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Source: (consider it) Thread: What are we going to do about men in politics?
lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:

Maybe men are less empathetic than women, so the threshold at which we stop caring that someone might not want to see a picture of our genitalia is lower. How you answer that question will affect what you think the solution is,

It is impossible to answer without changing the way society views women and power.

quote:

and it's hard to answer it without considering the case of women-on-men abuse.

Again, a lot of this is within the framework that women are complaining about. Solve the real problem and it solves for everyone.

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If it's not here soon, I might be done
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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
It is impossible to answer without changing the way society views women and power.

OK, so let's do that.

quote:
Again, a lot of this is within the framework that women are complaining about. Solve the real problem and it solves for everyone.

Not really sure what you're getting at.

ISTM that one reason why harassment is rife in Westminster is the enormous power differential between MPs and their aides. So reducing the power differential would reduce harassment for both men and women.

The power differential was created by men. But even if it was created by women, we would still need to reduce it.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
It is impossible to answer without changing the way society views women and power.

OK, so let's do that.
Join the feminist movement. We've been working on this for a while.
quote:

Not really sure what you're getting at.


What I am getting at is that not only do abuses need to be addressed and stop being tolerated, but the power imbalance between men and women needs to end. Women need truly equal access to jobs and power.

It is akin to racism; just aiming to stop further occurrence doesn't fix all the harm done nor does it set a path for true equality.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Ohher
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quote:
Originally posted by Leorning Cniht:
quote:
Originally posted by Ohher:
I agree this is, if a trend, an ominous reaction. It is also faulty logic. Our workplace categories now include not only women and men, but also straights and gays and bi and trans, etc. So segregating the sexes protects no one from anything.

The men who do this are publicly known to be straight (generally, they would have rather strong religious objections to anything else), so they consider themselves "at risk" - either to being overcome with lust, misunderstood, have false allegations made against them or whatever - when in the company of a woman, but not when with a man.
I grasp the so-called thought process (if we want to call it that), Leorning Cniht. I am simply pointing out that it's flawed.

The 'publicly known' sexual preferences of any given individual are not always perfectly congruent with private realities.

False accusations, AFAIK, are fairly rare. Such rare instances could as readily come from a male subordinate as a female one. The contemporary workplace is, if sufficiently populous, likely to contain individuals 'publicly known' to be bi, gay, or straight.

That's the logical failure. Women are not necessarily safer alone with other women. Men are not necessarily safer alone with other men. Men who basically mistrust women simply prefer to imagine they are. It's bullshit.

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From the Land of the Native American Brave and the Home of the Buy-One-Get-One-Free

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Ricardus
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
Women need truly equal access to jobs and power.

But I don't think anyone has actually denied that.

The point that I am getting at, though, is that if you have a situation where men and women both have equal access to high-powered roles (such as MPs), but there is still a huge power imbalance between managers and staff, then it's not clear that you wouldn't just be creating more opportunities for female-on-male harassment.

IOW, I absolutely agree we need to address the power imbalance between men and women, but we also need to address power imbalances more generally in the workplace.

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Then the dog ran before, and coming as if he had brought the news, shewed his joy by his fawning and wagging his tail. -- Tobit 11:9 (Douai-Rheims)

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Golden Key
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Ricardus--

quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
The point that I am getting at, though, is that if you have a situation where men and women both have equal access to high-powered roles (such as MPs)...

Do they?

Dunno about the UK. But the US Congress is still mostly men. And, AIUI, there are relatively few female CEOs here.

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Ohher:
The contemporary workplace is, if sufficiently populous, likely to contain individuals 'publicly known' to be bi, gay, or straight.

That's the logical failure.

I think you have a logical failure - you are transferring statistical properties of a group of people to an individual member of that group.

Consider a man who refuses to be alone with women. Let's call him Mike.

Mike knows that Mike is straight. Mike knows that everyone believes Mike to be straight. The consequence of this is that Mike knows that the public will see him working late with a male aide as nothing more than a politician hard at work. Mike also knows that he will not be enticed to stray with the young man from his office, because he knows he's not gay.

On the other hand, Mike knows that if he is frequently seen "working late" with a young woman, tongues are going to wag. He also knows that there is a chance that he will entertain impure thoughts about the young woman if he spends significant time alone with her.

