Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Father has left the Building.

Updated. See at end.

The devastation, cruelty and evil around us in the Hilary villages of the western world are catching up with the eastern varieties. As yet Britain has seen only one beheading in the street,** but more are sure to come. Sadness and gloom descended on the Tavern this week and much needed Grace flowed.

** More has come, unfortunately. See the additional piece at the end of this post.

Amid the horrors being seen in the Muslim controlled middle east we are suddenly made aware of horrors by muslims in an otherwise modest northern town in England. And we cry against that demonic creed. 

Motes and Beams. Don't forget them.
Judge: as you would be judged.

But is it just that creed that we must fight?

Let’s start with a riddle. If South Yorkshire Police can mount a raid on Sir Cliff Richard’s home in pursuit of evidence linked to a single allegation of child sex abuse 30 years ago, why were South Yorkshire Police incapable of pursuing multiple allegations against multiple men who raped 1,400 children over 16 years?

One thousand four hundred. 

Consider the weight of that number, feel its tragic heft. 

Picture 50 junior-school classes of little girls in Rotherham, once a respectable northern town, now a byword for depravity. We have seen child-grooming cases before, but the disgusting stories revealed in the report by Professor Alexis Jay amount to evidence of abuse on an industrial scale.

And almost overlooked is the plain fact, plain as the nose on your face or the emprty armchair where dad used to sit, is that those girls were mostly 'in care'. 

In Care. 

What a comforting phrase. It is the euphemism for socialism. 

Nurturing, tender, empathetic. Female. 

The false face of socialism.

The woman who presided over the last five years of failure as the boss of children’s services at Rotherham Council is the same executive who removed three children from their foster parents because they were Ukip voters.  

Joyce Thacker, the £130,000-a-year Strategic Director of Children’s Services at the scandal-hit council, is among the senior managers who are now under pressure to resign following the “excoriating” report into child sexual exploitation in the town.

Is this the face of Motherly love?

And what has socialism wrought in its effort to create the famous Hilary Clinton phrase 'it takes a village to raise a child' ? Behold our zozchial zervizes.

No Father allowed in Hilary's Village.
Certainly not our Father Almighty.

Herbert Purdy stopped by for a pint and stopped everyone from drinking for five minutes. He read the riot act and pointed to the nub of the problem that has existed well before the 'muslim' issue and has paved the path for the horrors that have ensued.

This last week has seen an outpouring of vitriol and venom against those who were in charge in Rotherham council, its social services and the police during the period when it is reported that at least 1,400 children were sexually exploited whilst in the care of the local authority between 1997 and 2013. (The independent report can be downloaded here).

The outcry, which has amounted to a 

societal shriek, 

has echoed around the media echo-chamber, gaining momentum in a classic feedback loop. It has even spread to the other side of the globe with calls for Sonia Sharp, the former Rotherham children’s services director, now in Australia, to resign from her current job over the scandal.

Ms Sharp’s response was that she wished she had been able to do more to prevent the abuse.

Like many people, I don’t generally hold a banner aloft praising the work of social services and social workers. Indeed, like many, 

I hold them collectively in a degree of distrust, if not contempt, 

at some of their antics in interfering with the family. 

In this case, however, what Ms Sharp said rang a bell in me: a resonance with something much deeper in what this is all about.

First of all, let us get out of the way that the victims were almost exclusively white girls, and the offenders were almost exclusively men of Asian, mainly Pakistani, ethnic origin, at least as it appears from the report. 

People can rage about the cultural attitudes of men such as these towards women in general, and white women in particular. People can rage and allege racialism, sexism, whatever. 

These arguments have all been well rehearsed this last week, particularly by feminists and their fellow-travellers.

What took place in Rotherham was wrong. Irrespective of whether you see cultural misogyny at play or any other stereotype, even in the girls themselves, what those men did is deeply, deeply wrong. They need to be caught and punished and I hope they are quaking in their shoes at what is bound to be a righteous crusade by the local police to find them and bring them to trial.

It is also wrong that many of the girls were labelled by the police and others as ‘undesirables’ and not worthy of police protection. However, according to the independent report, these girls were players in the entire thing.   

Julie Bindel, a lesbian radical feminist, apparently had written in the Guardian in May 2008, saying ‘It emerged that the girls had been swapping sex for food, cigarettes and affection.’ (Bindel, of course, was making a sexist case against men and their attitudes to women, but she was also revealing something that speaks against the very ideology of which she is a high-priestess.)

The point I want to draw is that these young women and girls were in local authority care, and, by some accounts, they were leaving their care accommodation during the night, at the behest of the beasts who had groomed them, and were calling their care homes the next morning asking for a taxi to be sent to pick them up from wherever they had been. 

