Bloody shovel

Don't call it a spade

Reason

Surfin’ the web yesterday, I come across this:

The Strange Sexual Quirk of Filipino Seafarers

How the pressures of the shipping industry have shaped everything about this maritime culture. Right down to their penile implants.

Penile implants?
Many Filipino sailors make small incisions in their penises and slide tiny plastic or stone balls — the size of M&M’s — underneath the skin in order to enhance sexual pleasure for prostitutes and other women they encounter in port cities, especially in Rio de Janeiro. “This ‘secret weapon of the Filipinos,’ as a second mate phrased it, has therefore obviously something to do,” Lamvik wrote in his thesis, “‘with the fact that ‘the Filipinos are so small, and the Brazilian women are so big’ as another second mate put it.”
What the hell? That must hurt like a bitch. Why would they do that?

Viewed in this context, bolitas is more than just a physical oddity adopted for the benefit of port women. It’s an important element of the Filipinos’ larger battle to assert their masculinity and compensate in a rivalry that they can’t always win aboard the ship. “It’s part of that competition that starts in the labor market that then bleeds over into culture,” McKay said. “They are dealing with how others see them.”

Apparently, the port competition is one that they feel they can win, and not just because of bolitas. Filipino sailors take a sort of Pretty Woman tack in their relationships with prostitutes, treating them as more than mere objects in a sexual marketplace — and above all, the Filipinos think, treating them better than other sailors do. As one Filipino officer told McKay: “‘The women prefer Filipinos because we treat them nice, not like other nationalities,'” he said. “‘[Sailors from other countries] think because they pay, they can treat them badly … But the Filipinos — we treat them like girlfriends. We pay too, but we’re nice, we smile, we even court them. That’s what makes the Filipino special. We’re romantic.'”

Romantic. Right. The Brazilian hookers are thinking about your frankendick aaaall day for months. They just can’t have enough of ya li’l Asian dick. But well what can you expect. These people were doing head hunting there until yesterday. What’s the average IQ over there, 85? Stupid people do stupid things. They just can’t see the world as it is, objectively. Fortunately we Westerners discovered the scientific method, and know how to detach ourselves from a situation, and put objective facts before everything else.

On the Daily Telegraph:

Islam is way more English than the EDL

Pure objective facts. No emotional input whatsoever. It is obvious that a dispassionate analysis of the history and culture of England takes you to the conclusion that Islam is way more English than the English Defense League. Way more, mind you. And this guy’s the biographer of Pat Buchanan! Fuck, I just hate this stuff. How people can spit such amounts of bullcrap with a straight face. What happened with reason? Rationality! The unbiased examination of the world? Public discourse in the West is no better than filipino sailors tales about the sexual prowess of their super-enhanced penises. But wait, at least in the West some people do care about rationality and unbiased inquiry. Yes, smart people, few as they are, are getting together in the internet to support objective science and engage in high-level intellectual discourse. Yeah, there’s an official community even, right? Less Wrong they call it. Let’s take a look.

Arguments Against Speciesism

What?

Why species membership really is an absurd criterion

In the beginning of the article, I wrote that I’d get back to this for those not convinced. Some readers may still feel that there is something special about being a member of the human species. Some may be tempted to think about the concept of “species” as if it were a fundamental concept, a Platonic form.

The following likely isn’t news to most of the LW audience, but it is worth spelling it out anyway: There exists a continuum of “species” in thing-space as well as in the actual evolutionary timescale. The species boundaries seem obvious just because the intermediates kept evolving or went extinct. And even if that were not the case, we could imagine it. The theoretical possibility is enough to make the philosophical case, even though psychologically, actualities are more convincing.

We can imagine a continuous line-up of ancestors, always daughter and mother, from modern humans back to the common ancestor of humans and, say, cows, and then forward in time again to modern cows. How would we then divide this line up into distinct species? Morally significant lines would have to be drawn between mother and daughter, but that seems absurd!

Wait wait wait. This is the rationalist community? The objective, smart guys? Well at least this guy does sound smart. Too smart maybe. Yeah, he can’t be really saying what I think he is. It’s just me, I’m not smart enough to follow his writing style. At least I feel severe mental pain when trying to read the whole thing. Let’s see the summary to see his conclusions.

Summary

Our speciesism is an anthropocentric bias without any reasonable foundation. It would be completely arbitrary to give special consideration to a being simply because of its species membership. Doing so would lead to a number of implications that most people clearly reject. A strong case can be made that suffering is bad in virtue of being suffering, regardless of where it happens. If the suffering or deaths of nonhuman animals deserve no ethical consideration, then human beings with the same relevant properties (of which all plausible ones seem to come down to having similar levels of awareness) deserve no intrinsic ethical consideration either, barring speciesism.

Assuming that we would feel uncomfortable giving justifications or criteria for our scope of ethical concern that can analogously be used to defend racism or sexism, those not willing to bite the bullet about torturing babies are forced by considerations of consistency to care about animal suffering just as much as they care about human suffering.

Ok. Cool. Forget anything I said. There’s no hope. We’re doomed. I’ll see you in a brothel in Rio.

