Let’s have a chat

Do you like to talk about mansplaining?
Do you like to talk about toxic masculinity?
Do you like to talk about male privilege?

Outstanding! It’s time to talk.

We can agree that bullying is bad, right? Now by bullying, I mean both verbal and physical assault. But let’s be specific: grabbing somebody without provocation, but with ill-intent is bullying; striking somebody without provocation is bullying. Threatening somebody with bodily harm is bullying. Intentionally interrupting somebody in an aggressive manner? That’s bullying. Now that we’ve got our definitions laid out and agreed upon, let’s continue.

Why does Jim Acosta still have a job at CNN? Why does this petulant putz Acosta continue to spew his rhetoric and act in such a disgusting manner, and stay employed by CNN?  Watching the footage of his most recent press briefing at the White House, I cannot help but wonder how he thinks his behavior is acceptable.

All across Facebook, I see women declaring their staunch support of feminism and women’s rights. I’ve seen thousands of memes about “lift each other up” and “queens help each other” or “she persisted.” But here and now, when faced with the opportunity to confront a toxic male who clearly has no respect for women, I see silence or worse from the self-proclaimed feminists. Worse you ask? Indeed, I see justification from the feminists for this behavior. I see far too many women cheering on the threats.

It does not matter for whom Sarah Huckabee Saunders is the Press Secretary. Whether Hillary Clinton stood in the Oval office, Elizabeth Warren, Robert Byrd, Kamala Harris or Mia Love, Press Secretary Saunders deserves the same professionalism, the very same dignified treatment, without regard for whom the Chief Executive of these United States is. Dislike her boss all you want. Love him, hate him, it does not matter. We select our chief executive by way of the ballot box. That does not justify the threats of violence and depredation which have occurred.

A friend once taught me that reciprocity matters. If we use political clout to further our own goals at the expense of others, why should we be surprised when those with whom we disagree act in like manner? Harry Reid famously changed the way confirmations are performed for Justices. It was decried by many as a bad a move, but Reid would not hear of it, and I know many Democrats who applauded. They didn’t need to listen to other points of view or other give value to others’ opinions; they didn’t need to bother working with others. What quaint plebeian notions!

Right up until a party and group of people whom they did not agree with came into power unexpectedly. Now we hear demands for tolerance, compassion, cross-aisle compromise. Where was this a few short years ago? It was not present in the venom, the sheer malevolence of the public statements made.

This state of affairs cannot long continue without doing grievous harm to our Republic. It must end. How then shall we begin? With the equal application of justice.

I’ll believe that CNN supports Feminism when they fire Acosta rather than tolerate his unacceptable behavior one minute further.
I’ll believe the feminists truly care about all women when they set aside political bias to stand up for a woman who doesn’t share their beliefs.
I’ll believe that the MeToo movement supports an end to bad behavior by men when they confront the vipers within their midst and remove such personages permanently. I recommend the sentence of hanging after a guilty verdict is pronounced by a jury. Harvey can’t rape another woman if he’s dead.

When I see Acosta being escorted from CNN’s headquarters on live tv, cardboard box in hand, I’ll care.
When I see him, months afterward, still unable to gain employment because no broadcaster will put up with him, I’ll care.
When he, and every other Matt Lauer-type are no longer on the air, nor their actions swept under the rug, I’ll care.

This goes beyond the realm of media though, and deep into the world of literature. Steadily, there has been a decline of civil discourse. We have set aside such practices in the day and age of social media for the sake of being the first to pronounce a statement, regardless of whether or not we’ve sourced it, verified it, and given it the proper due. Instead there seems to be a stampede to jump on whatever bandwagon has driven into public view and claim it as our own. I’ve seen Black Friday shopping crowds with more manners than the common variety of internet discussions which occur now.

It feels like a Mexican-standoff. Nobody trust each other enough to back down. Nobody trusts each other enough to step back and try to resolve this- not in favor of one side or the other, no finding common ground and peacefully seeking solutions which benefit everybody. Nope. None of that. Instead it’s daggers held at each other’s throats.

