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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Men vs. women

This morning a friend, Ed, posted this quote from Roger Simon after the Trump as Midas post:

"Approaching the vaunted one hundred day benchmark, it's clear the Republicans, not the Democrats or their faithful media allies, are the biggest threat to Donald Trump's presidency. Lost in various ego and ideology-driven agendas the GOP legislators are doing their best to elect Elizabeth Warren president in 2020. Perhaps they should turn over their donor lists to the Massachusetts senator and make things easier and more direct.

This may or may not speak poorly for Trump's managerial skills. And it doesn't account entirely for his poor poll numbers. But if there is a cancer on his presidency, it's coming largely from his own party's inability to enact legislation when they have undisputed control of Congress and the executive branch. It's almost as if the Republicans have a death wish and don't really want to govern - subconsciously preferring to be an opposition party that doesn't have to take responsibility for their actions, only for criticism".

Ed then sent this email:

That quote brings to mind another analysis of the problem with the Republicans in Congress, vs. Democrats:

The Democratic party behaves like a woman. It is comfortable taking from others (high taxation) with its members, by and large, being the recipients (generous government programs). It rarely sticks to the point in an argument, preferring to go hysterical with false accusations and distractions.

The Republican party behaves like a man. It talks a good game about what’s right, and what makes sense for personal liberty, economic growth and self preservation. But in the end, it gives in to the hysterical woman – ‘you win Honey’.

I replied that I liked that quote too, and asked, with my usual sense of diplomacy, where he'd gotten it from.

Ed replied that he'd come up with it himself.

With apologies to Ed -- and to any female readers -- I do think that's a clever analogy. Neither Ed nor I think that all women and all men are like that. But any middle-aged person for whom this doesn't ring true either hasn't been paying attention to politics, or has never been married.


High Arka said...

I enjoy that analogy, but any squabbling couple that could act so cohenently on certain issues, while acting completely incoherent on others, would have to be working together to present an image of obsession with trivialities that never grows significant enough to actually change their relationship over the course of decades. Their character traits and squabbles are shows that they put on for the benefit of onlookers at their cocktail party. But if you peek into the other rooms at an opportune time, you might notice the absolute trust they show each other while checking guests' pockets in the coat closet.

You've recently discussed "Christians" whose purported Christianity does not prevent them from doing un-Christian things when it is convenient for what truly motivates them. I believe your conclusion was that their motivation was money, status, or other things about which Jesus and/or His followers were not supposed to concern themselves excessively.

When, though, do womanly Democrats suddenly become hard-liners on bombing women and children? When do manly Republicans suddenly become proponents of spending taxpayer dollars to shelter lawbreaking foreigners? Myself, I don't really think that couple is at odds, no matter how much they let us see them fighting about whose turn it is to take out the garbage. But I agree, it really is a cute analogy.

What really matters.

John Craig said...

High Arka --
I guess that's the "You win honey" part.

Fled The Undertow said...

Can I just chime in here? Christians aren't perfect...if we were, we'd certainly have no need God. I think that most well-meaning Christians recognize bad behavior in themselves, apologize for it (repent), and try to do better going forward. Those are the ones who are genuine in their faith.

Then there are the "believers" who intentionally indulge in the same poor choices every day, figuring a quick "Sorry, God" at the end of the day will suffice. They end up sounding like a child when forced to apologize for hitting his little sister. They say they "repent", but no real change occurs. That sucks, because they're missing out on getting to know the real God, and when He responds...well, you'll never forget it.

Christians can get caught up in "sinful" habits (drinking, lying, porn addiction, overspending, adultery, etc) as much as anyone else. The problem is that we are held to a higher standard by nonbelievers who like to say, "See? They're no different than us! So this whole God thing is just a scam to make them feel superior." Not at all. We should feel superior to no one. We just have a higher power to call upon for help, He does indeed answer prayer, and once saved, we have assurance of the afterlife. Too many people feel they need to quit their bad behavior first, and THEN ask God for help, which is completely backwards. Just ask the folks in AA.

The Bible says that Satan doesn't have a legitimate claim on a Christian's soul after he dies. Satan knows this, but he's very content to steal our joy while we're on Earth, (stealthily, of course). Satan can make a Christian's life miserable AND smear God's reputation in the process.

Kaiser Soze said it best: "The greatest scam the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist."

Anonymous said...

