Fact check: study shows transition makes trans people suicidal

After the last two reblogs, I almost instantly regretted it, not least because the middle position I stake out between so-called TERFS and trans militants results in internet outcomes only a masochist could love.

You really haven’t lived, though, until a congenial, seemingly reasonable Marxist approvingly emails you an essay from a right-wing Christian think tank and then snarks when you balk. What’s so striking to me about the cruder trans excluders is the combo of religious zeal and paucity of evidence for all their fuss. This combo to me, coupled to a deep conviction that the people they target for pathologizing and ostracism are monsters if they object too stridently, is often a sign of working backwards from a bias, and is among the reasons why my middle position is somewhat less middle lately.  I’ll clarify that when, somewhat later this week,  I engage down in comments.

Since, sadly, the belligerent vulgarizing of radfem critique continues on radical Twitter, by people who seem utterly convinced that they’re punching up, I am going to own up to, and apologize for, the glaring omission of a trans voice from my “both sides” reblogs the last time around. I am commending my readers to this Trans Advocate interview by Cristan Williams with Swedish researcher Cecilia Dhejne. I’ve chosen it because Dhejne co-authored a study that is among the most widely used to pathologize and fear-monger around trans people.

The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post  and Fox News are among the many mainstream sources that have cited the study to cast trans people in a negative light, particularly to the effect that gender confirming medical treatment doesn’t help them. The Christian think tank essay I mentioned above also cites it. These negative pieces citing the study clearly furnish a lot of the talking points bouncing around the internet at the moment. This is my main reason for boosting this six-year-old interview with Dehne, who lucidly explains the extent to which trans opponents have grossly misrepresented her work while clarifying what it actually shows.

Williams: Before I contacted you for this interview, were you aware of the way your work was being misrepresented?

Dhejne: Yes! It’s very frustrating! I’ve even seen professors use my work to support ridiculous claims. I’ve often had to respond myself by commenting on articles, speaking with journalists, and talking about this problem at conferences. The Huffington Post wrote an article about the way my research is misrepresented. At the same time, I know of instances where ethical researchers and clinicians have used this study to expand and improve access to trans health care and impact systems of anti-trans oppression.

Of course trans medical and psychological care is efficacious. A 2010 meta-analysis confirmed by studies thereafter show that medical gender confirming interventions reduces gender dysphoria.

You can read the rest here.

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Shirley there’s nothing more to say on the subject of radfems vs transwomen

In the interest of a robust discussion, and in light of my own fence-sitting on this issue,  I’m commending my readers to this four year old post by the great Twisty Faster at I Blame the Patriarchy, who is both an old school rad fem and a prolific supporter of trans women.

There are three aspects of this trans “debate” that particularly chap the spinster hide. One is that it is even considered a debate. Is there anything more demeaning than a bunch of people with higher status than you sitting around debating the degree to which they find you human? I don’t think so.

The second hide-chap is the main anti-trans “argument.” It goes:

Unless you were born a woman, how can you really know what women’s oppression means? You benefited from male privilege once; how can we trust you? Your male junk threatens us. You mock us with your affected femininity. You’re not authentic.

This argument is phobic and dumb. It proceeds from, among things like fear and internalized misogyny, the premise that there exists a standard or authentic “woman’s experience” of oppression that derives entirely from childhood indoctrination and imbues the experiencer with some kinda moral authority. The premise is false. An experience of womanhood is not the experience of womanhood. Take, for example, the issue of privilege:

Some women have a little privilege. Some women have a shit-ton of privilege. Some women have a shit-ton of privilege and then lose it. Some women have zippo privilege and then get some later. Some women only ever have zippo, period. Some women are atheists, have short brown hair, drive red Fords, have scars where their sex organs used to be, can’t get health insurance, eat only vegetables and shave their mustaches.

Source: I Blame the Patriarchy


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Sex and Gender: A Beginner’s Guide

I’m fighting with friends over trans issues at the moment, taking the position that some radfem critique trivializes and even erases anti-trans oppression. However, I think one thing these friends and I can all agree on is that maligning all misgivings about trans identity politics as “transphobic” is thought-terminating bullshit. I think we can also agree that there is at least a smattering of penis-having assholes in the trans movement throwing their weight around in relation to biological women, and these shitheads should go fuck themselves.  I think where my friends and I differ is on just how much a part of trans movement politics an undeniably reactionary, patriarchal element is and where they belong in relation to other political priorities and concerns. My pals seem to be cherry-picking bad actors.

