Monday assorted links

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3. I think I just got womansplained

Se did not point out the basic difference between saying "speaking as a physicist" and "speaking as a women" is that physicists have an expertise in some area. When you say "speaking as a woman" you are only saying that you think your opinion to be more valuable because you have female genitalia. That only implies that you are prejudiced against men.

There are without question some topics where a woman would have special insight (motherhood, makeup, etc) just as there are some where a man would (fatherhood, beard shaving, etc). No prejudice involved on either end.

But of course the preamble isn’t used as often in conversations about beards and breastfeeding, to for example to share a medical fact the listener might be unaware of (like beard itchiness or ingrown hairs, or milk expression on schedule) because thats not how its usually used.

I call bullsh!t. There are NO topics where ANY (all) woman will have special insight. If she believes that she is able to NOT speak as a woman 100% of the time, I welcome her to try to prove that. She is (by definition) a woman. All the speach she utters is "as a woman", in the literal sense. If she was in drag, or otherwise not gender identified/identifiable, then she might say that to inform her audience if SHE felt it relevant information. On the other hand, she claims that sometimes the "managerial" mode is appropriate. That she is "justified" to steer (manage) a conversation because of her gender. Rubbish. I can imagine no circumstances which I would agree that all women should "manage" and no man should manage a conversation. (the corollary of a woman managing a conversation is that all men in the conversation (and all other women as well) should defer to her.) It is a political act. Don't get me wrong, I can think of conversations where someone 'should' (perhaps) manage the conversation to avoid land mines. But it would be because of a special knowledge of the emotional impact the conversation might have (or the political/social consequences) and not because of her genitalia. As I said, I can think of no case where it would always be justified for a woman (or man) to take charge. The converse is not true, there probably are situations where a given person should never take charge. I can think of many examples where DJT would be on that list.

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Make up is not a female subject - ask any actor.

Assuming the movie was made by Hollywood, there has never seen a single leading male actor that is not using make up.

Expertly, obviously.

LOL is this you thinking you're being clever? Adorable.

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First - no, because the actors don’t apply their own?

Second - it remains, the odds are, what, >90% that woman uses make up daily, and close to 0% that a man does.

I eagerly await your Wikipedia link on makeup and how it differs across culture and time.

actors don't apply their own...it is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt.

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COOOOCCCCK

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I sorry for your loss; i’m sure it was her, not you

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Ironically, the author gives as an example of informational standing a situation where a woman may know that, when she refrains from drinking, people may assume that she is pregnant. I guess men must be unaware of, when they see a woman refrain from drinking, how often they assume that she is pregnant. Thank goodness that men have women to tell them what men assume about women.

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Right out of the gate "If I attempt to control a conversation..."

If that ain't it in a nutshell.

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I'm not sure why an American-made film making fun of Singapore would be expected to do well in China, unless you happen to think that all Asians are the same.

A lot of ideologically driven people conceive of humanity as a sort of idealized, notional blob. QED, "Asian" is supposed to be a logical category of everybody from Beirut to Tokyo.

And that explicitly stereotypes a continent that contains 60% of the world's population.

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Right, this is the flipside to articles pointing out that movies and other things that upset Asian-Americans (especially activists) don't upset Asians in Asia. Crazy Rich Asians was written by an Asian-American and made for Asian-Americans.

It's fine if it appeals to Asian-Americans and not people in their ancestral countries, that doesn't make it bad any more than movies that do the reverse, whether by using traditional tropes or by changing the ethnic background of characters when adapting a story originally from Asia.

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#2 Retail-based entertainment

#3 Man...appeals to identity right out of the gate. No, your being a woman doesn't give you any kind of special insight. No, your "dominating the conversation" doesn't mean your right and could just make you a giant jerk. No, your attempt to "lean in" could and can be inappropriately timed and inappropriate in general. These rules apply to women just as much as they apply to men. And yes, the consequences for breaking them should be the same.

#4 Hollywood is thinking more and more they've got that market figured out. I think they're going to be unpleasantly surprised as the century unfolds, doubly so because they're banking on it being the consumer market of importance moving forward.

I think number 3 is transparently esoteric. Callard is a philosopher, and here is what she says about philosophy:

Philosophers place special value on a specific kind of conversation — those in which strict equality between participants makes possible the no-holds-barred argumentative warfare that is our bread and butter. We think that when people refute us, they are doing us a favor. And refutation does not fit comfortably in demographically managed conversation: If you are the manager, my refuting you undermines my acceptance of your managerial standing, and if I am the manager, refuting you might well constitute an abuse of it.

