This hasn’t been working for me lately. Something GorT did, I heard, but I seem to have found my way back in.
‘Puter was bored so he wrote a song. Actually, he didn’t write a song. ‘Puter stole the music and rewrote the lyrics to make an irreverent parody song which he hopes offends the artist who actually did write the song.
Want to hear it? Too bad. Here goes.
C’ronavirus (Stay Home Tonight), by ‘Puter Gormogon*
Spread out now C’rona, doctors can’t figure out your strains,
You know knocking Boomers off is a killer virus’ game.
You bump off emphysem-iacs, then kill off obese ones,
And together we’re gonna go out tonight and make morgues overrun.
You don’t have to call me Fauci, C’rona, and I don’t want be your vict-um
The only code I’m ever gonna need’s your RNA transcription.
And C’rona, you’re the one!
Pelosi’s in the Congress, baby, holding up our cash,
And Schumer’s downtown in front of cameras, spoutin’ out his lies to Dana Bash.
Papa’s on his deathbed, gasping hard for air,
Mama, she’s dialing 911, praying they get there.
She’ll be there on that line when Papa ends his time ‘cause you know he’ll spit the bit.
You ain’t here to spare us, baby, you’ve turned our lives to shit!
And C’rona, you’re the tits!
C’ronavirus, prognosis is quiet dire!
COVID 19, set the world on fire!
I just want to have a vaccine, no liar!
C’ronavirus, econ’my’s gone, entire!
Andy Cuomo and Blackface Northam, don’t you know they’re gonna lockdown!
Florida and NOLA’s mayor, they’re gonna let you run around!
We’re gonna hack and drool, cancel school,
React like fools, stay up all night, a-holes clenched tight.
So C’rona pass over tonight, Grim Reaper, pass over tonight!
Hamptons are for cheaters, Elmhurst’s for the poors,
Home feeds for reporters, Ittly’s on the floor,
So kill us C’rona, that’s what you’re here for!
C’ronavirus, prognosis is quiet dire!
COVID 19, set the world on fire!
I just want to have a vaccine, no liar!
C’ronavirus, econ’my’s gone, entire!
Now I know the Chinese, they don’t like you, ‘cause you killed their economy command,
And I know Brits, they don’t dig you, BoJo never did understand,
Gubmint lowered the boom, they locked us in our rooms, with our Netflix on demand,
Docs’ll medicate us, intubate us, no one will hold our hands.
Someday we’ll look back on this and it will not seem funny.
Right now you’re bad, you’ve made us sad,
And the Dems are glad to see that we don’t have any money,
The Dems are glad to see that we don’t have any money,
Oh, the Dems are glad to see that we don’t have any money,
Well tell Dems this is their last chance, to turn us into mendicants,
‘Cause the pharma company, C’rona, just broke through a big advance!
Now the testing’s strong and you’re almost gone, but Lord have mercy,
First vaccine was a dud, bodies heaped in the mud somewhere in the swamps of Jersey.
Well, hold out, right! We’ll make it all right, ‘cause C’rona we’re coming on strong,
By the time we meet this June’s strong light, you’ll probably be gone.
I know a creepy little place in Northern California, up San Francisco way,
There’s a little lab, eh, where gene sims run all night and all day,
Servers in the back rooms humming,
So hold tight, C’rona, ‘cause don’t you know a cure is coming!
C’ronavirus, prognosis is quiet dire!
COVID 19, set the world on fire!
I just want to have a vaccine, no liar!
C’ronavirus, econ’my’s gone, entire!
That’s it. That’s the song. Didn’t like it? Too frikkin’ bad. You’re not paying for this. Just shut up and enjoy the free entertainment. After all, you’re locked in and have nothing else to do.
*And that godless commie, Bruce Springsteen
So amidst the Coronavirus, companies are struggling – particularly travel and hospitality industry ones, including bars, restaurants, etc. Various discussions around government bailouts have been started and a stimulus package is making its way through Congress. Former presidential candidate, Elizabeth Warren waded into the fray with a set of requirements that she would levy upon companies accepting federal government bailouts:
- Companies must maintain payrolls and use federal funds to keep people working.
- Businesses must provide $15 an hour minimum wage quickly but no later than a year from the end
- Companies would be permanently banned from engaging in stock buybacks.
- Companies would be barred from paying out dividends or executive bonuses while they receive federal funds and the ban would be in place for three years.
- Businesses would have to provide at least one seat to workers on their board of directors, though it could be more depending on size of the rescue package.
- Collective bargaining agreements must remain in place.
- Corporate boards must get shareholder approval for all political spending.
- CEOs must certify their companies are complying with the rules and face criminal penalties for violating them.
Let’s get this out of the way, none of these were ever floated as requirements when previous administrations did bailouts. Regardless, let’s take apart the various, stupid ideas above:
Maybe out of all of these, I could agree with number one the most. Still, the idea of the government dictating how a private sector business should operate is insane to me. Changing employment levels is a routine course of action for companies. Under this provision, a company that was already planning on ramping down efforts that accepts the bailout, would have to keep those employees on…for some unspecified amount of time. What are these employees supposed to work on? Sit around and play games, watch the news, or pick their noses?
Number two has been a rallying cry among Democrats recently. Requiring a $15 minimum wage only increases costs on the books of the company. In order to address this, companies will raise prices to customers and therefore drive up costs to consumers. For those not at the very bottom of the wage scale will see increased prices but no increase in wages to offset the costs and therefore most savvy consumers will start to reduce spending and be more selective in purchasing. Basically, a tightening of consumer spending will take place. This isn’t good for the economy and reduces the growth at a time when we need to quickly recover from this set back. This advocacy by the Democrats only reinforces my belief that they really do not understand economics*
I just don’t get number three. There are a few reasons why a company would engage in stock buybacks – for example, for larger companies, it can be a preferred way to return cash to its shareholders rather than issuing a dividend. But in the end, the decision is really about trying to tune the company’s key financial metrics. This affects how it gets evaluated by investors. Having the federal government remove this lever it absurd and, again, goes back to the understanding the economy point I made in the previous paragraph.
“Companies would be barred from paying out dividends or executive bonuses while they receive federal funds and the ban would be in place for three years” Sigh. They really don’t get how the economy works, do they? There are a number of aspects to this one. While bonuses sound like a luxury, people should remember that at a lot of companies for financially conservation reasons, employees reaching high levels of salary compensation might be frozen at a certain salary level and annual bonuses make up any additional take-home pay growth. Dividends are paid to investors. That could be your 401k fund, a mutual fund you own, or maybe part of your non-retirement investing strategy. So what Elizabeth Warren is saying here is that she wants to take away money from you and your retirement funds.
Again, these requirements largely have nothing to do with good economic practices or recovery steps from the situation in which we find ourselves. Putting one or more employees on the Board of Directors for a company is this idea that liberals have where they think there’s this big “us” vs “them” within companies. I really question whether they understand what a Board of Directors does and what is expected and required of a board member. I doubt a random employee could effectively do the job mostly do to a lack of experience.
