#21 [url]

Mar 16 17 4:19 AM

It sort of depends on where you think the 'waterline' actually is. From my perspective you aren't 'above the waterline' unless you have enough capital put aside that you can basically just live on the interests and not have to worry about keeping working to get any more, but how much you actually need for that depends on your lifestyle aspirations as much as it does on any specific value.

So Paul Allen is now way way above the waterline, though he didn't start out like that, but even he's not quite up there with the Sultan of Brunei who didn't have to work nearly so hard to get that kind of security.
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But to me the billionaire range is just excessive, as you could live really quite comfortably on just the returns from just a couple of million set aside, even with a low interest rate, provided you weren't also trying to 'keep up with the jones' in terms of having expensive cars and really big houses and rolex watches and things.

But yes, even that is way way way above the norm, because nowadays most people my age seem to be living in debt from student loans and mortgages and having to work all the time just to pay the interest, so I guess my living on a sort of zero-sum balance is considered 'rich' or at least 'comfortable'. Like I don't go out and flash the cash, but I can afford to buy an iPad if I feel like it, without having to spread the payments out over the next two years.

But whatever, I guess our 'lords and masters' finally figured out that trans people physically exist, it's more like 1:100 than 1:30,000 people, and it's actually down to the structure of their brain and isn't due to a poor upbringing or repressed childhood trauma, though it might be the cause of childhood trauma, so keeping them depressed and unemployable and locking them up when some of them almost-inevitably go crazy from sexual frustration is more expensive in the long run than just giving them the relatively cheap HRT they are so craving. It's not such a big deal after all, and it makes for good TV as people tell their stories of how they have triumphed over adversity and fought for their rights against the medical establishment and all that, it just has to be done relatively slowly as there are still plenty of people who are really queasy about us, and really don't want us in their children's schools either as pupils or teachers.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/nov/07/my-transsexual-summer-channel-4

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I guess if we're just the really pretty ones staring on TV, or the really smart ones designing the computer chips and writing the operating systems inside the precious iPads, and not the really ugly ones using their public bathrooms and scaring the kids, we are safely out of sight and out of mind.
https://www.reddit.com/r/asktransgender/comments/1hb6s1/what_careers_are_trans_people_highly_represented/

O
h, and as someone who grew up in a home with Radio 4 on all the time, and so being forced to listen to Jenni Murray on Women's Hour over and over about the gender pay gap and the glass ceiling and so forth this turn of events is rather hilarious.
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http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/entertainment/news/india-willoughby-bigot-dame-jenni-should-be-fired-for-attack-on-trans-women-35503497.html

https://ladyeconomist.com/2014/10/20/trans-women-pay-gap-and-the-pervasiveness-of-gender-in-the-economy/

Last Edited By: Xora Mar 16 17 5:22 AM. Edited 3 times.

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#22 [url]

Mar 16 17 6:38 AM

Xora wrote:
I think we've all lost the plot somewhat. What is the actual goal of the system? Is there one?

Well, I guess in the grander scheme the goal of the system is for us all to work together to create a better life for all of us.
Xora wrote:
But anyway, I guess I'm saying that all this identity politics and sexual minority stuff is not about bringing about any actual long term social change, the system carries on re-perpetuating itself regardless with fresh bodies every few decades, and it's more of a bit of temporary side-show motivation and distraction, something else to argue about like 'bathroom bills', so that you stop looking so hard at the people pulling all your strings.
I have to strongly disagree.  All this identity politics and minority stuff (or as I like to call them "civil rights") has brought about HUGE amounts of social change.  My country started out as a slave-owning country in which only rich land owning white men had rights.  But over time change after change has come.  Slavery ended, Jim Crow ended, non-land owners got to vote, racial minorities got to vote, women got to vote, and rights have expanded immensely.

When she was a teenager my mother couldn't even get a vehicle without a male relative co-signing for her.  Now, such a thing would never happen.  Hell, there was once a time when a woman would be sent to jail for wearing slacks.

http://www.latimes.com/local/california/la-me-california-retrospective-20141023-story.html

Not too long ago the Irish were considered a racial minority in my coutry and the idea of a Catholic, much less a Black, president was absurd.  Now we have had both.  In fact, the US Supreme court has almost nothing but Catholic judges on it.  Sure, there is much more progress to be made, but these are not minor changes.

