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I Think Therefore I Really Am…

Rene DescartesIt’s time to modify Descartes’s famous line I think therefore I am.  It should now read I think I am, therefore I am.  The original is no longer relevant, because if thinking was a condition of existence, there would not be many people left in our part of the world.

Typical women in prison

Proof can be found on the front page of the National Post of October 24th, 2017.  “Women’s prison left to cope after getting male inmate who identifies as female.”  A fully functional, unaltered male, in a living unit with eleven (other) women.  She thinks she is a woman, therefore she is a woman.

Another story on the same page of the newspaper discusses an acupuncturist who posed as a neurosurgeon.  The article is vague on whether he actually thought he was a neurosurgeon, or was just pretending, like a cross-dressing man pretending to be a woman.  One of the “doctor’s” victims reported him to the College of Physicians and Surgeons. “The (regulators) knew about it and did nothing,” he said.  Perhaps the College felt it would be offensive to challenge the acupuncturist/ neurosurgeon’s identity.

Comparing the two articles it seems that the newspaper accepts the prisoner’s identity as a woman, but refuses the “doctor’s.”  This is inconsistent, probably hypocritical.  Gender is much more innate, more immutable than profession.  If someone identifies as a surgeon, a lawyer, an accountant, why do they have less rights than someone who, through no fault of his/her own, was born with male DNA?

I Think Therefore I’m Not

It’s true that an untrained neurosurgeon can cause grievous harm.  The article about the acupuncturist who worked as a surgeon discusses a three-hundred thousand dollar payment awarded to a victim.  But is harm just a matter of scale?  Is there harm in letting transgender men, “transitioning” women, into a ladies’ locker room?  What about a white civil rights activist who thinks she’s black?  Fake Indians?  Or even smaller in scale, what happens when a former man takes part in a women’s athletic competition, overwhelming the competition with size, strength and speed?  Women (from birth), who could be athletic stars lose out to the (former) men.  Or what about women who just don’t like men gawking at them in the ladies’ room?

Former man, racing women

I Think Therefore I Clean

A man becoming a women isn’t limited to post-modern industrialized civilization.  Among hunter-gatherer cultures, at the behest of the spirits a man could undergo a shamanic transformation and become a woman.  Most often though, all this meant was wearing a woman’s hairstyle, sometimes even donning women’s clothes.  Rarely, there were men who were considered fully transformed.  These latter kept their male names and their male physique as they tended house, cleaning, carrying out all the domestic duties of a wife.  In the novel Quantum Cannibals (remember, this website is about the novel ), a bellicose man is a rapist and a loving mother.

Chukchi family, depicted by Louis Choris

I Think Therefore I’m Silent

One had to be a powerful shaman to fully (so to speak) change gender, so the ongoing ridicule was done in whispers.  The threat of harm was too strong.  If one wants to go against a transformed man in a contemporary post-modern high-tech Western society, it’s also best to speak in whispers, or not say anything at all.  If word gets out that you think a man becoming a woman (or woman becoming a man) is perverse, that such transformations are absurd, you will be scorned as trans-phobic, perhaps as a racist or Nazi (though none of those appellations make sense).  The spirits will apply their power through social media to attack you.

In California you can be prosecuted for using a male pronoun for someone who thinks they are female.  “I think I am, therefore…” you better accept it, no matter how ludicrous it may be.  The spirits, perhaps demons have subjugated reality.  An acupuncturist does surgery.  A computer scientist is an influential health and nutrition author, though her information is all wrong.  A billionaire drama teacher is Prime Minister of Canada.  A man walks into the women’s bathroom, and nobody says a word.

I Think Therefore I Speak

If we want reality to prevail over the spirits, maybe it’s time we start thinking.

 

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Paris: A Fool’s Paradise Is a Wise Man’s Hell

A Fool’s Paradise Is a Wise Man’s Hell

Thomas Fuller

The twentieth and twenty-first centuries have seen incredible progress in science, technology, art, philosophy, morality, and more. Not only that, but we can

Senegalese farmers learning how to install the Tipa irrigation kit

access all that knowledge and wisdom from a device we carry around in our pockets. We have even transcended modernity according to many progressive thinkers, and moved into the “post-modern” era. There is no need for a religious messiah; we have carried ourselves into paradise, albeit a fool’s paradise. Truly these are enlightened times; the realization of humanity’s universal values.

These enlightened values are a force in themselves. John Kerry, the American Secretary of State reacted to Russia’s invasion of the Crimea by telling Russia “You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on a completely trumped-up pretext.” The times, according to Kerry, dictate behavior. In a similar fashion, the new Prime Minister of Canada, when asked why a fifty percent female cabinet was important to him said, “Because it’s 2015.” President Obama, reacting to the Islamic terror attacks in Paris stated that “this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.”

It seems those values aren’t so universal.

Muslims make up over twenty percent of the earth’s population. While we can assume that most don’t support violence on the scale of the Paris attacks, if we look around at the world’s Muslim-controlled regions, we can see that they operate with different values than the ones adhered to by Secretary Kerry, Prime Minister Trudeau, or President Obama.

They made gallows just high enough for the feet to nearly touch the ground ... and they burned the Indians alive.'

‘They made gallows just high enough for the feet to nearly touch the ground … and they burned the Indians alive.’

But it would be wrong to assume that the problem is simply Islam. Christianity, followed by Islam, developed the concept of the religious enemy (in contradistinction to the political enemy). All non-believers are sub-humans, and bereft of rights. In early Spanish South America, for example there was a

…common practice of snatching [native] children from their mother’s arms and throwing them to be devoured alive by dogs, or smashing them against the rocks and throwing them to die in the mountains. The usual way to kill native leaders was in groups of thirteen, in honor of Jesus and the twelve apostles!”

