Philosophy, Eugenics & Disability in Alberta and Places North – Dick Sobsey Parts 1 & 2

On October 25, 2008, the What Sorts Network hosted a public symposium to examine, well, philosophy, eugenics, and disability in Alberta and places north.  Four speakers were featured on the panel, Dick Sobsey, Simo Vehmas, Martin Tweedale, and Rob Wilson.  This event was video recorded and over the next month we will highlight these videos on this blog.  Videos will be featured on average twice a week, roughly every Saturday and Wednesday.

To download the full description of the symposium please click here.

We begin this series with the first two parts of the presentation by Dick Sobsey titled “Varieties of Eugenics Experience in the 21st Century.”  This presentation amounts to a summary of various kinds of eugenic motivations, justifications, and practices from the 19th century to today with a good collection of anecdotes and trivia. A transcript of both parts follows the fold.

Part 1

Highlights from part 1 include: shift from religious to scientific view of the world; quality of life; social Darwinism vs. biological capitalism.

Continue reading

Keith Olbermann on California’s Proposition 8

We’ve been under the cone of silence over the many propositions passed as part of the US election season. But this one pretty much speaks for itself (though apologies that I have not found a version of this that is captioned–if anyone knows of one, let me know and I’ll link to that version.)

h/t Feministe

What Sorts of Families?

According to John McCain, “two parent families the traditional family represents.”

A recent Huffington Post article by Edward Stein draws attention to McCain’s cant about wanting to preserve family value–unless, of course, those family values are being instantiated by gay couples fostering or adopting children. Stein highlights McCain’s in-artful refusal to answer straight questions about gay adoption, presumably in an attempt to keep both the religious right and gay Republicans happy.

See for yourself. The video below the fold [no captioning, sorry] shows McCain’s responses to questions posed in an interview with George Stephanopoulos. Continue reading