Tasmanian Times


About an early adolescent boy who wants to ‘transition’ to being a girl …

Callum Booth-Ford plays Max, an 11-year-old who is initially confused over his gender ...


‘Butterfly’, which is a three part TV series about an early adolescent boy who wants to ‘transition’ to being a girl, gets all the ‘heart warming’, ‘delicate’ and ‘sensitive’ accolades about how ‘a loving family’ tries to deal with the increasingly tough politics that now infuse the psychiatric disorder of gender dysphoria.

The ideological narrative is a little more subtle than ‘Priscilla Queen of the Desert’, but it has all the elements to persuade us that this issue is popping up out of the cultural ether ‘spontaneously’, as we are all persuaded to start to explore the political fabric of ‘gender fluidity’, where we the audience are being groomed to accept early, massive and irreversible medical intervention/sterilization as the preferred option to psychiatric treatment … or even just doing nothing until the child is of an age of slightly more responsible and mature judgement.

The program narrative is emblematic of a number of cumulative cultural trends that have fundamentally shifted the relationship of children to adults, and mass populations generally to the marketed system of social administration and consciousness management.

These shifts have ’empowered’ children (removed them from the mentorship of their parents in favour of ‘other voices’) in ways that more traditional totalitarian regimes have tried, but failed to do. Mao’s Cultural Revolution in China temporarily reversed the roles of adults and children, but it was too disruptive and violent, had to be shut down and Mao died. In the West, ‘the adolescent revolution’ promoted and sponsored by privatized marketed consciousness makers goes on, like a protracted Infantile Plague that constantly seeps into adult society…and redefines it in adolescent form, with all the self absorbed narcissism we have come to know and love….exported across the entire socio-economic spectrum from financial system boards of directors to the welfare sector…and everything in between.

The mechanisms of this plague suffuse all the assumptions within this ‘challenging’ and ‘taboo busting’ entertainment called ‘Butterfly’. It is an expression of the forces that underlie and drive an economy and culture that has moved from the necessity of needs, to the desirability of wants to the totalitarian power of fantasy based indulgence, where the only rules left are those of indulgence capitalism…where there aren’t any rules at all that might interrupt the exponential growth of the system and the politics of desire, fantasies and consuming them at all costs.

Protracted economic, social and existential indulgence, which tolerates and/or encourages excesses and variously ‘suboptimal’ conduct, corrodes rules based behaviour and compromises the boundaries they set, until in the end, there are none except the default rule that anything goes and anything does….and the excuses for it even more imaginative (and spurious) than the adolescent special pleading/exceptionalism that comes with it.

For those who are interested in where that sort of thing eventually ends up, see the interim report of the banking, superannuation and financial services misconduct commission (Royal Commissioner Hayne said, “It is not at all easy to understand why so many employees and executives at AMP were unable to recognise that to charge fees for services that will not, and cannot, be provided is not just unlawful, but also ethically and morally wrong”.), the South Australian Nyland royal commission into the child protection system (The then premier of SA, Jay Weatherill said of it, “What we do know is that a staggering one in four children are the subject of a notification of abuse or neglect — and for Aboriginal children this figure rises to almost nine in 10.” https://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-08-08/child-protection-systems-royal-commission…) or the Northern Territory ‘Little Children are Sacred’ report (that led to the Northern Territory intervention in remote aboriginal communities in 2007, in response to allegations of rampant child sexual abuse).

The dynamic layout of this plague is as follows:

1. Children have been given a quasi adult agency through an indulgent human rights agenda which has no conditionalities or qualifications or necessary processes before they appropriate these liberties and rights, or requirement to learn their necessary underpinning stewardship, obligations and disciplines, or acquire the necessary maturity of judgement that give life to liberties and rights…and prevent them from being turned into disinhibition and an overweening sense of consumer entitlement-on-demand.

Such underpins put a stop to them being turned into consumer freebies and fudging them into increasingly tendentious claims that span real need, into discretionary wants into-any-fantasy-you-like that is then transformed into a sacred right. And this is happening in the context of an economic system that now routinely mobilizes mass responses on the basis of indulgent dreams and satiating them, to the extent that hardly anyone can now differentiate indulgence from liberality, social decency or moral virtue. Humanitarian libertarianism has become a completely colonized regime artefact.

2. Over a 50-70 year period, deregulation of the social system/collective in favour of private sectional interests, individual egoism/narcissism and adolescent special pleading/exceptionalism, has not only shredded our social infrastructure, its adult role templates, and securitizing rules based boundaries and taboos, but handed the whole business of socialization over to a totalitarian system of public relations/marketspeak that now dominates the entire architecture of social and media discourse.

That system has us all, but especially our children, at its complete mercy, to the extent that any motivated commercial or social actor can fast track its agenda into the social milieu without let or editing. Alternative sources of authority and received ideas and beliefs have been eliminated and/or discredited and/or marginalized.

After Marxism, feminism, has offered us perhaps the largest proposed secular re-regulation of the social and economic system in the last century. It never got traction because Capitalism only does deregulation, which is the very nasty, perverse and disabling booby prize that women got instead; i.e., liberty as sex role commodification and sexual availability on demand. And it does this precisely because it is systematically geared to disarm/dispose of all potential sources of social management, criticism and values that might interfere with the roll out of a world order without borders, or ideological limitation or barriers to opportunity and opportunists of the commercial, social and ideological kind.

3. As social and moral boundaries have disappeared and sex, or rather the fantasy of sex, has been co-opted as the primary selling/marketing tool within an indulgent economic and cultural system, children have been prematurely co-opted through numerous media channels into a very complex and difficult world of adult reproductive behaviour in which they are emotionally completely out of their depth, leaving them vulnerable to any suggestion or practice, no matter how dysfunctional, species alienated and damaging it might be. And this is made worse by their almost universal blithe conceit that they know all about it, all the way from A to B.

But what is far more telling is that the sex hormonal flush of adolescence is so overwhelming, its potential for behavioural and attitudinal leveraging turns it into a deep consciousness manipulation tool that is almost impossible to edit out later.

This premature co-option of children into adult worlds, not only enables them to escape the power of their parents, but it gives them a quite false sense of equality with adults, when what is really happening is that they are being invited to fall prey to forces much more sophisticated than they are, without them ever having the slightest idea that they are prey, very easy meat indeed and their collaboration in this is the apotheosis of the totalitarian ideal of the marketed regime conditioned subject.

As the Jesuits used to say, “Give us the child and we will give you the man”. The difference today is that it is the agents of Indulgence Capitalism who do this job, by emulating the jewel wasp. This insect penetrates into the decision making centre of its victim’s brain and injects a selective venom that paralyses its autonomous judgement so that the wasp can remotely control it. The victim then allows the predator to lead it to its nest where it lays its eggs inside it without resistance. The victim live incubates them, defends them against predators and then zombie-like becomes a fresh food supply when the eggs hatch.

The modus operandi of the jewel wasp is the template for modern marketing and juveniles have negligible defences against it.

When you watch the wretched ‘Butterfly’ parents’ mystified and futile attempts to contain their child’s cross sexual behaviour, think of the jewel wasp sting in the back of the kid’s head….In a previous generation, when there were no external cultural cues and ideological leveraging, the kid would have probably become an uncomplaining and perfectly well adapted closet crossdresser. Today his ‘condition’ is planted and incubated into an existential and psychiatric crisis with all the ideological bells and whistles whose ‘only’ solution is sterilization of his most basic function as a human being.

