Thursday, December 29, 2016

Is Sarkeesian's "Ordinary Women" series another money-grabbing scam?

Anita Sarkeesian made another video series, "Ordinary Women", for which she, of course, e-begged for a hefty sum of money. $200 thousand this time. When she started the fundraising campaign, the videos had actually already been shot, and the campaign was for "post-production".

The series is about famous historic women. So, where did the $200000 go? Maybe each episode is a full 1-hour documentary about a particular famous woman from history? Or, at the very least your standard 22-minute format?

No. The episodes are 3 to 5 minutes long.

Ok, then maybe there are lots and lots of episodes? Like 50 or so? That would explain why so much money is needed for "post-production".

No. There are 5 episodes.

So five episodes, each 3 to 5 minutes long. Surely the visual effects are awesome, with that money?

Once again, no. There are some graphics and extremely simplistic animations which you can do with basically any professional video editing software that costs $100 or even less. With even a modicum of searching you'll find amateur videos on YouTube with significantly more complex and involved visuals, which have been done on shoestring budgets by people on their own free time with their home PCs, using cheap or even free software.

Maybe the other production values of these episodes are very high, then? Well, no. Audio quality is poor, video quality is mediocre... There's nothing in them that you can't find in myriads of amateur videos, many of which are of much higher quality.

So, I have to ask, how much of those $200 thousand went into actually producing these five videos, and how much went into the pockets of the owners of this "non-profit" organization?

(A "non-profit" organization which, by the way, engages in political activism, which categorically disqualifies it from being classified as "non-profit", ie. tax-exempt, according to United States law.)

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Summary of new posts in my other blog

Some time ago I created a new blog about things that don't grind my gears, but are neutral or positive. This "what grinds my gear" blog gets about 20-40 views per post on average, which is ridiculously little. However, that other blog is getting about 0-2 views per post, which is even worse. So this post is a promotion of the other one.

These are short summaries of the new posts I have made there, if you are interested:

Which chess endgame is the hardest? I examine a few classical chess endgame positions and ponder which one might be the hardest to win for a human player.

Turning 3D off on a 3DS: The devil is in the details. A funny anecdote of how I had been using my 3DS for a year before figuring out how to turn 3D off completely.

Xbox One S: Too late? Written when the Xbox One S was just released, I wonder if its features should have been in the original Xbox One for them to matter.

The downside of single+multiplayer combo games. Why I think that games that have both a single player campaign as well as a multiplayer mode may not be the best of both worlds.

Difficulty levels in video games. Which one to choose? Sometimes video games with different difficulty levels entice you to choose a harder difficulty level, but that might not always be the best idea.

Why you shouldn't believe the hype, part 2. Some comments on the controversial game that was No Man's Sky.

The origins of Chuck Berry's famous guitar riff. A post similar to the one where I describe the origins of the "Lambada" song, but about that famous beginning guitar riff in many Chuck Berry's songs.

Inspired video game cover art? A funny thing I noticed about the cover art of the games Ghost Recon and Watch Dogs 2 by Ubisoft.

"Downloading" and "uploading" in movies. I discuss how these terms are used and often misused in movies, and how it's actually not always that clear-cut whether it's a misuse.

Average vs. median. Everybody knows what an average is. Many people have heard what a median is, but can't understand why it would be useful for anything. I explain what it is and why it can be useful in practice.

Reverse typecasting. "Typecasting" is when an actor is often cast in very similar roles because he or she is associated with that kind of role. But sometimes the exact reverse can be the case!

Poker clichés in old western movies. Pretty self-explanatory.

Choosing the perfect monitor... harder than one might think. I recently bought a new 4k monitor. Finding the perfect combination of features is actually surprisingly hard, at least at this point in time.

PS4 Pro 4k checkerboard interpolation explained. I explain, with illustrative pictures, how the PS4 Pro scales up old PS4 games for 4k resolution, with increased details. (This is not as straightforward as simply rendering the game at 4k because that would be too demanding, so a clever trick is used instead.)

Anti-white racism

This post is not about social justice warriors who hate white people (especially white men). While they are great enablers of anti-white racism, this is nevertheless not about them. It's about some black people who are deeply, deeply racist against white people.

And I'm completely serious about that. Just imagine the absolute worst kind of racist you can think of. The kind of racist that's not only prejudiced and discriminatory, but actually thinks of those other races as actually and literally inferior, in the physical and biological sense, even non-human. That kind of racism.

There are some black people out there who seriously and literally think that white people are not actually human, and that all white people, every single one of them, is innately racist (the sheer irony is palpable.) In other words, their brains are hard-wired to be racist. They literally think of white people as sub-human; not just as an insult, but actually biologically non-human. They think that white people have never invented anything useful, and can only destroy and exploit.

To reach these conclusions they use what the TV Tropes site calls "insane troll logic", in other words, non-sequiturs that are so insane that it's just ridiculous.

It has been estimated that humans share a percentage of DNA with neanderthals. To these black racists that means that white people are not human. Somehow.

Studies have shown that babies have a natural aversion to people who don't look like their parents, and skin color tends to be one of the major distinctive features. These black racists, of course, apply this only to white people (even though those studies show that it applies to all people) and say that every single white person is innately racist. You know, because black people can't be racist (because social justice warriors say they can't.) Some of these black racists have actually swallowed the claim that those studies only apply to white people.

If a team of 50 scientists developed some new technology, which of course also includes using previous knowledge and technology, if at any point along the line, within that team itself, or among the people who invented any of the previous technologies used here, even one single person who contributed to this pool of knowledge and research was non-white, that means that the entire thing was invented by non-whites, and white people have never invented anything. Yes, even if a thousand people in total can be seen as contributed somehow to the development of some invention, in one form of another, and even a single one of those people was non-white, no matter how small their contribution to the overall invention was, that means that that single person is the sole inventor and without him it wouldn't have happened at all, and the contribution of the 999 white people does not matter in any way.

You might think I'm exaggerating with that last one, but I'm not. That's literally what those black racists think. Whenever you see them making the argument and giving an example, they will search high and low to find even one black person who contributed to the pool of knowledge needed for that invention, and declare the entire thing as his invention, completely disregarding everybody else. Even if the black person was just the janitor of the building where the research was done, that's more than enough: Without him none of it would have happened, so the entire invention exists thanks to him, and can be attributed entirely to him.

And, of course, these black racists literally think that only white people have ever engaged in slavery and exploitation of other people. They are history deniers, and will vehemently deny that slavery has been extremely prevalent among all people, very much including Africans.

These black racists, who think of white people as less-than-human, are of course seldom above advocating a literal white genocide. Not metaphorically, or to cause controversy. They literally advocate for the mass-murder of all white people, in all seriousness. They are quite literally a black version of nazism.

And, obviously, they fully advocate full racial segregation and consider mixed-race marriages race-traitors. You know, the most cliché attitudes you can think of when you think about redneck racists.

Yes, this kind of people do exist. You can find them spreading their hideous poison on YouTube and other websites.

And making matters only worse, they have of course embraced the notion invented by social justice ideology that they aren't racist. They can't be racist because only white people can be racist. No matter what their opinions are, what they advocate, and how much they discriminate against people based solely on their race, they can't be racist.

And how many social justice warriors do you see speaking against them? None. On the contrary, there are social justice warriors who are actually supporting them, and recommending their videos to others. No, I'm not making that up.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Godwin's Law vs. Reductio ad Hitlerum

Reductio ad Hitlerum (a wordplay on "reductio ad absurdum") is a semi-humorous term coined in 1951 by Leo Strauss. It describes an attempt to invalidate someone's argument, position or opinion by making a connection to Hitler or the nazis. (In other words, that opinion or claim is undesirable or wrong because the nazis (at least allegedly) also held that opinion.) It can also be used as the end of a slippery slope argument (in other words, that the opinion or position, if allowed or accepted, would lead to something that the nazis did.)

Godwin's Law is a semi-humorous observation made in 1990 by Mike Godwin, which states that the longer a heated online discussion or flamewar continues, the more likely it is that somebody will bring up nazis into the conversation (most often in the form of accusing others of being like them.)

While both involve the concept of nazis, they are not really the same thing. The latter might involve the former, but not necessarily. (In the latter case, calling someone a nazi, or accusing them of exhibiting nazi-like mentality, is more an insult and personal attack, rather than a fallacious argument against what they are saying. In other words, the other person is accused of being like a nazi, rather than their argument being discredited or considered undesirable because of said argument having an alleged connection to nazis.) Legitimately bringing up Hitler, or the nazi party, into the conversation because it's relevant to the topic at hand is not generally considered a case of Godwin's Law. It usually only refers to unwarranted, unjustified, spurious instances, often used as an insult (or, in some cases, as a completely fallacious reductio ad Hitlerum argument.)