The staff there, of course, had no choice but to do what they could to bring them back ‘home’.

And this was not just an occasional business. It was commonplace according to one commentator on BBC radio during the week. My view is,

These girls were ‘in care’ but they were neither being cared for, nor cared about. 

I can well understand Sonia Sharp’s comment, that she wished she had been able to do more to prevent the abuse.  But how could she? How could anybody?

These girls were well off the rails: the victims not only of the vile men who abused them, but of their own immaturity and vulnerability – and, more importantly, 

victims of the very society that is in uproar about it all. 

The bottom line here is that these girls were fair game for predatory men because there was nobody to protect them – even from themselves.

Society has disposed of the very people who could have done something about it – their fathers. 

Where were the fathers in all of this?  We talk about these girls being the victims of predatory men, but they are even more the victims of a society that destroys fathers and their patriarchal role in the protection of their daughters.

Obviously I cannot comment about the specifics of individual cases, but it is obvious that if girls are ‘in care’, it means they don’t have a functional family to care for them – and by that I mean a family with a father and a mother: where the mother makes the rules for her daughter, and the father enforces them, by mutual consent. That is how whole families work. Children in care do not have this, so they are at risk of going off the rails.

Single families, which really means fatherless families, can’t possible function as a family should. 

Yet this arrangement is rapidly becoming the norm, such is the degree to which fatherhood has been destroyed – by a society that has embraced feminism with such alacrity, in the name of a false form of so-called equality.

I have said it many times, and even at the risk of sounding like a recored stuck in its groove, I have no compunction in saying it again, in 1970, when all this kicked off, Germaine Greer said,

‘Women’s liberation, if it abolishes the patriarchal family, will abolish a necessary substructure of the authoritarian state, and once that withers away Marx will have come true, willy nilly, so let’s get on with it.’ (The Female Eunuch ‘Revolution’ 1970)
Her filth has born bastard fruit.

Women’s liberation aka feminism, aka Marxism, has abolished the patriarchal family – and with it the rule of authority – especially in the family, but also of the state that is needed to constrain the lusts of men such as this. 

What the Marxist feminist Greer said has all come about.

Feminists like her have relentlessly attacked patriarchy in order to liberate women from the protective rule of their fathers. 

That is what the feminist fight is all about.

The patriarchal family is the family in which the father’s rule has sway. That is the meaning of the word – the ‘patri’ part means ‘father’, not man. It is the word for father that goes back as far as Indian Sanskrit. And the ‘archy’ part comes from the Greek word archon meaning power, rule or force.

In just 45 years or so, feminism has brought down the family. 

Feminists have achieved Greer’s aim of liberation of women, but they have  released a genie out of a bottle. The truth is, those women ‘liberated’ other women and girls from their fathers, and their father’s patriarchal protection, and the damage they have caused for girls, let alone boys (although that is another story – another iniquity) is incalculable.

And they are still around today, plying their angry, rebellious creed. Harriet Harman for example who in 1990 co-authored the report ‘The Family Way’ in which she said,

‘It cannot be assumed that men are bound to be an asset to family life or that the presence of fathers in families is necessarily a means to social cohesion.’
Stone face: stone heart. The Princess of Lies weilding Zozchialist Power.

These views have turned into reality, and the general populace haven’t even realised their import.

Is anyone going to tell me that if these abused kids in Rotherham had had a father in their lives, able to exercise authority under a generally understood rule, indeed an expectation, that he had a right to do so, some of them (maybe many of them, or even all of them) might have escaped the exploitation and abuse which the evil men, acting like little more than animals, engaged in?

What father would not have wanted to protect a daughter from men like these? 

What father whose daughter was going off the rails would not want to drag her back home, and keep her there until she realised how much he loved her and wanted to protect her from the wiles and ways of low-life men - ways he knows only too well, not because he is like that, but simply because he is a man and understands what dangers stalk the world?

Sure, daughters rebel against their fathers. They need to, because it is part of their own development as future adults. They are practicing independence and agency – that responsibility for one’s own actions as a full citizen equal under the law that everyone is presumed to have. 

Children need to break free and become autonomous, and there comes a time in their relationship with their parents when they kick over the traces. Often that takes the form of challenging the father’s rule when the time is right.

This is part of the maturing process toward adulthood. (And, incidentally, it is a process, it doesn’t just happen at age sixteen, or eighteen, or twenty-one, depending on the legal regime of the country. It is nonsense to think that many of these girls, particularly the older ones, did not have a degree of agency, albeit immature. 

