Archive for December, 2012

Gun Nuts Hate Freedom

28/12/2012

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All the “cold dead fingers” small-dick gun nuts are up in arms because the Kendonesian is going to take their guns away. Of course, ignoring that part about the “well regulated militia” stuff, they claim that any laws controlling their penis enhancers infringes on their FREEDOM. Always in all caps. Yes, wackjob redneck dickheads are SOOOO into FREEDOM. Well, as long as it is the freedom for white men to run around with guns and shoot people for arguing with them about gun control, or for fucking their wives and girlfriends, or being brown. But, how general is their embrace of the ideal of freedom? A quick look at the 2010 GSS reveals that far from being the freedom loving Americans they claim to be, the majority of gun owners (about 55%) oppose allowing other Americans the freedom to marry—in contrast, only 32% of the 69% of Americans who do not own guns wished to limit their fellow Americans’ freedom to marry. Remember, most Americans do not own guns. Gun owners are a deviant minority. Most Americans also support gun control, but we do know that there is a highly vocal segment of the gun owning population who adamantly reject the imposition of registration laws on their detachable penises. Thankfully, only 12% of Americans are certified gun nuts, owning guns and opposing laws—but this nutty bunch is dead set against freedom to marry—57% report opposition to marriage rights, while only 30% of Americans who do not own guns and who support gun laws oppose marital freedom.

Why does the NRA hate freedom?

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Zappadan Ends in Sorrow, Grief, Lunacy, and Hope….

22/12/2012

You know that you are what you is and that isn’t much unless what you have is to take from what you got from the others who you didn’t really mention were your subjects of all manner of ill intention to whom you believe you owe nothing because you think you may be the central scrutinizer or some other sort of terpsichorean ejectamenti to be plastigated on the people who know little and the less they know the better they feel about the slime festering from the ooze of the blister that reeks of the stench of a thousand assholes as the weasels rip the flesh from the bones of the last of the dying lawn jockeys knocked from the lawns of the guys with the brown suits and the blonde wives who take phone calls and who don’t even think you’re number 2………

Zappadan will be even better next year.

Why Gun Control Will Win

16/12/2012

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It’s disturbing to see many liberals and virtually all moderates and conservatives buy into the NRA/Gallup/whore pollster myth that Americans oppose gun control. The unwavering assumption is that Americans love guns, and we all have guns under our beds and in our pickups and in the desk drawer at work and another in the kitchen, just in case you have to shoot your spouse. Democrats are afraid to even say “gun control” thinking that somehow “everyone” thinks that every nutcase should have the right to carry a high powered handgun next to their little tiny prick. Reality is a long way from the talking points generated by the NRA and inserted into the Republican Party platform. Indeed—even gun owning Republicans want a systematic tracking of firearms. It is true that those who are clinging to their guns and their gods were more likely to vote for Sarah Palin and that old guy—more than half of McCain voters own guns, while only a quarter of Obama voters are packing heat. And, it is true that more Democratic voters support gun control—82% of Obama voters support gun control measures. But, look at the Republicans. 64% of people who admit to going out and voting for Sarah Palin want gun control. Indeed, even the shrinking minority of Americans who own guns support gun control–66% of gun owning Obama voters support gun control, while 59% of gun owning McCain voters support gun control.

It is just plain strange to see gun control touted as a non-starter for political mobilization, particularly when contrasted with something much more controversial like same sex marriage. We’ve barely reached the point when the majority of Americans think same sex marriage should be legal, and the pundits and “journalists” tout it as inevitable. In contrast, the vast majority of Americans have always supported gun control, but somehow we’re too afraid of the small dick pussy ass NRA to make that happen? Bullshit. Americans are just as sick of these little fascist assholes and their penis extenders which they use to threaten, maim, and kill other Americans. Only 30% of American households own guns, and most of those guns are old shotguns or squirrel rifles—not 40 caliber handguns with 24 shot magazines or assault rifles.

