Archive | April 2019

Living with Dupuytren’s contracture

I live with Dupuytren’s contracture.

It’s a disease that typically affects people a decade older than I am, and I showed signs of it almost 20 years ago.

I’m 40. I shouldn’t even show signs of it until a decade from now. So you’ll understand how shit it is to show signs of this disease 30 years before you should – and especially when it’s so advanced that your entire palm and all the tendons connecting all your fingers are affected.

All my fingers.

Not just the middle finger on one hand that many people with this condition exhibit in their 50s or older.

ALL my fingers.

ALL the tendons on my palm connecting all of my fingers.

On both hands.

The only saving grace is that it advances quicker when you suffer from it at a later age, so I have more time to live with the symptoms than if it happened when I was older.

But it’s more widespread, and it will hit me at a younger age than most people who live with it.

Instead of a decade or so in my 50s, I get 2-3 decades starting from my 20s.

Not a great trade.

I found a new lump on the palm of my hand today. Every time that happens, I’m reminded of what awaits me not long from now.

My life has been defined by what I do with my hands.

I loved playing the guitar, and I’m a carpenter and a manual labourer.

Every new lump is a foreshadowing that soon my hands will be useless.

They will close up like my little finger did, and I won’t be able to do what I love and what I have to in order to have a job.

It fucking sucks.

It sucks worse to know that this started a good 20-30 years before it should.

Even today, I have difficulty doing certain things with my hands.

Occasionally I won’t be able to hand over coins or pens to people because my hands will seize up in an embarrassing way, because they won’t know why I’m stood there unable to just give them what’s in my hand.

Even 15 years ago, I would have to stop playing a gig half way through a song because my hand would contort itself painfully in a way that meant I couldn’t play, and I’d have to physically break my hand apart.

I found another lump today.

It sucks.

But I am what I do with my hands.

I love what I do and make with my hands.

I don’t know how long I have left to do it – maybe a decade if I’m lucky. Two if the gods shit gold on my soul. Possibly less.

I just want to do as much with them before I can’t.

Every new lump I find is a kick in the balls.

Every time I open my palms and find their relaxed position is more enclosed hits me.

But fuck it.

It can win in the end, but it doesn’t get to win now.

Every new lump makes me want to achieve more before it beats me.

Today I found a new lump.

Nothing else matters.

The importance of a theory of mind

My main measure of someone is their theory of mind.

A theory of mind is your ability to accept that whilst you can never know anyone else really exists as another being who thinks and feels and acts of their own accord as you do, they do and you’re not the only “real person” in the universe.

Solipsism is the antithesis of a theory of mind, as is sociopathy – and sociopathy and solipsism are intricately linked.

The greatest evils of humanity are performed by those who reject a theory of mind in some degree or in its whole.

It’s why Nazis could dehumanise people. It’s why the indigenous people of Australia could be denied their humanity – and the indigenous people of America.

A lack of a theory of mind lies behind all the atrocities humanity has ever experienced or meted out against itself.

A theory of mind is a prerequisite for self-depreciation, self-critique, humility and empathy.

Those who pretend these things are weaknesses are always lacking in – and arguing against – a theory of mind.

Their ideologies and the atrocities they seek demand us to reject, in part or in whole, a theory of mind.

That’s why it’s the measure I use to judge others.

Sociopaths and solipsists are boring.

They are easy to figure out, easy to write.

Complex people have a theory of mind.

They are more interesting to live with, more complex to understand.

There’s a reason that all fascist and totalitarian regimes promote sociopathy and try to undermine our theory of mind.

It makes us easier to control, easier to apologise for and partake in atrocities.

Removing you from your theory of mind is the first step any totalitarian ideology demands.

That’s why Orwell’s 1984 was all about reforming the language in such a way as to remove the ability to use nuance and to have any theory of mind.

It’s why the Nazis demanded the dehumanisation of Jewish people, and the rejection of anything they said or did as having motive behind it that equated to motives others would understand and sympathise with.

It’s why conspiracy theories and cults thrive – and how they thrive.

Arguments against them can’t possibly be from free-thinking people who just disagree with you. They must be brainwashed “sheeple”, or worse – “shills”.

