“My Kind of Misogyny”

Amber A’Lee Frost (boldface mine):

And isn’t that the simpler explanation of left dissent from Team Clinton? It’s not that critics of Hillary are largely misogynist or even that they’re obsessed with political purity. It’s that she’s a proven neoliberal warhawk, a Wall Street sycophant, and a consistent enemy of the poor.

It’s a strange sort of “misogynist” who condemns Clinton for her endorsement of “welfare reform,” which eviscerated a social safety net that primarily benefited women and children. And who are these misogynists who question Clinton’s time on the board of Wal­mart, a company known for its mass exploitation, particularly of women? What a misogyny that decrees the women of Iraq deserve lives free of American war! There’s a misogyny that advocates for childcare, healthcare, free university parental leave? O brave new world, that has such misogynists in it!

I’ve made this point before, but Clinton partisans have made a really big mistake in two ways. First, they act as if opposition to Clinton is largely ‘BernieBro driven’, as opposed to based on serious criticism. Second, the condescending hectoring about electability (more about that in a future post) does nothing to address legitimate concerns about her history, including her full-bore advocacy for welfare reform. Which is to say, deadbeats. Who, if the unofficial house organ of the Clinton administration, The New Republic, was to be believed, looked like this:
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Links 2/6/16

Links for you. Science:

The Bugs Behind The Bed Bug Genome: New research came from a famous bed bug lineage
Deep-sea ‘purple sock’ provides clues to early life
The Zika conspiracies have begun
Look Somewhere Else for Romance
If you fail to reproduce another scientist’s results, this journal wants to know

Other:

The Left
4 Ways Utah is Dealing with Overly-Wide Streets
Oregon standoff: Bundy occupation leaves scars behind
The Democrats Effectively Tied in Iowa, But Sanders Won the Future (and the condescension from too many Clinton supporters only exacerbates things)
What Bernie Sanders Has Already Won
Twilight of the Superpredators (wrote about this here; Hillary Clinton used superpredator rhetoric)
New OECD tax agreement improves transparency — but the US doesn’t sign and the US press won’t tell you
Why Hillary Clinton’s razor-thin Iowa win is really a crushing defeat (the key thing is that, as I’ve been saying all along, conservatives realize Clinton is vulnerable on the cronyism/corruption charges)
Chicago Professor Resigns Amid Sexual Misconduct Investigation
Everyone Is Wrong About the Bernie Bros: How a necessary critique of leftist sexism deteriorated into a dumb flame war
Is TPP dead if Sanders becomes President?
D.C. Will Form Disability Advisory Committee to Improve Snow Response
How class could eventually remake the Democratic Party
Flint Probably Has Bigger Problems Than Lead Pipes
American capitalism has failed us: We’re overworked, underemployed and more powerless than ever before
Bernie Sanders and the New Populism
A public backlash against the Malheur occupiers also suggests American sympathy for those who work for the US Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the US Fish and Wildlife Department.
Wealthy Donors Pump Millions Into Sanders’ Campaign In Last-Ditch Effort To Destroy His Credibility (funny)
Sanders Beats Clinton 49-49: The Real Story Behind the Iowa Numbers
New Yorker Joins Open Season on Bernie Sanders

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This Seems Socially Disruptive

The U.N. made a statement (boldface mine):

The United Nations on Friday urged countries hit by the dangerous Zika virus to let women have access to contraception and abortion…

“How can they ask these women not to become pregnant, but not offer… the possibility to stop their pregnancies?” spokeswoman Cecile Pouilly told reporters…

But UN human rights chief UN rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said this warning meant little in countries that ban or heavily restrict access to reproductive health services like contraception and abortion.

“The advice of some governments to women to delay getting pregnant ignores the reality that many women and girls simply cannot exercise control over whether or when or under what circumstances they become pregnant, especially in an environment where sexual violence is so common,” Zeid said in a statement.

“In situations where sexual violence is rampant, and sexual and reproductive health services are criminalised, or simply unavailable, efforts to halt this crisis will not be enhanced by placing the focus on advising women and girls not to become pregnant,” he said.

Instead, he insisted that governments must “ensure women, men and adolescents have access to comprehensive and affordable quality sexual and reproductive health services and information, without discrimination.”

This, his office pointed out, includes contraception — including emergency contraception — maternal healthcare and safe abortion services.

This is like catnip for wingnuts. The only thing missing are black helicopters piloted by Planned Parenthood workers.

I told you this would be a social problem (whether it’s actually a significant medical problem is unclear).

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Links 2/5/16

Links for you. Science:

The Villain of CRISPR (a little too much, but it’s a point of view)
Doing a disservice to Future “Heroes of CRISPR”
10,000-Year-Old Massacre Does Not Bolster Claim That War Is Innate
The Water Next Time: Professor Who Helped Expose Crisis in Flint Says Public Science Is Broken (must-read)
When does peer review make no damn sense?

