Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Feminists think stereotypes are only bad when other people use them

The Left is awash in bigotry.  They are bigoted in favour of women, blacks, Hipanics any type of sexual deviant and any group that has problems.  And they are bigoted against middle class white males. And they call conservatives racist!

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has banned two adverts for ‘promoting gender stereotypes’. Ironically, while the ASA was railing against gender stereotypes, Green Party MP Caroline Lucas was reviving them when calling for an emergency female-only cabinet ‘to work for reconciliation’ – because only women, so the stereotype goes, are ‘able to reach out to those they disagree with and cooperate to find solutions’.

These two examples highlight feminists’ hypocrisy around the use of gender stereotypes. They usually criticise them when the stereotypes are associated with male success, but celebrate them when they’re deployed in pursuit of female opportunity, such as accessing the levers of state power. That is, feminists are happy to use gender stereotypes to further the interests of a few top women.

The ASA’s feminism is not a surprise. Since 2017, it has been campaigning to challenge any claim by advertisers that associates men with success in the workplace or which associates women with playing a domestic or care-giving role. Two years ago it published a report into ‘gender stereotypes in advertising’. Ella Smillie, who led the research, with ‘passion and energy’, is now head of policy and campaigns at the Fawcett Society, ‘where she is determined to fight sexism and gender inequality in all its forms’.

Passion and energy and a determination to fight sexism and gender inequality are the attributes of a campaigner, not a sober researcher. But then, the ASA’s report was always intended to be the product of a campaign rather than a dispassionate inquiry. The terms of reference assumed that gender roles were a problem, hence the report begins by explaining that the project considered whether ‘the ASA is doing enough to address the potential for harm arising from the inclusion of gender stereotypes in ads’. So, from the outset, the ASA’s only concern was how much to meddle in what it took to be a problem. The project listened to ‘experts’ and ‘stakeholders’, from the likes of the Women’s Equality Party and Stonewall, who told the ASA what it wanted to hear.

As a result of the report, the rules on advertising were changed in late 2018 to outlaw advertisements that included ‘gender stereotypes that are likely to cause harm’. And, last week, as a result of this rule, the ASA was able to ban two ads (both of which can be viewed here).

Exhibit one: an advert for a Volkswagen eGolf, a car with an electric motor. Volkswagen sought to draw attention to the car’s innovative nature with the strap line, ‘When we learn to adapt, we can achieve anything’. It illustrated this with a male rock-climber sleeping on a sheer cliff face, male astronauts performing mundane tasks in an extreme environment, a male para-athlete with a prosthetic leg doing the long jump, and a woman adjusting to life with a newborn. The point being that when the eGolf appears at the end of the advert it becomes clear that its designers had risen to the challenge of manufacturing a car with a quiet engine. In fact, it’s so quiet that it doesn’t wake the baby or register with its mother sitting on a park bench as it passes them.

The ASA ruled that the ad depicted men ‘as extraordinary and adventurous – scientific and career-based in the case of the astronauts and physical in the case of the athlete’, whereas the ad featured a woman sitting on a park bench next to a pram. The ASA concluded that the advert gave the impression that only men could be in extraordinary environments, ‘carrying out adventurous activities’, while giving the impression that women had to be ‘passive’ or engaged in a ‘care-giving role’. Accordingly, the ASA ruled that the ‘ad must not appear again’.

Exhibit two: an advert for Philadelphia cheese. It features two men, each with a baby, meeting in a restaurant by a conveyor belt of food. One says to the other, ‘New dad, too?’, and the other nods. The men then get distracted by offerings of Philadelphia cheese. Meanwhile, their babies are harmlessly travelling on the conveyor belt before the fathers notice, move across the room and pick them up. And to make light of it one of the men says to his baby, ‘Let’s not tell mum’.

The humorous indiscretion of two men in the face of Philadelphia cheese was evidence to the ASA of the stereotype that men are ‘unable to care for the children effectively’. This is such a calumny on the care-giving abilities of fatherhood, argued the ASA, that the ad had to be banned, before other men are led to believe that caring for children is only for women.

