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Archive for the ‘Velleitaire’ Category

The Stench of Modern Feminism

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By Velleitaire
Jan. 9, 2007

On the first day of my Writing and Rhetoric II class, my professor took us for a field trip to the bathroom… yes, the bathroom. We walked down the hallway and when we got to those bathroom doors he asked if we noticed anything different about them. I looked at the doors in front of me and all I could think to say was that they were opposite of each other, one opening to the left and the other to the right.

Apparently I was way off track. He looked at me, pointed to the doors and said,

“This one says men and this one says ladies.”

Well, of course. I had taken notice of this, but I really didn’t consider it to be of any real significance. He went on to ask,

“Well, why don’t they say men and women or ladies and gentleman?”

We then walked back to the classroom in order write about what we thought it meant. Was it significant? Why?

My mind was in a whirlwind. The topics he was getting at (gender sensitivity and feminism) are issues that get me a tad ticked off.

While I failed to voice my opinion in class, I did make sure to write what was on my mind. It seems like almost anything offends women these days, and it has become quite dangerous.

The question that stuck in my mind revolved around the hypocrisy of the whole thing. I mean, why are the very people who say we have to accept people for who they are so intolerant of people who don’t believe the way they do?

Here is a good example: The Vagina Monologues. Olivet College, where Paleo and I attend, is putting on a rendition of the Vagina Monologues this year. I guess they have done it for many years now.  But why is it that colleges like ours, and those all around the country, have no problem with The Vagina Monologues, but students have to be careful when talking about the Bible or religion in class? For that matter, why is it that the Women’s Resource Center has plenty of “safe sex” material and more than a handful of condoms for the taking, but finding pamphlets about abstinence or the dangers of abortion are almost non-existent?

All of this is really peculiar coming from Olivet College. Olivet was  founded as a Christian college. Just looking at the college’s sticker on my laptop I can clearly see the words, “Pro Christo Et Humanitate,” which is Latin meaning “For Christ and humanity.” The seal also has the word Torah in Hebrew! I can only wonder what the founders, and especially Father Shipherd, would say about the current state of affairs. More on that in my next post.

But let’s get back to the bathroom doors. I highly doubt that it was put there by some sort of egotistical womanizer who expressed his chauvinism by referring to women as ladies. The likelihood that the person intended to make women feel inferior to men by referring to them as ladies is rather slim.  Actually, I think it is kind of a compliment.

I am curious to know if anyone considered the possibility that it was done in good will. What if it was meant to make a woman feel respectable and dignified? Who really knows?

It’s one thing to fight for a woman’s right to be treated fair. It is another thing to take exception to being referred to as ladies rather than women on a bathroom door. As for me, I am glad they chose to refer to us as ladies. If only more began acting ladylike.


Economic Eugenics

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By Paleocrat
Dec. 27, 2008

Miss American Pie bids farewell to the Working Class Jack as companies downsize, outsource, and offshore those jobs once proudly (and efficiently) done by American men and women.

This once great nation of producers has run out of steam somewhere between Pauperism and the ghost town of the eternal Proletariat. Our microchips are now potato chips, while our manufactured goods have been traded in for Big Macs.

All the while our politicians and economists, market mystics through and through,  whistle away the day, trusting  that their prophecies of a glorious era ushered in by classical liberalism will come to pass. They can only cross their fingers in hope that the increasing amount of evidence against them is nothing more than a mirage or mere bump in the road to Utopia.

It is rather unfortunate that these mirages, these mere bumps in the road, happen to be known by neighbor and foreigner alike as American citizens. The young, the poor, and those without a college education, these are hit the worst. But so be it! Survival of the richest is the way of the day, and economic eugenics is en vogue.

In days gone by, young Americans performed these jobs. They did for years. Many of them treated these jobs as stepping stones to something better. Some found them to took them as career-worthy vocations. While many of these jobs may be tedious and redundant, they didn’t look half bad on a resume. And with wages superior to Taco Bell, these young ones were able to save up for a home, a higher education, or even retirement.

Tough luck, kiddos. These jobs are going the way of the dinosaur, and their tales will only be told by those begin their sentences with “back in the day.”

Then there are those “down and outs,” the American poor. These men and women are hit especially hard. Many of these people are willing to work long hours on a line, if for no other reasons than paying the bills and supplying basic needs for them and their children.