It's not the young man or young woman's sexuality that's relevant, it's Mike's. And we assume that Mike knows that.

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saysay

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quote:
Originally posted by Ohher:
quote:
Originally posted by LutheranChik:
One ominous reaction to the current calling out of lecherous males is that some men are retaliating by refusing to interact one on one with women in the workplace.

I agree this is, if a trend, an ominous reaction. It is also faulty logic. Our workplace categories now include not only women and men, but also straights and gays and bi and trans, etc. So segregating the sexes protects no one from anything.
I'm not convinced that this is retaliation so much as people adopting rules they think they probably should have adopted long ago. It's also not a completely new trend - it's been happening on college campuses for at least a decade. Along with the redefinition of sexual harassment and sexual assault to include "lesser" or different offenses came an increase in penalties for people accused of so much as saying something mildly inappropriate to a student. I posted an article in the Trigger Warning thread that I believe covers some of the Title IX absurdities that have arisen of late (I can post more, but it seems a bit off topic). I know a lot of male professors who stopped having one on one meetings with female students (even with the door open, and people walking by, as they used to do back in my day) a long time ago. Still others stopped having one on one meetings with any students. I think it's a shame, because I had some good conversations with professors that I likely wouldn't have had with another student in the room, and I think the open door provided enough protection, but it's not an unreasonable reaction to the current environment. (I also knew female professors who absolutely would not have closed door meeting with certain male students, even though the male students seemed to expect them and they might have done otherwise if the students had been female).

As to whether or not it's an ominous reaction to the current trend of calling out harassers: how many of Weinstein's victims mentioned being asked to meet with him and being initially wary but reassured that there was a woman with them, who left before the harassment began? While I know it's possible to harass someone in full view of others (there have been multiple cases of this that have been in the news recently, from Taylor Swift being grabbed by a DJ to George HW Bush grabbing women during photos), and that some predators are unlikely to be stopped by any measures, are there enough allegations where the harassment seems like an opportunity crime to make such precautions reasonable?

quote:
False accusations, AFAIK, are fairly rare. Such rare instances could as readily come from a male subordinate as a female one.
No one knows how many false accusations there are. I'm not sure there's even any good data on how many sexual harassment allegations of any kind there are, as even if they are reported to a company (which appears to be rare), they are unlikely to be reported to anyone else. Here's a piece discussing some of the flaws with the oft-repeated truism that there are very few false rape accusations. While it's not the exact same topic, I imagine many of the same issues would arise in any analysis of sexual harassment accusations.

As to whether or not such rare false accusations could as easily come from a male subordinate as a female one - I'm not sure of that. I agree that may very well be true if the superior is either gay or of the opposite sex, but since I'm fairly certain most sexual harassment occurs between people who might otherwise be appropriate romantic or sexual partners (if they lacked the power relationship), my guess is that any sort of accusation (true or false) is less likely to come from a heterosexual same sex subordinate than it is to come from one of the opposite sex. But as far as I know there are no stats on this.

quote:
The contemporary workplace is, if sufficiently populous, likely to contain individuals 'publicly known' to be bi, gay, or straight.

That's the logical failure. Women are not necessarily safer alone with other women. Men are not necessarily safer alone with other men. Men who basically mistrust women simply prefer to imagine they are. It's bullshit.

Necessarily safe? No. As with sexual assault and rape, there is absolutely nothing that anyone can do which will eliminate all risk, including avoiding being voluntarily alone with someone of the opposite sex. However, given the relatively small numbers of gay, bi, and trans people in the general population, and given the infrequency of either sexual harassment or sexual harassment accusations that are counter to at least one of the parties' sexual preference, avoiding being alone with someone of the opposite sex would probably greatly reduce the risk for most people.

Someone elsewhere recently proposed that any work-related closed door meeting with a lone person should be a fireable offense. He was quickly shouted down. While I wouldn't take it so far as to make it a fireable offense, I don't think it would be a bad policy for companies/offices/etc. to discourage such things. Of course it wouldn't eliminate sexual harassment (I've had inappropriate things said to me while standing in the door of someone's cubicle) but it might very well reduce the more dramatic instances and any number of opportunity crimes. I can't be the only one who's sick and tired of justifying why I don't necessarily want to be alone with anyone I just met, don't know particularly well, or who just creeps me out for reasons I can't put my finger on. I think getting away from the assumption that a wariness to be alone behind closed doors with someone is a problem would generally be a good thing. I've never discussed something with a boss or colleague that couldn't have been discussed in a semi-private location or a room with lots of windows.