Stereotypes have received a bad press, but they are invariably based on truth. Hence, the use of men when an advertiser wants to appeal to our sense of adventure or physical prowess, and the use of women when an advertiser wants to create a sense of calm or empathy. If the gender roles in each of the two offending adverts had been reversed, the ads would have jarred with public perception and reality, and have been less funny.

In reality, men and women play different roles in society and these differences give rise to stereotypes. There are behaviours and characteristics that are associated with being male, just as there are different ones associated with being female. These gender roles develop from a combination of nature, nurture and self-will. This process happens within a framework of social need. The process of socialisation from birth onwards shapes individuals to play the roles that society needs. As society’s needs change, so the roles of men and women change. In other words, gender roles reflect the social needs of the day.

Most people have no problem with the differing roles played by women and men. For example, only three people complained to the ASA about the Volkswagen advert. And most people don’t feel trapped by gendered roles portrayed in adverts.

But the ASA, and much of today’s political elite, is not interested in gender roles that meet the needs and concerns of most people; its focus is on the aspirations of a few top women. And to this end it reshapes society, through ad bans, to serve their narrow interests.

Lucas wants women (and only women) to run the country. At least Ella Smillie only wants ‘equal representation’ for public-office holders. But both are seeking privileges for top women like them. They seek to challenge the notion that promotion should be based on effort and merit in favour of an approach that rewards top women because they are women. This self-serving clique with its associated ideology is harmful for society. Men and women should be left alone to perform the roles they choose, without any nannying oversight from those engaged in social engineering.


Brexit has defined elitism in Britain

And shown what a nasty and hate-filled lot the elitists are. Just as abusive as  Trump's "swamp"


Until last Thursday, when an EU lawyer uncovered and published my identity on Twitter, I tweeted under the name of CKB.

I’d started tweeting in January 2019 after becoming increasingly frustrated by the response of the British elite to the decision of the electorate in 2016 to leave the EU.

As a lawyer myself, I tweeted mostly about EU and UK constitutional law, but I also attempted to critique the ideology and behaviour of a Remainer fundamentalist group that is active on Twitter – known as #FBPE (Follow Back, Pro-EU).

I must have done something right, as by July 2019 my Twitter account had almost 9,000 followers. I made traditional, moderate, liberal, Eurosceptic arguments centred on the freedom of the individual, the legislative supremacy of parliament, the rule of law and the democratic ideal.

The #FBPE people didn’t like it. They were quite open about the fact that they organised mass reporting of my tweets in an attempt to get my account suspended. Ultimately they were successful and my account was permanently suspended last Thursday.

While I regret being unable to participate in the Brexit debate on that platform, I realise that ‘Leaver gets thrown off Twitter’ is hardly big news. Twitter is becoming a notoriously censorious and pitiful place to attempt to discuss anything remotely controversial.

A substantial group of (probably sociopathic) elitists have seized the opportunity provided by Brexit to insult, humiliate, degrade and belittle strangers.

Aside from the tedious daily allegations of racism, hyper-nationalism, xenophobia, empire-fetishism and British exceptionalism, I was frequently compared to automata (‘Brexit bot’), swine flesh (‘gammon’), body parts (‘Brectum’), and pre-human hominids (‘Neanderthal’, ‘knuckle-dragger’), and accused of being mentally deficient (‘Brextard’) and morally reprehensible (‘Brexit jihadi’).

All of the insults used by the #FBPE set against Leavers have one thing in common – they deprive the Leave supporter of his or her basic humanity. They are all dehumanising insults.

I believe that for the first time in many years, a substantial section of our society has become possessed by a supremacist ideology. The Remain Übermensch is utterly convinced of his or her inherent intellectual, educational, moral, philosophical, social and even aesthetical superiority.