Now take what she says about a physicist having a conversation with a lay person, but replace physicist with philosopher:

When the philosopher assumes managerial standing over the conversation, she is saying that she cannot sincerely converse as an equal with you. She could have a farce of a conversation in which she nods along while inwardly groaning, or she can give you some instruction. Given the sad state of your education in logical thought and argumentation, these are her only options.

So Callard has laid out a pretty clear argument as to why philosophers cannot have honest conversations with lay people about justice and human excellence; those conversations, going back to Socrates, are ones where people have always demanded they be “demographically managed”. Of course, those who buy into the whole “demographically managed conversation” thing won’t even recognize the way they are being condescended to. By the way, Callard is a specialist in Plato, and is a professor at the University of Chicago, Leo Strauss’ school.

I strongly disagree. Callard has given us an excellent example of a philosopher who SHOULD know better, but doesn't seem to. 2nd Order prepositional calculus includes logic such as All X are Y and Some X are Y. She confuses the two. Her argument can either be taken as All women X or Some women X. (It should be obvious that not all women in all conversations "should" (or perhaps "would find it useful") provide information to the listeners. (This would include those women who don't speak the language, or know nothing about the topic or lack the capacity to articulate their information). It should also be obvious that the same thing is true of managing a conversation, that some people shouldn't (for a variety of reasons). So we're left with "Some women X."
or more often, in a given conversation, in a given social context, with a given audience Ms. Z should X. Which doesn't seem very interesting to me. IOW, any attempt to slap categorical rules on such conversations is doomed. (and frankly, I found her division of the types of "speaking as X" into those two categories to be fairly ill-considered. But generally philosophers are very smart eggs, so perhaps I missed the obvious there. At the least I'd add a third and fourth categories: 3. Shut down the conversation 4. Manipulate the conversation (to attain some objective). I'd argue that these are sufficiently different from managing the conversation to merit their own categories (as well as their own considerations about when they're appropriate). Finally, we all speak as individuals. Men speak as men. Women speak as women. Often if I say I am speaking as a scientist, I imply what I say might be DIFFERENT if I were speaking while wearing one of my other hats. I guess that makes 5 different "types" of "Speaking as a X" conversational gambits. (And that's just off the top of my head.)

The whole point of esoteric writing is to put out bullish-t arguments that please the masses while leaving enough clues for people who think logically to figure out what you are actually arguing. My contention is that Callard put forward what appears to be an obviously flawed argument while actually laying out a much stronger, but implied counter argument. Collard makes it very clear that she is a philosopher who values no holds barred discussion with other philosophers with zero “demographic management”, and she wouldn’t consider someone speaking in that way to be speaking as a philosopher. That is, in her own profession, which she views as seeking the truth, she sees no value and no place for “demographically managed conversations”, except when teaching students who aren’t even philosophers. She says a lot of other stuff about that type of talk, but it mostly boils down to the idea that outside of a lot of contexts, we use language for purposes other than pursuing truth (i.e. non-philosophically). So then she is straying into the ethics of speech acts, but she doesn’t seem very committed or interested in really thinking these things through, and I believe that is intended as a clue. Her vision doesn’t seem very different than what can be attempted to Plato in the Republic; you tell some noble lies to the public to maintain some semblance of public order and an approximation of justice, and then in private the philosophers can actually make their real arguments. She is basically saying that for political reasons, professional philosophers in the West cannot have open discussion about issues that touch on politics, justice and ethics that non-philosophers would readily understand, because that would upset there desire to “demographically” dominate the profession.

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2. This is consistent with the view that successful retail today is about the faux rich (e.g., the $7 cup of coffee and the expensive gym to work off the calories from the $7 cup of coffee) and the restaurants (millennials can't make a cup of coffee much less cook a meal). And restaurants are showing up everywhere, including in retail stores and car dealerships.

"(millennials can't make a cup of coffee much less cook a meal"

...why back in my day .....

Isn't pretty much every barista in the country a millenial?

Millennials are entering their mid-30s. Most professions are heavily staffed by millennials and will be increasingly so; pigeonholing millennials into this stereotype of feckless entitlement has never been accurate and gets more inaccurate by the day.

I know I was teasing rayward. Way to kill my joke.