"Godwin's Law", however, seems to have completely superseded "reductio ad Hitlerum" as a concept, even in situations where the latter would be a more accurate description than the former. Whenever you see, for example, a YouTube video that's a critical response to someone else's video, and that someone else made a reductio ad Hitlerum argument about something, it's very likely that this response video will name "Godwin's Law", rather than "reductio ad Hitlerum". Most often this is technically incorrect, because an individual YouTube video is not an online flamewar, and the Hitler argument usually isn't brought up to insult somebody who the maker of the video is having a conversation with, but to discredit some position or claim. Exactly what reductio ad Hitlerum means.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Biased poisoning the well at Wikipedia

I have noticed that there's a pretty good method for finding out if a Wikipedia article is politically biased and drives a given sociopolitical agenda (something that a true encyclopedia should never do, given that such an encyclopedia should always maintain absolute neutrality): Look at the lede of the article and see how much it "poisons the well" with regards to the topic in question with minor minutiae that doesn't really belong there.

The "lede" is the introductory part before the table of contents, and "poisoning the well" is the dishonest technique of introducing people to a subject in a biased manner, with a clear agenda to make the reader/listener form a biased opinion based on incomplete information about the subject. (This can be done by eg. emphasizing things that support the agenda out of proportion and, conversely, de-emphasizing or even completely skipping things that would go contrary to that agenda.) "Poisoning the well" is most often used to give an unfairly negative preconception of the subject, but the technique can also be used for the opposite effect, ie. to give an unfairly positive view of the subject, based on incomplete information, exaggeration, etc.

I have already mentioned the infamous gamergate Wikipedia article, which is just disgraceful conservapedia-level propaganda. Unsurprisingly, the lede of the article is a full-on barrage against the movement, with everything they can thrown at it, making absolutely sure that somebody who only reads this summary will get the most negative view possible. (The rest of the article isn't any better. Just count how many times the word "harassment" appears in the article. It's amazing. This is truly conservapedia-level propaganda.)

But as another example, compare and contrast the articles about Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Just read the ledes of both articles with no preconceptions, and notice which one gives the negative impression and which one the positive. Heck, even the photographs in the lede have been carefully chosen to give those impressions, with one of them smiling and the other being serious.

As an example, it says this (emphasis mine):
On November 8, Trump won the presidential election by gaining a majority of the electoral college, although he received fewer popular votes nationwide than Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton
Is that bolded part really necessary in an article lede? Or does it reek of biased political agenda? Likewise in the other article:
On November 8, 2016, Clinton lost to Republican rival Donald Trump, failing to obtain the necessary 270 votes in the electoral college, despite receiving a plurality of the national popular vote.
Compare that to, for example, the article about the 23rd president of the United States, Benjamin Harrison, who likewise won the election even though he received fewer popular votes. No mention of this is made in the article lede. (It is mentioned in passing later in the article, which is reasonable.)

Another example: Milo Yiannopoulos, who has become famous as a caustic critic of the regressive left ideology. Once again we have a poisoning-the-well lede:
Yiannopoulos has been called a spokesperson for the alt-right. He considers himself a reporter of and sympathizer with the movement. He was permanently banned from Twitter in July 2016 for what the company cited as "inciting or engaging in the targeted abuse or harassment of others".
Is "Yiannopoulos has been called a spokesperson for the alt-right" and "He was permanently banned from Twitter in July 2016" really something that belongs to an article lede, or is it biased agenda-driven propaganda?

Pokémon Go... I don't get it

Pokémon Go is a free-to-play mobile game that has taken the world by storm. Millions and millions of people have been playing it actively for months. Wherever you live, every now and then you'll see somebody playing it on the street. There are videos out there of literally hundreds of people playing it at a given place (seemingly because there's some rare pokémon in the vicinity or something).

And the thing is... I don't get it. I have tried it, of course, but I just don't get it.

The entire game consists (barring the menus) of two screens: The map, and the capture screen.


And that's it. Sure, it's somewhat cool that the map is the real map of the place you are, and it updates in real time as you walk around, using GPS, but the gimmick gets old pretty fast. It's only barely more interesting than your average run-of-the-mill GPS app.

But perhaps the capture screen is more interesting? Maybe here you will have a team of up to six pokémon, and you will have to first weaken the wild pokémon before trying to capture it, or alternatively you just defeat it for exp? You know, like in the actual Pokémon games?

Nope. You just throw that ball and hope it captures the wild pokémon. That's it. There's no battle, no tactics, nothing. Just throw the ball and maybe capture the pokémon. You don't have a team. You don't battle. There's none of that.

Moreover, there is no story, no progression, nothing. You just walk around, and when a pokémon appears on the screen near you on the map, you tap it and go to that other screen and throw that ball. That's it. Essentially the whole game in a nutshell.

(Ok, there's apparently also some "gym battles", but you don't get there until you level up to a billion or something.)

It's not even that interesting in terms of collecting pokémon. Only the 150 pokémon from generation 1 are available. Ok, 150 is an ok number, but still... Considering that currently there's something like 700+ in the main games... (Yes, they have been promising to add the 2nd-gen pokémon to the game as well. As of writing this it has yet not happened.)

I got bored of the game pretty quickly. I think I reached level 5 or something, before I stopped.

I just don't get it. There's nothing interesting to this game. What exactly are people seeing that I'm not?

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

The Game Awards 2016, Dishonored 2

The Game Awards is an annual awards ceremony for video games that has been running from 2014. It's a kind of successor to the Spike Video Game Awards, which had started in 2003, and which had received an increasing amount of criticism for being little more than corporate advertisement of video games, among many other criticisms. The Game Awards was supposed to be a kind of fresh start, cutting out all the bullshit and concentrating solely on what the whole show is supposed to be about, ie. video games.

Yet, once again, commercialism and other such BS seems to have been raising its ugly head, in only three years. Critics point out how the first installment was ok, the second was already showing worrying trends, and now the third, most recent one, has pretty much succumbed to most of the same problems as its predecessor, being less about actual video game achievements and more about showmanship and ad-ridden propaganda.

I'm not going to go into all the details because I'm not versed enough, and there are plenty of articles and videos out there. Just wanted to bring one curious thing that some people noticed:

The game Dishonored 2 was published on November 11, 2016. The Game Awards 2016, where it got the award for Best Action/Adventure Game, was aired on December 1, 2016.

That's less than 3 weeks. That's an awfully, even suspiciously, short period of time, to grant a major award for a game.

Not making any accusations. Just finding it a bit curious.

Regressive left virtue signaling: The Dakota pipeline protest

The so-called "Dakota access pipeline" is a planned construction project to build an oil pipeline from North Dakota to southern Illinois. Since the spring of 2016, native Americans have organized a protest against this construction project because of its impact on the environment.

In later months, the native American leaders of this protest movement have expressed their disapproval of young white liberals (ie. rich spoiled mid-to-upper class regressive leftist) coming to the protest sites to "support" the movement, taking advantage of the temporary services built there, trashing and polluting the environment with very little regard, and then after a week or so just leaving without cleaning up after themselves, leaving all their trash and waste behind for the natives to clean up.

Which is the sheer irony of what they are doing. They are "protesting" for an environmental cause... by coming to the site, throwing their trash and their excrement around, have absolutely no regards to how they are trashing and polluting the sites, taking advantage of the services provided by the natives, and just leaving without cleaning up after themselves.

This is virtue signaling in its purest form. It makes these rich spoiled regressive leftists feel good about themselves, without actually doing anything useful and, in this case, actually only making things worse, both for the environment and the people who are actually affected by the issue. They pretend to care about the natives, yet their actions indicate the exact opposite. They don't actually care about them, or about the environment, at all; they only care about giving the picture (mostly to themselves) that they do. It's a form of patting oneself in the back for being so virtuous and holier-than-thou.

It is also highly ironic that these are the exact same regressive leftists who say that white people have no place in inserting themselves into the spaces of oppressed minorities. Of course, as the sheer hypocrites they are, they don't have any qualms about breaking their own rules and principles. Because, you know, when you have the moral high ground, everything is permissible and you can do no wrong, and you are free to not follow your own rules which you are imposing onto others. And that's not hypocrisy because, once again, you have the moral high ground and you can do no wrong.

Why is VR so obsessed with move controllers?

The "Oculus Touch" (which means the Oculus Rift with the new controllers) is going to launch very soon. And with "over 50 launch titles" to offer! Woohoo!