What will it take to get people to trust each other? For better or worse, we’re gonna have to start sitting down and talking. We need to find what one of my communications instructors termed “points of commonality”- things we agree on. When we find something that we don’t agree on, we talk it out, with rationality and civility. No screaming, no screeching, no hysterics. And where we can’t agree, even after polite debate, let us agree to disagree and carry on with our day.

You’re going to hear awful things throughout your life. Some of the worst conversation I’ve endured in the course of my life came from listening to white supremacists pontificate at length about how segregation and purity of race are the most important actions of human existence. Mind you, I’m the direct product of a (very happy) union between a Hawaiian man and a white woman. I’m a hapa haole. Something which I had never cause to consider till a black woman (every bit as bigoted as the Klukker) lectured me on the need of whites to make reparations to ‘people of color’. In both cases, I listened to the whole of their rant, calmly asked a few questions of my own, then walked away. I don’t need to fight with them. They weren’t blocking my exit, and they certainly hadn’t raised a hand against me. A man can walk away without needing to apply violence.

About the time the second of these two yahoos got through ranting on how white people needed to open their homes to POC and take care of all their needs, I started having a conversation in my head.
Me: “Self, does that mean Mom owes Dad money?”
Also Me: “Can’t, dad’s the family breadwinner. They’ve shared all their money in a single account since they got hitched.”
Me: “She can pay him back with food.”
Also Me: “Daddy does love Momma’s cooking.”
Me: “Wonder what she’ll make? Ramen noodles with eggs and shredded chicken?”
Also Me: “He had that that for lunch when he got home from graveyard shift. She’ll make homemade cream of mushroom over rice.”
Me: “Betcha if I make peach cobbler for dessert he’ll let me take the truck out for the evening.”
Also Me: “Double time! MARCH!”

Do we see, at it’s very most base, how silly and stupid this segregation/supremacists nonsense is? Which part of my family starts paying back whom? I’ve got more important things to do with my time. You have more important things to do with your time. We all do- there is a need to be civil. To be patient. To learn from each other. And then act in a mature and sensible manner.

I don’t have to like that xenophobic jackass Theodore Beale, any more than I have to accept the nonsense Elizabeth Warren spews. But that doesn’t mean I should threaten them. That doesn’t mean if I were to end up in a debate that I should scream incessantly and incoherently at them, nor interrupt them.

We’ve got to learn how to talk with each other again. Or we’re in a whole lot of trouble.


  1. I want to know how you handle reparations to yourself. Does transferring money from checking to savings count?

  2. Do those of us whose ancestors hadn’t arrived by 1865 owe anything? Or get anything? How about those that haven’t arrived yet?

    I see someone’s in a snit over Zac Efron’s hair, again.

    I’m almost to the point where if someone brings up cultural appropriation in a non-mocking way I’m gonna put more energy into mocking them than I do working for public safety. These people don’t know sh*t from Shinola but they are Ooooohhh so self righteous in their condemnation of everyone else.

    1. A foster carried by a non-leftist in the western world owes everything to whoever the SJWs thinks should get the benefit. Sins of the fathers is a strong concept with atheists.

    2. No non-Hispanic white arrived after 1865. And if they did, they deserved to be treated as if they did, because disobeying stereotype is evil.

  3. At this point? I can only hope for continued economic recovery and increased employment leading to less stress over money at the individual level. I think stress is fueling the insanity.

    Student loan debt loads are appalling, especially the ones for worthless majors. I think that is adding to a lot of the screaming rage, as people realize they signed themselves up for decades of not getting anywhere.

    1. I want student loans to become dischargeable in bankruptcy again. That would cause a whole lot of short-term pain and long-term reform.

      1. Did you know there’s something like a trillion dollars in outstanding US student loan debt out there?

        Did you know the US Dept. of Education has a SWAT team? They do! They used it to apprehend a guy with defaulted student loans. And the best part is, they raided the WRONG HOUSE.

        Can you imagine what a trillion dollars worth of loans getting defaulted at once would do to the US University system? Kablooey!

