Monday, February 28, 2011

The King's Speech

The King's Speech has won the Oscar for Best Picture for 2010. In one scene, King George V (if any stupid nerd wants to say "That movie's about King George VI," know that this particular scene involves King George V) makes a remark like "If we fall, there will be nothing left but the jackboots and the proletarian abyss."

I would bet that some people (wose goal is the jackboots) are reacting to the victory of The King's Speech by saying "Ha ha! Stutterer! This is stupid liberal faggot Jew bullshit because it's about people facing disadvantages. This encourages people to think about the world in terms of fairness as opposed to winning, and thinking about the world in terms of fairness is only good when when me and people like me are faced with an unfair disadvantage. Andt is not Homer.: or another classic accomplishment that they chooses to use when criticizing anything as a way of criticizing whatever is not them.

I would also bet that other people (whose goal is the proletarian abyss) would react by saying "Racist! It's about the King of England, which is the most obvious example of privilege you could imagine. We should dislike privilege and instead only care about poor women of color who used to be men and work as community organizers."

Fortunately, people themselves are neither jackboots nor a proletarian abyss, and we can all have different opinions, while mostly treating each other like human beings.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


The violent protests in Middle Eastern countries have taken the form of civil war in Libya. Qaddafi's dictatorship in Libya, by its deeply violent response to protests against it. is making other corrupt governments in the region look good.

Libya has a lot to gain from getting rid of Qaddafi. His rule by tribalism and revolutionary committees puts more obstacles between the Libyan people and their legal rights than if he were a normal dictator who ruled the country through the police in the state. Because Libya is a country with a lot of oil relative to its small population, its people could see their standards of living improve from better government that could help the people take advantage of those natural resources.

However, the most important part, from a certain point of view, is that people are being killed for their freedom. The person who writes Wido Incognitus is worried that he is a failure and loser or many reasons, but he is not especially worried about being killed for opposing a dictatorship.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Earthquake in New Zealand

An earthquake has caused death and destruction in New Zealand, especially in the city of Christchurch. May they all rest in peace. The destruction of the city's cathedral especially may shake faiths in God or encourage those with faith in atheism, but it does not change the truth.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Italy and Berlusconi

Here is an interesting article about protests in Italy against prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. The biggest protests in Rome were singing along to Aretha Franklin's Respect (which is actually an Otis Redding song about beating up his woman because she won't respect him), a moment of silence, a "scream of protest," and speeches from a motley crue of feminists and people who just don't like Berlusconi.

Benedetto Bruno, a retired chemist with Italy’s Civil Protection Agency, who captured how polarizing Mr. Berlusconi has become. “People vote for him because he personifies defects that Italians have in their DNA,” he said. “When you hear about what he does, 80 percent of men think, ‘I wish I were in his place.’ ”

Mr. Bruno added, “I hate to say this, but Italians don’t want to respect laws, they don’t want to pay taxes, they want to do as they like, and he personifies this.”

The main scandal involves allegations that he paid a 17 year old girl for sex, then told the police who were investigating her that she was the daughter of, yes, Hosni Mubarak, then laughing it off by saying that it was better than being gay.

One aspect of this is a bad attitude to women. A politician with an attitude to women that treats them a lot like sex objects is unlikely to make good policy decisions about women. This is shown to be a valid concern considering that Berlusconi promotes underqualified show-girls to prominent positions in his government.

Another aspect is a bad attitude to gays. There are two ways of interpreting "better than being gay," even translated from the Italian "meglio che gay." On one level it means "it is better for me as a man to like women than to do gay acts." If you are straight, then this is clearly a correct and inoffensive statement. It is like saying "I like roast beef, it is better than steak." But on another level it means "it is better to for me as a man to like women than to like men." This is a statement that is about what it is better to like as opposed to what is better to do, based on what you already like. It is like saying "I like roast beef, it is better than liking steak," but sexual preference is a bigger part of people's lives than preference in meat. Now even if you believe that homosexuality is a ridiculous and gross perversion, a politician should still be more diplomatic about this and not make it into a huge joke which suggests hostility to people who are not like you.

A third aspect of this scandal is that it involves abuse of power by allegedly intervening with the investigation of the police. If politicians are allowed to act with impunity, then politicians, and the bureaucrats who are most likely to listen to them, are likely to ignore their constituents and instead enrich themselves, which has been a problem for many years in Italy.

A fourth aspect of this scandal is that a politician who venally breaks any law, like laws against prostitution, should face the same consequences as any other person. Otherwise, this not only contributes to the isolation of politicians from their people, but is also a way of allowing people to get away with whatever other behavior the state has decided is a crime.

Berlusconi has mocked the protesters as puritans and moralizers, but Berlusconi may be a symbol, symptom and source of the public amorality that is damaging Italy.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Egypt III

I realize that it is unusual for people to be so excited about the fact that the military has taken over in Egypt as opposed to a civilian leadership. I suppose that there was nobody else who was really able to lead the state, but it still is very different from the ideals of progress to democracy.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


There are good reasons to call places by their foreign names in English, but there are also good reasons to use the English name, and people should realize this. That is why I do not like it when mug fools correct people for using the English name for a foreign place instead of a foreign name. However, in the American discussion about the situation in Egypt, only rarely was the Arabic name for Egypt, "Misr" used.

This is probably because when people insist that only the names of the countries in their own languages be used, they really do not care about people actually knowing anything about their country and how it is related to the rest of the world, as opposed to having fun by acting offended. However, Egyptians do not make a big deal about being from "Misr" instead of "Egypt" because they want people to know about the long history of Egypt and how it has influenced the rest of the world. They want to be proud of being Egyptian and they want people to spend money in Egypt as tourists.


I feel so sad for the people who have been hurt by the earthquakes this year in Pakistan and >Chile.


The people of Egypt will face a challenging but maybe rewarding path to freedom now that Hosni Mubarak has resigned as President.
I would like to defend the Obama's approach to the situation in Egypt. I believe he balanced well the need for the American government to do business in that country through a government on one side, and the long-term benefit to America and the world to do business with free, democratic countries as opposed to dictatorships.

In some cases, the right decision may be to support a dictatorship against its opponents by fighting with it or giving it money to fight those opponents. Egypt was not at this level. The foreign aid that went to Egypt was not really for the purpose of fighting opponents of the Egyptian government (although that foreign aid is still a way of supporting the government and at some point would have been inappropriate), and the remarks by Hillary Rodham CLinton about Egypt being "stable" (although by HILLARY, not by Barack), were also not assistance. It was diplomacy. It was a way to do business with the undemocratic Egyptian government, which is the right decision in other cases.

As the protests continued, it became more and more clear that it was not a good deal to business with the Egyptian government because it was so unpopular. At this point, the American government moved to a stage of encouraging the Egyptian government to change, which is right in some cases too.

The situation in Egypt did not reach the stage when the U.S. stopped doing business with Egypt, set up sanctions, or invaded it. All of these stages may be appropriate in extreme cases, but they were not in this case.

I wonder if Wael Ghonim, the man in Egypt who worked for Google and became a hero to the revolutionaries, will win a Nobel Prize?

Forgiveness Please

I am sorry about not having posted recently, but I was too nervous about having a lot of work to do and being a bad person.