As a side note, I have been wondering from the very beginning of the whole "room-scale VR" crap why nobody is making the one game that would be pretty much perfect for that technology: Golf.

Oh, sure, there's a "golf" game among those "50 launch titles"... except it's not traditional golf, but some weird mini-golf sort-of. And, surprise surprise, it looks like absolute crap:


I mean, seriously. These are barely PlayStation 2 level graphics. I know I have complained about this before, but it never ceases to amaze me. And I'm not even kidding. Just as an example, here's a screenshot of a PlayStation 2 game:


Even the PlayStation 2 manages to look better than most of this VR crap.

But I digress. Back to the main topic, which is the idiocy that's all these move controllers.

In case you don't know what I'm talking about, here are the versions for the upcoming Oculus Rift:


Yay! Yeah, sure, it will make for cool technology demos, but seriously, exactly how many hours on end do you envision yourself playing with your arms extended like that, waving them around?

Not to be left behind, the Vive is also upgrading their own versions:


Double yay! Technology! But not very ergonomic. And of course PSVR has its own "move controllers". Because they are so crucial.

Compare and contrast to how games are normally played:


Notice the drastic difference?

There's a reason why gamepads have been developed over the decades to be as ergonomic as possible, and playable while resting your arms. A good reason.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

The social constructionism hypothesis is wrong

One of the (many) core tenets of modern feminist social justice ideology is the social constructionism hypothesis. This is the claim that all behavioral and social differences between genders, in personalities, in attitudes, in preferences, in societal roles etc. are a pure construction the environment, of the society that we live in. In other words, for example, some professions are very male-dominated because we have been raised to think of them as being manly jobs, and vice-versa. Likewise men are more stoic and aggressive because of upbringing, and so on and so forth.

The opposite of this hypothesis is the view that, while upbringing obviously does have some effect on behavior, personality and preferences, much of it is nevertheless biological, rather than cultural. Men prefer certain jobs, and certain activities, and have certain types of personalities, on average, because they are naturally inclined to it, rather than having been "taught" to be like that.

Studies have been made to try to corroborate either view. And the results are not surprising (except to the feminists, who of course absolutely refuse to accept them, of course.) The fact is that the freer, more egalitarian, and more equal a country is, the more pronounced the differences in career preferences appear to be.

When, for example, Norway (one of the most egalitarian countries in existence) was compared to a country like India, it turned out that in the former gender differences in stereotypically "male" and "female" jobs were more pronounced than in the latter. For example, there are actually proportionally more female nurses in Norway than there are in India. And the same is true pretty much all across the board, with many other countries being compared (such as Sweden), with both stereotypically male and stereotypically female jobs.

There's a rather simple explanation given by sociologists and psychologists (who are not social justice ideologues) to this: In an utterly free and rich society, where there is no pressure on anybody to follow a given career (eg. because of poverty or other such reasons), people on average tend to choose the career they are innately most inclined to. Women, on average, tend to seek careers that are empathetic, such as nurses and kindergarten teachers, while men tend to seek careers that are more technical. When in such an utterly free society there is no particular pressure on choosing one or the other, they tend to follow their own innate inclinations.

In contrast, in poorer countries people take by necessity the jobs that are available, rather than the job they would like. If there is, for example, a demand for nurses, that's what people will do, regardless of gender or societal norms.

But of course feminists do not accept this, and will never accept this. They will bend over backwards in order to try to find a cultural explanation for it. Even if it means going to conspiracy theory territory.

VR headset manufacturers should learn from Sony

The HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift, the Razer OSVR, and the Pimax 4K:


The PSVR:


Notice one key difference between those other VR headsets and the PSVR?

All those other headsets are like ski goggles, pressing against your face. In fact, they all have those elastic straps that quite literally and explicitly press the visor against your face. And this is not just theoretical. Many reviews point out how using the headsets for long periods of time will leave press marks on your face (like a "wolverine mask"), and may become uncomfortable after long periods of time. Another common complaint is that it can press against your nose, causing pain in the long run.

Contrast that with the PSVR. Rather than being like a ski goggle, it's like a headband, like a helmet, that you wear on your head, and the visor hangs freely from the headband, rather than pressing against your face with force. The frontal part of the headset's weight presses against your forehead, on a rather large surface, rather than a narrow rim around your eyes.

While I have not yet got the opportunity to try these headsets, I have the strong feeling that the PSVR would be the most comfortable in the long run because of this design.

For some reason it seems that only Sony figured out this ingenious design. None of the other manufacturers did, nor have. And they aren't even trying to copy Sony's idea. (And, in fact, the four examples I listed are not the only ones. There are tons of cheap knockoffs, and a couple of a bit more serious attempts... all of them using the ski goggle design that presses against your face with elastic straps.)

Saturday, December 3, 2016

The leftist media vs. BLM vs. gamergate

I think that both the "Black Lives Matter" and the "Gamergate" movements are excellent examples of how utterly biased the current left-leaning regressive media is, at large.

At least 99% of the media presented the absolutely unilateral biased narrative that Gamergate is this fuzzy indeterminate hate movement by male gamers against women in videogaming. By large they either ignored or ridiculed the claim by actual people in the movement that it's actually a customer revolt against corruption in video game journalism. (Criticism against the "progressive" feminist social justice ideology that seems to have largely invaded said journalism may also have been a significant motivation for the movement, but in this case it's not motivated by misogyny in any way, shape or form either. It's a protest against censorship of video games, and against the tirade of condescension and insults that the video game journals had thrown at the average gamer, their readership.)

The media kept constantly bringing up all the "harassment" and "threats" that gamergaters allegedly had bombarded many prominent women with. Actual proof that these attacks were in fact made by actual gamergate activists was scarce, even non-existent. Assertions that Gamergate does not approve of such actions were largely ignored or dismissed. Even assuming that some of those online attacks were perpetrated by some people who identified themselves as "gamergaters", the media condemned the entire movement by the actions of that small minority of individuals.

Which brings us to the polar opposite of gamergate, in the sense of how the leftist media treats the movement: Black Lives Matter.

BLM protesters have engaged in looting, arson, destruction of private property, physical violence, credible threats, and derisive insults towards, among other people, the police force in general. And these are not just alleged actions. There are tons and tons of video footage of this, completely unambiguous and with no room for misinterpretation. These are people carrying "Black Lives Matter" signs, chanting the most heinous things, and looting, burning and destroying private property.

So, does the leftist media treat BLM like they did (and still do) Gamergate? Do they condemn the entire thing as a dangerous violent hate movement because of the actions of some individuals?

Of course not. They treat the exact opposite of what they do with Gamergate. They, of course, defend BLM to the end. They make up all the excuses in the world to defend them.

If the leftist media were consistent and had even a shred of integrity, rather than hypocrisy, they would offer similar treatment to all major citizen revolts: Either condemn them all for the actions of the few, or defend them all regardless of the actions of the few. When you do one with one movement, and the other with another movement, that's clear political bias.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Why is the social justice ideology so virulent?

For many years I have been watching horrified how far the modern feminist social justice ideology is going, and what kind of negative effects it has on the world as large (such as censorship, limiting basic human freedoms, intimidation, harassment, persecution, sometimes even from officials), but I have been able to largely do this as a distant observer from here Finland. Surely my country is a modern progressive (the right kind of progressive, not the regressive social justice kind) society that just laughs off that madness that's happening at distant lands far away?

Nope. The ideology is so incredibly virulent that it's already metastasizing Finnish education at all levels.

First the ministry of education announced that they will be teaching social justice to grade schoolers, almost directly copied from the same program in Australia. The whole shebang. Whites are privileged, there are like a million different genders, terminology like "cis"... The entire thing.

And now the major university in Finland has officially announced that it's a feminist organization.

The latter has caused controversy because all university students are officially members of said organization, as this is a requirement for them to attend and get a degree. If some students would not want to be part of a "feminist" organization, but are forced to, if they want to graduate, this may be a breach of the Finnish constitution (which quite specifically says that people cannot be forced to join any groups they don't want to, especially to get some kind of public service, which university education arguably is, especially given that it's heavily, even exclusively, funded by the government, making it in essence a governmental entity.)

But why? Why is modern feminist social justice ideology so incredibly virulent? Why do organization after organization, country after country, embrace it, ignoring all the major problems it has, including the trampling of basic human rights and libertarian values?

I guess that it will only be a matter of time before we will see the same kind of censorship, harassment and human rights violations in Finnish universities as we are seeing elsewhere.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Fidel Castro dies, the regressive left praises him as a hero

Fidel Castro was a brutal totalitarian dictator of Cuba who oppressed the citizens of Cuba for almost 60 years. For all that time, consistently, Cuba ranked as one of the countries with most human rights violations. Firing squads, imprisonment of political dissenters and journalists, you name it. Castro's regime impoverished the country, while Castro himself was a multi-millionaire. He ruled the country with an iron fist.

