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I call bullshit

In honour of International Women’s Day, let me show you a little something that happened on Twitter.

twitter08032016_b@DrAshleyCook asked @NextOfficial: “why is this only for boys? And also, where’s   ?! ” (link to tweet)

Next, in their wisdom, answered over two tweets (tweet 1, tweet 2): “Hi there are many members of the Justice League not included on this tee…” “These 4 went best with the space we had . Sorry if this has caused you any offence.”

Note the fake apology.

twitter08032016Which is wrong on so many levels. 1. It doesn’t answer the first question: Why is this only for boys? 2. So the four who went best with the space just happened to be male? 3. Actually, all design wisdom suggests that any group should consist of an odd number of things to be most pleasing to the eye.

So I call bullshit.

Om løsøre og andre snurrepiperier

Norge er en merkelig ting.

 

Eller kanskje mer spesifikt: Den norske kirka er en merkelig ting.

 

Jeg har blitt ateist på mine gamle dager. Til og med en sånn rabiat ateist som mener at all religion er av det onde, om jeg skal være helt ærlig. Så jeg kom meg til slutt så langt som til å sende utmelding til Den norske kirke. Jeg er ikke den første til å stille spørsmålstegn med hvordan dette å melde seg ut av kirka er organisert, så det er mulig du allerede er klar over prosedyren, men man sender altså et skjema til sin lokale menighet. Kirkens egen tekst om dette er noe knapp, men de har kopi av lovteksten der det står “Henvendelse om inn- eller utmelding bør besvares innen 14 dager i form av attest som viser at inn- eller utmeldingen er registrert.” Men jeg har aldri fått noe svar, ei heller etter å ha purret til min lokale menighet via deres kontaktskjema på kirken.no.

 

Jeg er forresten fascinert av denne delen av lovteksten: “Dersom den som melder seg ut, ikke er registrert i Den norske kirkes medlemsregister, må vedkommende dokumentere medlemskapet med dåps- eller innmeldingsattest.” Altså: Om du ikke står i registeret kan det vel kanskje være det samme med den utmeldingen?

 

I forbindelse med diskusjonene på Twitter om vår nye Barne- og ettellerannetminister (det er vel fortsatt ikke klart hva departementet skal hete?) Sylvia Horne (mer om det senere, muligens, men jeg er ikke sikker på at jeg klarer å skrive rasjonelt om damemennesket) stilte Jens Brun-Pedersen et betimelig (synes jeg) spørsmål “Undrer meg ikke om de som provoseres av enkelte FrPeres homofobe holdninger fremdeles er medlem av en kirke som diskriminerer homofile.”

 

Det ga i alle fall meg et spark bak med hensyn til å følge opp forsøket på utmelding. Så jeg forsøker å finne rett instans å snakke med hos kirka. Henvendelser på epost besvares med brev, henvendelser per telefon henvises til de lokale menighetene, står det. Vel, jeg er lei av å henvende meg til min lokale menighet og akkurat nå passer det dårlig å sende epost siden jeg er på jobb og det er nå jeg husker at jeg skulle ha sjekket. Så jeg tester det tredje alternativet, nemlig henvendelse til Brønnøysundregisteret, der man kan få opplyst hva som er registrert om en selv.

 

Jeg ringer 75 00 75 00, forklarer hva jeg vil og blir satt over til rett instans. En automatisk svarer forteller meg at jeg er kommet til Løsøreregisterets avdeling for livssyn og trossamfunn. Da hadde jeg problemer med å holde meg alvorlig nok til å få framsatt ærendet mitt når en levende person plukket opp samtalen øyeblikket etterpå. “Løsøreregisteret”? I følge bokmålsordboka på nett er løsøre “rørlig gods, ting som kan flyttes, t forskj fra fast eiendom”. Jeg har hørt at tro kan flytte fjell (som vel ikke regnes som løsøre), men visste ikke at tro kunne flyttes rundt tilsvarende. Nuvel.