        So yeah, on reflection I kinda like your idea. >:D

        1. the loans getting defaulted won’t affect the university system, just the banking system and the federal govt.

  4. My opinion, for whatever it’s worth, is that a lot of our difficulties talking politics come from the fact that government has gotten too big. There was a twitter exchange a while back where someone said something to the effect of, “Oh, it’s easy for you to say that Paul Ryan is a decent man. You aren’t in danger of losing your health insurance if his policies are enacted.” And yeah, okay, I see why this makes you nervous, but the problem is that you outsourced your health insurance to someone else in the first place. And once that happened, suddenly every shift in the political winds is a matter of life and death to you.

    If we had a government that limited itself to the enumerated powers, I think we could figure out how to talk politics without demonizing each other. If our political disagreements were primarily about where to put the post office, then yeah, things might get heated at times, but I think we could talk and move on. But with large swaths of the country thinking that they’re one bad election away from losing food or medicine or their right to speak or carry weapons, it’s much harder not to think of anyone who votes for the wrong guy as “the enemy.”

    Libertarians for civility! It may be our only hope.

    1. “My opinion, for whatever it’s worth, is that a lot of our difficulties talking politics come from the fact that government has gotten too big.”

      Absolutely. See ‘The Bitter Wastes of Politicized America’


      1. There’s big money in federal government, BIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIG money, and politicians and political parties that want to get hold of that big money. Don’t want them other guys to get hold of it.

  5. None of those are bullying. Bullying is applying unanswerable pressure (physical or psychological) designed to make someone abandon their position (physical, emotional, intellectual, or moral). Absent that motive, the same attack is assault, or merely rudeness.

    This is why sane laws punish assault, not “bullying” (or its bastard cousin, “hate speech”).

    1. No.

      People are much more likely to bully out of the pure love of bullying. And nothing the victim can do can appease them.

  6. What did that guy do?

    I looked on twitter, I think today, and saw that someone had favorited a tweet by him. It struck me as a hissy fit over alleged refusal to recant the ‘press is the enemy’ talk. I mentally composed a rant along the lines of ‘denial of the fact of the enmity between the press and freedom is Confederate revanchist revisionist history, and is inherently toxic and racist’. Then forgot about it and went on with my day.

    Slightly more seriously, given the current wave of anti-foreign sentiment, why are we extending freedom of the press to what are clearly mouthpieces for foreign government propaganda? Obviously, we should be hanging people from media organizations that aren’t 100% privately owned by American Citizens with no ties to any foreign government. It is almost like any legal structure that would easily permit such would pose too much of a danger to freedom to tolerate.

    Five months until the midterms. It’ll be interesting to see how ugly things get. I don’t know about anyone else, but /I/ tend to calm down and pay attention to the more important things in life.

      1. I’m seeing the results of my childhood dog’s tryst with the Pekinese down the street. Wouldn’t have been so bad, except that HE was an Italian greyhound.

    1. I don’t /tend to/, I /need to/. I perhaps ought to take a break until I get my head straighter.

  7. Jonathon asks: “Do we see, at it’s very most base, how silly and stupid this segregation/supremacists nonsense is?”

    This is in the air today. I offer a sally from the Ivory Tower side of the aisle:


    This is from Deborah MacLatchy, the president and vice-chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo Ontario. Famous, or infamous depending on how you look at it, for the Lindsay Shepherd Affair. Which did not include free speech, let’s just say.

    Since the initial wave of stupidity, Lindsay Shepherd has filed a lawsuit against WLU, from which I expect she will do rather well.

    The important thing to note here is President MacLatchy, having declined to protect Lindsay Shepherd’s rights and freedoms from the bureaucracy of her own university, is now doubling down. “Better speech”, you see, is what you get when academics decide how everything is going to go.

    So really, they’re not going to come around to fairness and let us talk.

    The answer to the question “Do we see, at it’s very most base, how silly and stupid this segregation/supremacists nonsense is?” is that this is the wrong question. Yes, they do know, and they are doing it anyway. Out of spite, for the most part.