Of course, the Democrats echo what they know and seek to protect unions through ensuring collective bargaining agreements stay in place. Hey, while we’re at it, Sen Warren, let’s end and ban all public sector unions and really dig into union leaders who have outrageous salaries. Ready to go there? No? I didn’t think so.
Sen Warren also wants to mandate that companies must have shareholder approval for any political spending. So she wants companies to have to spend more time and effort in coordinating a shareholder vote for any political spending? Right, companies should have to work more inefficiently is exactly what we need at this time. I don’t think I can face-palm any hard than I am already. Is there any question why she isn’t in the race for president anymore?
Look, I’m no big fan of government bailouts. I get that we need to do something when the country faces crises like this where for public safety, national security, or other major reasons companies are negatively impacted. Individuals should strive to have some personal safety net but even then for some it’s really hard to build that up in the light of medical issues, tragedies, and other unexpected circumstances. Having said all that, any restrictions that are placed on companies should be done in the light of making sure that we reduce the recovery time as best as possible and encourage quick growth. Elizabeth Warren should stay out of this – she clearly doesn’t understand it.
* I’m looking at you, Paul Krugman
You’ve heard the expression a bunch of times by now: “Get woke, go broke.”
This simple four-word social media response often follows news stories about popular media events suffering huge financial losses after bending to Leftist diversity stereotypes. You heard it with the financial collapse of comic books, ratings dumps for popular television shows, and poor critical response of tentpole pictures. You’ll be hearing it a lot (a lot) with the upcoming James Bond movie, which is already rumored to be beyond subpar in quality.
Basically, what happens is this: 21st Century Diversity wardens swoop into an enjoyable or harmless franchise and immediately demand More Inclusion!!! at every step, even if it doesn’t make sense. Suddenly, the swashbuckling hero is replaced with a transsexual Muslim Filipina with a harelip. Or the smart-as-a-whip princess with the gorgeous figure becomes a corpulent Latina with a sassy attitude and an endless supply of meme phrases and hand gestures. All villains had to be good-looking white males.
Much of this started almost 20 years back, when the producers of the rebooted Battlestar Galactica series elected to replace the male comedic relief sidekick (Dirk Benedict, playing every character he’s ever played the same dopey way) with a tough-as-nails, scrappy woman with a drinking issue (Katee Sackhoff). There was good news and bad news: the good news was Sackhoff played the character way better than Benedict ever did, with a fascinating story of abuse and neglect turning the character into a driven survivor who never gives up. The bad news was she did such a great job that there was now a race to see what other changes producers could bring into tired storylines.
The Czar really liked Sackhoff’s brutal performance, and would have been okay if other franchises made changes of a similar nature.
Alas, this was not to be: from now on, producers and directors wanted to see just how much More Inclusion!!! they could jam into everything they could, whether or not it made sense or, in some cases, it was even plausible. See, it’s not just enough to consider replacing one of the Ghostbusters with a female; we had to replace all of them with three identical white females and one stereotypical black female.
But that’s nowhere near enough to ruin a franchise or even bomb a movie, because there’s no inherent reason that premise couldn’t work, or to put it the other way, there’s no reason that premise was certain to fail. The Czar thinks he knows why all these More Inclusion!!! books, films, shows, and series are all tanking.
The reason: because the viewers know it’s all horseshit.
Hollywood, whether it’s a movie, a show, or whatever, is the last freaking establishment that should be lecturing us about inclusion.
When a director or producer tries to sell us on the idea that women are every bit as good as men in a commanding or leadership role, well, it’s tough to accept this in the Me Too era. Yeah, we can buy a talking raccoon and a walking tree shooting apart alien spacecraft, but hearing about a fictional woman using her strength and intelligence to overpower the sexism of men is a little far-fetched when the movie was produced by Weinstein.
A couple of films starring a mostly-black cast tank at the box office, and it must be our fault because we’re all so racist, says Hollywood, whose record at hiring, using, starring, trusting, or rewarding black talent in the motion picture industry is worse than an Alabama Woolworth in 1950. Surely that’s our fault.
Perhaps what the last Terminator movie needed was a racially diverse cast, decided a room full of aging producers who are all white men that attend Temple Israel on Hollywood Boulevard.
And don’t get the Czar started about racist complaints about putting black actors in lead roles in the Star Wars or Marvel franchises when it’s soon revealed the so-called complaints started within (and were largely limited to) the films’ distribution offices as a way to fire up controversy and ticket sales.
The Czar could go on and on, and probably will, later when he’s been drinking and you’re already asleep. The point is that the people behind the Woke messaging—not just Hollywood, but the whole Woke movements—are such blatant hypocrites that it’s like hearing an overt atheist lecture you on why you need to attend religious services more often. It’s so out of character that it immediately rings hollow.
And it’s easy to point to a book, movie, or show after the release and say “Well, its preening lectures turned me off so I gave up on it.” That’s understandable enough. But audiences have been so beat up by this obvious hypocrisy that they already know to give up on something before giving it a chance. That’s why the Ghostbusters movie flopped on the first day: audiences already knew what it was going to be. That’s why the Picard show is getting such dismal reviews on Rotten Tomatoes: we don’t need sexist, racist, homophobic bastards screaming at us repeatedly about how awful we are as viewers when it comes to women, minorities, and gays.
Because we’re way ahead of you, there, guys (the Czar is pretty safe on using that word). And just like we don’t need Bernie Sanders lecturing us on how economics works, we really don’t need pop culture lecturing us on how society works. We’ve been part of it a long time, ourselves. So we skip your movie, your show, your book, your musical, or your concert and instead do things we’d enjoy. And that’s why you go broke.
Social Security. To even mention the words in other than the most laudatory tones is to invite the wrath of Democrats and old people. ‘Puter, of course, cares not what Democrats or old people think of him. ‘Puter cares only for the truth.
So what’s the truth about Social Security? Which truth? There are a whole bunch of inconvenient truths as one wag once said. Here are but a few.
Truth 1: Social Security is a Ponzi scheme.
Ponzi schemes are where an “investment manager” takes “investors’” money, promising them great riches and wealth because he’s found the perfect, foolproof investment. The “manager” collects the funds, spends them, and pays out “investors” with funds taken in from future investors. The scheme can work for a time, even a long while, but eventually the scheme crashes. And when the inevitable crash comes, the only people who get their money back are the first investors who request their money back, if even them.
Social Security’s been this type of con from the start but one that was cleverly structured to work for a time. There are a few reasons it’s worked this long.
Unlike the usual Ponzi scheme, participation is mandatory. Con men have to go find marks and convince them to participate. Government simply forces all employers and all workers to participate. Much easier to find marks when you can require everyone be a mark.
Initially there were far more workers paying into Social Security’s so-called trust fund than were elibile to receive benefits. It’s tough to go bankrupt when way more money’s coming in than going out, so Social Security self-funded for a time. In fact, it threw off scads of excess money. More on that later.
Also, the eligibility age for Social Security was set such that more than half of Americans died before reaching the eligibility age. So long as there were way more people paying in than taking out, Social Security’ Ponzi scheme rolled on.
