Patterico's Pontifications

6/10/2015

Department Of Justice Issues Subpoena To Reason For Identity Of Angry Commenters

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:38 am



[guest post by Dana]

In a troubling move, the Department of Justice has issued a Grand Jury subpoena to Reason.com to identify anonymous commenters who made some very ugly remarks about a judge connected to the Silk Road case.

Ken White at Popehat provides a detailed legal analysis and look at the impact of this move by the Dept. of Justice:

The United States Department of Justice is using federal grand jury subpoenas to identify anonymous commenters engaged in typical internet bluster and hyperbole in connection with the Silk Road prosecution. DOJ is targeting Reason.com, a leading libertarian website whose clever writing is eclipsed only by the blowhard stupidity of its commenting peanut gallery.

Why is the government using its vast power to identify these obnoxious asshats, and not the other tens of thousands who plague the internet?

Because these twerps mouthed off about a judge.

Here are the comments in question left at Nick Gillespie’s post about the sentencing of Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht:

AgammamonI5.31.15 @ lO:47AMltt
Its judges like these that should be taken out back and shot.

AlanI5.31.15 @ 12:09PMltt
It’s judges like these that will be taken out back and shot.
FTFY.

croakerI6.1.15 @ 11:06AMltt
Why waste ammunition? Wood chippers get the message across clearly. Especially if you
feed them in feet first.

Cloudbusterl6.l.15 @ 2:40PMIIt
Why do it out back? Shoot them out front, on the steps of the courthouse.

Rhywunl5.3l.15 @ 11:35AMIIt
I hope there is a special place in hell reserved for that horrible woman.

AlanI5.31.15 @ 12:11PMIIt
There is.

Product PlacementI5.31.15 @ 1:22PMIIt
I’d prefer a hellish place on Earth be reserved for her as well.

croakerl6.l.15 @ 11:09AMIIt
Fuck that. I don’t want to oay for that cunt’s food, housing, and medical. Send her through
the wood chipper.

So, do these qualify as “true threats”? White says no:

True threat analysis always examines context. Here, the context strongly weighs in favor of hyperbole. The comments are on the Internet, a wretched hive of scum, villainy, and gaseous smack talk. The are on a political blog, about a judicial-political story; such stories are widely known to draw such bluster. They are specifically at Reason.com, a site with excellent content but cursed with a group of commenters who think such trash talk is amusing.

The “threats” do not specify who is going to use violence, or when. They do not offer a plan, other than juvenile mouth-breathing about “wood chippers” and revolutionary firing squads. They do not contain any indication that any of the mouthy commenters has the ability to carry out a threat. Nobody in the thread reacts to them as if they are serious. They are not directed to the judge by email or on a forum she is known to frequent.

Therefore, even the one that is closest to a threat — “It’s judges like these that will be taken out back and shot” isn’t a true threat. It lacks any of the factors that have led other courts to find that ill-wishes can be threats.

While the comments are not “true threats”, it is nonetheless concerning that federal prosecutors are willing to use their authority to investigate a few outraged anonymous commenters who foolishly made nasty comments about a judge. If it can happen to them, it can happen to any commenter who momentarily loses their sense of discretion and self-restraint.

As Virginia Postrel, founder of Reason, notes:

The real threats aren’t coming from the likes of Agammamon and croaker. They’re coming from civil servants in suits. Subpoenaing Reason’s website records, wasting its staff’s time and forcing it to pay legal fees in hopes of imposing even larger legal costs (and possibly even a plea bargain or two on the average Joes who dared to voice their dissident views in angry tones) sends an intimidating message: It’s dangerous not just to create something like Silk Road. It’s dangerous to defend it, and even more dangerous to attack those who would punish its creator. You may think you have free speech, but we’ll find a way to make you pay.

Now go to Popehat and read the whole thing.

–Dana

UPDATE BY PATTERICO: While I agree with Dana and Ken White that this is overreaching and troubling, I also think many of the comments at Reason are reprehensible. A comment like “Its judges like these that should be taken out back and shot” may not be illegal, but I have no desire to associate with people who make comments like that. I have already deleted one comment in this thread to that effect (by happyfeet), and I ask JD to keep an eye out for others and zap them when he sees them. Repeat offenders will be banned, and there’s no First Amendment violation in that.

262 Responses to “Department Of Justice Issues Subpoena To Reason For Identity Of Angry Commenters”

  1. Good morning.

    Dana (86e864)

  2. We can’t allow free expression of political outrage, now can we? Before too long the peons would think their thoughts and opinions should matter in the big scheme of things. Best if we stop that nonsense before it gets out of control. It will take just a few hearty examples to make the point…

    Czar Obama

    in_awe (7c859a)

  3. Jazz Shaw’s column on this at Hot Air is a steaming pile of asshattery, and his description of Popehat’s column in no way resembles the actual words published by Popehat.

    JD (ebe920)

  4. From: What They’re Saying.

    The statements made on this web site reflect the personal opinions of the author. They are not made in any official capacity, and do not represent the opinions of the author’s employer.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  5. “The comments are on the Internet, a wretched hive of scum, villainy, and gaseous smack talk.”

    This line has started my day with a smile… how true and how hilarious!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  6. UPDATE BY PATTERICO: While I agree with Dana and Ken White that this is overreaching and troubling, I also think many of the comments at Reason are reprehensible. A comment like “Its judges like these that should be taken out back and shot” may not be illegal, but I have no desire to associate with people who make comments like that. I have already deleted one comment in this thread to that effect (by happyfeet), and I ask JD to keep an eye out for others and zap them when he sees them. Repeat offenders will be banned, and there’s no First Amendment violation in that.

    Patterico (3cc0c1)

  7. that was mine one you deletered it!

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  8. A comment like “Its judges like these that should be taken out back and shot” may not be illegal,

    Given that just about all judges who hand down idiotic rulings are of the left, I personally believe they should be exiled to a place where their ideology runs rampant. They should be sent packing to the city of Detroit or a country like Argentina or Venezuela. Brilliant minds like theirs deserve no less.

    Mark (a11af2)

  9. Repeat offenders will be banned, and there’s no First Amendment violation in that.

    Of course there is no First Amendment violation. That pertains to the government not you on your blog. Or does it? Isn’t that just what this post is about? And aren’t you by not allowing certain comments in effect agreeing with the inJustice Dept.? So now the JD has made us all uncomfortable to express our First Amendment rights. Interesting.

    Just more Squirrels! to occupy us while the left plunders the Republic.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  10. 7.that was mine one you deletered it!

    There are no friends nor loyalty happyfeet, when the SS comes banging at the door. You’re on your own, kid.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  11. i’m steely-eyed and determined to vanquish all adversity Mr. Hoagie

    first they came for the pikachu and I was like oh hell no

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  12. Ein Volk! Ein Reich! Ein Fuhrer!

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  13. Be careful what you say. Lynch is reading our comments. She has a pen and a phone too.

    AZ Bob (34bb80)

  14. I see your theme. First they came for the straights, but I was Omni-sexual. Then they came for the whites, but I was trans racial. Then they came for the Protestants, but the Protestants had left me for leftists. Finally they came for the conservatives and all the other groups cheered and cheered. Death to America! Death to Christianity! Death to Males and females! Death to marriage!. Death o Race! DEATH TO INDIVIDUALISM and everything that makes a man unique before God!

    We must all submit or die.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  15. What did I do, Hoagie?

    JD (ebe920)

  16. If you want to find out who’s your master, find out who you can’t talk about.

    Yes some of these comments if done in some other context and repeated in other
    places could be considered worthy of investigation.

    But they weren’t yet they will be investigated at great expense and zero value
    in return.

    Unfortunately the people who can fix the Justice system are the people who are
    abusing it.

    jakee308 (49ccc6)

  17. I agree that some comments are irresponsible and more harmful in the long run and should be withheld, and one can self-police one’s own “virtual living room”.

    That said, DOJ investigations only if they do the same for equivalent comments on liberal sites about conservatives. I bet there’s a lot of hate out there on Ben Carson, Rubio, and others.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  18. Big L Libertarians include quite a few lunatic-ish folks. It’s why I am not a Big L Libertarian.

    Ron Paul has quite a few supporters who should probably on meds.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  19. Given that just about all judges who hand down idiotic rulings are of the left, I personally believe they should be exiled to a place where their ideology runs rampant.

    Exiled to exactly where they already are?

    Dave (in MA) (037445)

  20. As we say in South Philly, JD: You dint do notin, why?

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  21. JD = justice department

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  22. Yes some of these comments if done in some other context and repeated in other
    places could be considered worthy of investigation.

    17.I agree that some comments are irresponsible and more harmful in the long run and should be withheld, and one can self-police one’s own “virtual living room”.

    What do these sentences, one from jake308 and the other from MD in Philly both point out? They both recognize that what was written were “comments”, not threats. If we can see and understand the difference why can’t the Justice Dept.? Answer: because they don’t want to. They want to trample our speech and if they can’t by force they’ll do it by intimidation. Which seems to be working.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  23. Thank you happyfeet. As usual I miss the nuances.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  24. Had I the power to do so, I would establish by legislation that any action by the government could be challenged on the grounds that it was “Unsupported by any likely finding of wrongdoing, and gave the appearance of punishment by process.”; any office or department with such a finding against it would be required to pay reparations (specifically including, but not limited to, legal expenses), and the oppressed citizen could petition to have the government stooges in question publicly horsewhipped.

    C. S. P. Schofield (a196fd)

  25. BTW, they also say these comments “could be worthy of investigation” and self-policed. My God what has happened to America? A lousy comment needs policing and investigation. The Patriots have become the Torres. This is the land of what free? Who is still brave?

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  26. Here, Here Schofield. I guess you and I are worthy of investigation. Welcome!

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  27. BTW Mr. Schofield, it is “punishment by process”. The JD (thanks happyfeet) has unlimited resources and can sue and sue and sue or subpoena and subpoena and subpoena until Reason is put out of business. It’s the lawyers version of Kristallnacht.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  28. Mr. Cap’n Ed gently rebukes Jazz Shaw’s steaming pile of asshattery

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  29. a thought occurs to me, considering the research agencies use of trolls, and axelrod’s use of mobys to discredit opposition, how do we know these were just random comments,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  30. I’m on Ed Morrissey’s side, happyfeet. To me a threat is quite specific and the person making a threat must have a reasonable chance of carrying it out. If I were to say “I want to kill Kim Jong-un” (the ugly little pr!ck) it could be considered a threat. However, there is no reasonable chance of me getting into N. Korea, past his henchmen and carrying it out. Therefore, it becomes wishful thinking but not a threat. Too bad.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  31. One thing is that when the DOJ picks the most outrageous example of things that most of us wouldn’t say anyways, it is harder to get enough public against it
    and there are so many things to be outraged by with this DOJ.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  32. after Rosen, Risen, Sanford, Ferguson, F&F, it’s near beer,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  33. narciso (ee1f88) — 6/10/2015 @ 9:32 am

    Wonderful point. From what I understand, the left is willing to pay people to show up at rallies and sit-ins and sit at computers and to post disinformation and subterfuge.

    We are not as crafty or shrewd as those of this world.

    I mean, if they are willing to run guns as a setup, what would they not do??

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  34. http://t.co/lIdE5k6xRH

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  35. me too Mr. Hoagie it’s always kind of a red flag when you see people characterizing internet comments as “going after” or “attacking” like how Mr. Shaw does

    Further, there’s actually a valid reason for this. Taking any human life is evil, but when you go after an elected official, a cop or a judge, you are attacking the system of justice and the rule of law which keep us from falling into anarchy and oblivion. It’s a serious thing and law enforcement treats it as such.

    which is not to say that snowflakes aren’t precious

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  36. One thing I’ve learned with this administration MD in Philly, is they don’t need ” enough public” for anything. All they need is a court or a government agency to attack, 10 people to scream and voila! we have Christian businesses closed and SSM imposed. Then they’ll lie and say “in a recent poll, the pubic is 142% behind gay marriage”. Just like North Philly had a 105% turnout for Obama.

    WE are being smacked and inundated with lies and false flags and narratives every day. Wake up America.

    Bruce Jenner is not a girl!!! Bruce Jenner has the same genitals, chromosomes and DNA strands as any other MAN. He is just a pervert in a dress and makeup. Stop calling him her. You’re allowing them to NEWSPEAK you to serfdom.

    Saying an idiot judge should be shot is NOT the same as threatening to shoot him.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  37. Odd how the left can put out a movie depicting the assassination of President George W. Bush but the very idea of shooting one of their precious leftist judges throws them into panic. So the visual assassination of a President, no problem. But a hyperbole about a judge calls for investigation.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  38. Hoagie, I don’t think ‘the left’ is in a panic over the comments at Reason; I think leftists generally assume that anyone commenting at Reason is contemptible and stupid and not worth their time to think about. (I’m not speaking of *my* view of their commenters, just the view that I think my left-wing friends would have if all they know of Reason was a vague description of their politics).

    I think some bureaucrats are feeling threatened by these comments and are abusing their power in order to make themselves feel less threatened. That’s reprehensible, and wrong, and they should be shut down in their attempts to do it – but that does not indicate that ‘the left’ is panicking.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  39. Well, the good news is the DOJ haz an azzfull of affirmative action approved constitutional phuckwits to argue the government’s case.

    DNF (208255)

  40. you have heard of mobys, haven’t you, they use such tools, to ‘isolate, polarize, I don’t need to give the whole Alinsky shpiel do I:

    narciso (ee1f88)

  41. Taking any human life is evil,

    No it’s not. Again they begin their Newspeak with a premise that’s a lie, then expand upon it. Sometimes taking a human life s necessary for the well being and protection of other human lives. Murder is evil. They always try and confuse the issue when they can’t win on logic.

    But they continue:

    but when you go after an elected official, a cop or a judge, you are attacking the system of justice and the rule of law which keep us from falling into anarchy and oblivion.

    “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

    That’s Jefferson’s way of saying when the Newspeak and Bullcrap from the “elected official, cop or judge” goes against OUR GOD GIVEN RIGHTS it’s not “anarchy” it’s Revolution!

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  42. I think I made every comment I could make about this over at Popehat, but at the risk of repeating myself: The moonwaffles at Reason made those comments about the judge because she sentenced Silk Road, a drug dealer indisputably guilty, to a long term in prison. Ok? Now, I also object to the prison term. It’s too costly to the taxpayers. I prefer the way the Iranians and Indonesians dela with drug peddlers. But I am not going to say nasty things about the judge over it; she had to follow the law.

    nk (dbc370)

  43. aphrael, some bureaucrats should be feeling threatened by these comments since it’s the abuse of their power that has caused it. BTW, these nameless, faceless bureaucrats are ruining our families, jobs, businesses, finances, Republic and future daily. And we’re PAYING them to do it.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  44. It’s fairly well established in the law, though, that the lives of peace officers are more valuable than the lives of others. See for example California Penal Code Section 451.1(1)(2), where someone convicted of a felony incurs an additional 3-5 year sentence enhancement if a peace officer, firefighter, or other emergency personnel suffered great bodily injury as a result of the offense.

    The legislature adopts such policies, at the end of the day, because it believes such policies deter violence against peace officers – and because it believes that widespread violence against peace officers would make it impossible for the peace officers to do their jobs, which are critical to the security of the public.

    I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to say that widespread violence against judges would make it impossible for judges to do their jobs, which are critical to the security of the public – and so, for me, if it’s reasonable for a legislature to provide special protection to peace officers, it is also reasonable to provide special protection for judges.

    Now, that’s not to say that it’s ok for the DoJ to investigate people who are clearly just blowing off steam in the manner that they’re doing here; the crucial issue is that there’s no reasonable basis to believe these things are actual threats, and so any heightened protection for judges shouldn’t apply because that only kicks in once there’s a reasonable basis for believing there’s something to protect against.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  45. Hoagie – and yet threatening *lives* is an over the top reaction to that, IMO. People who serve the public should not have to do so under the cloud of a threat of death. The threat that the public will fire them if they don’t do their job? Sure, that’s fundamentally the same threat I’m under (that my employer will fire me if I don’t do my job). But death threats from random members of the public? They’re reprehensible, even if legal.

    I have some sympathy for the sense of threat the bureaucrats in question feel, for they should not be in a place where they have to feel it. At the same time, I reject outright their means of dealing with that sense of threat.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  46. she had to follow the law.