4. As the fantasy of sex has become an ever more powerful economic and cultural artefact, it has taken over some of the existential/’spiritual’ space that has been increasingly vacated by organized religion. ‘The dance of life’, which is reproductive sex, has been trumped by ‘sexuality’ (one’s sexual receptivity/interests), which has itself been trumped by the bogus ‘sexistentialist’ identitarian proposition that ‘I am my sexuality’. I would suggest this is even more ideologically fanciful and misguided than the belief in an omnipotent God in whose image we are all supposed to be made.

Sex and sexuality are not unimportant, but they are the least important part of broadly socialized richly layered, robustly developed and morally coherent adult characters who are capable of grounding and contextualizing themselves across a diverse range of life roles and objectives. People who see their sexuality as central to them do so either because they are adolescents and can’t help it, and/or there isn’t much else going for them…and/or they have a sexual-political axe to grind.

5. These larger shifts now mean that any minor private sexual fantasy and/or sexual off message error can be inflated, elaborated, leveraged and politicised into a force majeure, that will overwhelm surrounding relationships, familial infrastructure and the larger social fabric, regardless of long term consequences, like the larger effects of further destabilizing the reproductive centre, as children are systematically manipulated and sexually ‘plasticised’ into a ‘metrosexual’ regime that has no edges, and where in this case, plastic surgeons have been designated to clean up the ideological mess…and clean up.

This three part feature series is not propaganda in the traditional sense, because it is more emotionally elaborate and complex than that, but it openly markets the cross sexual lobby’s agenda, which is not just about making space for a socially microscopic minority, but to gain market share through ‘grooming’, ‘education’ and ’empowerment’ of anyone who starts to become sexually uncertain and insecure, particularly through the sometimes bumpy and very, very vulnerable transition of adolescence.

The music of the sexual-political Pied Piper (whose original magical medieval music ‘hypnotized’ all the children of the town of Hamelin to follow him into a magic cave) is a small background theme in this film, but it gets disproportionate traction because after 50-70 years of deregulation in the pursuit of an indulgent economy and culture, the reproductive centre is now so damaged, decompassed and unstable, it can no longer defend its children. Any passing opportunistic fad can plunge it into a welter of further and much larger losses, which can crystallize up to a generation later. What makes the Butterfly’s agenda so formidable is that it represents a long accumulation of social and ideological forces that isn’t really visible until one joins the dots.

The parents in this film are little more than caretakers caught up in a situation totally outside their control and understanding. Gender dysphoria does not exist in a vacuum. It gets mediated through a deregulated culture from a minor footnote to a major ‘issue’ through systematic promotion and marketing into schools, libraries, academia, health professional associations and across the media.

Alongside this are well organized attacks by transgen activists through social badmouthing, isolating, undermining, discrediting, defunding, deplatforming and disemploying opponents, censorship posing as ‘anti vilification’ and deep networking of key strategic support to garner spokespeople of power and influence. And it all looks ‘spontaneous’ when what it really is, is a protracted campaign, with its own repertoire of slogans, keywords, stereotypes, cliches, euphemisms and dysphemisms (negative opposites of euphemisms).

The appearance of this film seems innocent enough and an honest ‘issue piece’ at one level. But at another it is training us to the tiger’s saddle, where if you are on it, you can’t get off and you can’t stay on, because fundamentally, surgically and pharmacologically engineered transgenderism is always going to be a medicalized ‘fake’ in the service of delusional sexual fantasy, that can only be maintained with hormone therapy and constant ideological group affirmation….and aggression for which the transgen lobby is already infamous…because its ideological thrust is so tendentious.

We are confronted here with analogous issues to the art market in relation to authenticity; i.e., imitation (in the style of), copying/facsimile (a close reproduction of an original work) and fake/forgery (deliberate attempting to pass off something as authentically original when it is not).

No doubt, particularly in the case of adolescent period (either by doing the sex change procedures early in pubescence or putting of pubescence by using pubescent blockers) ‘transitions’ will be a much more complete and transformative than if it is done later in life, but even the most convincing look replicas are not the real deal because they do not have the most basic function that defines sex in the first place…the biological capacity to bear children. Sterility is nature’s final word. At best, sexistentialist identity politics are an ideological cover story to obscure the fundamental facts of life. At worst it is a dishonest attempt to pass off a fake as ‘real’. Every one of these ‘transgens’ is going to have to at some point admit to significant others the truth that they are affecting the appearance rather than the reality.

In the ideological realm, the act of identity forgery is not of the secretive backdoor criminal nature that we expect in the art world, whereby art critical expertise as to what is real is fooled by forgery expertise. Rather, the act of sexual/political forgery is transferred to the mass construction of consciousness whereby consciousness of reality is transformed according to an external agenda run by a lobby group in the business of existential/social alteration. Remember the jewel wasp….

The establishment of sexistential ideology is only the beginning.

‘Gender studies’ is a pseudo-scientific parallel of the now long discredited racial ‘science’ or ‘eugenics’ movement; i.e., an ideological idea wrapped in a scientific rationalization. ‘Gender’ is every bit as much an ideological construct as ‘race’ is.

All ‘social science’ is more or less an oxymoron because all social science more or less unconsciously tries to introduce and validate underlying and unstated assumptions and prejudices using scientific method. This does not become obvious for several decades until the underlying assumptions and values it attempts to validate become sufficiently ‘old fashioned’ to become obvious, much in the same way that old films reveal the prejudices and styling of the realities of another age. On top of that, any ‘science’ connected to sexual politics is bound to boast more ideological bouffant than Donald Trump’s hairdo, which is why my attempt below at definition pretends to be no more than distinguishing terms that current ideologues are rather fond of fudging.

Sex is a reproductive biological function, the fundamental reason we exist as a species and it only produces males and females. Anything else is a biologically sterile mistake. ‘Sexuality’ is a socially constructed, categorized, rationalized and these days absurdly inflated sexual status based on feeling which should not be confused with a state of grace or special insight. It is a glorified fantasy which most anything to do with sex is, as are its more serious malfunctions, malfeasances and various other error messages. ‘Gender’ is how we manufacture the social-political context of sex, its social roles and power structures that arise out of the means of social reproduction. Gender ideology is only tangentially connected to biological sex and sexual feeling.

These days, sex, sexuality and gender are wilfully fudged, cribbed and fluffed by minoritarian sectional interests past increasingly bamboozled and mystified dorkasaurs that are your ordinary punters, who can be ridiculously easily frozen into discombobulated confusion and fear when ‘inclusive’ (don’t have to qualify) and ‘progressive’ (historical assumptionism) regime apparatchiks and ideological opinionati (received wisdomites) mutter their all powerful magical words (cliches and negative stereotypes).

These come in different flavours, such as ‘bigot’ (strong views), ‘prejudice’ (beliefs ‘we’ don’t approve of), ‘authoritarian’ (firm), ‘right wing conservative’ (lacks empathy and essential ideological massage oils), ‘phobic haters’ (denial of legitimate and principled political agenda) ‘discriminatory’ (the exercise of ordinary critical judgement/discernment that ‘we’ don’t agree with) and Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist or TERFs {feminist critics who think ‘inclusion’ for male to female wannabees, and most particularly ones who want to be accepted as women purely on their own recognisance, is an unconscionable try on, especially when it pertains to hijacking women’s hard won rights, protections and places, including women’s sport and recreation facilities, female prisons, refuge shelters, bathrooms, changing facilities, special funding aimed at specific women’s disadvantage issues and female only quotas}

Trying to determine types of gender is exactly the same kind of ideological baloney that late medieval scholasticism used to practice, by trying to determine how many angels could balance on a pinhead. The possibilities are only limited by the creative quantifying powers of the imagination There are almost endless ‘genders’ yet to be discovered amongst our sexually off message ‘angels’. Just when you think you have it all covered, up pops a newbie and this can go on ad nauseam, keeping the gender studies wallahs in fat academic stipends indefinitely.