The hook New Deal Democrats used (and it was a brilliant hook) to sell Social Security to the public (aside from it being the Great Depression when everything sucked and pretty much everyone was broke) was everyone pays in now and everyone gets out way more than they ever paid later.
Truth 2: Social Security is flat broke.
The dirty little secret is Social Security’s pretty much always been bankrupt. But now Social Security’s officially broke. Costs will exceed income in 2020 and the so-called trust fund will be depleted by 2035. This is going to take some ‘splaining.
This is how Social Security works. You and your employer each pay 6.2% of your income in Old Age, Survivor, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) tax, docked straight out of your paycheck. Hence, OASDI’s often referred to as a payroll tax. When all your sweet, sweet Benjamins roll in the door, the Social Security Administration (SSA) spends every last penny in one of two ways. It’s either spent on benefits and administrative costs or, if there are any excess funds, those funds are by law invested “in special Treasury bonds that are guaranteed by the U.S. Government. A market rate of interest is paid to the trust funds on the bonds they hold, and when those bonds reach maturity or are needed to pay benefits, the Treasury redeems them.” Got that?*
“But ‘Puter! There are, like, totes US Treasury bonds in the trust fund! Social Security’s, like, completely not broke at all! MUH LOCK BOX!!1!,” Al Gore shouts from high above the Atlantic on his private jet returning from Davos to his energy-guzzling 10,000 square foot eight bedroom mansion outside Nashville.
Calm your tits, people. ‘Puter’s going to explain.
What are bonds? They’re government issued IOUs. And how does the government repay bonds when they’re redeemed or mature? Well, the government uses tax money to repay them. And where’s that tax money come from? It comes from non-OASDI taxes. Basically, it comes from your income taxes.
When the SSA has to dip into its so-called trust fund, chock full of IOUs, it’s broke. It’s admitting that there’s more going out than coming in. It’s running at a loss. As we see above, we’ve arrived at this point in 2020. But what about the Treasury bonds in the trust account? Those bonds aren’t assets, they’re liabilities. They’re IOUs. The IOUs are being paid to the holder (the federal government) by … the federal government. It’s literally a zero sum (or perhaps negative sum, depending on interest costs, etc.) transaction. There’s no there there.
Think of it this way. You’re the federal government. You deposit a $1,000 check you wrote yourself to your checking account. The check is drawn from the same account into which you’re depositing said check. This account started with $0. You know insist to the bank that you now have $1,000 in your account. You have the same $0 you started with, no matter how big the check your write is.
Or maybe this way works better for you. Under counterintuitive government accounting, the SSA treats the Treasury bonds (IOUs, remember?) as assets even though it’s the government repaying itself for misusing your tax payments the first time by taxing you a second time to repay the funds you already paid the first time. Understand? Probably not. Go back and read the unintelligible sentence until you grok what ‘Puter’s laying down then come back. ‘Puter’ll wait.
You’ve paid into Social Security for years, maybe decades. That money’s gone, used to either pay benefits or buy Treasury bonds (which in this instance are functionally worthless to the taxpayer). Any dollar you pay in OASDI today is going to pay Boomers’ benefits and it’s still not enough to meet the total payout.
Even if you don’t buy ‘Puter’s totally awesome “the bonds are worthless” argument, the SSA admits it will rapidly cash in its trust fund bonds/IOUs government wrote to itself (which as ‘Puter just showed you are worthless in the first instance) to make up the difference. In the most favorable light to government,
Social Security’s somewhere between the “people getting wise to the con” stage and the “total collapse and bankruptcy” stage of this Ponzi scheme.
Truth 3: Social Security isn’t a national pension.
Social Security was never intended to function as a pension.** It was intended to be an insurance policy. It was intended to insure that elderly people who were unable to do any work wouldn’t be homeless and starve in the streets.
In the most favorable light, Social Security’s akin to term life insurance. You pay a low amount for a large benefit if you die during the policy’s term. The insurer’s banking that the rates it’s charging you and everyone else, invested at a decent rate of return, will be sufficient to pay out the claims as made. Insurers also figure that most people they’re insuring aren’t going to die during the policy term. This is why they can charge you a relatively small rate for a large benefit. It’s also why life insurance gets prohibitively expensive as one ages. Everyone dies, and you’re likelier to die in a given period the older you get so you’re going to pay way more for coverage as the insured against risk (you croaking) has a high probability of occurring.
Social Security’s like this superficially, but Congress hasn’t permitted the SSA to charge policy holders (taxpayers) sufficient rates to cover the risk (lifetime payouts). Nor is SSA permitted to raise the eligibility age (risk rate) to ensure there are sufficient funds to meet reasonably assumed obligations. Last, unlike insurers, the SSA’s required to invest in the lowest returning investment instruments known to man. US Treasury bonds pay ultra-low interest rates, generally below the inflation rate meaning over time the SSA’s “investment” is losing money. Insurers invest in a low-risk portfolio, but one that will exceed the rate of inflation by at least a few percentage points so their portfolios generally gain.***
The biggest reason Social Security isn’t a pension plan is because Congress is free to change the terms and conditions of the program any time it wants. If Congress can crater a program you’ve paid into for years in good faith, it’s not a pension. Congress can even cancel Social Security entirely if it so chooses. Here’s the language ‘Puter lifted from his Social Security statement.****
Your estimated benefits are based on current law. Congress has made changes to the law in the past and can do so at any time. The law governing benefit amounts may change because, by 2035, the payroll taxes collected will be enough to pay only about 80 percent of scheduled benefits.*****
If you thought the money you paid over the years and decades was invested in a kind of public 401k, you’re like most Americans: morons who didn’t read the terms and conditions of the program you signed on for. Admittedly, the government’s going to ding your paycheck (and your employer) for 6.2% of your salary every paycheck whether you consent to it or not. But you’re still an idiot if you believed Social Security was a pension.
Truth 4: Social Security is a bad deal for you and for everyone else.
‘Puter ran some numbers. For ease of calculation (if Gracie were here, he would’ve used more complicated ones because she’s like some sort of Excel idiot savant), ‘Puter used the SSA’s benefit estimator.
‘Puter entered $50,000 for a hypothetical worker’s current year income, a birth date of January 1, 1970, and a retirement date of June 1, 2067 (67 years, 6 months of age). The SSA made income assumptions based on this information (lower early year earnings but $50,000 per year from now until retirement) and calculated a monthly benefit of $3,235 per month (in future dollars).
Even if we assume this worker made $50,000 for the entirety of her career (which the SSA did not assume), the total employer and employee contribution would be $279,000. ‘Puter’s best guess is that total contributions would be closer to $150,000 (probably even less) based on the SSA’s assumptions.
Assuming the higher OASDI tax paid amount, this worker would receive more benefits than amounts paid in a little over 7 years. The worker would be 74 years old and would have taken out every single penny she paid in, then transforming into a welfare recipient living off that sweet, sweet sucker taxpayer dime.