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#3 Yeah, no s***. CRA is a Western movie filled with Western values. Besides the faces on the screen, there isn't anything Asian about it. Some influencers wanted to say it was evidence of Chinese culture finally breaking into Hollywood -- perhaps. That is, only after Chinese cultured kowtowed to Hollywood norms. CRA is a traditional Hollywood romcom in the vein of Meet the Parents. The protagonist was Western, the antagonists were Confucian, and in the end the Westerner out-Chineses the Chinese people. Yeah, that's going to go over well in China... So what's so remarkable about CRA? Exhibition of a small group of elite Asians? So did The King and I.

My favorite Chinese film is Jet Li's 'Fearless.' The penultimate fight scenes involving multi-national opponents are terrific:

The British and the French fighters are treacherous fops. Perfidious!

The American is a huge oaf named Hercules O'Brien. Huo executes an immaculate throw, then saves O'Brien at the last second from impaling his head on a nail. They raise each others' fists in a gesture of mutual respect!

There's a greasy, obese Japanese sitting at the table with all the mutton-chopped colonials in their top hats. Imperialist running dog!

Noble Han are guardians of diverse Asian peoples!
______________________________________________________

The 21st century is going to be a hoot.

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CRA is sort of the same old romcom except sort of repackaged in woke identity politics, but only on the surface.

I enjoyed it, I thought it was good, but the point seemed to be that Asian countries are bad

TC loved the movie because he's a cuck trying to seduce good, hardworking Americans into the PC
cuck lifestyle.

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3. Agnes Callard on “speaking as a woman.” (NYT)

Speaking as a redneck who evolved from the Kentucky Blue Ridge mountains, sure I use m demographic background a lot. Sometimes I speak as a monkey's uncle, but always speak as an east African plains great ape. I often go with 'little brown person', that is always fun. But mostly I represent myself as an enabler of botnets, automated network of bots collating and sharing information, as in singularity.

Ha. Maybe you should submit an op-Ed to the Times. I’m sure their readers would love it.

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3. Speaking as a woman, as a physicist, or as a whatever is meant to convey perspective; after all, none of us has the exact same experience, which is why communication can be so difficult. I pointed out in a recent comment that while we may speak in the same language, we don't hear in the same language. Thus, when Ronald Reagan criticized government as the problem, what the fine folks down here in the South heard was confirmation that racist views were not only acceptable but mainstream. Did Reagan intend that the words he spoke would be heard that way? Probably not. Rather than "speaking as a woman" (or whatever), we ought to say "hearing as a woman."

Racist views are indeed not only acceptable but mainstream. What isn't acceptable is being mean to people.

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#3. Great analysis. So there's two issues here: "informational standing" which is pretty unproblematic. Belonging to a particular demographic means you have experiences which inform your perspective. You know things other people don't know. It's "managerial standing" - the right to direct the conversation and decide who speaks when, which is controversial, and I'm not sure she makes a good case for it here. If the problem is that structural inequality has ossified group relationships, why is it not possible for normal rules of conversations to restore the equal standing? More importantly, it doesn't necessarily mean that the conversation must be controlled by the disrespected group. It seems to me that the situation calls for a neutral third party to manage the conversation, as in having a moderator to enforce rules of order. Because the topic of conversation is in fact often about whether the disrespected group is in fact really disrespected, having the disrespected group attempt to unilaterally assert managerial standing is in some sense begging the question. In other words, if someone asserts some sort of victim status and therefore claims managerial standing on that basis, for the other party to respect that standing would be to acknowledge that, yes, that person is indeed a victim and their claim to amangerial standing is legitimate. But that doesn't work because that's what the whole argument is about - whether that person really has a legitimate claim to victimization or not.

"Belonging to a particular demographic means you have experiences which inform your perspective. You know things other people don't know."

Gender's probably the least meaningful demographic characteristic that that statement is true for, I would say. I many not be a woman, but I know plenty of them and have lived with one for several years now. I think I get what they're about pretty well, at this point! I'd say I probably know less about being a Mongolian or a soybean farmer.

Do the same people who think the perspective is uninteresting *and* that sex differences are (in part) hard-wired?

Speaking only for myself, yes. "What is it like to be a bat?" is a question worth pondering because bats are so different from us. Men and women, by contrast, lead pretty darn similar lifestyles, even if the differences between them are important and largely immutable.

It sounds like those immutable differences are insurmountable for them, but not for you.

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Related:

https://bloggingheads.tv/videos/54248?in=00:01

Interesting the way Dr. Fleischman consciously or unconsciously flirts with the camera.