    The true question is, what’s the appropriate response to people trying to hurt you out of pure malice and spite, because of who you are?

    My response is BRING IT and then a bunch of swearing, but I’m a terrible human being. Anybody else have any answers?

      1. Baa with the herd, or be singled out for a good trampling.

        One gets the impression of a bunch of pencil-necked cowards and bitchy pink-haired sea mammals, trying to nerve each other up for a fight.

        Conservatives be standing there, waiting with arms crossed, wishing they’d hurry up and get to the hitting part.

        This video of the Tucker Carlson show is illuminating in that regard:

  8. a right-leaning fannish Youtuber was attacked physically by a lefty at a bar while both where in Indiana for Gencon.

    1. Yeah, I just saw that. Unprovoked blows to the head? Breaking a bar’s window? How hopped up was this guy? And allegedly he runs a game store?

      Argh. Talk about a wannabe murder hobo.

  9. When people no longer care about points of commonality, when they no longer care to honestly listen and think about the arguments of the other side(s), when they no longer care to honestly debate, but instead prefer to monologue; then you are beyond the point of peaceful resolution. At that point, one side must cause sufficient pain and agony to the other to bring them to the bargaining table. And even that can’t happen without an overwhelming show of superior force. The only other way out is by exhausting both sides so they both give up; and I don’t see that happening, even in America 2018.

  10. CNN is not a stand-alone entity, it is a part of Time Warner. CNN’s bias and behavior is some extreme that we can only assume that the senior management of Time Warner either (a) agrees with it, or (b) thinks it is worthwhile from a business standpoint in order to capture a particular audience segment. (the latter being highly questionable in terms of their ratings)

    If the merger that is currently on the table goes through (which it will unless DOJ wins their appeal), then CNN will be part of AT&T. Will AT&T management also support CNN’s behavior?

  11. The Left’s #1 Rule: It’s not wrong when we do it. That’s all you need to know.

  12. A very interesting post. I agree with the whole of its substance and would have been pleased to read it on your blog.

    But it doesn’t really touch on writing, editing, or promoting, or the genres in general.

    That bit where you said “This goes beyond the realm of media though, and deep into the world of literature” is a good place to go into more detail about how this disconnect and hostility is further screwing up the writing world.

    So: Worldcon, sucked into the black hole of their own asterisk anuses?

    Alt Hero, does it have a chance?

    Is it presumptious to keep mum on social media and start deleting anything potentially objectionable now, in the event you make it big (or your stalk grows marginally higher than the rest) and the outrage mob targets you for one reason or another?

    Is all publicity good publicity? A couple on the alt-rightish side seem to have taken that road.

    Having destroyed the Star Wars brand, will the woke wrecking crew turn their sights to Marvel next? How long will it take them to destroy the Marvel movie brand the way they have the comics? Are all IPs doomed to be bled white then have their hollowed skins worn by idealouges?

    1. “Is it presumptious to keep mum on social media and start deleting anything potentially objectionable now, in the event you make it big (or your stalk grows marginally higher than the rest) and the outrage mob targets you for one reason or another?”

      James Gunn and Sarah Jeong are the poster children for this right now. They used to be nobody, and got by mostly from being suuuper edgy Left on Twitter. Then they became Somebody, and because of the New Rules where Lefties don’t get a free pass, now they’re facing some payback for all that stuff they said ten years ago.

      I think that anyone who blogs under their real name these days is taking a much bigger risk that they think. People are starting to use their cars on people with Trump bumper stickers in some parts of the USA. We could easily end up in a situation where your expressed political affiliation decides where in the USA you get to live.

        1. The payback is in progress. While the NY Times hasn’t cut her loose yet, all the other dumb girls with big mouths out there are looking at their Twitter feeds and deleting stuff from years past. Or if they’re not, prospective employers are.

          Meanwhile, the Daily Caller probably has a whole archive of dumb stuff that Little Sarah said over the years, and they’ll keep releasing it until she’s so radioactive even the Times won’t keep her. I bet James Gunn is super mad that he’s fired and she’s not.

