Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Spanky Rosenau sniffs out misogyny-- again!

Josh Spanky Rosenau over at Thoughts from Kansas:

More misogyny from the Disco. 'tute

Category: Creationism • Culture Wars • Policy and Politics
Posted on: November 10, 2011 10:19 AM, by Josh Rosenau
Disco. 'tute president Bruce Chapman is upset. There are ladies with their bloomers in a twist over something or other that they claim Herman Cain said. Let's read Chapman and see if we can guess what Cain is supposed to have done:
A number of significant insights are emerging from the charges of sex harassment lodged against Herman Cain. It may be wise to withhold judgement [sic] about the particulars so far. There are a number of groups operating behind the scenes to drive the story one way or another. 
Aha! Charges of sexual harassment were filed, but we should be dubious because shadowy groups are trying to destroy this innocent man.
Ummm, yea. There are a lot of political factions that would like to see Cain go away, and there is a track record of dubious charges of sexual misconduct against black men by Democrats that goes back a long way.
However, it's not too soon to note the way job problems in our times are converted into legal problems. I have commented on the tendency of lawyers for businesses and even governments to discount charges of sex discrimination and sexual harassment by settling out of court--the supposedly "cheaper" outcome for otherwise costly lawsuits. Obviously, if there really has been an illegal action or pattern of behavior the business or agency should settle, and effectively admit wrongdoing. If not, the "cheaper" outcome may become an expensive one--at least in terms of publicity.
Oh, it's a job problem. Like when Stephen Meyer doesn't make a new pot of coffee after he finish the old one, or when David Klinghoffer writes another essay blaming Charles Darwin for his hangnail. Sure, someone can sue over it, but it's not a real issue, so businesses might decide, foolishly, to settle this frivolous claim. Fortunately, while Cain has had charged lodged against him, it isn't like his former company already settled these charges over a decade ago, "effectively admitting wrongdoing."
There are all sorts of dynamics at play in accusations of this sort. Obviously some are real, some are lies, some are misunderstandings. Some are exaggerated, some are understated. Some people have less than upstanding motives.

It's a complex issue. And we know very little about the substance of the claims, and very little about the accusers and their motives.
In The American Spectator, Lisa Fabrisio [sic] makes another relevant arguement [sic]: that the Cain issue reeks of hypocrisy. Here is a modern media/entertainment culture steeped in soft porn, where new breakthroughs in lowered standards are accomplished [sic] constantly. And yet it is this same debased culture that acts offended by some official's conversational gaffe or unintended double entendre!
Excellent point. Much of our culture-- from network television to mainstream movies to rap "music"-- is barely more than soft porn. While this obviously doesn't excuse genuine sexual misconduct, the silence on the part of leftists like Rosenau leads one to wonder about whether he's using his faux-sense of outrage to score political points. Rap musicians commonly describe women using obscenities, compare them to whores and animals, and glorify rape. Bruce Chapman suggests we examine evidence carefully on sexual harassment accusations. Rosenau is outraged at... rap musicians Chapman.

What a selective sense of outrage you have, Josh.
The problem isn't what Cain did (or if Chapman's to be believed, didn't do). The problem is that there's cleavage on display at supermarket checkout lines. Hypocrisy! Women are allowed to wear revealing outfits, but an employer can't grope an employee? (Allegedly!) Besides, I bet this "sexual harassment" is just a slip of the tongue, or a joke that was taken the wrong way. You know how women are.
Of course, those of us who've read the newspapers in the last week (without being distracted by the bra ads), know a few things that Chapman doesn't.
First, we know that Cain isn't just charged with sexual harassment, he and his company settled those charges over a decade ago. And his company added a gag rule to the settlement, so that he and his former company can talk about the charges, but the women he assaulted cannot speak publicly. Politico explains what we know about those cases:
The sources — including the recollections of close associates and other documentation — describe episodes that left the women upset and offended. These incidents include conversations allegedly filled with innuendo or personal questions of a sexually suggestive nature, taking place at hotels during conferences, at other officially sanctioned restaurant association events and at the association’s offices. There were also descriptions of physical gestures that were not overtly sexual but that made women who experienced or witnessed them uncomfortable and that they regarded as improper in a professional relationship.
Rosenau exalts in unsourced unconfirmable accusations of sexual impropriety against a black man by white women. The black man is a leading contender for the Republican nomination for the presidency, and has huge powerful well-funded organizations that would like to see him destroyed.

But Rosenau is content to believe the hearsay, content to demand no genuine evidence, and content to see Cain figuratively lynched.
In addition to the three women (we know of) whose suits were settled, a fourth woman came forward and discussed a similar incident she experienced. She had been fired by Cain's National Restaurant Association, and asked to meet Mr. Cain to get help finding a new job:
Settlement by a corporation in a situation like this does not imply admission of guilt.

And if the fourth woman was genuinely assaulted (15 years ago) why did she not go to the police? What she described was a criminal act. Why didn't any of them go to the police? Why did they just take the money?

