Monday assorted links

1. “Since its first meeting, the Coffin Club has helped hundreds craft their own caskets.”  File under: the do-it-yourself culture that is New Zealand.

2. Why Stalin created a cult of Pushkin.  And translating North Korean fiction.

3. “Today Dolezal is jobless, and feeding her family with food stamps…The only work she has been offered is reality TV, and porn.”  Link here.

4. Profile of Geert Wilders.

5. There is now a signaling theory of lullabies.

Comments

2 - Tyler, good for you, keeping this fraud out of the memory hole. Maybe next up, you'll rediscover John Edwards. You remember - you voted for him as VP in 2004?

I am not sure it is fair to compare Edwards to Pushkin. Even if Stalin had never risen to power, Pushkin would be recognized as one of the greats. Also, I doubt Edwards writes poetry.

If you don't know Russian and have ten minutes and want the details (on why Pushkin is so good at what he does), look for posts discussing Pushkin at language hat.

"There’s nobody saying, ‘Well, that’s racist if you say that about Rachel’, or ‘That’s sexist if you say that about Rachel.’ There’s no protected class for me."

LOL. Welcome to being White, Rachel.

The goal should be a free, open, non discriminating society. Ideally colorless. Or colorblind. (I don't know the nomenclature.) And post affirmative action.

The Hayekian in me says we can achieve this incrementally.

Rachel Dolezal was not working to achieve this.

Your war on nature will not end well. It never does. People are tribal. That will never change.

Non-contacted Amazon tribes are tribal, for sure. I, myself, am a nationalist - and a colorblind nation surely is what we must strive to achieve. Americans with their Jim Crow, one drop rule and all that may be more like the Amazon tribes, though.

nationalism is terrifying. tribalism is quaint.

No, it is not. Nationalism is men's social nature and civic duty joining for the completing of a holly mission. Tribalism is the nationalism of inferior people, who cannot deal with complex abstractions like fatherland and duty. Tribalism is the nationalism of the inferior, the ignorant and feeble-minded hence being the nationalism of the Amazon indians and the rednecks.

The only thing worse than nationalism is not having it.

Indeed.

The tribe is an extension of the family, a natural extension of the most basic of human organizations. It's as normal as it gets. The nation state, on the other hand, is an abstraction designed by the power-mad to subjugate and exploit others with ever more complex restrictions on their behavior. Amazingly, they've actually succeeded in brainwashing supposedly normal people into giving up a huge portion of their wealth and freedom to subsidize this crap.

"It’s as normal as it get"
Not, normal, natural - like walking aeoung naked and adoring idols and eating people is for the savage. The narional state marks men reaching the adult age, while the savage, with his tribes and suoerstitions, is frozen in a sad infance. This is why, as a more sophisticated people, we took the duty to protect the savage tribes in our territory and protect them from greed people who would try to explore them. We are capable of abstraction, of complex and rewarding thinking.

Tribalism doesn't scale well.

It will end well for the machines. Everything is a physics problem, and physics says tribes can be vaporized.

Rachel Dolezal was working to be herself. I think if we want an individualist society, we need to have room for people to become themselves as fully as possible. So in a way, she was working for it, simply by ignoring the project and becoming it's aim.

You don't 'work' to 'be yourself'. You are yourself. You work to accomplish what you need to accomplish during the day. Sometimes yourself makes this more difficult, sometimes less.

Many people are on a journey of self-discovery throughout their lives. May you're not, but don't knock it if you haven't tried it.

Many people are on a journey of self-discovery throughout their lives.

Many people are self-absorbed fools and also keep psychotherapists in business.

What about "become such as you are, having learned what that is" - Pindar.

Is that you Justice Kennedy?

"There’s no protected class for me.”

LOL. Welcome to being White, Rachel."

Do people really believe this sort of thing? Have you ever opened a history book? Or any book?

#3 - What a tangled, tangled web, and a personal disaster. I wonder how her biological brother, Joshua, turned out?

I wish modern elites would recognize that traditional strictures are not crafted with their socio-economic strata in mind.

3. The country needs a massive infrastructure program to build bridges so that the people chased out of polite society can live underneath them.

2. Interesting story on North Korea, but if the writer means to imply, in her final paragraphs, that the "censorship" now practiced in the U.S. or South Korea is comparable to, or furnishes a basis for understanding, censorship and suppression in North Korea, she is very silly.

It's the Guardian. Silly is what they do.

Unfortunately its not silly (though The Guardian often is synonymous with silly left)...North Korea is not the only country in the world with propaganda. If this was not obvious before 9 November, it should be by now...

North Korea is not the only country in the world with propaganda. True. Therefore any country with propaganda is as monstrously oppressive as North Korea. False. Therefore, wherever you live, you have a good sense of the texture of daily life in a monstrously oppressive country. Silly.

It seems like you're really working hard to overinterpret some implied parallel that, as you simply, is pretty silly on its face.

3. Some people pretend to be Irish (on St. Patrick's Day), some people pretend to be a descendant of a passenger on the Mayflower, some people pretend to be rich, some people pretend to be poor, some people pretend to be your friend, some people pretend to be native American, some people pretend to be followers of Messiah Jesus, some people pretend to be doctors, some people pretend to be policy wonks, some people pretend to be libertarian, some people pretend to be sick, some people pretend to be financial advisers, some people pretend to know what they are talking about, some people pretend they know somebody famous, some people pretend they can't hear, some people pretend they have degrees from elite colleges, some people pretend to be white, some people pretend to be black, . . . . Back when we lived in tribes, it was all but impossible to pretend to be something or somebody you weren't. Today, we are all actors on a large stage, pretending. That's why the internet is so popular: it allows us to be whomever or whatever you choose to be. It reminds of the crazy colonel in Dances With Wolves who pissed his pants, because he could. The world is full of crazy people, just like that colonel.

"Some people pretend to be Irish (on St. Patrick’s Day), some people pretend to be a descendant of a passenger on the Mayflower, some people pretend to be rich, some people pretend to be poor, some people pretend to be your friend, some people pretend to be native American"

Most of those people don't build a career out of pretending they are someone else. That's generally considered fraud.

She has changed her name on all her legal documents

Old habits die hard. I suppose it's her version of "ban the box."

"Most of those people don’t build a career out of pretending they are someone else. That’s generally considered fraud."

Unless it's Fox News, then they put you in front of gullible people as an expert on Sweden.

Who pretended to be an 'expert on Sweden'?

"All the World's a stage.
And, all the men and women merely players."