And if the ‘butterfly’ in this series gets into his thirties and eventually works all this out, he is trapped in the choice he made at the very impressionable and ‘persuadable’ age of say 11, living with the potential risks of lifelong hormone therapy…and inability to regain an ‘operating’ phallus or sire children, even if he could get a sex change reversal to re-arrange his sexual persona ‘look’.

The fantasies that drive these disorders are extremely difficult to get rid of and require lifelong active management, workarounds and ongoing reconciliation by very committed ‘sufferers’ and sometime therapists who singly or together contain and/or chip away at the problem. There is very rarely a complete and permanent fix, especially in the case of gender dysphoria, where on top of the internal fantasy/messages there are the messages from the gender fluidity cultists (ideological/quasi religious irrational beliefs) to muddy the waters, much in the same way as might be the case if one were passionately ‘the’ Justin Buber…and one had a cheer squad of Buberites constantly telling one it was all true and that one really was the real deal Buber.

None of the choices are going to be fantastic. Whatever happens, there will be big compromises, whether it is to try to be a man and find a partner who will ‘accommodate’ one’s female fantasies and tastes in cross dressing, or keep the whole thing to oneself and have a pretty ordinary but reproductively functional sex life, or have the operations and become a sexual facsimile in a transgender/queer community in the same way that drag queens do.

Accommodation of sexual preferences by one’s sexual partner is likely going to preclude or potentially compromise other and very possibly more important criteria for partnering choice in ways that risk giving one more of what one didn’t want and less of what one really did. There will be as many compromises on that front as remaining the normative male and not importing one’s sexual agenda into the relationship.

Sometimes one has to be careful what one asks of the Gods, in case they grant it…which especially applies to the ‘sex change’ medical procedure. It spruiks the appearance of having your cake and eat it. Someone waves around a magical potion or two and the scalpel-of-all-your-dreams-coming-true, and voila; once a guy, now repackaged as ‘a girl’. But ‘package’ is the operative word. It will always be a facsimile. You have to keep taking the potions. One will always (unless the operation is done at an age well before real adult consent is possible, even if puberty blockers can be ‘safely’ employed to age say 16) be stuck with the basic physiology of a male. The procedure is not without risk both in the short and long term and above all, one is never going to be a biological father or mother. All that is so very distant and beyond the ordinary ken of an 11 year old who can only see the overwhelmingly pressing now.

And again, there will be a lot of relationship ramifications and compromises after ‘the procedure’. It is extremely unlikely that most men are going to settle for a transgendered ‘woman’ as a life partner. Most men want a the genuine article ovaries packed partner they can father children with, no matter how convincing the make-up, voice falsetto, clothing, hairdo, breasts and sexual organ are, or how cleverly ‘she’ can conceal that a male body frame and power to weight ratios, or doesn’t have the same female subcutaneous body fat, or how well ‘she’ conforms to conventional female sex role gender stereotypes.

To say that the sexual-politics of one’s future transgendered life are possibly going to be ‘complicated’ is an understatement; something an 11 year old just won’t compute.

I suffer from sadomasochism which I probably picked up at boarding school in the late ‘50s. I have lived for 36 years in a completely ‘vanilla’ relationship. It is not sexually ideal, but it ticks what for me are all the important boxes for a lifelong relationship. I am not suggesting for a moment that is the only way forward, but for me, it was the least relationship hazardous and most reliably sustainable way forward. My ‘sexuality’ does not define me except at the unavoidable imaginative margins which are no one else’s business except mine (except when making an ideological point). My beast-in-the-basement is under firm lock and key and staying there for life, no matter how much it rattles its cage, which it frequently does.

I am also slightly autistic, but I do not go around pretending that it is some sort of existential state of grace. It is a specialized consciousness, but whatever the arguable beneficial intellectual trade-offs, it doesn’t make me any less the occasional social pain-in-the arse, which is why I had such a terrible time at school and why I am completely inured to negative feedback. This defect in my character is something I have had to learn to work around, as indeed those around me have had to do if they were (or are) going to tolerate me for more than five minutes.

But that is a very adult view, when one weighs up all the variables on the basis of experience, reflection and mature judgement. A kid of 11 hasn’t got a prayer of doing that and to let him charge off to charge up on female sex hormones leading to sex change surgery is simply an abdication of adult responsibility for the stewardship and mentorship of a child. It is the most terrible betrayal, even though it isn’t the fault of the parents that a nasty dose of adolescent gender dysphoria has blown up in their faces.

Parents faced with a gender dysphoric child are in a very tough situation because the condition is being systematically legitimized and ideologically sanctified throughout the architecture of social discourse and lobby group pressure in the medical/health system/peak professional bodies. The weakened social infrastructure for parenting means the ideological transgen Pied Pipers can make the rest of us dance to their tune. We are all just passively reacting to the incoming assault and scrambling for cover before we even know where the ambush is coming from and who/what is undermining us. And that is because the transgen lobby is a completely integrated element within the enormous deregulatory pressure being applied throughout the system of social administration over multiple decades.

And if there is any parental or larger intra family division on how to resist the tide, it is game over, just like in Butterfly. Bring on the potions and the scalpels. Children maybe young, but they are not stupid and they are just as expert at playing the ends of the middle as anyone else. If they get online ‘support’ on the web or ‘community’ based ‘transition’ groups, it is like ‘feeding’ troubled Muslim kids on Islamic State/Taliban propaganda or getting them into religiously militant focus groups, with the same sort of result.

Propaganda films that market plastic surgery and hormones to solve gender dysphoria are a mark of the extent to which the reproductive centre and the social infrastructure for mentoring and managing next generation social product into a secure adulthood, is starting to collapse. It marks our collective loss of control not just of sexual imagination, but the processes of responsible decision making at an appropriate stage in life where one has some hope of juggling all the variables and making a sustainable decision.

18 isn’t an ideal time to make such large decisions, but it is at least the minimum age of responsible adult participation in a modern society. And it does mean that the parents are not complicit in an early adolescent force majeure. He has the legal capacity to stand on his own feet and wear the very adult consequences of his decisions. He can never turn round and say to them that they didn’t hold the fort for him, even against his will and passions of the time, and met their responsibilities to him to guide and support him towards his ultimate adult choice, whatever that eventually turns out to be. A lot can happen in 6-7 years, particularly if they can gradually show the kid that the transgen support networks are a cult that has been made respectable by its marketing and sales department.

Parents need a legal defence against these pressures, which enforces a social policy of not allowing minors to enter into medical relations that will compromise their ordinary sexual functions until they reach an age of adult discretion … and no exceptions, even if children threaten suicide. Adult society cannot allow itself to be held hostage to these dark forces that are invading the lives of some of our more vulnerable offspring. And sexual grooming posing as ‘support’ in this context should be a legally punishable offence. If we do not get tough with this, it will just get tougher with us. The reproductive centre has to be prepared to defend itself against those who would undo it and lay waste its boundaries.