How can Cain defend himself against crap like this? No evidence, decades-old accusations, secret claims by anonymous accusers...
After taking her out for a night on the town in Washington, she said, he suggested she engage with him sexually in return for his assistance — seizing her inappropriately when they were alone in a car and running his hand up her skirt.…
As she described it, Mr. Cain ran his hand up her skirt, “reached for my genitals” and pulled her head toward his crotch. “I said, ‘What are you doing? You know I have a boyfriend; this isn’t what I came here for,’ ” Ms. Bialek said, her voice cracking. “Mr. Cain said, ‘You want a job, right?’”
Importantly:
Joel P. Bennett, a lawyer for another of Mr. Cain’s accusers, called Ms. Bialek’s description of the encounter “very similar” to Mr. Cain’s interaction with his client, who he has said received several inappropriate advances from him. Without going in details [as forbidden by their settlement], Mr. Bennett said, “It corroborates the claim.”
To dismiss crotch-grabbing, threats of forced oral sex, and offer to exchange sexual favors for employment as a "job problem," "a conversational gaffe," or "unintentional double entendre" stretches the legitimate meanings of any of those terms. Chapman is either clueless about the actual circumstances at hand, or doesn't understand sexual power dynamics and sexual harassment.
Sexual harassment claims are a major job problem. That does not mean that many aren't valid-- many are-- but such claims are common, sometimes are groundless or fraudulent, and constitute a major problem for managers. Chapman is just telling the truth.
Mr. Chapman runs a multi-million dollar organization, handling administrative matters and a large staff. He seems to genuinely not know what sexual harassment is and why it matters.
Chapman ran the U.S. Census Bureau as well, and did a fine job, as he has done with the DI. I am unaware of any complaints of sexual harassment during his tenure, and what I know of the DI is that it is superbly led and managed.

Rosenau can't run a credible blog.
Clearly, sexism infects the Discovery Institute from the top down. Not many women work at the 'tute, so maybe the issue hasn't come up, or maybe this misogynist attitude has simply created an environment where few women are comfortable working.
Want to see something really funny? Josh "misogyny sniffer" Rosenau is (of course) a lefty who is apparently a bit of a political groupie. In his photo album on his blog he has nice photos of his hero Bill Clinton and his hero John Edwards.

Odd. I couldn't find any posts from misogyny-sniffer Rosenau decrying serial sexual assault and a credible allegation of rape by a senior government official and infidelity against a wife dying of cancer that led to indictment for felony misuse of federal campaign funds by a politician who came within one state of becoming Vice President of the United States. In fact, Rosenau seems to be quite a booster.

In Rosenau's left field, misogyny and sexual misconduct is only worth public comment when it consists of poorly sourced poorly evidenced accusations against a black Republican, or when a highly accomplished leader of an institute that doesn't share Rosenau's infatuation with Darwin dares to suggest that we try harder to find the truth. 

13 comments:

  1. In Rosenau's left field, misogyny and sexual misconduct is only worth public comment when it consists of poorly sourced poorly evidenced accusations against a black Republican, or when a highly accomplished leader of an institute that doesn't share Rosenau's infatuation with Darwin dares to suggest that we try harder to find the truth.

    That's right. These disgusting Darwinists are what's wrong with America. Our great country would be better if we shipped them to Russia or North Korea where they can practice their false religion and kill each other (because it's survival of the strongest and there are no absolute morals).

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  2. Michael,

    I'm not concerned one way or another with any sex harassment case that far in the past.

    What concerns me regarding Herman Cain are his statements that he 'believes' that China is attempting to develop nuclear weapons (they've had them since the '60s) and his mathematical skills where he claims that America increasing its economy at a rate of 6% per annum will outgrow China increasing its economy at a rate of 10% per annum.

    Sorry, at these growth rates, China will eventually outgrow surpass America, assuming of course that neither hits limits to growth, such as lack of water or energy.

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  3. @bach:

    I'm not defending Cain's politics. I'm just pointing out that Rosenau is a jerk. I despise the way the allegations have been used to destroy him politically, especially by hypocrites who just loved Clinton and Edwards and other lefty sleezbags.

    We should be discussing Cain's ideas.

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  4. This: "I'm not defending Cain's politics. I'm just pointing out that Rosenau is a jerk."

    and this: "We should be discussing Cain's ideas."

    don't seem to square well.

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  5. @oleg:

    Roseau's jerkiness takes precedence over all other issues.

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  6. Of course. It's more important than the presidential elections.

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  7. Michael,

    I wasn't criticizing Cain's politics. I was criticizing his knowledge of foreign affairs and his reasoning abilities.

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  8. Cain is an ignorant buffoon and an embarrassment to the Republican Party. If there is a concerted effort to destroy Cain you can bet it’s coming from the right, not the left, because Obama would crush him.

    -KW

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  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  10. As I said before, America is a great country! The only problem is that it's full of Americans.

    Come up to Canada! We have Stephen Harper for PM, a really great guy, and winters to definitively show that AGW is a hoax!

    :-)

    PS: I deleted my last comment to correct a spelling mistake: blogspot spell check is so SO-SO!

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  11. Pepe,

    For once we agree. Canada is indeed a great country of wonderful people and natural beauty. I spent some time as a postdoc in Kingston, Ontario. The USA can learn a lot from Canada, such as universal healthcare and French cooking. The European stuff.

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  12. @KW:

    Cain is neither ignorant nor a buffoon. He is much better prepared to be president than Obama was. He has major accomplishments in the private sector, unlike Obama, and is essentially just as inexperienced as Obama was in government. He's also a much more honest man, and he doesn't have the ties to the Chicago Democrat Mafia.

    That said, I'm not supporting him so far. He has made some contradictory statements (abortion, pubic unions) that disturb me.

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