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Millennial News Site Thinks the CIA Being Run Entirely by Women Is a Progressive Victory

This is not the first time generic "yaaassss slay kween" feminism has been used to obscure an awful person's record.

NowThis, a news website that primarily caters to left-of-center millennials and Gen Z-ers, tweeted this on Wednesday: "The CIA's highest level positions are now all held by women—another stride towards progress." The tweet even included a flexed bicep emoji, a symbol of progress that invokes Rosie the Riveteer. Here it is:

Most of the responses to the tweet involve people dunking on it, and for good reason. The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) being run entirely by women is not another stride toward progress. A stride toward progress would be the CIA shutting down, or at the very least renouncing its past misdeeds: torturing prisoners, spying on American citizens, overthrowing foreign governments, etc., etc.

Yes, current CIA Director Gina Haspel is a woman. She also ran a CIA black site in Thailand and was personally involved in the waterboarding of at least one detainee. When asked about these activities during her confirmation hearings, she was unrepentant. She said, essentially, that she was just following orders.

I'm highlighting this tweet because it speaks to intersectionality's corruption of the modern progressive movement. Intersectionality, of course, is the academic tradition from the late 1980s that stressed group-based oppression: particularly racism and sexism. Over the years, proponents of intersectionality have added other areas of concern: everything from transphobia and homophobia to size-ism and able-ism. It's not that the intersectional thinkers are necessarily wrong—transphobia exists, and it's bad—but rather that a monomaniacal focus on group-based oppression can be naïve. Haspel taking over the CIA, for instance, might be a blow to sexism in some very narrow sense, but it does nothing to remedy the CIA's appalling record on civil liberties, something progressives purport to care about.

This is not the first time generic yaaassss slay kween feminism has been used to obscure Haspel's appalling awfulness: My colleague Scott Shackford made a note of The Advocate's coverage, which commended the CIA director for making "herstory" in a tweet that practically demands a barf emoji response.

Recall that some on the left complained Trump had threatened to drop "the mother of all bombs" on Afghanistan—not because killing yet more people in the war-torn country would be wrong, but because the phrase itself is sexist. This approach should frustrate true progressives. It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them.

Photo Credit: Douglas Christian/ZUMA Press/Newscom

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  • SIV||

    civil liberties,something progressives purport to care about.

    No, not ever.You're confusing a small subset of left-liberals in the mid to late 20th Century with progressives which are something else entirely.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Not true. They care deeply about civil liberties, if you're in the right group.

  • buybuydandavis||

    Civil privileges for the right group.

    It's all about bringing home the goodies to a constituency.

  • Liberty Lover||

    The question is who is the right group, today? It is a lot easier to figure out if you are in the wrong group, and yes, you are.

  • SIV||

    Okay "purport"

  • Pro Libertate||

    How can we ally with people who set a higher value on identity politics than on civil liberties?

  • Ray McKigney||

    Lady parts first. Civil liberties (and rainbows and unicorn farts) will follow.

  • RoyMo||

    What a hateful thing to say! "Lady parts" is a disgusting phrase that excludes transwomen.

  • Radioactive||

    find a trans guy, cut his/her/xer dingus off, glue it to your forehead and identify as a fucking unicorn...case closed

  • Aloysious||

    Abandon our principles?

  • Weygand||

    Evacuate? In our moment of triumph??

  • Ray McKigney||

    Where's the fun in a triumph if you can't evacuate on your enemies?

  • BigT||

    Feminism has devolved into what it purports to resist - sexist oppression.

    Has any other 'ism' or movement ever succeeded in NOT over-shooting it's goal after it's initial success? Civil rights devolved into affirmative action. Disability enablement impresses everyone to build ramps etc and refers to people as 'other-abled'. Trans whatever is giving us xi and xe pronouns.

  • Mr. JD||

    You mean the Left is Orwellian?

  • BigT||

    Human nature pushes to keep doing more of the same, even after the ideal result is reached. Eating. Drinking. Playing. Etc

  • UVaGrad||

    SEND MORE WOMEN TO THE HAGUE

  • Ecoli||

    Just the hags though. Hags for the Hague!

  • SIV||

    The headline set the tone of confusion:

    the CIA Being Run Entirely By Women Is a Progressive Victory

    Yes it is.

  • Weygand||

    "This approach should frustrate true progressives. It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them."

    That is fucking rich.....

  • buybuydandavis||

    "Pleeeeeeeeeze invite us to all the cool parties!"

  • buybuydandavis||

    If "liberals get the bullet too", what do they think libertarians are gonna get?

  • AlmightyJB||

    Just the tip

  • Deconstructed Potato||

    And only for a minute!

  • DD2TT||

    I'm genuinely not getting your point. Are you suggesting that libertarians don't ever want to ally with true progressives?

  • Nardz||

    Not if they value liberty or individualism - the 2 greatest threats to progressivism.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    Libertarians believe that progress happens when a hard working individual invents something useful. Progressives believe that progress is a natural phenomenon that will happen even if they execute, imprison, or excessively tax inventors. When the new inventions do not appear quickly enough, they blame greed and look for greedy people to destroy.

  • Earth Skeptic||

    IMO capital-P Progressives consider progress not at all natural, but something that must be planned by righteous people and executed by large, powerful governments.

  • a ab abc abcd abcde abcdef ahf||

    Spot on. Everything useful comes from government. Everything evil comes from individuals.