I work in the legal profession and I live in uber-woke Chorlton, an affluent, lefty, hipster-ish suburb of Manchester. All three environments – the legal profession, Chorlton and the Twittersphere – are riddled with a nasty (and new) kind of snobbery. I’m not talking about Mrs Bucket-style social climbing and affectation. That is harmless enough. I’m talking about a cruel and immoral belief that one’s own class is immeasurably superior to another. The #FBPE set hates the ‘Gammon Mass’ with a passion reminiscent of the Indian caste system.

At a posh bar in Chorlton not so long ago, I found myself sat at a table with five of the mums from the school my children attend. One said with disgust on her face that she ‘could never live in one of those awful, sh****y towns full of hideous Brexity types’. The other mums all agreed.

As a person who grew up in a pit village in the north-east, I felt a surge of anger towards them. I’m not ashamed to admit it. It was born of love for my family and my lifelong friends from home. It was born of a sense of injustice that this privileged and fortunate group of mums could talk so spitefully about people who are dear to me.

When did this group of self-proclaimed progressives not only stop caring about the interests of the British poor, but come to actively hate them? It seems that the answer is at the point when they dared to vote for Brexit.

Leaving the EU is a big political, legal, economic, constitutional, geopolitical, financial, trade and commercial decision. It is the type of decision traditionally taken by political, legal and business elites – the people who sit in the first-class compartment on the train of our national life.

In June 2016, the train was de-classified and millions of ‘gammon’ plebs invaded the quiet, middle-class comfort of the elites. They have still not recovered from it. It has driven them half mad with fury. They are overwhelmed by spite and malice. Their response has been brutal and swift, and we haven’t seen the last of it yet.


Loony Psychiatrist: Trump 'May Be Responsible for Many More Millions of Deaths' than Hitler. Stalin, and Mao

Couldn't he have just called Trump "crazy" and let it go at that? pparently, no. The former chairman of the Psychiatry Department at Duke University, Dr. Alan Frances, said on CNN it was an insult to the mentally ill to call Trump crazy.

"Well, I think 'medicalizing' politics has three very dire consequences. The first is that it stigmatizes the mentally ill. I’ve known thousands of patients, almost all of them are well-behaved, well-mannered good people. Trump is none of these. Lumping that is a terrible insult to the mentally ill and they have enough problems and stigma as it is," he said.

I'm sure they're "well behaved" and "good people" -- until some voice in their head tells them to shoot up a mall or a bar. Patients who go off their meds are wildly unpredictable. Not all become violent, of course. But the number of mass shooters who had no business walking the streets and ended up bringing tragedy to communities is more than we can bear.

So, rather than "stigmatize" mentally ill people, it's better that they murder a few people rather than hurt their feelings.

But don't call Trump "mentally ill," said Dr. Frances:

"Second, calling Trump crazy hides the fact that we’re crazy for having elected him and even crazier for allowing his crazy policies to persist," Frances went on. "Trump is as destructive a person in this century as Hitler, Stalin, Mao in the last century. He may be responsible for many more million deaths than they were."

For the record, Mao murdered at least 45 million in his "Great Leap Forward" that included the "Cultural Revolution" where tens of thousands of students and workers blanketed the countryside holding drum head trials of those they considered insufficiently devoted to the cause.

The body count for Stalin is still being toted up. It's believed that about 20 million Kulaks died as a direct result of "forced collectivization" of farms and prisoners in labor camps. Purges of the military and Communist Party resulted in tens of thousands of more deaths.

Hitler murdered another 11 million while being solely responsible for starting a war that killed 50 million more.

Wow. Trump must have been busy these last few years.

The ease with which Dr. Frances casually dropped the "many million deaths" charge is astonishing. And CNN host Brian Stelter let him get away with it.

Stelter later apologized claiming he never heard the comment, but he was "distracted by tech difficulties."

Brian Stelter: I agree that I should have interrupted after that line. I wish I had heard him say it, but I was distracted by tech difficulties (that's why the show open didn't look the way it normally does, I had two computers at the table, etc). Not hearing the comment is my fault.