 

Jeg oppgir fødselsnummer og får beskjed om at opplysningene sendes til folkeregistrert adresse.

 

Ja, for det er en annen merkelig sak med Norge: Du kan gjøre mye rart i andres navn om du har fødselsnummeret deres, opprette firma, melde flytting, søke om kredittkort osv. Derfor skal man holde fødselsnummeret sitt hemmelig (at det står på bankkortet og dermed er lett tilgjengelig for alle som krever å få se legitimasjon er en annen diskusjon). Men å få opplyst over telefon hvorvidt jeg er oppført som medlem i DNK eller ikke, det er tydeligvis for sensitiv informasjon. Vel.

 

Nå venter jeg spent på brev i posten.

Those pesky politics

Every time elections roll round again I struggle to decide whom to vote for. I’ve been a member of a couple of different parties, but never wholeheartedly, and never for more than a couple of years at most. One party has never, ever been under consideration, though. FrP is never getting my vote, even by proxy, which means any party that seriously considers long-term cooperation with FrP is also out of the question (what with having a multi-party system we usually have coalition governments nowadays). I normally land squarely to the left of center whatever I decide, though, so mostly just that issue hasn’t been a problem for me, however some of my friends are facing just that problem at the moment as it is rumored that Venstre might just possibly decide to, well, consider being in a coalition with FrP. Kristine at Haustljos is facing precisely that, and in that context decided to go looking for an answer to “What now?”. The particular test she found was a US based one (as far as we can gather) which yields some interesting results, though perhaps not very helpful ones in a Norwegian context. As Kristine says:

Testen eg tok var i overkant amerikansk, og skulle kartlegge kor rasistisk, homofob, kulturelt amøbe og gunhappy eg var.

Det viste seg at eg var hakket kvassare enn Gandhi.

Well, I was curious, so I took it too. I’m even worse:

This is me, apparently.

This is me, apparently.

Uhm. A little to the left and a little libertarian. Just a wee bit. So, if we’re “sharper than Gandhi”, where’s Gandhi?

The Political Compass' take on some historical figures.

The Political Compass' take on some historical figures.

Wheee. This is fun. So, since the election everyone’s talking about at the moment is the US primaries, let’s see who I should aim to vote for, were I a US citizen:

crowdgraphpng

Uh. Houston, we have a problem.

Or perhaps I should say Washington. Anyway, I guess it’s just as well I don’t have to decide which of the US candidates to vote for.

And, oh, those of you that claim Obama is a socialist? I think I can say with some authority: He ain’t. Mind you, according to this it seems Stalin wasn’t either. I mean, I’m in favour of the state having some control, and of essential public services being state owned rather than privatised, but I’m not against free trade as such. Well, ok, perhaps I am, since I’m in favour of regulating free trade, so let’s call it “freeish trade” shall we? Anyway, I’m not against private initiative, which I sort of thought the Soviets were. I may have misunderstood something here.

The overview of EU governments in 2008 is illuminating, too:

The world is mad.

The world is mad.

Norway, I suspect, world be just to the left of that middle axis, we’re pretty similar to Sweden, but the poor Swedes have had a right-wing government for a few years now. Not that the difference seems particularly glaring (nowhere near as glaring as it ought by rights to be), so not much further to the left. Nowhere near enough to make me happy.

___________

Edit:

The FAQ is interesting, and contains a point worth quoting under the heading “You can’t be libertarian and left wing”:

The assumption that economic deregulation inevitably delivers more social freedom is flawed. The welfare states of, for example, the Nordic region, abolished capital punishment decades ago and are at the forefront of progressive legislation for women, gays and ethnic minorities – not to mention anti-censorship. Such established high-tax social democracies consistently score highest in the widely respected Freedom House annual survey on democratic rank eg Denmark ranks 2, Sweden 3 and Norway 7, while comparatively free markets such as the US, Singapore and China rate 15,74 and 121 respectively (this detailed checklist can be viewed at http://www.worldaudit.org/civillibs.htm).