    Really? Like Eric Holder follows the law? Or like Hillary! follows the law? How about the way Obama follows the law? Or Justice Roberts? Or like a thousand other leftist “follow ” whatever law they like and ignore the rest? Yeah, tell me all about it, nk. Keep believing the Newspeak till you eat Soylent for supper.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  47. I meant that she could not, and did not, order him put through a woodchipper, Hoagie. 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  48. Okay aphreal, one more time. THERE WERE NO THREATS. You do know the difference between saying a person “should” be shot and actually shooting a person, right? If their skin is so thin or their guilt so thick that a person saying they “should” be shot scares the pee out of them then let them quit. I happen to partially agree with their decision but at this point the decision is irrelevant. What is relevant is that we have Freedom of Speech and that’s too bad for them.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  49. and yet threatening *lives* is an over the top reaction to that, IMO.

    nobody threatened nobody’s life

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  50. 44. …the crucial issue is that there’s no reasonable basis to believe these things are actual threats,

    At this point aphreal, I believe the People have more to fear from the judges and all these other “specially protected” public employees than they have from us. Hopefully that will change before the Brownshirts are established, not after.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  51. I’m pretty confident the subpoena is mere theater. Why?, you ask. Because I’m pretty confident the NSA knows all that the subpoena could reveal about those commenters and a lot more besides. Their IPs, their computer IDs, everything they have transmitted electronically, everything that’s on record about them electronically. If they were truly considered a threat we would have heard nothing about them, and they would be in an extraordinary rendition facility in Romania undergoing enhanced interrogation.

    Who agrees with me?

    nk (dbc370)

  52. Aphreal, in this administration if they were truly considered a threat they would have been hired. Now I’m going to Cheesecake Factory for lunch. See ya.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  53. Let’s say a guy who has used an alias on the net for a long period of time happens to say something like “I’m a gonna hunt you down just like Jay and Silent Bob, and give you the country beating you deserve you lying scum.” What would be his/her/its liability?

    Not that I know of anyone doing that in real life.

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  54. Didn’t the Supreme Court just rule on an idle threat like these? Stupid speech is still free speech.

    Corky Boyd (c979b9)

  55. Elonis. Popehat has a couple of nice writeups about it. Scroll down to older posts from this one that Dana linked. SCOTUS did not reach the First Amendment issue. Just that there had to be a scienter requirement (did you mean to scare the person or were you criminally reckless in caring or not caring whether you did). And they were as clear as mud on that too.

    nk (dbc370)

  56. that case involved a particular person with a particular personal connection if memory serves,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  57. California is being pummeled by hurricane Blanca this morning. (it’s just rain – but if some global warming toadie wasn’t to raise a holler, I’ll happily encourage them to)

    papertiger (c2d6da)

  58. Oh, yeah, the facts leave no reasonable doubt that Elonis meant to scare his ex-wife and his former co-workers. But bad jury instructions will almost always get a case reversed and remanded.

    nk (dbc370)

  59. You need the rain. As long as the Sequoias are going to be okay, thank God for small favors.

    nk (dbc370)

  60. Reason comment section is the reason why read their site. They commenters are a colorful but very articulate and fair minded. They were firmly on the side of Christian bakers who refused to make gay wedding cakes and the second amendment. Surprisingly, a lot of them scoff at amnesty and “open borders”.

    There a handful of them that indulge in a some violent anti cop rhetoric. But it’s just internet trolling.

    lee (c2f501)

  61. “Some are whigs, liberals, democrats, call them what you please. Others are tories, serviles, aristocrats, &c. The latter fear the people, and wish to transfer all power to the higher classes of society; the former consider the people as the safest depository of power in the last resort; they cherish them therefore, and wish to leave in them all the powers to the exercise of which they are competent.” – Jefferson’s comment in an 1825 letter to William Short.

    I dunno. Am I safe in quoting Jefferson on the internet these days?

    PPs43 (6fdef4)

  62. Hoagie, when I mentioned ”enough public”, I was talking about getting enough public to meaningfully oppose Obama.
    I agree that it is hypocritical and inappropriate for the DOJ to investigate this if they do not do like wise with movies about killing Bush, etc.
    I was trying to say that the commentators were making it easy by shooting their own foot a bit by going over board, and it is not something I want to spend time to defend, when there are worse evils and I have only so much indignation to toss around.

    But yeah, the DOJ is overreaching, unless they do the same to the left, which we know they don’t.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  63. Oh MD in Philly, my indignation like my hypocrisy is boundless. However, my patience wears thin waiting for the wife to get out to lunch. Or will it be dinner now?

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  64. PPs43 (6fdef4) — 6/10/25 @ 11:55 am

    The problem with quotes on the internet is that it’s hard to verify their authenticity. — Abraham Lincoln

    People will believe anything if you put a famous person’s name after it. — Winston Churchill

    nk (dbc370)

  65. Chilling effect. Pretty simple.

    Rodney King's Spirit (b31520)

  66. Well then, I’m really gonna stick my neck out.

    “There are two potential violators of man’s rights: the criminals and the government. The great achievement of the United States was to draw a distinction between these two — by forbidding to the second the legalized version of the activities of the first.” — Ayn Rand

    PPs43 (6fdef4)

  67. I hope there is a special place in hell reserved for that horrible woman.

    I don’t get it. What kind of threat is this? That the commenter hopes she rots in Hell? That is hardly a threat unless the commenter is God. In which case good luck with the subpoena.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  68. As for threats, if these are threats, what is THIS and why can Amazon continue to sell it?

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  69. Or this, still up on Youtube:

    “I would kill Dick Cheney if I could get away with it.”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=urwH3w4bo90

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  70. A comment like “Its judges like these that should be taken out back and shot” may not be illegal, but I have no desire to associate with people who make comments like that. I have already deleted one comment in this thread to that effect (by happyfeet), and I ask JD to keep an eye out for others and zap them when he sees them

    This is precisely why we need a First Amendment. To protect “reprehensible” speech.

    Like calling Bruce Jenner, Bruce Jenner. That sends the leftist progs off their nut. If they had it their way calling somebody by what is still legally their legal name, the one on their driver’s license, which reflects the fact the were born a biological male, remain fully a physical male from the waist down, and no amount of surgery will change the fact that they will remain a biological male already is “reprehensible,” and would be illegal as hate speech.

    Or, rather, as threatening speech. I can cite more examples than should exist in a country with a First Amendment of elected and unelected public officials attempting to silence critics by deliberately misrepresenting criticism of their job performance (some well founded, some not, but that should not matter) as “threats.” And people have been arrested as a result. Merely disagreeing with the PC crowd on campus makes the SJW’s feel “unsafe” and thanks to Title IX that’s the key to silencing people, since university’s can’t foster a “hostile” environment. As defined by the Orwellian totalitarian left. No, I’m neither kidding nor exaggerating.

    http://www.floppingaces.net/most-wanted/laura-kipniss-incredible-ordeal-and-the-beginning-of-the-end-of-pc/comment-page-1/

    …Earlier this year she wrote an essay entitled “Sexual Paranoia Strikes Academe” for the Chronicle of Higher Education

    …Their “sense of vulnerability” was “skyrocketing” as a result of the “melodramatic imagination’s obsession with helpless victims and powerful predators.” She warned that “the climate of sanctimony has grown too thick to penetrate,” with any dissenter labeled “antifeminist, or worse, a sex criminal.”

    …Predictably, her words prompted a campus backlash, with mattress-carrying protesters demanding that the university immediately and officially condemn Kipnis’s essay. They used adjectives such as “terrifying” to describe the traumatic effect of her words. Kipnis shrugged off the protests — after all, when you’re a feminist professor writing on pornography, you’re used to a bit of negative public attention. But she couldn’t shrug off what happened next. Two students filed Title IX complaints against her, claiming that she’d violated federal law with her essay and a subsequent tweet.

    …It turned out there were two complainants, one who filed “on behalf of the university community,” claiming that Kipnis’s essay would have a “chilling effect” on students’ reports of sexual misconduct. The other student claimed that mentioning her involvement in a lawsuit (not by name) was “retaliatory and created a hostile environment.”

    So while I agree with our illustrious host that he doesn’t have to allow “reprehensible speech,” I still have to defend the right of the drunk teenaged libertarians to anonymously make those comments on sites that allow it against the stalinist thought police at the DoJ.

    Precisely because if they get away with this, then they’ll expand to definition of threats to include any speech they wish to suppress. The ultimate goal of any effort to ban speech, whether it’s as “hate,” as “threats,” or even as “pornography,” is to expand the definition to include political speech.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  71. Hoagie at #48 and Happyfeet at #49, I direct you to my comment at #44.

    There were no actual threats.

    And at the same time, it doesn’t take an actual threat for someone to feel threatened, and I can empathize with what it’s like to feel threatened, and understand how behavior is driven by that feeling, even without believing that an actual threat was placed.

    Furthermore, even though it’s not an actual threat, the kind of remarks in question are rude, counterproductive, and reprehensible.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  72. Steve57, I consider it a matter of simple *politeness* to refer to a person by the name they wish to be referred to by. There are considerations with will overcome my preference for politeness – but in the case of Caitlynn Jenner, none of those conditions apply.

    I do not consider it hate speech to refer to her as Bruce, nor do I think it should be illegal to do so.

    But I do consider it to be unjustifiably rude.

    Your mileage may vary.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  73. yes yes i saw that after Mr. Hoagie requoted that part you are correct

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  74. I join our host in his distaste for those who even seem to be supporting the notion of using violence against judges. (Or prosecutors. Or defense attorneys. Or anyone.)

    Thankfully, this is actually a fairly short list, and one of its four members wasn’t likely even deliberately targeted because of being a federal judge.

    I have very tangential connections to two of the judges on it: I served as a law clerk for a judge on the “old Fifth Circuit” when Judge Vance was a member, and mourned his passing. I was interviewing for a clerkship job with the late and deservedly famous Judge Irving Goldberg (one of the Fifth Circuit’s “Unlikely Heroes”) at the moment Judge Wood was assassinated, and the very calm Dallas federal court building I’d entered that morning (in an era before even metal detectors) was crawling with shotgun-toting federal agents when I left.

    I can’t speak for other states, but in Texas, judges, both state and federal, are to my personal knowledge very likely to be packing, whether on or off the bench. There are many softer targets.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  75. Distaste aside, I also think the federal investigation is unwarranted, and I agree that the First Amendment is designed to protect a very great deal of speech which I find distasteful and purposeless from governmental suppression.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  76. Moby Grape should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  77. When I complained about my dinner last night, my wife asked who’d named me judge and jury and it had a decidedly chilling effect on my marital relations.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  78. not unlike failmerica’s abysmal popo the judgepeople should not take the respect they’ve been historically accorded for granted

    but so many of them do

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  79. 72. I do not consider it hate speech to refer to her as Bruce, nor do I think it should be illegal to do so.

    aphrael (69b4f7) — 6/10/2015 @ 2:07 pm

    Bruce Jenner is not a “her.”

    And I consider it unjustifiably totalitarian to insist people say and believe things that are objectively not true.

    http://www.stalkingcat.net/

    Stalking Cat – Part Man, Part Animal

    Despite his delusions and no matter how much he modified his body, Dennis Avner was never “part animal.” It was probably when he had a moment of clarity about that reality that he killed himself.

    That the latest version of the DSM no longer classifies Gender Identity Disorder (indeed, no longer calls it a disorder) along with other types of Body Dismorhpic Disorders is a purely political decision on the part of the APA, as a careful reading of their reasons for doing so reveals.

    So, no. If next week Bruce Jenner decides he is a pony and wants me to call him Trigger I’m not playing along with that delusion.

    But you do illustrate a valuable point, aphrael. The fact is this “transgender” madness is being driven by progressive leftists who are pushing an agenda to reclassify objectively truthful observations of reality as “rude,” “hateful,” “sexist,” etc.

    I will not play along with these delusions, thank you very much.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  80. Hey, a 65 year old guy wants to put on lipstick and make-up, wear a dress and high-heels, I say go for it buddy, God bless…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  81. So, I’m guessing we’re not allowed to venture into the realm of “rusty chainsaws”, or “pineapple wrapped in barbed wire – sideways”? Dang, that’s a blow to some of the uber-frustrated amongst us….

    At the very least, can we wish the Prog-tarded idiots “out into the cornfield”? Anybody who’s seen that Twilight Zone episode featuring little Billy Mumy will get the reference.

    A_Nonny_Mouse (ef10d8)

  82. Steve57: you are free to do what you want. And I am free to consider it insensitive and rude. :)

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  83. caitlyn bless her heart she’s kind of a last week thing

    she had a good run

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  84. 18. Big L Libertarians include quite a few lunatic-ish folks. It’s why I am not a Big L Libertarian.

    Ron Paul has quite a few supporters who should probably on meds.

    Mike K (90dfdc) — 6/10/2015 @ 8:31 am

    That’s partly why I’m a conservative with libertarian leanings and not a Big L Libertarian. But also because being a Bit L Libertarian requires a lot of dishonesty and incoherence. This Silk Road case is a case in point. Ross Ulbricht wrote a deeply dishonest letter to the judge, and Big L Libertarian’s are writing deeply dishonest commentary about that letter and his sentence. This Bloomberg article is typical of the genre.

    http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-06-09/reason-magazine-subpoena-stomps-on-free-speech

    First it quotes from Ulbricht’s letter:

    Silk Road was supposed to be about giving people the freedom to make their own choices, to pursue their own happiness, however they individually saw fit. What it turned into was, in part, a convenient way for people to satisfy their drug addictions. I do not and never have advocated the abuse of drugs. I learned from Silk Road that when you give people freedom, you don’t know what they’ll do with it. While I still don’t think people should be denied the right to make this decision for themselves, I never sought to create a site that would provide another avenue for people to feed their addictions. Had I been more mature, or more patient, or even more worldly then, I would have done things differently.

    If anyone followed the reporting on the trial, Ulbricht knew exactly what he was doing and didn’t care. He wasn’t naive, or immature, or impatient. The evidence overwhelmingly shows he was in it for the money and he was prepared to contract murder if that was what was necessary to protect his empire. He lied to everyone around him (except for two people, I believe). His entire defense was to try and lie his way out of it. He even tried to pin the whole criminal enterprise on an innocent third party. And when he was convicted, he attempted to lie his way to a more lenient sentence.

    Libertarians have swallowed, or pretended to swallow, his lies hook, line and sinker. Virginia Postrel’s article continues with this commentary.

    The letter depicts Silk Road as an attempt to bring libertarian ideals into the real world — a virtual version of the seasteading schemes for new countries, hopelessly naive, perhaps, but certainly not evil in its intentions.

    Judge Forrest handed down a sentence even more draconian than prosecutors had sought and made a point of condemning Ulbricht’s political views. “In the world you created over time, democracy didn’t exist,” she said. “Silk Road’s birth and presence asserted that its…creator was better than the laws of this country. This is deeply troubling, terribly misguided, and very dangerous.”

    Whatever you think of Ulbricht or Silk Road, you can see why libertarians might be upset. A federal judge has just made the belief that it’s good for people to have “the freedom to make their own choices, to pursue their own happiness, however they individually saw fit” part of her justification for the most punitive sentence short of the death penalty. Her rationale offends libertarians on two grounds: It punishes political views and it punishes their particular political views.

    None of this is true. All of this cynically misrepresents what the judge’s sentencing decision was based upon. And this is typical. Joe Mullen at Arstechnica has extensively reported on the case, and he offers insightful commentary on this Big L Libertarian phenomenon.

    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/05/silk-road-doc-unintentionally-shows-whats-wrong-with-the-free-ross-crowd/

    Silk Road film unintentionally shows what’s wrong with the “Free Ross” crowd
    Innocent man or an activist for privacy and “harm reduction?” They’ll take both.

    …The government’s actions and tactics, especially an unproven but suspected hack of the Silk Road server, are absolutely fair game for debate. But the idea that Ulbricht wasn’t the “Dread Pirate Roberts” (DPR) who ran the site is hard to take seriously at this point.

    A jury convicted Ulbricht in February on drug trafficking and other charges. That verdict, reached after three hours of deliberation, came not because Ulbricht wasn’t allowed to make his case—a nonsensical trope still touted by his lawyer, family, and core supporters—but because his seized computer was literally full of Silk Road business records, chat logs with top SR admins, and a personal journal describing how he built the site.

    The film doesn’t mount a convincing argument for anything, but by toeing the “Free Ross” party line so dogmatically, Deep Web is unintentionally revealing. It’s a neat encapsulation of what some of Silk Road’s most fervent fans believe about the site, about Ulbricht, and about themselves.

    …But exploring the Silk Road’s “culture” falls quickly to the wayside as the film becomes a platform for Ulbricht’s parents. Their view was (and is) that Ulbricht was “tried and convicted in the media.” In their view, nothing has been proven.