I'm sure that if Stelter actually heard what the doctor said, he would have cut off Dr. Frances immediately and forced him to back that claim up with facts. Aren't you sure too?

It appears that in the case of Dr. Frances, the lunatics are running the asylum.


Australia: Nina Funnell has been very busy

Bettina Arndt 

Nina Funnell is a rape survivor who has built her journalism career exaggerating the risk of rape to young women at our universities. She’s the key spokesperson for End Rape on Campus which played a significant role in prompting the Human Rights Commission’s survey on sexual assault and harassment. Then, when that proved a fizzer, her organisation still bullied universities into measures to tackle ‘sexual violence’ – like sexual consent courses, rape crisis lines and so on. She’s currently trying to persuade universities to do new surveys, trying to cook the results more to her satisfaction.

In the past two years Funnell has published nine articles which attack me or include material designed to damage my professional reputation – plus there was a Sixty Minutes programme, a recent ABC 7.30 Report and numerous other newspaper reports based on the damaging material she has been promoting, using material she has clearly supplied to the journalists.

Last year she linked the rape and murder of the La Trobe student Aya Maarsarwe to my campus tour in an article in The Saturday Paper. I posted a detailed analysis of the many inaccuracies in that article on my Facebook page and encouraged my readers to report her to the Press Council.

Clearly my loyal followers did their homework because I then suddenly received a letter from a female law firm threatening defamation action over that post. This petered out following a letter from the formidable Brisbane QC Tony Morris, who is well-known for successfully defending the QUT students in the indigenous computer lab scandal.

Morris wrote to Funnell’s lawyers saying we did not wish to discourage her from commencing legal proceedings. “Ms Arndt cannot conceive of a better way to ventilate the issues about which she is passionate, than at a trial where the focus of the tribunal of fact will be as to your client’s honesty, integrity and professionalism as a journalist.”

Yet most of the Funnell attacks relate to a YouTube video I made with Nico Bester, a Tasmanian teacher who went to prison for having a sexual relationship with one of his students. I decided to interview Bester after a judge spoke out against vigilante justice when feminist activists were targeting him following his release from prison, trying to stop him studying for a PhD at the University of Tasmania. In that interview I condemned Bester’s criminal actions, we discussed the seriousness of his crime and agreed his prison sentence was absolutely appropriate.

Funnell is persistently using carefully selected edits from that video, taking comments out of context to suggest I’m a pederast apologist. See the blog in which I explained all this following the ferocious 60 Minutes attack on me last year, where Funnell launched her  “Let Her Speak” campaign to allow Bester’s victim to speak about what happened. Tasmania has now changed its laws to allow sexual abuse victims to go public – which has enabled Funnell to launch a new wave of attacks on me as part of the victim’s new version of events involving Bester, which differ significantly from the evidence presented in the criminal trial.

Apart from all this, there have also been two complaints in the last six months to the NSW Health Care Complaints Commission claiming I am misrepresenting my professional qualifications. Both times the Commission dismissed the complaint. I am always careful when describing my qualifications to say that I “trained as a clinical psychologist,” rather than suggesting I am currently practising.  I haven’t worked in this field for over 40 years but it’s difficult to avoid inaccurate descriptions appearing occasionally in the media.

It’s obvious that people are gunning for me. My next campus talk is in September at UNSW and social media chat from one of the feminist campus groups revealed End Rape on Campus has “confidential damning information” on me which they plan to release prior to the event.

Via email from


Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the  incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.

American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of  other countries.  The only real difference, however, is how much power they have.  In America, their power is limited by democracy.  To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already  very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges.  They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did:  None.  So look to the colleges to see  what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way.  It would be a dictatorship.

For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH,   EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS and  DISSECTING LEFTISM.   My Home Pages are here or   here or   here.  Email me (John Ray) here.  Email me (John Ray) here


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