          After all, it isn’t like she’s the brightest spark of her generation. She’s just another semi-literate average student virtue-signaling her way into a career. Makes you wonder if she had to sleep with somebody to get the NY Times gig.

          1. You think that other people are destroying evidence is payback on her?

            Curbing the Left’s racist outburst is good but not payback.

            Also, she’s get touted and praised by many people. I have seen with my eyes people saying that she demonstrates that Asians have a right to rage. Not rage at this person or that person — not rage over this injustice or that one — just plain rage.

            1. “You think that other people are destroying evidence is payback on her?”

              Yes, because that is formerly stupid people learning that their unacceptable utterances of bigotry and racism are -punishable-. There are a lot of young women out there, recently graduated, who are re-thinking their knee-jerk virtue signalling on social media, precisely because prospective employers are routinely going over those sites. Nobody wants to hire a Sarah Jeong by accident. So far, her punishment is that she’s the classic example of what not to do. Presently I’m sure that the NY Times will discover that -their- unexamined prejudices have led them astray as well, not all Asians are super smart, and an Ivy League degree does not necessarily mean a competent employee.

              “Also, she’s get touted and praised by many people.”

              I’ve seen them too. This is a feature, not a bug. ~:D It is always convenient when idiots self-identify. Ten years from now, being the dolt that touted Sarah Jeong may well be an instant deal breaker.

              1. “Punishable” does not mean “punished.” One can fear punishment even if someone else weasels out, because you think standards might be tougher when they find you, or because you are not so much a victim-group member.

                And, anyway, payback by definition is about HER.

                1. You know, I don’t disagree with you. It’d be great to see her take a nice body-check over the boards for being a bitch and high-sticking everybody. Righteous payback.

                  But that’s how we got here, to the ludicrous position we are in, where a guy gets booted out of WorldCon for voting Republican. (And y’all Vile-ers can whinge all you want, that’s what happened there.) Plus flat-out rioting in American cities over a -prayer meeting-.

                  We don’t get -out- of this place by taking scalps, tempting though it is. We get out by educating the stupid about what is waiting for them if they keep being stupid, and defeating the forces of evil. If moron Sarah Jeong manages to survive becoming the poster girl for “Don’t be a racist douche online, kids!” I can live with that.

                  All we need to do is keep swelling the ranks of #walkaway and we’re good. Sarah Jeong is getting that done for us, very effectively.


                  They’re self-refuting. We need to let them rage on, louder and harder, while we laugh, point and enjoy yummy popcorn. >:D

                  1. I talk a lot about the possibility we must kill communists, or even socialists.

                    What’s the down side of that? Look how many strong right wingers are former socialists.

                    I forget the exact name, or the period of rule, but there was an anti-communist dictator who had spent time in the Soviet gulag for being a Trotskyite.

                    /I/ still believed some of the leftwing crud when I was in my early teens.

                    Suppose this were instead a hot civil war. You don’t get good outcomes from just killing everyone who isn’t part of your favorite narrow political faction. There’s a fraction of the population that isn’t trustworthy enough to easily ally with politically, and isn’t so dangerous an enemy that you absolutely have to kill them.

                    I’d want to see evidence of repentance and changed ways before really trusting some of these people. At the same time, I’ve spent a lot of time recently on figuring out how to find enough common ground to make a ceasefire viable. (An abstract intellectual exercise, once I realized that this was the cultural factor that let the varied colonies form a nation.)

                    1. Hell, Bob, I don’t trust anybody at the best of times. But that doesn’t matter. You don’t have to trust them.

                      Most, like over three quarters of civil wars don’t turn out like the USA. They turn out like Syria. Settle scores, kill everybody you don’t like, burn their stuff and salt their land.

                      That reality is why collecting scalps is a bad idea. It is not our fricking job to punish the guilty. We are not smart enough to get that right.

                      Our job is to protect the innocent, defend ourselves, and forgive people when they screw up. The one, single hardest thing in the world to do. That’s -our- job.

                      We are janitors. We clean up.