Films like ‘Butterfly’ are very powerful propaganda with enormous capacity to influence children and their parents. It was thus in Nazi Germany when Joseph Goebbels brought out his most successful ever film ‘The Jew Suss’, that was so popular in 1940, it won the Venice Golden Lion award for best film. It was a great story, with a very dramatic ending and the punters loved it. It also shaped public attitude in ways that his less subtle and more obvious efforts at promoting anti-Semitism never did. (If you can tolerate watching a Nazi era regime anti-Semitic film, you can see it online, but do not confuse it with the very different Jew sympathetic 1934 English production.)

Goebbels’ private sector descendants have learned that lesson well. ‘Butterfly’ is a testament to that. And if we are to have any hope of pushing back against this insidious enemy within, we are going to have to re-assess the whole suite of measures/trends/forces that have been conditioning us over three generations now.

The transgen agenda is the apotheosis of many stages of deregulatory unpicking of anything that gets in the way of desire and satiating it. The transgens have an enormous momentum behind them. To slow down, halt and roll that back means systematic refocusing on the fundamentals of what it means to be a man and woman, husband and wife, father and mother, and consciously re-regulate our social system in favour of the collective rather than the individual, so that we can rebuild our broken reproductive centre/commons and kick out opportunist interlopers who have no business there.

Adult society has an obligation to consistently and concretely model and mentor to its children how their archetypal sex personas are mediated by their sexual-political gender roles, and how these are acted out over a generational cycle by morally coherent life creation partners, so that the children can reliably carry that on into the next generation, and minimize as far as possible the production of off message squibs.

The only large scale re-regulatory agenda now extant beyond a wholesale return to the original patriarchy is the feminist one. This is a good bet because the first societies to embrace the feminist agenda and fully utilize the substantial contribution to the common weal that woman are capable of in all areas of human endeavour, will win in the coming conflicts, as modern times start to disaggregate. And I do not mean that just in a political-military-industrial sense, but also the strong binding solidarity structures and behaviours necessary to survive as coherent communities and lock in secure and satisfying social outcomes through very difficult times.

If there has been one good thing to come out of the latter years of the modern period, feminism maybe its greatest legacy.

I think women will be the outstanding fighters against a system that has put us in our current laissez-faire predicament of cumulative misgovernance, where we can no longer defend our children from any existential plague that happens to be floating past. A feminist revolution in the means of social reproduction might save our collective sexual-political hides from the damage caused by protracted social deregulation and privatization within both our economic and social realms.

The re-allocation of social/economic resources necessary to accomplish that will only be possible if we start to move out of the consumer economy, concentrate on a much smaller suite of products and services, even as we expand environmental defence and restitution industries, and focus much more energy, time and resources on rebuilding social and existential wealth.

Half our net worth is to be found in that wealth, which for the moment has been all but cancelled by protracted economic and cultural indulgence, leaving us vulnerable, desecured and unstable in the conduct of our affairs. We are as much social/existential bankrupts as ecological ones. And to fix that is going to be as tough as it gets, even with an antagonist agenda as obviously a heavily puffed and fluffed up sham as that of the transgen lobby.

Bring it on …

Christopher Nagle has been writing for the last 20 years as an essayist, poet and polemicist. The twin tower attacks propelled him from being a liberal/Marxist critic of capital to a broader critic of modern thinking, myth-making and practice across the board, which has culminated in his collection of essays, ‘The Secular Fundamentalist’ ( http://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/2064958-The-Secular-Fundamentalist )

Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]


  1. Rob Halton

    February 5, 2019 at 11:39 am

    Christoper, a well constructed article thanks for your bravery with descriptions as such for going outside the general human comfort zone!

    I cannot face these misfits as I dont believe that they should impose their self will on surgeons to change “multilate” their bodies when the world is crying out for public hospital operations from persons who deserve better to correct their medical conditions.

    They should never impose their traits on womens rights, absolutely no way. They decide that awkward lifestyle then it is they who are responsible for themselves alone.

    I too voted for gay marriage with some reluctance at the time but not for extreme behavior displayed by a rising trend of transgender persons trying to make life awkward for society in general.

    Now Butterfly has passed we can get back to enjoying watching the marriage dramas on Marriage at First Sight being the only Reality TV program that is worth viewing!

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 5, 2019 at 4:22 pm

      Rob, I did not vote for same sex marriage but actively campaigned against it. And I did so for reasons which are almost identical to the ones I am running here, ie, arguments about indulgence, deregulation and privatisation leading to a society without a centre (other than the totalitarian power of publicrelationsmarketspeak) or boundaries or anything much in between except having any fantasy you want and now, where anything goes and anything does.

      The major difference now is that the ‘right’ to ‘sexual equality’ for a minority has run straight into the absolutely inimical demands for the rights of half the population, our womenfolk.

      Most of the deregulatory unpicking of our social infrastructure has never had an immediately obvious and major loser like this time. All the less salubrious ‘liberating’ impacts have been inter-generational, deniable and most important of all, so entrenched into the marketed reality they avoid the radar altogether.

      The results of the same sex marriage campaign and the legitimisation of off message sexuality will be subtle, cumulative and an evolving ‘new normal’ until twenty years down track metrosexuality becomes so ‘normalised’ that everyone is into it, and completely lost track of what they are really here for as human beings as ‘lifestyle’ trumps ‘life’ in the same way Trump’s hair trumps state policy.

      And that will be happening just as Indulgence Capitalism and the consumer society it has spawned is busy falling apart and the punters are being forced for the first time in 80 years to pull their heads out of the consumer trough, and realistically see their shockingly degraded brave new world for the first time .. looking a bit like the eviscerated natural environment.

      In the meantime, when real nasties eventually start to appear out of what is still left of our social infrastructure sufficiently threateningly, they are treated in isolation and out of reach of the politically compromising context of fundamental causes, allowing immediate proximate agencies to take all the blame. Loss of social and moral boundaries, the encouragement of disinhibition and the failure to socialise children, and particularly males, has a very nasty underbelly. But we can pin it all on the churches, low levels of prison staff, a drowning-child welfare system or dead racist paternalists in neo Stalinist show trials (Royal Commissions) that keep the regime system of ‘disgovernance’ (deregulation) intact, on course, unquestioned .. and relentlessly continuing to take down anything that gets in the way of narcissistic adolescent fantasies and the sacred right to realise them, now.

      The transgender lobby, and particularly the male to female crew, have just been terribly unlucky to get exposed. They ought to have gone under the radar on the coattails of the LGBwhatever campaign. Nobody was supposed to be asking the awkward obvious questions about identity politics, because usually by the end of a well run and funded PR/marketspeak blitz, opposition has been silenced and delegitimised. That is how the system is supposed to work, and usually does.

      Using the Nordic model for prostitution suppression, my feminist comrades have been quietly trying to prevent a deregulated (that word again) sex trade from going the same way as the gambling ‘industry’ and delivering us ‘liberated’ sex service ads that really up the status of women as ‘normal’ industrial sex workers every five minutes on peak viewing times. The comrades were busy getting themselves marginalised on this one in the usual way that Indulgence Capitalism does to its unwanteds when they saw the transgender lobby coming, with its awful agenda, terrible potential for women, its enormous global implications .. and above all, immediate and dramatic impacts for 50% of the population.

      No one saw this coming. And neither did I. And like my feminist comrades who are used to being ignored, so was I. ‘Indulgence Capitalism’ seemed such an arcane throwback to somewhere in the 1970s. When asked to give the comrades a hand on transgenderism I was a bit ho-hum about another foray into obscurity and the usual blowback sprays and dismissives by the current ideological ascendency.