I ceased pretending to be an adult (almost two years ago) when I retired.

According to an Obama regime diktat, a seven year-old biological male/boy has the Constitutional/human right to "identify" as a female/girl. How is it different when this woman "identified" as a black woman?

The tragedy of St. Patrick's Day is not that many pretend to be Irish, it's that amateurs pretend to be drinkers.

All of us to a degree are crazy. Some are more crazier than others.

I pretend to be deaf whenever the wife's mouth is moving. I mean she never shuts up . . .

En fin, I think that some people pretend and other people strive.

The tragedy is pretending St. Patrick was Irish and supporting piracy on the high seas.

Some people pretend to be Irish (on St. Patrick’s Day) ...

That would have worked better as lines of blank verse.

"She has applied for more than 100 jobs, but no one will hire her, not even to stack supermarket shelves."

Yeah, that's bullshit. I applied to work the night shift stocking shelves one summer a month before I was moving out of state. I was upfront about only being able to work 1 month, so most places wouldn't consider it. The Kroger's assistant manager didn't bat an eye and just asked if I could start that night.

I'm seriously skeptical that the type of assistant manager at a grocery store would have any idea who she was or would care. They just want a warm body that's willing to work the 10 pm to 6 am shift and will come in reliably.

Agreed. I think she's a fantasist, and perhaps not stable. I don't believe 1/3 of what is in that Guardian article, since the Guardian is credulous at best and deceptive at worst, and Dolezal is the source for much of it.

I had forgotten who she was. But I would imagine even the assistant manager at the grocery store sticks an applicants name in Google to see if anything comes up. And if what comes up suggests "wow she's a nutjob," they might want to look for just about anyone else.

So it is vaguely plausible she is having a lot of trouble finding any kind of work. But it is also plausible that her life is a journey of make-believe.

She has a post-baccalaureate degree. He'd likely have seen a red flag after she uttered three sentences to him.

She sued her previous employer for discrimination, a fact that can be easily googled by any human resources dept. It is probably why no one will hire her. She's a lawsuit waiting to happen.

Maybe she could be the first person to sue employers both for being white and for being black.

She's not black, Daniel.

That whole story was bullshit. That reporter didn't fact check anything she told him. SHE'S A KNOWN LIAR. Ya gots to fact check, yo!

#3 - I remember in the old Spike Lee movie Get On The Bus there was a character who was a white guy who self-identified as black, strangely he didn't receive any ridicule and was more or less accepted by all the black characters in the story.

AFAICT this is not new, I've always heard of (a few) white people more or less joining the black community.

Also, see Shaun King, just about as black as Dolzeal but with none of the blowback.

Why did she arouse such anger?

I remember having read one Clarence Darrow biography saying the Black leaders who called him to defend a Black who defended his house from white aggressors included a Black guy who insisted he was a White guy just concerned about justiceand a White guy who insisted he was Black defending a member of his people.

ShaunKing brazened it out and never admitted it.

This works.

He's half black. You can tell that by looking at him. Don't you think he'd have been easily categorized in Kentucky 200 years ago?

Can you?

http://niketalk.com/g/i/1679477/shaun-king-activist-from-the-blm-movement-was-put-on-blast-as-being-a-white-male-vol-dolezal-2-0/flat/1/

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3205042/He-s-no-Rachel-Dolezal-Shaun-King-s-wife-defends-husband-claims-lied-race-family-member-CONFIRMS-parents-white.html

He sort of implies that his dad is not his real dad. Dolezel could have easily said the same.

You've seen the childhood photos? He makes the most of what he's got as an adult but people still have to.... want to see him as black for it work.

To be clear I have no problem with him or Dolzeal self-identifying as black. I just think it's weird that he is (still) accepted and there was a whole social justice jihad against her.

3. Haha. Poor woman picked the wrong minority and forgot to run for Senator.

That made me laugh. Thank you.

#1. If this was in America, some casket manufacturer would get the local city council to impose an ordinance banning DIY casket-making. And the local newspaper would run an op-ed warning of the dangers of "unregulated" caskets. And my facebook feed would be respond by arguing that casket manufacturing should be a government run monopoly, "for the common good" (because of the dangers of aforesaid unregulated caskets), and the workforce should be unionized because we owe it to low-skilled laborers to provide them with well paying jobs. And all the caskets would be shit and cost $10,000 each.

"If this was in America, some casket manufacturer would get the local city council to impose an ordinance banning DIY casket-making. "

That kind of activity is depressingly common.

The coffin club story was not that good. Shows the club is rather amateurish, nothing like Nigeria's stylized coffin industry. For example, take this part: "Another Coffin Club favorite is Wes Hayward’s casket. The former trolley car driver rolled in a replica streetcar down the hill from his funeral service to a waiting hearse. “It was wonderful,” Williams recalls. “I just wished we’d also had a little bell and rung it.”" - well why didn't you have a bell? That is an obvious accessory. The lack of a bell shows this club is nothing more than a publicity stunt and ill-equipped. Give them a few years and maybe they have their act together.

Bonus trivia: the character in Peal Buck's "The Good Earth" looked forward to collecting enough money to have a respectable funeral, which was a common concern in Buck's China of 100 years ago.

What's your dream coffin, Ray?

#3. Dolezal deserves better than that. I personally think she is a fascinating person and if she wrote a book about how she became who she is I would love to read it. I suspect she's a harbinger of things to come, in terms of social/cultural evolution.

She became who she is by her parents teaching her to hate who she was. And she's not exceptionally bright or charismatic, so as a result of a series of poor personal choices she's spiraling down the funnel. Cognitive elites can preach about endlessly fluid definitions of family or personhood, and maybe even pull it off in their own rarefied spheres, but that doesn't mean a middling-IQ person like Ms. Dolezal should do it. Privately of course, most cognitive elites are downright Victorian in their personal lives.

Nonsense. I have no idea what her IQ is, but her personal journey, whatever it's causes and sources, is ones of the most unique we've ever seen. That in itself has exceptional value. She's a rare bird that ought to be appreciated and studied specifically for that reason. We should be encouraging more people to violate the arbitrary boundaries of race and culture. The self should not be constrained by arbitrary social constructs.

We should be encouraging more people to violate the arbitrary boundaries of race and culture.

Except they're not arbitrary. Most parents put a great deal of thought into who gets to sire or bear their offspring and how they are going to be raised.

The self should not be constrained by arbitrary social constructs.

