The Hypocrisy of the Transgender Movement

February 9, 2014

About a year ago I was making observations on the irrationality of the transgender argument and people were asking why I was so focused on it.  It was because I could see the social tide shifting to what I’m seeing today by every media outlet trying to explain why being confused about transgender just makes a person obtuse.  I’m going to try to make this as brief as possible because…well, just because I am deeply befuddled by the whole thing and just don’t want my head to hurt too much as I lay this out.

I am not interested in emotional pleas for “tolerance”.  I don’t have to and won’t tolerate irrationality and when I see it on the verge of legislation I get a little burned up about it especially when I see so much money being wasted by government and our children having to pay the consequences of our ill-conceived economic and social experiments.

The central condition to biological sex assignment is at the chromosomal level:  XX is female while XY is male.  That is a condition that never changes regardless of what surgeries a person may undergo to alter the result of those chromosomes (estrogen, testosterone, vagina, penis, ovaries, testes, breasts, facial hair, etc.).  In fact, hormone therapy is a lifelong requirement for the medical equivalent of a sexual transition.  Lately, there has been a lot of hoopla over transgender people being offended when people refer to them as formerly another gender or, really, make any reference to there having been a change.  Herein lays the first great hypocrisy.  Transgender is by its very definition a change.  Deal with it.  That means when a person goes a show about being a trailblazing transgender model he/she ought to be prepared to answer some questions about the trans part because without it there’s probably nothing particularly exceptional about yet another model.

An argument often thrust into the spotlight lately is that reducing sexual assignment to mere boy and girl parts is objectifying.  Well…yeah.  Assignment is identified at the biological level by “objects” and the most fundamental of them is microscopic and unchangeable.  In fact, the subject is so object-centric transgender people go through lengthy and difficult procedures attempting to modify those objects.  Therein lays the second hypocrisy.  If focusing on “the parts” is so superficial and objectifying, then what does that say about spending hundreds of thousands of dollars over a lifetime on what amounts to plastic surgery to change the appearance of those parts?

There is where I want to stop the discussion.  What more needs to be said?  You are biologically male or female (with a few androgynous exceptions) and that’s that.   

Obviously, that is not enough for the transgender community.  Now we must talk about what it means to “identify” as male and female.  Here is where my blood starts to boil.  Rather than delving into each silly argument that is being heaped upon us by the media lately, let me ask a very simple question: 

What defines male and female beyond the objects?

It shouldn’t take much thinking to realize that within that question are layers upon layers of nothing but stereotypes.  So, when a male says he identifies as a female or a female says she identifies as a male what exactly are the rest of us supposed to celebrate there?  Please, tell us what the criteria is you used to determine that you are a woman without going into a diatribe of shallow generalities.

Please explain to us how you have ACCEPTED AND DEVELOPED YOUR OWN IDENTITY rather than having simply conformed to what you perceive as society’s standards.  Then we’re told to accept that if you “feel” like a woman you should look like a woman.  Obviously, there wasn’t much thought put into what “feeling” like a woman actually means, so when expressing that feeling becomes wearing a dress, purse, and high heels I am deeply perplexed as to how women- feminists in particular- aren’t outraged at the shallowness of it all.

What the hell do you mean you “feel like a woman”?  Are you growing up with the sexual stigmas?  Are you facing puberty and the confusion of menstruation?  Are you shaping your decisions in life around the possibility that you could become pregnant?  Am I missing anything else that might actually qualify someone to “feel like a woman”?  Beyond this, what else is there that someone should be able to say that qualifies them as a woman when they are, in fact, a man or vice versa?  I’d love to hear it.

I’d love to hear it because my final point addresses the argument that gender identity is simply an individual choice.  Well, that’s great except the unspoken reality of the agenda as it is presented is that gender identity is simply the choice of transgender people.  Everyone else is obviously just conforming to biological assignment.  If gender identity were truly just an individual choice and all standards be damned, then that choice is as much in the person identifying with a gender as it is in a person observing the gender.  In other words, if you can selectively apply standards to determine your gender, then I can selectively apply standards to determine your gender.  Fair is fair.  And herein lays the third hypocrisy when the transgender community pushes for legislation calling it discrimination when someone refuses to recognize a transgender female as a female.