To see them purely as victims without agency is too ridiculous for words, and doesn’t help.)

It is true that some fathers have the most extreme difficulty in coping with their daughter’s rebelliousness. It is true that many fathers are too heavy-handed. They are human and flawed. Some fathers – all too many these days – are ineffectual as a result of the denigration of manhood that is so rife today. In an age when young women are constantly told they are not under the rule or domination of men, how can a father exercise his protective role?

Many men just give up. 

Many more cave in to it all. 

Especially when they realise they have no mandate from society to protect their children; when they know they can be challenged and charged with all manner of domestic violence offences by a state that, even now, is seeking more power to intrude into the home, criminalising domestic behaviour as abuse.

Even more fathers are taken out of the equation altogether by the family courts of the very state to which they pay taxes, that routinely create single-mother families (and often mothers who can’t cope with having to assume the father’s role as well as the mother’s). 

If you treat fathers as a cash machines with no rights, but assign to them onerous financial responsibilities from which they cannot escape, what do you expect?

The truth is, all the clamour and opinionating about the Rotherham scandal apart, there is a much deeper issue at play that no one seems to have spotted:

Girls need fathers. 

Boys need fathers. 

Families need fathers.


You can go on as much as you like criticising people in public office who, perhaps, should have done a better job. Who in this world could not do a better job of what they do?

Some of them may have been negligent, that is for others to judge.

However, one of the greatest offences a society can commit against its public servants is to give them heavy responsibility without also giving them the power to discharge that responsibility – and it is asking the impossible to require public servants to care for children in a state system that creates so many fatherless (and, in this case, motherless) children.

The state cannot care for children. Only parents can.
It is about time the state woke up to this fundamental truth and started supporting and encouraging the conventional family, rather than destroying it.
       Rotherham: Girls need fathers. Hello?

Herbert sat down.

We charged our glasses.

Dear God, the Father Almighty, forgive us our trespasses.

As a man in the middle east shrieks as his head is hacked off by a demonic mulsim, so does society shriek when a man is cut off from the Family and God the Father is denied.



I wrote above at  the opening: "As yet Britain has seen only one beheading in the street, but more are sure to come".  The beheading of the young soldier in the street last year was horrendous and carried out by a crazy Islamist. 

Today another happened. The police reaction was in practical terms, exemplary, but their comments were unfortunate. 

No 'beheadings' have occurred in Britain since the middle ages and here, within a year we have two. Do not tell me this second is mearly a 'copy-cat'. Even if it eventuates that it is just a lunatic and not an Islamist' the murderer got the idea from Islamist behaviour.

Woman reportedly beheaded with machete, cops rule out terrorism


Thursday, August 28, 2014

University Challenge - USA

It takes me back a while seeing University Challenge after all these years. It is the UK 'Intellectual' series where 4 'person' teams from Universities compete for the honour of well... simply beating all the others.  I catch the odd one or two as customers have been known to show them on the TV in the UK Room.

Lots of difficult questions are asked by an affable host, starting with the famous phrase, "here's your Starter for 10..." (points that is).

The host is Jeremy Paxman, a well known TV personality and political interviewer in the UK, where it used to be Wossisname - Bamber Gascoigne  - an altogether more suitable name  for a British academic I think. The teams have broadened in country of origin over the years reflecting the multiculti-ism so popular in universities and what were English towns today, and have even included some Americans. 

All terribly, terribly clever chaps. 
A fine array of English names to savour.

Trinity College, Cambridge Captained by classicist Ralph Morley won the final of this year’s University Challenge with eventual ease, beating Somerville College, Oxford by 240 points to 135. This is the fifth time in 20 years that Cambridge have won the prize. No doubt Oxford will politely remind them of the fact that they have won the trophy seven times in that same period.

And here's your host, Jeremy Paxton. Paxman? 
Well, Wossisname.

I do not know if the USA has a similar programme. But if they do not, perhaps they should. 

And I know just the Univerity to start the ball rolling.

The University of Denver.  It likes giving out prizes. It's Chancellor, one Rebecca Chopp (splendid name for someone so eager to fail students) should be on the first team, and perhaps all by herself. 

The subject matter could be her very own University, just to make things easy. And she doesn't need any team to compete against as that would put her in danger of losing.  We cannot have 'empowered' womyn like Rebecca being within a bull's roar of being defeated, can we. That would be sexist. Yea, even unto misogynistic.

We have a question Master. Howard Goldman. American too. He was in the bar today outlining the questions he would like to ask. He even wrote them down and sent them for her to 'look up'. 