Assuming the lower OASDI tax paid amount, this worker would receive more benefits than lifetime OASDI tax paid in just shy of 4 years. The worker would be just 71 years old and already on the dole.
The current average life expectancy for an American male alive at 67 years old is about 83. A woman of the same age can expect on average to live until about 86. That’s about 9 and 12 years respectively of this worker living off the dole.
Or, using the assumptions on benefits, the male would get $349,380 in unearned benefits. The female would get $465,840 in benefits she didn’t pay for. This is 1.66x more than the woman ever paid in and 1.25x in the case of a man.
‘Puter assumes most of you would argue that while it’s a completely crap deal for the taxpayers, it’s actually a really good deal for the recipients. And you’d be right. Except it ain’t that easy.
If you invested that money yourself over the course of your career, you’d do much, much better.
If you assumed level annual investments of $6,200 (the $50,000 annual wage multiplied by the 12.4% OASDI tax over a 45-year period (the assumed career time) at a 6% rate (which is conservative), the person would’ve had roughly $1,400,000. Even without calculating any future compounding after retirement, it would take the assumed worker of either sex 36 years to burn through the money.
You’d have to live to be 103 to exhaust the fund and nearly all Americans ain’t getting there.
Even assuming average OASDI taxes of, let’s say, $4,000 annually (a $33,300 annual salary), you still end up with about $900,000. It’d take you 23 years to exhaust the funds which exceeds the life expectancies for a male or female 67-year-old.
Assuming an even lower OASDI tax payment of $3,000 annually (a $25,000 annual salary), you still end up with about $675,000. If you assumed you’d only live another 20 years after retirement at 67, you’d still have $2,800 per month which would equate to an annual salary of $33,600 which is more than you ever made in a year during your career.
And if you went crazy and invested in an S&P 500 index fund and assumed the average annualized total return for the index over the last 90 years of 9.8%, you’d have a lot more money than that. How much?
Under the $3,000 assumption, you’d have about $2,225,000. Under the $4,000 assumption, you’d have about $2,965,000. Under the $6,200 assumption, you’d have about $4,500,000. The power of compounding and investing smaller amounts over time for the long haul is for real, bitches.
So yeah. ‘Puter stands fully behind his assertion that both you and the taxpayers are getting royally screwed by Social Security.
Final Truth: It’s not the SSA’s fault you’re getting screwed.
It’s Congress’ fault completely and totally. Congress created this program.
If you’re angry after reading this, call your representatives and senators and light them up for creating a Ponzi scheme that’s bankrupting the nation and ultimately returns far less to you than if they’d simply mandated you invest the funds yourself.
* For purposes of this post, ‘Puter doesn’t address the dipshittery of investing funds in low-yield government instruments when you’re selling Social Security to Americans as a pension fund. That is, making one or two percent on 10 year bonds ain’t gonna get closing to meeting the needs of millions of people when considering inflation. The SSA really should’ve at least moved a portion of the portfolio into the market.
** ‘Puter’s using pension here even though it would be more accurate to use “retirement plan” since a pension’s technically not your money. It’s a contractual promise by an employer to pay you defined benefits on retirement. Employers are free to breach this contractual promise and many do so, especially through Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructures.
*** Don’t even get ‘Puter started on how quantitative easing and the Federal Reserve Bank holding interest rates extremely and arguably artificially low for more than a decade now have f*cked investors of all types looking for low risk investments with yields in excess of inflation.
**** If you haven’t looked at your Social Security eligibility and benefits, you really ought to go to their website, create an account, and take a gander. The site is quite well done and intuitive. Kudos to the SSA at least on this issue.
***** ‘Puter reaches full eligibility age (67 for ‘Puter) in 2036. So he’s got that going for him.
Mrs. GorT and GorT watched the entire Democrat Debate last night on NBC. I can’t tell you how many times one of us was snickering or outright laughing and making a comment like, “this is pure entertainment gold.” Keep in mind, this is the ninth of twelve Democrat Debates and, unless you avoid the media and social media, you’ve probably heard what a mess it was. Let me break it down from my perspective.
We need to put this in context – these are six candidates who are vying for the nomination to run for the office of the President. The debate was held on primetime television on NBC with five moderators. In the end, I think anyone objectively watching it will be unable to find a President in that group.
First, if I were any part of the Democrat National Committee, I’d ban future debates from the NBC family. The moderators, particularly Lester Holt and Chuck Todd could not control the format at all even given that all of the candidates couldn’t abide by the rules laid out. This, in itself, should be telling about the candidates that they couldn’t follow simple debate rules. Instead, we got multiple occasions with at least two or three of the candidates arguing at each other (yes, at not with) and no one could make out what was being said or discussed. Candidates veered way off course from the questions asked with little to no course correction by the moderators. And finally, the NBC moderator questions rarely, if at all, drew out a discussion on substantive topics but rather focused on some of the candidates’ potentially problematic histories. Glaringly missing were any prods into Warren’s abuse of race to benefit herself, Buttigieg’s relative lack of experience at scale, Biden’s Ukrainian dealings and riding of Obama’s coattails, and Klobuchar’s temperment. Instead, it was focused on Sander’s socialism and Bloomberg’s various problems (stop-and-frisk, his wealth, and his possible mistreatment of women). The debate completely lacked any foreign diplomacy discussion save for a discussion around Klobuchar’s failure to remember the name of the president of Mexico. The brief section on climate change lacked any real substance and no challenge by any of the moderators. For example, the disposal of aging wind turbine blades, the environmental impact of the materials needed to build wind and solar farms, the explicit exclusion of nuclear power from the New Green Deal – all would have been beneficial areas to explore. And there were more discussions around “passing” various laws – many from the Senators (past and present) on the stage who sit (or sat) in Congress were this actually gets done*
I’d offer a winners and losers section to this post but I don’t think any candidate won that debate. I don’t think any of them carried themselves in a presidential manner. None of the distinguished themselves. Let’s take a look:
Elizabeth Warren spoke the most during the debate and likely interrupted the most. This was a change and she was more active in her participation but not in a good way (at least to me) as she was stepping on opponent’s times and cluttering the discussion. She had about a full minute more than any other candidate** She went after every other candidate on a range of issues and had some obviously planned canned quips to use. When it came time for her to speak about her plans, she came off as the grade school kid vying for class president promising longer recess, free pizza lunches, and no-homework Fridays. She claims that her 2¢ wealth tax would pay for free college, preschool, etc. etc. with a serious pander to minority voters on this.
Joe Biden, as Mrs. GorT observed, basically had one answer last night: “I’m the only one on stage who has done [insert topic]” Seriously, at least four times he used that crutch. Apparently, the Obama administration achieved nothing without Joe Biden. Biden didn’t engage on a lot and when he did, I would argue, he didn’t look good. He appeared to be struggling to remember what he wanted or needed to say. Along with Bloomberg, he had one of the two lowest speaking times – more than 3 minutes less than Warren.
