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Thomas C King

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Everything posted by Thomas C King

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  11. We're more or less the same genetically. However, it's obviously not true to say there is no such thing as culture. Culture can be defined in terms of artefacts like food, tools, etc. I don't think that's what you're disuputing. But also those social ones, like norms, which I think you're disputing. Specifically whether someone can behave differently, because of norms and values from the culture handed down to them or the one they've adopted over time. Norms over crossing roads independently of there being any legal requirement are an easy observation to make. More rigorous are things like the world values survey. If there were no such thing as cultural norms and values, we wouldn't see the clustering that we do see in those two cases.
  12. On the original question... ...too woke? I think climate change is becoming less and less of a partisan issue in the UK. And 'woke' is really just something used to denigrate some views traditionally ascribed to the left. Sometimes though, 'wokeism' is a kind of do-nothing-but-pay-lip-service ism. People on social media demonstrating how anti-racist, homophobic or transphobic they are. How climate conscious they are as well. In a nutshell, I see CaRT are more paying lip-service to climate issues. I'm not sure they have some grand plan for bringing the canals to become a 'green' navigations. Although, for a while I did think their grand plan might be shifting to canals being primarily cycling and walking routes, but that'd be far too forward-thinking even if the organisation were that cynical.
  13. For those interested, one of the most famous categorisations of culture are Geert Hofstede's. I knew his son, also called Gert Hofstede (ffs). The dimensions, widely criticised but nevertheless interesting, can be found here: https://geerthofstede.com/culture-geert-hofstede-gert-jan-hofstede/6d-model-of-national-culture/
  14. You can say that humans are, in general, capable of it. But I don't think we can say it's universal to the same extent across all cultures. Not that's what you were saying exactly. Having a cursory look at a WHO report, they describe children from Arab-countries who emigrate to the US at an older age having far lower rates of violence compared to those who emigrate and become naturalized at a younger age. Another example is Sweden's changing (reducing) violence against children, attributed to changing social norms. The report outlines cases where there is a discrepancy between what individuals think the social norms are and what the wider thinks. Reducing the gap (e.g., between people who think it's normal for men to demand sex from their wives, and the wider population that doesn't) reduces violence. I don't know how the UK stacks up in the "casual violence" category that Welsh describes, but I think it's wrong to ignore that there are cultural differences.
  15. More than other countries, but not more than most, that'd be nuts! Britain is still doing pretty well on violence (looking at homicide rates) when compared internationally. I think what you say on stereotypes is correct in terms of what is rational and what isn't. But I've not seen people accuse others of stereotyping when making the rational observation such as "men are more likely to be violent than women". I've only seen the correct attribution of stereotyping when people either impute a general property of a group onto individuals, or take a few individual cases and then over-generalise to the larger group. Of course, incorrect accusations will happen from time to time, but I don't get the feeling that it's commonplace.
  16. I don't think many people would suggest that. If you believe there is a thing called 'culture', then you believe that you can say general things about a group of people belonging to that culture. Most people know this. Stereotyping is when you go from the level of culture down to individuals and say "you're like this because you're a part of that culture". Stereotype as in a strong impression of a type someone is, rather than a probablistic one. I've never had anyone accuse me of stereotyping when I've spoken generally about a culture.
  17. Arthur is on fire today. As for "Germanic" countries, if we're talking about the Netherlands. My experience of living there is that there are strong social norms to doe normaal (be normal, it's a phrase bandied around if you do anything outlandish like wear expensive clothes or show off). This is attributed by the Dutch to calvanism on the one hand, and what is called a "pillarised" society on the other where there is a kind of arms-length tolerance where you can do what you want as long as you stay away and don't upset the order. This apparently evolved to allow catholics, protestants, jews, and communists to co-exist. However, it's not a paragon of tolerance and niceness towards everyone. The intolerance is permitted so long as it is normal intolerance. For example, blacking up for festivities, or calling black people zwaart pietes (santas black helpers). All good fun, because it's traditional. Indeed, the requirement to be normal is in itself also a type of intolerance. On bikes specifically, Dutch bikes are usually cheap and second-hand. They get nicked, and if you're ever stuck in the middle of the night you can easily buy a nicked one for ten euros at a train station. They don't, I think, have as much a problem as we do with the vandalism though. Partially because bikes are so essential for getting around it's probably even more stupid to vandalise them than it is over here.
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  19. CRT must be embarrassed, the danger sign is now in completely the wrong place.
  20. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-hampshire-59076280?at_custom4=96482D54-37F7-11EC-8214-E63D3A982C1E&at_campaign=64&at_medium=custom7&at_custom1=[post+type]&at_custom3=BBC+News&at_custom2=facebook_page&fbclid=IwAR2hj4IfQMjd4uX0z7lQsnmKCcYHZxgmOk6xGYUz_5MvG3FmlnePE2Ya6gc
  21. We moved on board having never stayed on a narrowboat before. It depends on your personality, but it turns out my partner needed more time to adapt to change than I do. Your post hints that this is a gradual thing you're doing, but if not then it might make sense to stay on board a few days here and there before being on-board permanently. In hindsight, psychologically, I wish I'd known that I'd get used to doing the Elsan. I thought I never would. And as others have said, downsize possessions significantly. We thought we had, but then we needed to get rid of another half of everything we had left.
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