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Cock Piss Partridge! Cock Piss Partridge!!!

Are you having a moment, hun?

Ah-HAAAA! "TWAT"

Damn Limey Humor!

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sally notsobright (from new York)- I want what I want
and
what I wanna is
a brand-new still in the bag
newyorker.com tote bag
but I don't wanna actually read the new yorker
and also
im too tired to stand up
it is what is
ama- sally (from new york)it sounds like you wanna be some sorta
professional tautologist1 who gets paid a lotta money for saying stuff that doesn't actually mean anything

this is just the sorta stuff that makes the American medical association just wanna say
fuck you bonesawbensalmaon and kick him/her
real hard in the nads

its not racism or nationalism
its because of the creepy stuff with the bonesaws

1the saying of the same thing twice in different words, generally considered to be a fault of style (e.g., they arrived one after the other in succession).

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"Being a physicist gives a person a certain standing in conversations that have something to do with physics. So why shouldn’t being a woman give me a certain standing in conversations that have something to do with gender?"

1. Because physicists are rigorously trained to be experts in physics.

2. Because physics is an objective pursuit with little room for subjectivity; whereas gender is driven by experience.

3. Because a physicist has no more standing in "natural science" than does a biologist; likewise, a woman has no more standing in "gender" than a man.

Trying to invert the hierarchy doesn't somehow make hierarchy less pernicious.

This is sort of beside my main point, but there are going to be situations where women are just going to know stuff that men don't know. Like what breastfeeding feels like. Or how to insert a tampon properly.

Do we have a problem in this country where men are insufficiently deferential in tampon insertion conversations?

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OK, so in conversations with men about what breastfeeding feels like then one can say "speaking as a woman" to indicate some form of expertise. One thing is that "speaking as a women" doesn't provide any information since it is obvious to know whether someone is a women just by looking. So it is redundant in a way that speaking as a physicist is not.

'One thing is that "speaking as a women" doesn't provide any information'

Particularly as it is only women that have breast fed which know what breast feeding is like - many women, including a number of mothers, have never breast fed.

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That's a good point.

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#3 +1

well really +1000 just a great read.

Had to scroll down here to find someone talking about it that clearly read it.

> Belonging to a particular demographic means you have experiences which inform your perspective.

Informational standing, I think, is even softer than that: "I think I have new facts that you can understand but you don't have, yet"

Not "I am a physicist and know things that you couldn't know without being a physicist" (or "I am a woman and know things that a man simply cannot know")

The second version being what people find objectionable -- "I have private knowledge that you can't ever know (or by extension refute) -- you must accept my word as truth" (n.b. I could become a physicist but I can't become a woman)

I agree with you that the author doesn't really make a very strong claim for "Managerial Standing"

> When I adopt managerial standing on the grounds of some demographic fact, I am saying that given the difference between us with respect to gender, race, sexual orientation, or socio-economic status, we cannot converse as equals — moreover, that in order for us to converse, you have to allow me to be in some way in charge of the conversation. You have to hand me the reins.

That is: Your Managerial Standing on grounds of demographic fact is valid when (for demographic reasons) I believe you are not my equal.

The author then talks about "subconsciously instantiating ossified group relations of disrespect" -- which I think is the weakest point. I'm pretty sure that the concept of subconscious bias is empirically debunked. I'm also pretty sure that anyone can make just a little bit of effort to engage with a person in good faith. Also -- what if I'm blinded to the demographics a person belongs to?

Can the rape victim call managerial standing on me, on the basis of my entrenched disrespect for rape victims, given that I don't know they are a rape victim? Clearly, no.

My read is that if it's at all possible for me to respect you as an equal despite demographics then claiming managerial standing on the basis of demographics isn't valid.

I also like your begging the question criticism. If I am "Speaking as a smurf..." and you yield to me, you affirm the entrenched disrespect of smurfs. When you reject me, you disrespect me as a smurf.

Contrast all of that to the managerial standing a physicist gets when talking about physics "Speaking as a physicist, let me direct this conversation so that you can get more use from it"

I do really like the breakdown by the author as to what's actually going on when people claim standing. To me it seems like the validity of it boils down to whether or not one thinks insurmountable subconscious disrespect exists.

Even if insurmountable subconscious disrespect exists, it's not clear why a neutral moderator wouldn't be sufficient to enforce equal standing in a conversation. Or why asserting managerial standing would be any better.
If there's no neutral party available to act as a moderator, it hard to see how asserting managerial standing would be respected. If there are people willing to recognize managerial standing on the basis of demographic membership, then why can't those same people serve as neutral moderators?

