

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

Excuse me, but wouldn’t a “jester’s fool” be awesome? I mean if someone was called an “actor’s actor” or a “singer’s singer” or – dare I say? – a “writer’s writer”, it would mean that person was considered a talent amongst talents; well regarded and influential in their field.

So basically “jester’s fool” means “talented comedian.” Is that better or worse than a semi-successful business guy, I wonder?

Myoo
Myoo
8 years ago

When I see “jester’s fool”, it just makes me think of a Jester that’s not very good at their job. Like, every other Jester is there unicycling and the jester’s foll rolls in on a bicycle.

Myoo
Myoo
8 years ago

the foll rolls in, *sigh*. The fool rolls in.

Ugh
Ugh
8 years ago

The West, and more specifically Europe, are and pretty much have always been the technological innovators.

LOL!

Things that gave rise to the modern world, not invented in Europe (incomplete list):

Writing
Paper
The Printing Press
Inoculations
Quarantines
Surgery
Antiseptic
The Compass
Navigational Math
Algebra
Gunpowder and guns

Even the industrial revolution only happened after the British government took Adam Smith’s recommendation to copy China’s mass transport system.

Seriously, have you ever read a history book? In your entire life?

Did an evil teacher tell you men can’t read history books?

Ugh
Ugh
8 years ago

Also, you know, iron, bronze, steel, and all major food crops.

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

Yeah, but we invented the sandwich press.

Ugh
Ugh
8 years ago

But, Sir, when you come right down to it, aren’t sandwiches just primitive, degenerate Shawarma wraps?

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

I… but… you see…

Okay, fine. How about the Blues? I bet we invented the fuck out of that that!

Ugh
Ugh
8 years ago

lol

BlackBloc (@XBlackBlocX)

The West, and more specifically Europe, are and pretty much have always been the technological innovators.

And by ‘always’ you mean “starting around the industrial revolution”, since before then Europe was a gigantic barbaric backwaters to ‘real’ civilization, whose centers revolved around the Mid East.

Democracy sprang primarily out of the West.

It’s funny how Greece is “the West” when it’s convenient for Western Civilization Uber Alles types and “some Mediteranean Third World shit country” when it’s not… like when it comes to describing its current socio-economic conditions.

By all account most of the democratic reforms in North America were inspired by the Iroquois League. Free market ideology was mostly born in the Mid East (a lot of Smith’s argumentation in Wealth of Nations seems inspired greatly from Islamic texts he probably was aware of). I’m not even going into how much the French writers like Voltaire and Montesquieu (who were responsible for the intellectual liberation of France from the yoke of a tyrannic legacy of kings) were inspired by Mid Eastern sources.

The West has the highest quality of life by a wide margin

Historically, imperialistic centers have had better quality of life than vassal states.

You know, just saying.

Sharculese
8 years ago

jester’s fool sounds like something king crimson’s management convinced them not to call an album

pecunium
8 years ago

Varpole: . Democracy sprang primarily out of the West.

Apart from how it was a big deal in India, or the consensus based gov’ts in Africa, or the… well you get the picture.

Sharculese
8 years ago

mikey spent all of high school seething at his female teachers, so outside of some vague talking points about world history, all he really knows is filling out quarterly finance reports

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

@ Sharculese – “jester’s fool sounds like something king crimson’s management convinced them not to call an album”

The Jester’s fool he larks about
His jokes he will not share
While misandrists do softly steal
The padding from the chair
The feminists
They dig for gold
From which to forge a ring;
To summon the hypergamists
To the court of the crimson king.

pecunium
8 years ago

I’m reading “Debt, the the first 5,000 years” and I’m not willing to say that the “free market” comes from the middle east, as an idea. Mostly because Graeber (who isn’t, contra what I thought from comments elsewhere, an economist; he’s an anthropologist), has some really strong support; a lot of it from economists, that the Ur-history of market progression is all a just so story, which flat out contradicts the evident facts on the ground.

The big game changer is money. Money takes credit based system of exchange, and upends them. It turns human-based economies and makes them commodity based.

The second order effects of that are huge. In some, apparently essential way, that creates patriarchies, in ways that didn’t exist before money. It’s not that patriarchies didn’t exist but they were different, and somewhat marginal. And markets and capitalism are at odds; which isn’t much of a problem without coinage, because capital is harder to accumulate, and (this is the important part) not as durable/fungible.

