12 November 2013

Jenny Strömstedt and gender-neutral toys

Some time ago, a certain Jenny Strömstedt, a journalist of sorts, working for one of the world's worst "newspapers" (called Expressen) wrote an article criticising the Telegraph (respectable British newspaper) for making fun of her because she supported the decision of the American company Toys-R-Us to produce a catalogue, for the Swedish market, with "gender-neutral" toys.

I looked at the Telegraph article and then looked at the Expressen article and immediately saw that the politically-correct, gender-neutral, and so on, Jenny Strömstedt's article was accompanied by an advertisement on breast enlargement for women. I immediately thought that I should write to her to tell her that this alone makes her article appear silly. A politically-correct, all-feminist, gender-neutral "journalist's" article next to a "breast augmentation" picture. I told her to change jobs. Of course, she didn't reply.

For the sake of book-keeping, here is my letter to Ms. Strömstedt:

from:     Takis Konstantopoulos
to:     redaktionen@expressen.se
date:     Sat, Dec 8, 2012 at 11:38 AM
subject:     A message for Jenny Strömsted
mailed-by:     gmail.com

Dear Ms Jenny Strömsted,

I read about your argument against the Telegraph writer Thomas Pascoe who criticized the Swedish toys catalogue for attempting to mingle the roles of boys and girls. I read about it here: http://www.thelocal.se/44824/20121203/#.UMKGmqyBorg

I am not going to comment on the topic which, of course, is weird, but on the fact that the appearance of your article in Expressen immediately weakens its weight. Indeed, Expressen is not a serious publication; it is a low-quality tabloid, a paper full of offensive advertisements, big sensationalist titles, full of disagreeable colour images, void of any content, a paper which my American friends would immediately classify as "trash". In comparison to the Telegraph (which itself is not the best newspaper in the UK), Expressen can only be used for cleaning windows by those who are interested in reading a newspaper (I am aware that there are many who, unfortunately, are amused by trash publications, and I feel sorry for their lack of intellect).

Thomas Pascoe wrote an article in a rather respectable newspaper. You wrote in a newspaper favoured by the poor in the spirit. I would be ashamed to have anything published by the Expressen. If you think your article has any merit please try to publish it in a serious forum. Not in Expressen!

Sincerely yours,
Takis Konstantopoulos

P.S. I am now looking at the URL of your Expressen article

and that of the Telegraph article.
The second contains a couple of small size discreet *still* advertisements. The Expressen URL contains dozens of *animated*  (hence annoying) advertisements including one on bröstforstöring (breast augmentation). This is not a good place for a feminist article. Unless breast augmentation is for men too. I doubt it though, because, below your article, there is, clearly a woman with rather large breasts who obviously wants to make them bigger. Now, this contradicts the spirit of your article doesn't it? Like I said, seek an alternative publication venue!
PPS. For your information, here is the advertisement below your article.
View   Share   Download  

6 November 2013

Pet care after the Rapture

Yesterday, I became aware of an organization called After the Rapture Pet Care. They state [underlining is mine]
As the Apostle Paul describes in Thessalonians [...], at some point in the future Jesus will come in the air, catch up the Church from the earth, and then return to heaven with the Church. This is known as the Rapture and it will be glorious. But what of our pets? Who will take care of our pets when we’re gone?
Carol began recruiting other non-Christian animal lovers nationwide to volunteer to take care of left-behind pets if the Rapture occurs.

I believe we’ve come up with a plan that is affordable, unique, Biblical and practical.

Our non-Christian administrators will activate our rescue plan.
I found it so hilarious, that I wrote a message for them on their site. It was immediately removed (this is called Free Speech as practiced by Christians). My message went like this:

This is funny from all points of view, and so typical of Christian Americans. As Christians (Christian fundamentalists, in fact), you believe that this Rapture will happen ... tomorrow. (It does not occur to you it may happen in 12 thousand years.) You also believe that you will go to heaven whereas the others, including your pets, will remain on the earth. (How stupid can that be?) As Americans, you believe that money will solve everything. (It doesn't occur to you that money may be worth nothing in 12 thousand years, not does it occur to you that, maybe, just maybe, the Rapture will destroy the monetary balance on the planet.) Oh, yes, you also believe that it is dollars that will be traded after the Rapture. But, as someone of your kin said, "blessed are the poor in spirit."

It takes a low intelligence person to believe in this literal intepretation of the Rapture. But it takes an abysmally low intelligence person to think that post-Rapture monetary system is inevitable. I don't know if these people think of god as the god of the bible or as this god.

P.S. They are not the only ones. Here are a couple of other post-rapture pet-care organizations:


What measure theory is about

It's about counting, but when things get too large.
Put otherwise, it's about addition of positive numbers, but when these numbers are far too many.

The principle of dynamic programming

max_{x,y} [f(x) + g(x,y)] = max_x [f(x) + max_y g(x,y)]

The bottom line

Nuestras horas son minutos cuando esperamos saber y siglos cuando sabemos lo que se puede aprender.
(Our hours are minutes when we wait to learn and centuries when we know what is to be learnt.) --António Machado

Αγεωμέτρητος μηδείς εισίτω.
(Those who do not know geometry may not enter.) --Plato

Sapere Aude! Habe Muth, dich deines eigenen Verstandes zu bedienen!
(Dare to know! Have courage to use your own reason!) --Kant