While these jobs don’t require the skill level of a doctor or a lawyer, they meet many people right where they are. Truth be told, not everyone has the skill level of a doctor or lawyer. And many of these Americans have no ability or opportunity to further their eduction. All they want is some food, clothing, shelter, and enough money to make sure the bills get paid.

Sorry, folks, the rich and famous care little about you. Out of mind, and definitely out of sight, save for the burdensome fly-by during an election year or photo shoot. Place your bets on the lottery. The odds are in its favor on this one.

Take as another example the rest of those without a great deal of formal education. Jobs of this nature were a way to feel the pride that accompanies work and private ownership. And this could be done without having a degree (or even diploma) on the wall. They may have gotten married right out of high school. Maybe there were difficulties they were unable to overcome in a high school or college setting. They may have come from a family without sufficient funds to send them to college. Maybe they simply wanted to dodge the bullet of student loans that so many of their peers spend years trying to pay off. Whatever the case may be, they had their reasons, good or bad, and now their hopes have been dashed to pieces by belligerent ideologues and fideistic advocates of the Austrian school.

And let us not forget the elderly. While I failed to mention them at the beginning of this piece, it would be foolish to ignore the impact downsizing, offshoring, and outsourcing has on many of them.

This age group has really hit hard times. Social Security just isn’t what it used to be. Health risks continually increase, adequate insurance becomes harder to find, and the money simply isn’t there. In many cases it is nothing other than the death of a loved one, leaving them with less money and mess of bills.

Unfortunately, many of these people find themselves back on the line, working tough hours. That is, if they haven’t found a comfortable place as a Walmart greeter or McDonald’s cashier. Any way we go with the scenario, it feels like a lose-lose to those who’ve already lived a life of hard work.

The young, the poor, the less educated, and the elderly. Each of these lack the fitness needed to survive the rough ad tumble of a global economy. So let them rot in the cesspool of a service economy.

This wouldn’t be so sick were it not for the fact that market mystics treat the situation as inevitable, as a sort of social determinism or economic fatalism. These people were just dealt a rough hand. Better luck next time, right?

Lost livelihoods are nothing more than collateral damage in the cut-throat pursuit of efficiency (i.e. the cheapest labor the world has to offer) and never-ending capital surplus. It’s only too bad that the financial fanatics and their political tools have such a difficult time putting a name, a face, and a sense of personhood with the laborers they are tossing to the wind.

Or maybe I am giving them too much credit? Maybe they know, but simply don’t care…

Noam Chomsky on Propaganda

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The point of public relations slogans like “Support our troops” is that they don’t mean anything. They mean as much as whether you support the people in Iowa. Of course, there was an issue. The issue was, Do you support our policy? But you don’t want people to think about that issue. That’s the whole point of propaganda. You want to create a slogan that nobody’s going to be against, and everybody’s going to be for. Nobody knows what it means, because it doesn’t mean anything. Its crucial value is that it diverts your attention from a question that does mean something.

Oooh, You Smell Like a Sexy Whopper

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By Velleitaire and Paleocrat
Dec. 21, 2008

Flame, the “newest” fragrance from Burger King (yes, Burger King), came out last Sunday. One wonders if it is a Christmas gimmick for stocking-stuffers.  So the next time you go out shopping for your special someone, don’t pass up a bottle of fragrance that “scent of seduction, with a hint of flame-broiled meat.” I’ll bet the farm that you’ll have you sweetheart begging to take a bite out of you… no,  literally, they’ll probably start watering at the mouth for Angus burgers or flame-broiled Whoppers.

And at the low price of $3.99 who can resist?  Then again, you could buy a Whopper for  $2.39 and rub it all over your body. I’m sure that will turn some heads… belonging to hungry, fat people.

Well, the King may be on to something here. The old saying is that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Although I highly doubt that whoever said that was thinking about meat scented cologne.

But none of this should come as a surprise to anyone familiar with the Big Food. The industry has been in cahoots with the International Flavors & Fragrances company (IFF), the world’s largest flavor company, for years in hope of creating the perfect scent otherwise referred to as artificial flavoring.