Dr. Rebecca Chopp, chancellor at the University of Denver, took her position there in mid-2014. Before this she was President of Swarthmore College, and is named nineteen times in a January 2014 lawsuit by John Doe alleging he was wrongly expelled three months before his senior year after being falsely accused of sexual assault.

Prior to the filing of his lawsuit John Doe appealed to President Chopp, claiming that the university did not even follow its own rules when they found him guilty. 

President Chopp denied him even the chance to voice these concerns via appeal.

Now the chancellor at Denver U, she is called upon again to address gender equity. Howard says she has also ignored his concerns and not responded to him in the three weeks since his email. Perhaps being on the TV with an audience and a chance to get a prize will persuade her to answer.

Chancellor Chopp. Rebecca to her friends. If she has any.

Here's what Howard had to say, politely:

How do you do Ms. Chopp?  I came across your university’s webpage while browsing for colleges for my children. I have 2 daughters and a son. I noticed a few things that concern me and would certainly affect my decision of choice of school for my children.   

Some of these concerns result from the page on the website that is devoted to the annual women’s conference and the Robin Morgan Award.
The first thing that I noticed is that your university presents an annual award to a female staff member who goes beyond her job responsibilities. The women’s conference webpage states that this staff member should also enhance the concerns of women. There are several issues that concern me with this award.
Look. A Girl Tree !
Who knew girls grew on trees?

Here we all shouted, "Here's your starter for Ten, Chancellor Chopp." 

1. Why are male staff who go beyond their job responsibilities denied the opportunity to receive an award for doing so? Isn’t that sexism where an award is presented based solely on gender? Has there ever been an equivalent conference for men?
Notice the 'bonus points' questions before she has even answered the starter? What a fair chap Howard is. 

2. Why is there no recognition for a staff member that would enhance the concerns of men?   
More bonus questions here: 

Are the concerns of men on campus ever addressed or promoted?  Does DU even consider that men on campus would have any concerns? If so, why then are there no awards for staff that address them?
One concern I note is the enrollment and graduation rates based on gender. Statistics show an undergraduate 45% enrollment for men and just a 41% enrollment for men in graduate school. 

Graduation rates show that just about 40% of graduates are male for bachelors and masters degrees while an even lower rate for doctorates where only 1/3 are male.
With these kinds of rates, why does DU cater only to recognizing those that further the advocacy for women? 

Perhaps if DU would advocate for male issues and concerns, more men might feel welcomed to enroll in your school.
3. Your WAND (Women’s staff Alliance for Networking and Development) webpage is also a bit of a concern.  The page states: “WAND is an organization committed to helping staff women at the University of Denver achieve their highest potential as employees by means of advocacy, education, development and leadership.”
Does this mean that male staff have no such program to help them achieve their highest potential via education, development and leadership?   

Are male staff sub-par to female staff due to the void of their education and development opportunities?
4. My last and biggest concern is the Robin Morgan Award. 

This award is named after the former Ms. Magazine editor. The award is bestowed upon female staff that are exemplary in their duties.
The nice-lady looking Robin Morgan. In reality a

Now we all know that the Ms.Magazine is the premier mouthpiece for feminism. And we all know that feminism is all sweetness and light, empathy, nurturing, conflict resolving, and it seeks eeekwalleteee. We can be pretty confident that Mz Morgan is a first class feminist. A lady we should listen to.

Robin Morgan has made some statements that in my opinion are rather disturbing and I ask why your university would name this award after her. By naming this award after Robin Morgan, DU is lauding and praising this woman’s thoughts and actions.   

The following are statements that I find offensive, to say the least:

I feel that ‘man-hating’ is an honorable and viable political act, that the oppressed have a right to class-hatred against the class that is oppressing them.
So I should consider sending my son to a college that honors its female staff by naming an award after someone that honors those that hate men?  My son is deemed to oppress women? As am I?  If women are so oppressed why are 2/3 of all doctoral graduates women?

White males are the most responsible for the destruction of human life and environment on the planet today.
So I guess all those white males that invented, produced, perfected and built and implemented all the medical advancements we have today to save  and extend billions of lives are scum and not worth mention? 

I guess all the inventions that pollute the environment, like cars, airplanes, appliances, chemicals used in make-up and the like are never used by women and only men pollute?

I claim that rape exists any time sexual intercourse occurs when it has not been initiated by the woman, out of her own genuine affection and desire.
Thus, the woman you honored by naming an award after claims I am a rapist? And I am supposed to consider sending my son to this school, who will eventually be classified as such by your university’s idol? For brevity sake, I will just quote one more:

Let’s put one lie to rest for all time: the lie that men are oppressed, too, by sexism-the lie that there can be such a thing as men’s liberation groups.
Men are never oppressed by sexism? I won’t even begin to discuss family court or the other ways men are victims of sexism.
It’s ironic that this quote would be associated with Ms. Morgan, the same woman you name your award after. The same award that screams with sexism based on the fact that male staff are eliminated from contention to receive based solely on their gender.
Perhaps irony isn’t the right word. 