Cock Piss Partridge!

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Great analysis, Hazel Meade. I'm just not sure why you give that compliment to Agnes Callard's piece while you decisively refute its main point.

I liked how she teased apart "informational" and "managerial" standing.

Cock Piss Partridge

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I didn't read it - much more inclined to read Hazel's gloss - but this talk of needing a third party in order to have conversations is putting me in mind of how often people need a third party to produce a baby these days.

Well, sometimes two sides are so intransigently opposed that a mediator really is needed - see Israelis and Palestinians.
I don't think that's really the case for most men and most women, but if you put a die hard MRA activist in the same room as a radical feminist, yeah, you might need one in order for that conversation to be productive.

Well, I appreciated Jimmy Carter after I read "13 Days in September"* (I think it was September), though from that account one might conclude that his role was forcing, begging, people to remain in the room (or rather, not so much in the room as in the compound), separately plying them with compliments and perhaps half-truths, and being humbly willing to be That Guy, whom both parties could unite, at least, in finding annoying. This actually comes across as heroic in the book, even if his motivations emerged chiefly from a lot of time spent Bible-reading.

But since that time I'd say the success of the mediators in the Middle East suggest they might reasonably be classed with marriage counselors, whose job obviously has little or nothing to do with keeping people married - quite the opposite.

*A book I read because I wanted to look at the pictures of Camp David**, one of those places I've (obviously) never been that I'm yet thoroughly nostalgic for. I sincerely hope it's a place that could hold no interest for DJT, so hopefully he won't feel the need to do it up, or his wife either, whose decorating taste has shown she knows the old gods hunger, and wishes to please them.

**I learned from that book that Carter, in his ascetic way, keenly wanted to sell Camp David, but a side result of the successful talks was, he came around to the place.

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I was surprised at no. 3. I was expecting something a bit more insightful.

Instead we get this:

"One could avoid demographically managed conversations by restricting one’s interlocutors. You might think that a philosopher would be inclined to do this. Philosophers place special value on a specific kind of conversation — those in which strict equality between participants makes possible the no-holds-barred argumentative warfare that is our bread and butter. We think that when people refute us, they are doing us a favor. And refutation does not fit comfortably in demographically managed conversation: If you are the manager, my refuting you undermines my acceptance of your managerial standing, and if I am the manager, refuting you might well constitute an abuse of it.

But philosophers are also teachers of philosophy, charged with producing the next generation of philosophers. We not only conduct but also induct people into such conversations, and this means that we are interested in the porousness of the boundary that surrounds them. We don’t choose our students, we don’t choose our society, and we can’t always choose our conversations.

For this reason, I think all of us — even philosophers — should be prepared, at times, to accept demographic claims of managerial standing; but I also think we should aspire to navigate each of those conversations with the kind of intellectual excellence, respect and sensitivity that would allow them to become the full-fledged, unmanaged conversations they aspire to be."

The clear Straussian reading of this is that philosophers shouldn't talk honestly to the masses, because the masses don't the have the proper constitution to engage in philosophy, which is why they need "demographically managed" conversation. That is then followed by something along the lines of "we need to be gentle with the young, so they don't execute us, but also so that we can seduce and corrupt some of them." Again, really old hat. What I am disappointed in is that there isn't any hook or lure here. I don't see any vision, or any hint of a vision, of what might be seductive about philosophy. Why should anyone want to have true philosophic conversations? Hell, why does Callard want that?

To what extent in the US today is the acquisition of self-consciousness a matter of integrating subjective states into social matrices, how much a matter of incorporating vast and dominant social narratives into subjective experience without being overwhelmed by categories and taxonomies of thought, discourse, and affect that many subjects today are finding alien and alienating?

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Callard: "It is also important to note that not every case of demographic managerial standing will be predicated on injustice."

Since the most contentious claims to "demographic managerial standing" are those based on a claim to victim status and therefore to honor and restitution, I suspect that the draw of philosophy might have do with pursuing some clarity as to whether such claims about justice are warranted or coherent. And that's likely connected with your "old hat" points.

