anonymous asked:

Zayn is killing it. No 1 on the billboard charts that 1D never had. I'm happy he is free and smashing it. But sad that 1D couldn't, even with so much potential. Kinda makes Zayn's the-1d-music-is-not-great-and-mine-is argument valid. :(

One Direction the band enjoyed (and continues to enjoy) massive record breaking success completely unparalleled in the industry. Do you think their multi millions care they didn’t have huge chart success? That they made their money through licensing and merchandising? Do you think the label with their billions care?

Chart success is one route to financial success and industry legitimacy, but it’s not the only one, clearly.

Comparing Zayn’s solo career and successes to One Direction is apples and oranges.


Hey guys, came across this on EBay….need help determining its legitimacy.

So, I type in “rare alpacasso” and usually I come up with bootlegs or KawaiiPlushLoves listings….this came up. The original pic for this one is the Okinawa; but as I scroll through the listings pics, it’s got a Cherry girl regional, then a 12cm Tokyo tower, and the last pic is a school girls alpacasso….soooo lol legit or not?

It’s listed in Japan; and what’s also off about the pics, if you look around the first two, they look very badly photoshopped *around them it’s quite pixelated*
So yea, just curious….and here’s the listing: http://m.ebay.com/itm/ALPACASSO-Plush-REGIONAL-See-Saa-saasso-47cm-SUPER-RARE-/291679009095?nav=SEARCH

On legitimate vs illegitimate trans women

During my absence from posting, I received a slow but steady stream of messages from people who were outraged at my “misgendering” of other trans women. I think mostly this was a reaction to my referring to anti-Smith College activists and self-proclaimed transwoman Justin Killian as a “cis man”. As atranspaige pointed out, Killian is simply a suburban white male teen, drunk on white privilege and male privilege. Why any sjw in the world would be supporting him, I just don’t get. But, the steady stream of notes from (mostly teenaged, mostly female) sjw activists shows that he does have some support.

Was my dismissal of Killian as “not actually trans” part of the reason that a “gender-critical-critical” tumblr blogger remarked how “convenient” if was that I had “created a definition of legitimate trans that excludes everyone except me” in a now-deleted post? It’s quite possible. And it sure makes me sound like a terrible hypocrite! So let’s address this idea of what it would take (if anything) to be a “legitimate” trans woman. (Note: my perspective on this differs a bit from that of thirdwaytrans, though I do appreciate many things in his post.)

Historically (meaning: from the pre-history of transsexuality until the mid-1990’s), it was understood that every trans woman who transitioned would change her gender presentation from “male” to “female”. That usually involved changing the way you groomed yourself (new haircut, new clothes), the way you behaved (specifically with regards to sex-role stereotypes), and almost always taking hormones or getting surgery to make your (male) body look more female. Presumably, the goal was to move yourself, in society’s mind, from the category male to the category female. Or, for trans people who really hated the gender system (count my 20-something self in here), the goal was to move oneself out of the category male, and into a “neither” category - though this was pretty fringe behavior in the 1990’s.

However, within modern trans activism these assumption have broken down. As Justin Killian and tumblr whacko littlemammal have shown, transition (as historically understood) is purely optional in modern conceptions of what it means to be a trans woman. Or alternately, transition is simply an empty signifier, and one has transitioned if they say they have, because internal identity is sacrosanct and trumps all observables. Moreover, since “trans women are women” and have “always been female”, it is now (by trans decree!) a typical female physical characteristic to have a full beard and chest hair. In fact, if you mention that this body hair pattern is ~literally a male secondary sex characteristic~, you are a transmisogynist! Likewise, it is now “typical female behavior” to be an adult with a penis and repeatedly rape your 14 year old female relative, a la trans “heroine” Dennis “Allison” Woolbert. Uh, what the fuck?

Clearly, the “female beard” thing is just disordered thinking based on uncritical acceptance of Anne Fausto-Sterling’s psuedo-science and a deliberate misappropriation of the feminist thought that a female’s refusal to perform femininity doesn’t make her “less of a woman”. Humans are sexually dimorphic, and on average male and female bodies form a two-humped distribution on things like height, hip-to-waist ratio, and body hair distribution: these observables are called secondary sex characteristics. Since these are distributions, they overlap in the tails: for example some females have male-typical facial hair distribution (beards), but that doesn’t make them male! Likewise, some males have average female height, but that doesn’t make them women! And no matter what, a male with a beard is not “female”. If you don’t understand this, lay off the pomo bullshit and pot smoking, and go ask a kindergarten teacher. Also please read that critique of Fausto-Sterling I linked!