For most of recorded history the “highest quality of life” by the measures we use today was in either China, or India (that would be India post about 600AD, after the collapse of the Muaury empire, and the rise of the Hindu caste structure).

China has always, so it seems, been pro-market, anti-capitalist. Islam, because of the social quirk that the gov’t was somewhat divorced of the polity (wanting to see itself as nomads of the desert/steppe, rugged and independent, rather than being urban creatures. For more on that see, “ The Inheritance of Rome: Illuminating the Dark Ages, 400-1000 (Chris Wyckham, Penguin Books, 2009) which shows how the idea of Rome shaped the world that followed, in all the places it had been; which is to say most of Europe, and N. Africa, with different influences on Asia Minor; because of the ways Byzantium colored the nations next to it, as well as the Ottoman Empire, and other successor states.

But that separation from their subjects is a large part of why, in the heyday of the Caliphate(s) non-Muslims were as well tolerated as they were; everyone who wasn’t part of the ruling class was seen as “other” so what sort of other they were wasn’t quite as important.

But it still boils down to the artificial nature of coinage making the commodification of people possible in ways that credit based economies, with human value, not commodity value; as the ultimate measure of worth, changing the nature of commerce/society.

Slavery, it seems, needs coinage. Markets don’t; and pretty much (to be a bit reductionist) all else flows from that distinction (and Smith, we must recall, was not actually in favor of, “The Free Market”, he thought markets needed to be regulated by gov’t).

As an aside, I have to say that “Debt” is both the best argument for libertarianism, as an Idea, which I have seen; and makes me certain it’s impossible in practice.

It certainly points out aspects of the “L”ibertarian Ideal which make such a state almost certain to be a miserable place to be, unless one has the wealth of Croeseus.

pecunium
8 years ago

Fuck… thankfully I only had the one link.

pecunium
8 years ago

Oh, and re China: part of the reason it’s as repressive as it is (compared to, “The West”) has to do with the amazing level of unrest it has always had. One chunk of Chinese history had a year with 16,000 revolts, more or less. That averages out to about 1.8 per hour.

Given the way they have always disliked capitalism (and the “Free Market” isn’t a natural state, look at Russia, post USSR, or Somalia), and the historic way in which dynasties change (uprising in some part of China away from the seat of Gov’t, from the reunification after the time of, “The Warring States” to the Koumintang falling to the People’s Republican Army), and protests like Tian An Men look different to the Gov’t than they do to us.

I’m not saying the reaction/system they have is right; but that’s the context in which the decisions are made.

Falconer
Falconer
8 years ago

mikey spent all of high school seething at his female teachers,

Buttpole’s whole “a woman told me men can’t be writers, therefore I will sit here and deprive you of my genius with words just to punish you all” schtick is utterly ridiculous, but there are people who get hung up on teachers’ genders.

I worked as a sub for a while. One of the high school English teachers took some leave when her pregnancy came to term, so I was teaching three classes a day for the duration on Shakespeare, Bradbury and Wilde.

One of the 12th-grade boys would do nothing but snap and snarl at me. The other teachers told me he’d never liked male teachers, and not to take it personal.

nwoslave
8 years ago

@BlackBloc (@XBlackBlocX)
“And by ‘always’ you mean “starting around the industrial revolution”, since before then Europe was a gigantic barbaric backwaters to ‘real’ civilization, whose centers revolved around the Mid East.”

Your entire post is a perfect example of marxist critical theory. After the failure of economic marxism, the marxist gang eventually went to Columbia university and came up with critical theory, which is exactly what you are using. Critical theory simply criticizes everything pertained to white, western culture. If something is good, it originated somewhere else. If something is bad, it’s unique to white, western culture.

Even if we look at something like slavery. It’s always portrayed as a uniquely white western culture, which of course is the farthest thing from the truth. During the time of slavery in the states, African families of wealth measured their personal wealth by the number of slaves they owned. Slavery is in fact an African invention. Looking back though historical documents we can clearly see that every African nation of wealth was directly related to the number of people enslaved. That was how they measured their wealth, by the number of slaves they owned.