    …Is it asking too much to think that Winter, with his extraordinary access, could have asked the Ulbrichts one hard question? Such as: what did Ross Ulbricht tell you he was doing from 2011 to 2013? There’s no evidence that Ulbricht ever had a normal job or paycheck while he was running Silk Road, traveling the world, and then settling in San Francisco.

    …The movie rightly mentions that the government has never properly described how it gained access to the Silk Road server; it’s a serious issue that raises real concerns about whether the FBI overreached during the investigation. But the movie skips over the fact that Ulbricht and his lawyer essentially turned down a judge’s repeated offers to challenge that evidence. To do that, Ulbricht would have had to admit to having a “privacy interest” in that server. It’s a telling omission.

    …Deep Web falls into the same intellectual paradox as hard-core Ulbricht supporters—and yes, they do exist. On the one hand, they maintain that Ulbricht’s guilt has never been proven. On the other hand, they want credit for Silk Road being the boldest form of activism against an overreaching drug war and the erosion of personal privacy.

    The Big L Libertarians have to deny that the evidence against Ulbricht was overwhelming. They deny it even exists. They have to lie about how Ulbricht wasn’t allowed to make his case. He had none. His defense rapidly devolved into a bad joke, but that was no one’s fault but his own. His defense was that Ulbricht was not the “Dread Pirate Roberts” (DPR) running Silk Road. The point about challenging the evidence the government found on the server in Iceland is telling. The judge practically begged him to do so, even going so far to point out the fact that he had to assert a privacy interest to do so could not be used against him at trial. But to assert such a privacy interest would have been to admit he was in fact the DPR as the government accused him of being.

    Then there’s the fact that Big L Libertarians simultaneously believe the government framed an innocent man, and that Ulbricht is a hero striking a blow for freedom by running a website for the purpose of allowing people to anonymously buy and sell drugs.

    Moreover the judge did not enhance Ulbricht’s sentence in order to criminalize his political views, which align with Postrel’s views. She gave him the harshest possible sentence because the unremorsefull Ulbricht ran a massive criminal enterprise that ended up killing people, as many relatives of those who OD’d or committed suicide testified. She shredded ULbricht’s continued dishonesty and refusal to take responsibility before imposing sentence. If Libertarianism figured in at all, it was only that until the end Ulbricht tried to cloak whet he knew to be criminal activity as political activism.

    Postrel is either the most gullible person on Earth if she buys it, or as dishonest as Ulbricht and misrepresenting the facts. I choose the latter, as she knows she can get away with it. The drunk teenaged boys commenting at reason are here Big L Libertarian base, and they aren’t interested in the facts.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  85. Joe Mullen at ars technica did outstanding reporting on the Ross Ulbricht/Silk Road case. Here’s the entire series of reports.

    http://arstechnica.com/series/the-silk-road-trial/

    Read through it if you’re interested (it is interesting). You’ll see how Ross Ulbricht and his supporters, including now Virginia Postrel, are twisting, misrepresenting, or flag ignoring the facts to both proclaim Ulbricht’s innocence of the charges and praise his heroic blow for freedom for doing exactly what he was charged with.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  86. 83. Steve57: you are free to do what you want. And I am free to consider it insensitive and rude. :)
    aphrael (69b4f7) — 6/10/2015 @ 3:31 pm

    Of course. And I am free to consider your attempt to paint my resistance to substituting progressive leftist ideology for objective reality as rude to be oppressive and Orwellian.

    It is rude to let the facts get in the way of the progressive leftist narrative these days. I intend to rudely stick to the facts.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  87. 76. Moby Grape should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

    Their first, self-titled album is great!

    Jack Klompus (ff4c13)

  88. Agreed, Jack!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  89. . . . you are free to do what you want. . . but not for long.

    PPs43 (6fdef4)

  90. Silk Road chose to do what he wanted unconstrained by law; the judge chose to do what she wanted within the constraints of the law. Sounds pretty Libertarian, philosophically, to me. I really don’t see the controversy. Does Libertarianism guarantee “and they all lived happily ever after”?

    nk (dbc370)

  91. We have a large Libertarian community in Chicago’s South Side. Vehemently opposed to the War on Drugs. Over the weekend, about 35 of them demonstrated that opposition by placing themselves in front of bullets. Five with fatal consequences. Freedom!

    nk (dbc370)

  92. Is not point if Mr. Silky is very bad man. DOJ subpoenas very very bad.

    happyfeet (a16d51)

  93. Your government engaged in a propaganda campaign that took many people in, including me, that Ross Ulbricht was a murderer, turning them and myself against him, and then did a bait and switch, sentencing him to life, not for engaging in murder, but in voluntary transactions, all of which would have been legal at America’s founding and for some time after.

    This is exactly what I was describing @85. There was no bait and switch. If you believed that Ross Ulbricht was a murderer, or was even accused of murder, then you haven’t been following the case, were taken in by his apologists misrepresentations of the facts, or alternatively like Postrel are misrepresenting the facts.

    Which is why I posted the link to the ars tecnica reporting on the case.

    Just to illustrate Postrel’s dishonesty, here again is what she claims the judge said in order to falsely accuse the judge of criminalizing libertarian political views.

    “In the world you created over time, democracy didn’t exist,” she said. “Silk Road’s birth and presence asserted that its…creator was better than the laws of this country. This is deeply troubling, terribly misguided, and very dangerous.”

    Here’s what the judge actually said.

    “This democracy we set up, it did not exist on the Silk Road,” she said. “You were captain of the ship. It wasn’t a world of ‘freedom’—it was a place with a lot of rules. It was a world of your laws.”

    Ulbricht decided what was bought and sold on Silk Road. When a staffer pointed out cyanide was being sold, Ulbricht as DPR pointed out it was a potent substance that could be used for murder or suicide—and then allowed the sale.

    “Within six minutes you made that decision,” Forrest noted.

    The judge was pointing out that Ulbricht was not the libertarian activist trying to empower people that he attempted to portray himself as. The “culture” he pretended that existed on SR did not exist.

    He was in fact power hungry and authoritarian. His own chat logs, journals, etc., exposted him.

    Ulbricht had been betrayed by his own words, and over the next several minutes, Forrest proceeded to read the most damning passages from his own logs and journals. (“It’s still not clear to me why you kept a journal,” she noted, an aside that apparently produced laughter in the overflow room.)

    So, yeah, maybe you’ve been fooled by bait-and-switch, alright, Christoph Dollis. But not by the government.

    The reasons the murder for hire con job that DPR fell for came up are two. One, to establish the fact that he had a guilty mind. And two, Ulbricht’s entire defense was “I was framed,” and the only witnesses he called were character witnesses (and one PI who had nothing substantive to say) testifying Ross Ulbricht was a good guy who couldn’t possibly have done what he was accused of doing. In combination with overwhelming evidence that Ross Ulbricht and DPR were one and the same, the government offered mountains of evidence that he lied to everyone around him (chat logs/emails to his mentor that other people he had told about SR “thought” he had sold the site when those same chat logs/emails/journals make it clear he had done no such thing were damning) they offered the murder for hire chats and bitcoin transfers in payment for those “hits” as evidence he wasn’t who he presented himself as to his family, friends and associates.

    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2015/02/the-hitman-scam-dread-pirate-roberts-bizarre-murder-for-hire-attempts/

    …Between the initial “hits” and the “loan,” Dread Pirate Roberts paid redandwhite US$1.15 million in bitcoin. The payments for the fake hits came from Ulbricht’s own bitcoin wallet, one more piece of damning evidence that his defense lawyers couldn’t explain away to the jury.

    We’ve published the “murder chats,” in full, below, apart from some addresses of alleged Silk Road buyers. Since there are no bodies, the question arises: exactly what are we reading?

    It all seems to have been an elaborate ruse, in which a scam artist (or artists) operating under multiple personas made off with $1 million from the world’s most successful online drug dealer, securing more cash in the end than FriendlyChemist had even hoped for at the beginning.

    …During closing arguments at Ulbricht’s, prosecutor Serrin Turner said that Ulbricht “may have fallen for a big con job,” but said that only goes to show he wasn’t a “criminal super-genius” but rather a criminal who made mistakes—and was willing, eager even, to use violence to protect what he’d built.

    “For him, it was trivial,” said Turner. “The click of a mouse, send $500,000, half a million dollars’ worth of bitcoins, wait for the picture of a dead body. Thank goodness it does not look like any murders occurred. Thank goodness that this man’s power trip was stopped before he managed to connect with a true hitman through his criminal website.”

    Is that clear? DPR thinks he’s communicating with a hitman, contracts for hits, and then Ross Ulbricht paid those same people. It simply was another piece of the puzzle to show Ross Ulbricht was DPR and knew he was engaged in a criminal enterprise, which blew his entire “I was framed, I’m not DPR” and “Ross Ulbricht is a nice, peaceful guy, committed to non-violence, and couldn’t have done these things” defenses out of the water.

    If you were convinced that Ross Ubricht was a murderer, or even accused of murder, then you are easily fooled. Which is another problem I have with Big L Libertarians, and it happens to be the same problem I have with Big L Leftists. When forced to choose between facts and your own loony ideological narrative, you’ll deny the facts and go with the loony narrative every time.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  94. Not that I think any of this speech should be illegal. Not Ulbricht’s dishonest defense (I’ve never heard of a defendant being tried for perjury for proclaiming his innocence after he was convicted), not Postrel’s article, and not the lunatic comments at reason.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  95. I was an acquaintance of Skip Spence when he was living in a halfway house in San Jose in the early-80’s. When his old bandmates needed him for a reunion concert, they’d drop by, pick him up, dope him up, and put him on stage for the show. They, too, were an unremorseful lot.

    ThOR (b81f2a)

  96. Didn’t the Supreme Court just rule on an idle threat like these? Stupid speech is still free speech.

    And the appellate courts will strike down any prosecution of this “crime.” But not before the IRS and other agencies know who their enemies are.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  97. Steve57, #80

    I will not play along with these delusions, thank you very much.

    Neither will I. Newspeak bullcrap is still bullcrap. Bruce is a male, get used to it !

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  98. I can think of a Parking Enforcement Officer that I’d like renditioned to that special hell where she must follow every rule, and none of her rules matter in the least.
    There are many that say that this is a fate worse than death, so “am I not merciful?” and yes I am so I say release her on OR and give her 3 years probation.
    Please try to be a nice person from here on. thank you
    See? No wood chipper. Plus like nk said, she was only doing her job.
    Wood chipper? Over the top. Renditioned to hell on earth? On the bubble.
    Wondering if maybe she’ll someday die and get eaten by her 18 cats? Caring?
    I think so. Its not like the cats know how to open cans or anything.

    steveg (fed1c9)

  99. poor kitties

    happyfeet (831175)

  100. There is no shortage of people who believe tyrants and their thugs, toadies, sycophants, and enablers be respected and treated well.

    ErisGuy (76f8a7)

  101. I have some sympathy for the sense of threat the bureaucrats in question feel, for they should not be in a place where they have to feel it.

    So, aphrael. You think the playwright who did the Bush assassination play should be arrested ?

    Glad we agree.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  102. Wondering if maybe she’ll someday die and get eaten by her 18 cats? Caring?
    I think so. Its not like the cats know how to open cans or anything.

    like Marie Provost, you mean?

    redc1c4 (dab236)

  103. Dat hungry little dachshund!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  104. She was a winner… who became the doggie’s dinner

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  105. Mike K: I think that (108) is an odd conclusion to draw from what I have said – I have sympathy with the bureaucrats’ fear *and* think that there is no true threat *and* think that the use of the subpoena in this case is misused, so *therefore* I must support arresting someone who wrote a play which may have caused former President Bush fear in the same way that the not-true-threats at issue here caused bureaucrats fear?

    I think it would be fair to conclude that I have some sympathy for the fear former President Bush and his family must have felt. I don’t see how that per se extends to supporting the arrest of the playwright.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  106. And aren’t you by not allowing certain comments in effect agreeing with the inJustice Dept.?

    No.

    So now the JD has made us all uncomfortable to express our First Amendment rights.

    No.

    Interesting.

    Not really, since it’s not true.

    Patterico (3cc0c1)

  107. If some of the comments at Reason are reprehensible, the actions of the DOJ are beyond the pale…but just what you’d expect from Progressives–totalitarianism and thugs.

    pst314 (ae6bd1)

  108. Even if the Justice Department investigation results in no criminal or civil action against the commenters, their identifying information could be made public at some point. Remember the Proposition 8 donor list that revealed Brendon Eich opposed gay marriage? Similarly, these names could be revealed by a news organization, or a FOIA, or a leak. The commenters could be suitably “punished” by members of the public who target the commenters’ jobs, businesses or families, while the government can claim it has clean hands.

    DRJ (e80d46)

  109. I think it’s a grand jury subpoena so it could only be by a leak, and the leak would be a serious crime. That’s how they got Hoffa.

    nk (dbc370)

  110. If there was an indictment, or even pnly an arrest, it would be a public record regardless of a conviction or acquittal.

    nk (dbc370)

  111. I hope when I get outed as a Parking Enforcement “hater” that everyone remembers that there is no specific PEO listed and furthermore when data mining my records and then nailing her first and last name, badge number and all that? I really paid no attention to those details… you are the one who outed her, not me.
    I may wish she meanders through purgatory for the rest of her days, but then again she might be my dinner guest in heaven… which will be awkward with all those marks from electric clamps still on her renditioned parts and then over here is John Yoo who gave the President power to do so.
    Yea John Yoo

    steveg (fed1c9)

  112. Marie Harf noted that Abraham Lincoln once said that it is like totally hard because like the problem with quotes on the internet is that it’s like totally hard to like verify their authenticity.
    Which is why you should always trust content only from Team Obama

    steveg (fed1c9)

  113. #90
    Because I am a broken record, “you can do what you like. you just can’t do it here” covers about 98% of the law

    steveg (fed1c9)

  114. nk,

    Even prosecutors have been known to voluntarily release grand jury transcripts, if they think it’s appropriate. The laws are getting more complex, not less, and information get released when someone with access is motivated enough.

    DRJ (e80d46)

  115. In a troubling move, the Department of Justice has issued a Grand Jury subpoena to Reason.com

    I bet the idiots behind that action are philosophically/ideologically the same ones who, for example, will rationalize and excuse away the behavior of the Nidal Hasans of America until, of course, it’s too late. If so, then ponder just how ironic and contemptible that is.

    Whenever a really stupid idea, policy or program is being proposed or initiated, invariably — invariably — it involves people of the left, people who dominate many of the hallways and byways of Washington DC and throughout America in the 21st century.

    Mark (a11af2)

  116. I think it’s a grand jury subpoena so it could only be by a leak, and the leak would be a serious crime. That’s how they got Hoffa.

    Dang it, nk… I’d read they smacked him with a shovel and buried him under a half ton of concrete.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  117. 111. I think it’s a grand jury subpoena so it could only be by a leak, and the leak would be a serious crime. That’s how they got Hoffa.

    nk (dbc370) — 6/10/2015 @ 7:40 pm

    Just one of many serious crimes the DoJ, indeed the entire executive branch under President Tiger Beat, continues to commit in plain sight.

    We wouldn’t know a thing about Denny Hastert’s past, for instance, unless anonymous DoJ sources were leaking to the LHMFM.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  118. That was the coup de grace, the lead-up was prison. And I read that Santo Traficante chopped him into chum and fed him to the sharks from the stern of his fishing boat.

    nk (dbc370)

  119. Ed Whelan:

    [I]f the comments on the Reason website are the entirety of the alleged threat, then I agree with you that the subpoena is abusive. But consider another possibility: What if real but anonymous threats have been made against the judge (perhaps, for example, in letters mailed to her residence or chambers) and the website comments bear a striking similarity to the real threats? Then the subpoena might well be a reasonable part of a criminal investigation.

    On a lighter note, I was struck by the infelicitous phrasing in the letter accompanying the subpoena: “Please be advised that the accompanying grand jury subpoena has been issued in connection with an official criminal investigation of a suspected felony being conducted by a federal grand jury.”

    Dana (86e864)

  120. Let me think of something clever to say. Hmm. Nevermind.

    I have always enjoyed engaging on the internet. I have done it for a long, long time. In my mind, it is the greatest expression of First Amendment rights ever created. I casted around on other sites before settling on Patterico, because the people who post here are generally smart and entertaining.

    Personally, I always second guess every post I make here. Too often, I look back and think I probably should not have written a post. I know there are people who can destroy my life if they take offense. I know what they have done to Patterico.

    That doesn’t mean I won’t make comments. It does mean that our government and our fellow citizens, though, in a free republic have decided that some ideas are better than others and their better ideas should not be countered.

    Prior restraint is a healthy beast. I have received the message.