There are several concrete steps which would easily fly with all real Americans. First, an immediate repeal of all “carry and shoot” laws which enable belligerent redneck pussies to walk around armed and shoot people when they are scared. Second, the federalization of all arms, ammunition, and equipment sales and the issuance of a national license and registration database. This will close all gun shops, take Wal Mart out of the gun business, and end the “gun shows” that are nothing more than a bunch of white supremacists stockpiling weapons to kill the browns.  Third, this license should be linked to police and medical databases—enabling law enforcement and medical professionals to coordinate. You have a diagnosis of a psychotic disorder? You can’t buy 500 rounds at the Federal gun store. Indeed, nobody can buy more than a box at the federal gun store. And, of course, we need an immediate ban on all semi-automatic weapons other than three-shot shotguns, deer rifles, and the magazine limit for semi-auto pistols should be 6 shots. It is illegal to hunt with more than three shots, so why is this shit for sale? Licenses should be mandatory with each gun registered and registration permits should be annual and expensive ($100 should do it, eh?). And, if you don’t want to license your gun, there should be a buy-back and destroy option. You don’t want that old 38 that grandpa left you? Can’t afford the $100 to register this year? Fine, the Feds should buy back your gun at a fair market value—and destroy it. A buyback program would probably bring down gun ownership to under 10% of households. Most people who own guns aren’t gun nuts.

Real Americans want to see Ted Nugent in prison for threatening the President and other public officials. We want to see his guns confiscated and destroyed. We want him to be banned from ever again owning a gun because he’s a dangerous felon. Scared pussies like him are the people who shoot up malls and hospitals and elementary schools.

Why Female-headed households decrease violent crime

13/12/2012

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Figure Stolen from Philip:

Conservative pseudointellectuals have been all aflutter about Philip Cohen‘s magisterial takedown of the conservative bullshit argument claiming that female headed households lead to crime. All the  conservatives have left to fall back on is the completely ludicrous argument that the Prison Industrial complex has locked up all of the bad guys, forever, and that is why crime is down. Of course, such crap arguments ignore a huge body of literature showing that incarceration rates are linked to higher rates of crime because of the social disorganization created by having large proportions of people in prison. And, of course, a substantial fraction of the prison population are non-violent drug offenders, not violent criminals.

What Philip misses, and of course the right wing bullshitters could never comprehend, is that something did go on in policing and public policy which reduced the violent crime rate—-and increased the proportion of women heading families—systematic public policy about domestic violence and abuse. What happened in the last three decades? Well, some really smart police chiefs began to realize that the vast majority of murders and a substantial plurality of all violent crime stem from domestic violence. And, domestic violence is almost impossible to deal with if vulnerable family members (women and children, almost always, but also elders) have no where else to go. So, what have we seen? A dramatic proliferation of domestic violence shelters and services, focusing on women and families, but also now increasingly on abused elders. If a woman wants out, she can get help. It isn’t easy. It isn’t perfect. But it’s MUCH better than it was 30-40 years ago when there were no services or legal protections. Indeed, where do we see Philip’s graph on violence turning South? 1994, the first year that the Violence Against Women Act was passed.

Legal protections and policing also played a prominent role. During this same time, spurred by Federal mandates, states and municipalities began to actively engage domestic abuse. Abusers could no longer count on Sheriff Bubba to look the other way, or bring his beaten wife and kids back to the trailer. Family and friends who might have contemplated taking the law into their own hands  to confront abusers (compounding the number of crimes through tit-for-tat violence) now found help in the criminal justice system. Many states enacted mandatory “cooling out” jail time for domestic violence offenders. The effect was profound and immediate. Murder rates and violent crimes plummeted.

Now, women in abusive relationships don’t have to stay with their abuser, and that is what CAUSED the violent crime rate to fall. Breaking the cycle of abusive patriarchy reduces violence.  No abusive relationship, no eventual murder or beating. No abusive husband or boyfriend around? I guess that big shootout at the family thanksgiving won’t happen, will it?  And, if we see his truck pull around the corner, we’re calling the cops, and they’re going to come and take it seriously—it’s their statistics they are worried about, as much as anything. It also doesn’t hurt that gun ownership is also at a historic low, and that younger cohorts are especially less likely to own guns.

Most violent crime has origins in families, and the way to reduce violent crime is to enable people to dislodge violent abusers from their families. And that leaves a nice little peaceful female-headed home. The End. Happy Zappadan!

Winning the War Against Zappadan

09/12/2012


Blckdgrd and The Zen Comic has alerted the tribe about the ongoing war against Zappadan. There is only one solution to war, and that is peace. And peace can come only through sappy ballads. Unfortunately, Maestro only left us with sappy ballads without lyrics and maybe Bobby Brown, which is probably a good thing.