So there is an implicit criticism in the article of “demographic managerial standing”, that I didn’t see. There isn’t any real honor in being a victim; no one (sane) really wants to be victimized, and no one would look for victims for advice on how to live solely based on their victimhood. So when you respect someone “speaking as a woman” or speaking as a “victim group x” there is certainly a political/justice component, but also that person is performing a kind of self-abasement. They aren’t speaking as an expert, they aren’t speaking as someone who has achieved some form of excellence and demands to be recognized for that excellence. It is an implicit admission that they aren’t excellent, and don’t have grounds to claim what they are asking for based on achievement. That isn’t to say that arguments based on dignity/equality mean nothing, but philosophers, like people in many disciplines, ultimately honor and respect excellence.

I agree with the gist of what you're saying, but I think the way people refer to victims as "survivors" supports my claim that honor and dignity have somehow become mixed up in this. I suppose the most charitable reading is that people who talk this way aren't honoring being victimized so much as the endurance of suffering or overcoming of it. This is the experience that purportedly grants these individuals privileged conversational status. A performance of self-abasement seems off the mark to me, at least as a description of the self-understanding of the people who talk this way, although it could plausibly be characterized that way from the outside.

I was thinking more that it looks like self-abatement from the outside. An example might be two actresses from the me too movement. One is known primarily for the credible accusations she made, while for another, making those credible accusations was the right thing to do and took some courage, but otherwise she is known for her success at the box office and acting chops. Although I do agree with you that there is a component in which making those “demographic” demands would be considered thumotic, and standing up for yourself and demanding recognition when you are in the right could certainly be viewed as virtuous. I definitely do see more clearly how Callard is inviting readers to think about justice, and to position philosophy as the pursuit of the truth about justice, which as you say is part of that ”old hat” type stuff. It is interesting to see an analytic philosopher go that course, but given her specialty in Plato, but totally out of the blue.

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#3: When the physicist assumes managerial standing over the conversation, she is saying that she cannot sincerely converse as an equal with you. She could have a farce of a conversation in which she nods along while inwardly groaning, or she can give you some instruction. Given the sad state of your education in physics, these are her only options.

A woman physicist!? Lulz! Sorry, but their deficits in spatial reasoning skills render them unfit for such a vocation. I'm all for hypotheticals in philosophy, but they have to be somewhat realistic to be useful.

^Average MR commenter

That essay didn't deserve any better response than my obvious troll comment. In fact, that was a pretty good troll comment, if I do say so myself, and now I kind of wish I'd saved it for a more opportune time.

Wish your mom had saved it for a more opportune time.

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Cock Piss Partridge

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Speaking as a human being, #3 was a load of hot air. She can dominate the convo all she wants because I'm not going to waste my breath, just smile and nod.

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#3: I'm not sure about the distinction she makes. But there is some value in talking about "informational standing" that kind of exposes the asymmetries at play in society. If you were to "speak as a man" about male-female relationships, or the experience of being a man, then in general I think there would be still held a social norm that males do not have actually have a superior set of information on that. That is female "informational standing" exists, while male "informational standing" is held not to.

In general, it's held that, if anything, men have an inferior understanding of their experiences(!) in any circumstance, when they contradict indirect models of those experiences that are stated by women. Similarly with race - it's generally held that minority groups have an equal or superior understanding of what it is that the white majority says, or thinks, or believes, or means, on a conscious or subconscious level.

There are probably a limited set of circumstances where being male or white can be taken to give information superiority... but these seem are pretty much only when they are used to confirm self deprecatory statements "As a man, I think we are more foolish than women, because of our pride..." or "We whites are particularly silly or absurd or guilty because..." and so on.

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#4: Right on prediction, that Chinese will be less interested in Western-East Asian cultural hybrids (Singaporean or Chinese-American) than we are.

Hopefully this will lead to a bit more reflection on the "2% of the US population should be headlining a waaay larger bunch of movies, and if say there's not enough audience, then screw you 'cos we got Asia too" exuberance, and a more balanced assessment of the commercial strengths and weaknesses.

("Speaking as" (#3) someone who actually *likes* films about these particular cultural hybrids, but who was turned off by the rah-rah culture war triumphalism around CRA).

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#1. If only there were a way to limit visitors to only those people who truly valued their visits...

Lottery system for access. A random portion of applicants seeking access are sent to the camps.

Alternatively, use money and prices.

Alternatively alternatively, make the mountain taller and harder to get to. Use the people you put in camps from option 1 as labor and the money you got from option 2 to finance it.

Yep, that's what I was getting at.

