We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Wednesday, June 7. 2023
Purple haze. It's blocking out the sunshine, and causing itchy eyes
When Not to Treat Cancer - Taking a rational and statistical approach to a diagnosis can lead to better choices about treatment—which in some cases might mean not treating cancer at all.
Southern Poverty Law Center Adds Parental Rights Groups to ‘Hate Map’
When and How to Respond to Microaggressions
Irish Farmers Raise Alarm Over Government's Proposal To Kill Off 200,000 Cows
Potential For Catastrophic US Electric Grid Failures This Summer A Reality - A reliability assessment of the nation’s electrical grid shows increasing potential for blackouts during heat waves. Coal-fired power plants, the report states, are being retired before enough new generation sources are being put on the grid.
Divesting from Big Oil Is an Empty Gesture. California lawmakers want the state’s public pensions to get rid of fossil fuel stocks, claiming that will help save the planet. Who are they trying to kid?
Two of San Fran's largest hotels are bailing out
Target has been funding woke group that wants to close 'symbol of white supremacy' Mount Rushmore, demilitarize the US military and impose sanctions on Israel
Killer MS-13 gangsters are being bused into our communities as ‘minors’
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" Judge Says ‘GenderIdentity Is Real"
Well, maybe he could explain the physical basis for gender. I haven't found any.
Ray: Well, maybe he could explain the physical basis for gender.
Gender is the social, psychological, cultural and behavioral aspects of being a man, woman, or other gender identity.
Gender identity is the personal sense of one's own gender.
As such, gender identity is subjective (though there are cases with known physical correlates, such as androgen insensitivity syndrome).
A grammatical category, often designated as male, female, or neuter, used in the classification of nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and, in some languages, verbs that may be arbitrary or based on characteristics such as sex or animacy and that determines agreement with or selection of modifiers, referents, or grammatical forms.
The fact of being classified as belonging to such a category.
Either of the two divisions, designated female and male, by which most organisms are classified on the basis of their reproductive organs and functions; sex.
androgen insensitivity syndrome
Androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS) is a rare, inherited sexual development disorder that affects the development of a person's genitals and reproductive organs.23 People with AIS are genetically male but are insensitive to male sex hormones, resulting in mostly female external sex characteristics or signs of both male and female sexual development.1 There are two types of AIS: complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS) and partial androgen insensitivity syndrome (PAIS). AIS can cause problems during puberty and infertility.3 Pathogenesis is the result of mutations in the X-linked androgen receptor gene, which encodes for the ligand-activated androgen receptor.
The idea that a person can fantasize having a gender contrary to reality.
A severe mental condition in which thought and emotions are so affected that contact is lost with external reality.
mudbug: The idea that a person can fantasize having a gender contrary to reality.
There is a subtle interplay between the physical and psychological in humans, and there is a lot unknown, but, as noted above, we already know of several physical conditions that lead to gender identity issues, such as androgen insensitivity syndrome (AIS). People with AIS have the XY chromosome pair associated with males, but their bodies are resistant to male hormones, androgens. Consequently, they will tend to have some characteristics of females.
However, many people, especially those on the political right, can't empathize unless it affects them directly.
Motte: There are birth defects that result in mixed/unclear gender such as AIS. We should sympathize.
Bailey: Gender is subjective. People can choose whatever they want. We should celebrate.
eeyore: Motte: There are birth defects that result in mixed/unclear gender such as AIS. We should sympathize.
It means that there are at least some instances where people can have physical characteristics that differ from their gender identity—and, in the case of AIS, we have a good understanding of the mechanism. More specifically, it means hormone treatment may be beneficial.
eeyore: Bailey: Gender is subjective. People can choose whatever they want. We should celebrate.
Gender identity is subjective, but that doesn't mean it isn't part of a person's intrinsic psychological makeup. For instance, when did you decide on your gender identity? What if society told you that it was just a choice like whether to read Shakespeare or Grisham?
eeyore: Thank you for explicitly validating my point.
We suppose you are a cisgender male donkey, but that shouldn't prevent you from addressing the points raised.
It's really no more complicated than perceiving reality. One may want to be a different gender but wanting to is only that - wanting. One may believe he is a different gender against all physical evidence but that is a psychosis as I described above.
I don't expect any person who is not influenced by this gender ideology to be empathetic of people who honestly think they are "in the wrong body." I would hope they have sympathy, though. If your point was that people should be more sympathetic, I agree. People who honestly believe they have a different gender should be treated and helped to come to terms with reality. I have very little sympathy and no empathy for those who try to influence little kids to accept the notion they could be in the wrong body or have the wrong gender. The vast majority of people who think that have been influenced into that point of view. They did not come about it organically or by personal introspection. Those influencers of children are no different from people who prey on children for any other sexual reason.