Again, not arbitrary, and salutary, to keep not-very-bright people like Ms. Dolezal from blowing up their personal lives and being a public charge. Our modern elite commit a grave disservice by preaching such radical individualism.

She's a public charge because other people have made her an outcast. Should we similarly counsel people against being gay because they might be discriminated against due to they sexual identity? Oops, you blew up your lives because religious bigots won't hire you! Too bad, you middling IQ people shouldn't be allowed to be gay!

Hazel's last intervention in the topic at hand was to laud people who eat steak with salad forks. To an ordinary person, that's just mildly clumsy or silly. To Hazel, it's a gloriously transgressive act against oppressive social convention. (Someone also once gave her a hard time about wearing white shoes in September, which she's still in a snit about).

When gay men had to be discrete, it limited their sexual partners and reduced vectors for infectious disease. When we told them to do whatever they wanted--100+ sexual partners a year and a torrid culture of drug-fueled orgies--they promptly screwed themselves to death. I'm not being particularistic; bastardy, promiscuity, drug use, lots of things, all have bad consequences if you don't have a lot of money or brains.

The Gods of the Copybook Headings limp up to explain it once more.

bastardy, promiscuity, drug use, lots of things, all have bad consequences if you don’t have a lot of money or brains.

Liquor and street drugs are pretty effective at ruining the lives of people with money and brains as well, especially if they're monied enough to be excused from working. As for bastardy, people manage, more or less. It's a reasonable wager you see less of it among the more affluent strata because people in that strata have longer time horizons (which means fewer ill thought out sexual encounters but also greater acceptance of being blindsided by events).

Excuse me, less acceptance of being blindsided by events.

Nobody ever gave me a hard time about wearing white shoes after labor day. I do remember a story in which the Queen of England was snickered at by some southern ladies for making that error though.
People should be allowed to eat with whatever fork works for them. People who care about forks are retarded. (People who care about using the word retarded are also retarded. ) Both of these things are primarily designed to signal class membership, and as such enforce class hierarchies, which we should be trying to undermine, not reinforce.

"When gay men had to be discrete, it limited their sexual partners and reduced vectors for infectious disease..."

Unless one considers the wives of these closeted gay men. Open acceptance of homosexuality has almost certainly reduced health risks to women.

and as such enforce class hierarchies, which we should be trying to undermine, not reinforce.

Humans are pack animals. They will always form hierarchies. Therefore, we invent things like culture and social more's to channel human nature to constructive ends.

Just how long do you intend to keep up this battle against biological reality?

Some people need social roles to fit into.

The mistake a lot of intelligent people make is to assume that because social limitations/tradition might potentially inhibit their freedom to be whatever they want to be or do whatever they want to do, that this must mean that everyone, regardless of abilities etc., would be better off without roles and limitations. But I think, much like religion, these roles and beliefs can in fact be useful. Maybe not to you personally (and they aren't to me personally either), but we aren't the full universe of humanity.

Personally, I don't think different rules should apply to me than to other people. I don't feel inclined to tell other people they should live according to roles and limitations that I'm unwilling to apply to myself.

Unless one considers the wives of these closeted gay men. Open acceptance of homosexuality has almost certainly reduced health risks to women.

No, it would only do that if the men in question in 1966 were doing a great deal of toilet-trading.

The mistake a lot of intelligent people make is to assume that because social limitations/tradition might potentially inhibit their freedom to be whatever they want to be or do whatever they want to do, that this must mean that everyone, regardless of abilities etc., would be better off without roles and limitations.

No one is 'better off' without 'roles' and 'limitations'.

No one is ‘better off’ without ‘roles’ and ‘limitations’.

What a terrible stultifying way of living. I pity you.

Well it might be good to have society create and apply roles and limitations, while having a sub-current that encourages bright, inquisitive people to break out of those roles and limitations. Just as manners might be useful for a culture even if there might also be value in some people ignoring them.

Not wanting to apply different rules for yourself doesn't necessarily mean the right answer is a removal of all such restrictions; it may mean that the right answer is for you and others to receive some social disapproval as a means to providing a cultural framework within which the majority of average people are better off.

While I have tended to reject any social limitation on my free action, I do derive some happiness and self-worth (at times) from trying to be a good citizen and a good provider for my family.

While a role can be a limit, at times, on upward dreams, it can also be a limit on someone's downward crash. Even for bright people but especially for average people. Telling the 95 IQ kid that he can be anything he wants to be, and giving him no role of "good citizen, good man" to follow, seems to be a recipe for bitter disappointment and social detachment when that kid reaches adulthood.

Hazel,

Ever have any kids? Did you just let them do whatever they wanted?

If we're going to have roles and limitations, those roles and limitations should have a rational basis and not be arbitrary social constructs like "eat with the right fork" or "if you're biologically white, you have to act and dress like a white person". I'm happy to advise the 95 IQ person not to do drugs, to graduate from high school, and to pay his bills, but I'm not going to tell him that he has to adopt white culture and identify as white. Fuck that.

Well it might be good to have society create and apply roles and limitations, while having a sub-current that encourages bright, inquisitive people to break out of those roles and limitations. Just as manners might be useful for a culture even if there might also be value in some people ignoring them.

You ain't Elon Musk. Give it up.

Sometimes the "rational basis" is just that we need to agree on something. Like driving on a certain side of the road. Table manners and social pleasantries could be seen as a species of that. We need ways to deal with each other socially, and arbitrary social norms help make that easier than a free-for-all where we have no idea what to expect from someone if we haven't met them before.

Elon Musk ain't Turkey Vulture. In the final universal accounting we will be of equal importance.

When someone fails to obey those social pleasantries, do you make them a social outcast, or do you first try to politely tell them what the correct custom is and then eventually choose to treat them as a little eccentric if they don't? Is idenfiying as white and acting like a white person so important that we must exile white people who refuse to conform?

People should be allowed to eat with whatever fork works for them. People who care about forks are retarded. (People who care about using the word retarded are also retarded. ) Both of these things are primarily designed to signal class membership,

They also 'signal' that you're not going to distract people with your piggy table manners.

My behavior can be a bit eccentric at times and I am quite accepting of other people's eccentricities. But I don't know that a social convention can survive without the occasional tougher enforcement. So I don't know that a culture could survive if everybody took my approach, meaning I can't recommend it as the standard.

distract people with your piggy table manners

People who are distracted by table manners are superficial snobs.

So I don’t know that a culture could survive if everybody took my approach

If a culture can't survive the freedom of it's inhabitants to be deviate from arbitrary social conventions, then maybe it doesn't deserve to.