When news of Castro's death surfaced, Cubans who had escaped political persecution to the United States, and pretty much lived in exile there, marched the streets in celebration. They expressed their sincere relief that one of the darkest moments in their country's history was finally, at some level, over, and that perhaps now their country will begin the long and arduous march to human rights and liberty.

Surely world leaders would have sympathized with these political exiles? Certainly a word of hope, a wish for a new brighter era for Cuba was widely expressed?

Of course not. You see, Castro was a communist. And you know how the regressive left, which has pretty much invaded the leadership of most western countries, think about communism.

State leader after state leader published an eulogy praising Castro as a great leader. For example Justin Trudeau's eulogy is so cringeworthy that it's just disgusting. (In fact, it has become a meme to parody his eulogy of Castro by writing similar eulogies of other oppressive mass-murdering totalitarian dictators from history.)

Donald Trump, of all people, seems to be the only head of state who had the balls to criticize Castro, and was he on fire. He described Castro as a "brutal dictator" and described all the injustices and human rights violations he had committed over his long career. He was also the only leader to express the wish that perhaps now libertarian values and freedoms will start in Cuba.

So regressive leftist leaders praise Castro as a great leader, a hero of the people. Donald Trump calls him for what he really was. And then the leftists wonder why Trump is so popular.

A rather easy way to confront the "wage gap" myth

The "big lie" term was coined by Adolf Hitler in is book Mein Kampf, and refers to the propaganda technique of (an authority figure) telling such a huge lie that the audience just accepts it because they cannot fathom such an authority figure telling such a blatant lie, and thus assume that it must be true.

A more popular form of this, put forward by Joseph Goebbels, is that if a lie is repeated enough, it becomes true (in the sense that people at large will simply start accepting it as true without question; it becomes true in their minds, even against evidence of the contrary.)

This is actually understandable from a psychological perspective. We are pretty much hard-wired to believe in things that everybody else believes. If everybody around us believes something, without question and without criticism, without alternative views, we tend to take it for granted as well. This especially if we have been raised in such an environment all our lives. It requires an unusual kind of skeptical mind to doubt that belief. Unfortunately only a small minority of people have this talent, and they are usually ignored (and sometimes even shunned) by the majority.

When that belief is actually accurate and conforming to reality, there's no harm in it. However, the harm may come when the belief is actually not accurate and differs from reality. People may start acting according to the belief, misled by false information.

The infamous "wage gap" is such a big lie. It has been repeated over and over and over during the past decade or two (and in increasing amounts during the last few years), so much that many people just take it for granted, without question, without skepticism. Anybody doubting this self-evident "truth" is ridiculed and shunned, called names and insulted. You see this "fact" being repeated in a very matter-of-fact manner by people, including celebrities and authority figures.

There is, however, a relatively easy way of countering the claim: Just ask for an actual, concrete example. Ask for an example of an actual specific company that pays less hourly salary to women than to men for the exact same job. After all, if the claim is true, there must be thousands and thousands of companies out there doing this. Coming up with one single example shouldn't be that difficult.

Every time this subject has come up, online or offline, I have asked for such an example. So far I have been given zero of them. People just repeat the claim as a self-evident fact, but never have a single actual example of it to give. They just believe it with no factual evidence to support it.

Be aware, though, that as always with these kinds of things, some smart-ass might actually give you a concrete example. It will probably be fabricated (but there's obviously no way to prove that on the spot), or it might even be true, who knows. But there's a perfect answer to it: "Have you reported it to the authorities? Paying women less than men for the exact same job is illegal."

Note that not all types of job are the same. Not every job is that of a factory worker, where the person checks in at 8am, does exactly 8 hours of work, doing some mundane repetitive task at an assembly line, and then goes home. Not every one of them is a desk job. Or cleaning toilets.

Some jobs are creative, and are based on talent and skill. Some people may be more talented and skillful than others, and might be much more proficient and outright better at doing the "exact same" job. There may be "supply and demand" in play here; not of physical goods, but of talent, skills and knowledge.

Sometimes it might not even be a question of talent and skill, but just of fame, when we are talking about a public figure, like an actor, or a speaker. For example, two actors may technically speaking be equally talented and qualified for a role, but one of them is a world-famous celebrity actor who will draw in the masses to movie theaters, while the other is a completely unknown nobody just fresh out of drama school. The world-famous actor (or rather, his agents) will ask for more money than the unknown nobody, and will refuse to take the part otherwise. It's then up to the produces and executives to decide which one they will hire. (In this case, it's actually the "worker" who is demanding a higher salary, and refusing to do the job otherwise, rather than the "employer" just paying less for the "exact same work". It's up to the employer to decide which one they want.)

Fashion modeling is another perfect example of this. And, curiously, an example where the "wage gap" benefits women more than men. Top female models are largely paid vastly larger sums than top male models, technically speaking for the "exact same work". Again, it's a question of supply and demand, and a question of the "workers" demanding a certain salary or refusing to do the work otherwise. The more famous and popular models will get higher sums than the unknowns. The models that draw in customers and viewership will get higher sums than the ones that don't.

Or take another example: Anita Sarkeesian (at least some time ago) had a speaker fee of something like 20 thousand dollars. If I, a completely unknown nobody, were to offer myself to speak at the exact same event, do you honestly think that the organizer would be willing to pay me 20 thousand dollars, even assuming they would even accept me as a speaker? They might be willing to pay me a hundredth of that sum, if even that. Is this a "wage gap"? Or is it a question of supply and demand? A question of which speaker will draw in more listeners (and thus more profits for the organizers.)

Monday, November 21, 2016

What is equality of opportunity?


There was an article written by a social justice warrior (which link I have lost and can't be bothered to google) talking about why the libertarian principle of equality of opportunity is a really bad thing. Even unconstitutional. It proceeded to describe "equality of opportunity" pretty much as "equality of outcome", which is one of the major criticism that egalitarians have about the modern social justice ideology. One example it gave of enforcing "equality of opportunity" was that if a person is born in a rich family, then his money would need to be taken away and distributed equally among the poorer people, to give everybody the same opportunities and not have somebody have an unfair advantage.

This is so wrong at so many levels. For one, that's quite directly what equality of outcome is, not equality of opportunity.

But at the most fundamental level it's a complete misunderstanding of what the principle of "equality of opportunity" means. I don't know if this is a deliberate or a genuine misunderstanding (I wouldn't be surprised if it were the former), but it's completely off the mark. That's not what the concept means at all.

Equality of opportunity is a quasi-legal concept. It means that nobody is socially discriminated based on personal characteristics such as gender, ethnicity, country of origin, sexual orientation, social status, and other such characteristics. More precisely, nobody is discriminated in things like education, hiring, basic freedoms, public services, and so on and so forth, based on those characteristics.

For example, rich and poor, white or black, man or woman, both have the same opportunity to apply to the same job. The employer ought to give a fair chance to everybody regardless of their external inconsequential characteristics, without discrimination, and hire people based on qualifications and merit, rather than based on things like race or sexual orientation.

Educational institutions (such as universities) should offer the exact same opportunity for enrollment to all qualified people regardless of gender, race, social status and so on. Enrollment should be a question of qualifications, not a question of personal characteristics such as race. While in some cases the question of money may become relevant (as most universities in the world are not free), the discrimination should nevertheless not be based on personal characteristics (such as gender, etc.)

Obviously outcome will not be the same for all people. Not everybody is as qualified as everybody else, not everybody is able or willing to do the same things, not everybody has the same knowledge, experience or skills. The important thing, however, is that they are given the opportunity to pursue whatever path they choose, if they so choose, without being stopped or hindered by personal characteristics, because of discrimination or favoritism.

What this means is that, among other things, hiring quotas are blatantly against this principle of equality of opportunity. Hiring quotas are discrimination based on these personal characteristics, as it's favoritism towards some people with such characteristics, and discrimination against others. Not everybody is given the same opportunity to be hired, based on merit and qualifications. Instead, some people are given preferential treatment based on gender, race, etc. which directly implies that people without those characteristics will be discriminated against.

This is the reason why I, personally, strongly oppose hiring quotas (and other such quotas, eg. in university enrollment). It's discrimination based on gender, race or other such characteristics, which is blatantly against the most fundamental human rights, constitutionalism, and libertarian values.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Half-Life 2 speedrunning is dead

Some time ago a YouTube user nicknamed Apollo Legend made a video about "the death of speedrunning". In this video he's not saying that speedrunning is becoming less and less popular, but that the organization has, in his view, become stagnant, and that there is little progress in terms of organizing speedruns (eg. speedrun races), poor leadership, and so on.