      And ‘the system’ didn’t see this coming either. Such a revealing mistake doesn’t happen too often. The reality continuum is usually seamless. What is different this time is not the wretched transgens, so much as the shock of recognition of how the system assembles itself and works. Transgen lobby is a small but emblematic segment of how that system works and the poor bastards have found themselves like some unfortunate WW II night bomber over Germany in an interlock of searchlights that enable the gunners below to take an accurate bead on it.

      The shock of recognition isn’t that ‘Butterfly’ is a classic propaganda entertainment, or that the transgen agenda is a terrible piece of work, but the recognition of the model of how the reality matrix is constructed, manipulated and sewn into the minds of the punters in the latter days of Indulgence Capitalism.

      And once that genie is out of the bottle, it is very difficult to get it back in again.

      • rainsinger

        February 5, 2019 at 8:11 pm

        I abstained from “voting” on same-sex marriage – partly because it wasn’t a “vote”, it was participation in an ABS Survey, and I have to put enough personal info in the Census. I didn’t trust the bastards. That bar-code on each form was a personal identifier tag. I also thought it took up too much oxygen in the media – what was the government doing behind our backs to Medicare, education, welfare etc while we were all supposed to be doing our small-liberal duty on SSM?

        Besides it was optional – Aussies do enough voting that is mandatory, and being able to ‘opt out’ for the first time suited me fine. Lastly, I don’t support marriage for anybody.

      • Wining Pom

        February 5, 2019 at 8:14 pm

        ‘A society without a centre’ you say Christopher.

        I would think that the centre of society would be nice if it was respect for others, and what they were, instead of criticising those who are different to you.

        The world is not about to end because some people are gay or transgender, and if you think that humans were created to be all the same, well, you really do not understand life. And by life I mean biology, evolution, genetic drift, mutations …

        We are special because we evolved very nicely, not because we were designed.

  2. Sally Anne O'Wheel

    February 4, 2019 at 11:38 pm

    I loved your article, Christopher. I had to read it twice and I had to look up the meaning of quite a few words the second time around. When I first read it, I thought, this is so hard, but so interesting. I am sure it has a golden truth that I just can’t quite grasp. So I returned and looked up the hard words. Some of the words didn’t come up, so I think you might have made them up. We know Shakespeare did that, so there’s precedence.

    Second go, I got it. I’d have to read it a few more times to be able to tell someone else what you said.

    I didn’t watch Butterfly. When I saw the promos of a little child putting on make up, and being so focused on his appearance, I couldn’t stand it.

    Indulgence Capitalism. Yes.

    I found myself having difficulty this week with the expression ‘the wrong body’. How can a person have the ‘wrong’ body? And how can parents and medicos collude with that self-loathing non self-accepting belief?

    And I loved what you said about ‘gender studies’ being akin to eugenics.

    Thank you.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 5, 2019 at 6:43 pm

      I am a poor Asperger communicator and I have made your life reading this more difficult than it should be. But ‘the shock of recognition’ I referred to in my conversation with Rob Halton has come to you notwithstanding all the obstacles to understanding that I have put in your way.

      You have seen through the complex layers of opaque conditioning that obscured your sight. The prism of the Indulgence Capitalism construct has brought into focus how social phenomenon assemble and roll themselves out inside the totalitarian marketed matrix of a managed consciousness that normally has little idea of what is being done to it.

      The defeated socialists of the later twentieth century talked about ‘false consciousness’, but just could not put their finger on it. The transformation of capitalism from an economy based on needs and wants into one of indulgent fantasy completely bypassed the recognition software of its populations .. and colonised them, just like the jewel wasp does.

      Nothing about the system is rational, because what it operates off are fantasies and manipulating them into what the Philosopher Herbert Marcuse called rational irrationality. Once one ‘gets’ that in a concrete way inside a specific example of the genre, like the transgender propaganda assault on consciousness, one starts to ‘see’ what an elaborate pile of gobbledygook it really is. And much more importantly, you start to see a whole city of high rise gobbledygook, and that you are in it, and are one of its subjects. That won’t get you out of the place, but for the first time you start to look for escape routes.

      As I say in the introduction to my work, ‘The Secular Fundamentalist’ (https://www.writing.com/main/books/item_id/2064958-The-Secular-Fundamentalist), this (Golden) Gulag (a reference to Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s story of the Soviet concentration camp system) is not an autocracy. It is self-regulating. There are no guards or fences. The prisoners cannot bring themselves to leave. They have not been arrested or deported there. They have been driven in by proudly sponsored visions of paradise.

      • Sally O'Wheel

        February 5, 2019 at 10:24 pm

        Well, the concepts are complex and there is no simple way to write about it. I appreciate that. Having to stretch my brain is no hardship and it’s worth doing. So don’t be so apologetic.

        I look forward to reading more of your work, Christopher.

        • Kate

          February 6, 2019 at 11:21 am

          I disagree. In my opinion he may benefit from a clinical psychologist who would help him convert his mind-speak into something that most people could easily understand.

          To me, it does flow and it is connected, but in general I would describe his style as serial tautology.

          • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

            February 6, 2019 at 6:47 pm

            Ho ho ho! A nice little backhander there, Kate.

            Your emotional calligraphy is almost perfect – except for the odd drip of venom …

  3. Rob Halton

    February 4, 2019 at 10:25 am

    The ABC program “Butterfly” is a real shocker the wife and I watched it very closely and found it to be what I suppose is a real life enactment of what can actually happen to a young person who is determined at all costs including breaking up family and suicide to transpose gender!

    This is serious stuff, all I can say thank god that any families that I know closely are not condemned to the sufferings and complications of this type of lifestyle.

    I realise my comment may not suit modern social advocates but I make no apology, I simply cant handle the confusion that it creates even by opening up into society!

    The less said the better!

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 4, 2019 at 11:34 am

      It is a successor product to Goebbels’ ‘Jew Suss’. It capitalises on a systematic and protracted deregulation of the social system that has destabilised and all but destroyed its infrastructure, thereby leaving a welter of dysfunctional and desecured behaviour in its wake that becomes a devil’s playground for any opportunistic pathalogue who happens to be floating past.

      Unfortunately the ‘less said the better’ path is no longer viable when the gender dysphoria problem becomes ideologically sanctified and deliberately leveraged into the reproductive centre by a chorus of song-and-dance acts committed to the equivalent of convincing those who think they are Napoleon that they are the real deal.

      And if we do not robustly confront and oppose this baloney resolutely, it will pile up on us to the point where we won’t have any room left to breath so much as a whisper of objection.

  4. Russell

    February 4, 2019 at 8:18 am

    I don’t need to discuss anything. I see the cause. I state the simple solution.

    There’s no need to discuss that diabetics should NEVER eat the poison – sugar. It’s black and white, so it’s also no different to problems caused by foods which cause hormone/identity problems.

    It’s a recent phenomena, and so is the world’s food problem. You are what you eat.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 4, 2019 at 11:36 am

      Russell, I would really appreciate some feedback indicating that you had actually read the article.

  5. Frances Widdowson

    February 4, 2019 at 6:45 am

    Dear Mr. Nagle:

    This article provides one of the most interesting examinations of the “trans” phenomenon that I have read. I am a professor at a university in Canada (Mount Royal University) and we are going to be discussing the question “Does trans activism negatively impact women’s rights?” in March. As far as I know, this will be the first time this question has been analysed at a Canadian university. Your arguments have given me a great deal to think about.