    Ag80 (eb6ffa)

  121. Forget true threats, all but one of those comments can’t be interpreted as threats of any kind. They’re advocacy, which is absolutely protected unless it crosses the line into incitement. “Somebody ought to kill that guy” is not a threat to do it oneself. Even the one iffy comment, the second one listed, reads more as a prediction than a threat. The commenter is not saying he’s going to do it, but that he’s confident it will happen one day, when the wheel of karma turns. It’s exactly the same as “come the revolution, that guy will be the first against the wall”, which is not a threat of any kind unless you’re actually leading a revolution that’s on the verge of succeeding.

    Harold Turner was only convicted, and his conviction was only upheld, because the people whose deaths he was advocating were judges, and the case was decided by other judges; I seriously wonder how such a case can possibly be tried, since all judges ought really to recuse themselves from it, and yet who else is to conduct the trial?

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  122. Now go to Popehat and read the whole thing.

    Sorry, no. Stopped reading Popehat when they censored my (polite, REASONED) comments about their support for gay marriage. Seems their support for free speech is limited to things they accept as legitimate opposition. Their site, they can do as they wish. And I can respond with my unwillingness to associate with censors.

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  123. Given that just about all judges who hand down idiotic rulings are of the left

    I seriously dispute that conclusion. There are plenty of right-wing judges who have also handed down idiotic rulings from time to time. Even wonderful judges seem to have off days, or issues on which they can’t think straight.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  124. UPDATE BY PATTERICO: While I agree with Dana and Ken White that this is overreaching and troubling, I also think many of the comments at Reason are reprehensible. A comment like “Its judges like these that should be taken out back and shot” may not be illegal, but I have no desire to associate with people who make comments like that. I have already deleted one comment in this thread to that effect (by happyfeet), and I ask JD to keep an eye out for others and zap them when he sees them. Repeat offenders will be banned, and there’s no First Amendment violation in that.

    Your call. But I personally feel it’s a reasonable response for at least some judicial behavior. AND some political behavior in general, particularly a lot of recent actions. TALKING about doing that. Shifting it to active behavior, that’s where the line gets crossed at this point.

    It would be one thing if they did not — arguably reasonably — feel it is treason. Because that is an act for which being taken out and shot IS a legitimate — in the legal sense of the word — response.

    It’s one thing to say that about some random action — “Ray Rice should be taken out and shot for slapping his wife.”

    It’s an another one entirely for saying it about someone attempting to SERIOUSLY violate the civil rights of a US Citizen — even a judge — which I suspect is very much the position of the individuals involved — that he is violating the rights of the defendant and knows he is doing so, and is more interested in “order” than justice or, even more importantly, The Law.

    As Barry Goldwater said, “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice.

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  125. If I were to say “I want to kill Kim Jong-un” (the ugly little pr!ck) it could be considered a threat.

    I disagree. I’m sure you want to do lots of things that would be wrong, but you don’t do them. Therefore saying you want to kill someone is no different from saying that you would love to sleep with some other person; it’s a wish, not a statement of intent to do anything about it. Unless you are Kim Jong Un, who probably does do everything he wants, since he probably has no conscience, and certainly has nobody who will prevent him.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  126. Given that just about all judges who hand down idiotic rulings are of the left

    I seriously dispute that conclusion. There are plenty of right-wing judges who have also handed down idiotic rulings from time to time. Even wonderful judges seem to have off days, or issues on which they can’t think straight.

    While I concur that there are some right-leaning judges who hand down some bad and/or stupid decisions, the vast array of egregiously bad ones seem to very much come from the left. Not all of them but I’d lay odds if you started out listing bad right-leaning decisions, it would be easy to match with an average of >1 left leaning decisions**

    ========
    ** The problem of course is who gets to decide the equivalence value… 😀

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  127. Odd how the left can put out a movie depicting the assassination of President George W. Bush

    1. What makes you think the movie was made by a leftist?

    2. How can you compare a movie depicting a crime with a threat to commit it, or even a desire that someone commit it? Do you have the same problem with all crime movies? Do you think any movie about a rape or a bank robbery is threatening or advocating those crimes?

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  128. 93. LOL. Principle.

    DNF (208255)

  129. I agree that some comments are irresponsible and more harmful in the long run and should be withheld, and one can self-police one’s own “virtual living room”.

    Unless a comment is a direct and personal assault on another commenter, a completely off-topic response, or a pointlessly directionless expression of vitriol, censorship should be avoided.

    Even if a comment isn’t a particularly directly constructive one, an expression of outrage does two things:
    1) Catharsis
    2) If there is sufficient outrage, which expression can make more awareness (“I am not alone in being highly outraged at this”) it can translate into action — and even if it starts with something fairly mindless like “they should be shot” — it can translate into something valid and legal as well as concrete.

    Again: It’s Patterico’s choice. But I suggest it’s a bad idea to engage in any kind of censorship which isn’t called for by the above suggestions.

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  130. I hope there is a special place in hell reserved for that horrible woman.

    I don’t get it. What kind of threat is this? That the commenter hopes she rots in Hell? That is hardly a threat unless the commenter is God. In which case good luck with the subpoena.

    I see this a lot. Every time someone prays for someone’s (e.g. the president’s) death, or for misfortune to befall someone, you have people jabbering about threats, and how they should be arrested for it. And yet how can anything be more silly? Praying for someone’s death pretty much means one does not intend to kill the person oneself, but is asking God to do it. How can that be a threat? Does the accuser imagine that the person doing the praying controls God, and prayer is some sort of magic spell that can directly cause the target’s death?! If God chooses to grant the prayer, would they charge the person who prayed for it with murder?!

    I do have an answer, though, and this one really does depend on a leftist mentality. Right-wing people just don’t think like this. What I think is going on is that the people who confuse prayer wit threats are not just atheists, but believe that everyone is really an atheist. They take it for granted that religion is a giant RPG, that nobody actually takes seriously. And therefore when someone “prays to God” to do something, they actually mean to do it themselves, or tey’re calling for someone else, some living human being, to do it. “Praying” is just a sort of code, to provide cover, or an understood convention of speech.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  131. As for threats, if these are threats, what is THIS and why can Amazon continue to sell it?

    Why not? How’s it different from any crime film?

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  132. Or this, still up on Youtube:

    “I would kill Dick Cheney if I could get away with it.”

    The speaker is saying what he would do if some counterfactual condition held. The direct implication of his words is that since he can’t get away with it, he doesn’t intend to do it. That’s the exact opposite of a threat, and is without doubt protected speech.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  133. 1. What makes you think the movie was made by a leftist?

    Well Milhouse, if it was made in Hollywood chances are it was made by a leftist, no? Or has Hollywood gone through a sudden shift rightward? Or are you in denial of Hollywood’s leanings in general?

    2. How can you compare a movie depicting a crime with a threat to commit it, or even a desire that someone commit it?

    I didn’t. I simply noted, or observed if you will, the apoplexy of leftist judges when they were in the crosshairs as opposed to their (the leftists) participation in and acceptance of the showing of the murder of a sitting US President. That’s all. From my observation the first was considered “free speech” the second considered a threat.

    Do you have the same problem with all crime movies? Do you think any movie about a rape or a bank robbery is threatening or advocating those crimes?

    Yes, Milhouse. I absolutely believe every movie about every subject even crime advocates that subject. Really dude? Is that all ya got, silly innuendo and straw men?

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  134. 1. What makes you think the movie was made by a leftist?

    What contortion of reality allows you to imagine that’s not the way to BET?

    The creator’s a euro, and he’s a media person. BOTH lean strongly to the left. The intersection of the two even more so.

    “Leftist, until demonstrated otherwise.”

    By all means, prove it wrong.

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  135. Steve57, I consider it a matter of simple *politeness* to refer to a person by the name they wish to be referred to by. […]I do not consider it hate speech to refer to her as Bruce, nor do I think it should be illegal to do so. But I do consider it to be unjustifiably rude.

    To his face, yes; but do you think that politeness and rudeness have any meaning in the person’s absence? Is it possible to be polite or rude to someone who isn’t present? One can be complimentary or insulting, but that isn’t the same thing. There’s nothing insulting about calling him Bruce; until very recently he was happy to be called Bruce, so how can it be insulting now? What’s rude about doing it to his face is not the term itself, but unnecessarily ignoring a harmless request. Calling him Bruce when he’s asked you not to is exactly as rude as ignoring his request to pass the salt, or to open or shut the window, or not to smoke. As I see it the whole concept doesn’t apply when he’s not there.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  136. You consider it unjustifiably rude? What’s unjustifiably rude is a grown man wearing make up and a dress insisting I address him with a woman’s name like I’m some kind of blind, stupid fool. He’s the one with the problem. He’s the one who “unjustifiably” claims to be a woman. Not me. He’s the rude idiot, not me. And if anyone here believes I’m going to participate in a circus by a person suffering from sexual psychosis to change the language culture or truth of the situation then you’re just being rude. BTW, when you refer to it as “her” you’re enabling the charade. It’s got nuts and a putz, it’s a boy! Face the truth damn it. Stop letting idiots dictate the language and culture.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  137. I think it would be fair to conclude that I have some sympathy for the fear former President Bush and his family must have felt.

    Why would they have felt any fear from the fact that this movie was made? Surely they had, by that time, already imagined many times the possibility of such a crime taking place. How was a movie about it different from the war games the Secret Service undoubtedly held with the same premise, or the conversation GWB must have had with Dick Cheney about this possibility when he chose him as his running mate?

    It’s just a movie. About a hypothetical crime. “Suppose someone shot the president” is no different from “suppose someone blew up Penn Station at rush hour”, or “suppose someone stole the liberty bell”.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  138. Marie Harf noted that Abraham Lincoln once said that it is like totally hard because like the problem with quotes on the internet is that it’s like totally hard to like verify their authenticity.

    Lincoln did write that he wished the first amendment didn’t prevent him from hanging those who encouraged soldiers to desert, as he must hang the deserters.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  139. “Unjustifiably rude” is what you call someone when you know you won’t get any traction with “transphobic”, “homophobic”, “sexist”, “bigot”, etc., etc., etc..

    nk (dbc370)

  140. 1. What makes you think the movie was made by a leftist?

    Well Milhouse, if it was made in Hollywood chances are it was made by a leftist, no? Or has Hollywood gone through a sudden shift rightward? Or are you in denial of Hollywood’s leanings in general?

    Where’d you get the idea it was made in Hollywood?

    2. How can you compare a movie depicting a crime with a threat to commit it, or even a desire that someone commit it?

    I didn’t. I simply noted, or observed if you will, the apoplexy of leftist judges when they were in the crosshairs as opposed to their (the leftists) participation in and acceptance of the showing of the murder of a sitting US President

    In this case they were in the crosshairs. The comments in question, while not threatening them, were undoubtedly wishing for their deaths. How can you compare them to a movie that merely depicts a crime?

    Do you have the same problem with all crime movies? Do you think any movie about a rape or a bank robbery is threatening or advocating those crimes?

    Yes, Milhouse. I absolutely believe every movie about every subject even crime advocates that subject. Really dude? Is that all ya got, silly innuendo and straw men?

    How do you distinguish this crime movie from all others? If you don’t believe that all movies advocate the events they depict, then why do you believe that about this movie?

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  141. The creator’s a euro, and he’s a media person. BOTH lean strongly to the left. The intersection of the two even more so.

    If every movie in existence is to be presumed leftist until proven otherwise, then what does the word “left” add to the sentence “the left can put out a movie”? How is it different from “a movie can be made”, and we assume it was by “the left”?

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  142. Emphasis. Avoiding redundancy and prolixity is generally a good rule but it’s not carved in concrete or set in stone.

    nk (dbc370)

  143. Where’d you get the idea it was made in Hollywood?

    Milhouse, you need to stop jumping to conclusions and ou need to stop jumping on me every time I type a comment. I never said the movie was made by a leftist or in Hollywood . I said IFit was made in Hollywood who else would have made it? Are you being deliberately obtuse?

    If every movie in existence is to be presumed leftist until proven otherwise, then what does the word “left” add to the sentence “the left can put out a movie”? How is it different from “a movie can be made”, and we assume it was by “the left”?

    I’m sorry Milhouse but at this point further discussion is futile. Apparently no matter what I say I’m wrong. It’s like arguing with a female lawyer. You win. And just so you know what the word “left” adds to a sentence, it adds direction for crap sake. Can’t you even see the obvious?

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  144. All I see is people on my side of politics waxing hysterical over a crime movie, convinced for no reason that it advocates the crime that it’s about, and that it was made by someone who would like for the crime to have been committed. And they’ve been doing this ever since it was made, without ever once explaining why they think that.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  145. That’s the sort of hysteria I expect from the left, not from the right.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  146. It occurs to me that perhaps the real chilling effect of these sunpoenas is intended to be Reason itself and the right wing blogosphere. Preparing the battlespace for 2016.

    patricia (5fc097)

  147. Sometimes Milhouse is intentionally obtuse. Or accidentally. But obtuse, nonetheless.

    JD (3b5483)

  148. nk, at 141: I believe my demeanor here over the long period of time that I’ve been commenting demonstrates that I place a high value on what I perceive as politeness. Given that history, for me to use ‘unjustifiably rude’ as a criticism of someone’s behavior seems *consistent* with the expectations I have of my own behavior – not a replacement for transphobic/sexist/bigoted/etc.

    My objection is not to the content of the heart of the person calling Caitlyn Bruce; I cannot tell *why* the person is doing that, and so I have no business making allegations about motives (as would be done by the words you listed). However, I *can* observe that the person is declining to comply with Caitlynn’s request that she be called Caitlynn and not Bruce, and I can view that behavioral choice as being unjustifiably rude. :)

    Milhouse has a point that normally “please do not do [x] in my presence” requests expire when the individual who made them is not physically present. I think “please refer to me by [$name]” is one of the exceptions.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  149. So why don’t you explain it, JD. What is the big deal about this movie. Why have right-wingers been so hysterical about it ever since it came out? I don’t get it.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  150. it was a film that was celebrated for depicting the assasination of a presidents, it was part of a genre with Baker’s Checkpoint, of course, the assasin is a patsy to provoke another war all together, it seems
    incongruous with current trends,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  151. What is this infatuation of yours to overstate other people’s positions, or try to make others (in this case me) answer for other people’s positions. I said nothing about the movie, and don’t care to answer for those that have. I do see the parallel
    That others are trying to draw for you, some protected speech is protected, and other
    Protected speech gets a subpoena.

    JD (3b5483)

  152. aphrael – I would be more inclined to call him Caitlyn than to use she/her feminine pronouns, since he isn’t a woman.

    JD (3b5483)

  153. Having called Jenner a “strongman turned bearded lady in the Kardashian Carnival sideshow”, I am at a loss on how to respond to you then, aphrael. I don’t want to be rude to you.

    nk (dbc370)

  154. #129,

    There is no doubt that the Bush assassination movie was made for a target market of Bush-haters.

    If one dared to make an Obama assassination video today, who do you suppose your customers would be? Not that anyone would show it, or give it Film Festival awards. Not that you would be free from the Secret Service crawling up your rear, or that Amazon would list your film. Or that those few who could find a way to view it would go unnoticed by TPTB.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  155. #132

    Agree mostly, but even if one prayed that someone would take this [person] out and shoot them, that is still not a threat. So even if you take a prayer as a call to action, it is still just a prayer.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  156. Milhouse,

    The whole thing about the Bush film was not that it was a threat in MY understanding of a threat, but that it was a threat within the understanding of whomever issued those subpoenas.

    The thing about Cheney was that it was worse than ANY of the comments on REASON. “I do it if I could” is more worrisome — the person has the means to carry it out — than “somebody ought to, some day” which relies on the actions of unknown others.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  157. There is no doubt that the Bush assassination movie was made for a target market of Bush-haters.

    What makes you think so? I see every room for doubting it. Why would a Bush-lover not like this movie?

    If one dared to make an Obama assassination video today, who do you suppose your customers would be?

    Everyone, I suppose. Just as a movie about a rape is not targeted at misogynists, and a movie about a bank robbery is not targeted at people who hate banks.

    Not that anyone would show it, or give it Film Festival awards.

    I don’t understand why you would think so.

    Not that you would be free from the Secret Service crawling up your rear, or that Amazon would list your film.

    Amazon would definitely list it. I find it completely bizarre that you even doubt this, let alone that you’re so sure of the opposite. And the secret service would do exactly what it did about this movie; since it was made overseas, nothing. If it were made in the USA, I suppose the secret service might have taken an interest, but not one that would have a chilling effect.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  158. it was clearly a fantasy not unlike independence day where the white house goes boom

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  159. The whole thing about the Bush film was not that it was a threat in MY understanding of a threat, but that it was a threat within the understanding of whomever issued those subpoenas.