On a rather different tangent, and quite unrelated to that particular topic, I wrote a comment to that video that in my view speedrunning of some particular games seems to be completely dead. And I mentioned Half-Life 2 speedrunning as the quintessential example. What do I mean by this? Well, here's an essay on that subject:

Firstly, we have to define what we mean by "speedrunning". In essence, it's playing a game from beginning to end as fast as possible. To reach the ending of the game in as a minimal time as possible.

Of course it's not that simple. Some ground rules need to be set, by necessity, to better define what we consider a valid completion of the game.

To understand why, let's consider this (deliberately) extreme example: Suppose that after starting the game I alt-tabbed to Windows, launched a hex-editor, proceeded to make some changes to the save file of the game with it, and then went back to the game and loaded the save... which throws me right to the ending of the game. I think you would agree that this is not a legit completion of the game. I didn't actually play the game from beginning to end. Instead, I used an external tool to alter the game's state and jump to the end without actually playing it. I don't think many people would accept this as a valid legit speedrun.

Thus, a line must be drawn. Some techniques must be considered illegit, while others are allowed. And the question is: Where do we draw this line?

One could hastily come up with a rule of thumb like "if it can be done from within the game, without going to the system or any other program, then it's ok." While at first that might sound like a good rule, it's actually not enough. Half-Life 2 itself provides an excellent example: The developer console. Said console can be opened completely from within the game, using only what the game itself provides, and commands can be written to it, such as a command to jump to a particular level (such as the last level of the game). I think you'd agree that this wouldn't be a legit completion of the game either; and the speedrunning community at large also agrees with this. The developer console in Half-Life 2 is banned from speedruns.

Thus not everything can be allowed even if it can be used completely from within the game itself. In other words, the limits must be tighter. So where exactly draw the line?

And here's where my opinion differs from that of the speedrunning community at large.

Let's take another example to illustrate: Would you consider it legit to pause the game, go to the save/load menu, delete a quicksave from there, and then try to load it, causing the game to glitch in some manner and allowing bypassing some obstacle faster?

This wasn't a theoretical example, but an actual technique used in actual Half-Life 2 speedruns.

The speedrunning community at large says yes, it is allowed. I question this. What exactly is the difference between the developer console, and the menu that allows you to delete a save file?

In both cases we are talking about meta-features that the game program offers that are not directly related to playing the game itself, ie. not gameplay proper. Their basic difference is that one is accessible through a developer console popup that accepts written input, the other is a menu usable with the mouse. But those are essentially just a difference in user interface, not in role and functionality. You cannot argue anything (in terms of acceptability in a speedrun) from the difference in user interface alone. Both deal with non-gameplay metafeatures, rather than playing the game proper. Why is one allowed and the other banned?

In fact, when I have discussed this with people online, only one answer tends to pop up at the end: It just has been agreed by the speedrunning community.

I take this as an admission that the distinction between the two is arbitrary, and there isn't actually a good reason why one is allowed and the other isn't.

And do you know what makes it even worse? If you look at any modern Half-Life 2 speedrun, as being run by some speedrunner on a live stream eg. on twitch, you'll see that they spend several minutes of the run just saving and loading (at some points spending a minute or two doing nothing else), and the clock will actually pause when they are doing so. In other words, all that time spent saving and loading (which takes a couple of seconds each time) is not counted towards the time of the run. Essentially they can spend as much time saving and loading as they want, and it won't make the official time of the run any longer. They could spend an hour doing nothing else, and that hour wouldn't be counted. And this is supposed to be the "fastest" completion of the game...

Personally I do not consider abusing any of these meta-features to affect the actual game (eg. to glitch it) to be legit speedrunning. It's not playing the game. As in controlling the playable character, acting upon the game state using the input that the game provides for that purpose. These are meta-features unrelated to actual gameplay, for other purposes. For example, in the case of saving and loading, to be able to suspend playing and resume later where you left off. Saving and loading are not gameplay proper; they are ancillary meta-features.

Remember how we defined "speedrunning" in the first place: To play the game from beginning to end as fast as possible. Emphasis on "play". Saving, loading, deleting savefiles, changing graphical settings, writing commands on the developer console... none of these constitute gameplay. They do not constitute playing the game proper.

Speedrunning used to be more "pure" in this sense (and, in the case of many games, it thankfully still is, although in most cases that's because the game simply doesn't have the sort of bugs that would allow abuse of meta-features to glitch it.) With some games, however, this "purity" of gameplay has been lost. Abuse of non-gameplay meta-features is becoming more and more prevalent and ubiquitous.

Half-Life 2 is the quintessential example because that's the only category of speedrunning that exists there anymore. With some games, which allow similar abuse, some speedrunners may still opt for creating new categories where such glitches are not abused. But unfortunately Half-Life 2 is not such a game.

The last legit Half-Life 2 speedrun was created many years ago. Then they discovered all the save-loading glitches, and deleting-the-savefile glitches and so on, and that's all they have done ever since. That's all you get today. There are no options.

From my perspective, Half-Life 2 speedrunning is dead. It died years ago, after the last "pure" speedrun that didn't abuse non-gameplay meta-features to glitch the game. No legit speedrun has been created since.

Sweden, the mentally retarded family member of the world

If there's one country that has embraced modern feminism, to the most absolutely ridiculous extents, it's Sweden. Other countries like Canada and Australia are working really hard to get there, but Sweden is by far in the lead on this front. That is, the lead on absolutely ridiculous mentally retarded feminist ideas.

Take, for example, the brilliant idea that the way that snow has been ploughed in Stockholm is sexist, and needs to be "gender equal". Why is it sexist? Because ploughing has been prioritized to first plough the busiest and most important roadways. I especially love this part of the article:
Inspired by authorities in the municipality of Karlskoga, Helldén explained that snowploughs in Stockholm typically target areas frequented by men, such as the roads
Such as the roads...

Anyway. They now implemented a more "gender equal" priority to snowploughing, which of course in feminist parlance means that places frequented by women (such as daycare centers) are ploughed first (because, you know, that's what "equality" means in feminist vocabulary).

What happened? Traffic chaos.

You know. The thing that happens when the busy roads of a metropolis are not ploughed in time, and are full of snow. And this surprised how many people? Something like zero, I guess. (At least sane people.)

But of course, as the article says, the new "gender equal" (which means "women first") snow clearing is not to be blamed. Because of course it shouldn't be. It's the morally right thing to do, and the busybodies having the moral high ground enacted it, and thus it's impossible that must be the cause. When you have the moral high ground, you can never be wrong. The cause must be something else.

I bet they'll end up declaring that the cause is the patriarchy. Somehow.

Misconceptions that non-creationists have about evolution

Creationists have all kinds of misconceptions (and distortions, and straw-men, and even outright lies) about the theory of evolution. But this post is not about them. It's about common misconceptions that non-creationists, even those who fully accept the theory, often have about evolution.

The "evolutionary ladder"


This is a very old myth about biology that goes back hundreds of years, well before Darwin. In fact, Darwin's books about evolution argued against this (instead proposing an evolutionary tree, where all species are on an equal level at the ends of the branches.)

The idea is that there are rather discrete "steps" to evolution, and different species are at different levels on this "evolutionary ladder". At the top are, of course, humans. Below them are apes and monkeys, and so on and so forth, neatly classified in terms of complexity and evolutionary progress.

This leads to the thought of "taking the next step" in evolution. We are at a given level in the ladder, and when we "evolve enough" we'll transfer to the next step above it.

While sometimes the expression "the next step in evolution" is used more figuratively, way too often it's used too literally, as if there indeed were discrete steps or jumps that can be distinctly measured or described. That's just not how evolution works in reality. It's a very gradual and much fuzzier process.

The "direction" of evolution


Even more prevalent is the notion that evolution has a direction. Everything is evolving towards being more complex, more "evolved", better in every way. Oftentimes this misconception goes so far as people thinking that given enough time, we'll evolve into energy beings or something. Underlying this thinking is the idea that evolution has a goal and a direction.

That's not how evolution works at all. Evolution has no direction, no goal. It's a completely mindless natural process that just happens due to physical interactions between entities and their components in the physical world. It has no intent, no purpose, no goals, no direction. It just happens. It's like a river that changes shape over time due to erosion and natural phenomena: It has no goal or intent in mind; it just happens due to how the physical elements interact with each other.