Since being black gets you special dispensations, whites pretending to be black isn't just identity.

People who are distracted by table manners are superficial snobs.

No, they have a sense of aesthetics and decorum, which is offended watching you dribble gravy on yourself and pick your nose.

She didn't just exercise a private eccentricity, which she was then picked on for exercising. She joined, and contributed greatly to, the burgeoning culture of grievance and victimhood.

which is offended watching you dribble gravy on yourself and pick your nose

In case you have already forgotten, we were talking about using the incorrect fork.

"She became who she is by her parents teaching her to hate who she was."

Assuming she is not merely lying about them. We only have her stories about them, odds are they are just ordinary people..

They're evangelicals and they lived it in a peculiarly thorough way. So, not ordinary, but nothing necessarily the matter either.

you think there's nothing the matter with parents that raised a daughter so confused and full of self-loathing that she tried to pass herself off as black?

you think there’s nothing the matter with parents that raised a daughter so confused and full of self-loathing that she tried to pass herself off as black?

If you fancy you're kids are programmable machines, you're a fool.

You're in luck Hazel! The point of that article is to push her book.

In that superficial identity traits consume your life and ultimately make you miserable?

Rather than wanting to be black I suspect she wanted to be embrace victimhood and the faux seriousness it brings to people who are mostly empty inside.

I don't think I would describe her interest in black culture as "superficial", given that she basically subsumed her entire identity and became "black" in her own eyes. It's hard to get less superficial than that.

It's possible that the abuse she suffered as a child might have given her some sort of psychological complex that made her interested in blackness, but that's still really, really interesting. Lots of people with really wierd abusive upbrinings are interesting.

No, her interest wasn't superficial, it was all consuming. The identity traits she embraced are superficial: frizzy hair, skin tone, clothing etc.

Little badges of victimhood to to give her life meaning.

We might be at a tipping point in human history, where people went from trying desperately to avoid being a victim, to embracing victimhood as a step-up in status. First world problems.

I didn't get the impression from the article that the adoption of frizzy hair, skin tone, etc where driven by a desire for victimhood though. They were driven by a desire for social acceptance within the black community. She "felt black" and wanted other black people to accept her as such, so she (slowly over a period of time) started dressing black, bronzing her skin, wearing her hair in black styles, wearing a perm and/or weave, etc. What she describes is that she got tired of trying to explain herself all the time as a white woman who identified as black, so she just started changing her appearance and allowing black people to think she was black without correcting them.

Being black doesn't mean anything in itself. It's just skin tone. She wanted to be a black activist, a full-time mourner of perceived injustice of which she too was a victim.

The way I read it, her civil rights activism started some years after she had become part of the black community. She was eating lunch with the black kids her freshman year of college, long before she was doing political activism.

She was eating lunch with the black kids her freshman year of college, l

I lunch therefore I am?

If you immerse yourself in a different culture long enough, you become part of that culture. When non-whites move to America, we call this "assimilation".
Why is it so implausible to think that Dolezal became assimilated to black culture, and therefore, became ethnically black?

If you immerse yourself in a different culture long enough, you become part of that culture. When non-whites move to America, we call this “assimilation”. Why is it so implausible to think that Dolezal became assimilated to black culture, and therefore, became ethnically black?

A. She just isn't. She didn't grow up with that. She never got near it until she was 22 years old. She had scant contact with actual blacks until she was about 18, and in that case it was Mississippi blacks at an evangelical college.

B. She'd been living in Spokane and Coeur d'Alene for about a decade when her cover was blown. These are two counties which, between them, have a black population about 1.4% of the total. Some immersion.

"I suspect she’s a harbinger of things to come, in terms of social/cultural evolution."

History says you are correct. Every time we think you people have reached the bottom of the crazy bucket, you find some new level of crazy. My I hope is when you get tired of playing make believe about race and sex, you play make believe with gravity and start jumping off of buildings.

Ahh yes, an endless future of racial strife and division. Anyone who doesn't accept the inevitability of this is denying the law of gravity.
Transcend race? That's cray-cray talk.

Where do you think Diversity comes from?

It's ironic how the end-game for "Diversity" is actually the destruction of diversity. Everyone and everywhere must eventually become like everyone and everywhere else. We shall unite on the plains of Babel and build a tower to Heaven!

I don't see how anything about her story really does much to transcend race. Just as I don't think being transgender actually transcends gender. Both actually establish that there is something about being "white" and being "black," like there is something about being "male" and being "female," that people might identify with and feel that they actually "are." While it might create fluidity in that people can opt to be one or the other depending on how they feel inside, it also further entrenches the underlying categories.

Race is transcended when people don't give a shit what race they are, not when they try really hard to be one race that happens to be different than their actual heritage.

I don't disagree. However, I think allowing people to self-identify as whatever they want is a first step towards deconstructing the social constructs around race (and to a certain extent gender). Gender obviously has a far stronger biological basis than race, so I don't think it will go away, but we may have a lot more social flexibility about what it means to be "male" or "female". I mean, fewer girls in princess dresses with pink cinderlla castles, and more tomboys and fewer boys in football helmets with dump-trucks and more Prince/David Bowie androgynous-yet-sexy types.
As for race, eventually being "black" or "white" should be like picking a music genre you're into - are you a goth or a headbanger?

Also I think gender should be fluid enough that there's no need for gender-reassignment surgery. if someone's a biological male "girl", they should be able to accept themselves as such and not actually have to be biologically "reassigned".

I don’t disagree. However, I think allowing people to self-identify as whatever they want is a first step towards deconstructing the social constructs around race (and to a certain extent gender).

Identify as a plant, Hazel. I want an excuse for blasting you with a garden hose.

"Also I think gender should be fluid enough that there’s no need for gender-reassignment surgery. if someone’s a biological male “girl”, they should be able to accept themselves as such and not actually have to be biologically “reassigned”."

I think the trans community would violently disagree with you?

Yes, they certainly would. I think Turkey Vulture is correct that gender reassignment is internally contradictory to the notion of trans-genderism. If gender is flexible then it doesn't matter what genitals you have. of course, some people are really into body-modification, and they have a right to do it, but it's not a medical necessity.

Some people really think they'd be happier with different parts. I'm sure there are some people who this is accurate for, but I think most feel like they are the "wrong gender" in the sense of the social roles of each gender. Having the right parts can make it easier to fit into those social roles, but I think it is the social aspect that is central (for most).