But I'm thinking of starting another thread to talk more generally about some of the topics that tend to get nixed as acceptable topics in these kinds of threads (as they did in the Weinstein thread, and it seems they may also be in this thread, which started as a thread about men in politics and what we should do about them).

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I'll tell you all about it when I see you again"
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mr cheesy
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I think there is a danger of things getting out of hand.

For example, in the paper today there is a story about an MP who touched the knee of a journalist. The MP admitted it was inappropriate, the journalist has said that there were sharp words at the time but that she didn't think it particularly significant or important.

It seems to me that there are things that are undoubtedly happening in Westminster - such as daily drunkenness, bawdy behaviour, casual misogyny - without raking up someone touching someone else's knee.

Far more serious it seems to me are the stories that circulate about workers complaining about MP's bullying behaviour and nobody doing anything about it.

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arse

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Golden Key
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
It is impossible to answer without changing the way society views women and power.

OK, so let's do that.
Join the feminist movement. We've been working on this for a while.

[Smile] [Overused]

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Barnabas62
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Can't we join forces to oppose social condoning of the abuse of power? I'm NE working class, grew up knowing what it meant to be put down for where you came from, not who you were. An experience which made me intuitively supportive of various civil rights movements. All prejudice tastes the same when you're on the receiving end of it. And most of it is based on instinctive pecking order assumptions, whether related to gender, tribe, social status.

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:

Except when you say it, you don't seem to think it applies to women in positions of power.

Incorrect.
quote:

I'm also not disagreeing with you that it's mainly men in positions of power. But I am also saying, and you appear to be denying, that subordinate men also suffer abuse under that system.

Not even close.
I am saying that subordinate men suffer abuse because of the system men set up. Fixing the problem requires addressing the general power imbalance as well as not accepting individual cases of abuse.

I am literally not disagreeing with what you're posting.

And yet you feel the need to school me. It's as if you believe a mere man can't quite comprehend what a fucked-up system the Patriarchy is for most men. Trust me, I get it.

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Forward the New Republic

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
Can't we join forces to oppose social condoning of the abuse of power? I'm NE working class, grew up knowing what it meant to be put down for where you came from, not who you were. An experience which made me intuitively supportive of various civil rights movements. All prejudice tastes the same when you're on the receiving end of it. And most of it is based on instinctive pecking order assumptions, whether related to gender, tribe, social status.

Unfortunately I don't think this is a class thing, misogyny is endemic in working-class communities. One can be entirely "right-on" with regard to various progressive causes and horrible to women.

And I don't think it is just about power - or at least it isn't always. MPs shagging secretaries is a bit of a game* in many different sectors of society.

It's problematic when people pick their sexual partners from the pool of people they work with, it is much more worrying when people feel like they have to trade sexual favours to progress in any career.

I dunno, it's messed up. Can't everyone just keep their hands to themselves?

* not saying it should be

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arse

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Erroneous Monk
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
I think there is a danger of things getting out of hand.

For example, in the paper today there is a story about an MP who touched the knee of a journalist. The MP admitted it was inappropriate, the journalist has said that there were sharp words at the time but that she didn't think it particularly significant or important.

It seems to me that there are things that are undoubtedly happening in Westminster - such as daily drunkenness, bawdy behaviour, casual misogyny - without raking up someone touching someone else's knee.

Far more serious it seems to me are the stories that circulate about workers complaining about MP's bullying behaviour and nobody doing anything about it.

I think I'm with you on that. I think that:

(a) there is a spectrum of behaviour, illustrated in the range of acts/offences that have been alleged against Harvey Weinstein; but

(b) there are also instances of inappropriate behaviour that are not on that spectrum. I do not believe that every man who has made an inappropriate comment to me in the workplace would, if unchecked, go on to commit sexual assault. I *do* think that most of those men, given enough drink and circumstances would go further than inappropriate comments, but I also think that 90+% of those men would actively choose, therefore, not to drink that much in circumstances where their behaviour could become dangerous.