And during my lifetime I have seen the rights of the LGBTQ community explode.  I was alive when sodomy laws where struck down, and when same sex couples got the right to marry.  These were big changes!  Marriage, in my country, carries with it thousands of rights and privileges including the right to see your loved one when they get put in the hospital.  To the people involved these thing were no mere sideshow.

And, neither are the bathroom issue.  The ability to relieve oneself is a vital human function and the right to do so in a way that is safe and appropriate gets to the very core of the concept of what a right is.  A government construct that states what people are allowed to do.  And if we are not allowed to preform basic human biological functions, then what?



Xora wrote:
To them you are more or less just a self-motivated mobile meat based cog in their private money-making machine, and while you might believe you have the 'right' to make these personal lifestyle choices, that you possess a soul or a spirit that wants to soar to new heights and you want to experience true love or start a family, they don't want to spend that much money or effort on giving you crazy total-gene makeover treatments when you are basically just expendable apart from all the effort they have already invested in your brain making you somewhat skilled in one particular domain or another. We don't change people body bones and blood and DNA etc., if they are somewhat useful we prop them up by spending as little as possible on them, making them jump through lots of hoops in the name of 'safety', eventually maybe fixing their flawed biology and basically humouring their neurosis, if they are not so useful we let them blow their brains out if they want to, and there are always plenty more where they came from

Yet,by banding and working together people have forced these people to pay these very things.  Sweat shops used to be common in the US, but we changed the laws and forced them to accept things like minimum wages, 8 hour work weeks, minimum safety standards and much more.  Some still try to go to other countries to get around these things, but slowly those other countries are starting to develop similar laws and there are fewer and fewer places for them to flee to and more and more laws forcing them to have to stay.

And we do change those things.  Blood transfusions and gene therapy are things that people receive now.  And of course we make people jump through hopes in the name of safety, but once we release those hoops are no longer needed we slowly eliminate them.  And I don't know about where you live, but we most definitely do not allow people to blow their brains out if they want to here in the US.  In fact, the right to die is something we are still fighting for in most states.

Xora wrote:
Your life is not really about these kinds of personal freedoms and experiences, that's just the product of centuries of religious indoctrination and the last 100 or so years of excess industrialisation and consumerism having pretty much rewitten our psychology to have massively inflated expectations of our own personal value to the world. The terms 'cis' and 'trans' in this context are merely a cultural invention of the last decade or so in which we have started to address/pander to some more obscure aspects of the collective variations of human biology/psychology, who seem to be getting quite vocal about their so-called 'rights', as it's probably ultimately cheaper than just keeping them on psychiatric drugs for the rest of their lives. Get a few nice propaganda pieces on the TV to make the scared and deeply closeted feel a bit safer about coming out and getting treated and they'll maybe stop perpetuating the problem on into the next generation.

I am an agnostic and an existential nihilist.  I don't believe that life is about anything but living, that the only meaning in life is what we give to it ourselves, and I am not controlled by any of the Religious dictates save the ones that work with my utilitarian and semi-humanist philosophy of life.  That said, it only makes logical sense (in a prisoner's dilemma sort of way) to work together to increase our own collective happiness and eliminate as much suffering as we can.  Rights and Freedom play an important role in achieving that.  

And pyschiatric drugs don't work on trans individuals, because being transgender is not a mental illness.  There is a myth that it does, but it is been debunked.


Nor is Gender dysphoria a choice that can be perpetuated to the next generation.  There is a biological aspect to it, and it is inborn.
Xora wrote:
I know I'm really cynical right now, but you know, all the advances we have had in science and technology in my short lifetime seem mostly to go towards tightening the cage around us, providing us with mere mindless entertainment, and giving us starry-eyed hope for a glorious future singularity type event that is never really going to happen.

I have a pretty cynical outlook on life myself, but even I can't deny the benefit of medical advances.  When my country first started, most parents didn't bother to name a child until several weeks after it was born because infant mortality was so low, but just between the 1960s and 2000s infant mortality rates fell over 70%!  Back when my country first started, a simple scratch could easily cause an infection that would kill you.  Now, it is no big deal.