    I don’t see how, even by their paranoid standards. These comments on Reason at least were wishing for the judge’s death. The movie was not wishing for Bush’s asssassination, any more htan any crime movie is wishing for the crime it depicts to occur.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  160. I vote for intentionally obtuse.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  161. it was clearly a fantasy not unlike independence day where the white house goes boom

    And did the Secret Service take an interest in that? Not as far as I know.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  162. Why don’t you try explaining it, then, Kevin? What exactly can anyone see as threatening in this movie, even someone so paranoid as to see threats in the Reason comments?

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  163. because it was clearly a fantasy

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  164. all is well:

    You’d think 0bama would be more careful with his own safety.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  165. A fantasy as in “not real”, like Independence Day, or a fantasy as in wish fulfilment?

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  166. a lil bit of both i would imagine cause of the film had to play globally

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  167. Kevin M – agreed. Intentional.

    JD (3b5483)

  168. it was a revisiting of ‘war of the worlds’ back when Roland Emmrich wasn’t a sky dragon worshiper, of 2012 the lest said, the better,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  169. Was Independence Day wish fulfilment? What about every other crime movie ever made? Why would it need an element of wish fulfilment to play globally, when most crime movies don’t? It’s just another movie about a fictional crime, and someone accused of committing it.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  170. in the Clinton era, you had heroic presidents, like Harrison Ford, and Bill Pullman’s characters, in the 00s, you had the horrible Manchurian remake, and fare like this Canadian import, yes there was also Murder at 1600, but that was a right wing plot, socalled,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  171. Independence Day was not about a crime it was about mean-spirited aliens what blow up the White House

    and a tunnel

    but the dog survives

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  172. Deport d.c.

    mg (31009b)

  173. Independence Day also had James Duval in it who’s been working like an absolutely insane person

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  174. Instapundit (Glenn Reynolds) often appends comment to news links with an allusion to 18th century protests, of the form “Corrupt bureaucrat. Tar. Feathers. Some assembly required.”

    Given that the modern, incorrect, understanding of “tar” is hot asphalt, which if contacting bare skin induces third degree burns as well as adherence of the feathers, and given the repetition of the instruction, does professor Reynolds bear any guilt if some modern moron actually, litterally, does burn, encase in asphalt, and attach feathers to some targeted official Reynolds has publicized?

    Pouncer (ed0078)

  175. Milhouse, I am done for now. You argue a lot like a troll — assert, deflect, ask for more detail, and ignore arguments at will. You never quite seem to engage, always looking for a new way to make the same assertions, which having come from your own mind MUST be the truth.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  176. narciso–

    In the oughts you had a succession of presidents on “24” who, excepting for a noble “first” African-American who the ad guys wanted to kill, you had a progression of incompetents and weasels. Culminating in a Nixon analogue who created a terror attack to boost support (get it?).

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  177. well I didn’t want to belabor the point, but yes,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  178. happy–

    In his biz, you never ever say no to a role.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  179. *bad guys

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  180. If there is a special place in the criminal codes for those who violate the law under “color of authority,” why not a special place in hell for moral breaches under color of authority?

    How in the world is the “special place in hell” comment of a kind with the others?

    I find myself increasingly sympathetic to excesses of speech by those who are terrified of our descent into authoritarianism.

    I understand that the entire legal staff of the Orange County District Attorney’s office (some 200+ prosecutors) has been asked to recuse itself in a case involving a criminal conspiracy to procure falsified jailhouse witness testimony that the entire prosecutorial staff was a party to. It is a terrifying story.

    ThOR (b81f2a)

  181. Milhouse, really man. You gotta stop beating every last word to death. You’re taking the fun out of commenting. Geesh.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  182. R.I.P. Christopher Lee, ac•tor

    R.I.P. Ornette Coleman, jazz saxophonist

    Icy (28ed32)

  183. 150. nk, at 141: I believe my demeanor here over the long period of time that I’ve been commenting demonstrates that I place a high value on what I perceive as politeness. Given that history, for me to use ‘unjustifiably rude’ as a criticism of someone’s behavior seems *consistent* with the expectations I have of my own behavior – not a replacement for transphobic/sexist/bigoted/etc.

    My objection is not to the content of the heart of the person calling Caitlyn Bruce; I cannot tell *why* the person is doing that, and so I have no business making allegations about motives (as would be done by the words you listed). However, I *can* observe that the person is declining to comply with Caitlynn’s request that she be called Caitlynn and not Bruce, and I can view that behavioral choice as being unjustifiably rude. :)…

    aphrael (69b4f7) — 6/11/2015 @ 7:59 am

    I have already explained my motives, aphrael. I recognize these techniques for what they are. The coercive persuasion techniques you will find in any totalitarian regime or cult. In which people are not allowed to perceive reality, and express their observations of reality, but rather must accept the cult/government’s view of causality and reality.

    Ultimately, I’m aware of the agenda.

    http://www.un.org/esa/socdev/documents/ifsd/SocialJustice.pdf

    Pages 2 – 3 of the report:

    Arguments founded on moral fairness are easily disposed of in an atmosphere of moral relativism and cultural pluralism. Present-day believers in an absolute truth identified with virtue and justice are neither willing nor desirable companions for the defenders of social justice.

    And what is social justice, ultimately?

    Pages 5 – 6:

    …The great transformation that has shaken the world was set in motion a couple decades ago and shaped by the rise to preeminence of the United States, a nation embodying the political philosophy of liberalism and its economic and financial component, global capitalism. Liberalism has freedom and economic justice at its core. Global capitalism gives economic and financial forces the power to treat the world as a global market. As these ideas and forces swept the world, communist systems collapsed and socialism and social democracy retreated, as did the notion that there should be public institutions at both the national and international levels that defined the common good, pursued social justice, and had the power to take effective action.

    …Social justice is not possible without strong and coherent redistributive policies conceived and implemented by public agencies.

    Once again, aphrael, you seem to be unaware of the totalitarian and ultimately marxist roots of the ideas you find it “polite” to accept. You may think it’s impolite of me to defend my right to resist this indoctrination into letting the collective do my thinking for me.

    But social justice is, as any use of the word “justice” qualified by placing another word in front, injustice. As the UN report shows, as a visit to any college campus where “transphobia” is just one of the cudgels used to force people to surrender their own minds to the will to power of the progressive left, social justice depends upon “moral relativism.” And that requires destroying any belief in “absolute truth identified with virtue and justice.”

    In other words, there is no such thing as truth independent of the agenda. This is the stalinist version of the “truth.” Communism is good, and the truth is good, therefore whatever advances communism is the truth, and whatever conflicts or hinders the advance of communism is a “lie” even if it conforms with objective facts.

    But then the Bolsheviks laughed at the idea of objective facts as “Bourgeois truth,” which of course is not truth at all per the preceding definition.

    Of course, the cultural Marxists of the Frankfurt school developed all sorts of Orwellian euphemisms to disguise the true nature of their agenda, what is now the leftist progressive agenda, so my insistence on objective facts, objective reality, and objective standards of justice are now denounced under SJW terms as “white privilege” or “rape culture.”

    Social justice is an indictment of a free society, an indictment issued by the dictators who would rule us. The cult leaders. And the goal is to empower the state, and destroy the independence of the individual. And the prerequisite is to destroy the individual’s claim to their own mind. Because then whatever the cult of the state subjectively declares to be justice is justice (i.e. in college tribunals accused rapists don’t deserve rights because they are presumptively guilty, the self-proclaimed victims always must believed, and anyone who mouths the words “due process” is also a sex criminal) because belief in objective truth and objective standards have been outlawed as hate crimes.

    So since I am aware of what’s behind this coercive indoctrination program, I will not concede one iota to it’s agenda. No matter how “impolite” you find my resistance. Because one small surrender will only lead to complete surrender to these totalitarian and evil people.

    So, until Bruce Jenner goes to the trouble to legally change his name he remains Bruce Jenner. IF he changes his name I will refer to him as Caitlyn. And whether he has the surgeries to mutilate his genitals or not he will never be a she. The doctors may form a mock-up of a vagina out of what remains of his scrotum, but he will never have cervical cancer. Why? Because he’s a woman.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  184. http://izquotes.com/quote/235676

    “I have come to feel strongly that the greatest service I can still render to my fellow men would be that I could make the speakers and writers among them thoroughly ashamed ever again to employ the term ‘social justice’.”

    Hayek wrote this two years after receiving the Nobel prize in economics. Because he too was aware of what the social justice agenda entailed. The surrender of liberty to an all powerful state, “justified” by the monopoly held by “public institutions at both the national and international levels that defined the common good.” A monopoly that requires as a prerequisite that no standards, no “truth” outside of what these public institutions subjectively declare to be the “truth.”

    This is why the government is demanding that people surrender their faculties, and accept the delusion that someone’s gender is whatever they identify as their gender, in place of the reality that is just not true.

    And I will “impolitely” point that out at every opportunity. In fact, I expect the fact that I intend to remain a refusenik a la Shcharansky to be called much worse. Perhaps even reprehensible. Which is why I’m defending the right of these Libertarian @$$holes to make their idiot comments free from government harassment. Because I recognize what is considered reprehensible will change over time, as the government is attempting to expand the definition of what constitutes a threat.

    And believe me, stating objective truth in opposition to their subjective, stalinist truth will constitute a threat.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  185. i hope his agent appreciates him he’s really a trooper

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  186. R.I.P. Dusty Rhodes, TV wrestling legend

    Icy (28ed32)

  187. narciso (ee1f88) — 6/11/2015 @ 8:32 am

    Here is a thought:

    These many recent hires many of whom have not received security clearance but were allowed to work anyway, prolly scan ideologically – which is good enough for “government work.” These new “pure” guys will now be in a nice position for the continuing work of the party – that is now more important than ever.

    I’ll take my tin foil hat off now.

    felipe (56556d)

  188. Steve57, at 186:

    In comment #141, said that “unjustifiably rude is what you call someone when you know you won’t get any traction with ‘transphobic’, ‘homophobic’, ‘sexist’, ‘bigot’, etc”. While I strongly suspect that he was using an abstract “you” rather than a concrete “you”, it was just ambiguous enough that I felt compelled to respond as though he were using a concrete “you” aimed specifically at me (since I was the one who had used the phrase ‘unjustifiably rude’).

    So in comment #150, I explained that I have *no interest* in using ‘homophobic’, ‘sexist’, ‘racist’, ‘bigoted’, or any similar word to describe an individual’s decision not to abide by Caitylnn Jenner’s request regarding the nomenclature one uses to describe her, because to use such terms would require that I judge their *intent* and their *inner mental state*, rather than simply observing their *behavior* and criticizing their behavior on the grounds that it is a direct refusal to abide by what, to me, is a relatively minor request.

    In my mind, declining to characterize the motives or intent of individuals is a prerequisite for reasonable discussion. It’s not something I can always manage to do, but it’s something that I aspire to, because I think it’s ethically and morally *correct* to do so.

    > You may think it’s impolite of me to defend my right to resist this indoctrination into letting the collective do my thinking for me.

    I think it’s impolite to decline to use the name that someone has asked you to use for them. Refusing to call Caitlynn Jenner Caitlynn is impolite in *exactly* the same way that it would be impolite for me to call you ‘Eric’, and to persist in doing so in the face of requests from you that I not do so.

    > you seem to be unaware of the totalitarian and ultimately marxist roots of the ideas you find it “polite” to accept

    Since the idea that I’m advocating for, in this moment, is “it is impolite to refuse to call people by the name they ask you to call them by”, I think the claim of totalitarian and marxist roots is an utter absurdity.

    Now, I think it would be a fair point to say that there’s an implicit “without a really good reason” to the position I’m taking, and that the real debate is about whether *this* is a good enough reason to refuse to call Caitlynn by the name she prefers.

    From my perspective, what you’re saying is: “calling Caitlynn “Caitlynn” would require that I accept totalitarian socialist indoctrination, which is a terrible thing, so that’s a good reason not to do it.”

    From my perspective, what you’re saiyng is “calling people by the name they prefer to be called by requires that I accept totalitarian socialist indoctrination”, which is lunacy.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  189. > Which is why I’m defending the right of these Libertarian @$$holes to make their idiot comments free from government harassment.

    As am I; I think they’re rude assholes, AND I think they have every right to be and the use of a subpoena to obtain information regarding their identities is abusive, and the ADA doing it should be disciplined.

    You and I are allies in that limited regard.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  190. I agree with you Steve57. About all of it. And using the Bruce Jenner example also. Bruce can change his name to Catlyn, it’s up to him. But He will never, ever be a she. He was born male and no matter how much denial, mutilation or reconstruction they do to him ( and I believe it to be immoral torture ) he’s gonna die a male whether or not he or anyone else is “comfortable” with it. Sorry Bruce, tough cookies. Just like although Michael Jackson was bleached white, he still died a black man. One may not like the hand he’s dealt by God but so far we are unable to change it. It’s really a shame that some people are so unhappy with themselves they will do anything to deny what and who they are. And it’s a sad sham modern society is willing to play along with this deceit of lies so they don’t hurt some snowflakes feelings.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  191. Who agrees with me?
    nk (dbc370) — 6/10/2015 @ 10:50 am

    I do.

    felipe (56556d)

  192. According to his Senate colleague Mark Kirk, Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) is a “bro with no ho.”

    happyfeet (a037ad)

  193. I’m with Hoahie and Steve57 on all this. I am reminded of John Cleese’ last line in the Loretta scene.
    “Symbolic of his struggle against reality.”

    Gazzer (be559b)

  194. Count me in, too, Gazzer. I’d rather be right than polite.

    felipe (56556d)

  195. felipe, it’s also because they are relentless. It is the thin end of a wedge. I see it with my friends in England. They no longer refer to husbands and wives; too oppressive, it’s always partner. To the point now that if someone mentions a partner your first instinct is to wonder if they are the ghey.

    Gazzer (be559b)

  196. 191. …From my perspective, what you’re saiyng is “calling people by the name they prefer to be called by requires that I accept totalitarian socialist indoctrination”, which is lunacy.

    aphrael (69b4f7) — 6/11/2015 @ 11:30 am

    Live in denial if you want.

    Just how clearly do the SJWs have to spell out their agenda before you’ll accept the fact that Hayek, I, and many others have long been onto their agenda? While you’ve been refusing to accept the existence of an agenda that I can well document? It’s not hard; they write reams of books, articles, and reports on their intentions. They hold public meetings and symposia on not only on their agenda, but how to market their agenda. And one of the keys is to deny the existence of their agenda.

    Apparently by your response their strategy and tactics are effective. You simply dismiss out of hand the fact that they are implementing their agenda before your eyes, using the carefully studied euphemisms they write books about to train those who market that agenda…

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/147670001X/?tag=mh0b-20&hvadid=4161655389&hvqmt=b&hvbmt=bb&hvdev=c&ref=pd_sl_2s7tza8juf_b

    The Little Blue Book: The Essential Guide to Thinking and Talking Democratic

    (Note the not-so-subtle reference to Mao’s Little Red Book. Again, this is one of the coercive persuasive techniques used by cults; the use of loaded terms to distinguish between us/good/decent and them/bad/evil/”rude.”)

    …based purely on their openly-discussed and planned tactic of denying they are doing what they are doing. What they have talked about for decades of doing. What they brag about having done when they implement part of their agenda. As Senator Baucus drunkenly did on the Senate floor after passing Obamacare.

    Max Baucus: ObamaCare will help correct the “maldistribution” of income

    … So let’s ask the question the left never asks: how is it possible for an insurance company to pay for these giant medical bills? What makes it possible is a whole set of statistical calculations. For every person who needs open-heart surgery or chemotherapy, there have to be a certain number of other people who are paying their premiums but haven’t gotten seriously ill. If the insurance company has gotten its calculations right, the expenses for any one person’s catastrophic care are balanced out by the premiums other people pay “just in case.”

    You can see how Obama’s demands undermine this whole system. To ask insurance companies to cover a patient after the tumor is diagnosed is to ask them to take on a known expense. Combine that with another Obama demand: that insurance companies can’t charge higher rates for those who are at higher risk of getting sick. So if insurance companies have to take on a known expense and can’t charge a higher rate for it, how are they going to pay for it? By raising everyone else’s rates, redistributing their wealth to the new freeloaders.

    This isn’t insurance, it’s welfare. And that’s the whole point.

    Now, go back and read the transnational progressive left’s view of social justice as embodied in the UN report. I’ll repeat a portion here:

    Social justice is not possible without strong and coherent redistributive policies conceived and implemented by public agencies.