Evolution is just the variation that happens from one generation to the next (which is why it's often described as "descent with variation"). Some of those changes may help the species survive better than other changes. The part of the population that has lesser chances of survival due to a particular change may die off more easily, and thus the changes that increase the chances of survival get naturally selected into the species (and natural selection is, once again, just a mindless natural process that simply happens; it's essentially emergent behavior.)

Sometimes the changes may be considered (by a very subjective measure) to have made the species "more complex" or "better", but that's not necessarily always the case. Sometimes a change that makes the species "less complex", simpler, might help it survive a particular environment they find themselves in. Maybe they lose something they had, or something becomes more "primitive", and it just happens in that particular environment to help them survive better. (That's why some species have eg. lost limbs over long periods of time, for instance.)

Descent with modification, with natural selection, simply makes a species adapt to its changing environment. No intent, purpose or goal; it just happens due to blind physical interactions. If a sizeable group of that species moves to another location, or the environment changes for other reasons, it often causes for a different set of changes to be naturally selected (because the part of the species that happens to get such changes has a better survival rate, the rest dying off, essentially becoming "extinct" over a long period of time within the species itself.) If the species does not adapt, eg. because those necessary changes just don't happen, then it may die off completely (which happens quite a lot).

This is closely related to the next point:

"De-evolution"


This is the notion (especially loved by Hollywood) that a species, or even an individual, can "de-evolve" into a more primitive form, into a past ancestral form.

This is nonsense. There is no "de-evolution". There is only evolution. Evolution is that: Just change in a species over time. It doesn't matter what kind of change, or what "direction" that change may take the species (as there is no "direction" to evolution).

As noted earlier, sometimes the changes might make the species resemble a distant ancestor species. It may even be that some genes that had been deactivated some time along the line become once again activated, and thus something that was changed in the past becomes "unchanged". But this is not "de-evolution"; just evolution. Genes combine, they change, sometimes they mutate, it's all just change.

A closely related concept is that genes somehow have a "memory" of what they were in the past, and this can cause the species (or even an individual) to be able to revert to a previous form. Again, mostly nonsense. If something has changed, it retains no "memory" of anything.

Let's use an analogy using words (which is quite a popular analogy with these subjects). Assume I have the word "CAR". Now we make a random change to it and it becomes "CAT". Does this new word somehow "remember" that it was "CAR" in the past? No. If another random change is done to it, and it just happens to be the right kind of change, it might actually become once again "CAR". But that was just random chance, not because it somehow "remembered" that it was like that in the past.

(Caveat: Genetics is a hugely complex subject, and I'm a complete layman, so I may well be talking out of my ass here. As said, the subject may be made more complicated by the fact that sometimes genes can "turn off", while still being inherited to the next generations, and then perhaps "turned on" again by another random change. In this case the genes kind of "remember" their past because that particular one was never changed, just "turned off". In Hollywood science, however, the notion seems to be more esoteric than this.)

Individuals evolving


This is another favorite of Hollywood, but the fact is that individuals do not evolve! If you understand the theory of evolution at all, you would understand why.

The theory of evolution is a model that describes how a group of living beings (consisting of numerous individuals) that forms a species changes over time, from generation to generation, and how and why some of those changes remain while others disappear. These changes apply pretty much to the entire species (a certain small change may happen to a newborn individual, but over the next generations, if it's a successful change, it will "spread" to the entire species, as all the descendants of this individual pair with other individuals in the species, producing offspring that inherit that particular change.)

Individuals are different from their parents, and this is part of evolution (a very minuscule part, but still part of it). Individuals do not "evolve" during their lifetimes. They especially never experience radical changes like in some Hollywood movies; that's just a physical impossibility. Also, you can't make an individual "evolve", not even in theory, not be any conceivable means, because that's just not how evolution works.

The "intent" of evolution


Sometimes you see misinformed people talk about how this or that was never "intended" by evolution (or nature, or whatever), or that evolution (nature, whatever) "intended" us to do this or that. As a concrete example, I once had a discussion with a person online who thought that evolution never "intended" us to eat meat.

This is absolute nonsense. As mentioned several times, evolution is just a mindless natural process that happens automatically due to the physical interaction between elements and forces. It just happens. It has no mind, goal or intent. Evolution doesn't "intend" us to do or not do anything. It has no purpose, meaning, intent or goal. Saying otherwise is exactly as silly as saying that gravity "intends" us to do something, or electricity, or volcanoes, or the rain. They are just natural phenomena that simply happen; they have no intent, purpose or goal behind them. You wouldn't go around saying "gravity never intended us to fly in airplanes"; that would be just silly. Then why would you go around saying "evolution never intended us to do this"? It's exactly as silly.

It's impossible to "against" nature, or evolution. In this sense there is no such a thing as something "unnatural". Everything is natural, because it happens in the existing universe. Likewise the notion of doing something according to nature or evolution is likewise nonsensical.

Of course some people (including creationists) could interpret that as everything being "permissible". No. That's not what it means at all. We, as a social species, survive when we work together and protect each other. We don't survive if we start harming each other. Harming each other would be simply stupid. (Unfortunately too many people do it anyway. Fortunately we have formed deterrents to avoid it becoming too common.)

Survival of the fittest


This is a notion shared by many creationists, but it is also a notion sometimes believed by non-creationists, sometimes by deranged (or just misinformed) individuals. And it's the notion that the expression "survival of the fittest" means the same as "survival of the strongest", which in turn means that the weakest members of the species should be disposed of.

"Fitness" in this expression is not talking about strength per se. It's talking about being adapted for survival in a particular environment.

With many species, especially social species, including humans, taking care of the weakest members of society is actually what has helped us thrive and survive as a species. Our "fitness" as a species is that we survive and thrive as a large group that takes care of its members. We are not physically very strong compared to other animals (especially predators), but we have something that most of them lack: Intelligence and skill. We are a highly social species that can organize, live in a "hive" of sorts, and have strength in numbers and in organization, with different individuals having different roles.

The misaimed notion that some deranged individuals have that evolution means that the strongest should live and the weakest die, would actually be detrimental for the survival of the human species. It's not how we survived and became so successful.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Toxic femininity

The modern feminist social justice ideology is, at its core, deeply misandrist. In other words, it just hates men. Almost every complaint and claim they make is about something related to men and how they are somehow a problem. At the same time, they will never, ever, acknowledge any fault that's prevalent in women and rare in men.

"Toxic masculinity" is but one of the several such topics they have come up with. It's mostly misaimed, based on exaggerations, fabrications, and barking up the wrong tree.

Well, I could just as well use the same tactics to come up with the concept of "toxic femininity" to attack women as a whole. Like this.

(Note: I obviously don't think like this. I'm making this up as a demonstration of how you can come up with such rhetoric, using facts mixed up with exaggerations, fabrications and fallacious conclusions.)
Toxic femininity is the phenomenon that women, at large, are raised in our society to be overly emotional, dependent and vindictive. Girls in school, especially high school, are most often teased, bullied and harassed by other girls (fact), which only strengthens this detrimental cultural vicious cycle. No wonder that women, when they grow up, are enormously more likely to commit infanticide (fact), and overall engage in emotional and even physical abuse of children (fact). They are also at least as likely to be the aggressor in domestic violence as men (fact). Women are also raised to be dependent on their husband, and thus seek higher-paying jobs much less often than men. Thus many women abuse this situation, often by demanding being housewives, who don't need to go to work, while their husbands will. Women often also enjoy the privilege of getting smaller (or even no) sentences for the same crimes as men (fact), and most often win custody battles (fact).
Toxic femininity can also be seen in their day-to-day behavior, especially among themselves. They are prone to gossip and to slander people behind their backs. A cultural behavior that's only reinforced by the media, TV and movies. They are also often very emotional, taking even the slightest offenses or remarks very seriously, and are very vindictive about it. These are often things that men would just shove off as trash talk or humor. Because of these cultural norms, women are very prone to become depressed, anxious, and even hysterical. Where men typically remain calm, collected and reasonable, women will often react emotionally and aggressively.
See, when you start making stuff up, it can go both ways. Basically nothing of what I wrote above is exactly false (and I have marked everything that's a hard fact), but the message that the text is conveying is quite unfair and fallacious, full of exaggeration and bias.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

When you have the moral high ground, everything is permissible (including murder)

Donald Trump's election as the next president of the United States, and the reaction by the regressive left to it, has really shown how completely devious and abhorrent the regressive leftist ideology is.

A reporter of the CNN network said in a televised interview that at some point at the beginning of the presidential campaign, CNN showed full unedited speeches by Trump. And that this was a "mistake".