My own biological father, back in the 80's got a blood transfusion which gave him AIDS.  He died when I was 9 or 10 years old.  Back then, that disease was a death sentence.  Now, we have the medicines to let a person live a full life despite having that disease.  If he had the medicines we have today back then he could still be alive.  That is major.

Polio, turburculosis, and many other disease that were major killers are almost extinct now.

And what is wrong with mindless entertainment?  Leisure time is a good thing.  People used to have to do grueling hard labor from dawn till dusk tending farms and fields with no time to themselves what-so-ever.  I think of having time for mindless entertainment a good thing.  And having hope for a better future is also a good thing.  Have a chance for a happier future is something people have wanted since written history began.

Will it happen for most of us?  Of course not.  But, so long as it is possible, so long as their is room for hope; that makes life worth living to a huge portion of people.  And it is something worth fighting for to increase that possibility.  No matter how cynical one becomes, just throwing one's hand up in capitulation just because everything is not perfect, and without even trying to change anything, never helps anyone.

That is the thing about being a pessimist/cynic, we are always either proven right or pleasantly surprised.  If anything, we have even less excuse to not try and improving thing than anyone else.  Cause we love being proven wrong.

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#23 [url]

Mar 16 17 10:07 AM

And psychiatric drugs don't work on trans individuals, because being transgender is not a mental illness. There is a myth that it does, but it is been debunked.

http://genderanalysis.net/2016/12/myth-pimozide-and-gender-dysphoria-gender-analysis/

Nor is Gender dysphoria a choice that can be perpetuated to the next generation. There is a biological aspect to it, and it is inborn.




Yes, I already agree with both, psychiatric drugs don't work because it is not actually mental illness, but it has long been treated like one, and it's only really recently that people have started to agree, probably as recently as the 70s people like me were given drugs or ECT, and back in the 50s or so maybe even lobotomies. Turns out HRT does work and it's much cheaper than psychiatric drugs, and doesn't leave you like a living zombie like a lobotomy, but most doctors used to be so dead against it just on principle that they never even considered that, it's better to be a zombie than a woman or something.



No it's not a choice, yes it can be passed down to the next generation, as we've already seen on a number of other threads, both through some genetic factors and through a high T masculine woman producing children from a high E feminine man, producing more feminine boys and masculine girls, the biology just works that way regardless of what the parents believe about themselves or how they actually behave.



I don't know, I'd like to believe the mythology of my country too. I'm hardly all 'God save the Queen' for one I don't think there is a God, and for another what right do these people think they have to rule over us?

No, don't say the divine right of Kings given to them by God, as that's just circular reasoning. Yes I'll sing the national anthem when required, no I won't believe in it, same as I went to church for years and got paid to be in choir without believing in it. I never went through with confirmation though, so I'm not a paid-up christian.



But erm, I'm living in a farmhouse with a stone over the front door that says it was built in 1753, which kind of predates most of the institutions of your famous democracy.

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So having done my research it seems pretty clear that the USA, is basically just a tax farm, with some rather pissed off human inhabitants going round and round in circles.

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You can vote for as many policies as you like, but you won't end up in charge, and the more 'free' stuff you vote for the more expensive it gets to live there, the more you pay in taxes and the larger and more inefficient the bureaucracy, but you can't ever go back in the opposite direction because it's 'wrong', human rights and all that. The people that set up your Federal Reserve and tax system, well they were rich European Aristocrats, who said there's a nice empty new continent, let's fill it with a bunch of 'rugged individualist' people, yearning for freedom, get it running a version of our existing socio-religious/cultural matrix software, as it's working pretty well over here, and there are lots of natural resources in that large empty territory to exploit, and when we've used up the natural resources there are always the people to continually fleece.

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The people running your place are just as ruthless as the Sultan of Brunei, they just stay well out of sight rather than sitting in obvious gold palaces.



What's wrong with mindless entertainment? ;-)

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#24 [url]

Mar 18 17 11:46 PM

Lost247365 wrote:
Xora wrote:
I think we've all lost the plot somewhat. What is the actual goal of the system? Is there one?

