Friday, 13 February 2015

Philosophy For The Gullible

Gentlemen. And ladies. Meet Carissa Véliz. I would like to call this lady a self-styled philosopher; unfortunately she has credentials as the real thing, at least on paper. Which begs the question, what sort of garbage now passes for philosophy in our institutions of higher learning? That true philosopher Professor Antony Flew must be spinning in his grave. Bear with me, and I will explain why. Philosophy used to mean thinking about nature, Nature itself and human nature: the nature of reality, existence, the theory of knowledge, the purpose if any of life, good and evil. And so on.

True philosophers are supposed to think critically, not accept uncritically any garbage that is peddled to them and the rest of us by special interest groups or just plain liars. Here is some of the nonsense she espouses re so-called gender equality.

“After a long history of patriarchal societies, discrimination against women is still predominant, despite myths about it being a thing of the past.”

Does she really believe in patriarchy theory? Apparently so. In the past, women suffered terrible discrimination, after all they were sent off to fight wars, or to labour from dawn till dusk in the fields while men stayed home looking after the young. No? The ancient Greeks fought a war over Helen of Troy, the face that launched a thousand ships. Did any nation go to war over a man’s face, even in mythology? Gender roles, so-called, evolved not because of the wicked patriarchy but because without them, civilisation would not have survived. Women of child-bearing age and young girls are more precious than men, because a woman can bare how many children? While a man can in theory sire hundreds.

In the modern world, traditional gender roles are not so important, women don’t die in childbirth to the extent they used to; however dangerous the streets of our cities may be, they are a lot safer than the environments in which our distant ancestors lived; education is universal because the advance of technology means there is more time for the young to be educated. Unfortunately, as Miss Véliz shows, education is not always a boon.

Here’s a gem: “In 1997, it was estimated that women worked two-thirds of the world’s working hours, earned 10% of the world’s income and owned less than 1% of the world’s property”. She cites World Bank Development Indicators, 1997 as the source of this claim; unfortunately, as Christina Hoff Sommers points out, these figures were plucked out of thin air like most feminist statistics.

Let’s take just one of the above. Do women really own only 1% of the world’s property, and even if that were the case, would it matter? Much property is owned not by individuals - men or women - but by non-human entities. The Government owns much land in all countries. Infrastructure: roads, schools, hospitals, may be owned by the government, local authorities, and so on. An art gallery may be a registered charity, like for example, the Tate Gallery in London. Art galleries contain colossal wealth, though not the sort we can consume or put to use. However, apart from special exhibitions, most galleries and museums (in the UK) are open to the public free. Clearly access is easier for people who live within easy travelling distance, but in a sense the art displayed in these galleries belongs to the nation or even to the entire world.

In the UK, the Crown in the personage of the Queen owns enormous wealth including the forces - HM Armed Forces, and even the prison system - HMP. This holding of wealth is though purely symbolic, and is more of a liability than an asset, because prisons and armies do not make money. If one removes all the aforementioned forms of wealth from the equation, do women really own only 1% of the UK’s property, of America’s property, of China’s property? Clearly not. Then there is another factor to be taken into account, married couples and even families may own much of their wealth collectively; a housewife who has a wealthy husband may have no income in her own right, the same may be said of their children, but he is duty bound to provide for her. In the US, females in higher education have outnumbered males for some time; these are the high earners of the future, so clearly the figures cited by both the World Bank and our airhead philosopher are total bunk.

Sadly, Miss Véliz has also swallowed the rape culture nonsense of the sisterhood; here she parrots “1 in 6 women in the US, for example, have been the victims of a completed or attempted rape, and many rapists will say that they didn’t rape their victim even if a woman said no at the start. So, if you’re a man, be very careful about getting explicit consent and not imposing yourself on a woman.”

Studies like the infamous Ms survey conducted by Mary Koss tell us as much about the true instance of rape as for example the June 2012 survey that revealed 36% of Americans believe in flying saucers. The big difference is that the theory of flying saucers sounds good whereas the claim that one woman in 6, one in 5 or even one in 4 is or will become a rape victim sounds like and is lying propaganda. And is the average age of entry into prostitution really 13? That would imply that some or indeed many start younger; clearly this is not prostitution but child sexual abuse, which is an entirely different matter. It is simply ludicrous for her to claim that most prostitutes are abused or coerced into the oldest profession; it may be a sordid business, but not only do many women make a good living out of it - in a purely financial sense - most are happy doing it, whatever social stigma it may have.

Some do it part-time, many give it up as they age, be it out of choice or necessity, and the claim that the average age of death of prostitutes is 34 is based on what evidence, precisely? Her claim based on a New York Times article (she says) that around 90% of an estimated 200,000 to 400,000 prostitutes working in Spain have been trafficked is emotive nonsense. The word trafficked - and declensions thereof - is a recent addition to the lexicon of lunacy; it is used to imply coercion or even slavery. The bottom line is that a taxi driver who drives a prostitute to a meeting with a client can be said to have trafficked her.