Some people really think they’d be happier with different parts. I’

Or with a different wife. Or with a different husband. Or with different surroundings. A rueful man reflecting on his (self-initiated) divorce 27 years earlier had this to say, "You think life's going to be all new and different. Then the dust settles and life's pretty much the same". And so it goes, not only for divorces but also for the meat-and-potatoes of the medical ghouls whose business is gender reassignment (and see Paul McHugh on that subject). You're always condemned to your own company.

She does turn out to be more interesting - and more pitiable - than expected, I'll give you that. Not knowing about her childhood, I hadn't realized, though it illustrates nothing about black people, that hers was a story about particularly virulent white trash. It occurs to me that around the time she was beginning this rigmarole, no less than Oxford University Press published a book called "Was Huck Black?" And wasn't that the period when the academics decided that Mayella and her old chiffarobe had been more sinned against, by her genteel white author, than sinning? So maybe Mayella was sort of black too. I think Ms.Dolezal could be forgiven for imagining that the crucible of campus politics was trending toward a more invented or "holistic" notion of identity, rather than the same old predictable binary.

that hers was a story about particularly virulent white trash.

Uh, no. Her dad ain't Sugar Bear.

"White trash" wouldn't adopt three black children. Most likely she's making it up.

I dunno. Your East Texas variety, say, maybe not (though they would in the case of the children being their own grandchildren, family being much stronger with the people I'm thinking of, than race prejudice). I just read that book about the various heresies that sprung up in Western New York around the time of the Erie Canal. It demonstrated to me that my notions of class had been too Southern-centric. It's crazies all over. It's easy for me to see Dolezal's family as the heirs of those folks, slightly more than the rest of us are.

I wouldn't say "white trash" exactly. She lived in a remote mountain cabin where her parents were living off the land, essentially. They were "off the grid" religious fanatics. It's very likely that she had very little exposure to mainstream white culture at all, (did they even have a television set?) so it's not that surprising that she failed to identify with it when she went to college.

If they were 'off the grid' 'fanatics', it's unlikely she or her brother would have slid right into higher education, which they did.

"Dolezal deserves better than that. "

Why?

You literally cannot believe anything she says. She casually slanders her parents which makes even the Guardian refuse to publish the alleged details.

She is a repulsive human being of no interest to anyone.

In a sane society, she would have been let go from her job, due to her lying/credibility issues, and suffered some local shame from her peers and community. They would have then realized that while, perhaps very misguided, she seems to be a decent person capable of contributing to a community in some way.

Instead we have hundreds of millions of people pointing at her and laughing, from across the country and world, paired with local isolation. In a sense it's cruel and unusual how we have treated her, even if she is strange.

Yes. The way society treats people who are different is often cruel to the extreme. Dolezal is one of those strange individual cases that don't fit into a category that we've officially decided to be accepting of, so she ends up being a literal scape-goat.

Yes. The way society treats people who are different is often cruel to the extreme.

No, 'society' doesn't do that. A distinct minority of schoolchildren do that. To their own peers.

Rachel Dolezal is 'different' in that she's spent much of her time on this Earth manufacturing a simulacrum of a life rather than simply living it, and lying to people and about people in the process. This sort of conduct is shunned, for some reason (by people exercising their freedom about with whom to associate).

Now she's a goat? Pretty versatile.

She fits the definition of a "scape-goat" according to the modern use of the term. Not a literal goat, but a person to whom blame is assigned and who is then outcast for the sins of others. I'll admit there's some ambiguity to whether the word "literal" applies to the original meaning of the word or the modern metaphorical usage. What I mean is that if you actually look at what happened to her, "scape-goat" is an accurate term.

She fraudulently misrepresented herself as Black. Tricked those close to her. Took an academic job that could have gone to a real minority.

How precisely is she a scapegoat? She lied, her lies caught up with her. She is the ultra-low-budget version of Bernie Madoff. Orm of course, Elizabeth Warren.

A scape-goat was a literal thing. You could touch it. Literally. It was a goat.

And the original scape-goat was itself completely blameless I think. I'm no Jewish theologian, but I'm not aware of goats being able to rise to the level of sin.

So even under modern "I'm using literal in the metaphorical sense" usage, I think it's a swing and a miss.

She honestly considers herself black, so is she really lying?

She doesn't 'honestly consider herself black' unless she's having a psychotic episode.

So, it's impossible for an immigrant to ever consider themselves "American" unless they are psychotic, right? A Japanese person is always Japanese, and never "American" no matter how long he's lived in America, how good his English is, or how many American customs he adopts?

So, it’s impossible for an immigrant to ever consider themselves “American” unless they are psychotic, right? A Japanese person is always Japanese, and never “American” no matter how long he’s lived in America, how good his English is, or how many American customs he adopts?

It appears it's not possible for you to stop confounding ethnic identity with loose associative affiliations which turn particularly on formal legal status.

I agree with this. It is in a slightly different form, but it is the same mechanism as we see behind the Internet Outrage Machine.

On the other hand, it seems like she is writing a book and is trying to get some publicity, and perhaps make money off of her situation. I had completely forgotten about her existence until this post. If that is the game now, I don't feel as bad for her, unless it is genuinely true that the extent of the social shaming she has received is so bad that she has no other options to support herself.

In fairness, I think anyone in a position like this would want their own side of the story to be presented, and making money off of it is just good business and common sense

That is true. I would definitely want to get my side out there.

I didn't pay very close attention to this story when it first made its way across the internet, but if she did sue for employment discrimination and make up racially-motivated incidents against her, I am becoming less sympathetic. Still doesn't need the entire country shaming her or even talking about her.

Disagree. The woman was a political activist who attempted to incite hate against Whites with her fake hate crimes. She is a race traitor who deserves every bit of the ridicule.

Can we banish the term "race-traitor" please?
Fuck anyone who thinks that someone owes an obligation of loyalty to one's "race". Seriously. Fuck them forever.

True. And the deterrent effect of tabloid shaming is much more than offset by the "coarsening of the discourse" anyway.

"she seems to be a decent person capable of contributing to a community in some way"

What exactly, who'd hire her? With her, it's the same problem as the ex-cons face, everyone believes in second chances .... but provided by someone else.

You should hire her, and the two of you could go on amazing journies of self-discovery together.

"I suspect she’s a harbinger of things to come, in terms of social/cultural evolution."

If you mean where we pretend to be members of socially favored categories* in order to achieve jobs where we don't create any value for society.... then yes, she is. Hopefully Trump can put a stop to it.

*See the "transgenders," conquistador Americans, and the flight from White.