I also don't expect people who believe that gender is fluid and non binary to have empathy for those who insist there are two genders. And a lot of them are not even sympathetic and show no respect for "cis gendered" people.
mudbug: It's really no more complicated than perceiving reality.
And, it turns out, reality doesn't necessarily conform to your prejudices. In any case, you ignored the point.
Consider someone who has partial androgen insensitivity syndrome (PAIS). They are born with XY chromosomes, but may have some male and some female characteristics. They may have an underdeveloped vagina or a penis with a hole at the base not the tip. They may develop a hernia due to the testicles not descending into the scrotum. Undescended testicles can represent a high cancer risk. Surgery can address these issues. If the testicles are removed, then hormones may be necessary to develop a more female body shape, otherwise, they may enter menopause and develop osteoporosis.
As far as gender identity, when did you choose your gender identity? Or is it a fundamental of your selfhood? People with PAIS may identify as male or female or something else.
Why is this relevant to this discussion? Because the law at issue would prevent necessary medical care for these individuals. You may not like it, but, in a free country, this is an issue for patients and parents of minor children in consultation with their doctors. Life is hard enough already without "small government conservatives" interjecting their legal mandates into often difficult medical decisions.
‘Gender Identity Is Really a mental illness and should be treated as such. Drugs and surgery in the to affirm this mental illness is medical malpractice and should be prosecuted.
You can have as many genders as you want.
But there are only two sexes.
Chris Christie declared he is running for president under the banner of ending the division of America and then spent two hours dividing America because of his Trump derangement syndrome. It is politicians like Christie who screwed the Republicans in 2020 and 2022. Now he is determined to make sure the GOP loses in 2024.
"Microaggressions are defined as verbal, behavioral, and environmental indignities that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative racial slights and insults to the target person or group. "
This from the article that begins by saying "discussions will in all likelihood be very uncomfortable — not just for white employees and leaders who might be confronting their privilege for the first time"
These people are clueless or intentionally racist.
The smoke from Canada is here in southern New England. The air smells like coffee.
I have read articles that propose, for example, that prostate cancer screening in men is unnecessary, for various reasons. The test costs pennies, and is normally rolled up with normal checkups for men over 50 or so. The arguments seem to me to be naked cost-saving measures, or tall-forehead statistical arguments similar to this lady's, made by people that aren't sick.
I think these kinds of spins - that certain deadly diseases are better left untreated, or perhaps even untested - are highly dangerous, because of the risk that special interests might have, in making the stories seem more plausible. Insurance companies, for instance, or over-subscribed hospitals - a chronic condition, these days.
Care is always rationed, or at least in some way, regulated. The rationing begins when a doctor tells you the next time he wants to see you, for example. Or when an insurance company negotiates examination / testing / treatment schedules with some of the big health organizations, which then become a kind of de-facto standard for the rest.
As always, I am reminded that the patient's responsibility is to himself, and it always helps to have a family member take up as your advocate. Not just in the sense of Medical POA's and so forth, but having someone at the hospital, onsite, arguing for you. My sister and I saw it over and over again, each time our mom was hospitalized. You have to take ownership and actively work at it - but it will make a big difference.
I've always been fascinated by the difference between the way the medical community approaches breast cancer and prostate cancer. It is as if they are okay with men dying from prostate cancer.
John - we're going the prostate cancer journey as a family, and it's been interesting. It is my understanding that many prostate cancers are very slow-growing, so that a man can have this and live long enough without treatment to die of other causes. And, given the removal or other treatment of the prostate has serious consequences in terms of bodily functions, there are times when a "wait and watch" regime is definitely the best for the patient. If, however, a fast-growing cancer is detected, treatment will be initiated quickly.
We were told early on that there is no comparison between breast and prostate cancer; breast cancer is always aggressive and has to be treated quickly and using multiple treatments while prostate cancer can mosey on quietly for a long time and never be an issue.
SPOT ON, SIR!
My surgical chief used to say that there are three kinds of lies: Lies, damn lies, and statistics.
So, what does it mean to an individual with Stage 3 cancer if they are told that the 5 year survival is 60%?
Consider two boys, Joe and Don. Don can do 10 push ups and Joe can do zero. Their average is 5 - a mathematical fact, but meaningless when applied to the individual.
When we say the 5 year survival for Stage 3 cancer is 60%, that doesn't mean the survival of a particular patient is 60%. It means the average survival for the cohort is 60%. But doctors will misspeak and tel an individual that his or her chances of survival are 60%. This is essentially malpractice as it means the doctor has not truly provided informed consent, but has misinformed the patient.
The SPLC was originally a money grabbing grift. It is now a money grabbing grift and "arm" of the DNC.