So why is slavery in every history book depicted as a uniquely white, western invention? Marxist critical theory found that by portraying everything bad in terms of being white, western and capitalist, and encouraging the masses to embrace critical theory, the unthinking masses would willingly destroy their own culture and wealth, and hand it over to the marxist state.

pecunium
8 years ago

I also think the various ways “The West” represses actual speech/action/reforms is pretty harsh too, we just tend to not notice, because we are used to it. But look at all the people who say, “I don’t have anything to hide”, and then say they are for invasive searches, surveillance, etc., because, “If you aren’t breaking the law, who cares”.

Then look at CoIntelPro, and the Bush II administration infiltrating Quaker Meetings,and the Obama Administrations expansion of the AUMF to allow for arresting anyone, and holding them indefinitely, with no trial and only the hope of being allowed a Habeas Petition to escape.

Toss in the way things like the War Crimes Act being ignored when Blackwater/Xe commit them, and invoked when it’s people we aren’t paying, and “The West” (if by West one means “The US”) doesn’t actually compare too well against places like China.

katz
8 years ago

The Jester’s fool he larks about
His jokes he will not share
While misandrists do softly steal
The padding from the chair
The feminists
They dig for gold
From which to forge a ring;
To summon the hypergamists
To the court of the crimson king.

*slow clap*

I expect to see this on Artistry for Feminism and Kittens post-haste.

Steele
Steele
8 years ago

More to the point, it’s entirely unsurprising that he feels that the West is to trumpet its horn over accomplishments only possible through colonizing native peoples. Technological developments need money (both in infrastructural developments and in actual capital) more than any mythical traits ‘Western Civilization’ possesses. The West was very good at stealing resources from others, so I guess the rest of the world should be robbers too?

Excuse me? I certainly have time for imperialist criticisms of the West; nonetheless, the fact that the West had the means to subjugate these peoples so consistently in the first place would seem to prove my point regarding technological innovation.

ShadetheDruid
ShadetheDruid
8 years ago

Sounds like Owly is a “Dark Ages” denier (though since he’s a fundie, that wouldn’t surprise me).

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
8 years ago

Excuse me, Steelepole? Take a freaking history class and learn the difference between 1453 and 1492.

Steele
Steele
8 years ago

I suppose I should note that much of my worldview is informed by my Objectivism; take that as you will.

Snowy
Snowy
8 years ago

Ok sure, I’ll just take that as you being a pretentious clown as usual.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

Of course you’re a Rand fanboy, Steele. OF COURSE you are. Could you be any more run-of-the-mill?

katz
8 years ago

OK, now I’m starting to think that Steelpole and Ruby are the same person.

(JK, I don’t really, but they should totally date because they would love each other.)

Dracula
Dracula
8 years ago

I suppose I should note that much of my worldview is informed by my Objectivism; take that as you will.

Steele
Steele
8 years ago

Excuse me, a “fanboy”? I am a Rand acolyte who attempts to play my own small part in continuing her legacy. And though I recognize Rand as a brilliant individual, my loyalty is to her philosophy, not Rand herself. It’s a fine difference, but a distinct one.

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
8 years ago

Steele’s “everything is misandry” explained: he thinks femininity is worship of men.

Butthorn: we are not surprised.

katz
8 years ago

Excuse me, a “fanboy”? I am a Rand acolyte

I’m just going to leave that there.

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

“Rand acolyte” HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

Do you have a little shrine set up and everything, or is it just that Galt is your wank material?

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
8 years ago

Excuse me, but the only thing missing from this list of synonyms is “fanboy” because it’s too new:

acolyte
noun
surrounded by eager acolytes: assistant, helper, attendant, aide, minion, underling, lackey, henchman; follower, disciple, supporter, votary; [informal] sidekick, groupie, hanger-on.

It’s only appropriate to your station.

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
8 years ago

That’s my first broken blockquote btw.

I’m so proud.

Steele
Steele
8 years ago

I see the sneering Boobzers are out in force. No matter; puerile feminists, philosophical amateurs, and politically correct zealots generally do dislike Rand – they see her as “immoral” or other such nonsense. As one might expect, they generally have not read her works.

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
8 years ago

Excuse me?!?!1/ I’ve read The Fountainhead. I even liked it at the time.

The weird she-totally-wanted-it-so-it-wasn’t-rape-but-it-was is pretty telling vis-a-vis your views on feminism.

Snowy
Snowy
8 years ago

Well, I don’t really see her as “immoral”, more like “ridiculous” and “a dumbass” and yeah I did actually have to read her in college for some Rand scholarship that I applied to. But go on with you fanboy wanking, it’s pretty hilarious!

katz
8 years ago

As one might expect, they generally have not read her works.