Words are just words

I spent yesterday evening obsessively reading my Twitter stream, checking facebook, nrk.no and aftenposten.no occasionally to see if I’d missed anything (I hadn’t. Twitter was by far the most up to date source of news yesterday). I passed a milestone by turning on the news despite the lass being awake, in the room and not too preoccupied to watch with me. Mercifully she’s too young to really get it, she was most interested in the ambulances, focused on how they were helping people, not registering the talk of those who were beyond help.

When I went to bed the casualty list was at 7 in Oslo, 9 or 10 at Utøya. I suspected the numbers for Utøya would rise, from what I’d read on Twitter the situation was bound to be chaotic, but I fervently hoped not, thinking “How many people can a lone gunman hit?”

I woke up to official numbers of “at least 80” killed at Utøya. The answer to my question, therefore, was obviously: “Way, way too many.”

As far as I know, I don’t know any of the victims (whether dead, injured or “just” traumatised) directly. But ours is such a small country, the degree of separation is bound to be tiny. I’ll know someone who knows someone. I’ll know someone who lost a child, a friend, a relative.

It’s a horrible, terrible, no-good day.

Still, I’m grateful.

First of all I’m grateful that my nearest and dearest are safe and sound, of course.

And I’m grateful that the Norwegian police seemed to handle everything pretty much perfectly. Their responses to the press have been exemplary (not so all the questions from said press). They obviously had plans to handle a much worse situation (I know it might be diffucult to imagine the situation being worse just now), getting people out of all suspected targets, telling people to remain calm, but to get out of the centre of Oslo and to avoid big gatherings. If there had been a series of bombs rather than just the one, their response would have been the only correct way of handling it. This is reassuring. We can’t avoid madmen completely, at least not without becoming the sort of society it wouldn’t be worth living in, but we can minimise their impact.

I’m also, though it might sound strange, grateful that the perpetrator seems to have been a right-wing fundamentalist rather than a muslim fundamentalist. It makes the horror that was yesterday no less terrifying, but it may make the reactions to come less horrible. Yesterday there were already plenty of reports of “muslim-looking” people in Oslo being hassled, or even physically attacked. It is to be hoped that that idiocy is curtailed now.

And I am profoundly grateful that the reaction from the Prime Minister, and from everyone else who really matters, has been – throughout, also when the perpetrator(s) were unknown – to keep calm, to stand together and most of all to not let fear rule our actions. Democracy – the principle that everyone is entitled to an opinion and is to be allowed to state that opinion – is one of the things that make our society great. Though, as it turns out, this is not “our 9/11”, it’s more like “our Oklahoma”, still the contrast in the reactions from our leaders expressed on Twitter and Facebook this morning is not without significance:

G.W. Bush, 9/11: “We’re gonna hunt you down.”
Stoltenberg, 22/7: “We will retaliate with more democracy”.

The AUF leader, , has already expressed the opinion that the camps at Utøya should continue every summer, in defiance of one maniac’s wish to stop them. I hope they do.

Links, quotes and other stuff I’d like to keep track of:

Syltegeek på Twitter:

Måtte han forstå hva han har gjort. #forbannelse

Utmerket leder i Aftenbladet.

Svelle på Twitter:

AUF bør fortsette med sommerleirene. Resten av året bør Utøya bli nasjonalt senter for de ideene gjerningsmannen hatet.

Finn en feil.

Historier fra folk som var på Utøya:

Jeanette_F på Twitter:

Kjære aviser. Denne mannen gjorde klar en pressepakke når han la ut portrettbilder på fb. Ikke bruk dem.

Anders Heger på Twitter:

Han skal ha en forsvarer, en lang og god rettssak, human straff, så takler vi dette som det vi er: Et sivilisert samfunn. Sånn vinner vi.

Sterkt blogginnlegg fra en mor (som har fått datteren sin hjem i god behold): Til deg som planla å drepe min datter (og jada, jeg griner).