Perhaps hypocrisy is more correct. 

I wonder if you could rationalize all the above concerns and quotes.  I wonder if you could think of any reason I would send my son to this school given the above issues that I addressed.
Thank you for your time,
Howard Goldman
So far, Ms Chopp has not scored any points despite having all the quite easy bonus questions presented. 

Come along Chancellor.

The Tavern sends thanks to, and hopes you drop by to read more at:


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Travel Broadens the Mind

So they say. In fact it was said to me just the other day when the 'Lonely Planet' guide people stopped by and asked if I wanted the Tavern in their book on Tasmoania.  The offer was quite good; photos and a blurb; details of the Ales on offer etc. I just had to stump up some moolah. 

I didn't. 

Anyway, even though they stood in the P&B quaffing fine drink they could not quite get the location on their map. 

They are 'tops in the field', they assured me. Asserted more like. But they are but one in a long line of travel guides dating back to the Greeks. Before the 21C guides the most famous and long lived guides were The Baedeker Guidebooks

These were German, but everyone who was anyone - and that meant English, of course, used them. A potted history was explained by another lady in the bar.

Laura Freeman, a fine gal.

An Englishman on holiday in Spain a century ago found a country with little to recommend it. Waking up on the first morning and consulting his guide book, he would have read the following description: ‘Spain is a bleak and often arid land, with few traces of picturesqueness.’

The towns, the guide continues, 'are wreathed in tobacco smoke' and the cafes are ‘very deficient in comfort and cleanliness’. The guide further warns that the service from waiters, chambermaids and porters is generally very slack and that the traveller should always count his change.

In the Spanish countryside there is great danger of highway robbery, while in the cities the police will arrest anyone they can lay their hands on.

The railway carriages and omnibuses are so filthy that a clothes brush, a duster and some insect powder should always be at hand. As for the national sport of bull fighting, it is ‘the most unsportsmanlike and cowardly spectacle’ a civilised man will ever see.

This is the account of Spain given in the 1914 Baedeker Guide. These small, red books, bound in leather, were the first recourse for an Englishman abroad in the late 19th and early 20th century.

I came, she told me, to Baedeker through my maternal grandfather, who amassed a collection of more than 130 of the red guides. He was possessed by a particularly keen sense of wanderlust, even into his 80s, and bought many hundreds of antique travel books.

The tone of the Baedeker guides is informed, detailed, authoritative — and riotously, unguardedly rude.

Alongside the city maps, ferry time-tables, and guides to churches, monuments and museums, there are unforgiving comments on the ‘natives’ a traveller might have the misfortune to encounter.
This was well before Political Correctness, 'Inclusion' or 'Tolerance' and therefore a typical German bluntness was to the fore and it was rather appealing to the English, whom it must be remembered were Anglo-Saxon. Saxons having migrated from what is now Germany. 

The Spanish are indolent, the Greeks filthy, the Italians dishonest and the ‘Orientals’ as stupid as children. The guides reflect an imperial attitude that would be unthinkable today.

For a century, Baedeker — founded in 1832 by German publisher Karl Baedeker — was the indispensable guide to Europe, the Middle East and beyond.

He prized himself on the accuracy of his books and was once discovered keeping count of how many stairs there were to the roof of Milan cathedral by placing a coin on every 20th step. He wanted his readers to know exactly how far they would have to climb.

By the outbreak of World War I, 992 editions of the guides had been published, covering Europe, Russia, North America, India and the Middle East.

After Germany, Britain was the biggest consumer of the books. 
It was the red Baedeker, small enough to fit in an overcoat pocket, which the British took as protection when they ventured abroad.

Today, many people know of Baedeker through reading or watching the film adaptation of E.M. Forster’s A Room With A View. In the opening chapters, our heroine Lucy Honeychurch (played in the film by Helena Bonham Carter) finds herself in Florence without a Baedeker.

The guide is supposed to be a shield against Italian passion and without its protective influence, Lucy finds herself being kissed by an Englishman made hot-blooded by the Tuscan sun.
Far more dangerous these days. You could lose your head in such parts.
The name was also made famous by the Baedeker Raids of World War II when the Germans targeted bombing campaigns over English cities such as Bath, Canterbury, and Norwich, singled out for their architectural beauty by Baedeker’s Guide To Great Britain. The aim was to depress morale by destroying our Regency terraces, cathedrals and medieval streets.