This comment did not go over well with the MR crowd because it isn't hateful drivel.

Dolezal faked being a minority in order to get a scholarship, a teaching position, and a job at the NAACP where she faked multiple hate crimes. Jan supports her. No surprises here.

I think Dolezal angers people because she challenges conventional notions of race, which throws a wrench into both political parties operating paradigms.
They find her existence confusing and keep trying to shoehorn it into their pre-existing narratives. She must be a faker, she can't really consider herself black, otherwise we'd have to rethink the whole concept of racial identity, and identity politics and everything that goes along with it.

she challenges conventional notions of race,

The 'conventional notion' being that you don't choose your race. 'Conventional' here meaning 'reality-based'.

Race is largely a social construct. Millions of mixed-race people identify as black, or white, based on how they *feel* about which community they *belong* to. Reality is mutable.

"... otherwise we’d have to rethink the whole concept of racial identity, and identity politics and everything that goes along with it."

That works as far as explaining rage from the left. From my side, no anger, just schadenfreude over the fate of a more-than-normally-confused SJW.

Her memoir is coming out. Please don't support such a person with a purchase. Get it from the library. (She is going to make bank as every University and community library will purchase a copy. #OnlyInAmerika)

I assumed the purpose of Rachel Dolezal was to demonstrate the lunacy of the Left

Well, blacks rejected her when this masquerade came to light versus progressives rallying behind Elizabeth Warren when her fraud became apparent.

So, I don't think Rachel Dolezal was demonstrative of the Left. American Blacks are allied with Democrats but they aren't generally progressive.

It is hard to see where the psychological and the sociological diverge, in this matter. She's probably nuts, and her parents have played a role in bringing that about. But she thrived for a while in the nutty world of endless grievances.

She’s probably nuts, and her parents have played a role in bringing that about.

Wagers, no. Some people just zig when they oughta zag.

Adopting four exotic and helpless strangers into the family and telling you they have an equal claim on mom and dad's resources, and then (according to Dolezal) requiring you to be their primary caregiver is bound to make quite an impression on a 15-year old girl. She's apparently still lugging one of them around.

Again, I'm curious how Joshua Dolezal turned out. These parents come across as human wrecking balls.

Adopting four exotic and helpless strangers into the family and telling you they have an equal claim on mom and dad’s resources, and then (according to Dolezal) requiring you to be their primary caregiver is bound to make quite an impression on a 15-year old girl.

Is that your issue? Strange as it may seem to you, people grow up in large families with younger siblings and don't engage is strange years long exercises in performance art.

They're not 'wrecking balls', any more than Ted Cruz missionary in-laws are 'wrecking balls' or the parents in impecunious farm families are wrecking balls.

Joshua Dolezal is a rank-and-file English professor with a wife and young children. His name was dragged through the mud a couple of years back when someone filed shizzy sex-abuse charges against him (over incidents which supposedly occurred 15 years earlier). The prosecutor elected to let the matter drop.

Here's his memoir:

https://www.amazon.com/Down-Mountaintop-Belonging-Joshua-Dolezal/dp/1609382390

I know people like to imagine adoption is equivalent, but it is really not. It's extraordinarily challenging, especially outside extended family and native culture.

Interesting. His memoir sounds strikingly similar to what Rachel Dolezal describes, just with different destinations. Both siblings appear to have embarked on a quest for belonging after being raised in a frankly bizarre environment by modern standards. He went one direction and she another. But in a sense, they are both extreme examples of a process that many people go through - searching for their place in the world. Those who come from such strange upbringings have a harder time, for obvious reasons, but that's why their journeys are so interesting.

It’s extraordinarily challenging, especially outside extended family and native culture.

No, it's not extraordinary challenging, except to the extent having children is. You've got some pitfalls you don't have with ordinary kids, but that's it. Fostering can be because the youngsters in question have been in abnormal circumstances.

especially outside extended family and native culture.

Kids were 0-3 when they were adopted.

Interested to know what makes Art an expert on adoption.

But evidently not the least bit interested in what makes anti-Gnostic an expert.

Adoption of non-exotic youngsters by infertile couples used to be much more familiar and prevalent than it is today.

Here's some studies here. If you had a proper bibliography, it might show something different. The suggestion of the three in question is that there are some differences in subpopulations, not that you're climbing a mountain by adopting a kid.

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/1469-7610.00538/full

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1207/s15374424jccp1604_9

https://academic.oup.com/sf/article-abstract/86/3/1139/2235008/Parental-Divorce-Marital-Conflict-and-Children-s

(Adoptions in my social circle all worked out passably, bar one couple who adopted three children en bloc (ages about 5-12) whose parents had been killed in a car accident).

5. Maybe I didn't read the article closely enough, but I'm not seeing why the theory would require lullabies rather than simple talking. Tone etc. can be changed to signal that the parent is paying attention without requiring anything musical.

Fascinating to me that no one picks up the defense of Dolezal in the same way that they do for gender identification. If you can choose your own gender, why not race? What line, exactly, did she cross that garners her no sympathy from, at least, the left?

Im white so take this with a grain of salt, but i assume its the "I endured a lifetime of discrimination, you simply chose black one day." line. Or if you prefer "you can simply go back to being white if things get hard, i cannot." line.

From Dolezal's point of view, she didn't just decide to be black one day. if you read the article, she tried to be "white" even when she was married to a black man, and she hated it. She didn't feel comfortable unless she was dressing like a black woman and braiding her hair. And there was years of personal evolution between attempting to live as a white woman and becoming a trans-black. Also, there's the interesting angle about being bisexual and physically attracted to black women.

It's a fair point that she could go back to being white if shit got real, but that shouldn't totally negate her sense of identity. Lots of mixed-race blacks can "pass" as white if shit gets real too.

She didn’t feel comfortable unless she was dressing like a black woman and braiding her hair.

It's an affectation, Hazel.

Um, yeah... no.
It's not an "affectation" when you are convincing enough that other people actually think you are black, and so do you.

Yes, it's an affectation. It's not less of one because she successfully snookered people. And, no, she didn't convince herself. She knew perfectly well it was an act.

She's white and grew up in Montana. What she knew of blacks was limited to her own adoptive siblings, whose attachment to the larger population of blacks would have been weak because from the time they were toddlers they lived in a small town in Montana. She was in her late teens when these youngsters were added to the family.

Her family has a distinct profile - an evangelical mission culture. She had to decide where she stood with all that and she had to be willing to take the loss of status in the larger society which comes from maintaining evangelical affiliations. It's ordinarily a poignant set of dilemmas. It's grotesquely funny when you make a clown out of yourself (as the children of prominent evangelicals sometimes do).