But the rape thing is legit dangerous. I can’t get behind this kind of fuckery, and I refuse to support it. Trans women: if you support a child rapist over the girl he raped, you are a disgusting person. End of! So actually, it is vitally important to separate out “legitimate” versus “illegitimate” trans women. This is vital for trans women who transition as teens, for trans men, and for women born female.

And here is my proposal for being a “legitimate trans woman”:

  • don’t rape women
  • don’t rape other trans women
  • don’t engage in male-pattern violence against women and children, or other males
  • be realistic about the fact that if you don’t look physically female, people may not gender you as a woman
  • understand that if you behave in stereotypically male ways, your behavior doesn’t magically become “feminine” based on your say-so

Notice what is missing from this list: no mention of sexual orientation, no mention of age of transition, no requirement to pass as female, no requirement to have female friends. You don’t need to understand feminism or even have any self-awareness! And there is absolutely no requirement on “what kind of a woman” a trans woman decides to be. Personally, I’ve met trans women who embodied literally every cultural stereotype of “woman”: bookish nerds, classic vamps, hippy farmers, judgmental southern belles with helmet hair, homeless crust punks, and ambitious careerists. Not to mention the housedress-wearing, stay-at-home grandma types. 

Actually, you’re not even required to live in a fashion remotely resembling “a woman”, in order to be a “legitimate” trans woman! I’ve met plenty of trans women who came out of the gay community, who didn’t seem to have any irl female friends to speak of. They essentially lived in a male-only world. But they were still “legitimate” trans women! Same for the IT professionals with turtlenecks, androgynous slacks, and long ponytails, who worked in all-male environments and whose only interaction with anyone female was with their wives. Even they can be legitimate trans women! And I’ve met trans women who were boyish in the extreme, and I would think “Well, I really don’t get it, but ok sister." 

Also notice: there is also nothing about motivation. From my perspective, it doesn’t matter if you’re transitioning due to childhood trauma, persistent depression, body dysmorphia, autogyenphilia, or whatever else - because frankly I find people’s motivations irrelevant, except perhaps to explain bad behavior.

So back to poor Justin. He does not get to enact stereotypically “cishet white male” behavior, and then call it “feminine” and therefore declare himself “a woman”, all while advancing an expressly anti-female agenda. What kind of disordered thought process would that require? Imagine if your friend said "Please try this delicious pizza I made” and you said “Wait, that’s borscht, and you put some syrup of ipecac in there to make me puke!” Not the same damn thing! And also, fuck off weirdo! Duh!!!!

We already have a name for someone who behaves like Justin, and I am ~literally~ respecting his gender expression by referring to him with male pronouns. His identity, on the other hand, I frankly don’t care about. Or anyone else’s identity, for that matter, unless they’re asking me politely to respect it. What matters is observables: our bodies and our behavior.

Libyan rebels plan to begin exporting oil themselves

This is a big deal for the opposition council. The Libyan rebel government’s deal with Qatar to export oil has obvious benefits to their cause, and they aren’t strictly economic. One aspect of the Libyan struggle we can’t overlook is the need for others to perceive their legitimacy — the more the rebellion shows a unified, proactive, and competent front, the more pressure it may put on Gaddafi’s beleaguered allies to desert him. The immediately refused rebel ceasefire offer was a good example, and this follows suit — the practical proof that oil exports can resume despite Gaddafi’s efforts to the contrary is another psychological victory against a regime that’s already reported as suffering key defections by officials. source

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Rt Hon David Cameron MP, House of Commons, Houses of Parliament, The Cabinet: Give 16 and 17 year olds the right to vote in the EU Referendum
In the Conservative manifesto, a referendum on EU membership has been proposed by the end of 2017. Currently this means that every person over the age of 18 can vote in this proposed referendum. I would like to ask the Prime Minister, his Cabinet, and Parliament to extend the franchise on this referendum to 16. There are many reasons why I propose this change. Firstly because I am currently 16 and I wasn't able to vote in the General Election of the 7th May. I, and many other 16 and 17 year olds, would have loved to have voted in that election. I feel as though I am more than capable of making an informed choice in that election and this coming referendum considering the fact that I am doing an A Level in Politics and I hope to do a degree in the subject too. I am aware that most of my peers are also capable of making an informed decision on such a huge topic that will affect their lives, with or without studying Politics at school. Secondly, as a 16 year old, I feel as though this referendum will affect me and my generation the most because we are the next generation. We should have the right to make this decision because this decision will affect the politics of our generation and that in turn will affect our whole lives. We do not know what the exact implications of this referendum will be but what we do know is that our generation will be the ones that will 'bear the brunt' of the results. As we are the most affected, we should have the right to decide whether we want to stay in the EU or not. Also, if 16 and 17 year olds were able to vote in the Scottish Independence referendum in September 2014, shouldn't all 16 and 17 year olds be able to vote in this referendum? It is unfair if you give 16 and 17 year olds the vote in the referendum in 2014 without doing so in the upcoming referendum. Also, the Guardian has reported many peers in the House of Lords also want to extend the franchise to 16. The peers are renowned for the expertise in all sorts of matters so if those in favour of the EU are arguing that the best way of making this referendum legitimate is widening the franchise, surely they are right? Finally, by extending the franchise in this referendum to 16, you are making the result more legitimate because more people can vote in this referendum and more people have given their consent to the result, making the result ultimately more democratic. Overall, I hope you consider my argument and choose to widen the franchise to make the result of the referendum more legitimate and a decision made for my generation by my generation.