Pete Buttigieg was clam and forward-looking but continues to struggle with a lack of experience at scale. He tried defending against that line of attack by Sen Klobuchar saying that the debate stage and being a mayor in middle America is still “an arena” but he isn’t dealing with the complexities and scale that a Congressional member has had to navigate. While potentially inspiring, Buttigieg did not distinguish himself policy-wise or in other areas. And he needs to fire his stylist for allowing him to go out half-shaven for the debate. It’s not No-Shave-November anymore, Pete, and the facial
hair stubble isn’t working.
Amy Klobuchar tried really hard to make this about putting a woman in the White House. She was second to Warren in total talk time. Every reference to what a President could do was “she” and on multiple occasions was very defensively making the case that she has the experience and know-how to be the President. It didn’t feel inviting or genuine but rather like a petulant adolescent stomping their feet arguing with mom and dad as to why it isn’t fair that she can’t stay out past 11pm on a school night. Apparently, she’s been the lead senator on a crap-ton of bills but I’m not sure that any of them really did much to address the top issues like immigration reform, environmental policies, taxes, etc.
Bernie Sanders is back to the yelling with the weird, jabbing hand gestures – gives me the shivers. Bloomberg delivered a good shot at Bernie over being a millionaire and owning three homes. Let’s put this in context with some data: as of 2017, 9.26 million Americans live in a household that owns a second home. This is down from ten years prior. Another statistic puts it around 4% of the country owns a second home. I’d guess that the percentage of three-party owners is 1% or less. Sanders admitted that he would levy an additional payroll tax – a tax that hits any working American – to help pay for his Medicare For All plan. Buttigieg did get in a good dig on Bernie saying that “ordinary Americans [feel] like leaders [aren’t] speaking to them, then I think that turning to someone like Mayor Bloomberg, who thinks he can buy this election, is no better a way to succeed than turning to somebody like Senator Sanders who wants to burn the house down”
And then there was Mike Bloomberg. I don’t think Bloomberg fared very well in this outing. He’s avoided getting beat up in eight previous debates and took a beating last night by his opponents over his wealth, his past policies – again, specifically stop-and-frisk, and a new attack on his past treatment of women and the NDAs he has with some. I think he attempted to rise above those attacks but he couldn’t. NBC directly targeted him through their line of questions. And simplifying the office of the President to a “manager” didn’t help his case. He talked the least and I think came off as nervous and unprepared for the attacks.
Liberal friends and relatives are on social media almost begging for the Democrat candidates not to rip each other apart as they try to focus on one thing – get Trump out of office. I don’t think NBC or the six remaining candidates did anything to help that. In fact, they probably armed Trump’s campaign staff with plenty of material. As one of our followers on Twitter tweeted, “It’s clear that Trump won that debate”
* Holy crap, we need to really look at our Civics curriculum in our schools. Even one of the local news stations had the following in a “can you pass a civics test” segment: “Who was President during the Great Depression and WWII?” That’s a history question not a civics question.
‘Puter’s been thinking a lot lately. It’s that time of the year, the beginning of the end of Upstate New York’s interminable season of frozen death. ‘Puter’s got plenty of time to brood, knocking back a Big Gulp or five of vodka and catching up on his backlog of Discovery Channel fish mating clips.
With Election 2020 in full swing, ‘Puter pondered the impact of Trump on conservative political values. Has Trump, as media, Democrats, and the Never Trump diehards claim, destroyed conservative norms? And what are those core, non-negotiable conservative norms in the first place? Is there a list of conservative values around which conservatives can unite?
Conservatism today is much different from the Morning in America Reagan conservatism ‘Puter grew up under. It’s different from the Gingrich/Limbaugh last trench conservatism ascendant in the 1990s. It’s different from the Tea Party conservatism of the 2000s. And it’s different from the conservatism media paints Trump as championing.
‘Puter thinks conservatism and conservatives can and should unite around a few core concepts with which all (or most) agree.
Honoring Rule of Law
Rule of law means each branch of government sticks to its own knitting. Each does the tasks expressly assigned it under the Constitution and no more. Each jealously guards its constitutional authority and fights to protect it from other branches’ overreach. And it means leaving things to the states that ought be left to the states.
Congress negotiates tough issues, compromises where at all possible, acts in good faith, and enacts laws actually getting things done for a change. Congress doesn’t punt hard decisions to executive branch agencies through cop out delegation or wait for things to get so bad the judiciary legislates from the bench.
The executive enforces the laws as written, surely and swiftly. It doesn’t end run Congress with executive orders or novel interpretations of “sex” in the Civil Rights Act, reading it to include sexual orientation and the mental disorder of gender dysphoria. The executive insists Congress authorize in an act of war any extra territorial foreign combat missions wherever possible. It enforces laws as written.
The judiciary refuses to legislate from the bench. It doesn’t magically discover rights emanating from the penumbras. It doesn’t make up things that don’t exist. The judiciary has the humility and self-control to say, “There is no such right recognized in the Constitution so it is up to you to seek redress from Congress who may or may not enact legislation creating the ‘right’ you seek. We will then review as appropriate the new law to ensure Congress acted within its legislative authority, as is our duty.”
For citizens, it means pushing Congress to get rid of dated or useless laws or regulations. It means understanding the fewer the laws there are, the freer we are. It means understanding basic civics and not screaming for government to ignore the Constitution. It means being consistent and understanding that if your side loses but the other side has properly followed the process, you’ve lost. Accept it.
Respecting Current and Future Taxpayers
This is ‘Puter’s attempt to encompass what’s generally called fiscal conservatism. Government should spend what it needs, not a penny more. It must consider the downside to the taxpayers footing the bill for these never-ending programs instead of just considering and fetishizing the benefits to the recipients. Every dollar government spends is a dollar a family somewhere doesn’t have to spend on itself.
It means dealing with fiscally irresponsible and unsustainable borrowing and deficits. This doesn’t mean all borrowing is bad or that running some deficit from time to time is bad. It does mean that decade after decade of profligate spending and insane borrowing even as tax revenues increase year over year is a crime. You’re stealing taxpayers’ current prosperity and preventing future generations from ever achieving the level of prosperity their parents had. You’re eating the nation’s seed corn.
Acknowledging Government Welfare Programs Are A Necessary Evil
This tenet is a tough sell. But Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid ain’t going nowhere, no matter how unconstitutional they were and are. Americans expect these benefits. Americans think of them as birthrights. Conservatives are correct that the programs are Ponzi schemes, but Americans don’t care. The best that can be done is to make the programs affordable and sustainable again.
We need to recognize there is a place for government support of the truly needy. This includes short-term support for the unemployed, short-term food aid, short-term housing aid, etc. The issue comes not in the short-term help but when government decides it needs to be a long-term solution to individuals’ problems. In permitting lifetime reliance on government for the able-bodied, you’re robbing generation after generation of the gifts of self-reliance and self-respect.
Adopt a mend, don’t end approach. Be clear that there is a role for some government welfare. If we don’t, we will be unelectable regardless of whether we are correct in the long run.
Championing the Freest Possible Markets
Get government out of the way of American business. This doesn’t mean complete deregulation. It means considering whether regulations are necessary instead of merely politically desirable. It means significantly reducing or eliminating lobbyist input, especially where industries are angling for anti-competitive or barrier to entry rules and regulations.