I bet they haven’t read “Spreading Misandry,” either. Or “Misandry 2: The Misandering.”

Can you please do a blog post about Rand? Pleeeeeeeeeeze?

pecunium
8 years ago

Varpole: Excuse me, a “fanboy”? I am a Rand acolyte who attempts to play my own small part in continuing her legacy. And though I recognize Rand as a brilliant individual, my loyalty is to her philosophy, not Rand herself. It’s a fine difference, but a distinct one.

Please elaborate on the brilliance of, “Fuck you Jack, I got mine”, and “Ima gonna take my ball and go home if you don’t give me lots of shit I didn’t earn”.

Seriously, what, apart from those two ideas has Rand got going for her?

And, how does what I discussed above (re money, and the legacy of Rome) say about your fallacious argument that Might Made Right, in re the expansionist nature of Europe (which ignores the effect that disease had on the Americas, which had more people, living better, than Europe did at the point of first contact: try both 1491, and 1493; though I think 1491 to be a better book. You might also try, “Guns, Germs, and Steel” but Jared Diamond, though I disagree with the argument he makes in the preface, the rest of the book is pretty compelling).

hellkell
hellkell
8 years ago

I don’t think Rand was immoral, I think she was completely full of shit about a lot of things. Also, I’ve done the reading, but college was a while back, and I’ve since evolved from that particular worldview.

Tulgey Logger
Tulgey Logger
8 years ago

Sorry we shat on your point, though, Steele. We do realize you just wanted an excuse to wank and sneer. Do go ahead anyway.

cloudiah
8 years ago

I expect to see this on Artistry for Feminism and Kittens post-haste.

This is the reason for Artistry for Feminism and Kitten’s existence:
http://artistryforfeminismandkittens.wordpress.com/2012/08/13/a-trolls-catchphrase-inspires-poetry/

Sorry it took so long. I was in a meeting learning how to archive web pages and thwart robots.txt.

cloudiah
8 years ago

p.s. Confession: I LOVED Atlas Shrugged. When I was 13. I grew out of it.

Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
Sir Bodsworth Rugglesby III
8 years ago

Steelepole’s a Randroid? I don’t believe it!

Wait a second… repetitive… small minded… arrogant… repetitive… self important… overvalues minor corporate position… huffy… repetitive… uses awkward phrasing… fond of introducing irrelevances… passes guesswork off as logic… blusters constantly… repetitive…

On second thoughts, sounds like every other Randroid I’ve ever met.

Falconer
Falconer
8 years ago

No matter; puerile feminists, philosophical amateurs, and politically correct zealots generally do dislike Rand

YOU PUNY-MINDED INSECTS DON’T HAVE THE MIND POWER TO HANDLE MY PURE TRUTH!

– they see her as “immoral” or other such nonsense.

Oh yeah, she cheated on her husband, but got angry when her lover cheated on her, not with his wife, but with a third woman; she wrote thousands of pages scorning collective activities, but went on Medicare and Social Security as soon as she needed them; she wrote mash notes to a guy who murdered a young girl, extorted ransom money from her father, and dumped her dismembered body all over town, because she thought he had risen above the law and thus become his own moral source.

We can argue about “immoral,” but she certainly sounds a nasty person.

As one might expect, they generally have not read her works.

As one might expect, people who suppose that critics have not read the works they are criticizing would be wrong.

Sharculese
8 years ago

No matter; puerile feminists, philosophical amateurs, and politically correct zealots generally do dislike Rand – they see her as “immoral” or other such nonsense.

actually, it’s mostly professional philosophers who bag on rand, because her work is incoherent gibberish. do you read any actual philosophy, or just mra blogs?

As one might expect, they generally have not read her works.

uh dude, like a lot of teenagers i went through my randroid phase. i grew out of it about the same time i entered college because i realized basing my worldview on a bunch of self-serving one-dimensional caricatures was a stupid thing to do.

that and she’s almost as bad of a writer as you are.

Sharculese
8 years ago

*worships a woman who literally wrote a scene where all the people she disagrees with die a painful death*

*calls other people puerile*

*is mikey varpole, spoiled white baby extroardinaire*

Sharculese
8 years ago

ayn rand would definitely have seen mikey ‘i cant get anything done because waaaaaaah feminsm’ steele as a moocher