In return, the RAF razed Leipzig, demolishing the Baedeker HQ.

Reading the guides today you are struck by how patrician they are in their view of the world. These are books for travellers from the two great European imperial powers: Britain and Germany.

In an age before political correctness, it was possible to be really very rude indeed about foreigners. It is not just the Spanish who are liable to run off with your change. In Italy, according to my grand-father’s 1912 guide, extortion is the national hobby and begging the national plague. Customs officials unfailingly pilfer your luggage and the cab-drivers, boatmen and porters are insolent and rapacious to ‘an almost incredible pitch’.

The guide explains that while the ‘evil sanitary reputation of Naples’ is often exaggerated, it remains a filthy city. The southern Italians, Baedeker explains, believe the ‘brilliancy’ of their climate more than makes up for the dirt.

Travellers are advised to stay in hotels with iron bedsteads as these are less likely to be infested with the ‘enemies of repose’ — Baedeker’s dainty euphemism for bedbugs.

Still, the guide cheerfully concludes, things have improved greatly since the cholera epidemic of 1884, though travellers are advised not to order oysters as they have been known to cause typhus.

Greece is worse. The bedclothes at the inns are full of ‘fleas, bedbugs, lice . . . and other disgusting insects, winged and wingless’. You cannot even console yourself with a glass of wine for the Greek vintages are universally ‘insipid and weak’.

Tangiers market in Morocco is ‘an indescribable mass of Oriental humanity’; and in Egypt, any traveller who comes into contact with the natives ‘should avoid rubbing their eyes with their hands’.

You couldn’t get away with that in a Dorling Kindersley guide today.
Mind you, the Lonely Planet has annoyed a few nations in its short life at the top.
Indeed, some of Baedeker’s advice will appal modern sensibilities. In Syria, you are advised to ward off stray dogs with an umbrella and in Egypt it is acceptable to hit a cab driver with your walking stick.

You are, however, advised to ‘sternly repress’ the urge to prod a donkey with a stick to encourage it to gallop. (The original owner of my grandfather’s 1914 Egypt guide, a C. Crampton from Harrogate, put an emphatic ‘X’ in the margin next to this advice.)

Overall, the poor Egyptians are given a hard time of it. The average native, explains Baedeker, is ‘no more intelligent than a child’.

Baedeker is not just guilty of terrible racial stereotypes. 
He also has a very dim view of the capabilities of women.

A female traveller is a delicate creature who cannot possibly manage certain activities. When it comes to climbing Mount Vesuvius, for example, a man may do it on foot, but as this is too ‘fatiguing’ for ladies, they are advised to take the train. I can say with great satisfaction that I managed it perfectly well as a 13-year-old schoolgirl.

Few countries escape Baedeker’s censure, although the Dutch are grudgingly admired for their cleanliness: ‘Spiders appear to be regarded with special aversion and vermin is fortunately as rare as cobwebs.’

Germany, of course, is beyond reproach. 
But what of Great Britain?

Certainly, we fare better than some countries. ‘As compared with Continental hotels,’ explains the 1927 guide, ‘British hotels may be said as a rule to excel in cleanliness and sanitary arrangements.’

So far so good, though the guide adds that some hotels can be tolerated by gentlemen, but certainly not by ladies.

Our cuisine is inferior and monotonous and the national dish, the guide remarks disparagingly, is tea with chips and steak.

As for the British themselves, Baedeker observes that the country is ‘a place of parsons, puppy dogs and peculiar people’.

After World War II, Baedekers disappeared from British shelves. Other guides such as Dorling Kindersley, the Lonely Planet and Time Out took their place.

Then, in 2007, the series was relaunched. The red covers remain, but they now come in wipe-clean, plastic jackets. Practical, but with none of the romance of my grandfather’s red leather hardbacks.

In tone they are indistinguishable from other guidebooks. There is nothing to match Baedeker’s sniffy comment on visiting large towns in England: ‘We need hardly caution newcomers against the artifices of pickpockets and wiles of impostors.’

Nor are they as evocative as the originals — for there are passages of lyrical description amid the scorpions and bedbugs. The scenery of Southern Greece, for example, is celebrated for ‘its mountains, its deep-blue gulfs and its clear, ethereal atmosphere which brings distant objects close to the beholder and robs shadows of their depth and gloom’.

While I don’t advocate a return to the days when Edwardian guides advised travellers to wash their hands if they so much as touched a foreigner, there is something refreshing about Baedeker’s acerbic comments on the food, hotels and manners of foreign climes.