However, since I hate thought-terminating maneuvers in left discourse more than just about anything, and since I think a lot of people dismiss the radical feminist critique of trans identity politics without even knowing what it is, I am, without apology or qualification reblogging this very comprehensive and well-written summary of theoretical objections.  As ever, my main interest is in a smarter conversation, so please comment accordingly.

Source: Sex and Gender: A Beginner’s Guide h/t @lethaleducation

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Beets, Limes and Life – Roasted Beet Sandwich with Lime Aioli

This gallery contains 7 photos.

Originally posted on Cared For Kitchen:
Beats, Rhymes and Life, the 1996 album by A Tribe Called Quest, was the inspiration for this dish. The pun “beets, limes and life” popped into my head a few weeks ago and I’ve…

Gallery | 7 Comments

Meat is For Assholes

“Chicken nuggets are my family” joked a “leftist” on Twitter in between very truly sincere, deeply important and useful hours and hours of handwringing over US imperialism.

Of course chicken nuggets have everything to do with imperialism, and even fucking Thomas Friedman knows this: “McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas” he famously wrote. But attempting to bring our actual habits into line with our political principles is just sooo liberal, as are, presumably, any misgivings we might have about dropping uncompensated advertising for giant fast food multinationals into streams of robotic, entirely inconsequential outrage over ruling class predation. We can’t do anything til after the rev, kids, which is, um, coming. Til then, bon appétit!

Except where Israel is concerned. Every worthy radical must boycott the one or two Israeli products they might actually consume once or twice a year. Also, make sure that when you haul your affluent fat ass onto a plane for climate-damaging leisure travel, it’s to somewhere other than the zionist entity. And don’t forget to spend hours on Twitter calling out micro-celebrities embarked upon psy ops aimed at their micro-followings. That’s real praxis also.

But don’t even think about withdrawing material support — and free advertising — from an industry that is ruinous to the environment, bad for your health, imperialist in the extreme, and that routinely visits unimaginable cruelty on billions of non-human animals. To do otherwise is not just liberal but also racist, culturally imperialist and anti-labor depending on what unbearably ridiculous booj pseud you listen to.

How I’ve come to hate this nonsense. I actually prefer right-wingers in some ways. So much less vanity if nothing else. And no right-winger anywhere ever cried “cultural imperialism” or “racism” to defend their own filthy, vicious, imperialist habits. Please, if you’re going to be a fucking nihilistic, repulsively childish slob where diet is concerned, at least have the decency to shut the fuck up about it. Tolerance for your bullshit is part of the disease. It’s enabling.  And you’re a useless fraud, to put it nicely. So maybe shut up about everything else while you’re at it.

Even if one puts all meat-related issues aside to focus entirely on climate change,  no self-respecting vegan should feel any reluctance to tell a meat cultist pretending to care about something other than their own appetites, to go fuck themselves. Nor should they indulge lessons in tolerance from moralizing, booj egotists who feel qualified to tell them where and how to draw lines against things that should have been taboo, if not outright illegal, decades ago. Tolerance for nihilistic gluttons is a tactical matter and nothing else. In fact, purely ethical consideration argues overwhelmingly for shaming and more.

Side note: My grocer only sells carrots from Israel which I promise to boycott after the rev. Until then, Israeli carrots are my family.  Come at me, hypocrites.

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If It Quacks Like a Fascist…

Below, from Twitter, the excellent @gbelljnr on why what is charitably known as “irony” on what is charitably known as “the left” is not meaningfully different from its fascist antecedent. Only social climbing bullies and would be bullies countenance this shit. So it’s fitting that previously disparate factions of disciplinary, social climbing liberals, like the Snowwald dullards, Jacobin/DSA High School, and run-of-the-mill reactionaries like Freddie deBoer are all rallying around it.

The best thing about this crap is that it offers nothing to anyone you might want alongside you in a movement or who would primarily benefit from one. It’s a self-induced quarantine against juvenile sociopaths and vapid, upper middle class, mostly male, mostly white social climbers. That their “thought” leaders are counseling participation in the moldy old Democratic Socialists of America — MoveOn for Boomers, basically — is only slightly less wonderful than, say, watching them march off a cliff. Keep it up, guys!