Live your life and let me live mine and stop being so damned irrationally sensitive when we come together.

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Failure On the Syrian Struggle

August 26, 2013

The U.N. has weapons. It has armored vehicles. It has chemical protective gear. It has international backing. It has everything it needs to conduct immediate investigations in hostile regions except one thing: COURAGE. If the U.N. were truly concerned with addressing a humanitarian crisis and getting to the bottom of who is responsible for a chemical attack, then nothing would have prevented investigators from entering the region and demanding Assad immediately cease hostilities in the area of the alleged attack lest he provoke international aggression. Instead, inspectors sit in a hotel for nearly a week while Assad pummels the area with artillery following the chemical attack; nearly a week to eliminate evidence; nearly a week to promise complete destruction of the area if locals cooperate. As it is, what is known about the area has already been gathered by “international sources”. Great job doing nothing, U.N. while children were convulsing to death and I certainly haven’t forgotten Obama’s “red line” bluster a year ago.

So what to do now that Assad has agreed to let U.N. inspectors in to conduct an investigation for the latest and most deadly attack. History says a lot:

Per a CNN article regarding two previous chemical incidents:

***

“Each side in Syria’s two-year-old conflict has accused the other of using chemical weapons – an action that which would constitute a war crime under international law. Two of the alleged attacks took place in Aleppo in March and Homs in December.

An investigation looking specifically into claims of chemical weapons use in Syria was ordered by the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, in late March. The Syrian government wants the UN team to investigate only the Aleppo attack, but the UN has insisted that the inquiry cover both incidents.

An official involved with the investigation into chemical weapons in Syria use told The Independent yesterday that a two-person advance team was waiting in Cyprus to enter Syria and perform onsite inspections. But nearly six weeks after Syria initially asked for such an inquiry, investigators have been unable to enter the country.

“The Syrian government wants an inspection of just one site in Aleppo, we have asked for inspections for two places,” the official said.

***

It took 6 weeks for Assad to stop obstructing inspectors on an investigation MONTHS after the incidents. It doesn’t take a leap of imagination to figure out why considering the result.

Consequently, egg ended up in the face of Western nations who were openly appalled at the apparent government use of chemical weapons when the U.N. report concluded that there was “no definitive link” to a Syrian government sponsored chemical attack and that rebel forces “may have” done the attack.  COMPLETELY INCONCLUSIVE!  How is this determination any different from simply not having done an investigation at all? I mean, aside from being able to word the report in such a manner as to protect Russian interests at the expense of Syrian lives.  Then again, exactly what was the world seriously expecting to determine A WHOLE YEAR after the first “unacceptabe” event???

So, who do we hold accountable for this humanitarian failure?  We American citizens can do little with respect to the U.N., but we can certainly look with disgust upon our own leaders who have demonstrated no effective leadership in the matter. They should have pressured the U.N. for immediate results. They should have pressured Assad in all instances of chemical attacks and demanded IMMEDIATE cooperation. They should have, but didn’t and now we have a third incident with chemical weapons that is being dragged out for so long it will likely end up “inconclusive” yet again despite hundreds if not thousand of deaths.