She continues to maintain that she is black, so if we take her at her word, she is convinced she is black.

Why would you 'take her word'?

"She continues to maintain that she is black, so if we take her at her word, she is convinced she is black."'

That just makes her delusional. If she maintained that she was Japanese, should I be expected to take her at her word? If the Japanese government refused to recognized her being Japanese, would they be wrong? How far should we take this charade? There's reality and the lie. Conflating the two is Orwellian.

I think it plausible that a white person could be ethnically Japanese, if they studied Japanese culture, and immersed themselves in it long enough. Did you see 'Silence' ?

I think it plausible that a white person could be ethnically Japanese, if they studied Japanese culture, and immersed themselves in it long enough. Did you see ‘Silence’ ?

Yeah, well she didn't grow up in Japan. Or on the South Side of Chicago. Or in West Baltimore. Or in Bed-Stuy. Or in Mississippi. She had the biography she had in 2000, not someone else's.

She grew up with four black siblings, and then immediately upon going to college spent all of her time immersed in the black community.

The siblings were all under the age of 4 when they were adopted (at least one was an infant) and had scant connection to urban black society (or what's left of black belt society). She attended an evangelical college in which the black population might be 1/4 of the total.

+1 for giving us "Trans-Black"

In a culture that becomes post-enlightened, social status is expressed by moral superiority. So going trans-black in an attempt to climb the social-ladder is extreme, but indeed a natural evolution.

As with safe-spacing, our culture rewards claiming moral high-ground with a free-pass for acting in the most a-moral ways. Which is why the left isn't represented by the working-class anymore but by the class of the easily triggered. Hence most leftist activists come across as douches. Thus Trump.

Except she didn't do it to climb the social ladder. She did it because she didn't feel comfortable in mainstream white society and sought social acceptance from blacks instead.

Except she didn’t do it to climb the social ladder.

Oh, yes she did.

Ah , your brilliant powers of psychoanalysis allow you to read her mind, eh?

I don't need to 'read her mind'. You need to observe her behavior and her brother's while understanding the effect of evangelical affiliations on social standing.

But the "I endured a lifetime of discrimination" difference doesn't quite work for gender since a sizeable number of the transgendered are men transitioning to the putatively more discriminated against gender. Why should women accept these people who got to be men for some substantial period of their upbringing? The answer appears to be that there was a *different* form of discrimination before, when these psychological females were discriminated against for being not male enough as children. This is similar to the disapproval some black children get from other black children for "acting white," but there appears to be (so far as I know) no equivalent stigma for a white child "acting black." Even if there were, it appears to have no relevance to Ms. Dolezal's somewhat bizarre upbringing.

"This is similar to the disapproval some black children get from other black children for “acting white,” but there appears to be (so far as I know) no equivalent stigma for a white child “acting black.”

I don't know if there is now, but when I was a kid, I'd hear people called "wigger" for being white kids who tried to "act black." It wasn't a term of social approval.

Thanks. You taught me something today. But while "acting white" has its own Wikipedia page and a scholarly study by Roland Fryer appearing on its first Google page, the best I could find on "wigger" was http://www.popmatters.com/column/harris060313/ which while certainly interesting, suggests a lower-level cultural phenomenon.

I seem to recall it gaining a little more steam when Eminem became popular. But I also am pretty sure I recall hearing it a few times before then. Probably from kids and parents in equal measure. And not all that many times.

It was definitely a cultural phenomenon of the lower classes, and one that would likely be applied to someone who wasn't going to rise much. Whereas "acting white" would also be a phenomenon of the lower classes, but might be applied to black kids who were smart and good in school, so that it would be something experienced by some of the black middle and upper middle class.

I definitely remember the word wigger from elementary school, it was certainly widely known. At first my mom thought it was another word for n***** and freaked out when she heard my brother using it, we were baffled until we figured it out and explained what it meant and then she didn't care.

On one of George Carlin's records (the one with the "seven words you can't say on television"), he talks about growing up in "white Harlem" next to "black Harlem." As a teenager, he and his white friends tried to "act black" because blacks were so much cooler. They didn't want to be boring white bread.

She grew up in an evangelical household with parents who take it quite seriously. Nothing bizarre about that. David Koresh was bizarre.

It doesn't seem to occur to people here that she and her college-teacher brother might have been on a status-quest.

She grew up in an evangelical household, that lived off the land in a remote mountain cabin in Montana. That's pretty wierd.

Hazel, do you fancy you and Bryan Caplan are normal?

Lots of people have atypical upbringings. Her mother and father are unusual in that they elected to be less comfortable than they otherwise might have been. That's not the sort of 'weird' that does the world harm.

You're right. I probably was too hasty in my characterization of her upbringing as "bizarre." Let me amend to "atypical in today's culture," leaving open the possibility of bizarre if I were to learn more about it.

I definitely had an atypical upbringing. It probably has something to do with why I also (like Dolezal) do not identify greatly with mainstream white culture. Thus, I can certainly understand how a person like her, who emerged into the world at 18 from this strange upbringing, might feel alienated from white culture and seek comfort in the company of African-Americans, who are also alienated from it and with whom she already had some experience of being "family". I completely understand why she might feel more at home with black people than with white people, and come to become part of their culture and community and thus identify as black.

" I completely understand why she might feel more at home with black people than with white people, and come to become part of their culture and community and thus identify as black."

I'm pretty confident that few white people have much say in who is President of a typical NAACP chapter.

do not identify greatly with mainstream white culture. Thus, I can certainly understand how a person like her, who emerged into the world at 18 from this strange upbringing, might feel alienated from white culture and seek comfort in the company of African-Americans, who are also alienated from it and with whom she already had some experience of being “family”

She shlepped halfway across the country to attend a small private college in Mississippi (which continues to promote itself as a Christian institution). Her brother attended a different such college in New York City (and one that hasn't yet lost its mojo, it being of fairly recent vintage). Then she decamps to Howard University (while he decamps to the University of Nebraska).

Here's a suggestion: she doesn't have an IQ deficit (at least not one that 85% of the population does not share). She's not seeking comfort from blacks because of 'alienation from white culture'. She's seeking self re-invention because she's embarrassed by her family. They way she did that has been to climb in a hole and keep digging. Michael Warner conjoined knocking about at the University of Wisconsin and JHU with knocking about in bathhouses. Laura Ortberg Turner and confederates are trying their hand at manufacturing a Christian dispensation which combines Episcopalian morals with evangelical taste. People do stupid things when they're addled by not being one of the cool kids.