You will often hear a pundit or political candidate state that what America wants/needs is a moderate. I think at some level everyone understands that and the tendency for both sides to convince you that the other side is radical scares you into just wanting someone who is normal. But the recent debt limit fight illustrates the problem with a "moderate" when they are forced to negotiate policy with radicals. McCarthy got rick rolled. He got some concessions from the Democrats and from his position as a moderate he thought he got a reasonable compromise. But he is like the naive shopper going to a furniture store with a huge "going out of business" banner in the front window. They do get 50% off but the price was boosted by 100% before they ever got there. This is your future with "moderate" GOP politicians. And, worse, when they get fleeced and get called on it they will be angry with you for not appreciating all they did to get this brokered compromise.
The Republicans had one opportunity to do something meaningful about the debt and the spending and they screwed the pooch. Now they want to push a "moderate" presidential candidate on us.
Anon: But the recent debt limit fight illustrates the problem with a "moderate" when they are forced to negotiate policy with radicals.
Sure. It's radical to threaten to blow up the American and global economies to force changes to the budget they can't pass through the normal political process. The way to move forward is to convince the American public of the necessity of enacting a more rational fiscal policy. As it is now, the American people want their social programs AND their tax cuts. They want their cake and eat it too.
12 million tax dollars down the drain.
If the Irish farmers are concerned about plans to cull their herds in the name of saving the planet, they'd better be stockpiling weapons. Governments world-wide are showing rather openly that they don't give a rat's patootie about their citizens or what they want. And as governments go authoritarian, it attracts the sociopaths to government so it just gets worse. When a man is advancing on you with a machete telling you he intends to cut your head off, you don't waste time trying to bargain with him. Governments are pretty open about their intent to deprive you of electricity and food. what more do they need to do to convince you that they seriously intend to kill you?
Regarding the future of AI, etc. We should consider the following:
Sorry the last link does not work. Try this one:
re NYT goes after ethanol
If corn ethanol subsidies are to end, the democrats must do it.
The GOP can't afford to lose farm state votes. OTOH the Dems could punish the hated Red States by ending ethanol subsidies.
I have noticed less corn being planted in our area. Farmers seem to be planting soybeans rotated with small grains as I suspect that they are choosing small grains because of fertilizer costs for corn.
Zack just admitted that gender is all in your head. It's imaginary. Since gender is imaginary, how can gender identity be real?
Ray: just admitted that gender is all in your head.
Lots of things are in your head: a mother's desire to nurture her children, the pain of a hot poker in the eye, the sexual desire for the opposite sex, a preference for Shakespeare over Grisham, eeyore's feeling of maleness. Only one of these is a simple choice. The rest are, for most people, inescapable facets of being.
But most people don't claim that what is in their head is physical reality.
Ray: But most people don't claim that what is in their head is physical reality.
Most transsexuals are quite aware of the reality of their bodies. If you were to suddenly wake up in the body of the opposite sex, would you merely adopt the gender identity of your new body. Most people wouldn’t. They would still feel like a man, but in a woman’s body; or they would still feel like a woman, but in a man’s body.
See the discussion above concerning androgen insensitivity syndrome. There are sometimes ambiguities even in the physical aspects of sex, much less accounting for the even more complex issues of gender identity.
It's a serious mistake to think that, just because there's a word for a concept, that there must be a corresponding thing in the real world. Gender is about as real as unicorns.
Ray: Gender is about as real as unicorns.
Gender is usually defined in this context as "the social, psychological, cultural and behavioral aspects of being a man, woman, or other gender identity." These are certainly observable or inferable phenomena.
You probably mean gender identity, the personal sense of one's own gender. In fact, most people do have a feeling of gender identity, and most of these people are cisgender, a person whose gender identity corresponds with the sex assigned to them at birth. Or are you saying there is no such thing as to feel like a man or to feel like a woman.
Gender is imaginary so "gender identity" is imaginary identity which is an oxymoron.
Ray: Gender is imaginary so "gender identity" is imaginary identity which is an oxymoron.
Ignoring the point doesn't make it go away.
I wasn't aware you were making any point. I asked what is the physical basis for gender. I expect you to answer, the physical basis for gender is "blank" and you fill in the blank. Instead, you keep going off on a tangent that is irrelevant. I'm not your mother and I don't want to hear about your or somebody else's feelings. You have answered every question I never asked.
Ray: I asked what is the physical basis for gender.
You have to start with what gender means in context, "the social, psychological, cultural and behavioral aspects of being a man, woman, or other gender identity." Do you understand what culture and behavior mean?
Ray: I don't want to hear about your or somebody else's feelings.
Then we assume you retract your previous statement about gender identity, which concerns how people see themselves.
Zach still fails to answer the question. There's an old saying, "if you can't dazzle them with your brilliance, then baffle them with your BS."
Ray: I asked what is the physical basis for gender.
Again. Gender refers to the cultural and behavioral aspects of being a man or woman, not physical anatomy. So, your question is ill-formed because it doesn’t relate to the meaning of the word, like asking how wet is green.
Again, Zach fails to answer the question and goes off on a tangent.
We answered. Let us know when you wish to actually engage in a discussion.