Posts by Bart Janssen

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  • Up Front: The Best Possible Taste, in reply to steven crawford,

    What kind of sexism are you seeing in science, and other than Paul Henry, who or what is driving it?

    Oh man, where to start. Essentially everything you can think of as sexist is true in science. I guess one difference is the victims are scientists and quite often collect good data.

    CVs get ranked by sex, male names on CVs get offered higher starting salaries.

    Sexual abuse and harassment.

    Women typically get more teaching and committee jobs which means less time to do research.

    Essentially you could write a book on it - oh wait Nicola Gaston has!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: The Best Possible Taste, in reply to Emma Hart,

    here’s Michelle Dickinson talking about how she felt about it, and why she does shows like Paul Henry:

    I realised, that only I can make the decisions on whose show I choose to go on and my reasons for doing that. Until we can get funding for a prime time dedicated science program accessible to all, scientists like me will keep having to throw in our 5 minutes wherever we can because we feel its important to talk about science. I know that my comments will mean that others will write negative things about me and my lack of self respect and lack of feminism values and that’s OK, because I’m doing the best that I can with zero budget and nothing but a passion for positive change to drive me.

    Which pretty much defines why she is a better person than I.

    She feels getting science out to the public is important enough to take that kind of crap. For me it's a marginal call, I can see her side of it but I also see the constant sexism in science and worry that allowing Henry a pass on this legitimizes the damaging sexism that goes on. But it's her call to make not mine.

    That TV3 were happy to allow it to remain without any apology says nothing new about TV3.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Up Front: The Best Possible Taste,

    It’s okay to ask a female scientist if she’s fucked Richard Branson.

    This made me so angry.

    Would he have asked Professor Sir Peter Gluckman if he'd fucked Richard Branson? It demonstrated a level of contempt he has for all women and this amazing woman in particular - all while smiling and pretending to treat her as a guest.
    ------
    Also I too inserted the word cunt into each of those gaps and I was annoyed at myself for doing so. There are better words.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Media Take: Te Mātāwai and…,

    I'm crap at languages, mostly because I can never gather the will to spend the necessary time, and partly some natural ineptitude, my high school French teacher will attest to that.

    So it was with some disappointment that I heard a Discovery podcast recently about bilingualism and it's positive impacts on resistance to dementia in later life as well as the benefits that are becoming clear in learning.

    I doubt I'll ever commit to spending the time needed to become fluent in any 2nd language unless I'm forced to by immersion - which turns out to be the best way to learn 2nd languages - they are now teaching kids 2nd languages by teaching other subjects (eg art) in the 2nd language rather than teaching the language the way I failed to learn French.

    But I am trying to pick up some of the pronunciation and some more words of New Zealand's first language. At some point I'd like to at least be able to say sorry and thank you and where's the loo.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Gabor Toth,

    as they will generally ignore any argument when basic terms are used incorrectly

    In the same way people will argue global warming is not real because on page 374 there was a typo.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to izogi,

    How does that work? Given the constitutional stuff, to what extent can a town or municipality in the USA get away with regulating guns?

    Same way any town regulates things like parking and traffic rules. 2nd amendment has failed to stop University campuses becoming gun-free as well. Supreme court has long established that 2nd amendment is nowhere near as strong as gun-nuts think it is. Essentially you are allowed to own a gun but towns/businesses/universities are also allowed to restrict guns within their domains as well.

    As weird as it sounds each town has “rights” to control activities like possession of weapons in public spaces that are equal to the “rights” of the individual to own a gun.

    Of course those “rights” can and do get tested in courts regularly which makes the lawyers rich. And of course the elected officials can change the rules as well.

    NB I am not a US constitutional lawyer but that my understanding

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Angela Hart,

    the US is the largest free range asylum in the world

    It's also worth remembering that the US is really really diverse. Sure the gun nuts make good TV - but there are thousands of towns with strong gun control regulations - they don't make the news because they are boring and moderate.

    There is a large number of people in the US for whom sensible gun licensing is just reasonable and they don't feel threatened by it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Matthew Hooton,

    downplaying the NRA’s influence is empty hypothesising

    Sadly you are almost certainly right. But still, leadership is essential. Obama repeating the same “isn’t this terrible” speech hasn’t been that.

    I think you're wrong on that.

    There is a section of the US population that will never be convinced that any kind of gun control is good but Obama has pretty carefully been avoiding engaging with them.

    Instead every speech has been targeted at the middle. Not ever suggesting preventing people owning guns but always defining guns in the same terms as driving a car. Effectively laying the groundwork for a set of laws that makes it safer to own a gun. He's done that knowing full well that he cannot make any of those laws in his term. And also knowing full well that because the US middle is weird by any normal standard that the process will be slow.

    But just like improving the safety of cars and just like regulating smoking he is setting the stage for a discussion of sensible controls.

    And part of that is highlighting each and every time guns are used inappropriately.

    Obama won't get credit for the eventual change in gun licensing and regulation but he is setting the stage for it to happen.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Alfie,

    US gun laws will probably come under scrutiny again, but sure as hell, the issue will be dropped soon after. Because… National Rifle Assn.

    While the NRA is disgusting the problem is not the NRA. The problem is that US politicians are corrupt and take money from the NRA to enact (or block) laws to the direct harm of the people they purport to represent.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Hate and guns, in reply to Alfie,

    If such a list even exists in the US.

    No such list exists.

    It is entirely possible to be on an FBI "no-fly" list because of perceived terrorist threat in the US and still be able to buy assault weapons.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4123 posts Report Reply

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