Advertisements

34 responses to “Reason

  1. Rasputin August 16, 2013 at 17:46

    “Ok. Cool. Forget anything I said. There’s no hope. We’re doomed. I’ll see you in a brothel in Rio.”

    With or without a penile implant?

  2. Bryce Laliberte August 16, 2013 at 20:12

    Really, a Sorites argument against species essentialism? That’s like the “Who made God?” objection. The Less Wrong crowd can be so plebe.

  3. Hagabis Garcia August 17, 2013 at 01:03

    It’s great. Maybe we should support anti-speciesism everywhere anti-racism is discussed. Watch the lefties squirm.

  4. theslittyeye August 17, 2013 at 01:30

    “Still, many Filipinos are hyper-aware of their own potential displacement. Other low-wage countries, including India, South Korea, and Indonesia, apply for the same jobs.”

  5. KK August 17, 2013 at 02:13

    Ehh, it’s unclear to me why anyone in these circles still considers LessWrong output relevant to anything (I know your tongue was firmly in cheek, but still). The sophistic faggotry is off the charts there.

    What Hanson and Yudkowski did in their time with Overcoming Bias was insightful and worthwhile, and I’d guess also an noteworthy part in the recent advances in human cognitive/behavioral sciences that you pointed out some time ago. However, they’ve since then descended into irrelevance and madness, respectively.

    You will not argue anyone over there out of their delusions (for reasons they themselves have outlined 7 years ago, fittingly enough) and the neoreactowhatever discourse is already jargon-filled, nerdy and insular enough.

    • spandrell August 17, 2013 at 04:37

      I think we’ve done a fair job of avoiding nerdy jargon in the reactosphere. Besides the squabbles over the ‘Cathedral’ et al.

      • asdf August 17, 2013 at 22:43

        “There exists a continuum of “species” in thing-space ”

        Can anyone read this and not want to call the author a faggot while punching him in the face?

      • Vladimir August 18, 2013 at 03:57

        That may have been true until relatively recently, but I don’ t think it’s true any more. The amount of repugnant self-satisfied and self-referential nerdiness among internet “reactionaries” has definitely reached an embarrassing enough level. (Those magical hero cards from a few months ago were for me a rude awakening when I finally realized this.)

        In fact, the “reactionary” blogosphere seems to be going through a process of decay quite similar to that which brought down Overcoming Bias and Less Wrong to their present sorry state. All the main elements are there in a very similar form. The old guard that started the whole thing has run out of interesting things to say, or generally lost interest in internet writing and debate. There is an influx of mediocrities (and worse) drowning the discourse in their pointless output. And finally, attempts at community building have kicked off an arms race in jostling for status, which is just about the most corrosive influence possible on any kind of intellectual discourse.

        I don’t think the day is far when your typical internet “reactionary” will be a spectacle as sorry as the typical Lesswrong “rationalist” nowadays. What we desperately need is some improvement on the present concept of open-access blogs and forums that would keep their advantages while somehow avoiding these forces of decay that they foster seemingly inevitably.

        • spandrell August 18, 2013 at 04:33

          I see what you’re saying. There’s still interesting stuff on Less Wrong though, even if drowning on mediocrity. And even if reaction is invaded by Tumblr nerds, and the old guard is busy with work or child rearing, I don’t it’ll die off. It’s not an ideal situation of course.

          Given your assessment of the situation and your strong feelings about it, you are precisely the right person to open a restricted access forum and see how it goes. You have my support and probably that of most of the people you read.

        • asdf August 18, 2013 at 14:31

          Ultimately the only check is reality check is real world consequences. And the only thing that keeps people from navel gazing is having concrete real world things to do.

          The most internet discussion can ever be is a little bit of a sanity check for people in absurd environments, but that is of limited value. Once you say what you have to say there is not much else to do. Lacking real world ways to pursue that which was said you either drop away, repeat, or try to complicate things because idle hands are the devil’s plaything.

          • spandrell August 18, 2013 at 14:41

            OK you’re not helping.

            • asdf August 18, 2013 at 21:49

              So wonderfully specific.

              • spandrell August 19, 2013 at 02:35

                This whole routine of “Writing is useless masturbation, you need to DO something dude” is getting tiring.

                You see, nothing you or anyone here does with his personal life is going to change a damn thing. You can embrace God, get a wife, have 15 children, and that isn’t going to change anything. The real world consequences of commoners leading their life are, in most cases, zero. The world goes on, the elite goes on, and in a short time you will have trannies checking out your little boys in the local park without you being able to do anything about it.

                I get it that Foseti and others shouldn’t be working for the enemy. But others just want a place to chat and get away from the madness, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

              • asdf August 19, 2013 at 04:06

                Vlad made the comment that internet communities descend into circle jerking and navel gazing. It seems obvious one of the reasons this happens. You’ve got a bunch of people basically saying stuff other smarter people figured out how to say a long time ago. What new data there is isn’t exactly hard to digest. There is no advancement in “reactionary science” or anything like that. After the initial rush of feeling like you aren’t insane you eventually reach one of three points:

                1) You drop out, because its just going in circles.