Think about it for a moment. Why is it that you can identify a Big Mac from halfway across the room? Same goes for their fries. It all makes sense once one realizes that up to 90 percent of flavor is actually on account of the aroma. No wonder  fast food chains work so closely with the same companies that create the most popular colognes and perfumed. It keeps them coming back.

The real question, then, is why it took so long for one of the Big Food giants to come out with a line of body-spray. That was a huge oversight. They should have learned from the experiment where men chose Cinnabon as their favorite perfume fragrance.

While most people probably see this as amusing, I think of it more in terms of… immoral, atrocious, or perhaps, down right evil. Obviously, this is just another tactic for these companies to brainwash us. What do you predict you’ll think about when someone walks by you or gives you a hug and their practically wearing liquid Whopper on their body? These people will be walking, wonderfully smelling advertisements for fast food!

So the next time you think Burger King is intellectually incompetent, you might want to think again. Trust me, they know exactly what they are doing… and it’s downright scary. But hey, at least it smells tasty.

Written by velleitaire

December 21, 2008 at 9:55 pm

Off-The-Cuff: A Real Police Standoff

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By Velleitaire and Paleocrat
Dec. 17, 2008

Sometimes the police can be a little… presumptuous. But this is just downright ridiculous.

For two nail-biting hours, police surrounded a closed bank in Montgomery, N.J., in an attempt to negotiate with what appeared to be a bank robber standing inside. The silent alarm at the bank had tipped them off, but it didn’t look like their was much action inside the building. The only thing they saw was a dark figure standing behind the blinded window. 

What were those robbers doing for two hours? The police wanted to know! So they tried making contact. They tried a number of times, but to no avail.

What to do? Send in SWAT, of course! That was the only logical thing to do. Obviously the robber is pretty crazy. I mean, he had been standing in the same place for two hours! Maybe he was a mastermind of thievery who tried tricking the cops by standing still? It works with bears, doesn’t it?

The pros busted through the door, aimed their laser-lit machine guns at the robber, and demanded that he (or she) hit the floor. But this guy must have been on some serious drugs because not even SWAT and their weapons could faze him. Nope, he just stood there like a lifeless piece of cardboard.

That must have been because he was a lifeless piece of cardboard. Yep, a human-sized cardboard cutout. So for two hours these police officers and SWAT members were in a hair-raising, adrenaline induced standoff with Mr. Cardboard Guy. 

I’m left with so many questions. Could they see the face? Did it look like Sen. John McCain? They sold life-size cutout of McCain at FYE during the election, right? Did the police ever wonder how this robber could stand in the same place for two hours? He didn’t move once! Not even an inch. That would have to be hard to do. Maybe they thought he was dead? But then why the SWAT? Too many questions… and all of them are far too obvious.

Thank God nobody got hurt. The only damage done was to the ego of police officers involved… and any journalist who may have thought they were covering a big story. 

Written by velleitaire

December 17, 2008 at 9:43 pm

Mr. Wizard Misses Mr. Snuffleupagus (3x’s fast)

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By Velleitaire and Paleocrat
Dec. 15, 2008

“Sir, how much for that woolly mammoth over there?”

I guess woolly mammoths have been extinct for a while now…or so I’ve read. Leave a woman at Green’s Tavern on “Boozeday Tuesday” and one may think otherwise. Then again, woolly mammoths typically had teeth and didn’t wear wife-beater undershirts splattered with week-old stains from coffee and Skoal chewing tobacco.

Crazy scientists announced that they have almost finished sequencing the genome of this wild, harry creature formally seen only in museums, movies, or dope houses on “the other side of the tracks.” Turns out, if these wild-eyed Dr. Wizards get their way, little Johnny Q. and Sally Sue may get to ride one of them at your nearest petting zoo.

Dale McFeatters, a class act of a syndicated columnist, thinks we owe it to Mr. Snuffleupagus to resurrect him and his pals from their icy tombs. McFeatters frames it in moral terms. This fellow believes that the mere fact that someone’s 1o,000-year-old  neanderthal relative hunted these monsters down with rocks and clubs all the way to extenction somehow requires modern humankind to give these beasts a “second chance.”

Have these people not seen Jurassic Park? The late Michael Crichton would have punched them in the face. What is the old saying? Mr. Snuffleupagus may have been cool to watch on TV, but don’t invite him over for dinner? Something like that… either way, this whole thing is crazy.