It means getting rid of all industry subsidies over time. No more industry specific tax breaks or support programs. No more protectionist tariffs where the international competition is acting in accordance with laws. If our industries can’t compete on equal terms and conditions, they need to get better, not get protected. This doesn’t mean leaving industry unprotected where other nations are rigging the system for their companies, though.
Supporting and Enforcing the Individual Rights of All People
This means decrying abortion and working to limit or eliminate it insofar as possible. Unborn Americans have rights, too.
It means supporting the rights of people to choose whom they want to love and doing so free of harassment or discrimination. In return, the LGBTQ community needs to understand tolerance doesn’t mean acceptance. It means you get to live just as freely as ‘Puter does but not more freely. It doesn’t mean supporting the entire LGBTQ agenda because much of the LGBTQ agenda is for active repression of others’ beliefs.
It means supporting minority communities in their legitimate complaints, many of which should be linked to education and criminal justice in ‘Puter’s humble opinion. It does not mean accepting open borders and unlimited immigration. Illegal aliens aren’t Americans, are breaking our laws, and are stealing money from America’s poor. We have no obligation to illegal aliens other than arresting, trying, and deporting them as swiftly as possible and not abusing them while in custody.
It means speaking up when anti-Semites attack Jews on NYC’s streets, white supremacists publicly advocate for race wars, or antifa asshats violently attack people on Portland’s streets like the brown shirts they are. It means not tolerating cancel culture or engaging in it yourself. It means, as the ACLU used to do before it sold its soul, defending people with whom you vigorously disagree when they’ve been objectively wronged by government or others.
Anyway, that’s enough for now. This was nothing more than an off-the-cuff, poorly thought out brain purge. You’ll disagree, ‘Puter’s sure, with one or more of these, but ‘Puter thinks these principles are a pretty good core for conservatives to unite around.
‘Puter’s back. He had to go all the way down to the Leaping Peacock to get a fresh handle of scotch. We had more scotch yesterday, but Czar got an early start on celebrating Czars Day and drank the Castle’s last three casks of scotch.*
In Part Uno of this piece, ‘Puter introduced you to Kimberly Probolus, the woman whose heartfelt and totally not ideological cri de coeur shamed the NYT into instituting sex-based quotas on its daily letters page. Quotas were required in order to guarantee the letters page is vajjed-up to the appropriate level, you see.**
Since we have previously established Ms. Probolus is a godless commie ideologue, we may now move on to her most recent letter, a letter celebrating her victory over meritocracy and by extension, Whitey T. Mann, that oppressive bastard.
Ms. Probolus regales us with a personal story in her letter’s opening. As all good academics know, anecdotes are totally reliable data points and we shouldn’t question in the back of our heads whether she made the entire thing up because it’s too good to check.
In short, Ms. Probolus says this summer she was introduced to a man at a party as “the woman who wrote the letter to The New York Times about why not enough women write letters to the editor.” She claims the man proceeded to talk about why women don’t write letters to the editor and about the NYT’s hot new vaj-quota system. She tells him again she’s the letter’s author. He then understands and feels bad.
Ms. Probolus claims “the man I encountered was not the least bit arrogant, displaying a boyish giddiness toward feminism. And yet, he could not hear the small blond woman standing right in front of him.” You would be wrong to think this sounds totally made up because it is most assuredly totally not made up.
From this anecdote, Ms. Probolus gets to her real issue.
But it’s not enough to ask women to speak up: to write more letters, to raise our voices, to “lean in.” The problem is not that women aren’t speaking up. As far back as ancient Greece — when Cassandra warned the Trojans about that giant wooden horse — women have been speaking loudly and clearly. The problem is that men aren’t listening.
You see, it’s not enough that the NYT now has ill-considered quotas which force it to ignore merit in favor of genitalia. Now we are called on to force only one of the sexes to do the bidding of the other sex. Men must be made to communicate with women in the style and manner which women would like, screw them and their preferences. She goes on down Man Bashing Lane in her SJW coupe at 137 miles per hour. Surely this will end well!
Male readers of The New York Times, this is about you. You who call yourselves feminists and attend women’s marches. You who coach your daughters’ soccer teams. Yes, you are trying, but I’m struck by how spectacularly so many of you continue to fail at listening, this most basic of human skills.
It’s not women, you see. And hey, it’s sure nice that you emasculated beta male feminist are coaching your daughters and parroting the bullshit gospel of feminism. Unless you listen to women in exactly the way Ms. Probolus wants you to listen, you must be named and shamed. It’s completely impossible that Ms. Probolus has nothing of interest to say to men and thus they ignore her. Or perhaps that her hectoring and male-bashing so turns off even the progressive beta male manjina-endowed caucus that they ignore her assuming its more of the same horseshit. These thoughts never occur to her.
But how are we men to be reeducated? Will there be death camps and cattle prods and chicks in hot leather jumpsuits and no underwear? Read on.
Fortunately, there are practical strategies to help men become both better listeners and more active listeners. First, to be a good listener, stop talking. You cannot listen to her story and be present for her if you’re too busy thinking about yourself or your next brilliant comment. Second, active listening means hearing the words women are saying and taking them at face value, even if those words contradict your prior assumptions or your own agenda. Third, being an active listener means asking questions.
Huh. Let ‘Puter see if he groks your ladywords:
1. STFU. Don’t think about anything other than the line of shit she’s about to attempt to cram down your throat.
2. STFU and obey women. Jettison your own beliefs and adopt hers unquestioningly. Don’t interrupt to point out how stupid her positions are.
3. After you’ve done 1 and 2, you may speak but only to ask questions approved in advance by Ms. Probolus.
That seems about right, doesn’t it? Man, is ‘Puter smart or what? What’s next, O Great Oracle of Feminist Doctrine?
Women do not speak with one voice. We don’t all want the same things, which is why you need to ask women what they want and then respect their opinions, even, and most especially, if it means ceding some of your own power in any given situation. Practicing feminist listening is something you can start right now. Look up from your paper or screen and ask the woman across from you, “How can I be a better listener?” Listen to her, and do what she says.
Alright. Apparently, the only approved question is, “What do you want?” And the only approved response is “Yes, dear. Right away.” Give up all your power because women say so. Put her in control of your thoughts, words, and deeds. It’s interesting that this noted feminist is creating a world for men that closely resembles the world women existed in back in the 1940s. Keep quiet, look pretty, her opinions are your opinions, treat her as God. ‘Puter wonders when Ms. Probolus is going to get around to advocate beating your man if he dares get uppity.
After presenting her perfect plan for ruining male-female interaction and destroying all heterosexual relationships for a generation, could there be anything left to accomplish for our fearless Comrade Probolus? O ye of little faith. You bet there is.
This ask may seem small, but listening must be the first step toward systemic change. Members of Congress should listen to the opinions of their female constituents and prioritize the legislation that they ask for. Organizations should listen to their female employees about what policies would be most helpful to support their personal and professional flourishing, and then take active steps to enact those policies.