The U.S. is now trying to take the high road by rejecting Assad’s belated cooperation in this latest incident, which is raising eybrows among conspiracy theorists and critics of our foreign policy. Unfortunately, based on U.S. inconsistencies unrelated and directly related to Syria, both groups are very justified in questioning our resolve and motives in this matter. After all we have done wrong the past decade, we had an opportunity to do the right thing for the right reasons and failed miserably while even repeating past mistakes (see Saddam Hussein’s record with U.N. inspections). Obama has new blood on his hands and he can’t blame anyone else for it especially when we consider the former state senator had a very pointed opinion regarding another leader with an affinity for chemical weapons:

“Now let me be clear — I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein.  He is a brutal man.  A ruthless man.  A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power.  He has repeatedly defied UN resolutions, thwarted UN inspection teams, developed chemical and biological weapons, and coveted nuclear capacity.  He’s a bad guy.  The world, and the Iraqi people, would be better off without him.”  State Senator Barrack Hussein Obama, October 2, 2002

In spite of his “crossing a red line” comment regarding any chemical weapons use by the Syrian government, Obama followed up his 2002 remark with the following:

“But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors, that the Iraqi economy is in shambles, that the Iraqi military a fraction of its former strength, and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history.”

So, it turns out there is substantial reason to doubt the credibility of any red line from this administration.

Despite this, we must support action that is correct and stumble forward with aggressive investigations and a consistent position to depose any government that is found to have used chemical weapons. It’s better to be criticized for being late than to suffer the sins of inaction. I just hope it involves a lot more than a mere “two-person advance team”. It is LONG past time for Obama to earn some aspect of his Nobel Peace Prize. There is no excuse for any more videos of children suffocating violently to death if international war laws have any meaning at all in our bumbling quest for world peace.

*DIsclaimer Edit:  I have found that the the quote of President Barrack Obama in 2002 has no complete primary source.  However, both liberal and conservative web sites have quoted the speech as I have linked one of each.  Either way, we dealing with a mess that we helped create.  Until Obama specifically rejects that he made this speech which had been used by independent groups as campaign material I feel comfortable attributing it to him with this note.

 


The Obama Economic Lie

August 11, 2012

Being as many people simply don’t have the time or necessarily the inclination to look up boring financial information and statistics, I figured I’d take the time to prove a very bold lie by the Obama administration and Obama himself in a short essay.  I don’t use the term “lie” in politics often, but the misinformation is so blatant there can be no other conclusion.

Recently, Obama said in a campaign speech in Pueblo, CO: “I believe in American workers, I believe in this American industry, and now the American auto industry has come roaring back. Now I want to do the same thing with manufacturing jobs, not just in the auto industry, but in every industry.”  First of all, Obama is openly declaring the intent to commit potentially trillions of additional public dollars to “save” private business, which is belief in nothing but himself.  There are countless political consequences inherent to this authoritarian policy.  Suffice it to say that the mere fact the GM CEO had to step down in order to receive bailouts and GM was ordered to be acquired by FIAT demonstrates the unspeakably broad power this policy generates for the federal government.  Government has no business running business.

Still, this is about Obama’s lie, so let’s get to the point and review the actual facts surrounding the apparently amazing success of the bailouts to support a limitless expansion of them.  First, Detroit’s unemployment rate is currently at 17.8% after a recent decline from 18.8% and it is expected to rise again due to more city employment layoffs.  Already, Obama’s claims are suspicious, but the entire city was negatively affected by the auto industry decline, so city-wide unemployment may not be a fair measure of success and Obama did specifically say “auto industry”.  A look at the auto industry’s recovery shows a dramatically different picture from Obama’s lie.  According to truth-out.org and iBisWorld the net auto jobs recovered (hardly “created” or “saved” since the jobs were lost) since the beginning of the recession is less than half.  In addition, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics the average hourly rate for an auto worker DECLINED to $21.56 in June 2012 from $22.33 in June 2008 at the peak of the recession.  The BLS also reports that benefits paid out by the auto industry has declined.  Some might sensibly argue that such declines were necessary to correct a bloated compensation package, but that is not what Obama is selling and since the auto industry was already facing such cutbacks why did we need billions to “save” two major players in the industry that ultimately went bankrupt anyway? It’s a lie.

To add insult to injury, GM still…STILL has not paid back its loan from the government.  STILL!!!  The 500 million shares of GM our brilliant administration purchased at $54 per share is currently worth less than half.