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Instagrammers value the hell out of those photos/posts, and many of them would pay to get them. We're not looking at valuing access to the areas vs. not valuing them, we're looking at valuing them for the right reasons. Which does not seem like a great judgment call for the government to be making.

Right. The market should be making that judgment, based on a pricing system. And as far as the article makes clear, the problem isn't that there are a bunch of people taking photos of lakes "for the wrong reason," the problem is merely that there are so many people taking photos of lakes that it's compromising the relative virginity of the ecosystem.

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“Speaking as a...”

It’s a claim for special status any way you cut it, and operates as either a thinly veiled insult, or seeking exemption from conversational norms by virtue of their special insights.

When the status is non-obvious it’s slighlty more acceptable, since it explains perspective. When the status is obvious it merely serves as a preemptive strike on rebuttal

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Most people on this blog are so beta that they ARE women

Foetorem extremae latrinae

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1: The past couple of weeks there' s also been a debate about a hamburger place in Portland OR that some blogger or e-journalist or whatever proclaimed to have the best hamburgers in the US. There must be hundreds of such lists floating around but I guess his voice carries more weight because the place was inundated with customers with resulting long lines, slow service, bad customer experiences, etc. After a few months it closed and has not re-opened.

Did the crushing flood of customers ruin the restaurant? There's been several chapters in the debate and various revelations, a recent take is here:
https://www.newyorker.com/culture/annals-of-gastronomy/its-never-just-about-the-burger

Such is life in the age of the web and social media.

I lean toward the view that people tend to be lemmings and the internet and social media simply amplify that effect, be it tourists rushing to the Tetons or customers rushing to the burger place Stanich's. Yosemite had to create ways to deal with crowds decades before the web was created. There are places in Portland that I avoid because the lines are too darned long and I know that in almost all cases the food will not be worth the wait; it might be 1% better than the place a block away that has no line. And there are ways to avoid the crowds in national parks.

But I do grant the possibility that social media have created not just a quantitative difference in lemming-like herd behavior but a qualitative difference as well. Doxing e.g., or that intruder who attacked Tyler while he was teaching a class.

P.S. Hints about avoiding crowds in national parks: similar to going to the nearby restaurant that is 99% as good, go to a similar but less famous national park: Canyonlands instead of Arches, North Cascades instead of Olympics.

And more importantly, be willing to wake up early and most importantly be willing to walk. The inverse square law of hiking is this: the number of people that you encounter on the trail varies inversely with the square of the distance from the parking lot -- and with the cube of the altitude gain from the parking lot. Get about 3 miles from the parking lot and chances are pretty good that you'll be walking alone. (Obviously with some exceptions

P.P.S. And despite living in Portland for several years, and despite it being on occasional "best burger in Portland" lists, I'd never heard of Stanich's until the spate of articles about its closing. It's still possible to ignore the lemmings (unless of course Stanich's happened to be your favorite neighborhood burger place).

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Or go to "almost national parks" - popping into my head from the limited part of the country I'm familiar with: Chiracauhuas (sp?), Gila wilderness, Canyon de Chelly, Chaco Canyon, Escalante, Mogollon Rim.
The Big Thicket of Texas. Palo Duro SP.
Petit Jean State Park, AK. The Ouachitas.
The national forest in the vicinity of the Smokies, NC side? - full of incredible waterfalls.
The Natchez Trace. People drive it but nobody much stops at the sites.
Big Cypress preserve, FL.
Platt NP, the "lost" nat. park of OK.
Scott's Bluff. Very peaceful, and hilarious in a Coen-esque way.

Anyway, among NPs, come to Guadalupe Mtns. and you need never speak to anyone at all. And there's a most wonderful swimming hole on the NM side (you have to go around).

According to this view, the disaster was a complex failure, involving not only negligence on part of the captain, but also inadequate safety procedures, poor evacuation procedures, communication failures, and technical defects (such as faulty water-tight doors).[34] On May 31, 2016, an Italian appeals court upheld the 16-year prison sentence

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I got extra solitude by going to Guadalupe NP in January -- just as a snowstorm was about to hit. I was the only person in the campground until a ranger drove by and essentially said "what are you doing here, it's about to snow". I had a sleeping bag rated to 0F plus warm clothes so I wasn't worried. But I figured the snow would make the hike up to the summit too slippery and dicey so I just did a hike in one of the canyons and attempted to flee the snow by going to the Chiracahuas. (Where I did another hike, also in the snow, and then fled to Bisbee where it also snowed but as a result I was the only person who showed up for the tour of the copper mine. Finally went to Tucson where at last there was no snow.)