    Obamacare was never about providing anyone with health care. It was about growing HHS and the IRS, a small sample of the public agencies referenced in the UN report, in order to empower them to take the effective redistributive action that is the goal of the SJWs.

    And they themselves say that as a prerequisite to achieving their goals they have to establish subjective standards of truth, justice, and morality. Which requires the destruction of objective standards of truth, justice, and morality.

    Present-day believers in an absolute truth identified with virtue and justice are neither willing nor desirable companions for the defenders of social justice.

    They accurately describe me; I am not a willing companion in their jihad for relativism. And they truthfully describe me as undesirable. We understand each other.

    Yet you think this perfect understanding of what’s actually going on to be “lunacy.” Coincidentally the companion tactic to the progressive left’s denial that they are doing what they are doing is to denounce people who have pierced their veil as lunatics. Which, since their really isn’t a veil considering how openly they spell out their agenda, they must do in order to intimidate people into avoiding the mountains of evidence lest they be called name, too. I’d say their coercive persuasive techniques are effective. You don’t undermine my argument, aphrael. You demonstrate the truth of my argument.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  197. nk:

    Who agrees with me?

    I agree. I don’t think these commenters are real threats. I think they are being used as political tools, but that scares me almost as much. Anyone who opposes liberal ideology can be used by Democrats in these politicized times, and this Administration has been willing to cross every line to do it.

    DRJ (e80d46)

  198. aphrael,

    I agree with you that if someone in your personal life — someone you know well — asked you to call them by a different name, it would be rude to refuse to consider doing what s/he asks. But that seems different to me than a person you don’t know asking you to do this. In the latter case, I think it’s appropriate to use either the person’s legal name or the new name, as the speaker prefers.

    We require people to legally change their names for many reasons, including that it is a practical and useful convention. If Bruce Jenner wants everyone to call him Caitlyn, there is a simple way for him to make that happen. Go to court. Until then, IMO his request is something people are free to do with as they please.

    DRJ (e80d46)

  199. “George Lakoff is the progressive movement’s Jedi master of language. The Little Blue Book tells us how to say what we need to say to bring about the policy changes Americans need.” — Van Jones, author of Rebuild the Dream

    You can read all the reviews of The Little Blue Book at the link. All of them are by transnational progressive leftist activists such as Robert B. Reich, George Soros, Joan Blades (founder of Moveon.org), etc.

    But this is particularly revealing. Van Jones was Obama’s “Green Jobs Czar” is a self-admitted communist, as this article misleadingly reports:

    http://www.eastbayexpress.com/SevenDays/archives/2009/09/04/is-van-jones-in-trouble

    …Jones had already been attacked relentlessly by right-wingers in recent weeks for a 2005 comment he made to the Express in which he said he considered himself a “communist” for a time immediately after the Rodney King verdicts

    You will search in vain for anywhere in that article where Van Jones disavows communism; that he was only a communist “for a time immediately after the Rodney King verdicts:”

    http://www.eastbayexpress.com/oakland/the-new-face-of-environmentalism/Content?oid=1079539&showFullText=true

    (this quote isn’t on the first page; select full text)

    …Jones had planned to move to Washington, DC, and had already landed a job and an apartment there. But in jail, he said, “I met all these young radical people of color — I mean really radical, communists and anarchists. And it was, like, ‘This is what I need to be a part of.'” Although he already had a plane ticket, he decided to stay in San Francisco. “I spent the next ten years of my life working with a lot of those people I met in jail, trying to be a revolutionary.” In the months that followed, he let go of any lingering thoughts that he might fit in with the status quo. “I was a rowdy nationalist on April 28th, and then the verdicts came down on April 29th,” he said. “By August, I was a communist.”

    In 1994, the young activists formed a socialist collective, Standing Together to Organize a Revolutionary Movement, or STORM, which held study groups on the theories of Marx and Lenin and dreamed of a multiracial socialist utopia.

    The Rodney King trials were in 1992. Jones formed his Marxist collective/study groups in 1994. He was a “revolutionary” for the ten years.

    But four years after the original November 2005 article we get a very Soviet rewrite of history, asserting Jones had only been a communist for some brief but unspecified period “immediately after the Rodney King verdicts.”

    That’s one way the transnational progressive left deceives people. They rewrite history, and airbrush facts either away or into existence. After all it’s only the Bourgeoisie/privileged Whites who believe in such a thing as objective facts independent of the agenda. So Obama can falsely claim that Thomas Jefferson held the first Eid dinner in the WH, and that somehow he had a copy of the Quran for some other reason than he was preparing to fight the Barbary Coast pirates. Obama never says why Jefferson had that Quran; he airbrushes the reason Jefferson acquired that book out of history.

    But another way to manipulate reality is to dishonestly misuse terms. To have your own (the cult’s own) definitions for commonly used words that differ from the general understanding. This is why Van Jones is such a fan of Lakoff’s book. Because Lakoff’s book is entirely about how to misuse language so that people who would disagree with progressive leftist policies can be sold the “policy changes Americans need” by fooling them into believing they’re getting the policy changes they want.

    This explains the entire Obama legislative agenda. It is also an Alinskyite principal. Learn the language of the middle class in order to enlist the middle class in their own destruction.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  200. We require people to legally change their names for many reasons, including that it is a practical and useful convention. If Bruce Jenner wants everyone to call him Caitlyn, there is a simple way for him to make that happen. Go to court. Until then, IMO his request is something people are free to do with as they please.

    That said, DRJ, I’d like to point out my real name isn’t Hoagie. That was bestowed upon me by a friend 35 years ago when he called me The Hoagie Baron since I owned several hoagie stores around Philly. Other’s shortened it to just “Hoagie” and it stuck. I had nothing to do with it other than when called I did answer. Rude or not, I’m Hoagie but I’m still a male. And I don’t believe myself to be an actual sandwich. Really, I don’t.

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  201. As Steve57 points out, the left has been manipulating and distorting language for decades in order to fulfil it’s goals. I think at times some distortions have been described as “defining deviancy down”. It fits. They take the most perverse, soften it, then peddle it as normal. So sodomy becomes same sex partners. Sexual mutilation becomes transsexual. Killing babies in the womb becomes choice. Legalized racial discrimination becomes affirmative action. We could go on but all it becomes is twisting the truth to gain a hold on our Freedom. Don’t listen. They are the Sirens of envy and delusion!

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  202. but I have no desire to associate with people who make comments like that. I have already deleted one comment in this thread to that effect (by happyfeet), and I ask JD to keep an eye out for others and zap them when he sees them. Repeat offenders will be banned, and there’s no First Amendment violation in that.

    Not a good approach, particularly in context.

    Just A Guy (08458e)

  203. I think anyone’s generally entitled to be called what he or she prefers, as a matter of courtesy. DRJ’s right that there are indeed legal procedures available to those who want to formally change their legal names, and Caitlyn Jenner f/k/a Bruce Jenner probably ought do that.

    On the assumption that any name change petition would be in Los Angeles County Superior Court (since the individual in question reportedly lives in Malibu), I searched the civil and family records for “Jenner, Bruce.” I didn’t see a name change application, although I note that the website now lists “JENNER CAITLYN – Defendant/Respondent’s AKA” in the list of parties in one of the civil cases apparently arising from the recent traffic fatality in which he was involved. I can’t vouch for the thoroughness or accuracy of my search techniques; perhaps our host or other California lawyers could be more useful.

    I’m pretty sure the Austin City Council would instantly agree to changing the name of “Bruce Jenner Lane,” but I don’t know whether the required 50% of the people who live on that street now would go along. In Austin, that would very much depend on the neighborhood. I remember a huge fight in Austin many years ago when E. 19th Street — which runs along one border of the UT campus — was changed to “E. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.” Some of the objectors were fans of Dr. King, but thought the City ought name a new street after him, so they wouldn’t have to pay for the costs of the stationery & directory changes, and so the City wouldn’t have to replace all the street-sign poles with new, stronger ones that were rated capable of holding up the new extra-long street signs.

    Several of my kids’ friends as they grew up had … unfortunate … names. Names that surely got them teased. More than once, I’ve told my kids, “You can mention to your friend ____ that when he/she turns 18, I’d be glad to do a pro bono ‘compassionate’ name change lawsuit for them.”

    My legal name is “William Jack,” but that’s because my mother — after she awoke from anesthesia — insisted that my father file an amended birth certificate changing my name to that from his original and unilateral choice, “Billy Jack.” I was nevertheless called Billy Jack (little brother of Jim Bob) growing up, to my increasing distress (especially after a certain Tom Laughlin movie came out while I was a high school freshman and I started getting challenged by bullies to demonstrate my bad-ass Green Beret fighting techniques). I didn’t shed the nickname until I got to UT-Austin; otherwise I’d never have become Beldar (a slurred version of Bill Dyer).

    Beldar (fa637a)

  204. To complete the overlong and off-topic anecdote: I also remember being very confused as a small child by the fact that the President of the United States was named “John,” but he was also called “Jack” sometimes. I wondered why my own middle name wasn’t “John,” if “Jack” was a nickname for “John.” It wasn’t until he was assassinated (when I was in first grade) that I actually figured this out to my satisfaction, and then, of course, he was gone and the President’s middle name was “Baines.”

    For a few years, I insisted that I wanted my name to be “William Jackson,” since then I wouldn’t be legally named with a nickname; one of my dad’s friends thought that was hilarious and continued calling me “William Jackson” for many, many years thereafter (like 25 or so). However, by the time I could have done a legal name change on my own to change my middle name to the more formal version, though, I already had a high school transcript in the name “William Jack.” My own younger son’s legal middle name, though, is — accurately, and without use of any diminutives or nicknames — “Jackson.”

    Beldar (fa637a)

  205. A last tidbit: Most legal name changes are done as part of divorce decrees. They’re very rarely controversial. Most, but not all, reflect the divorcing wife’s desire to return to her maiden name after having assumed her husband’s surname upon their marriage. But I have occasionally seen name changes that follow other logics; and once I even saw a divorcing husband petition to have his name changed (it was granted, after the same showings required for any legal name change, which typically are rote assurances that it’s not being done to evade creditors or other legal responsibilities).

    Beldar (fa637a)

  206. 201. I agree with you that if someone in your personal life — someone you know well — asked you to call them by a different name, it would be rude to refuse to consider doing what s/he asks. But that seems different to me than a person you don’t know asking you to do this. In the latter case, I think it’s appropriate to use either the person’s legal name or the new name, as the speaker prefers…

    DRJ (e80d46) — 6/11/2015 @ 1:05 pm

    When such a request is accompanied by a declaration that “I am the new normal” I would consider the request rude, not my refusal to accede to it.

    https://www.yahoo.com/music/s/caitlyn-jenner-normal-first-am-cait-teaser-video-133012526.html

    By any objective standard there is nothing normal about what Bruce Jenner is doing. But then the SJWs have manufactured the transgender issue precisely because they believe it’s a useful weapon in their war to replace objectivity with relativism and subjectivity. So they’re using disordered and vulnerable people as human shields in their campaign. There’s nothing compassionate about that. Quite the opposite.

    If someone in my personal life that I wished to remain in personal life were to “come out” as the opposite sex I’d probably use their preferred name, but not out of politeness. Out of compassion, to try to gently but firmly encourage them to seek psychiatric help, not hormone therapy and surgery. I would not encourage anyone’s delusions about their gender confusion any more than I’d encourage an anorexic about his/her body image confusion.

    Walt Heyer is a man in his seventies who transitioned fully, i.e. had the sex change surgery, and regretted it after some years, and now has detransitioned and lives as a man. He now counsels the many people who have been damaged by ill advised and unnecessary gender reassignment surgeries they were pressured into as a magic bullet that would fix underlying psychological issues. He blogs at:

    http://www.sexchangeregret.com/

    Here are excerpts from a couple of of his recent articles; many of his articles can be found at the link below (as well as on his website above):

    http://thefederalist.com/author/walt-heyer/

    Sex Change” Surgery: What Bruce Jenner, Diane Sawyer, and You Should Know

    Bruce Jenner and Diane Sawyer could benefit from a history lesson. I know, because I suffered through “sex change” surgery and lived as a woman for eight years. The surgery fixed nothing—it only masked and exacerbated deeper psychological problems.

    The beginnings of the transgender movement have gotten lost today in the push for transgender rights, acceptance, and tolerance. If more people were aware of the dark and troubled history of sex-reassignment surgery, perhaps we wouldn’t be so quick to push people toward it.

    The setting for the first transgender surgeries (mostly male-to-female) was in university-based clinics, starting in the 1950s and progressing through the 1960s and the 1970s. When the researchers tallied the results and found no objective proof that it was successful—and, in fact, evidence that it was harmful—the universities stopped offering sex-reassignment surgery.

    Since then, private surgeons have stepped in to take their place. Without any scrutiny or accountability for their results, their practices have grown, leaving shame, regret, and suicide in their wake.

    …Results from Johns Hopkins: Surgery Gives No Relief

    Dr. Money became the co-founder of one of the first university-based gender clinics in the United States at Johns Hopkins University, where gender reassignment surgery was performed. After the clinic had been in operation for several years, Dr. Paul McHugh, the director of psychiatry and behavioral science at Hopkins, wanted more than Money’s assurances of success immediately following surgery. McHugh wanted more evidence. Long-term, were patients any better off after surgery?

    McHugh assigned the task of evaluating outcomes to Dr. Jon Meyer, the chairman of the Hopkins gender clinic. Meyer selected fifty subjects from those treated at the Hopkins clinic, both those who had undergone gender reassignment surgery and those who had not had surgery. The results of this study completely refuted Money’s claims about the positive outcomes of sex-change surgery. The objective report showed no medical necessity for surgery.

    On August 10, 1979, Dr. Meyer announced his results: “To say this type of surgery cures psychiatric disturbance is incorrect. We now have objective evidence that there is no real difference in the transsexual’s adjustments to life in terms of job, educational attainment, marital adjustment and social stability.” He later told The New York Times: “My personal feeling is that the surgery is not a proper treatment for a psychiatric disorder, and it’s clear to me these patients have severe psychological problems that don’t go away following surgery.”

    Less than six months later, the Johns Hopkins gender clinic closed. Other university-affiliated gender clinics across the country followed suit, completely ceasing to perform gender reassignment surgery. No success was reported anywhere.

    The above mentioned Dr. Money was a fraud and a pedophile who abused his juvenile transgender patients.

    Dear Bruce Jenner: You Could Really Be Hurting People

    Here’s some heartfelt caution for Bruce Jenner from another who had the surgeries, the glamor shots, the excitement, the adulation—and, finally, the regret of going transgender.

    …While Bruce Jenner Focuses on Himself, Others Suffer

    I said I would use caution not to harm Jenner. But sometimes the humor or irony of certain aspects of the media circus are too tempting. When I started thinking about how well-planned this media launch has been, I could not help seeing the humor in using a magazine called “Vanity Fair.”

    When I looked up the meaning of the word vanity, everything fell into place. Vanity is defined as “the quality of having too much pride in one’s appearance and/or accomplishments” and also “being excessively proud of oneself or one’s qualities or possessions; self-conceit.” Perhaps it is no accident Jenner arrange to debut her new appearance on the cover of a magazine called Vanity Fair.

    What Jenner nor the media has not talked about is that 62.7 percent of those who have the desire to change genders suffer from a variety of other psychological and psychiatric disorders that haven’t been diagnosed and therefore haven’t been treated. The other disorders range from depression and anxiety to bipolar, dissociative, personality, and obsessive-compulsive disorders and narcissism.

    The desire to change genders can be the “acting out” of one of these disorders. When the underlying psychological disorder is treated, the desire for a change of gender subsides.

    The Transgender Experts Aren’t

    That was my experience. I was told by leading gender experts that my lifelong anxiety and gender distress would be alleviated by changing genders.

    …After doing the tough work in counseling, I returned to my male gender identity and achieved real serenity.

    Those who think gender reassignment is a cure for their depression, anxiety, and gender distress need to be warned. I get hundreds of emails from visitors to my web site, http://www.sexchangeregret.com—letters from regretters and their wives, parents, brothers, and sisters…

    Bruce Jenner Wants To Change The World When He Should Change His Mind
    Personal and medical experience indicates that switching genders will not give Bruce Jenner peace.

    …But after eight years of living as a woman, my once-successful transition turned on me. I mean the exhilaration from the early days wore off, and I found myself reflecting on my transition. I came to realize that all the changes to my appearance, dramatic and effective as they were, were only cosmetic. All the changes to my identity documents—birth certificate, driver’s license, Social Security card—were in name only, simply words on the paper. If I only could have remained living in my delusional gender bubble all would have been good, perhaps.

