25 Jan 2013

Friday party!

This [NSFW = nudity] PPS may help people prioritize their water use and reduce waste.

(FYI, I think it's more funny than sexist. IMO, the politically correct crowd has aligned themselves rather too closely with mullahs who want to kill blasphemers for cartoons. The right to free speech means that someone, somewhere, will always be offended, but that's the cost of open debate and social progress. Your thoughts?)


Maria said...

I haven't seen the image, because I'm at work. So I can't comment on the specifics of whether it is sexist or funny or likely to alienate many women in your audience. But I think your defense of it is garbage.

Your right to free speech does not mean that you have the right to anyone's attention or respect. People who post offensive, worthless things on a regular basis should expect a combination of derision, anger, and marginalization from grown-up discourse as a consequence; saying "don't feed the troll" is not the same as issuing a death threat.

People who post things they know perfectly well will make a significant fraction of women in their audience feel unwelcome should stop doing that - saying everything that pops into your head or reposting every image that made you chuckle is not actually a mandatory feature of "open debate". But if they don't want to stop posting those things, they should at least stand up and admit that they are contributing to gender disparities in their chosen field.

If you believe that this image is a worthwhile contribution to social progress, defend it on its merits! Say why you think it's not sexist - and be willing to engage respectfully with folks who disagree.

MG said...

I saw the water use and conservation pps. I felt this pps can be strengthened by the following facts:
1. Agriculture water use or irrigation water use, is the dominant use in the world (varying from 60% of total water use in the US (?) to 92% in India)
2. The domestic / industrial water use is obviously smaller proportion compared with irrigation / agriculture water use
3. The potential savings in water, thus comes from irrigation/agriculture and it represents 'consumptive use', while that from domestic/industrial use is 'non consumptive use'.
4. Currently more than 80% of water use for irrigation as well as for domestic purpose in India is from groundwater
5. Electrical energy to pump groundwater is provided free of cost to farmers in India. However this subsidy forms tip of the ice berg of the imputed cost of groundwater, since the investment on irrigation wells is borne by the farmers which forms at least 75% of the imputed cost of groundwater, ceteris paribus the high failure rate of irrigation wells in hard rock areas, which form 65% of India's geographical area. Currently 66% of irrigaition pumpsets in India are diesel pumpsets, while 34% are electrical pump sets.
6. Thus there is an immense role of capacity building of farmers regarding 'water budgeting' instead of 'energy budgeting', since developing countries like India, which represent the highest groundwater use in the world (drawing twice that of the US and six times that of EU).
7. Hence the Govt needs to devise low cost groundwater level recorders to be used in irrigation borewells / tubewells in order to measure the daily groundwater extracted for different crops by farmers. This will help to educate them regarding the rate of overdraft of groundwater. In addition, it will help to educate them, how much they need to recharge in relation to discharge.

David Zetland said...

@Maria -- Thanks for the questions/positioning. I don't think it's sexist, as it portrays women with wet t-shirts, and those women chose to show off their bodies. That's why I posted it (in addition to its silly motivation for people paying attention to the "value" of water in use). I wouldn't post something that *I* think is sexist because such discrimination (categorizing someone based on gender when gender is not necessarily relevant, e.g., women and money) is both harmful (perpetuating incorrect stereotypes) and useless (drawing attention from more relevant discussion).

My caveat ("I'm posting this and if you don't like it, say something back rather than attacking me") is not aimed at people like you; it's aimed at people too lazy to think. I also don't think it's garbage, since there are way too many "all gut, no brain" people out there.

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