You have to eradicate at least some theory of mind, in order to prevent people from questioning the cult or conspiracy theory when they encounter arguments the cult or conspiracy theory fails to answer that may lead people away, by disingenuously claiming that those questions or arguments come not from ordinary people like yourself, but from puppets and puppeteers.

A theory of mind is the only thing that connects our humanity.

That’s why undermining it or completely rejecting it is the first step to totalitarianism, and is the root cause of every atrocity.

Terrorists are terrorists, whether you leader says so or not

Another reminder of who the DUP are:

In 1998 they opposed the good Friday agreement, even when the Unionist terrorists agreed to it.

There are videos freely available showing UVF members being booed out of DUP meetings for just trying to explain why they backed the agreement.

They denounced UVF terrorists who fought for a ceasefire with Republican terrorists.

They are a Presbyterian sect who want to implement a theocracy.

The DUP have always been about destroying Northern Ireland and recreating it in a Presbyterian image.

Whilst they and Sinn Fein are arseholes who politically advocate terrorism to further their agenda, we’re meant to be ok with the DUP because their terrorists are pro-British nationalists, and vilify Sinn Fein because their terrorists advocate pro-Irish nationalism.

When Theresa May lost the Tory majority in Parliament and had to count on the support of the DUP – something that no Tory PM has had to do in years – she emphasised the name of the Tory party as the “Conservative and UNIONIST party”, which no Tory MP of influence has done for a hundred years.

There’s a reason she did that.

It’s to signal to her allies that she doesn’t care about diplomacy and legitimate democracy; to tell everyone else that she’s a patriot even if her actions destroy the country they’re told to love; and to show the DUP and everyone else that she thinks terrorism is ok when it suits her nationalist agenda.

Remember, the UVF killed civilians, just like the IRA (and fuck them both for that alone); but only the political wing of one is acceptably allowed to form a government.

Terrorism is ok…. as long as you kill people the state doesn’t care about 🤬

The fact that the government signs up with the DUP, who denounced the UVF for signing the good Friday agreement against the advice of terrorists they admonished for not going further, should tell everyone who were dealing with.

If you know that and vote Tory, fuck you, you utter cunt.

To be fair and balanced:

The truth is that both groups are terrorist advocates.

They both advocate the murder of civilians in order to further their cause.

But only one group is defined as “terrorist”, whilst the other is sanitised by the label “paramilitary”.

If you’re a paramilitary, you actively use terror to further a political cause.

I’d say that if you back the DUP alliance with the Tories, then you back terrorism. However, it’s worse than that.

If you back the DUP alliance with the Tories, you back a government that even the unionist terrorists disagree with.

And that makes you a terrorist sympathiser – and worse, one who pretends it’s wrong to sympathise with terrorists except in special circumstances.

Now consider why Trump pretends white nationalist terrorism isn’t a threat.

Get it yet?

PC gone mad

“PC gone mad” isn’t ethnic minorities asking for respect or equality.

It isn’t the LGBTQ community asking for their identities to be recognised and educated about.

It isn’t women asking to not be groped or assaulted.

It isn’t physically disabled people asking for accessibility and independence.

It isn’t people with mental health issues asking for awareness and support.

It isn’t people with learning difficulties asking to not be dehumanised and called “stupid”.

It isn’t different religious and cultural groups asking to not be vilified in the media just because they’re different from the mainstream.

It IS white men throwing a hissy-fit because someone called them “white” and claiming it’s a racial slur, when black people don’t call “black” a racial slur, gay people don’t call “gay” a slur, women don’t call “woman” a slur, Muslims don’t call “Muslim” a slur, and nobody calls their identity a slur, except for white [predominantly] men desperate to play the victim card in order to silence people to retain their privilege and supremacy and also undermine other people’s rightful claim for respect in order to carry on being racist shits.

THAT’S PC gone mad – when we pretend it’s wrong to challenge abusers, and let racists complain about how much it hurts them to be called racist, and let Nazis pretend they should just be allowed to advocate for murder and racial supremacy.

PC gone mad is when we allow people like Boris Johnson to complain about legitimate criticism in order to silence it, whilst demanding they should be allowed to refer to Muslim women as “letter boxes” based on how they dress 🤦‍♂️🤬

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