I don't want to see the really big issues - sexual assault, sexual harassment of the kind that derails careers and leads victims to make choices that limit their own lives so as to avoid further harassment - getting buried under a lot of hands on knees and "nice tits" comments, which would allow men to say it's all trivial.

The cultural issue and the power imbalance is massive, and not trivial at all. Sexual assault and harassment are not trivial.

A male colleague commenting audibly on the size of my "melons" (yes, that happened) is - relatively speaking - trivial.

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And I shot a man in Tesco, just to watch him die.

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:

And I don't think it is just about power - or at least it isn't always. MPs shagging secretaries is a bit of a game* in many different sectors of society.

I meant to type men not MPs. I think there is a level of hypocrisy and virtue signalling going on by some men who are trying to distance themselves from bad behaviour to distract from their own questionable ethics.

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arse

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Erroneous Monk:


I don't want to see the really big issues - sexual assault, sexual harassment of the kind that derails careers and leads victims to make choices that limit their own lives so as to avoid further harassment - getting buried under a lot of hands on knees and "nice tits" comments, which would allow men to say it's all trivial.

The cultural issue and the power imbalance is massive, and not trivial at all. Sexual assault and harassment are not trivial.

A male colleague commenting audibly on the size of my "melons" (yes, that happened) is - relatively speaking - trivial.

FFS. This just drives me nuts - where the fuck where these men brought up? In what world is it funny or banter to talk to someone else about their body parts? I just don't understand.

I am not a paragon of virtue. But I can't imagine ever smirking to someone else about their body.

Nope. Sorry I'm a liar, I once asked someone about a tattoo. I hadn't even thought until now that it might have been inappropriate.
[Hot and Hormonal]

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arse

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Barnabas62
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:

Unfortunately I don't think this is a class thing,

Didn't say it way

quote:
misogyny is endemic in working-class communities.
Didn't say it wasn't
quote:
One can be entirely "right-on" with regard to various progressive causes and horrible to women.
e.g Stokely Carmichael

quote:
And I don't think it is just about power - or at least it isn't always. MPs shagging secretaries is a bit of a game* in many different sectors of society.
Would it happen without the power structure?

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Who is it that you seek? How then shall we live? How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?

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mr cheesy
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You are right, I was musing not accusing. I should have written it as a separate post.

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arse

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
Would it happen without the power structure?

Yes. People without much power routinely abuse each other.

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arse

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Erroneous Monk
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:


Nope. Sorry I'm a liar, I once asked someone about a tattoo. I hadn't even thought until now that it might have been inappropriate.
[Hot and Hormonal]

After a bit of self-examination, I have to admit that I've done it (commented audibly on the physique of a male colleague in an inappropriate way in the pub). But while "all have sinned and fallen short" may be helpful to us in our relationship with God, I'm not sure it helps us take action about a serious problem.

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And I shot a man in Tesco, just to watch him die.

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by Erroneous Monk:

After a bit of self-examination, I have to admit that I've done it (commented audibly on the physique of a male colleague in an inappropriate way in the pub). But while "all have sinned and fallen short" may be helpful to us in our relationship with God, I'm not sure it helps us take action about a serious problem.

I suppose it helps in two ways; first that maybe one can discuss physique without being offensive (no indication that the person I spoke with was offended - he seemed to want to talk about his tats) and second that maybe things are more/less offensive in different contexts, so maybe there isn't a simple line which-shouldn't-be-crossed.

All of that said, I think I need to think some more about inappropriate things I might have said to people in the past.

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arse

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
I think there is a danger of things getting out of hand.

.... without raking up someone touching someone else's knee.

Excuse the cynicism; but I presume this story was picked by the media in order to trigger that particular response (next week we'll no doubt see articles in the Spectator about how you can't say hello to a woman any longer and it's all the fault of pickle kreckness).
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quetzalcoatl
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I'm sure I've said tons of inappropriate stuff to both men and women in the past, and had a lot said to me. I remember when my wife in one office would have comments made on the fit of her new bra, and that was considered normal.

In factories, comments about one's dick needing a micrometer to be measured, and so on. Again, normal. It seemed quite funny also.

I'm not going to start trawling through all this, I don't see the point.