She’s not seeking comfort from blacks because of ‘alienation from white culture’. She’s seeking self re-invention because she’s embarrassed by her family.

Can't it be both? People's motivations are often complex.

Also I fail to see how developing a lifelong love of, and identification with, black culture constitutes a "hole".

The thing is, really ... What she has achieved is AMAZING. Racial prejudice is something that many white people strive to overcome their entire lives. There's usually this impermeable barrier between whites and blacks in America that prevents real dialogue and community. An invisible social wall of polite segregation. And yet somehow she managed to cross that barrier - she walked past the white girls in the cafeteria and sat down with the black kids and that started a multi-year transformation of her identity. She immersed herself in black culture so completely that she became culturally black. That is an utterly unique and amazing achievement, in my opinion.

Also I fail to see how developing a lifelong love of, and identification with, black culture constitutes a “hole”.

She doesn't have a 'lifelong love' of it. She grew up in the Montana countryside. Listening to Brook Benton, reading Langston Hughes, attending AME Churches, and cooking vegetables in bacon drippings is not what she's known for. Settling in Harlem or Brownsville is not what she's known for either. Fartin' around Spokane and Coeur d'Alene pretending to be black is what she's known for. She was also married to a black man for a time. (May Britt never got the idea in her head she was black and neither did Lennie Hayton).

The thing is, really … What she has achieved is AMAZING. Racial prejudice is something that many white people strive to overcome their entire lives. There’s usually this impermeable barrier between whites and blacks in America that prevents real dialogue and community. An invisible social wall of polite segregation. And yet somehow she managed to cross that barrier – she walked past the white girls in the cafeteria and sat down with the black kids and that started a multi-year transformation of her identity. She immersed herself in black culture so completely that she became culturally black. That is an utterly unique and amazing achievement, in my opinion.

There's nothing AMAZING about eating lunch with blacks. Some of them are engaging conversationalists over a meal, some are not. There's nothing all that amazing about amateur method-acting either.

Your whole response is predicated on the assumption that she is lying about her self-identification as black. What makes you think that she actually thinks of herself as white and is just pretending? Is it so hard to believe that a white person could come to think of themself as black?

What makes you think that she actually thinks of herself as white and is just pretending?

I'm not an idiot and I don't play one on the internet.

Is it so hard to believe that a white person could come to think of themself as black?

Hard? Impossible

The line that Dolezal crossed may be one that cannot be identified out loud by the left: She was a fabulist engaged in actively combatting racial discrimination. She came to local attention, which blew up on her, by raising a fuss about bias-motivated crimes that, given that she is a fabulist, were probably hoaxes. Her advocacy was ultimately highly counter-productive for blacks in her community in a way that probably no one wants to talk about.

Personally I identify as a billionaire. Oddly enough the Aston Martin dealership disagrees.

Not surprised about the caskets. Kiwis make scots look like spendthrifts.

3. There's a lesson here, about life in general.

3 is a very sad story, on so many levels. I agree that not everything is to be believed from that (or any other) article in the Guardian (or any other newspaper), but the basic facts seem in accordance which what I have read elsewhere. But does anyone know on what ground she was fired from her position at her university? Did she get the position because of her supposed black race?

Re point 3, in both Russian and translated into English Pushkin always struck me as banal -- cliched characters and plots, though perhaps a deeper appreciation of the Russian language on my part might have helped me appreciate his place in the development of that language . That his reputation is at least partly built on political considerations might explain why he does not strike a native English speaker as all that great . As an aside, In the FSU smart people typically avoided the humanities because they were so politicized. Which is one reason why the FSU probably produced a disproportionate number of engineers, scientists, and mathematicians (& musicians & composers).

"both Russian and translated into English Pushkin always struck me as banal"

Most likely because your Russian is too poor. His prose is sublime and is anything but banal. His poetry is unrivaled in precision and economy and, at its best, extremely insightful. See: Little Tragedies, "The Feast in the Time of Plague" in particular.

2b. A little absurd to say the U.S. elected an "autocrat." Our President hasn't done anything unconstitutional to date, at least using the contemporary definition of what's "constitutional," as well as the examples of our past few presidents.

Yes, sure he didn't ;)

The signaling theory of lullaby s is itself a signal that the signallying theory has jumped the shark

3. The linked piece in The Guardian did zero elaboration on the types of porn that Dolezal was offered - or their respective reservation wages.
From a labor and behavioral economics perspective, it was lame. FT Alphaville could do much better. And hopefully they will.

She's nearly 40 and she's not that attractive. Why would anyone hire her to be a pole dancer?

Novelty. They could a build a revenge storyline around her involving 2 BBC's punishing her for pretending to be black. It would sell, mark my words. It'd kick off a new genre of porn: "ebony"

I didn't read the article, but the signal of a lullaby is clear: Go the f^%k to sleep!

2.b. I know many Koreans who emigrated from the North during the Korean War and then to the U.S. in the 1960s. There has been a definite dialect difference that has emerged between the Korean language they grew up speaking (and largely preserved unchanged in the U.S.) and the language spoken in South Korea today. Mostly, its temporal.

Imagine speaking 1950s English in any major U.S. city today. But, its a bit deeper than that. They have to strain a bit to follow ordinary conversation, encountering new words, new phrases and constructions, and new pronunciations.

This is with somewhat regular telephone conversations and letters to the old country, watching videos filmed in South Korea, and visiting South Korea from time to time, although none of these with daily regularity. Their kin who remained in the North are more isolated from South Korean language development, so the gap there is probably a bit greater.

As an analogy, imagine a very thick Irish accent juxtaposed against a Southern California Valley Girl accent.

I knew a Scottish semester abroad student once and I could barely understand a word he was saying

Imagine speaking 1950s English in any major U.S. city today.

I had a mother and a father whose English solidified earlier than that. Perfectly comprehensible. You'll see three major differences: casual profanity which was not used outside stag settings until about 1975, conversational junk and filler that the pre-war cohorts did not use (uh, like), and the demise of regional and subcultural accents (especially among the bourgeoisie). The patrician dulcets you used to hear have completely disappeared. None of the changes have improved comprehensibility.

Dolezal is a striver caught up in a complacent class morality tale?

She thought she could 'escape' from being white, but now she can't escape from having been caught not being black.

hahahahahaha +!0

#4...I don't see a lot of Churchill in Wilders.

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