                2) You repeat over and over and everyone complains how its boring, almost inevitably going back to #1.

                3) You start delving into novel clever silly bullshit because its the only way to feel like your accomplishing something and keep you interested.

              • spandrell August 19, 2013 at 04:51

                Well having a place where people can go to test their sanity is still important. Of course there are diminishing returns to any undertaking, and the amount of insight an individual can provide has its limits.

                But just because there are physical rules that determine that people get bored after a while it doesn’t mean we should just close shop and go Amish. It’s like saying that we will die eventually so why not kill ourselves right now.

              • Greying Wanderer August 21, 2013 at 21:36

                meme warfare is fun

        • spandrell August 22, 2013 at 17:15

          You might as well answer your email.

  6. Callowman August 17, 2013 at 19:47

    The Filipinos are tiny, blocky little men. I have known quite a few of them. It would not be easy to be one outside the Philippines. The interpretation given of the cock inserts is pathetic, but it’s not hard to understand their anxiety.

  7. Zach August 17, 2013 at 20:00

    Wreck it. Leave it. Goodbye. The end. No penis mutilation necessary.

    “Public discourse in the West is no better than filipino sailors tales about the sexual prowess of their super-enhanced penises.”

    Agreed. But…?

    Public discourse? Or the super cool and now in style “Cathedral” talk? I like to have fun most of the time (I play dumb on purpose) but good god, the elitism and self importance, on some of these blogs (required?) regarding things that only require common sense is peculiar. And so am I.

    I guess what goes around, comes around.

    “Common sense, right?” Not that common, but I thought Viggo never reached this level again, in his career:

    Ah dayum!

    • Zach August 17, 2013 at 20:45

      The vagaries therein may seem puzzling. Good. Many Less Wrong manginas can probably give a million implications of that scene. Good. This fantasy of words is intriguing.

      “The Cathedral” priests… put a lens on their life. Most likely a bunch of bullshitting fuck know-nothings. You can’t even be successful in this world without being a compulsive liar or judge and juror of your own business (I get that part). What “they” say, what they do, and what they tell, are incompatible. Unless they line up (logically), they’re politicians. Admitting they don’t line up is not enough for me. (Moldbug fails the lens test, but he gets a pass because he is one cynical summabitch with a sense of humor) Thus my abject cynicism towards these morons pretending to have meaningful conversations is justified.

      How do you people even go to a University without vomiting? Seriously? You go through the motions to better your income? Are you whores? Yes. Of course you are. Have you admitted this? No.

      We’re apes. And people need activities. They need to use their minds and pretend to matter. Maybe intellectually stimulating. Maybe fun. Maybe X. Whatever… THEY MUST LINE UP, and if I don’t know you, then you’re then considered a fucking clown talking out of two sides of his or (gasp) her mouth.

      Jeah!

      As I said, I had a blog once… and every single thing said there was of the utmost truth, not only to me, but to who I am, and to who I seek to be. Not bragging, but it’s not wonder I have few friends… I don’t have time for bs.

      I like your pessimism. And I hope you don’t care that I do.

      Jeah!

        • Zach August 21, 2013 at 02:59

          It’s all good brah! *wink* They thought I was too insane to respond to, as did you. Maybe a good thing. Maybe a bad thing. Who cares?

          Have you seen the evidence (link) that purports – shows – that Baboons have wild Dogs as pets in Africa?

          Amazing stuff. Incredibly entertaining if not fascinating. As to its worth? Almost zero.

  8. B August 17, 2013 at 21:40

    They do the same exact thing in Russian prisons.
    Mudhoney had an album called My Brother the Cow. Perhaps after the upcoming tranny empowerment struggle’s successful completion (I am guessing 25 years until the first tranny president, if the whole thing doesn’t collapse first,) the next boot-on-face movement will be animal enfranchisement. If subliterates and retards have voting rights, why shouldn’t Rottweilers and Belgian Shepherds? Who are you to say a goat should be a second-class citizen? South Park already did it, though, in the Giant Douche vs. Turd Sandwich episode.

    • spandrell August 17, 2013 at 23:54

      Damn. I sometimes think that fag liberation might be a good thing, given the totally fucked up shit that goes on in male-only environments.

      As for the animals, well your tribesmate Peter Singer has been trying for decades, hasn’t he.

      • B August 18, 2013 at 09:12

        By the fact that he’s named “Peter,” you can tell he aspires to be YOUR tribesmate, and is not the first in his family to do so.

        Not sure how preferential treatment for gays will stop male ritual mutilation.

  9. Contemplationist August 20, 2013 at 04:08

    A hilariously depressing montage, monsieur. But if you permit, I’ll raise a bit of an objection to the LessWrong thingy. It is clearly cherry-picked for maximal laughter (as is your right!) and since it goes so well in this piece, I applaud! But nonetheless, unlike the Telegraph or Filipino sailors, the overwhelming majority of stuff on LessWrong is actually smart and sane.

Please comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s