This week, many of us will return from August holidays in France, Spain and Italy rather wishing someone had warned us that the local taxis smell like goat sheds, that the paella will make you desperately ill and that you cannot get a decent cup of Earl Grey anywhere in the Mediterranean.

I hazard that things have not changed much at all.

Travel well. Pack plenty of good Ale. Be quite rude to the natives as you can rest assured they will be rude to you. In some parts they will cut your head off.

Just why this crazy Multiculturalism has taken root is beyond understanding.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Ruining a Good Arguement

We like good arguement in the Tavern. It can cause people to dig deep and find the roots of  'Ishoos' (as some insist in calling them) and defend their positions with facts, logic, deduction - and some passion.

But there are those that care little for the first three and cause ructions with the last. Franz Kafka was not the first and won't be the last to examine the bugger-factor, the messing with the mind and reality. It spoils the fine ales as well as ruins lives.

We live in an age when some people seek to overturn reality and substitute their own neuroses and psychotic demands. The social fabric falls apart, worn down from being rubbed the wrong way. 

We have 'surrogate' motherhood where babies are grown to 'spec' by poor women in under-developed countries and rejected if not up to scratch by the wealthier couples in developed ones. 

At the same time we have marriage being systematically destroyed, babies murdered in the womb by the million and homosexual couples demanding to be parents in a 'family'.  
And it is all touted as 'Good'.

We have Courts of Law that dispense with evidence and examination and rely almost entirely on ideology and accusation. Some are misnamed 'Family' Courts where the destruction of the family is the main aim. Not that it is stated that way. Instead they have the Hitleresque mantra, "in the best interests of the Children", while depriving those children of their parents or worse, taking a child from an innocent and loving parent and handing it over - with large sums of money - to liars, perjurors and false accusers. The lawyers and the State launder the money.
This, too, is touted as 'Good'.

Another 'good' is having someone with a grievance against someone else, for some trivial slight usually, taking action against other people who have nothing to do with the event. 

They go to 'Tribunals' where huge sums of money are awarded. It is 99% women complaining about 'harrassment'. The accused harrasser has usually been accused of doing precisely what the 'employer' has told him (always a him) NOT to do, but the employer is held responsible. The Shareholders have to pay.

That is YOU, as most large businesses are owned by shareholdres who put money into insurance, banks and superannuation who do most of the investing in those businesses.

It is for your own 'good', it seems. 
It is Zozchial Justitz.

We even have people 'in high places' calling Islam the 'Religion of Peace' while our TVs are full of mayhem, murder, calumny and barabarism, all emanating from that evil creed.

As it is, so has it been.

Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; 
Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; 
Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! 
21 Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes  
And clever in their own sight!
Isaiah 5.20

Wendy was in the bar delivering her cool, calm, collected thoughts about the current trends in public discussion, with the usual supects lined up for identification. 

Wendy McElroy is a feminist and welcome in the Tavern.** (I bet that suprised you.). A Canadian and quite well published, she has always followed her own path.


The term "kafkatrapping" describes a logical fallacy that is popular within gender feminism, racial politics and other ideologies of victimhood. 
It occurs when you are accused of a thought crime such as sexism, racism or homophobia. 
You respond with an honest denial, which is then used as further confirmation of your guilt. You are now trapped in a circular and unfalsifiable argument; no one who is accused can be innocent because the structure of kafkatrapping precludes that possibility.

The term derives from Franz Kafka's novel "The Trial" in which a nondescript bank clerk named Josef K. is arrested; no charges are ever revealed to the character or to the reader. Josef is prosecuted by a bizarre and tyrannical court of unknown authority and he is doomed by impenetrable red tape. In the end, Josef is abducted by two strange men and inexplicably executed by being stabbed through the heart. The Trial is Kafka's comment on totalitarian governments, like the Soviet Union, in which justice is twisted into a bitter, horrifying parody of itself and serves only those in charge.
Kafkatrapping twists reason and truth into self-parodies that serve victimhood ideologues who wish to avoid the evidence and reasoned arguments upon which truth rests. The term appears to have originated in a 2010 article written by author and open source software advocate Eric S. Raymond
He opens by acknowledging the worth of equality before the law and of treating others with respect. But, he notes, "good causes sometimes have bad consequences." 
One such consequence is that tactics used to raise consciousness can veer "into the creepy and pathological, borrowing the least sane features of religious evangelism."
Raymond offers various models of how kafkatrapping operates. He calls the two most common ones A and C.
Model A: The accuser states, "Your refusal to acknowledge that you are guilty of (sin, racism, sexism, homophobia, oppression...) confirms that you are guilty of (sin, racism, sexism, homophobia, oppression...)." 
Harking back to The Trial, Raymond explains how the novel's plot parallels the structure and purpose of the accuser's nonargument. No specific acts are named in the accusation, which makes the claim unfalsifiable. 
The vague charge constitutes a thought crime, which also makes it unfalsifiable. As with The Trial, the process seems designed to create guilt and to destroy resistance so that you become malleable. Indeed, "the only way out ... is ... to acquiesce in his own destruction." 