    … I discovered much too late that gender change surgery was not a medical necessity at all. I can admit that transition was the biggest mistake of my life.

    …We should all be concerned for Jenner. A whopping 41 percent of transgenders report attempting suicide. We saw a glimpse of how fragile Jenner is when he shared that he recently considered suicide.

    …I wish I could say I’m the only transgender to regret transitioning, but contrary to what the media would lead us to believe, I know I’m not the first or the last. I get many emails from male-to-female transgenders who eventually regretted their gender change. Some say regret came as early as three months after surgery; others tell me it took 8, 10, 15, even 30 years to admit that gender change was the biggest mistake of their life. I have received comments such as, “How could I have been so stupid?”

    The fact that so many people regret “transitioning,” and that so many don’t live through that regret, is not widely known or discussed because people who publicly declare their regret are buried in venom by the progressive left as traitors to the cause. We saw much the same venom directed at the two gay hoteliers who committed the sin of fraternizing with the enemy in the form of Ted Cruz.

    Make no mistake, though. Just as #blacklivesmatter only when they advance the anti-police narrative, while the thousands times more black lives taken by the criminality that results from disfunctional progressive leftist social policies matter not at all, #transgenderlivesmatter only when they can be used to advance the narrative. That there is no objective reality, nothing is as it appears, gender is only a social construct, and humanity has been getting it wrong all these millenia. So now the masses must be instructed by their betters on how to perceive this “new normal,” and can not be under any circumstances left to their own devices.

    Transgenders who wake up to the fact that it impossible to change sexes are living proof the progressive left are wrong about the above. The above progressive left narrative about gender is purely ideological. There is such a thing as reality. And in reality gender is very much a product of biology.

    Consequently the living evidence must be destroyed, or at the very least silenced. As we have learned from the #blacklivesmatter crowd, they don’t really care about how many bodies pile up while they advance their agenda.

    I don’t see people like Bruce Jenner and their inner turmoil as a partisan issue. But the ideologues of the “everything is political” progressive left do. They see everything as a partisan ideological issue; see the comment thread on Seinfeld’s refusal to do stand-up at college campuses for further evidence of that. Or for that matter the progressive left’s “brilliant” pajama boy campaign in which the screaming automatons of the left were told to politicize Thanksgiving and Christmas and harangue their relatives about Obamacare (a visit to the Stasi museum in the former East Berlin will provide ample evidence of where the progs stole that idea). Or the Obama campaigns push to politicize weddings by encouraging their mindless followers to set up wedding registries with their campaign so their relatives and guests would be coerced into donating to Obama rather than buying gifts. Or…

    The examples are endless.

    The bottom line is that I won’t be compelled or even nudged into accepting the progressive left’s alternative universe nor their loaded terms nor their speech conventions nor their redefinition of the rules of civility. It is rude to demand that I accept the abnormal as the new normal, just as it rude to demand as a condition of attending a wedding I contribute to a politician I despise (some did; some actually were that crass and boorish, but no one in my social circle).

    Steve57 (48418e)

  207. A comment like “Its judges like these that should be taken out back and shot” may not be illegal, but I have no desire to associate with people who make comments like that.

    I’m curious; would you associate with University of Tennessee law professor and eminent blogger Instapundit, Glenn Reynolds?

    http://pjmedia.com/instapundit/203125/

    March 4, 2015

    TAR. FEATHERS. Parents held responsible for ‘unsubstantiated’ neglect. “‘Free-range’ parents have been found ‘responsible’ for ‘unsubstantiated’ child neglect because they let their kids — ages 10 and 6 — walk home from a park near their Maryland home, reports the Washington Post. Montgomery County Child Protective Services investigated Danielle and Alexander Meitiv’s parenting for two months before reaching that Orwellian verdict.”

    I would rather live in a world where bureaucrats who behaved this way faced tarring and feathering on a regular basis, than a world in which they feel free to perpetrate such outrages without consequence.

    I’m curious as to the limits of speech that may is be legal but is beyond the pale of civil discourse.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  208. “Not a good approach, particularly in context.
    Just A Guy (08458e) — 6/11/2015 @ 1:47 pm”

    Frankly, I am surprised it took one of the mendoucheous trolls this long to take this utterly predictable and silly position.

    JD (3b5483)

  209. these toves, they are too slithy

    happyfeet (a16d51)

  210. Beldar…in a way, Billy Jack the movie character is a good fit for you. Just not in the way the bullies wanted.

    kishnevi (9c4b9c)

  211. Mr. Feets I blame those outtgrabing mome raths.

    kishnevi (9c4b9c)

  212. I couldn’t care much less about the Silk Road case. What I do care about are the actions of the DoJ. Taking the opinion of Patterico, Popehat and others that no true threats were issued in those comments, I fear that this is merely the camel’s nose under the tent toward comment surveillance and blog content monitoring – especial with the advent of so-called Net Neutrality.

    Beasts of England (1dc23f)

  213. Okay then… my name is Raymond J. Johnson, Jr. Now you can call me Ray, or you can call me J, or you can call me Johnny, or you can call me Sonny, or you can call me Junie, or you can call me Junior; now you can call me Ray J, or you can call me RJ, or you can call me RJJ, or you can call me RJJ Jr, but you doesn’t hasta call me Johnson!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  214. I am going to be disputatious.
    A monopoly that requires as a prerequisite that no standards, no “truth” outside of what these public institutions subjectively declare to be the “truth.”
    Quoth the Steve who is not a bottle of ketchup.

    Which could be used to describe the Unam Apostolicum etc for much of the last 1700 years.

    A lot of what you think of as objective truth is merely the intellectual and cultural conformity of European society in the Christian era, in part coercively imposed and in part generally accepted by intellectual inertia. You think of gender as a function of biological sexual identity, but it is possible to operate on the premise that gender, that is, psychological sexual identity, does not necessarily match biological sexual identity. Someone who is so psychologically at odds with themselves as to go through with sex change surgery is already too psychologically unbalanced to judge whether such surgery is truly a solution. You can expect a bad outcome no matter what.

    There is plenty of social conditioning involved in gender. Almost every day, I have a customer with a toddler boy who decides it will be fun to try on the glittery high heels displayed on our sales floor. The kid is not sexually confused. The kid is merely being a normal two or three year old, deciding that if it is fun for his mother to try on shoes, then he wants to join her in the fun.

    I do fundamentally agree with you about gender and SSM, but I am honest enough with myself to acknowledge my reasons are derived solely from the Torah, and of no value in convincing those who do not believe in the One Who Revealed Itself At Sinai.

    kishnevi (adea75)

  215. Col. @ 216
    But I bet you do not want to be called late for dinner.

    kishnevi (91d5c6)

  216. To: The Dana who knows how to push our buttons (with a little help from Patterico)

    Bravo!

    ThOR (b81f2a)

  217. Aphrael,

    I have had this experience. Someone I knew casually converted to Nation of Islam and took a new name. Others continued to speak of him, and address him, by his former name and he was gracious enough not to correct them. I thought that rude — if you don’t own your name, what do you own?

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  218. As for these judges: Snicker-snack.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  219. I thought that rude — if you don’t own your name, what do you own?

    Your reputation, Kevin M. You own your reputation. Which apparently by his name change meant very little. Why else would one betray Christ and Liberty in one move?

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  220. I am honest enough with myself to acknowledge my reasons are derived solely from the Torah

    Mine are from rude Greek villagers who casually refer to Bishops as “geldings” as they’re not allowed to be married. And are the butt of many jokes.

    A Greek man goes to see the Bishop, and the Bishop’s porter tells him, “I’m sorry, the Bishop is not available, he is taking his afternoon nap”. “Ah”, says the visitor, “he’s in the arms of Morpheus”. “I don’t know his name”, the porter says, “it’s some blond guy with a moustache”.

    nk (dbc370)

  221. A lot of what you think of as objective truth is merely the intellectual and cultural conformity of European society in the Christian era, in part coercively imposed and in part generally accepted by intellectual inertia.

    No, actually a lot of what I think of as objective truth is based on living in and experiencing non-European societies that never experienced a Christian era. It’s where I learned, for instance, that we in the US and Western Europe are the outlier for deciding that homosexuality is an immutable human trait. We are the outlier for thinking that homosexuality is an identity. The vast majority of humanity does not view it that way at all. Other societies may be more or less accepting of homosexual behavior but the idea that someone can be a homosexual is very much a minority viewpoint globally.

    I also follow the evidence. There is no evidence that sexual reassignment surgery helps anyone. Zero. Nobody who has researched the results, whether in the US or Europe has found any. There is plenty of evidence that a great many people who undergo the “transition” so far as to undergo the surgery regret it.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYv8w3n0a68

    Regretters Trailer

    Unfortunately the full length version of the documentary with English subtitles is no longer available.

    Regretters
    Orlando and Mikael go under the knife in hope of finding their true selves, only to realize that life on the other side isn?t as they had dreamed of. Now, well into their 60s, the two meet for the first time to talk about their lives as well as the one defining regret they both share: their sex change.

    This is a common reaction because they weren’t actually women trapped in men’s bodies. They had a) underlying psychological issues and b) as men they only had a stereotypical idea of what it would like to be a woman. Their caricature of womanhood, they discovered, was nothing like the reality.

    They could not become women, no matter how much hormones or surgery they inflicted on their bodies. And this does not depend on demanding mine or anyone else’s collaboration with their delusion. They realized on their own that they were delusional. I mean, this is Sweden, for chrissakes. Can you imagine a place more coercively transgender friendly (at least until they imported all the Muslims). Their bubbles burst on their own, with no help from “transphobics” like me.

    I know that the majority of people who desire to change their gender have underlying psychological issues. I know that a great many transgendered people regret it, but that it can’t be quantified because it has been too politicized.

    https://books.google.com/books?id=xhRxAwAAQBAJ&pg=PT95&lpg=PT95&dq=susan%27s.org+%22alan+finch%22&source=bl&ots=djU1JtLsbs&sig=VGubJICA7b7enLMrMqKDP3szTgw&hl=en&sa=X&ei=0c1XVNKTA5CWigKp8IHwAQ#v=onepage&q=susan%27s.org%20%22alan%20finch%22&f=false

    Gender Hurts: A Feminist Analysis of the Politics of Transgenderism

    …In response to this challenge to the legitimacy of the practice, some transgender activists and commentators have shown considerable anger and hostility towards those who have gone public with their regret. The acrimony has been quite fierce and may make those transgenders who have regrets fearful of being open about them. A form of policing is going on within the transgender community in attempt to shore up the leaky structure of the practice. One Australian regretter, who has been the object of this policing, is Alan Finch. He questioned his identity during adolescence, wondering whether he was a homosexual or had been born in the wrong body, and in his twenties went through full sex reassignment treatment including surgery. By 2004 Finch had decided he was a man living without a penis and would not attempt to have further genital surgery although at the time he was considering having the constructed vagina removed as the skin had become “scuffed and crusty.” Finch concluded, “I can’t see much point in mutilating my body anymore” (Batty, 2004). Finch has campaigned against what he calls the “sex change industry,” and believes all treatment should cease. He argues that

    transexualism was invented by psychiatrists … Their language is illusory. You fundamentally can’t change sex … the surgery doesn’t alter you genetically. It’s genital mutilation. My “vagina” was just a bag of my scrotum. It’s a pouch, like a kangaroo. What’s scary is you still feel like you have a penis when you’re sexually aroused. It’s like phantom limb syndrome. It’s all been a terrible misadventure. I’ve never been a woman, just Alan … the analogy I use about giving surgery to someone desperate to change sex is it’s a bit like offering liposuction to an anorexic.

    (Batty, 2004)

    Finch sued the only Australian gender identity clinic, at Melbourne’s Monash Medical Centre, for misdiagnosis. Commentators from the transgender community were verbally abusive towards Finch for his desertion of the cause…

    Considering the huge distress and social and personal disadvantages the regretters/survivors suffer, their online detractors can seem remarkably cruel. The case of seventy-five-year-old Gary Norton of the UK illustrates this. He had SRS twenty-three years ago, felt uncertain even on the operating table and is now living as a man (Strange, 2012). He wants reparative surgery on the National Health Service, but has been told there is no funding for reversals. Norton new the sex change was a mistake “when she grew sick of doing her hair and makeup and and continued to be attracted to straight women.” He has been particularly distressed that his children want no contact with him since SRS and he is lonely because women don’t want relationships with him. He relates that he went to his doctor about depression after being made redundant, and, on saying he was a cross-dresser, was advised to start taking hormones. After SRS he found being a woman too “fussy and time consuming;” he realised that he “hadn’t wanted to be a woman – I just liked dressing up as one from time to time and it should never have gone any further. It was devastating. I was a man trapped in a woman’s body and I was stuck with it” (ibid). Norton’s story, like Alan Finch, was not treated with any sympathy in the transgender online community…

    Conclusion

    There is increasing evidence to suggest that treatment aimed at physically changing bodies of men and women is ineffective in improving phyisical and mental health and social functioning…

    At most, transgender activists will admit to 5% of transgenders regretting the procedure. The hysterical over-the-top vitriol directed at those who go public with their regrets demonstrates the actual number is north of that. Like the “rape culture” inventors well know, when you use fabricated figures to support your wild claims (overcounting actual rapes, undercounting false rape accusations) the last thing you can permit is an examination of those statistics.

    So while it’s permissible to conduct surveys of people who’ve had cosmetic surgery to find that 65% of people regret doing so, a similar survey of transgenders who regret undergoing the procedure can not be allowed.

    Then of course there is scientific evidence for my position that I’m arguing objective truths. The XX and XY chromosomes determine not only differences in physiology but also brain function (perhaps even configuration). Observing that irrefutable fact will get you fired from any ivy league university; just ask Larry Summers (there is considerable hostility to this research as well).

    Ultimately your objection amounts to a form of the progressive left’s war against objectivity itself. What I think of as objective truth is just a social construct. I’ve touched on that earlier, when I sarcastically observed that my belief in a subjective reality is simply a product of my “white privilege.”

    No, in fact my position is based upon careful consideration of evidence. The very existence of that, as well, the progressive left denies. But the upshot is, if we accept that gender and reality itself is simply a social construct then that lends support to the progressive left’s demand to replace one social construct with another that is unabashedly a hostile, ideological, subjective construct cooked up over the past few decades in the gender and ethnic grievance studies department.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  222. nk, Rabbis are married, so the jokes are different.
    If you want advice, ask the rabbi. If you want the answer, ask his wife.

    kishnevi (91d5c6)

  223. Commentators from the transgender community were verbally abusive towards Finch for his desertion of the cause…

    As I’ve noted previously, regretters like Finch are treated as traitors because they are merely cannon fodder for the progressive leftist cause. They are not only useless, but destructive to the narrative when they don’t play their assigned role. Which is why they don’t care about the suicide rate; something like 20 times greater than for non-transgenders.

    In fact, they welcome that high suicide rate, like Hamas welcomes the photo opportunities when their human shields get killed (note the affinity between that outfit and our own progressive left; it’s not for no reason). Because they can falsely blame “transphobia” and demand society fundamentally transform itself, rather then blame the reality that SRS just doesn’t work.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  224. well I don’t know if i’d go that far, but when you ‘socially construct’ reality, one finds reality has the last word,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  225. The XX and XY chromosomes determine not only differences in physiology but also brain function (perhaps even configuration)
    Which is a function of physical sexual identity.
    Gender is a function of psychological sexual identity, and therefore is not the same thing. The Left claims one does not necessitate the other. You say it does. I say neither claim is validated by the current state of evidence. There is objective truth, but the objective truth is unknown to us at the current time.
    , rather then blame the reality that SRS just doesn’t work.
    I agree it does not work. But not for the reason you give. Transgender people are mentally screwed up, and that fact alone will doom most “solutions”, surgical or otherwise. Your figures merely confirm that.

    kishnevi (adea75)

  226. I renewed my drivers license yesterday and it says “gender”. The one I had from four years ago said “sex”. I say, “Bite me”. Sex is nature, gender is grammar. This joke is as old as Attic Greek: The grammarian had three children — one male, one female, and one neuter.

    nk (dbc370)

  227. 230

    I assume you have read Mark Twain on the German language.
    Trot out the old memnonic

    Lee is me.
    Me is who
    Hu is he.
    He is she.
    She is who, which and that.

    Word in the left is a Hebrew pronoun (transliteration by sound not academic practice), word on the right its English equivalent.

    kishnevi (adea75)

  228. 229. … You say it does. I say neither claim is validated by the current state of evidence. There is objective truth, but the objective truth is unknown to us at the current time…

    kishnevi (adea75) — 6/11/2015 @ 7:11 pm

    For that reason alone we need to reject the ideological construct of gender cooked up in the ethnic and gender grievance studies departments. That there is no such thing as boys and girls. Because there most definitely are.