    One of the biggest problems has been the fact that asking questions about this subject is taboo. The increasing influence of Politically Correct Totalitarianism has meant that people just say things like “trans rights are human rights”, and everyone is expected to agree. If you wonder how this could be the case, as not all human beings have trans rights, it is implied that you are immoral and “transphobic”. Being charged with “hate speech” is also a possibility. More deviously, postmodern relativism also is deployed to muddy the waters and make the contradictions go away.

    I hadn’t thought about the trans lobby in the context of “Indulgent Capitalism” before. I think that it is likely true that the astonishing growth of trans identification is linked to this. There seems to be a political vacuum in the secular world due to the disappearance of historical and material thought, and its replacement with postmodern identity politics. As a result, we have no way to provide a critique of the unsustainability of capitalism and propose an alternative that offers a better future for humanity. We don’t want to go back to patriarchal and religious dictates, or accept the inhumanity of capitalist exploitation and environmental destruction, but it is clear that we cannot survive without socially determined boundaries. Attempts to try to discuss what these boundaries should be are being destroyed by Indulgent Capitalism.


    Frances Widdowson

  6. rainsinger

    February 3, 2019 at 9:57 pm

    Indulgence Capitalism! Yes! A long time ago now, in the late 90s, I read an article that coined the current era as the “Super-Industrial Revolution”, or the 2nd Industrial Revolution, and pinpointed its official beginning at the fall of the Berlin wall in 1989 .. 200 years from the French Revolution of 1789 which is often used as the historical point marking the first Industrial Revolution.

    Anyway, as to your article, I am very impressed with your analysis. It is impossible to change one’s sex, and reinforcing such a delusion for social courtesy, good manners or for politeness’ sake is bad enough, but to enshrine it in civil law?
    Would we reinforce the delusions of an anorexic that they are “too fat”?

    I am also surprised that this has been published using language that puts “Butterfly” up with major award-winning German anti-semitic propaganda films of the war years. I too, will be sharing widely, but I doubt the message is likely to get very far.

    There are a few points I might quibble with, but overall they are too minor, and they don’t detract from your underlying thesis. The only criticism I can make is that the article is too long, and I kept having this almost uncontrollable desire to start editing for brevity and clarity.

    • Kate

      February 3, 2019 at 11:12 pm

      Some people on the autism spectrum (Asperger) can be prone to verbosity.

      • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

        February 4, 2019 at 12:46 pm

        That is entirely true, Kate. Mia culpa. And I am sure that is why you haven’t read it. And you are not the only person to have said so.

        There is however another aspect to this. Most of the analysis is novel. I cannot assume that most of my readers are familiar with terms like ‘Indulgence Capitalism’. More, almost nobody is aware of how the larger mechanisms of Indulgence Capitalism work, or the pressures, conditioning agents and consciousness shaping/alteration they bring to bear.

        The characters in the film ‘Butterfly’ have absolutely no idea as to the forces operating around them, or why they are getting so much traction, and why the supposedly responsible adults are such a bunch of mystified and entirely reactive looozzzers to something that seems to just erupt into their home, apparently out of nowhere.

        And neither do the audiences …

        Modern latter day privatised, and mostly submerged totalitarianism, trades on Orwellian reversals of meaning such that freedom becomes slavery .. spending is saving and so on. And explaining that is not easy. If it were, we would all know about it and wouldn’t be having this conversation.

        The film ‘The Matrix’ was a wonderful metaphor for how modern societies work, and untangling it is a bit of a journey that demands quite a bit of head space.


    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 4, 2019 at 1:20 pm

      Thanks rainsinger, for your positive critical input.

      Besides the work of the public relations and marketing genius Edward Bernays, Joseph Goebbels is the spiritual father of modern propaganda, ie, publicrelationsmarketspeak. His film, ‘Jew Suss’ embodies the notion of combining good entertainment with a powerful ideological perspective informing it. The audience ‘buys’ the entertainment and unconsciously imbibes the propaganda as it does so.

      It is powerful stuff. It works, and it is widely employed across all the theatres of operation of an ‘Indulgence Capitalism’ that I noticed was starting to roll out in the 1960s when I was a student.

      ‘Butterfly’ is not unique in this. We are drowning in consciousness management matrices to the extent that the whole culture has developed ‘gills’ so that it can ‘breathe it’ naturally, without ‘the fish’ knowing anything about what has happened to them.

      If the fish analogy doesn’t do it for you, the jewel wasp one should.

      And yes, I do need editing. The essays need to be shorter and I think, and as time goes on, and as my audiences start to get familiar with the concepts I am trying to explicate and more people start to publicly discuss them, that will become a lot easier.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 4, 2019 at 10:41 pm

      I do need an editor, and while I am not offering money for service, if anyone feels moved to do some for me, I will gratefully acknowledge their work.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 5, 2019 at 6:47 pm

      My dear Rainsinger. I need an editor. Be my guest. Let your uncontrollable desire off its lead …

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 5, 2019 at 6:53 pm

      Rainsinger … ‘Butterfly’, in my view, is propaganda packaged as entertainment. Joseph Goebbels was the father of the genre.

      • rainsinger

        February 5, 2019 at 8:38 pm

        Hahaha, Christopher.

        I genuinely wish I had the time. But what made me revisit is that I have just finished seeing the Belgian film “Girl” (2018) which garnered awards at the recent Cannes and a few other artsy-fartsy film-fests. I don’t know if it has, or will, have a release in Australia, but being about a boy on the “journey” to becoming not just a girl, but a ballerina who can dance en pointe I was struck by the similarity with Butterfly, in terms of the underlying message, but with different technique.

        A much more stylistic and artistic cinematic production of course, aimed at the Intelligentsia, but unlike Butterfly includes some not-so-nice scenes of child nudity (bordering on artistic pedophilia), graphic self-harm, and emotionally manipulative psychic trauma of the boy (and only the boy) despite a supportive family and school life. One of the messages being that the boy should have been able to trans with bottom-surgery and cross-sex hormones much earlier. Another message of adolescent coming-of-age angst .. you may not always get what you want (ie, be a ballerina) but you can get what you “need” (ie change your “gender identity”) (With apologies to the Stones.)

        By the end I figured “Girl” was the upper-middle class version of “Butterfly” which was aimed at the working-class plebs.

        And I wanted to ask you to do one of your amazing reviews of ‘Girl’ .. if you ever get the chance.

        But for Orwellian Newspeak – check the Wikipedia entry for this film, and some of the artsy-fartsy Review sites. It would be hilarious .. if it wasn’t so serious.

        • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

          February 6, 2019 at 7:26 pm

          I’ll try to look into it, but I am a bit pressed for time at the moment. But thanks for the prompt.

  7. spikeyriddochspikey

    February 3, 2019 at 7:11 pm

    I ‘hafta’ say. Christopher’s ‘work’ has improved.
    His early attempts were a great deal more sexual-identity phobic.
    End of the world, and all.
    Let’s invent an acronym to describe those with empathy.
    That Christopher has no time for.
    But will drag up doomsday scenarios.
    Involving stuff that’s really none of his business.
    Every day of the week.

    I suspect because he is weak.
    And paid for opinion.