So, where is this recovery Obama keeps bragging about?  It doesn’t exist.  It’s a lie that has cost this country more debt than all presidents combined accrued before Obama such that it now a national debt that exceeds our GDP for the first time in our history (despite Obama’s promise to cut the deficit in half) and declined our credit rating for the first time in history and shaken the world’s confidence in the dollar for the first time in history and caused over 8% unemployment for the longest period since the Great Depression (despite Obama’s promise to prevent unemployment from even reaching 8%) and on and on and on.

Come to think of it, Obama has a lot of accomplishments, but few that are worth even the empty promise of hope.


Huntsman Daughters’ Distasteful Activities

January 11, 2012

This will easily be my shortest post yet since The End Run has done some brilliant investigative reporting.  Apparently, a distasteful video that has received considerable attention as being attributed to Ron Paul supporters is likely to have been created by the oldest daughters of Jon Huntsman.  After reviewing the evidence it’s difficult to come to any other conclusion and is a disgusting turn of events in this race.  The following link will take you to the report:

http://www.theendrun.com/huntsman-complicit-in-false-flag-style-dirty-trick-against-paul


Paul and Huntsman trump Trump

December 3, 2011
Jon Huntsman and Ron Paul have officially refused to participate in the Donald Trump moderated circus that will be one of the last Republican debates before the Iowa primaries (a critical opportunity for exposure under normal circumstances). Ron Paul’s camp eloquently and bitingly provide justification for their decision. The GOP is going down in flames and so far only these two Republican presidential candidates stand firmly above the mess as true statesmen.

 

 


When Math Meets Hope

September 9, 2011

President Obama has laid out his latest and greatest job saving plan that is sure to be even better than the last two.  Part of that plan is an extension and expansion of the current payroll tax cuts which will divert around $240B from the Social Security Trust fund into his $450B proposal.

An obvious question is whether or not the Social Security Trust Fund is an appropriate source of funding.  The short answer is no…hell no, but these are tax cuts not actual borrowing, right?  That’s the first failure in this predictably vague proposal.  The cuts are speculative in that nobody has seen an actual bill. They are gleened purely from the weakly worded but wonderfully delivered speech.  Still, let’s assume they are as predicted.

Social Security is running about $50B in the hole and is projected to level off around $20B in the red in 2012 before it goes on a terminal dive in 2015 that ends in 2036 according to the Social Security Administration Board of Trustee Report of May 2011.  The report includes projections that take into account the new Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) and also cites concerns with the viability and projections of ObamaCare (see the second to last paragraph of the summary).  So, even WITH the added magic of the $1T ObamaCare package, the SSA Trustees have downgraded the insolvency of Social Security from 2037 to 2036 and Medicare is in even worse shape.  Funny how this does not make headlines.

Let’s do some simple math and see if President Obama has finaly taken the walk into La-La land.  Social Security is going to average around $30B in red spending until 2015 before diving even further into an ever increasing annual deficit.  If we add $240B to that right off the bat we get…oh yeah, MUCH WORSE!  I can’t wait to see the Trustee’s report in 2012.  It should go something like, “Why do we even bother?”

Before any of you go into a tizzy about how Social Security has a $2.6T surplus I am already aware of it as detailed by a Huffington Post letter provided by former Democrat  Senator Don Riegle who, incidentally, was formally reprimanded during his last term for “substantially and improperly interfering” with an investigation against a financial institution that cost the government over $3B when it collapsed.  Not exactly a fiscal genius.

That the $2.6T surplus has been borrowed by the government to offset its $13T deficit is a universally accepted fact.  What Mr. Riegle proposes, though, is that the loan is in such good faith that when Social Security needs to collect on it there will simply be a check written from the government…for itself…plus interest.  In fact the Board of Trustees believe the same thing in their report.  The burning question is:  If indebtedness to Social Security (once hailed as self sustaining thus unrelated to deficit spending) is now calculated as part of the national debt, then how can that money actually be paid back…PLUS INTEREST while we are in a deficit???  That’s like seriously saying you can be broke one month, but loan yourself money for your mortgage payment after borrowing money from other people for the rest of your bills, then pay yourself back in twenty years during which your budget is expected to get worse…PLUS COLLECT INTEREST!!!