The rape, torture and mutilation of native women by the Spaniards differed little from ISIS’ contemporary treatment of Yazidi and Christians. This contrasts with the Biblical rules of war for dealing with captive women, where such women were given a month to mourn for their captivity, and could not be sold or enslaved. And even the idea of

'A man bought me and took me to Tal Afar: when we arrived I was forced into marriage. That night he tied my hands and legs and he blindfolded me. Then he raped me. He hit me with a whip.'

‘A man bought me and took me to Tal Afar: when we arrived I was forced into marriage… he tied my hands and legs and he blindfolded me. Then he raped me. He hit me with a whip.’

capturing a woman was considered evil. It seems that a set of morals accepted over three thousand years ago is more enlightened than the values of a large part of humanity today.

Morality is not linear and progressive, especially if we are charting the behavior of mankind. It is a jagged line, soaring to phenomenal heights and astonishing depravity. We cannot expect the passage of time to elevate people’s behavior. There are no universal values that we all share, whether in the realm of political autonomy or the human right to life. It’s a fool’s paradise to think otherwise. Ask Vladimir Putin about the Crimea. Ask ISIS about the rights of captives. Ask a Muslim imam for an paris destructionunqualified condemnation of the Paris terror attacks. To use “universal values,” the “twenty first century” or the year being 2015 to formulate strategy is to walk from a fool’s paradise straight into the hell of Paris, Madrid, New York, Washington, or Buenos Aires… A wise man understands we are already there.

 

 

 

Your comments are welcome

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A Call To Arms

Shattered by Esti Mayer

Shattered
by Esti Mayer

Pick up your guns, strap on your helmet and report for duty. The bad guys are coming, and we have to mobilize. There have been skirmishes in many places, as varied as Ottawa, St. Jean, Chattanooga, Fort Hood, London, Paris, Västerås (Sweden) and others.  Lord only knows where’s next, and He isn’t saying.

Don’t have a gun? No problem. There’s the vast logistics and support network needed by an army at war. A call to arms doesn’t mean you have to personally fire a weapon.

surrender

surrender

You have no time for logistics? Can’t take off time from work? So what are you going to do to help for the Yazidi, Kurdish, or Assyrian

victims of ISIS?.   Are you concerned about the Syrians? Do you want them, or North African refugees in your country? Should you be concerned about the anti-science suppression of GMOs, which make proper nutrition available to the world’s poorest people? What about the campaign to delegitimize the only western democracy in the Middle East?

Call to arms- bomb us

A Call to Bomb

There are so many more issues: religious or environmental fanaticism, political correctness, sexual correctness, corporate greed, union greed. The list goes on and on. Can you really say you have no time to answer a call to arms? Many people consider themselves apolitical. Either they don’t care, or think one person can’t make a difference. They’re wrong. If you pay any taxes, politics affect your life. If you don’t grow your own food, politics affects you. Unless you’re a hermit, completely off the grid, politics affect you, whether it’s the stability of your job, the cost of your electricity, or the cost of your food. Even if you’re completely off the grid and nuclear war breaks out, politics affects you.

An Electoral Call to Arms

Voting makes a difference. Look at the economic decline of the U.S.A. under the current administration. Look at its loss of influence, its loss of respect. President Obama’s reset of relations, his red lines drawn in disappearing ink have given tyrants a free hand to flex their muscles, to threaten their weaker neighbors in the Ukraine, the Middle East, or the South China Sea. His quest for peace, for ending war, has made the world a much more dangerous place. On the home front, his election should have put paid to the issue of American racism. But race relations have deteriorated to levels unseen since the 1960’s as some unscrupulous people issue their own call to arms. What would have happened if Mitt Romney had won the election? John McCain? Any answer would be sheer speculation, but we can say for certain that different policies would have brought different results. The people who voted for Obama changed their country, changed their world.

In Canada, the choice of leader also makes a difference. Tom Mulcair, the Leader of the Official Opposition (and leading in some opinion polls) is very clear: he

a call to arms down

A Call to Down Arms

doesn’t want Canada fighting ISIS overseas. Does he want to wait till ISIS is conducting more than skirmishes on our shores? Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau mocked the Prime Minister’s combative policies, accusing him and his supporters of ““trying to whip out [their] CF-18s and show how big they are.”” He advocated Canada giving victims of ISIS rapes, torture and beheading advice on how to stay warm in winter.

So given ISIS’ track record, given its ambitions, given its skirmishes in North America, does it make a difference who is elected Prime Minister? Who is the President of the United States? To be apolitical in the face of such horror is to say you don’t care. That makes you an enabler.

For most Americans and Canadians, no matter how passionate they feel about a political issue, there is little they can do. We live in a representative democracy where we select the government that will make choices on our behalf- whether to go to war or appease, fight climate change or fight poverty, battle oppressors or constructively engage them, drop bombs against ISIS, or drop blankets on their victims.

There are Canadians and Americans picking up weapons (be they real or metaphorical) in the fight against ISIS, in the fight against fanatics that threaten our way of life, that threaten our safety and livelihood.  The call to arms they have answered is one that all of us must heed.

Voting Call to Arms

Weapon of Choice

It’s election time in Canada, and election time is approaching in the U.S.A. Therein lies the opportunity; therein lies a call to arms. It’s when we tell our leaders what direction to we want our country to turn towards. The choices are very stark.  Pick up your gun by working in support of the people who will best protect our interests, best protect our way of life. Campaign for the candidate who has learned the lessons of history: peace doesn’t come from appeasement. It comes from strength.

 

Your comments are welcome