The Commodification of Public Opinion, Nefarious Political Interests, and Estimates of Gun Ownership

06/12/2012

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The latest Gallup-NRA whore poll is once again touting the meme that Americans don’t want gun control, and that we are all rushing out to buy guns before the Godless Communist Kendonesian Homosexual Usurper sends the blue hatted UN troops to take us away to the FEMA reeducation camps. They bolster this claim with the very real increase in sales of guns and ammunition that has been constant since a black guy got elected President by the vast majority of American voters. But, as I said before in my post on attitudes toward gun control, these fake trends are very strong evidence that the decline in quality of survey research from for-profit pollsters like Gallup are leading to erroneous inferences.  And, Gallup (perhaps because they are under contract with NRA?) has been pushing a line which says “Americans don’t want gun control.” Something which is completely false. A HUGE majority of Americans want gun control—but only a minority of the respondents to a poll tapping the opinion of 7% of the targeted respondents who answered a landline call and were at home on a Tuesday night in October, clinging to their guns and praying to their gods.

Now, Gallup-NRA want to claim that more Americans own guns. Yes, we’ve been rushing out to the local AK-47 shop with the Confederate Flags out front ever since November of 2008. Gun industry analysts know that part is true. However, the right-wing gun nuts who have been mortgaging their farms to buy more guns and ammo ALREADY OWNED GUNS. People who don’t own guns voted for Obama, and they want Obama to take the guns away from the nutjob at the end of the street who lets his pit bulls run wild and frequently pops off a shot or two when he’s drunk.

Reality is the opposite of what the Gallup poll shows—shit polls should not be given any credence. Let’s move to the General Social Survey’s estimates of gun ownership for a comparison, and a little inquiry regarding statistical estimates and whether or not they can be concluded to having been drawn from the same population (ie. are “real Americans” the 7% (or less) who answer shit polls?).

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The GSS has been asking a very similar question about gun ownership to the one used in the NRA poll since 1973. Notably, in `1991 the Gallup poll already tracked over 10% higher in its estimates of gun ownership than the GSS. And, while the GSS shows a fairly linear decline in gun ownership across the four decades of high quality data collection, the best description of the “trend” in the NRA-Gallup poll is random fluctuation. At the end, Gallup is saying that nearly half (47%) of Americans own guns, while GSS puts the population parameter at about 30%. Indeed, Gallup-NRA claim that  6% of Americans rushed out to become first-time gun owners between 2011 and 2012. 6%. First time gun owners. That’s fucking bullshit. Most people who own guns have owned guns all of their lives. I got my first gun when I was 8, a single shot 16 gauge shotgun—kicked like a mule. Like many Americans, who aren’t raving right wing pussies who are scared, I didn’t like the risk of having a gun in the house when I had young children, and I don’t hunt anymore (it’s boring),  so about 20 years ago my three guns moved to the Iranian Redneck Ranch in Weleetka, Oklahoma—and if a researcher asked me if I owned a gun, I’d say “no.”

So, I wonder, are all the Nate Silver fans who love shit polls going to say that I should take seriously the Gallup estimates? Are they just as good at estimating the proportion of Americans who own guns as the GSS estimates—which differ by over 10% (probably more when we can compare 2012 with the NRA poll)? Of course, Silver has been having a pissing match with For Sale Frank Newport about Gallup’s Presidential estimates, so maybe the crapigators will simply dismiss this. Oh, right, of course. And the polls with NO standards are even better than Gallup? Sure.

We all know this is really about people wanting to justify their wet dream data collection project which they can pull off for $100k if they could sell shit data to people who review for ASR. Crap is Crap, and this crap is for sale to manipulate public opinion and squelch the gun control movement. In reality, fewer and fewer Americans own guns, the proportion of Americans who hunt is in rapid decline, there have been 60 mass gun slayings since the assassination attempt on Gabriele Giffords in 2011, and most REAL AMERICANS want gun control. Now.

Social Science Research, Research Ethics, and the Same Sex Marriage Debate

05/12/2012

Last summer my old friend from ultimate frisbee and Professor of Philosophy at Cal State Fresno, Andy Fiala, wanted me to come out and talk about something related to my research. He has a lecture series on ethical issues as part of his very cool center, and a lot of friendly people from the University and the community come out for the lectures. Of course, right as we were talking about this the Chronicle article on the Regnerus affair came out, and he thought it would be a nice opportunity to meld together my research on support and opposition to marital rights with the unfolding drama. It was a really nice event, and it was great to see the crowd and to catch up with Andy, Val, Tahoe, and Bodhi. None of us could remember if I had ever actually met Bodhi before, and Val couldn’t find pictorial evidence…..