I don't know about how Hong Kong politics translates into American, (Btw, sorry to pester you again about your japanese heritage, but do you know anything about their politics?)
Gk Chesterton (again do I quote that guy) description of British poltics in the early 20th century fits Hong Kong better than the American current situation, we don't have democrats or republicans.

“The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected. Even when the revolutionist might himself repent of his revolution, the traditionalist is already defending it as part of his tradition. Thus we have two great types -- the advanced person who rushes us into ruin, and the retrospective person who admires the ruins. He admires them especially by moonlight, not to say moonshine. Each new blunder of the progressive or prig becomes instantly a legend of immemorial antiquity for the snob. This is called the balance, or mutual check, in our Constitution.”

Translatability in politics also gets weird. The word "republic" in the USA means a representative democracy instead of a direct one, in Britain, it means rule of laws, you could have an oligarchy but if it's a republic, that means if one of them breaks a law he will be imprisoned. The UK is not a republic since the Queen is exempt from law (and she does have power, trust me, she is not only a figurehead.)

In 1975, in Australia, there was a constitutional crisis and the entire senate was in a mess, the Governer-General (the queens directly chosen representative and extension of her power) fired the Prime Minister on the spot and directly replaced him with the opposition party leader for a month until he called a new election. The queen approved the action.

"Liberal" doesn't imply leftism in every country. Sometimes liberalism is a economic ideology, probably closer to what is called neo-liberalism in the USA (hoping people's greed and rational self interest in money will prevent war and improve political co-operation)

US politics can be bad, but look at Taiwan:
It's a lot more direct, if there a bill someone doesn't want to be passed, they won't just stick to doing anything sly or underhand, look for loopholes, bribe someone with gifts. They will just get up, punch the speaker in the face, grab and burn the bill, this is a government official doing this. One woman even tore it up and ate it before anyone could vote, why filibuster if you and your entire gang could violently disrupt everything enough for security to be called in and have everything postponed after an investigation. If your bill doesn't pass or one gets passed because the opposition voted for it, you get up and get into a brawl.


John Craig said...

Ga --
I honestly don't follow Japanese politics. I have ea sense of the culture, and the psychology there, but can barely name the Prime Minister.

Ha, hadn't realized Taiwanese politics got like that, don't follow them either. I've seen films of fights in the South Korean legislature but wrote that off toothier Korean-ness. (Koreans, for some reason, seem to have higher levels of testosterone than other EastAsians.)

Yes, Left vs. Right is pretty universal. In the US, the Left has really gone off the deep end with their obsession with political correctness, but then again, as I said, I don't really follow politics in most countries.

Anonymous said...

Well... if you have a sense of the culture, forgive me if this is a politically incorrect question, why is Japan so weird? Why the weird sexual culture? The dadaism I see, those weird gameshows, nerdiness in millenials, bizarre business drinking culture, all that.

Yes yes, it's a minority of them, a fraction of a fraction, but a very large minority.
You could argue its due to being a repressed formal society, but Korea is also a very formal almost edwardian society too. The politeness level conjugations and honorifics are there in both countries, but that weirdness!

It's a stereotype among the Chinese and Koreans that the Japanese are sexual degenerates. There are ethnic slurs about that.


John Craig said...

Ga --
That's interesting, and funny. I had no idea the Chinese and Koreans had those slurs for the Japanese, signifying sexual degeneracy.

I have a feel for the culture, but I couldn't tell you WHY that's so. My feel comes from when I was living there, at ages 1 to 2 1/2, 8 to 9, and 13-14. I guess that first stint wouldn't have given me much of a "feel." Haven't been back since 1968. So my young boy's perspective wouldn't have lent much insight into the perversions.

Maybe some of the weirdness comes from just having been isolated so long,I don't know. But you've got me thinking: those pornographic cartoons, the sexual anime stuff, the geisha bars. I guess the Chinese and Koreans really don't have the equivalent.

Anonymous said...

The part you said about isolation may make sense. Chinese culture entered Japan a bit later than Korea, and permeated it less so. Confucianism and philosophy as a method of regulating formality entered Japan later, while it acted as a set of rules earlier in Korea.
Japanese names tend to be native, Korean names like English names are heavily foreignized, Korean are Chinese borrowed exclusively 80% of the time, Kim Jong Un is Gum Zing Yan in Chinese, like Arturo is Spanish for Arthur.