Over to George:

The people you’re talking about are dissociative shitposting personalities heavily influenced by channer culture. Their entire means of communicating is characterized by habituated abuse, online mobbing and recursive irony. They purport to be on the left, and even occasionally mouth opinions which approximate mild social democracy. None of this, however, distinguishes them from the alt-right, with whom they share the channer cultural indicia.

Appropriations from the conceptual apparatus of the left, and ironic leftish roleplay are common within the alt-right. Many of the alt-right’s moving spirits, especially within the neoreactionary subcurrent, are “former left”s. Most ethnographies of the alt-right describe a particular use of irony to obfuscate political intentionality. It enables shitposters to waste time, intimidate, confuse and dissemble about their true intentions.

[They insist] earnestly on good faith in one exchange and then [deny] indications to the contrary under a veil of irony. In particular, this technique is used to constantly inject racism, homophobia, sexism & other bigotry into discussion, constantly probing as to the limits of acceptable discourse before switching it out as “irony” and “just a joke.” All of these characteristics are to be found within chapo fandom and the “irony bro” tendency generally.

It is not convincing when people who behave in most ways like alt-right accounts confess leftish sympathies. Anyone who has been paying attention for the last few years has numerous examples of shitposting trolls who were debuted to the world by prominent “left” accounts, and were sold as “left” and whose putative misogyny, homophobia, racism, anti-semitism, and professed nazi sympathies were excused as “just a joke man” “you just don’t get it” “omg grow a sense of humor” “read a book about irony”  only for them to blossom, at peak platform, into full blown nazis, even so as to make their patrons blush.

So, when people behave like this, as tens of people in my mentions have been behaving all weekend, why should anyone assume that it is their leftish opinions that they are not being ironic about? I mean, figure it out. None of this is rocket science.

The reward for engagement is always ridicule. I am sick of differentiating these people on their declared politics. Nothing they say is trustworthy, so why must their politics be treated as determinate based on their declarations? As far as I am concerned their objective politics is represented by their mode of interaction and communication, and by the reactionary character of their sense of humor. Their protestations can be ignored as what they are: distractions. These people are all fash or proto fash.

George said all this in reply to a troll pretending an interest in discussion, after George had been swarmed by irony vermin for lamenting veteran fascist enabler Glenn Greenwald’s Chapo patronage. Of course he was completely vindicated by the thoroughly predictable, juvenile, hackneyed response. Probably the worst thing is this shit isn’t even funny.

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I love them in their earnest moments most of all…

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And The Ruling Class Trembled


Yesterday a billionaire’s clerk updated his brand started a circle jerk joined a movement of truly revolutionary proportions.

I, for one, welcome the consolidation of previously separate pseudo-left factions into the DSA (Democrats of Something Awful).  It’s clarifying and hopefully helps clueless fucks get a purchase on reality if they still regard their favorite pseud as some kind of exception. Like perhaps the radlib Craphouse haters who have been WTF-ing Greenwald over this. Why the surprise?

Greenwald is the spiritual leader of an entirely de-politicized “left” defined by insipid, ahistoric disaffection, sneering superiority, anti-radicalism, and a soft spot for fascism. He places his pro bono defense of a violence-inciting white supremacist among his proudest achievements, is ardently anti-communist, regards the Skokie decision as a peak moment in Western Civilization,  and was one of white nationalist Weev’s earliest and most enduring champions. It was through Greenwald that fascist trolling as a substitute for argument became normalized on the scare quote left, and he cultivated Chapo’s Felix Biedermann and pals for sociopathic micro-jihads against his critics. Remember when they swarmed writers who dared to implicate his billionaire boss in Ukrainian neo-naziism? No? Perhaps you were too busy jerking off to surveillance porn.

What other than the most abject fucking stupidity can possibly explain surprise or disappointment at Greenwald burnishing his brand where 4chan proto-fascism and liberal disaffection intersect? Greenwald doesn’t just belong here. This is the house he built. Why do you think these repellant assholes compete to get their mouths around his nutsack in social media, as in the truly grotesque display featured below?

Among capital’s anointed “lefts” there are no exceptions, you fucking idiots. When will you grow the fuck up???

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