Mariusgenser på Twitter:

Det jeg skjønner nå som jeg ikke skjønte i går er: Dette landet virker. Og jeg er uendelig takknemlig for det.

Kven er terroristen.

Jo Nesbø in English in the Guardian.

Korrekturlesing?

Jeg skal fly til Oslo i morgen og sjekket inn på nett nå nylig. Jeg fikk en pop-up boks som lurte på om ikke jeg ville betale for mer bagasje. Øh, nei. Jeg skal på møter i tre dager, jeg tror neppe jeg trenger mer enn den ene forhåndsbetalte kofferten… Så valgte jeg sete og så fikk jeg en pop-up som lurte på om ikke jeg ville betale for mer bagasje. Og da ble jeg litt irritert, samt litt forvirret med hensyn til om jeg egentlig var blitt skikkelig sjekket inn eller ikke.

Og så gjorde jeg feilen å begynne å faktisk lese det som sto på siden:

sas

Jeg vet at SAS sliter litt med økonomien i perioder, men en korrekturleser kunne de vel spandere på seg likevel?

So, are you celebrating?

Because, frankly, celebrating seems a little wrong to me.

I’ve been reading reactions on twitter today, and though I feel something akin to relief, I also find it diffucult to find joy in another human being’s death. I found this tweet from boywithredwings sums it up best so far:

A monster is one who takes pleasure in the death of his enemies. A monster is dead. Take great care in how you respond to that news.

That said, I find reading twitter easier than reading traditional news media. Twitter offers rather more in the way of dark humour, which is a good thing in my opinion.

And I couldn’t help smile at the trending topics just now:

twitter_trends_02052011

I mean, really, Jack Bauer and Megatron? Huh.

He ain’t heavy

I’ve been listening to this today:

Which seems appropriate, what with what’s happening in Japan. I guess most of you heard of the bloggers’ day of silence on Friday, which I guess I kept, but it only really makes sense if you normally post every day (which I’m nowhere near doing). However, I would, naturally, suggest that we all pitch in with what we can. My favourite charities for this kind of thing would be:

Røde KorsThe Red Cross

or

Leger uten grenserMédecins Sans Frontières

Whichever charity you choose, though, I suggest you make a general donation rather than one earmarked relief for Japan. Not that I don’t think Japan needs relief, by all means, they do, but the charities will route money that way anyway. The problem with earmarking is that if, for one reason or another, they are not able to use the money for the earmarked course, the earmarking means they can’t use it elsewhere. Say the political situation makes it impossible (not so likely in this case) or logistics means they can’t get the right sort of help there (more likely) or they get more money in the earmarked fund than they actually need (it happens, you know) then the charities are not legally allowed to use it elsewhere. Which means they can end up with a big sack of funds and thousands of worthwhile projects (clean water wells in Africa, starving kids in Pakistan, homeless people in New York) and no way of routing the money where needed. I know this happened in some cases after the tsunami in 2004.

Just my penny’s worth for today.

‘Scuse me?

What were they thinking (with)?

What were they thinking (with)?

Blink and you’ll miss it

Norwegian’s new concept: Nano-trips.

landing_03

In mathematical terms nano is one billionth of something, so a nano-trip must be one billionth of a “normal” trip. If we assume a “normal” trip to be two weeks and one extra weekend (to be generous) – that is: 16 days – a nano-trip would be all of 0.0013824 seconds, if I’m not mistaken.

Even in non-nerd-speak, the nano as a prefix is currently most often used in excited talk about nano-technology, a lot of it from people who have very little idea what they are talking about, but I think most people have grasped that it concerns things that are so small it’s hard to see them.

Blink and you’ll miss it.

Just what I want for my next adventure.

En sak verdt å spre

Både Unfiltered Perception og Tarald Steins skriver i dag om Sara Mats Azmeh Rasmussen som har startet en fredelig aksjon for å rette søkelyset mot behandlingen av muslimske homser og transpersoner. Fritanke skrev om saken i går og har også en relevant artikkel fra før helgen som gir litt mer bakgrunnsinfo.