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the main fear that flat-earthers face is sphere itself.

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Kwesi
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A certain cussedness, world weariness, dislike of being swept along by waves of moralism, and resistance to Phariseeism prompt me to detach myself from the current maelstrom of righteous indignation at the egregious behaviour of British politicians, despite the fact I'm against sin and believe steps should be taken to reduce its instances and consequences. Is it really necessary for shipmates to declare themselves against the abuse of human beings? I think not.

I think it more important to ask the political questions: Who is behind the publication of the list of malefactors? Why has it been published now? What agenda is it designed to promote?

It would appear that the perpetrator of the disclosure is "Guido Fawkes", an independent Conservative website of a nihilistic disposition and its contents have been well-publicised by the Tory press, The Daily Mail and The Sun leading the charge. This combination also played an important role in publicising the MP expenses scandal. What are they up to? It hardly helps to sustain a Conservative administration wresting with Brexit.

On the current charges my only observation is that the knee-groping incident during a TVs interview was less a sexual assault than an attempt at a patronising put-down: "Don't worry your pretty little head about these political matters, leave it to daddy and his friends." Male friends, of course.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Kwesi:
I think it more important to ask the political questions: Who is behind the publication of the list of malefactors? Why has it been published now? What agenda is it designed to promote?

Factional maths within the Tory party.
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Doc Tor
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The Tories can afford to lose precisely one MP to this. Any more than one, and the game is up.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
The Tories can afford to lose precisely one MP to this. Any more than one, and the game is up.

Well, perhaps some of the no-dealers believe this works to their advantage? Crash the government, maximum chaos, Britain runs out of time and exits without a deal, and they get to blame the other side for any consequences.
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Doc Tor
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Some people just want to watch the world burn.

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chris stiles
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
Some people just want to watch the world burn.

They just pragmatically value party over country, and skin over both.
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quetzalcoatl
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I think it will also get trivialized into 'MP puts hand on girl's knee', so that it can be dismissed. Wait for the tabloids to start on this soon - I can't even look at a girl now, without the political correctness brigade hauling me up.

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the main fear that flat-earthers face is sphere itself.

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Brenda Clough
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(sigh)
Look at women all you want, Quetz. Perfectly allowable, and in fact unless you seclude yourself in the desert like St. Simon it's inevitable. Women are in public and we're not going away, and burquas or complete purdah are not on.
What's not allowable is, essentially, obtruding your interests upon the lady's notice. Thus, no hooting, catcalls, groping pussy, waving, lewd gestures, whistling, making slobbering noises, etc. Nor is it allowable to take cell phone photos of her -- her image is under her own control. The sole exception (since today is Halloween) is if she is dressed like Wolverine or something, in which case a comment "Nice blades!" is always appropriate. But short skirts, a bit of decolletage -- nope. Don't ogle, don't photograph, don't touch.
So lust away! But only in your heart. Don't let me hear about it.

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Science fiction and fantasy writer with a Patreon page

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quetzalcoatl
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Well, that was meant to be a quote from a tabloid trivializing abuse. Hence, the comment, 'wait for the tabloids to start on this soon'. I should have put quote marks in.

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the main fear that flat-earthers face is sphere itself.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
Can't we join forces to oppose social condoning of the abuse of power? I'm NE working class, grew up knowing what it meant to be put down for where you came from, not who you were. An experience which made me intuitively supportive of various civil rights movements. All prejudice tastes the same when you're on the receiving end of it. And most of it is based on instinctive pecking order assumptions, whether related to gender, tribe, social status.

I do wish your reaction to your experience were more universal. Instead, people are more likely to see their own group's suffering as being special and unrelated.
quote:
Originally posted by Ricardus:
quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
Women need truly equal access to jobs and power.

But I don't think anyone has actually denied that.

The point that I am getting at, though, is that if you have a situation where men and women both have equal access to high-powered roles (such as MPs),

But they don't. It is getting better, but still not good. And government isn't just the MPs. It is the whole structure below that administrates.
quote:

but there is still a huge power imbalance between managers and staff, then it's not clear that you wouldn't just be creating more opportunities for female-on-male harassment.