Even if you are innocent, the only path to redemption is for you to plead guilty and accept punishment. Ideally, for the accuser, you even come to believe in your own guilt.

Model C is a common variant on the same theme. You may not have done, felt or thought anything wrong but you are still guilty because you benefit from a position of privilege created by others. 
In other words, you are guilty because of your identification with a group such as "male," "white," or "heterosexual." The accusation makes you responsible for the actions of strangers whose behavior you cannot control and who may have died long ago. 
Raymond writes, "The aim ... is to produce a kind of free-floating guilt ... a conviction of sinfulness that can be manipulated by the operator [accuser] to make the subject say and do things that are convenient to the operator's personal, political, or religious goals." 
To be redeemed, you must cease to disagree with your accuser and condemn your entire identity group.

What happens when an accuser confronts someone in the same identity group to which he or she belongs? For example, one woman may question aspects of politically correct feminism being presented by another. An entirely different phenomenon occurs. Obviously, the questioner will not be encouraged to condemn herself for being a woman or to excoriate all women. Instead, she will be defined out of the group.
This has happened to the growing numbers of women, who, like Wendy herself, have blown the whistle on Feminism.

This is called the "No True Scotsman" fallacy. It occurs when someone is confronted with an example that disproves a universal claim. The British philosopher Antony Flew described the fallacy, which he also named. One day Hamish McDonald reads an article in the Glasgow Morning Herald which reports on an attack by a sex maniac in England. 
Hamish declares aloud, "No Scotsman would do such a thing!" The next day, the Glasgow Morning Herald reports on an even worse attack in Scotland. Rather than reject his original statement, Hamish exclaims, "No true Scotsman would do such a thing." 
Thus, conservative women like Sarah Palin are not true women; blacks who question the validity of 'white privilege' cease to be viewed as truly black.

Other techniques are often associated with kafkatrapping. (Note: For a tactic to be true kafkatrapping, it has to involve an unfalsifiable claim.) 
Associated techniques that prove your guilt could include:

Requesting a clear-cut definition of what you are charged with – for example, homophobia;
Pointing out an injustice committed by the accuser's identity group;
Applying a single standard to everyone, e.g., refusing to accept that blacks cannot be racist;
Expressing skepticism about any aspect of the victimhood ideology, including the plausibility of anecdotal evidence;
Being ignorant of or uninterested in the subject;
Arguing against the ideology;
Saying "some of my best friends are X."
Kafkatrapping would seem to be a win-win situation for an accuser. And, in the short term, this may be true but its 
long-term impact can be devastating.

A movement becomes widespread because its voice is truth – at least, largely so – and its demand for justice is valid: For example, homosexuals have been hideously abused through much of history.
Hmmmm. Quite an assertion, but with little evidence. And when compared with normal, everyday heterosexual men who have been slaughted in wars down the ages and totally destroyed by Family Courts for half a century now, the average homosexual has been mearly inconvenienced. 

When a movement discards the truth and justice that made it grow and favors abusive attacks instead, it is in decline. The abuse also quashes any productive discussion of real issues. Raymond observes, 
"manipulative ways of controlling people tend to hollow out the causes for which they are employed, smothering whatever worthy goals they may have begun with and reducing them to vehicles for the attainment of power and privilege over others."

A separate problem arises if the accuser honestly believes the kafkatrapping. A woman who believes all men are oppressors is unlikely to cooperate with them in a good will attempt to solve social problems. 
She is more likely to seek a position of dominance over men, which she justifies in the name of self-defense or as a payback that is her due. 
This heightens tension between the sexes and obstructs sincere attempts to resolve problems. 
A kafkatrapper true believer becomes increasingly isolated from people who are seen as "the enemy" because they disagree; 
the true believer becomes increasingly unable to even communicate with or have empathy for a broad spectrum of people. 
The kafkatrapper 'wins' the argument but loses a shared humanity.

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**Wendy herself falls into Kafkatrapping quagmire. She insists on holding onto the label 'Feminist' even though she is a 'self-made' woman of great intellect, honesty and integrity. It is a minor flaw with major consequences. 

I, personally, like her anyway and raise a tankard with her.