    But my position is based upon the fact that there is something as objective truth, while the transgender rights movement is based upon the claim that there is no such thing.

    http://www.thecrimson.com/column/the-red-line/article/2014/2/18/academic-freedom-justice/

    The Doctrine of Academic Freedom
    Let’s give up on academic freedom in favor of justice

    That, in a nutshell, is what the SJWs demand. That we give up freedom for an unjust ideological version of justice.

    …Yet the liberal obsession with “academic freedom” seems a bit misplaced to me. After all, no one ever has “full freedom” in research and publication. Which research proposals receive funding and what papers are accepted for publication are always contingent on political priorities. The words used to articulate a research question can have implications for its outcome. No academic question is ever “free” from political realities. If our university community opposes racism, sexism, and heterosexism, why should we put up with research that counters our goals simply in the name of “academic freedom”?

    Instead, I would like to propose a more rigorous standard: one of “academic justice.” When an academic community observes research promoting or justifying oppression, it should ensure that this research does not continue

    Academic justice. Again, the word justice is qualified, and qualified justice is injustice. The SJWs would politicize everything, and they start with projection. All research is already politicized, therefore research that does not support their agenda (and by definition anything outside their agenda is “oppressive”) must be suppressed.

    I may not be 100% right about objective reality, but I know that I don’t merely believe in it because of Christianity, coercion, and inertia. And my speech may be considered “rude” in some circles but I will insist on it. Because only through free speech, and academic freedom, can we hope to arrive at it.

    This scares the progressive left, hence their jihad to stamp out freedom. And the idea of objective truth.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  229. , but I know that I don’t merely believe in it because of Christianity, coercion, and inertia.
    You obviously do not respond well to coercion, and only a fool would accuse you of inertia…but certainly you are Christian, and believe certain things based on that. Just like much of what I believe is based on Judaism.

    But what I meant before is that some of the things which you say are objective truth…for instance the nature of marriage*…are actually just instances of cultural conformism, those that challenged it before now being forcibly suppressed by church and state, or drowned in cultural and intellectual inertia of the surrounding society. The same process you believe the Left is using now.

    *Think a moment. Your arguments against SSM are always one of two types–either explicitly based on the Bible and therefore automatic losses when your interlocutor does not believe in the Bible, even though they are winners when your interlocutor is a believing Christian; or based on the premise that “it has always been this way”…and if that is your only reason then you have no good reason.

    kishnevi (91d5c6)

  230. if biology is not objective, then what is, what you are talking about is subjective, propensities to certain practices,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  231. 233. …*Think a moment. Your arguments against SSM are always one of two types–either explicitly based on the Bible and therefore automatic losses when your interlocutor does not believe in the Bible, even though they are winners when your interlocutor is a believing Christian; or based on the premise that “it has always been this way”…and if that is your only reason then you have no good reason.

    kishnevi (91d5c6) — 6/11/2015 @ 8:57 pm

    No, I have never argued that “it has always been this way.” You have unfortunately wildly misunderstood my arguments. I have looked at the historical record, which is clear as to why marriage exists as a matter of civil law. Particularly in the case of English civil law, but not exclusively. I’ve commented considerably about Japan and the fact no one has individual birth, marriage, or death certificates because they merely have entries in family registries. Marriage, you see, being inconceivable as anything other than for the purpose of the continuation of the family, and consequently of wider society of which the family is the basic element, which excludes SSM. Societies keep learning the same lessons. Which proves that, objectively, there is such a thing as human nature, since both Christian and non-Christian societies keep arriving at the same conclusions. The human impulse to procreate must be channeled and regulated or else that impulse becomes destructive to society.

    Rather than “it’s always been that way,” my argument is that it isn’t a mystery what those lessons societies keep learning consist of. It’s been documented. We can look at it. And against the weight of that evidence, we have a theory cooked up in certain university departments that reject utterly the very basics of scholarship. It’s not a close call for me, but I’m prepared to present the evidence if anyone’s having any doubts.

    And the only reason I’ve ever made any Biblical arguments r.e. SSM is because of the unfortunate inclination of some former, but still nominally Christian denominations to attempt to be popular and adopt SSM. Which provides ammo to the SSM movement that the only reason people like I resist it is out of pure bias.

    So it’s necessary to demonstrate that it’s the people who are adopting SSM who don’t have a leg to stand on, from a Biblical perspective.

    That it isn’t a fact that the hold-outs are mere “homophobes” who are cynically “twisting” their religion, but the people who cave who are twisting and disregarding their religion to conform to modern American liberal tastes and, in fact, are in no longer any way meaningfully Christian. As the atheist Christopher Hitchens himself pointed out.

    http://www.portlandmonthlymag.com/news-and-profiles/people-and-profiles/articles/christopher-hitchens

    The complete interview between the renowned atheist Christopher Hitchens and Unitarian minister Marilyn Sewell

    …The religion you cite in your book is generally the fundamentalist faith of various kinds. I’m a liberal Christian, and I don’t take the stories from the scripture literally. I don’t believe in the doctrine of atonement (that Jesus died for our sins, for example). Do you make and distinction between fundamentalist faith and liberal religion?

    I would say that if you don’t believe that Jesus of Nazareth was the Christ and Messiah, and that he rose again from the dead and by his sacrifice our sins are forgiven, you’re really not in any meaningful sense a Christian.

    These so-called Christians don’t even take the idea Christ was the God literally, as the case of the Episcopal priest, in charge of “faith formation” at a Seattle Church no less, who saw no conflict between being an Episcopal priest and a Muslim at one and the same time. The Muslim view of Jesus is directly at odds with the view of Jesus that Christians must hold to call themselves Christian. This Episcopal priest wasn’t aware of that. Which is an example of the rot in these denominations.

    So this argument isn’t an “automatic loss” when my interlocutor doesn’t believe in the Bible. That isn’t the point of this argument at all. I deploy this argument against people who don’t believe in the Bible, but think somehow the fact that the Presbyterians or Episcopalians have dropped any resistance to SSM must mean I’m getting the Bible wrong. When in fact it’s the other way around.

    So don’t even go there.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  232. Sex is biology, gender is psychology.
    Sex is physical, gender is mental.

    Steve’s position is that sex determines gender, that physical determines mental, that there is a definite necessary linkage.

    The Left says there is no necessary linkage in nature.

    I say there is not enough evidence to let us decide which one is right.

    kishnevi (91d5c6)

  233. the left is blinkered, so where like minds like the late R.D Laing,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  234. My optical mouse made a few unfortunate highlight-and-delete errors that I didn’t catch (they happen fast as I’m typing along) to my previous comment, but I’ll leave it alone. I think everyone will get the gist.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  235. 236. Steve’s position is that sex determines gender, that physical determines mental, that there is a definite necessary linkage.

    kishnevi (91d5c6) — 6/11/2015 @ 9:59 pm

    On a more basic level my position is that gender as something separate from one’s genetically determined physical sex is a recent ideological construct.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  236. Sex is physical and psychological. Gender exists only in speech. Words can say anything. Bruce=Caitlyn=woman:Fire=ice=cold

    We have not always been at war with Eurasia. Freedom is not slavery. 2 ozs of chocolate is not more than 4 ozs of chocolate. “Cisnormative” does not make sense.

    nk (dbc370)

  237. By the way, the woodchipper comments are kind of funny. I get offended mainly at the comments whose content consists of: “[insert unamusing reference to killing public officials here]!”

    Patterico (3cc0c1)

  238. Most people took the woodchipper comment as nothing more than a reference to the movie Fargo.

    Not a threat.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  239. Kevin M, at 220 – I would find the behavior of those who did not use his new name to be rude, and *at the same time* I would be highly impressed, and deeply respect, your friend for not taking offense at it.

    aphrael (69b4f7)

  240. woodchipper lol

    happyfeet (831175)

  241. An interesting article at American Thinker. http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2015/06/lies_about_sex.html

    Hoagie (f4eb27)

  242. we have to be more like the cow?

    happyfeet (831175)

  243. How bad could it get without the fixed public official?

    mg (31009b)

  244. “[insert unamusing reference to killing public officials here]!”

    Come the Revolution, we shoot all bureaucrats and hair-dressers.

    nk (dbc370)

  245. Aphrael – do you draw a distinction between the name and the gendered pronouns?

    JD (3b5483)

  246. the new netflix Sense8 show from the wachooskies is all trannied up and it’s got disgusting tranny strap-on sex and me i do not want to watch this when i come home from work and unwind

    i’m all trannied out

    so i bailed after episode two and I’m watching the wayward pines

    it feels very gimmicky so far and Matt Dillon’s zombie makeup is tedious and stupid but it’s fun to see Juliette Lewis

    happyfeet (831175)

  247. If Ralph claimed to be Ben Franklin, and walked around dressed up like Ben Franklin and hung out at the City Tavern in Philly, we would likely be polite to him and call him Ben to his face.
    But we would feel no responsibility or sense of politeness to refer to him other than Ralph to each other, unless Ralph officially had a name change to Ben because he enjoyed the gig and knew that he really wasn’t Ben.
    If Ralph had somehow been consciously convinced he really was in truth Ben, we would say he had a disorder and had no reason to call him anything other than Ralph to each other.

    So it seems to me, whether consciously intended to be or not, it really is a circular argument attempt to say that what Jenner is doing is normal.

    But I don’t think Jenner is acting like Ralph knowing he’s not Ben but just taking the name,
    Jenner is really wanting to take on the identity of Caitlyn;
    which then comes back to the original issue, is transsexualism “normal”

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  248. The creator’s a euro, and he’s a media person. BOTH lean strongly to the left. The intersection of the two even more so.

    If every movie in existence is to be presumed leftist until proven otherwise, then what does the word “left” add to the sentence “the left can put out a movie”? How is it different from “a movie can be made”, and we assume it was by “the left”?

    Strawman, much?

    1) You went from a pair of statistical facts leading to a statistical assertion of generality, and from that derived I somehow was making an absolute statement? You incapacity to reason here, is pretty obvious.
    2) It’s also pretty doubtful to extend from CURRENT movies to “every movie in existence”. Also evidence of poor reasoning capacity.
    3) And you also extend from “Euro” and “Media person” LEANING in one direction to all nations around the world? Because, yes, Lene Riefenstahl was a leftist… LOL. I tell you a third time, your reasoning capacity is highly suspect from this.

    The real question, really, is what the hell is the point of your question/argument/claim/whatever the hell that was?

    “then what does the word “left” add to the sentence “the left can put out a movie”? How is it different from “a movie can be made”, and we assume it was by “the left””

    OK, I’ll play: Strong affirmation that it is, indeed, almost certainly leftist in nature, instead of presumed that way by the above assertions of my own?

    There are lots of movies which don’t particularly expose a leftist point of view or ideology in them. Some do so very much. Anything by Michael Moore, for example. Or most movies involving Tim Robbins, Susan Sarandon, or Martin Sheen. No, not every one of them. Just an above average percentage, and, if a movie of theirs HAS a political bent, it’s almost certainly a leftist-favoring one.

    But in general, the TOPIC of someone having murdered George W Bush while in office is designed to APPEAL to the Bush haters, so is almost certainly NOT being created or promoted by right-leaning writers, producers, and directors.

    This would be like expecting a film about Obama from Dinesh D’Souza would take a left-leaning favoring of the presidential positions.

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  249. I don’t believe in the doctrine of atonement (that Jesus died for our sins, for example)

    Then you aren’t a CHRISTIAN. You are just someone who CALLS yourself a Christian.

    Calling myself a teapot does not make me hold tea for dispensing to others.

    Calling yourself something does not make it so. There is a fundamental reality, which apparently is passing you by because your cranium is stuck in your fundament, instead.

    IGotBupkis, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses." (225d0d)

  250. You are correct, IGotBupkis, and that was exactly Hitchen’s reaction. I’ve met a few British atheists, and I’m amazed at how many of them had Bibles and had read them. While they didn’t believe what the Bible said, they knew it was important to understand it if you were to understand Western
    Civilization. And their own British history.

    So when Hitchens was confronted with this Portlandia Unitarian minister proclaiming what fundamental Christian doctrine she didn’t believe in the hopes of gaining approval for her brand of “Christianity” he had the perfect response. If you don’t believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the Son of God, that he died for the forgiveness of our sins, and was resurrected from the dead, you are not a Christian.

    But I must emphasize I didn’t bring it up in order to make a Biblical argument for or against anything. I only bring up the Bible either when people attempt to use it to advocate for or against a particular policy, or to head off any such attempt. An example of this is on the thread “Why Progressivism Has Won: Even “Conservatives” Can’t Imagine Market Solutions to Problems Any More.”

    Said Kasich:

    In 2013, Kasich lectured a state legislature on God’s interest in his Medicaid expansion. “I…happen to know that you’re a person of faith. Now when you die and get to the meeting with St. Peter, he’s probably not gonna ask you much about what you did about keeping government small, but he’s going to ask you what you did for the poor.”

    See, I don’t much go for the “Biblical case for the Nanny state” or the “Christian case for SSM” or the “Conservative case for wealth redistribution.” Especially because those making the case are anything but Christian or conservative, have only a veneer of knowledge of what they’re talking about, and think they’ve got us all figured out and we’re hypocrites if we don’t got along with their nonsense.

    Hence my comment.

    http://patterico.com/2015/06/12/why-progressivism-has-won-even-conservatives-cant-imagine-market-solutions-to-problems-any-more-2/#comment-1768641


    Luke 18:9-14New International Version (NIV)
    The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector

    9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

    13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

    14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

    Kasich needs to quit the holier-than-thou act and leave God out of public policy…

    I will not be lectured to by know-nothings who try to tell me what my personal convictions must force me to do. Chest thumping Pharisees, praising themselves for their piety like Kasich, do not impress me. As St. Paul, I believe, would have reacted to Kasich’s lecture:

    Romans 14:4

    Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand.

    As I said, I’d rather leave God out of public policy. But so many big government liberals drag God into it (Obama and the Sermon on the Mount, anyone?) that I’m compelled to respond. No, Jesus wasn’t a socialist nor a gay marriage advocate.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  251. But in general, the TOPIC of someone having murdered George W Bush while in office is designed to APPEAL to the Bush haters, so is almost certainly NOT being created or promoted by right-leaning writers, producers, and directors.

    Is the topic of someone having raped a woman designed to APPEAL to misogynists? Are films about rapes not created by people who are against rape? Are films about murders or bank robberies not created by people who are against those crimes? How was this film different? It was about a hypothetical crime and the subsequent investigation, the criminal’s motives, and the validity (or lack thereof) of those motives. Just like dozens of other such movies. There’s no reason to suppose the filmmaker would approve of such a crime, or would wish it to happen.

    Milhouse (a0cc5c)

  252. As I said, I’d rather leave God out of public policy.

    me too let’s make a pinkie promise to leave god out of the public policy

    happyfeet (831175)

  253. You don’t need a pinkie promise from me, Mr. feets. But what I will promise you is when the likes of Kasich or Hillay! throw the Bible at me and assert that I must be for big government, I will use the same Bible to say no I’m not.

    If they don’t bring it up then I won’t.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  254. Click on over there and check out the last ten or so comments. I love potheads.

    nk (dbc370)

  255. Or I see storm clouds on the horizon and I say, “Christians, start your engines.” That sort of thing.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  256. Click on over where, nk? Love you, man, in the most manly way. But you must provide links. Manfully. Just saying.

    Steve57 (48418e)

  257. Kasich looks like ass if he throws the bible at me I’m a say you ugly

    happyfeet (831175)

  258. So the other side of the story is what happens to the commenters. There is a process used on these people. Once their identity is known, they can be referred to political allies. Private reputation management companies and political groups monitor these folks. If they continue to say things that the political parties or powerful individuals don’t like, then they can be put into a program. Essentially, it’s a domestic psychological warfare campaign. They warn these folks, and if they don’t shut up, then they start following them around. The do weird street theater and let them know that their being watched. If they still don’t shut up then they use electronic harassment equipment on them, and they’ll do a character assassination to smear them. They’ll start a noise campaign inside their house to keep them sleep deprived, and pay people to harass them at work. There is an entire group of people who are subject to this treatment. They call themselves “targeted individuals,” and their claims are based in fact. This treatment is a clear violation of the Fourth Amendment and it has a chilling effect on the First Amendment. It’s up to people who are willing to fight for freedom to research this stuff and corroborate the evidence. It’s true, and there are many crimes attached to the process.

    JakeRake (de2271)


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