That balancing the access would create more opportunities for female-on-male (And female-on-female) abuse is a fact. Whether it would increase the occurrence is a matter of debate. In my opinion and experience, when women achieve true equality, there will be a greater parity of abuse. There really isn't any of us that are better than the rest.
quote:

IOW, I absolutely agree we need to address the power imbalance between men and women, but we also need to address power imbalances more generally in the workplace.

Which is what I have been trying to say, though I've stated it in reverse order to you.

quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
I am literally not disagreeing with what you're posting.

Except there is the bit that you imply that I don't think women use power to abuse.
quote:

And yet you feel the need to school me. It's as if you believe a mere man can't quite comprehend what a fucked-up system the Patriarchy is for most men. Trust me, I get it.

I don't think it is a fucked up system for most men. Power, yes; patriarchy, no. What I am saying is slightly different. The power differential, and the acceptance of abuse within it, disadvantages everyone who does not have power. Women are disadvantaged more greatly because patriarchy is integrated into the current power structures. Men who are abused suffer from patriarchy as well because they are treated as less than a man. IOW; a woman.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
I don't think it is a fucked up system for most men.

No, of course not. We stand there at war memorials on 11 November remembering the men who died. Died in their tens, hundreds of thousands. No, not fucked up them at all.

And then there's the countless millions taught not to cry, to settle arguments with the fists, to play sports they have no aptitude for, to turn away from books, the arts, to be manly and not sissy and for God's sake, conform. That's not fucked up either.

And then there's the culture of 'breadwinning' that takes men out of the home and away from their children, to see childcare as something that women do, to become estranged from their own kids' lives until they become strangers because they never see each other. No, definitely not fucked up for most men whatsoever. Most of us men have got it peachy and we don't want to change it.

[Roll Eyes]

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Forward the New Republic

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
I don't think it is a fucked up system for most men.

No, of course not. We stand there at war memorials on 11 November remembering the men who died. Died in their tens, hundreds of thousands. No, not fucked up them at all.
And they would have felt better dying if women had died along side them? War would have been OK, then?
quote:

And then there's the countless millions taught not to cry, to settle arguments with the fists, to play sports they have no aptitude for, to turn away from books, the arts, to be manly and not sissy and for God's sake, conform. That's not fucked up either.

This is fucked up, but I am still not sure this is most males. And it is more complicated than just patriarchy. And conformity? Yeah, that is a male only problem.
quote:

And then there's the culture of 'breadwinning' that takes men out of the home and away from their children, to see childcare as something that women do, to become estranged from their own kids' lives until they become strangers because they never see each other.

Paging Charles Dickens, Mr. Dickens please come to the front desk.
This is not true of very many families that I encounter. Yeah, without your hyperbole, some. And definitely more in poorer areas. But there is a lot more than patriarchy going on there.

We were talking about politics in particular and workplace in general.

If you want to bash patriarchy in general, I'm more with you than against. What we seem to have a disagreement on is how much men suffer from it. You seem to be implying a closer parity between men and women on this than I think is merited.

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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betjemaniac
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
The Tories can afford to lose precisely one MP to this. Any more than one, and the game is up.

It's not though is it? Because that's why Andrea Leadsom said yesterday in the house that malefactors will be thrown out of the party rather than just suspended. Which makes it nuclear - setting the bar for the other parties - and precisely why they've taken that line.

Virtually all of this behaviour on all sides is an open secret at Westminster - hence Sturgeon's glum statement yesterday that she expects the SNP to suffer fallout as well. And why the Labour party aren't going hammer and tongs on the allegations against Tories.

More to the point all the parties pretty much know the dirt on the MPs of the other parties, but they essentially have left each party to police its own MPs on the grounds of Mutually Assured Destruction.

The way this is currently playing out we could be in line for a proper Expenses Scandal style clearing of the stables. If Tory members start dropping like flies then it's only a matter of time before the Labour dirt becomes public and they're forced to follow suit.....

Then it will be more a question of which MPs (and how many) from which parties are standing down in marginals rather than safe seats. Historic trends would tend to suggest that if your dodgy bloke tries to cling on then they can lose a safe seat. If they're replaced then the party (any colour) will usually keep a safe seat.

So it's not game over (provided a General Election can be avoided) so much as a potentially enormous headache for everyone (regardless of the colour of their rosette).