A few people have asked about the talk, ssmethics, the PPT is on the link.  And, behold, Andy’s minions have it up on youtube in four pieces. I’m sorry they didn’t get the Q and A, but it went just a tad longish…..

Zappadan 2012: The Torture Never Stops…No, really, The Torture Never Stops! No, Really…..

04/12/2012

We begin this high holy festival of Zappadan as the United States once again affirms official support for eternal torture and indefinite detention, and opposition to the rights of oppressed brown people to determine their own future. Because, well, I guess, I mean, you can’t deny it, it is going on right now, and we can see that it is evident, and nothing to the contrary seems to be brought to bear, and the contrasting reality simply is not, which cannot be a reality, and instead we must simply conclude that the torture never stops, and we can do nothing about it, and they will do nothing about it, and we don’t even know who we are or who they are, but we know that they are and that we are, and it will be the torture of all that it never stops and cannot be fathomed that things would ever be otherwise because this is simply the way things are and the way things have always been and we have to accept that the way things are is the way they always shall be and that because of that the torture will never stop…..

Zappadan Eve with Captain Beefheart….

04/12/2012

Good to start this year’s Zappadan festivities with Captain Beefheart. He can go wake up Frank.

Hipster Hicks and the Politics of Cultural Appropriation

02/12/2012

In the last few years the pursuit of irony by young rich kids has led them to guzzle Pabst Blue Ribbon beer and listen to bluegrass. It’s exceptionally annoying for someone like me who actually grew up in the South and understands the culture and where it came from and what it really means. But, for the hipsters, nothing means anything except whatever their group constructs it to mean. So, bluegrass is hip! No, it’s not. It’s music to fuck your sister by. It’s what’s playing when some guy is fucking a goat. It’s the soundtrack to a thousand lynchings, beatings, and burnings. The people who don’t understand that simply weren’t there. They don’t get it because they’ve never been shot at by a redneck, or been in a fight with bottles and baseball bats. They’ve never seen kids showing up for junior high football games with KKK scrawled on their football helmets. It’s emblematic of the myopic cluelessness of a generation who know nothing of our very recent racial and ethnic history. And, it is an interesting exercise in the naivete of constructionist approaches to culture—ignoring the history and weight of culture and simply navel gazing about what some kid thinks things mean.

It all started with the Grateful Dead, a band I always hated, because it was a bluegrass band….a bunch of rich kids from Northern California who liked to pluck around on strings. It took quite a while for a bunch of lazy white kids to figure out that the Dead were actually a bluegrass band, probably because they were tightening their headbands for an extra rush during Jerry’s guitar solo. Three decades later we have hipsters going to festivals worshiping Klan member bluegrass icons–and ignoring their politics and acting like it didn’t matter. Kind of funny that the inauthentic don’t grasp that what makes the old timey types authentic is that they are hard core hillbilly racists. I had a long argument with a hipster ethnomusicologist who has a popular hipster bluegrass band about this. And, it was instructive that he evoked the silly constructionist debunking approach—black people once played similar music (supposedly, he found a recording! It’s in the Smithsonian!) therefore the entire genre is actually just the music of all of the people. No, dumbshit, it’s not. Don’t believe me, take a black friend to a REAL bluegrass bar. Culture is produced to create boundaries across groups, and to evoke and enforce the superiority of one group’s style of life and preferences. And country and bluegrass music were produced to oppose the egalitarian values of the rest of the nation, and to enforce a system of white racial domination. When a black guy walks into a bar or a Rural King and country and bluegrass are playing, he knows where he stands. Shit, even PBR is a symbol of that system of racial oppression! The logo is deliberately evocative of the Confederate flag, and was changed to make it more so!

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The 1993 GSS had a module on musical preferences, and you can see quite  clearly the link between musical preferences and vehement racism by looking at support for laws against racial intermarriage. Even in 1993, more than one in five bluegrass and country fans thought there should be laws against racial intermarriage—basically double the rate of virulent racism among people who don’t like those genres of music.  To ignore the history of a cultural product is to mistake distant cultural meanings (like how Buddhists  see the swastika!) with the meaning that is actually intended within the culture. That’s what authenticity is. It’s not ironic. It’s racist.