Well, I guess in the grander scheme the goal of the system is for us all to work together to create a better life for all of us.
Which isn't actually happening in the western world since that would presuppose rising real incomes for the masses instead of just the 1% percent and income stagnation or even deterioration for everyone else since the 70's. I personally think that somewhat loosely translated into "life prospects", we are considerably worse off today than in the 70's.

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/10/09/for-most-workers-real-wages-have-barely-budged-for-decades/

What people are too dumb too realize is that globalization (the outsourcing of manufacturing and the laissez faire importation of migrants to the west) is simply swelling the reserve labour markets, pressing wages south according to the "iron law of wages" (Ferdinand Lassalle). It's a banker's and big corporate executive's paradise. It's a road to ruin for the rest of us. What western countries need are nationalist policies and to tell the free marketeers, who are only in it for the free exploitation of people and the environment, to go to hell.

During the Trump presidential campaign it looked for a while like here's somebody who would actually attempt to set a new course, but he seems to have fallen in line as well, or was just another neocon Trojan horse from the outset. And meanwhile, the entire liberal left establishment has gathered firmly behind the big banker neocon laissez faire military security complex. Now, that's truly hilarious, if all this anti-Russian and anti-Iranian warmongering wasn't so tragic.

"We live only to discover beauty. All else is a form of waiting."

- Khalil Gibran


If I cannot be a feminine traditional woman, what's the point of being a woman?

- Me

Last Edited By: Monique Mar 18 17 11:53 PM. Edited 2 times.

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#25 [url]

Mar 19 17 4:00 AM

I am starting to realize that my own perspectives on this is so different because I am living in Scandinavia. The wealth distribution is so much smaller here than in the US, that I can see first hand that it is possble to change the system and make it more fair. Free college education and publicly funded health care allows for much greater social mobility. 

One generation ago one side of my family where relatively poor fishermen and farmers. Now I have a university degree and I am an in a positiion where I do feel I can make a diffeerence.

As gender goes, we have seen a close to complete acceptance of gays and lesbians. Unlike in the US, we see continous progress in the area of transgender acceptance, as well, even with a Conservative government. (But then again we have a married, gay, minister of health.)

But none of this would have been possible without decades of hard work building trust between labor unions and industry organisations, left wing and right wing politicians, and the development of a strong social security net that catches those who fall.

Like Lost I still believe in the rationality of politics, and the possibility of social change for the better. But rational politics must also taken into consideration the irrationality of man.

When people are afraid, and they lose trust in the social order, their prejudices and psychological hang-ups take over, and they start to look for scape-goats: the black, the Jews, the gay, the immigrants, the transgender people.  They are channeling their fear and anger against "The Other", the ones "not like me".  Paradoxically, this may even be the case when "The Other" are "just like me". Some of the most aggressive homophobes have felt same-sex desire themselves. 

In other words: They are not targeting those that benefit most from keeping the system as it is. They are kicking downwards, trying to hurt those that seem to be even weaker than themselves. It's sad, but it gives them a sense of agency and power.

This is why I think it is so important that we manage to give transgender and queer people a human face, so that they see that we are not really "The Other", but someone not unlike themselves: Real human beings. And that is why it is important to build a political culture of respect and transparency. 


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(OECD)

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#26 [url]

Mar 19 17 1:21 PM

jackmolay wrote:

When people are afraid, and they lose trust in the social order, their prejudices and psychological hang-ups take over, and they start to look for scape-goats: the black, the Jews, the gay, the immigrants, the transgender people.  They are channeling their fear and anger against "The Other", the ones "not like me".  Paradoxically, this may even be the case when "The Other" are "just like me". Some of the most aggressive homophobes have felt same-sex desire themselves. 

In other words: They are not targeting those that benefit most from keeping the system as it is. They are kicking downwards, trying to hurt those that seem to be even weaker than themselves. It's sad, but it gives them a sense of agency and power.

I hope this wasn't in some weirdly implicit way directed at me, because if it was it wasn't just rude but also highly unfair.

"We live only to discover beauty. All else is a form of waiting."

- Khalil Gibran


If I cannot be a feminine traditional woman, what's the point of being a woman?

- Me

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