Other:

No Parking Here
Economic Growth Isn’t Everything
Paul Krugman, Bernie Sanders, and the Experts
Mayor Bowser Announces 12 Affordable Housing Projects Costing $82.2 Million (mind you, this is about 2 months of population growth…)
Baylor faces accusations of ignoring sex assault victims
Florida House advances sweeping ban on abortions
30 Years After Explosion, Challenger Engineer Still Blames Himself
A #BernieLady in a BroWorld
How Free Trade Killed the American Working Class
Former treasurer of Michigan: The Flint water crisis was ‘decades in the making’
Free Trade With China Wasn’t Such a Great Idea for the U.S.
The radical left has Bernie Sanders all wrong
Third Way Misleads Hard in a Weak Effort to Discredit Social Security Expansion (and which Democrat do you think Third Way is supporting?)
Ben Carson’s Campaign Is An ATM For His Advisors (STAB…STAB…STAB…)
Chamber of Commerce expects Clinton to support TPP as president

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When Infectious Disease Has Social Consequences

I might have metioned once or twice that the Zika virus could have similar effects on attitudes towards abortion that rubella did. From Brazil (boldface mine):

But now some activists here are drawing comparisons between the Zika epidemic and the debate over abortion in the United States in the 1960s, when an outbreak of rubella, a virus that can also cause microcephaly, resulted in thousands of babies born with birth defects. The concerns over rubella, also called German measles, paved the way for states like California to allow abortion when a fetus is substantially damaged.

“Pregnant women across Brazil are now in a panic,” said Silvia Camurça, a director of SOS Corpo, a feminist group in Recife. “The fears over the Zika virus are giving us a rare opening to challenge the religious fundamentalists who put the lives of thousands of women at risk in Brazil each year to maintain laws belonging in the dark ages.”

As in the United States before the Supreme Court’s legalization of abortion in 1973, a clandestine abortion industry thrives throughout Brazil. Some illegal providers charge thousands of dollars, risking arrest and the closing of their clinics.

Estimates on the number of illegal abortions in Brazil vary widely. Drawing on hospital records showing that 150,000 women seek medical attention each year for complications from illegal abortions, Brazilian scholars estimate that as many as 850,000 abortions are performed illegally on an annual basis.

The reality that, for as long as women have been getting pregnant, they have wanted to get ‘unpregnant’, seems to escape anti-abortion advocates, who resort to a tactic familiar to those in the U.S.:

“With microcephaly, the child is already very much formed, and the parents are conscious of this,” said Dr. Lenise Garcia, a biology professor at the University of Brasília and the president of Brazil Without Abortion, a group against easing the abortion laws. “Getting an abortion creates guilt that will stay with the woman for the rest of her life.”

Or, maybe a woman who is desperate enough to seek a third trimester abortion knows exactly what she is doing. Maybe she thinks the infection is the tragedy and the abortion is the blessing.

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Links 2/4/16

Links for you. Science:

Letter to the Editor: Exceptional Data in Paper on “The effect of meridian massage on BM, BMI, WC and HC in simple obesity patients: a randomized controlled trial”
Retractions – One now, perhaps more in the future
Error found in study of first ancient African genome
There Was No Vast Migration of Eurasians Into Africa
Why Don’t People Eat Turtle Soup Anymore?

Other:

Paul Krugman Misunderstands Bernie Sanders
Delusions
On Kenneth Thorpe’s Analysis of Senator Sanders’ Single-Payer Reform Plan (but they’re not Serious Economists, so they will be ignored)
Hillary and the Dunning School (though one long-time reader, who is older than Clinton, said, “I was never taught that bullshit”)
The boycott Israel movement can’t have it both ways on LGBT equality
Meet the New Harry and Louise
How it feels to be a poor mother living without heat during a blizzard
Is Nominating Bernie Sanders a Worthwhile Gamble?
How Hillary is Already Complicit with the Next Subprime Real Estate Bubble
Low-paid Senate workers’ boss quietly rolls back their hard-fought raise
The Collision Sport on Trial
Hillary’s Latest Dirty Trick Outrages Even Kumbaya Progressive Thom Hartmann
Michigan’s Great Stink
More Notes on Reparations
Justice Department says it does not track data D.C. activist is seeking (bullshit)

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Benevolent Dictator

It would appear that poisoning the children of Flint and letting students attend schools infested with rodents and mold in Detroit is even too much for Republican Governor Rick Snyder, since state-appointed Emergency Manager Darnell Earley has finally been fired. That said, the deeper problem is one of democracy–appointed dictators who are unaccountable to the electorate typically don’t meet the citizens’ demand.

For crazy things like water and schools.

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