It's pretty bad, but every party leader* has probably got their fingers crossed at the moment I think. I would also suggest that now that the Tories have said there will be automatic expulsions every other party will have a good idea of how many MPs it's going to lose from it's own current tally - because this goes wider than the Conservatives.

Then it comes down to which ones stand down to cause by-elections vs continuing to sit without the whip. If enough take the latter route then the maths doesn't change. If some do and some don't then it's even more complicated mathematically and will be down to *which* MPs where cause by-elections, and who fights them under the colour of the current incumbent party.

Far from game over, I think it's about to get even more interesting, and possibly even less moral, than it already was.

*with the exception of the Greens - not because they're any more moral than the other parties but simply because as long as Caroline Lucas hasn't done anything silly (and there's no suggestion that she has) then they haven't got anything to worry about as she's their only MP! I like the Greens, I voted for them last time round.

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And is it true? For if it is....

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mr cheesy
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Ye gods, I hadn't even thought of that.

A couple of MPs standing down, causing a by-election and their parties losing seats could be enough to cause the government to fall.

Eeek.

[ 31. October 2017, 15:43: Message edited by: mr cheesy ]

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arse

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betjemaniac
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
Ye gods, I hadn't even thought of that.

A couple of MPs standing down, causing a by-election and their parties losing seats could be enough to cause the government to fall.

Eeek.

Much as it pains me to say it, and potentially it's only because they've got no other options, I think the Tories have played an astute political game here - saying to all the other parties:

"we're going to fire anyone that is exposed for wrongdoing on this, so so are all of you."

and, like I said, every party will know which of the other parties' rocks to look under to help the process along if their own side is "suffering unduly."

[ 31. October 2017, 15:49: Message edited by: betjemaniac ]

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And is it true? For if it is....

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mr cheesy
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Imagine if there were, I don't know, a dozen by-elections. It doesn't really matter if they're all Tory or a mix of parties.

The uncertainty would be enormous, particularly if the mathematics worked out that if a few seats were lost by the Tories, the government would then fall.

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arse

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
If you want to bash patriarchy in general, I'm more with you than against. What we seem to have a disagreement on is how much men suffer from it. You seem to be implying a closer parity between men and women on this than I think is merited.

You don't appear to want to listen to men's experiences of how they too suffer under patriarchy. No one's forcing you, but in the meantime some other poor schmuck has thrown themselves off the local suicide spot. Pound to a penny it's a man.

(eta. It's a man.)

[ 31. October 2017, 16:00: Message edited by: Doc Tor ]

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Forward the New Republic

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betjemaniac
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:


The uncertainty would be enormous, particularly if the mathematics worked out that if a few seats were lost by the Tories, the government would then fall.

Yes, although like I say it would depend on where the by-elections were. If it was a rock solid Tory seat with a huge majority then the pressure on the blue voters to come out and defend a blue government against an energised opposition (whether red or yellow) would be enormous - so by the end no change.

Imagine however 2 safe blue seats and 2 red/blue marginals. The uncertainty is compounded by the fact it's not beyond the bounds of possibility that the cards fall the right/wrong way (depending on your point of view) and the govt could actually increase its majority!

This is why there's a lot of staring intently at shoes going on at Westminster - it's possible that no party is going to emerge unscathed from this. There is a general sense that there're a lot of rocks to be looked under (and, shamefully, a lot of the rocks are open secrets) and no one quite knows whether all the rocks will be looked under, some, none (MAD continues), and therefore who's going to be still standing after the wave.

[ 31. October 2017, 16:07: Message edited by: betjemaniac ]

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And is it true? For if it is....

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by betjemaniac:


This is why there's a lot of staring intently at shoes going on at Westminster - it's possible that no party is going to emerge unscathed from this.

True, but at the moment it is a list of Tories. The other parties are going to have to assemble a long list of miscreants to catch up - which they might.

The problem is that the Parliamentary arithmetic is tight.

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arse

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Callan
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There don't have to by by elections unless Plod gets involved. If, say, Sir Bufton-Tufton is named by the press as a serial fondler of women, the party will withdraw the Whip and, I imagine, the local party will select a new candidate at the next election. The now independent member of Parliament will doubtless continue to vote with the government. This is what happened to Eric Forth when he punched a Parliamentary colleague and a Whip who tried to separate them when he'd had a few sherbets.

