Pulling Together


Miscellaneous Ramblings

Last night’s Any Questions (Radio 4) contained a couple of real howlers which showed how out of touch the political classes are with reality. The first was one of the panellists claiming Transgender people are the most vulnerable people in our society. Really? Are they more vulnerable than abused children, single mothers unable to feed themselves and their children, sick people unable to find a place in a hospital, homeless people in winter weather? However distressing it might be to find a conflict between how one sees oneself and how other people see one, I cannot believe the resultant suffering can be as great as those facing cold and starvation, unemployment, or numerous other real threats to their basic well-being. Talk about First-World problems! It shows just how little our political class understand real hardship.

The other was the argument over public sector pay, which failed to grapple with the reality that the Public Sector workers’ case is just but the mismanagement of the real economy for the benefit of the market-based economy over the last forty years means there is simply no money to pay for those real jobs. It will take years to get the economy back on track so real jobs pay real money.

Then there are two places in the news where real suffering pales these issues into insignificance: Ukraine and the Turkish-Syrian border. The war in one and the earthquake in the other mean death and destruction depriving survivors of the basic necessities of shelter, food, and water. The programme’s answer to the former was to keep supplying weapons with the usual statements of support for the victim nation in that dreadful war. Fine, so far as it goes, but as one panellist noted we do need a strategy for the longer-term, or we’ll just be prolonging the agony. Unless we give him a good reason Putin won’t stop.

As for the earthquake, there’s little to be done except convoys of aid which will always be too little for those in need of it.

I made a shocking discovery in the week, when a writer in Spiked revealed something the mainstream media would never mention; that what has become a preoccupying subject for contemporary culture was invented by a crackpot American psychologist with pædophile sympathies and a fascination with children and sex, who falsified his research to gain respectability.

His name was John Money, and he succeeded. Although he should be remembered as a combination of Egas Moniz (inventor of lobotomy) and Jimmy Savile, he is largely ignored, but the system of belief he invented to aid his fascination has become the basis of Wokeist orthodoxy. The story is shocking as, in the name of medicine, he abused generations of children and left a legacy of abuse continuing to the present. I have no idea whether his abuse involved touching. It was certainly verbal, and physical in the sense it involved sending children for operations to advance his experimenting. His most important experiment failed (or, if you prefer a strictly scientific approach, produced a negative result) but he wrote it up over a couple of decades as a glowing success, and it still forms the orthodox understanding underpinning treatment of sex and gender issues today, certainly in the public and political sphere. To what extent professionals in the field still hold to it I wouldn’t know. There is plenty of information on Money available to look up on line.

Media are something of a mixed bag. Spiked sometimes contains articles which make sense, some straight away and others after reading the argument. At other times its writers can be insensitive, insulting, or just plain wrong. Perhaps the point is that they’re all permitted to write their opinions and we’re free to agree or disagree. I also scan the GB News website to see what it might mention the BBC leaves out, but its strident tone and nonsense weather stories undermine confidence. Much of its content is probably best described as tabloid; celebrity gossip, especially about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and noisy protests from its presenters. I can’t begin to think why they find that an appropriate tone for their readers. Who do they think their readers are, I wonder? As for the good old BBC, that presents in a calm tone but presumes its readers believe unproven ideas as hard fact. It is frustrating to have ones opinions taken for granted.

Here, life carries on, a little stuck. The economy is in the doldrums, the housing market almost stopped, putting other things on hold. Until I find another home for life I cannot invest in making a more energy-efficient property. However, I suppose I should be grateful. I live in neither a war zone nor one prone to earthquakes or extreme weather, and I have a roof over my head, even if it’s not quite the one I’d like. That’s something, I suppose.

So there we are — Bearing up. Mustn’t grumble.


Since writing this I have come across an earlier proponent of John Money’s ideas in Dr Magnus Hirschfeld (1868-1935), so my claim he invented the ideas he used to promote his work is clearly wrong and I must apologise for misleading readers. Ideas rarely have a single originator and it appears this one has a long history and developed through the contributions and development of multiple thinkers. However, without evidence it is difficult to establish truth and repetition can give a false authority to thoughts with little real foundation. That is why it is important to trace theories to demonstrable foundations.

It is clear to me I was too keen to accept the writings of others on Dr Money and failed to recognise all knowledge tends to be imperfect and partial. History is particularly prone to more facts coming to light and changing our understanding of how ideas and events unfolded, but I should still have been less dogmatic in my claim.

About the Author

K J Petrie has a Full Technological Certificate in Radio, TV and Electronics, an HNC in Digital Electronics and a BA(Hons) in Theological Studies.

His interests include Christian and societal unity, Diverse Diversity, and freedoms from want, from fear, of speech, and of association. He is a member of the Social Democratic Party.

The views expressed here are entirely personal and unconnected with any body to which he belongs.

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