Having said that, there has been a certain amount of organised trafficking of prostitutes in Spain and elsewhere, but it remains to be seen how many of these women were genuinely coerced and much less forced into prostitution, whatever tall tales they tell the police when they are busted in raids.

Let’s not bother with the nonsense about the gender pay gap, at least not while the patriarchy is paying her to produce gibberish.

Under Living Ethically, Miss Véliz displays the full extent of both her ignorance and her naïveté when she claims banks lend money. Does anyone still believe this? Banks do not lend money, rather they create credit; I have explained this in my speech Pay Wealth-Creators, Not Banksters, others have explained it before me, and increasingly ordinary people are coming to recognise the banking scam for what it is. It remains to be seen though if even Goldman Sachs has knowingly been involved in the trafficking of underage girls for the sex trade as she claims here.

Miss Véliz is also an advocate of veganism: cows, pigs, and chickens, all show a wide array of emotions, including fear and happiness, she says. Certainly cows do, although they do not necessarily display much intelligence. Is it really cruel, barbaric, inhumane to breed animals for food? Why don’t you ask your local fox? Hey dude, don’t you realise that tearing chickens to shreds is cruel, barbaric and unfoxlike? Have you ever considered veganism? But it gets worse: a vegetarian can save up to about 400 lives a year, she says. Man, she must have found that figure on the same website as her ludicrous rape statistics.

Gentlemen. And ladies. Miss Véliz is a truly tragic case. All the more tragic for me, because I really could have done with meeting a woman like her thirty years ago when I would have charmed her into my bed with my own hard luck story, and probably have persuaded her to pick up the restaurant bill into the bargain.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Barrister’s Rape Blog Controversy

Last week, a barrister caused controversy by suggesting in a blog that if a woman complains about being raped while drunk, her complaint should be dismissed. Drunken consent is still consent, argued David Osborne, who one hopes is no relation to George Osborne.

His suggestion was indelicate, to put it mildly, but was clearly provoked by the ludicrous hysteria we are now facing on both sides of the Atlantic about certain kinds of rape. Not the unambiguous kind in which a victim is attacked in her own home or in the park by a masked assailant who often terrorises and brutalises her in addition to any sexual acts he performs or forces her to perform, but the she said/he said type known as date rape, acquaintance rape, and the like. Although his blog was removed PDQ - one suspects after a call from the Bar Council or some such - it has been captured by at least one newspaper. Outrage aside, one should ask, was he right? The unambiguous answer is of course yes and no.

Firstly there are cases - thankfully few and far between - like the outrageous and well-publicised Steubenville affair of 2012 in which a 16 year old girl got drunk at a party, and was then handed round like a piece of meat by other students who seemed to think their behaviour was hilarious. Then, at the other end of the spectrum there was the still albeit sordid Ched Evans case in which a young woman went to an hotel with the intent of having sex with one man, then woke up the next morning (claiming) she could not remember if she had engaged in sexual acts with one man or two or none.

Some cases are worse than that by far, a young woman may consume a great deal of alcohol then have sex with a man who is equally drunk. If she cannot remember - or claims she cannot remember - having sex, agreeing to have sex, or even if she initiates the act with a willing partner, can that really be classed as rape, or is it simply buyer’s remorse?

A woman who goes to bed with a prince and wakes up next to a frog has not been raped, rather she has had bad sex. This is something that cuts both ways.

David Osborne’s anger was directed at the insidious and dangerous attempts of the CPS to pander to anti-rape activists (so-called) who insist on no credible evidence that the vast majority of rapes go unreported, and that this is because of a culture of disbelief amongst the police. Furthermore, they claim, juries acquit defendants unjustly because they too have been taken in by rape myths, one of the most prevalent being that women seldom if ever lie about being raped. All the available credible evidence indicates otherwise. The fact is that when juries hear the evidence, so-called, they refuse to convict. Why should a jury convict on the evidence of a woman who claims to have been raped by a man, who admits dating him repeatedly afterwards, then weeks or months later accuses him of rape? That is what happened in the case of American student Landen Gambill, which did not involve either alcohol or the police.

A major false premise about most of these date rape cases is that any sex that takes place is initiated by the male, and that this is seen as some sort of reward, one which is always given reluctantly. The reality is that it is the woman who chooses to have sex, and with whom, including who takes her home, at least as far as young women are concerned, though as women grow older, men have more say and may even dictate terms.

We need to break away from this hysterical nonsense; convicting innocent men is an even greater injustice than allowing the innocent to walk free, although increasingly those who control our criminal justice system do not appear to believe so.