Wow. This is mind-blowing, world-altering work right here! How could ‘Puter have been so simple? It’s so apparent to ‘Puter now that all animals are equal, but female animals are more equal than others! Congress should prioritize women’s wishes above all other matters before them. Why? Because Ms. Probolus says so. After all, women are more equal than men.
Corporations should ignore shareholders and profits, instead turning the workplace over to women to run according to their whims. Need a menstrual day off? Sure, no problem! How about 18 years of paid leave to raise your family? Sure! No problem! After all, women are more equal than men.
“There can’t be any problems left for Ms. Probolus to solve,” you think to yourself. You’d be wrong. Follow me down the rabbit hole into the diseased, fascistic mind of a dedicated feminist.
Social media should regulate online platforms to safeguard women against harassment and to ensure that their voices are heard. Our legal system must figure out how it can listen to women, particularly in cases of rape. And it needs to respond to women whose identities exist at the intersection, listening to the nuances of what it means to be injured because one is both a woman and black, a woman and queer. Listening will not solve inequality. But progress is impossible if men can’t hear women.
Men’s free speech? F*ck it. Stupid men just abuse it anyway. Let’s deplatform and cancel the bastards! We’re going to force people to pay attention to women online! Marketplaces and robust debates are for chumps! Men have two options. First, men can accept us feminists cramming our program down their subjugated throats (which is totally not mind-raping, you sexist hater!). Or second, men can be destroyed. See? We women are offering you men choice. You get to pick!
And rights of the accused? Fuck ‘em. Due process and the presumption of innocence are archaic concepts. Show trials with predetermined outcomes are where it’s at! China and Russia are models of efficiency! Can’t you see how their justice systems benefit women? We need to replicate those here, run solely by women, of course.
Did Ms. Probolus mention men will be required to accept any old thing the LGBTQI+ community wants to foist on them, no matter how delusional or harmful? She didn’t? Well, guess what, dickheads? Either you accept completely irrational, made up shit, including gender reassignment hormone therapy for 5 year olds or you’ll be liquidated. Erm, reeducated. Definitely reeducated. Forget the whole liquidated thing.
All you idiots have to do is listen – really listen – to Ms. Probolus and she will usher in a workers’ paradise!
Do you wonder what Ms. Probolus’ capper to her totally-not-insane-plan-for-world-domination-and-oppression-of-men is? Boy, ‘Puter sure does!
Identifying and vilifying hateful, sexist men is easy. It’s a lot harder to tell the men in our lives who support us and love us unconditionally that they, too, are part of the problem. I hope that they will listen, and I hope that they will change. If The New York Times can do it, perhaps its male readers can, too.
Yay! After Ms. Probolus and her feminist death squads liquidate reeducate all the male haters and losers, it’ll be easier to force the weak beta men to obey. It’s amazing what the threat of death reeducation can accomplish!
And women? Do women have any responsibility here? Newp. Not a one. Ms. Probolus assures us that it’s all men’s fault. Women bear no responsibility for any of their actions or beliefs.
Now listen up, Ms. Probolus. ‘Puter’s got a brief response to your well thought out, totally not ripped right out of Stalin’s handbook plan. Are you ready? I want to make sure you’re listening – really listening – to what I’m about to say.
You can take your hateful, totalitarian agenda and fuck right the fuck off, you un-American bitch.
* We tell Czar that Presidents Day is Czars Day since he hates constitutional republics and loves brutal dictatorships (and himself). It’s easier than listening to Czar rant for the entire weekend about burying America while pounding his shoe on the table.
** ‘Puter does not fully (or even partially) understand what an appropriate amount of vajjing-up would be for the NYT’s daily letters page. Is there a Vaj-o-meter which measures it? So many questions.
Ms. Probolus is a postdoctoral fellow at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in the Division of Medicine and Science. Ms. Probolus received her PhD from George Washington University and her undergrad degrees from Smith College. She was a Fulbright Scholar.
Ms. Probolus seems to check all ‘Puter’s mental boxes for “probably a screaming near-commie leftist.” PhD level academic? Check. Fulbright Scholar (too bad she couldn’t get the Rhodes Scholarship like Rachel Maddow and Pete Buttigieg)? Check. Undergrad degree from a hard-Left feminist college Smith? Check.
But perhaps Ms. Probolus isn’t a screaming, crybullying leftist. We should give her the benefit of the doubt. Let’s look a bit deeper into her background. What else has our intrepid culture warrior been up to?
She has served in a leadership capacity at the George Washington University as the Chair of Equity and Inclusion in American Studies Department’s inaugural Graduate Student Association and as an organizing member of Graduate Students United!
Oh. Ms. Probolus was the Chair***** of Equity and Inclusion in the grad students association. ‘Puter’s fairly certain that’s not a position one gets for being reasonable and rational on issues like race and gender. Or quotas for that matter. It’s pretty much the exact opposite of reasonable and rational.
And what’s that Graduate Students United!****** thing about? Oh. “SEIU Local 500.” It’s a union. Ms. Probolus unionized grad students. Definitely the kind of person who would think that merit should govern transactions, not connections, genitalia, misguided and dangerous political ideologies, or thuggery.
Maybe Ms. Probolus’ worldview isn’t hard Left. We should check. There’s still hope ‘Puter’s completely wrong about her being a proto-communist. Let’s look at what she says about herself.
Broadly, my work focuses on the history of education, race, gender, and political economy in the postwar era. As a social and politician historian, I privilege the voices and ideas of non-expert over expert actors.
Oh. ‘Puter’s not a bright man but he knows that “race, gender, and political economy” are code words for “closet Marxist.” ‘Puter’s also pretty sure someone who “privilege[s] the voices and ideas of non-expert over expert actors” is definitely a not-so-closeted Marxist.
It sure appears we’ve got enough evidence to place her firmly on the godless commie ideologue side of the ledger but just for the sake of being thorough, let’s check Ms. Probolus’ dissertation.
My dissertation, Separate and Unequal: Gifted and Talented Programs in Boston Public Schools, 1950–1980, studies how parents, educators, activists, and social scientists mobilized ideas about race, gender, and intelligence in the postwar era to separate students on the basis of “ability,” reinscribing segregation in the wake of Brown v. Board of Education.”
The project makes two key contributions to postwar U.S. history. First, I argue that gifted and talented programs both reflected and contributed to the decline of liberalism during the Cold War by reframing public education as an individual right as opposed to a social good. While other scholars have explored the role that battles over school integration played in the retreat from state services, less attention has been paid to how programs for gifted students fundamentally impacted the public school system and informed this larger decline. I reveal how a new, overwhelmingly white, urban middle class used merit to secure the best educational opportunities for their sons and daughters while foreclosing those same opportunities for students of color.