But Guadalupe's bustling with neighbors (meaning Carlsbad Caverns and El Paso) compared to Big Bend NP, where I've never been. Talk about remote.

I've been to several of the places on your list; have not visited the ones in Arkansas but I know there is some excellent scenery there, maybe one of the most under-rated states for outdoor scenery.

Have not been to but have heard of Gila Mountain Wilderness, Mogollon Rim, Big Cypress.

Had not heard of Big Thicket, Palo Duro, Platt NP. Had heard the name Scotts Bluff, had no idea there's a national monument there!

I plan to go to Texas when the solar eclipse goes through, will visit Big Bend for sure and will look into those other places you mention. Will probably return to Guadalupe too. And Carlsbad, where I had to abandon plans to do three of their special cave tours because the approaching snowstorm threatened to close the park (and indeed it did).

At least travel plans gone awry due to weather and such make for memorable days. I was excited to take the cog railway or funicular or whatever up Pike's Peak, but when we arrived, it was closed because the mountain was on fire. I proposed we walk up but I think I quit after about 4 switchbacks. Then we went to the Garden of the Gods, but presently everyone was told to leave because of fire. Then we went to Manitou Springs and sampled all the different mineral waters until we were again evacuated. So we went off to see Royal Gorge but turned out to be too cheap to enter (that's on us), and Canon City was depressing at night because of the klieg lights from the endless prison.

Unless you're going to the Guads in autumn to see the maples turn, please go to West Texas in late summer, no earlier than mid-July and up through September, not in spring. That's when it rains and flowers (most years) and it's much the best time. And it will be warm when you go over to swim in Geronimo Falls, which though it's no more than an hour from the cave, and even wheelchair accessible, was by no means crowded when we were there. Big Bend has a swimmable falls that drains the Basin as well but I don't like to name it. The ranger will tell you if asked.

All in all, I think I'd rather face snow on a road trip than wildfire.

Late summer in west Texas was a surprising recommendation to me; much of California turns dry and brown in late summer. But I see that some flowers in Texas bloom then, and Guadalupe NP gets more rain in yup the late summer months. However the solar eclipse happens April 8, 2024. I'd been thinking: good, it won't be too hot then. Oh well.

For sure, go to the eclipse! A lot of people will descend - unless there's been a sea change in the culture (entirely possible) - but there's plenty of room for all. I think we may have discussed this before re Zion, Arches, etc. - I don't mind crowds - it's when there's no crowds I'll be worried. Since I don't fly, I'm pretty sure the Four Corners region is the closest I'll ever get to feeling I'm in Europe.

And anyway, people who go to Big Bend tend to return again and again. It has wonderful geology interpretation, and perfectly-laid-out roads, thanks to its truly great first superintendent, Ross Maxwell.

And while there, ponder an era of such different priorities that schoolchildren were asked to give their pennies to aid in securing a national park, and did.

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3. Speaking as a "philosopher," if someone's claim to demographic managerial status is predicated on alleged experience of injustice, but they are using that status to shut down any questioning of those claims about justice, then there is literally no reason being given why I ought to defer to the claim. Indeed, all the recent talk about "fragility" suggests that raising challenging questions is now considered a defect and further evidence that the person claiming managerial status is correct! This is bullying + fanatical obscurantism employed as tactics in a culture war, full stop.

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#4. I took my wife to see Crazy Rich Asians because she loves romantic comedies. I thought I was doing her a favor. She said it was really slow and boring and I said, gee, aren't all romantic comedies slow and boring and she said, "no I like romantic comedies like Jennifer Aniston movies, not like this." In hindsight this movie was a political experiment wrapped in a romantic comedy movie. It wasn't a romantic comedy movie for people who actually like to watch romantic comedy movies. And if it were just a regular romantic comedy movie, this site wouldn't mention it.

You seem to be forgetting the Crazy Rich Asians is a romantic comedy.

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#2. The Steve Sailer commentary on this, as one would expect, sublime. In a better world, he would be, I dunno, Secretary of Education, President, Ruler of the Universe...
https://www.unz.com/isteve/no-latinx-for-this-latina/

His riff on Latinx, Chicanx and Hispanx right below that is even funnier

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#1 Do the people who have already visited a place have some special right to that experience that potential future visitors do not have? Maybe the state of Wyoming should dissolve its tourism board and ban publication of any photographs of the state?

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