It's quite public knowledge, and has been for quite a long time, that biased journalists will often engage in censorship and even dishonest editing in order to drive a certain agenda (eg. a political one.) Of course journalists seldom want to admit to using such underhanded dishonest tactics. Except, apparently, when the subject is an undesirable person. Then it seems to be completely ok to censor and edit. Then it seems that the honest showing of full unedited footage is a "mistake". And they don't seem to have any qualms about openly stating so.

More blatantly, many anti-Trump protesters are openly rooting for his assassination. They are openly saying on live TV that they hope that he gets murdered.

Of course this is, somehow, completely different from totalitarian regimes assassinating political dissenters and undesirable people. Because, you know, these protesters have the moral high ground, and when you have the moral high ground, everything becomes permissible, including murder. And because it's the current year.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Why did Trump win?

After Trump's victory in the American presidential elections, blogs and YouTube were filled with crying social justice warriors. Some of these videos are just hilarious. Others are really scary (such as the one by the infamous Anita Sarkeesian, where she talks exactly like a dangerous cult leader. It's astonishingly dark and scary.)

One of the most infamous YouTube feminists, Laci Green, also made such a video. She says in that video: "We let this happen."

No. You didn't "let this happen." You made this happen. It didn't happen regardless of your efforts. It happened precisely because of your efforts. (And by "you" I'm referring to the entire regressive leftist cult.)

The Democratic Party (ie. the "liberals", ie. the "left") in the United States has been largely appropriated by the modern feminist social justice ideology. Not all supporters of said party are social justice warriors, but quite a significant portion of its politicians, its head figures, are at the very least sympathetic to the ideology, and parrot much of its rhetoric.

One of the major problems with the so-called "regressive left" is that it tries to inculcate its policies into people via shaming. It shames people, it accuses people, it insults people. According to them, the vast majority of the citizens are racists, sexists, misogynists, even Nazis. Which is highly ironic and hypocritical, given how racist the regressive left ideology itself is. This ideology absolutely hates and detests white people, and can't stop denigrating, insulting and shaming them. According to them white people are the cause of all the problems in our society. They are scum. They are racists and sexists. They are "deplorables". White people are being constantly accused of all kinds of horrible things, and shamed into obedience.

This ideology does not listen to people. It shames people. It looks and feels like a totalitarian ideology that does not work for the people, for the citizens. It's an ideology that promulgates being morally superior. To know better. It's a smug and condescending ideology.

When year after year after year people have been subjected to this kind of abuse, when year after year they have been insulted and attacked simply because of the color of their skin, when their worries are not heard but instead laughed at and dismissed, is it any wonder that when somebody comes with an alternative message, the people will listen to him? When somebody comes and treats them with respect, and wants to raise them once again to the status of normalcy, is it any wonder that people will listen to him? When people have been emotionally abused for so long, they will pay attention to somebody giving a better alternative.

So no. You did not let this happen. You made this happen. You can call them racists and Nazis all you like, but the real culprit can be found in the mirror. The citizens are not racists and Nazis; they are normal people. Normal people who are fed up with your constant authoritarian abuse. Most of these people did not vote for Trump. They voted against you.

Some journalists understand this perfectly. (That article is amazing. I recommend reading it.)

Is it bad that Trump was elected? Probably not. In fact, it's probably much better that he was elected than if Clinton had, especially from the perspective of global politics. Tensions between the United States and Russia have been increasing over the years, especially due to the economic sanctions that the former has imposed on the latter. Russia has become more and more desperate over the years, even talking about drastic measures (up to nuclear strikes.)

Clinton did not show any signs of wanting to amend, or even ease, the relationship with Russia. On the contrary. Trump, however, is likely to want to ease the economic sanctions, and come to better terms with Russia. If this ends up happening (which it likely will), that will be good for the entire world, but especially Europe, and the United States itself. We really don't want a nuclear superpower to feel cornered, for it to feel like the entire rest of the world is against them. That's not good for anybody.

Of course this is complex world-wide politics, and I am in no way an expert. However, I do think that, globally, Trump's victory will end up doing more good than Clinton's victory would have. (I also doubt that Trump will do any of the things that the regressive left is envisioning him doing. Maybe he'll do a few minor things within the United States itself, but other than that, I don't think there will be much harm to the rest of the world. Maybe it will be a bit of the opposite, in fact.)

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Why Trump's victory was important and significant

Whether Trump's victory of the presidential election of the United States will end up in a global catastrophe will remain to be seen. Personally I highly, highly doubt it; all that fear-mongering is just complete bullshit. Anyway, that's not the point of this post.

Trump's victory was important and significant for other reasons.

The leftist media, both in the United States and in the rest of the world, was highly biased and partisan in this election. It reached rather outrageous levels within the United States itself. It was basically a constant barrage against Trump, while largely downplaying and even ignoring any fault that Clinton may have had. The leftist media really, really pushed Clinton to become the president. The smearing campaign against Trump was so global in scale that it might even be unprecedented in the history of American (and even world-wide) press.

Yet, they lost. And that's why this result was so incredibly important.

This loss signals to them that they do not control the narrative anymore. They do not elect presidents anymore. They do not control the people anymore. They do not form the de facto oligarchy that they thought they would. They were, essentially, stripped of their powers. The people rebelled against them.

This loss tells to them that smearing campaigns do not work anymore. That being highly biased and partisan does not work anymore. It tells them that people have become tired of being told who they have to vote for. It tells them that people have become tired of being smeared and insulted because they hold the "wrong" opinions. It tells to them that people have stopped caring if they are called names, like "racists", "sexists" or "misogynists".

The leftist media in the United States, and largely elsewhere in the world, is now throwing a hissy-fit. They are really sore losers. And this is, I must say, a joy to watch. It just fills me with glee and satisfaction. Take that. You are not controlling the narrative anymore. You are not controlling politics anymore. You deserved this. Now cry some more, like the little babies you are.

Regardless of what happens in the next years, this was a really important victory because of that, and I'm really, really glad that it happened. The leftist media really needed a wakeup call. They really needed a smack in the face. And now they are crying, and I'm enjoying every second of it.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Politically correct language

Can you tell what is the difference between these terms? One of them is not like the others:
  • "Non-white people"
  • "Colored people"
  • "People of color"
To the average person they might sound like pretty much synonymous, just three different ways of saying the same thing. But they are not! Two of them are racist, while the remaining one is the "politically correct" term.

More specifically, the third one is ok, while the other ones are offensive. At least at this moment. Why? Who knows. The phase of the Moon, maybe?

Let's see how long before the third one becomes inappropriate as well. I'm really wondering if social justice warriors will then go back to their old YouTube videos where they use the term and remove them.

As with all political correctness, it's pretty much arbitrary and ever-shifting. Again and again I encounter that yet another word is, somehow, "racist", or at the very least "inappropriate". Like the word "oriental". It's somehow inappropriate. Because reasons. (How long before "Asian" becomes inappropriate? A couple of years, I bet.)

Sunday, October 30, 2016

"Six meanings of evolution"

Some creationists, when talking about the theory of evolution, will bring up this argument that there are "six meanings of evolution." Namely:

Cosmic evolution: the origin of time, space, and matter from nothing in the “big bang”
Chemical evolution: all elements “evolved” from hydrogen
Stellar evolution: stars and planets formed from gas clouds
Organic evolution: life begins from inanimate matter
Macro-evolution: animals and plants change from one type into another
Micro-evolution: variations form within the “kind”

I'm not 100% sure who invented this, but as far as I know, it was most probably Kent Hovind. (His son, Eric Hovind, who just loves to parrot all of his father's arguments and speeches like a robot, also regularly presents this "argument".)

The claim isn't true, and is nonsensical. Those names are completely made up by creationists (probably by Kent Hovind) and the first ones have absolutely nothing to do with the theory of evolution. It's a scientific theory of biology, not cosmogony, cosmology, nuclear physics, astrophysics nor abiogenesis, which is what those first four are talking about. Also the theory does not distinguish between "macro-evolution" and "micro-evolution", which are also more or less made-up terms. No scientist has ever claimed that any of those four things are part of the theory of evolution (which, once again, is a theory of biology).

Yet, no matter how many times this is explained to creationists, they keep parroting this over and over. Because, you see, for some unfathomable reason you can see this list repeated by other creationists, on websites, on YouTube videos, on Chick tracts... you name it. No matter how many times they are explained that the list is just nonsensical, they just keep parroting it, like it were some kind of great argument.

And that's what puzzles me: Why do they keep parroting this, and why do they think it's some kind of argument against evolution? What exactly is the point they are trying to make?

I mean, seriously. Watch some Kent Hovind lecture where he presents this list. He just presents it and... well, nothing. There is no followup, no argument, no point. There is no explanation of what exactly he's trying to say (other than "only the last one is true"). He presents the list as if it were somehow revealing. Revealing of what? Who knows.