    • Isla MacGregor

      February 3, 2019 at 11:00 pm


      ” .. found exceedingly rich, white men with enormous cultural influence are funding the transgender lobby and various transgender organizations. These include but are not limited to Jennifer Pritzker (a male who identifies as transgender); George Soros; Martine Rothblatt (a male who identifies as transgender and transhumanist); Tim Gill (a gay man); Drummond Pike; Warren and Peter Buffett; Jon Stryker (a gay man); Mark Bonham (a gay man); and Ric Weiland (a deceased gay man whose philanthropy is still LGBT-oriented). Most of these billionaires fund the transgender lobby and organizations through their own organizations, including corporations.

      “Separating transgender issues from LGBT infrastructure is not an easy task. All the wealthiest donors have been funding LGB institutions before they became LGBT-oriented, and only in some instances are monies earmarked specifically for transgender issues. Some of these billionaires fund the LGBT through their myriad companies, multiplying their contributions many times over in ways that are also difficult to track.”

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 3, 2019 at 11:11 pm

      Spikey, accusing me of being a paid mercenary without the slightest evidence for it is defamatory, baseless and malicious.

      You have no basis whatever for even suspecting weakness in me. If you have found something of that nature, I will be fascinated to know what exactly you are talking about that could possibly give credence to such a belief, other than your malice.

      How exactly do you determine whether something ‘is my (or anyone else’s) business’ or not? Enlighten me. Are you such an inbred provincial that you think no fellow Australian beyond the shores of Tassie has the right to comment on what is going on there? Seriously? By that token, what is going on in the mainland is none of yours.

      I have some reason, along with a lot of other people, to suppose that the modern world may be reaching its use-by date, or at least going through a major regime change that will force us all to not only profoundly change the way we live, but to live at much more hazard than we do now. That is not ‘a doomsday scenario’ so much as a realistic assessment of our situation, and to try and suggest that it isn’t is on about the same level of denialism as to be found down at the fossil fuel lobby outlets. You are not a fan of the IPA are you? Surely not …

      Empathy is not an essential ingredient of life, especially if it is constantly confused with and conflated into indulgence by people who cannot tell the difference between an uncritical and sloppy soft touch and genuine fellowship .. people like you Spikey.

      As I have repeatedly argued both in this essay and elsewhere, gratuitously accusing people of a phobia can be a baseless accusation and a lame attempt to deny a legitimate, principled and argued position. Calling bluff and calling out baloney and pretentious bullshit put out by powerful lobbies really isn’t for the faint hearted, or those fearful of the poor opinion and hostility of others. If you have some reason to believe I carry secret phobias around that even my wife doesn’t know about, I would be absolutely fascinated to know what your evidence for that looks like. But this is just another little smear, isn’t it Spikey?

      As it turns out, this essay is picking out just one particularly noxious example of the bogus sexistentialism and spurious and grossly inflated/distorted ideological claims that swirl around sexual identity across the board .. or hadn’t you noticed?

      And lastly, I note that you thought this ‘work’ is an ‘improvement’. Frankly Spikey, I do not think you would know one way or the other what it was. You have done nothing to demonstrate the slightest grasp of anything I have said .. other than what is necessary to try and troll me.

      • spikeyriddochspikey

        February 4, 2019 at 7:42 am

        Actually mate, you present yourself as more than a textbook homophobic.

        You have tried to argue that your irrational fear of others’ sexuality is fair enough. You created an acronym to describe less homophobic people. It’s hardly baseless when you frequently display the symptoms.

        And now the ‘non-essential’ empathy is Indulgence.

        Unfortunately Christopher, if you want to see the world from anything other than your own narrow and distorted projection, then the practicing of empathy is part and parcel.

        However if you’re happy just lecturing others on what their problem is (from your point of view) then clearly it is non-essential.

        • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

          February 4, 2019 at 1:38 pm

          Spikey, Homophobia is a legitimate term in the hands of trained therapists who scientifically apply a range of criteria, tests and analyses before making a diagnosis. In the hands of guys like you it is just a textbook ideological smear and bluff that avoids the need for you to justify yourself or address the argument and genuine debate.

          ‘Homophobia’ has become a pseudo-scientific tool-in-trade for trolls and lobby pimps who know as much about psychiatry as my hat. Just because it sits on my head doesn’t mean it has clue what is going inside my head.

          ‘Text book’? No. You are just into debate avoidance using a cheap and nasty put-down instead. And like most trolls, I doubt very much whether you have the intellectual ability to read a psychiatric text book, let alone interpret or apply its science correctly.

          • spikey

            February 5, 2019 at 9:01 pm

            Christopher, I find utterly fascinating the overwhelming support you appear to have from many people who would appear at first glimpse to be gender axe grinding.

            I honestly believe your style of writing has become literate, with less outrageous claims based on a vivid imagination. I’m also glad you’ve learned not to continually tell people what the problem with them is.

            The problem with me is this: I wonder why such a passionate literary fundamental secularist isn’t busy spreading his gospel anywhere other than via e-book and TT.

            Please point me towards the local ‘mainland’ groups you are supporting, and the many other mainland forums you must surely engage in to preach Indulgence Capitalism and homophobia, or please do tell why it’s TT which is blessed with your fascinating perspectives.

        • Slade L.

          February 4, 2019 at 7:05 pm

          No. Homophobic is the transgen that rejects physical based biological sex which renders homosexuality, female and male, impossible.

          Many gays and lesbians are currently in fear of their homosexuality being legally erased when biological sex is redefined as gender identity.

          • Kate

            February 4, 2019 at 11:17 pm

            I can see the headlines …

            It’s a miracle! They found a cure for my homosexuality! Norm is actually a girl!

            (The New Age norm)

    • Isla MacGregor

      February 3, 2019 at 11:17 pm

      This issue is everyone’s business. Yours is a typically paranoid response. So who is funding the transgender agenda?


  8. mattosborne222 (USA)

    February 3, 2019 at 4:08 pm

    This is great stuff!

    I was momentarily confused by the references to “punters” because in America that word means guys kicking American footballs around, but other than that, this is possibly my favorite essay on the topic so far this year.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 3, 2019 at 5:18 pm

      ‘Punter’ is an an Australian colloquialism for those who bet on horse races, but which has a more general application to what you might call, stateside, ‘the average Joe’.

      Thank you for your interest and your positive feedback.

  9. Lola Moth

    February 3, 2019 at 2:32 pm

    Thank you for this thoughtful analysis. I understand your argument, and while I don’t agree with it all there is much that I do agree with, and you have articulated it in a way that I never could.

    “People who see their sexuality as central to them do so either because they are adolescents and can’t help it, and/or there isn’t much else going for them … and/or they have a sexual political axe to grind.”

    That sentence gets to the heart of the issue for me. There is more to us than that part we are unhappy or confused about. Some people become their disability, their illness, or their sexuality to the point that there is nothing else in their lives.

    Such a narrow focus can only make us less open to other ideas, and trying to force others to see only that part of us strips us of any other value.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 3, 2019 at 6:47 pm

      Thank you Lola, for your positive response to something that you do not wholly agree with.

      I think it is critically important at this time to be prepared to cross over the conventional ideological boundaries, have debates that are not cliche shoot outs at two paces, and realise that all of us have got sectional pieces of the puzzle which when sewn together make for powerful new leverages in an ideological milieu that is right now floundering in ageing terminology and rusted-on thinking.

      ‘Conservative’ v ‘Radical’, ‘progressive’ v ‘traditionalist’, ‘liberal’ v ‘authoritarian’, ‘fundamentalist’ v ‘enlightened’ and ‘right wing’ (bourgeois) and ‘left wing’ (socialist) are largely obsolete terms.