This weirdness goes back to the middle ages, I just watched a Korean film called "The Admiral" about the Japanese attempt to conquer Korea in order to invade and takeover China in the late 1500s/early 1600s, the Korean generals are all dressed in plain Chinese derived armor while the Japanese all have weird samurai armor, looking like a bunch of drag queens. Probably ethnic propaganda.

Japan was uplifted from primitive civilization by the Chinese, the Koreans already had one settled in before the Chinese reached them. Japan modernized quickly and haphazardly in the 19th century, Korea never got the chance back then.

There is a lot people in the west don't realize about how Eastern Asia has their own stories to tell, and some are very similar, not bizarre at all. A lot of people are shocked to realize China actually was in WW2 and fought the Japanese inside China, Shanghai was razed to the ground after months of fighting.

Take a look at the parallels between the Jews and certain Chinese sub-ethnicities (mainly Southern Chinese groups like the Hakka, Hokkien, Teochow).
David Tran the guy behind Sriracha sauce was an ethnic Chinese, after the USA left vietnam and the north took over, they cracked down and launched pogroms on ethnic chinese living in Vietnam because of suspected ties to Chinese Communism (the Vietnamese followed the rival USSR communism), so he fled.

In Thailand the current prime minister and many before, many wealthy business owners, bankers, more are of Chinese descent. In the Philipinnes, prominent clans controlling business are of Chinese descent, many of whom changed their last names to sound Filipino/Hispanic like the Cojuanco family (from Kho, a Hokkien Chinese last name, Huan meaning domain, and Go, or brother, so Brother of the Kho's domain, Kho Huan Go.)

Indonesia, it's really been a long topic with them about the Chinese ethnic minorities, they've had possibly the most pogroms, if something goes bad, the Indonesian go and burn down a Chinatown. The Chinese there have lost a good deal of their power, many now pay protection money to Indonesian mafia types.

And all of these countries have conspiracy theories and slurs against the Chinese resembling ones against the Jews.

I take it while you didn't know the Chinese and Koreans had slurs against the Japanese, you didn't feel surprised. Some people would be surprised that they even have slurs or slang or stereotypes against each other like we do in the west.

Sometime I wish people would acknowledge or just know passively that shit is happening all over the world from Africa, to Europe, to Asia, to the Americas. It's not Americans who are the worst offenders, they may make the most factual mistakes like thinking Japan and Korea are the same country.

But the worst offenders have been internet Europeans, not Russians or Brits, but mostly interior Europeans like the French or Dutch, they act like they live in the capital of the world. It hardly occurs to them non-western nations have their own internet stupidty, political unrest, and timeghost (don't force me to say that word "zeitgeist", aww crap just did), even if they are more factually informed than a typical American, they have more chauvinism instead of a curiosity. But they are a minority, but just big and noticeable enough.


John Craig said...

Ga --
Yes, I'm familiar with the many parallels between the Chinese and the Jews. The Chinese have also taken over the local economies in place like Fiji and Malaysia and in parts of the Philippines, and had in Viet Nam before a lot of them were kicked out. And a lot of people don't realize the way the Chinese are trying to corner the resource market in various Third World countries, especially in Africa.

No, I"m not surprised that the Chinese or Koreans have slurs for the Japanese. It would be amazing if they didn't, considering that Japan occupied both places. (My Japanese grandfather, by the way, was in Nanking during "the rape of Nanking" during WWII.)

Anonymous said...

I have someone on my paternal grandmothers side who was involved in the trail of tears.

I want to also share something on race, have you heard of the Piraha people?
Daniel Everett discovered the Piraha people and learned their language, after he wrote a grammar, people accused him of falsifying or deliberately misinterpreting it because it didn't fit in with the current norm.

The current norm promoted by the likes such as Noam Chomsky is universal grammar, or all human languages stems from a innate organ ability, that every language has shared basic universal features that make it human. Also included is that all languages stem from one first human universal language.

The opposite view is language is a creation from human experiences and abilities we have available to us like tools, such as making a sound, assigning a meaning, and organizing words with our brains, and similarities languages share have evolved convergently. It also hypothesizes in the beginning the first few languages could have evolved independently in early man, maybe with some flow and drift passing some qualities from one side of the world to the other.

Piraha lacks the one feature Chomsky claims every language must have, recursion. Or putting something else in one sentence about something. You cannot say "He said that he went there" in piraha its "He said something. He went there" or "I saw the man who has a boat" It's "I saw the man. He has a boat". "The tall handsome tired man" is "The man has big, he has exhaustion, he has goodlooks". Nothing can be put inside another, before, or describe something else in a sentence.