He's not the only one who does it. I have seen several YouTube videos of creationists parroting the list (usually without referencing the source) as if it were some kind of great argument, but without any kind of explanation or point to it. They just present the list... and then nothing. They go to something else. The point they were trying to make by presenting the list remains a mystery.

It just goes to show how dishonest creationists are. Most of them know that those terms are nonsensical, and that the theory of evolution does not encompass those fields of science, because they have been told so over and over. Yet they keep repeating the list as factual.

An honest person would find out what the theory of evolution really is about (a theory of biology explaining the diversification of life through the mechanism of descent with modification and natural selection), see that it has nothing to do with astrophysics or particle physics, and then stop presenting that list as inaccurate and pointless.

But creationists are not honest. "An honest creationist" is one of the biggest oxymorons in existence.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Social justice invades everything, including now VR development

I have been writing quite a lot about the modern social justice cult. I have also been writing quite a lot about how disappointing VR has been. It was only a matter of time before the two would meet, because social justice wants to invade everything.

Oculus announce $10m diversity pledge.

What does technology have to do with social justice and diversity? Who knows. But apparently to Oculus "diversity" is so important that they are going to invest a whopping 10 million dollars on it. In an unspecified manner, somehow.

Of course "diversity" (scare quotes intentional) in social justice vocabulary means the exact opposite of actual diversity, par for the course for such an Orwellian totalitarian ideology. The word, as used by them, doesn't mean what it means to everybody else. To them "diversity" means that only one opinion is allowed, only one political stance is allowed, diversity of opinions is not tolerated.

Technology and technological development is genderless, raceless, and completely neutral in all other such categories. It's just circuits, wires, metal, plastic and glass. The main focus of technology development is how to make those devices as efficient as possible, and as cheap as possible, for maximum benefit to the consumer.

Oculus could have spent those 10 million dollars to improve their VR headset, to make it cheaper, to benefit the consumer. But no. They are going to just throw it away, for absolutely no benefit to anybody (except the swindlers who will be getting that money for what amounts to zero work and zero beneficial products.) Which is doubly facepalmy given that the Oculus Rift isn't exactly a ginormous success (it has something like a 0.1% adoption rate among Steam users, the growth of this adoption rate having essentially stalled to a halt.) One would think that they would have much better use for those 10 million dollars, but apparently not.

For a long time I was of the opinion that it's a good thing that the Oculus Rift exists, and that it would be detrimental for the consumers if they were to fail and go bankrupt. After all, healthy competition is good for the consumers. Monopolies are bad for the consumers.

I have now changed my opinion: I wish they crash and go bankrupt. Just throw even more money away at "diversity" (whatever the heck that means to them) and sink. I don't care.

Needless to say, I highly doubt I will ever buy an Oculus Rift.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Flavorless pizzas

As the saying goes, you get what you pay for. And that's often true about food as well.

Particularly, quite often if you go to an ultra-cheap pizzeria, the pizzas are really, really flavorless and tasteless. They might have a really, really mild flavor, but overall they often taste like nothing.

This is actually a bit of a mystery to me. How do they do that? I'm completely serious: If I purposefully wanted to make such a flavorless pizza myself, I wouldn't know how! Even if I buy the cheapest possible ingredients at the grocery store and make a half-assed pizza, it will taste significantly better than those at most cheap pizzerias. I honestly don't know how to make such a tasteless pizza even if I wanted to.

My hypothesis is that these pizzerias don't actually get their ingredients from the same sources as grocery stores do. Instead, they get them for much cheaper from some other sources, and the quality of the ingredients is simply abysmal. So abysmal that they don't even sell them in regular stores at all. Like flour that would otherwise go to the garbage, cheese that even pigs wouldn't eat (and would likewise be thrown out), and so on. That's the only thing I can think of how to make such tasteless pizzas.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Antiquated web pages and mailing lists

The internet was a rather different place in the early and mid-90's. If you didn't use the internet back then, you wouldn't even believe how different it was.

This very blog service is an excellent example of how the internet has changed over the years. Back in those times, there was absolutely nothing even resembling this. In fact, the technology (in browsers and overall the HTML specification and all other kinds of specifications needed for this) just wasn't there. Back then it was unthinkable to actually have some kind of content editor usable from within the web browser itself. (Web forms did exist back then, which could be used by a user to send data to the server, but they were significantly more primitive than they generally are today.)

(And this isn't even going to things that we take today for granted such as YouTube, which nobody could have even imagined in their wildest dreams back then. The necessary technology was simply non-existent. The necessary video codecs hadn't been invented yet, the necessary internet protocols hadn't been invented yet, obviously web browsers were completely incapable of anything even resembling video streaming, internet connection speeds were but a tiny fraction of the required for live streaming (and that's assuming you didn't have to pay per minute, or per transferred kilobyte) and, moreover, computer hardware wasn't even close to powerful enough for anything like YouTube to be even theoretically possible. After all, video streaming and decoding requires quite a lot of computing power.)

Search engines were really, really primitive back in those days. In fact, Google, which we have been taking for granted for over a decade now, didn't even exist back then. (And even when Google did their first search engine service, it was significantly more primitive, and uglier, than it is today.)

Social media didn't exist either. Only a tiny, tiny fraction of people (mostly university students and staff, an the employees of some companies) had the possibility of creating a personal home page, publicly accessible through an URL.

Dynamic content was almost non-existent. 99.9% of web pages were static, meaning that their source HTML file was just a fixed (rather than generated) file stored in the server's hard drive. In the vast majority of cases this file was manually written, rather than programmatically generated. Some web pages might have had a bit of dynamically generated content (such as news reports, statistics that were automatically updated on a regular basis, and in some cases even user-submitted content), but almost invariably they used some custom technology (such as scripts written by the company itself) to achieve this.

Nobody had any idea back then how to create good-looking web pages. The WWW was in its early infancy. Most personal pages consisted of basically nothing more than black text on a white background, with a few embedded images at most (all of it in hand-written HTML, of course.) Fancier pages used a black background and white text, for extra coolness factor! Some people might have tried to play with text size and colors, but that usually only ended up looking more horrible. Even plain text files (ie. ascii .txt files, with no formatting of any kind) were common.

One very common custom back in those days was to have a separate page of links to other places. Just that. A page containing a list of random links to other places. Often there was no explanation, logic, rhyme or reason for the list; it just was there. (In most cases people created such pages solely because everybody else also had such pages, and that's it.)

Online forums, accessible through the WWW with a web browser, did not exist. Basically the only online forum systems were usenet news (which, sadly, is nowadays almost dead) and mailing lists.

Mailing lists are a rather horrible form of "online forum". Rather than have a web page where you can browse threaded discussions, you get every single message by every single person participating in any of the discussions to your email inbox. (Even back then most email software supported filtering of emails, and automatically sending them to different folders based on some filtering rules, but still... you could have hundreds or even thousands of messages from a mailing list, to wade through, including discussion threads you might not be interested in at all.)

Why am I doing this nostalgia trip to the distant past?

Because some projects, even those being actively developed today, seem to be stuck in the mid-90's in terms of their online content.

As an example, consider the libpng library project: Look at their home page at http://www.libpng.org/pub/png/ (they even have a Yahoo! search box on that page, right from 1995!) Also look at, for example, their "Other PNG Links and Stuff" page. Their usage manual for the library? In plain text format (with no alternatives.)

Those are, in fact, excellent examples of what typical web pages used to look like in the mid-90's. It's like a window to the past.

And their "discussion forum" to ask questions about the usage of the library? A mailing list, of course. With no alternatives. (Yes, try searching for actual png discussion forums. They don't exist. They don't seem to exist even on usenet.)

It's just horrendous. And I wish that were the only example, but unfortunately it isn't. Quite many software projects out there seem to be stuck in the mid-90's.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Will people just shut up about "4k" already?

The "8.5th" generation of consoles is being published at this moment, with the Xbox One S, the PS4 Pro and the "Project Scorpio" upcoming Xbox console.

When you watch reviews about this eg. on YouTube, it seems that all people can talk about is "4k". 4k this. 4k that. Does it support 4k? Is the 4k support good enough? 4k here. 4k there. 4k 4k 4k 4k 4k 4k 4k 4k 4k 4k 4k...

Please SHUT UP about 4k already! I'm getting sick and tired of it. What strange obsessive compulsive disorder do people have with "4k". Who the fucking cares? Isn't there anything more important and relevant to talk about than the fucking "4k"?

Sheesh. It's like "4k" is the next coming of Christ or something. I don't care. Nobody cares. Shut up about it already.