I'd be cautious, before, assuming every thing on that list was by-election worthy, as well. One unmarried guy has been outed as having a relationship with his researcher. As long as the researcher is cool with that that's their business, I would have thought.

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How easy it would be to live in England, if only one did not love her. - G.K. Chesterton

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Sighthound
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Anything (with a few rare exceptions) is OK if it's consensual.

The problem is the stuff that isn't, and that goes way beyond politicians. I remember in one of my old workplaces (quite a bit ago now) there was one fairly senior manager who thought he had a right to put his hands on the female staff. One of my female colleagues indicated her displeasure by sticking a very sharp pencil into his hand, and was never bothered again.

I am tempted to say more women should do that - but that is close to victim-blaming. The point is they shouldn't have to. They shouldn't have to physically defend themselves, or feel threatened at work, or to have to pay a sort of "toll" to get on in life. These things need stamping out.

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betjemaniac
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
The other parties are going to have to assemble a long list of miscreants to catch up - which they might.


True, although my point is that the Tories are almost certainly in possession of that list....

Having had a few contacts in that world over the years, it seems to me that everyone pretty well knows everything.

The MAD aspect of it has been satirised directly in Private Eye for decades, and it forms the plot of an entire episode of the Thick of It. If the Tories start to have everyone exposed (and if, as Callan notes, enough of it is serious to start forcing by-elections rather than just all sorts of stuff that seems to be in the dragnet and comes under the heading of no one else's business), they've got nothing to lose by bringing everyone else down with them.

[ 31. October 2017, 16:31: Message edited by: betjemaniac ]

--------------------
And is it true? For if it is....

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Anglican't
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
quote:
Originally posted by betjemaniac:


This is why there's a lot of staring intently at shoes going on at Westminster - it's possible that no party is going to emerge unscathed from this.

True, but at the moment it is a list of Tories. The other parties are going to have to assemble a long list of miscreants to catch up - which they might.

The problem is that the Parliamentary arithmetic is tight.

It does seem rather unfair that some people are on this list for having had affairs or for having specific turn-ons. That's embarrassing, but nothing more. Does make me wonder who compiled this list and why.

Not quite sure where this is going to go. As you say, numbers are tight. It's all up in the air.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Doc Tor:
You don't appear to want to listen to men's experiences of how they too suffer under patriarchy.

I never said they do not. What I am saying is that the problem is not equally shared by men and women. Do you think it is?

--------------------
So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
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I'm finding the political angle on this rather interesting, but I'm going to break the flow with a small anecdote.

Since I gave up my career to look after my kids (just establishing some right-on credentials, 'cos I'm going to need them in a minute) I've taken a PT job as a lab tech with my former employer.

I was chatting to a new, young-ish female postgrad a few weeks back, who is starting to work on an existing project which (as I have mused privately) looks somewhat doomed.

My own postgrad experience was not overly sunny, and in a spirit (I thought) of wry camaraderie, I mentioned 'I was a postgrad a good while back - eventually I even ended up with a PhD'.

No response.

'You know what that stands for, right?'

No response.

[Here I must point out that amongst all my cohort, the joke was that we were working towards Permanent Head Damage. Some of us have the prescriptions (and, in the case of two pure mathematicians, the mental in-patient status) to prove it].

Then she gave me a hard stare and said

'I've heard it claimed that it stands for Pretty Huge Dick'.

So is it my fault that postgrad banter has coarsened?
[Hot and Hormonal]

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"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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mr cheesy
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I'm not sure if anyone remembers something I said here a while back, but Oxfam says it has investigated 87 claims of "exploitation and abuse" for the year ending April 2017 leading to 22 dismissals.

Ominously, that charity says it is "not unique".

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arse

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Brenda Clough
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Good. If every offender is instantly cashiered, and if the more famous ones are immediately pelted with insults, rotten tomatoes and horse manure, it's got to have a beneficial and chilling effect. Even with an unrepentant pussy-grabber in the Presidency, we can prune out a lot of the lower-level offenders. As I say, everyone is very welcome to lust in their heart. Be as dirty as you like in your fantasies. Go wild! But never tell anyone about it without asking first and securing a full and informed consent.

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Science fiction and fantasy writer with a Patreon page

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