The Nonsense of Cultural Ownership

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The media and internet are lambasted with attempts to attribute ownership of a culture to a group of people. From some Native Hawaiian’s objections to the personification of Moana, to something as outrageous as claiming that dressing in certain hairstyles is cultural misappropriation.

This issue cuts in two directions, first, the cultures which are acceptable to ‘misappropriate’ is one laden with not just a political agenda, but also some logical problems. As an example, Western European cultural motifs and belief systems are acceptable to distort and destroy but Polynesian ones are not. The rationale is to enter a dynamic of ‘dominant culture’ and ‘subjugated culture’ on which we view the entire paradigm. Which I will question the methods these are devised and bring to question its validity. Secondly, even if we accept the definition of a ‘dominant culture’ (and all its laden, self-contradictions) then we must work further to attribute ownership of culture; this is a key point many people refuse to define. But it is essential because the claim is always that there exists some authority which can determine for the planet what is or isn’t misappropriation and that generally tends to be the groups of people who supposedly ‘own’ the culture in question.

It is all of course, nonsense. As we go through these two topics I think you’ll find that those who proclaim the most compassion and sympathy for a certain group of people are merely perpetuating the very racism they claim to be defeating. I will also offer an alternative guise to view this issue going forward. (more…)

When The Right Wakes Up, The Left Winces

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2% was all it took to swing the election from the inevitable to the improbable. In one corner was a man who spit on Latinos, whose pitch to blacks was “what do you have to lose,” and whose clear misogyny was caught on tape. So against this grand slam of an opponent who do the democrats put up against him? Not a safe, middle of the road candidate like Joe Biden would have been. Nope, it was an epic race between the reviled Hilary Clinton and democratic socialist Bernie Sanders. In the end, the most unlikable democratic candidate in recent memory bubbles to the top of the cesspit like an unwanted gas bubble.

The frustration with liberals is a real phenomena, similar to the anger with Mit Romney when he lost to Obama in 2012. Here is a class of wealthy, college educated, ‘enlightened’, and ‘well informed’ individuals whose own sense of superiority was so ingratiating that they could hardly tear themselves away from the sweat aroma of their own shit to realize that they were throwing away an election. The worst candidate in modern political history runs against you, and you lose; all it took was 2%. (more…)

The Alt-Right’s Flawed, Darwinian Case Against Feminism

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The alternative right movement is a complicated phenomenon which is best characterized within the vein of Fascism and how it primarily evolved as a through refutation of Classical Liberalism and Communism. In this guise, the Alt-Right is, in my opinion, adequately thought of as neo-fascist. It is built as a refutation of the modern forms of Liberal and Communist materialism and proclaims a pathway for future human development as a ‘third way’. That is, a return to traditional hierarchical forms of social organization which were more ‘natural.’

The current legal and cultural changes regarding the status of women in society plays into this narrative directly.

The principal argument I want to address is this one, the status of females in society is a biological pre-ordained imperative and so the modern ‘regression’ of women liberalization is a destined for societal bankruptcy. The sources of Alt-Right blogs and messages boards using this argument are many, but I’ll focus on Social Matter for now. Here are some choice quotes I’d like to address (more…)

A Brief History of Feminism

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Feminism is now the rallying cry of the modern liberal. It is a term which is so inseparable from the leftist stigma that it pains the mind to think of it being separate. To be a feminist is to be for the welfare state, to support social democracy, to be against racial injustice, to be a supporter of multiculturalism, and much else. The feminist label, more so than any other in modern discourse has been subverted by the reigning political ideologies of our time. Due to its tremendous impact on our lives and its incredible success it is worthy of a full treatment here on PlatoShrugs.

Let’s begin. (more…)

Treading Water: “Fair Trade” Certifications

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The western world is in a state of crisis. Each year brings more data on declining soil fertility, loss of fresh water, dangerous swings in global temperature and much else. In light of these truths the conscientious consumer seeks to do good, to participate in saving the planet in the greatest altruistic experiment of them all; to buy green. (more…)

Thank God It’s Trump

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From MSNBC, to CNN, to every daily show you can find there is one commonality about Trump; they are all ashamed he’s a presidential candidate. Coworkers, family members, and children around the world are disgusted by his comments, annoyed by his lack of policy, and set aflame by what they hear at rallies. The translation is this, people just really wish the republican field produced a candidate more in line with their own ideology so they can comfortably disagree with their uncle Frank who, last Christmas, proudly proclaimed that he will be “god damned if that liberal scum ruins my country.”

God bless you Tim, we’re all rooting for you here at PlatoShrugs.

Life was much easier when it was center-right and center-left; a gentlemen’s disagreement could be formed over the reality that both candidates are so similar it made little difference who won. But Donald Trump entered the field like a comet pummeling toward the earth. Exploding on the political battleground in spectacular fashion, nothing was off limits. No lewd comment or remark would stick to the master of the one-liner and king of political debate framing. While Romney was burned on a liberal pyre for his 47% comments, Trump shrugs off suggestions by the media of his sexism, racism, and bigotry like a giant annoyed by gnats. So I have to ask, why? And more importantly, how is this possible? (more…)

Ethical Capitalism Is Selfish: Part 1

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Tom’s Shoes will give away a pair to the starving poor in Africa for each you purchase. The rain forest alliance sticker on your bananas claims to be environmentally friendly and conserve wildlife. Across the United States people boycott sweat shop factories in South East Asia, in the hopes that their dollar keeps exploited children from oppressive conditions.

What do all these examples of ‘ethical capitalism’ have in common? First, they underline a deep seated guilt about the way our world operates and so, some form of penance for the sin of our society must be made. Secondly, they underline a desire to satiate the deep seated tendency for control over the lives of others. And finally, like the 1960s ‘great society’ they are all hopelessly naïve about the issues they are attempting to solve. (more…)

The Politics of Suicide

Former CEO of Zurich Insurance Group Martin Senn committed suicide on Friday May 27th. This follows the heels of another high profile suicide at the multi-billion dollar corporation, their past CFO Pierre Wauthier also blew his brains out just three years prior. With suicide comes the political, and in my view, ideological response to people deciding to ‘opt out’. The reality is that governments and societies seem completely incapable of dealing with suicide, let alone understanding it. (more…)

The Price of Pride: Charity, Adoption, and Ego

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Meet Jason. He’s a good looking dog with a nice coat, a kind demeanor, a wonderful smile, oh and he’s neutered. Jason is in solid health and loves human attention, it seems like a real shame that he doesn’t have any owners. Because friends, this fine dog is up for adoption, but there is one very special thing about this dog; he’s from Phuket, Thailand.

Some reasonable people may ask the question, (more…)

The Suspension of Disbelief: Bernie Sanders as President

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In following the primary campaign of Bernie Sanders I’m surprised by the sheer number of reasonably intelligent people who actually believe that Sanders will win and be the democratic nominee. To say he will become the nominee is laughable, and to claim he has a chance was just as delusional as saying Ron Paul in the 2012 primary season was going to be the nominee. And yet people want to believe this is possible so badly (finally a candidate I believe in!!!) that they’ve weaved themselves in this fake world believing that if X, Y, and Z happen in just the right sequence “sure… yes this is possible!” A probability 0 event is possible, that does not mean it’ll ever happen. (more…)