Other things include no numbers whatsoever (many amazonian languages have a word for "one" and another for "more than one", but none in Piraha), no words for colors (some languages have no words for red, blue, orange, etc. but for stuff like dark cool hues, bright warm colors, etc.) but Piraha has none.

There are few sounds, their alphabet only needs 9 letters.
There is only one word for a parent, no matter generation or gender, one word for all cousins and siblings. One word for all children or grandchildren.

They refuse to speak any other language even though they understand many perfectly well. And will reply back in their own or use body language. They have weird cultural beliefs completely unusual, even for Amazonian tribes. They laugh at suicides and have very few if none (suicide is not unheard of in other Amazonian tribes and is treated seriously), they also refuse to learn to count, they have no belief in an afterlife or Gods or named spirits but are superstitious and believe in ghosts. Even other rainforest tribes think they are weird.

Piraha has way to say there is more than one thing, they aren't aware of the concept when asked, there is only I, you, it, and there is evidence it was borrowed from another language. There is no word for much, many, less, few, etc. You can say "Object has big quantity" but not "There are many". There is no word for "is" either.
The language can be whistled or hummed, there is a method of translating sounds into certain whistles or pitches.

Another interesting thing about another unrelated tribe, Yanomami, they have some of the healthiest microbiomes in their digestive system, and almost if no recorded cases of autism. Before you feel skeptical, keep in mind:

It's easy to analyze a small tribe of a few hundred unlike an entire population of millions, and they didn't find any after careful looking in each small tighly knit village. The Amish have very low rates, a detailed survey and careful analysis of individuals in each small village found only one case of any sort of autism for every 300 people compared to the 1 in 100-50 in the rest of the world.

Why do people keep saying there are no differences between groups of humans? (Rhetorical)


John Craig said...

Ga --
I hadn't heard of the Piraha, but I have heard of other primitive peoples with primitive languages which have, for instance, no allowance for different tenses, or lack the concepts "could" or "would" or "should," only "do."

I looked up the Piraha on Wiki just now and saw that they are amazingly knowledgeable about and resourceful with their environment.

Anonymous said...

The strangest thing is that when there is complexity, it seems put in areas that are important to the culture.

Piraha has no tense, but at least 2 dozen different ways of explaining whether you saw, heard, felt, suspected, etc. something in a verb. No tense, but aspect (whether it has been finished, is it still happening as we speak?)

A tribe in the pacific may lack could would or should, just "do", but they can have 2 dozen words for "eat" such as one for animals, one for insects, one for eating with a chief, one for eating alone, one for eating meat, one for eating raw fruit, etc.

The complexities are more concerned with what is the here and now to many of these primitive tribes, rather than what is not concrete.

But sometimes "primitive" grammar (I am not referring to vocabulary as well like in Piraha) doesn't equal low IQ, Chinese has some of the most absurdly simple grammar on earth but their vocabulary is sufficient for a modern language and the Chinese have IQs averaging 100-105.

If I learned and spoke Piraha fluently, I don't think I would suddenly loose 40 IQ points, the way people think affects their language, not the other way round. The theory touted by xenophiles that what you speak affects how you think or your intelligence (outside of immediate distinctions like if a language has 5 words for "this" you may point them out quicker, but you won't gain 20 IQ points for that one thing) is crap.

The Piraha are weird, yes, even in comparison to other primitive tribes. Nobody knows where they came from. Other tribes have much more complexity in their organization and way of thinking and life. The Piraha just live like nothing matters, everything is concrete to them. They are not a typical representation of an Amazonian tribe or even a primitive tribe for that matter. People who have known about Amazonian tribes were shocked when learning about the Piraha. They have about as much unusuality to other tribes as they do to us, we have more in common in some ways with other primitives than anyone possibly does with the Piraha. They are that weird, their language is uniquely exceptional, not relative to anything else, their behaviors and language are objectively (if I can even use that word) exceptional for a human group.


Anonymous said...

I stupidly de-anonymized myself there in my previous comment,hit the wrong button, FUCKING GOOGLE+, I hate them.
Can you fix that for me, take my name off OR DELETE THE COMMENT.
Couldn't hurt.
Thanks in advance.

John Craig said...

Done. To tell the truth, I hadn't even noticed until you just pointed it out. At first I thought you were saying that because you worked at that restaurant or something, then I looked above and noticed.