Please give 16 and 17 year olds the vote in the upcoming EU referendum. Please sign the petition I made so hopefully this referendum will be more democratic. Thank you

The Electoral Red Line

What with all the talk of “red lines” out in the political universe, let me offer my own warning about a red line we are at least in sight of, if not quite ready to cross: the line between fighting an election, and delegitimating elections themselves.

Here’s the thing: in our democracy, elections are one of the primary ways we establish the legitimacy of the government. I may not like who wins, but the mere fact that I had the chance to vote (even if I didn’t) is seen to make the outcome legitimate. So long as I was not unfairly denied the chance to vote, and so long as the votes were fairly counted, and so long as I have the fair chance to vote in the future, I’m stuck with the result. The other side won. Get over it, to channel Mr. Justice Scalia.

This three part test–the fair chance to vote, the fair counting of votes, and the fair chance to vote in the future–is a pretty tough, but extremely important, combination to pull off. Citizens of countries that manage this generally trust their governments, believe that they have a real say in shaping the decisions that affect their lives, and otherwise perceive themselves as part of a healthy national community. By contrast, people who live in  countries that don’t figure out how to meet the three “fairs” often believe their leaders to be corrupt, their fates to be limited, and their governments bad.

Unfortunately, we seem increasingly hell bent on blowing this. We try to drive voters off voting rolls while claiming that we are really interested in preventing the non-occurring epidemic of in-person vote fraud. We put political hacks in charge of counting the vote and watch as they litigate what is or is not a real vote. We accuse one president of getting in office just because his daddy picked the Supreme Court justices who ruled in his favor (George Bush), and then accuse the next one of being illegitimate because he’s supposedly not an American and/or was elected through voter fraud – or, perhaps more seriously, because he is an Other (black, Muslim, you name it).

While I get how all this works as a short-term political tactic – the politics of corruption and fear are hardly a new phenomenon – I am afraid that we are at risk of crossing the infamous red line: the point of no return. At some point, the endless bombardment of negative ads, of claims that some candidate or another is illegitimate, and of ceaseless assertions that the election’s results were corrupted may well have the effect of convincing large numbers of Americans that their political system is their enemy. Ronald Reagan’s famous quip, that the nine scariest words in the English language are “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help,” speaks exactly to this point. It “works.” But it might not work.

Irony lies in the fact that our strengths are our weaknesses. Winning elections might well destroy the point of elections. It’s something to think about.

Watch on therussophile.tumblr.com

Widely neglected video of U.N. Election Observers confirming legitimacy of 2012 Syrian Elections. NATO countries blocked overseas Syrians from voting in their Syrian Embassies.

Submitted by IWB, on February 9th, 2016 Published on Jun 18, 2014 Footage of United Nations Press Conference sponsored by Syrian Mission to the UN.

One of the crucial factors that permits governments to do the monstrous things they habitually do is the sense of legitimacy on the part of the stupefied public. The average citizen may not like - may even strongly object to - the policies and exactions of his government. But he has been imbued with the idea - carefully indoctrinated by centuries of governmental propaganda - that the government is his legitimate sovereign, and that it would be wicked or mad to refuse to obey its dictates. It is this sense of legitimacy that the State’s intellectuals have fostered over the ages, aided and abetted by all the trappings of legitimacy: flags, rituals, ceremonies, awards, constitutions, etc.
—  Murray N. Rothbard
So America, once the media and cameras leave Ferguson, which they will do, we must ask ourselves: Who do we want to be as a country? Because as uncomfortable as it is to admit, Ferguson is who we are right now.
—  Karen Attiah in The Washington Post. In the battle for America’s identity, Ferguson is Ground Zero
Legislation - Public Housing Residents - Section 3

Housing Authorities must have 30% of new hires come from public housing tenants, with contractors providing 20-25% of low-income residents with jobs.  This is an exciting proposal, but will get slaughtered as a new form of quotas/affirmative action.  This worked really well in New Orleans, but the labor supply there slightly warranted it.  Ill be interested to see how this plays out, very ambitious legislation.