Um, godless commie ideologue status confirmed. Not merely confirmed but confirmed in carved stone tablets God gave to Moses on Mt. Sinai confirmed. Working class wypipo who believe America is a place which rewards hard work and merit are bigots. Meritocracy in classroom placements is end-running Brown v. Board of Education and reintroducing racial segregation. Believing a founding principle of this nation – namely, meritocracy – is racist and damned generation after generation of poor minority kids to crappy education and probably drug addiction and a life of crime as well, you hateful, oppressor wypipo bastards! Meritocracy’s going to “put y’all back in chains” according to Democrats’ favorite serial child and wife molester, Joe Biden. At least ‘Puter’s pretty sure Handsy Uncle Joe said that.
Man, ‘Puter’s gone way farther afield than he intended. ‘Puter figured he’d be well into Ms. Probolus’ letter to the NYT editors telling men to shut the f*ck up, sit the f*ck down, and obey our commie feminist betters (or else) by now.
Seems like a good time for a break before diving into Ms. Probolus’ letter in depth. This will give ‘Puter a chance to go get a second handle of rotgut scotch since this one’s nearly empty now.
It would also be a good time for you to go take a gnarly, bowl-coating, Presidents Day dump. Go ahead. ‘Puter’ll wait for you. And pray for you.
See you on the other side.
* OK, she’s probably not bad. Definitely wrong though. Like Paul Krugman level wrong.
** Ms. Probolus would probably want ‘Puter to refer to her as Doctor Probolus or perhaps Kimberly Probolus, PhD. Ms. Probolus can f*ck right off. Unless your degree starts with M and the next and final letter is D, you don’t get called doctor.***
*** ‘Puter will admit dentists with their DDS degrees can also be called doctor but ‘Puter knows most dentists aren’t that uptight about it unlike far too many PhD holders.****
**** Mrs. Joe Biden and media can go f*ck themselves with a barbed wire wrapped baseball bat soaked in salty lemon juice for insisting on calling her Doctor Jill Biden. The woman has an EdD which is basically a participation trophy for people who want the cachet of a doctoral degree without the effort. It’s the short-bus version of advanced degrees.
***** Not Chairwoman or Chairperson, just a literal piece of furniture because MUH JENDUR KONSTRUX!!1! or something. To be fair, based on ‘Puter’s life experience, Chair is an apt descriptor for people who run most of these far-Left causes. They’re not that bright and easily ignored in most areas of their lives. Referring to yourself as “Chair” is a cry for help.
****** The exclamation point lets the reader know that Graduate Students United! is super-serious and will not suffer oppression lying down! The reader will intuit members know chants and are willing to occupy the college president’s office so long as there’s no physical or career risk to themselves. Super. Serious. People.
Over the weekend, ‘Puter sat down and read the Sunday New York Times.* In the Sunday Review section, the editors wrote a love-letter to women who write letters to the editor titled “Women, Please Speak Out.”
‘Puter considered synopsizing the letter but decided his minions couldn’t fully understand ‘Puter’s larger point without getting a sense of the utter raft of steaming, po-mo, SJW horseshit the NYT editors have become. Let’s take a gander.
A year ago, prodded by a reader who wrote eloquently about how women were underrepresented on the letters page of The Times, we started the Women’s Project, aiming to correct that imbalance and better reflect the diversity in society. We committed ourselves to work toward a goal of gender parity and to report on our progress in February 2020.
Barf. Lazy writing written for lazy people who are unable to think beyond nonsensical tropes media force-feeds them. Read on, if you dare.
For the last year, we have tracked and entered into a spreadsheet the gender of every writer we’ve published on the daily letters page. As of today, the tally is 43 percent women, 57 percent men — numbers that have remained remarkably constant for several months. While we do not have exact data from previous years, we do know that there are now far more women on the page than in the past.
We have also done spot tallies of the much larger number of submissions. There the percentage (when a writer’s gender can be determined) is about 25 to 30 percent women, about the same as a year ago, before the project started.
Got it? The NYT editors decided the daily letters page needed to be vaginaed up, filling a gaping void so to speak. Naturally, the editors instituted a quota just like the communist sympathizers they are.** Penises need not apply. Make letters snatch-tastic again. Letters are cooter-iffic!
On we go, dear minions, voyaging ever-deeper into the fever swamps of “elite” media minds where normal predilections and preferences of the sexes are prima facie evidence of societal oppression of women.
Over all, though, we’re not satisfied yet. While there was a small uptick in letters from women right after we announced the project, we still sometimes find ourselves struggling to ensure that women’s voices are heard on a wide variety of topics.
At the project’s one-year mark, we’re reaffirming our commitment to working to reach gender parity. But what was reinforced by this project is that our letters pages are richer for this new collection of voices — and it compels us to broaden our efforts further, to ensure that we are publishing a range of letters from an even more diverse pool of writers going forward.
The NYT’s editors placed a daily burjina quota on the letters page but women didn’t respond! Women are too stupid to realize they’re oppressed by white, male bigots! How dare women not validate the NYT editors’ pet theory! Do women not realize that they’re obligated to resist Not-Our-President Orangemanbad by whining (two times, real hard) on the NYT’s daily letters page?***
The NYT’s policy of daily letter set asides for women is not only insulting to women, it’s self-destructive.
It’s insulting to women because it tells women they’re not good enough to get their letters published without super-woke media elites putting their thumbs on the scale. It’s the editors’ soft bigotry of low expectations for women writ large.
It’s self-destructive because it destroys the NYT’s (currently undeserved) reputation for being a top-quality news and opinion outlet, America’s alleged newspaper of record. It’s the editors admitting they’re dumbing down the quality of its daily letters page by selecting on the basis of genitalia rather than the quality of the submission.
If the NYT admits it lowers its allegedly high standards for submitted letters to publish to push its political agenda (the aggressive enbewbification of letters to the editor), has it also lowered its standards for reporters and reporting? Does the NYT’s political agenda bias its coverage of events to the point that it is no longer a reliable source of facts? Are readers supposed to assume that everything in the NYT is false because its reporters aren’t hired for competence but rather because they check some race, sex, or sexual preference box somewhere in some HR executive’s tiny little reptilian brain?
Trump hasn’t destroyed media as media are wont to claim. Trump’s simply pulled back the curtain to reveal the decades-long rot and decay media’s inflicted on itself.
* Shut up. It’s Mrs. P’s subscription, not mine. ‘Puter subscribes to the totally awesome Wall Street Journal like all good white male oppressors. Now get that cute ass back in the kitchen and make ‘Puter a sammich, Sugar Britches. ‘Puter likes to watch you walk away. While you’re at it, drop a few pounds, put on a shorter skirt, lose the bra, and put on a skin-tight sweater, Tits McGee.
** The New York Times has still not returned the Pulitzer it won for the work of Walter Duranty who history showed (and the NYT likely knew at the time) used his articles on the Soviet Union-occupied Ukraine to cover up Stalin’s starvation of millions of Ukrainians (aka, Holodomor). Thus, “communist sympathizers” is a well-deserved (and earned) moniker.
*** The NYT daily letters page is what you would get if you took the zanier, more conspiracy theory-er moments of Morning Joe and The View and wrote them down. Since Trump’s election it’s been a nonstop circle-jerk of crybullies who hate the 63 million Americans who voted for Trump over Meemaw Winebox.