What is not so universally accepted in the letter (but is gobbled up by SSA proponents galore) highlights typical agenda driven selective reasoning.  Mr. Riegle properly cites a 2010 SSA Board of Trustee report that details a surplus in funds forever and ever.  However, Mr. Riegle provides a graph that I have not found in the report.  Furthermore, the graph appears to be compiled from data in a table on page 194 of the report.  More specifically, the data is from the column representing “Low-Cost” projections which most certainly shows increasing surplus that seem to carry on without end.  Here’s the catch:  On page 7 of the report there are 3 “alternatives” for predicting the performance of the Social Security Trust Fund:  Intermediate, Low-cost, and High-Cost.  Intermediate is based on current information and trends (and is the one that predicts insolvency by 2036) while Low-Cost and High-Cost assume best case and worse case scenarios.  The table shows all three outcomes.  Mr. Riegle conveniently uses the Low-Cost, or “Best Case”, scenario to support his claim that Social Security is simply not in trouble and does not disclose that bit of information.  It is the only prediction that shows a sustainable surplus.

BTW, here’s a CBO report that shows transfers from the General Fund into Social Security through 2020.  They are called Intergovernmental Transfers to Trust Funds.  Even by 2020 they do not even closely match what is being loaned.  Also, Medicare has been and is projected to continue running increasingly in the red, which offsets the annual increases of the Transfers that might actually make a difference if we were just talking about Social Security.  This shows that Medicare is an inseparable problem with Social Security that is like an anchor that weighs more than the ship.  If I read the SSA Trustee report correctly ObamaCare is expected to create only a 25% improvement in Medicare fund performance (through decreased payment schedules for medical care) over a finite period of time.  Again, the projected decline in Medicare includes whatever benefits are assumed from ObamaCare.

I don’t think anyone with any economic sense believes best case scenarios are ever the ones to base economic policy on.  That is, of course, unless you campaign on “Hope”.  Welcome to La-La land.


A Musing On Killing

August 12, 2011

     Several months ago, I heard an interesting take on being a Soldier that is probably well known, but I hadn’t heard it before. Maybe I never bothered to pay attention until now. Basically, it’s the observation that what sets a Soldier apart from the average person is not that he is willing to die for is country. Anyone can do that. What makes a Soldier unique is that he is willing to kill for his country. Take a moment to ponder that. I’ve been doing it ever since I heard it and figure only now I could intelligently write on it.

     On the surface, this makes us look like glorified monsters. Somehow, we are stable enough to mingle with society, but we are messed up in the head enough that, given a simple set of circumstances, we would violently end another person’s life. There are layers of philosophical meadows to wander in with this discussion. What of the concept of patriotism, of defense of one’s family, or of the protection of a society’s ideals? All of that is interesting, but apparent clutter in the grand scheme of things. The cycle of life does not concern itself with politics, or bloodlines, or such subjective notions as religion. Life simply is or it isn’t and the general default human position is that it should be protected at all costs.

Consider the following marching cadence taught to us in Basic Training:

 

One and one

We’re havin’ some fun

Killin’ commies, commies

All day, all day

And all through the night

Hey, Hey!

 

Two and two

I’ll do it for you

(last 4 lines repeat with every verse)

 

Three and three

I’ll do it for free

 

Four and four

I’ll do it some more

 

Five and five

They won’t stay alive

 

Six and Six

I do it for kicks

 

Seven and seven

They won’t go to heaven

 

Eight and eight

Now don’t it feel great

 

Nine and nine

With gun or landmine

 

Ten and ten

Let’s do it again

(These days we say “terrorists” instead of “commies”)

 

     Freaky, right? By the day-to-day standards of society we are celebrating murder! How could we be so sociopathic?