                    2. The American Civil War was the most significant war in American history in terms of deaths.

                      Okay, it ended a lot more nicely than a lot of civil wars do. Civil wars by and large suck.

                      Part of what brought peace is that the Republicans, who had the whip hand, did not go all in on punishing the wicked (for values of all in that include extermination), because enough people were complicit that you could not adequately start punishing the guilty without restarting the civil war. Segregation is likewise a case where most of the guilty escaped punishment because they had too large of a political faction behind them, and that faction was too complicit to afford to be able to permit surrender. There’s a position I term Moderate Republican, strictly compared to the 1860s Radical Republicans, that accepts such compromises. (And as opposed to the modern unnecessarily surrendering Republicans, who go back at least to the nomination of Wendell Willkie. )

                      Jeong is most dangerous as part of a disinformation organization with credibility. With what is now known about her, she impeaches the credibility of any media organization she is with. She doesn’t seem to pass any critical threshold of dangerous, and isn’t rare enough to be otherwise worth making a significant example of.

  13. I’m going to quote/paraphrase something I heard from someone else: “Here’s the thing: I don’t WANT to talk to these people, because they’re not arguing in good faith. Take for example the wretched new She-ra: I get a leftist saying she should look like that because as a fighter it’s realistic, and I’m all like: you’re deliberately missing the distinction between being realistic and taking the material seriously. Of course it was never realistic, but the original took the characters and the situations seriously! And that’s every argument I’ve had: seize on an unimportant point, move the goal posts, change the definition of words, when they bother arguing at all and don’t just dox or attack you. So no: I. Don’t. Want. To. Talk. To. Them.”

    I’m seeing those attitudes growing.

  14. There’s that fetid, diseased cunt that was hired by the New York Times to their editorial board, who has been open about her racism against white people, and her misandry that’s a good example of the huuuuuuuuge double standards the Left holds – she’s given a pass because she’s Asian and female, and on ‘their’ side. Given her calls for men’s personhood to be revoked, I can only hope that she will not pass on her genes.

    They’re openly declaring that there is no dialogue they’re interested in from anyone who isn’t on the Left. The reaction to someone saying Ben Shapiro was nice was horrific, causing the person to apologise.

    There is no dialogue save capitulation that they will accept.

    1. There is no dialogue save capitulation that they will accept.

      If this is true, it soon becomes obvious to any thinking person.

      Aggressive speech policing has an easier time silencing dissenting opinion than it does truly changing minds.

      If our hypothesis is true, we would expect a certain number of people who silently think, to some degree, that this is oppressive bullshit. Those people might be inclined to listen to someone with the courage or recklessness to say that it is oppressive bullshit, and to forgive that someone a certain amount of other sins.

      1. Sums it all up really.

    2. “B-but you don’t underSTAAAAAAND. We talk with her about it and she promised with a cherry on top that she was only PRETENDING to be racist, because of a lot of OTHER people who she hasn’t actually proved existed were meanies to her first! So she doesn’t count! And anyway, privilege!” — The best defense they could muster.

        1. Yes, word is getting out that -anything- they choose to do is acceptable, while everything their opponents do isn’t.

          Today it was acceptable for the Portland Police to let masked thugs beat up people in the streets, people the Portland Police had already disarmed. Its funny how the Proud Boys never have bats and clubs, but Antifa always does. That’s how Lefties do it. Nice thing is, we can all SEE them doing it now.

          When everybody finally knows that the Lefties are in it for the Lefties, that’ll be pretty much it for them. No more cush gubmint jobs, etc.

          1. Phantom, it may instead be an artifact of Democrat organizational culture instead of leftism.

            That was basically how the Democrats ran a bunch of their lynchings.

    3. People have dug that
      1. she’s explicitly wished for white genocide, and
      2. she was abusive of the journalists who proved the the UWA rape hoax was, indeed, a hoax, for proving it.

        1. BUT — on other hand, when parents were tracking their underage daughter, she gets all snarky about “white girl’s viriginity” because molesting underage girls is just fine if they are white.

        2. Here’s the largest excavation I’ve seen:

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