      I describe myself as ‘fundamentalist’ (going back to pre-indulgence economic and social basics);’radical’ (prepared to entertain large change vectors);’retraditionalist’ (the establishment of a feminist regulatory framework as a new tradition to rebuild our ruined social/economic infrastructure and governance templates, and the establishment of a re-regulatory economic framework for a new tradition of ‘Capitalism Lite’ to rebuild our ruined ecological infrastructure); and ‘conservative’ (a defensively entrenched posture to re-establish disciplined, socially derived and existentially grounded rather than market rules-based conduct that will be sustainable under heavy pressure for the very long term.)

      As a pro-feminist, I see the role of women not only as a vital resource that will deliver critical strategic advantage, but as a temperamental baffle against the inevitable warfare and violence that is bound to be the signature of a coming period of ancient regime (old order) breakup and an inevitably bitter and brutal following struggle between old and new players, as to how a new order will ultimately play out, and who will end up in the ascendency.

      I think the coming period is going to be one of new alliance bridge-building as we struggle to get out of the indulgent, deregulatory and privatised cul-de-sac that we have built ourselves into over the last 50-70 years. This cul-de-sac is not just a perverse monopoly of the corporate free marketeers. It is a much larger regime trajectory, most of which operates below the conventional social radar. Its relative invisibility is one of its most powerful and totalitarian features that turns much of its existing rhetoric into an Orwellian opposite.

      I think the transgender issue has the potential to facilitate a reaching out to people we don’t normally talk to as we feel our way to new propositions that have the potential to save some of our collective hide as the old order comes unstuck.

      We will start to find that some of those who are now regarded as ‘friends’ will become enemies and conversely, some enemies will become friends. The current ‘progressive’ front is becoming unstable and internally contradictory. Those with the imagination and courage to reach out and take risks are the ones who are going to be winners.

      So Lola and fellow pilgrim, we may well be heading for the same place in the city of the imagination. Welcome to this road …

      • Lola Moth

        February 4, 2019 at 3:21 pm

        I have one small criticism that I have brought to your notice before, but I think I need to do so again.

        Not all of us are as educated as you, and most of us use a much simpler vocabulary. I still struggle to understand your meaning and have to re-read every paragraph carefully to make sure I am getting it right.

        You have much to say that should be heard, but it is like you are speaking a foreign language sometimes.

        I don’t expect you to dumb it down just for me, but there are others out there who won’t bother with your work if it is too difficult to read.

        • Kate Bee

          February 4, 2019 at 4:12 pm

          I agree Lola. I have a master’s degree in English but struggled at times with the piece, and had to repeat paragraphs to garner the complete meaning.

          I completely agree with Christopher though, and I am especially interested in his ideas about crossing ‘conventional ideological boundaries.’ This interests me in particular, because as a radical feminist lesbian I am quite the outlier with some of my ideas within my social group which tends to be very black and white in its thinking.

          I have the unfortunate ability to analyse patterns and to envision what will happen on a sociological level in western society in the future.

          “The Empire’s got something worse than whips all right. It’s got obedience. Whips in the soul. They obey anyone who tells them what to do. Freedom just means being told what to do by someone different.”

          • Lola Moth

            February 4, 2019 at 6:13 pm

            Kate, there is nothing I can point to in Christopher’s article that I disagree with, and quite a lot that I totally agree with.

            I suppose I am not sure enough that I understand what he means, which is why I have no definite opinion about certain points he brings up. If Christopher was to write in a different style I would understand more, and possibly agree more with what he has to say.

          • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

            February 4, 2019 at 10:58 pm

            Indulgence capitalism, using public relations market-speak, colonises the reassuring language of liberation by converting it into ‘Doublethink’ (substituting empowering ideas with their opposite by say substituting deregulation and disinhibition for freedom), ‘Fudgethink’ (conceptual conflation, particularly of social and market liberty, and social rights and consumer entitlement), ‘Hollowthink’ (vacuous slogans, keywords, stereotypes, aphorisms, clichés, euphemisms and dysphemisms) and ‘Childthink’ (adolescent consciousness, exceptionalism, narcissism and egoism-without-boundaries).

            I am truly sorry to have taxed you with my use of language. Simplification is a real struggle for me. I will try to do better.

        • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

          February 4, 2019 at 10:35 pm

          Mia culpa, Lola.

          I will go back over the article tomorrow and either change word usage or provide a definition in brackets.

  10. Isla MacGregor

    February 3, 2019 at 11:31 am

    This is a most thorough analysis of the context of the transgender debate I have read so far, a debate trans rights activists want to censor. While I do not agree with all you have said Christopher, this is a great contribution, and this resonates for me especially …

    “Sex and sexuality are not unimportant, but they are the least important part of broadly socialised richly layered, robustly developed and morally coherent adult characters who are capable of grounding and contextualising themselves across a diverse range of life roles and objectives.”

    Unfortunately ‘contextualising’ for the trans lobby seems to be occurring amidst the cacophony of their chanting “There should be no debate”.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 3, 2019 at 8:12 pm

      Isla, I suspect that debate is not at the top of their agenda because once one pulls out the cliche-encrusted keywords and slogans there isn’t much left of their deregulatory regime ideology except their little mates, Tuff, Bluff and Bluster. And when that doesn’t work, then there is ‘put-upon-poor-thingism’ and lack of empathy. If all else fails, the tranniephobes must be in league with dark forces that have escaped from under a rock in an ideological version of Mordor .. none of which is debate so much as badmouthing.

  11. joannapink

    February 3, 2019 at 11:27 am

    I’m sharing this article widely, Christopher!

  12. joannapink

    February 3, 2019 at 11:03 am

    This is a powerful analysis, Christopher.

    It is really time that people become aware of the manipulations. Our minds are under attack, but instead of gaining tools to understand what is happening, we are normalising disorder of minds, enslaving ourselves deeper into dependency.

    It is extremely sad to watch. Thankyou for your writing!

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 3, 2019 at 8:29 pm

      Joanna, if you ever need a quick ideological aide memoire to remind you of what you are up against, think of the jewel wasp. I do that everyday. The distressing scenario it represents on a mass scale gets me up in the morning and keeps me focused.

      Thank you for your interest and commitment to combat the overwhelming forces of colonisation that wasp symbolises.

      We are all to some extent victims, and the only antidote is constant self reminder about what it is that we are fighting.

      Autonomy is a constant struggle against ideological groupthink.
      Good luck, pilgrim.

  13. Russell

    February 3, 2019 at 7:49 am

    You can put this ‘butterfly effect’ down to the hormone-laden, soy and chemically poisoned foods dominating the supermarket shelves.

    • Christopher Eastman-Nagle

      February 3, 2019 at 1:57 pm

      It is true Russell, that as we move into a post-modern period and are forced to prioritise sustainable food production and land conservation, we will find out the extent of the damage to our food and its sources by current practices.

      As we move towards organic growing and food processing out of factories and back into domestic processing, we may well find that a lot of ailment patterns that currently exist will start to disappear.

      But equally, we may also find ourselves saddled with a whole lot of new ‘ailments’ by the circumstances of such changes.

      Food production is as much emblematic of the lack of sustainability of late Indulgence Capitalism as anything else.

      However, having said that, this article has provided a very comprehensive social political analysis that clearly you have not even begun to address.

      While not suggesting that your remark is ‘wrong’, I think it is only tangentially relevant to the context of the article, and I would appreciate it if you responded with that in mind. Then we can have a meaningful discussion about it.

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