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Well, here's the thing, Alexander.  We've had quite a few of these discussions over the years and they always seem to end the same way, with no one understanding the 'other' point of view.  We've lost quite a few female participants over this, which I see to be a bad thing.  

So the purpose of this was not to discuss the burka ban, or even underwear, at all, but to address a meta issue as I said up top, and to perhaps shed some light on the question I quoted: "My question is what makes you[a female] better able to understand their situation than me[a male]?"

I chose to write in a "humorous" way on a fairly frivolous topic (underwear), to perhaps diffuse some already hurt feelings and maybe give some people a way to look at the discussion in a different way.  And of course, you're ALWAYS welcome to participate, no matter if you've been involved or not -- all input is welcome.

The only thing is... I wasn't discussing the burka ban here and don't really care to.  If you'd like to diary your opinions on banning, I'd be happy to participate if I have time.  

But in case you're curious and don't want to diary, I don't believe in clothing bans for many reasons, but mostly because I see it as attacking a symptom and causing more trouble and hurt to the most powerless among us without solving anything, fwiw.  I understand that good people with fine intentions disagree with me.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 3rd, 2010 at 02:57:59 PM EST
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I would not be able to make any sense of what you just said if it were not for the last paragraph. There you say that we should tolerate the barbaric practice of making women wear burkas because to raise objections about that practice would be to cause "hurt to the most powerless among us".

How is that different from saying that we must empathize with and "support" the prisoners in the Nazi concentration camps who, on behalf of the relevant authorities, "dealt with" the prisoners who were weaker than they themselves were? Don't you believe that there are higher human standards that we can employ than those of a concentration camp? Evidently you do not, judging by your signature. In your own perverse way, you are trying to make Hobbes' dream come true.

For what it's worth, my late wife did not find it "frivolous" to be able to go to work some days without wearing a bra, after she got tenure. As far as I could understand from my limited "male" point of view, her new job security which allowed her to do so enhanced what liberals (of whom you seem to be an instance) call her "quality of life".

As far as I understand, this is a political blog, not a "raising of your consciousness" blog, or a "how to improve your relationship with your significant other" blog. You raised a problem: women are more constrained in how they dress than men are. What has the very likely true fact that men don't understand women and their problems to do with anything, when it comes to politics? Women are the majority of the electorate. Thus, as a real problem for which one seeks a solution, this is not the problem of the eternal failure of men to understand women, but of getting laws passed to make women more equal to men. If women are unhappy about reigning social mores requiring the natural form of their breasts to be obscured by clothing, what man who claims to be a healthy heterosexual could possibly object, if women turned this into a political issue?

You concluded your diary thus, speaking of bras:

I'd love to be free of them -- they're uncomfortable as hell and burning them clearly didn't work.

Yes, burning them didn't work, but why not try getting a law passed?

In your latest comment, you claim that you were being "humorous" in your diary with regard to the predicament about dressing that women face in their daily lives. But my impression is that you were raising a real problem, and now are trying to dismiss it, to conform to the normal practice with the left these days, to make noise while abandoning politics.

A bomb, H bomb, Minuteman / The names get more attractive / The decisions are made by NATO / The press call it British opinion -- The Three Johns

by Alexander on Wed Feb 3rd, 2010 at 07:53:53 PM EST
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As far as I understand, this is a political blog, not a "raising of your consciousness" blog, or a "how to improve your relationship with your significant other" blog.

So you don't believe communication has anything to do with politics?  or is it communicating with women in particular you believe should be confined to consciousness-raising and relationships?

I've had respectful conversations with many of the men in this thread, pointing out that they were missing the point, and they've respectfully accepted that.

You, on the other hand, are not communicating with me.  You've dismissed most of what I've written as not making sense to you.  You haven't accepted my explanations.  

You seem to be insisting I should debate what you want me to debate, and not the subject I'm addressing.  When this is pointed out, you criticize my topic, the way I wrote about it, and the examples I used to illustrate it.

Further, you've all but said the topic has no place on this blog for which, if you'll glance to that little box on the right side of your screen, you may have noted that I'm a writer.

You refuse to acknowledge any nuance, framing things in black and white and, astonishingly, manage to violate godwin's law (never thought THAT would come up in this one...), jump to conclusions, tell me what I believe, make assumptions about me and my views, label me in a derogatory fashion, and dismiss me as merely making noise.  

You've talked past and ignored damned near everything I've said, then accuse ME of using language not to communicate, implying bad motives since I'm doing it in a "perverse" way (albeit "my own," so thanks for the token nod to my style).  Do you mind if next time this topic of communication comes up, I use your comments as Exhibit A?

Oh, and any time you'd like to have a civil discussion about the topic at hand, I'm right here.  I really would like to hear your answer to my first question in this comment.

Maybe we can eventually make language a complete impediment to understanding. -Hobbes

by Izzy (izzy at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 4th, 2010 at 01:10:24 AM EST
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As far as I understand, this is a political blog, not a "raising of your consciousness" blog, or a "how to improve your relationship with your significant other" blog.

And here I thought it was a debate club...

En un viejo país ineficiente, algo así como España entre dos guerras civiles, poseer una casa y poca hacienda y memoria ninguna. -- Gil de Biedma

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 4th, 2010 at 02:27:58 AM EST
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my late wife did not find it "frivolous" to be able to go to work some days without wearing a bra, after she got tenure.

So you're saying a female academic needs to wait until she has tenure to go braless without fear of career suicide?

Is going braless to work just below having sex with a student in the severity ranking of faculty offences?

En un viejo país ineficiente, algo así como España entre dos guerras civiles, poseer una casa y poca hacienda y memoria ninguna. -- Gil de Biedma

by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Thu Feb 4th, 2010 at 04:25:02 AM EST
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Are you sure that academics have those two offences that way round in order of severity?

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Thu Feb 4th, 2010 at 09:30:09 AM EST
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As far as I understand, this is a political blog, not a "raising of your consciousness" blog, or a "how to improve your relationship with your significant other" blog.

Huh. No, this is a "debate any subject you like" blog. You may have noticed that beyond politics, there are diaries about photography, economics, personal experiences, climate and the weather, transport, culture; and just about anything in open threads. At any rate, you'll find Izzy listed as one of the frontpagers, so you really should have thought twice before lecturing her about what the blog is about and what she can write about...

As for your argument in general, I am reminded of the two articles linked here.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Thu Feb 4th, 2010 at 05:37:40 AM EST
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Alexander:
As far as I understand, this is a political blog, not a "raising of your consciousness" blog, or a "how to improve your relationship with your significant other" blog.

um, not exactly. if you stick around, you'll stretch the distance of your understanding. politics affects everything else, so is always present, but ET's power comes from the intersection of the political with the personal, mostly through discussions about energy and economics, shot through with all sorts of other things, and mostly how they all interconnect.

some of us believe it does have a 'consciouness-raising' effect to learn more in an amiable atmosphere, and as for significant other stuff, well it's not much for that, though a good diary on the subject may break the record for number of comments, seeing how universal the subject is!

there are much more focussed political (and relationship=orientated) blogs around, but ET has something else going for it (la grande melange?) that makes it unique. i hope you get it, and just skip the diaries that don't serve your needs. you certainly have a lot of interesting knowledge to share.

pure politics as an abstract doesn't really exist, insofar as it's the effect on us is where the rubber meets the road...

so we hash it out.

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Thu Feb 4th, 2010 at 07:20:24 AM EST
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