     Having asked the question, there doesn’t seem to be a good direct response. “It’s not sociopathic” is simply not adequate. Life has two extremes with practically no transition (“brain-dead” might be the only example). As Soldiers, we are trained and paid to instantly arrange the extreme that is diametrically opposed to our regard for life.

Allow me to diverge for a moment…

     I spoke with a captain in the Air Force at the DFAC today. He was an A-10 pilot and our conversation started with how boring we thought the game of cricket that was being broadcast seemed to be. We talked about what each other did and I mentioned that I was in the unit that had lost two members in the chinook RPG assault. He expressed his condolences and I remarked that at least the attackers were found and killed. We both celebrated that fact. We talked for a few more minutes as we walked out of the DFAC. The rise in violence during Ramadan became the topic of discussion. As we parted he mentioned that he had killed two insurgents the day before.

     That last remark caused me a moment of pause (though I instantly said, “All right!”). Casually, though with obvious pride, this guy just stated to me that he recently and deliberately killed two people- perhaps less than 24 hours before I met him. An A-10 pilot probably does not leave much intact of his targets.

Back to the question at hand about being sociopathic.

     Clearly, we are cognisant that our existence is philosophically much more than just life and death. If that were not the case than we would be no better off than an amoeba. Though life itself is indifferent to human endeavors, the vast majority of us believe there is much more that we have relatively little comprehension of, but a strong sense for. Such things as peace, justice, balance, and the very notion of God challenge the strictly on or off nature of life. These aspects of our consciousness are not just random, irrational clutter. They are the very color of and, we hope at least, clues to the meaning of our existence.

     So passionate are we about these notions that we consider them our very identity. Both as individuals and as communities we see ourselves as much more than just another piece in the mechanism of life. We are part of the consciousness that moves it. As such, we perceive a responsibility to protect what we have determined to be the aspects that best contribute to that movement through the symbiosis of peace, justice, balance, and God.

     Though we as individuals have our own understanding of these aspects, we find commonalities as societies and identify ourselves through friendships, laws, and spirituality. Anything that threatens the aspects we have established to represent our society threatens the society as a whole. Often such threats are only perceived through ignorance, but there are those times when society determines the threat to be direct and real and mobilizes its defenses to protect itself. Thus, we find ourselves looking at life not just as an individual endowment, but also as a collective phenomenon. At this point we find that society determines the value of eliminating the threat to be in some way proportional to the life it threatens with relatively little regard to individual loss.

     Soldiers do not determine that value, save for the occasional coup (a very dangerous situation as this essay inadvertently highlights). As a volunteer Army, we are among those who have embraced the aspects of our society to such an extent that we present ourselves as defenders of it. We have accepted the value of the collective and pledge to preserve it in the manner consistent with the wishes of our society. If society determines that war and the death we must inflict in it is the best course of action, then we accept that it is correct and worthy of setting aside our initial notions of life for a larger purpose. We pledge not to question it and to commit to action.

     For this, we as Soldiers accept that our cause is good and our actions are just. I realized after a few moments of pondering that the reason I paused on the pilot’s comment was because I did not know the circumstances around which two people died by his hand. Such is the way our society is wired through its values. We default to our basic notion of life and the value we place on it. After a while, I concluded that I had no place to even falter on the justness of his killing. That had already been done when society sent him to war.

     So, if we are to question the mental stability of a Soldier who is willing to kill we would more effectively spend our time questioning the stability of the society that sent him on his task. It all boils down to faith. Faith in our values, faith in the strength of our society, and faith in the fidelity of our Soldiers’ commitment to our society and everything it represents. Such faith does not and should not come lightly. So long as Soldiers commit to fight honorably for what is believed to be the greater good that they are sent to defend, then they certainly do set themselves apart for they are the warrior ambassadors to something valued more than themselves.