  • RoyMo||

    I think that word "True" does a lot of work here. Also should Libertarians ever ally with True Communists? True Monarchists? True Falangists?

    Does the pure expression of the Progressive dream of "Progress" allow any room for what libertarians purport to believe in? If it does not then no libertarians should never ally with them. Otherwise you get the classic Bolshevik United Front that massacres the anarchists and everyone else the first chance it gets.

  • juris imprudent||

    To the contrary, the Red Army did not massacre the Black Army (anarchists) until they had helped defeat the Whites (Orel-Kursk).

  • buybuydandavis||

    "This is not the first time generic "yaaassss slay kween" feminism has been used to obscure an awful person's record."

    Welcome to identity politics. Nothing matters but belonging to the right group.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    Well, that's not always true. I'd vote for Beto for President before I'd vote for Nikki Haley.

    #LibertariansForBeto

  • AlmightyJB||

    He's like John Kennedy and John Kerry had a baby.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Except their baby would be brown, and Bobby O'Rourke is totally white.

  • Mickey Rat||

    A horrific abomination against nature?

  • Ecoli||

    Nikki too brown for OBL.

  • OpenBordersLiberal-tarian||

    It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them.

    On the contrary, intersectionality strengthens the progressive / libertarian alliance. For example, by emphasizing the race of immigrants, we Koch / Reason libertarians can advocate open borders in a way that frames all our opponents as racists and white nationalists.

    Just imagine how much less effective our approach would be if we viewed people simply as individuals rather than as members of oppressor and victim groups. In that case, advocates of "border security" would just be humans on one side of an imaginary line who want other humans to stay on their side, or obtain permission to cross. The anti-immigration people would still be wrong, of course, but it would be difficult to link them to Nazis. But by emphasizing race — by noting that Drumpf and most of his voters are white, and people crossing our southern border tend to be brown — we can compare a border wall to something Hitler would have built. This makes the open borders position much more compelling.

    #AbolishICE
    #NoBanNoWall
    #OpenBorders
    #AntiRacism
    #BlackAndBrownLivesMatter

  • BigT||

    Not as pithy as usual. C-

  • SIV||

    He scored a solid "A" with the Beto/ Nikki Haley comment.

  • Nardz||

    Well distilled.
    A
    And I think Soave agrees at least 90%

  • sharmota4zeb||

    Some open board advocates do use this line of logic to ague against border enforcement, which is ironic, because Hitler was famous for forcing members of a disadvantaged race to cross international borders ... in rail cars.

  • JWatts||

    Hitler was definitely a freedom of movement advocate to the core.

  • AlmightyJB||

    AND YE SHALL KNOW THE TRUTH AND THE TRUTH SHALL MAKE YOU FREE

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    I, for one, look forward to women attaining all positions in front of me, if you know what I mean.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    Realize that one of these women participated in a project that involved shooting electrical currents through men's nipples and genitals. I mean, if they shot the electric currents through the men's brains, it would be a standard medical procedure, but nipples and male genitals are considered more private than the contents of one's skull.

  • StackOfCoins||

    "It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them."

    You would have to be a fool to think you can form an alliance with snakes and wolves.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Especially when they blame all of the worlds problems on libertarians.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    I, for one, look forward to women attaining all positions in front of me, if you know what I mean.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Still wondering why you lost the culture war and became your betters' bitch?

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    ASSUME THE POSITION AND GET READY TO PRAISE JESUS!

  • Jack Klompus Magic Ink||

    Still wondering why nobody has stepped up and given humanity its greatest gift by beating you to death with a 2x4 and feeding your corpse to sewer rats.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    Progressives seem to bother right-wingers such as Mr. Soave, mostly because they're not as reliably white, superstitious, male, authoritarian, and rural as every Republican caucus.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    Indeed. Progressives are more reliably brown rational atheist female libertarian urbanites.

  • RoyMo||

    I met one of those once, she was afraid to ride the bus.

  • Jack Klompus Magic Ink||

    Buy a gun and shoot yourself in the face.

  • Árboles de la Barranca||

    I know you are, Rev, but what about True Progressives?

  • A Lady of Reason||

    Applauding people just because of some Lefty identity marker instead of true merit cheapens any achievements by "marginalized" groups. It's the bigotry of low expectations... A true victory is not some superficial enlightenment quota, but an underdog winning on his or her own merits alone!

  • StackOfCoins||

    I don't believe you are a real lady.

  • Incomprehensible Bitching||

    TAIL CHECK!

  • Eddy||

    Let's try the old Voight-Kampff test:

    "The tortoise lays on its back, its belly baking in the hot sun, beating its legs trying to turn itself over, but it can't. Not without your help. But you're not helping. Because you're at a shoe sale!"

  • Deconstructed Potato||

    It's not that the intersectional thinkers are necessarily wrong
    It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them.

    Fruit sushi finds new ways to outshine OBL.

  • Ecoli||

    I like the Pence rule. Don't be alone with a woman at work.

    I like women. I am married to a woman. Most women are awesome. A small percentage are truly evil though, and take pleasure and pride in nasty back-biting destruction of anybody they see as a competitor.

  • Qsl||

    The argument is that womyn with their divine connection to the Eternal Feminine will usher in a new age of matriarchal wisdom as they gain positions of authority and replace those dominance hierarchies with supportive communities. Why, if there were only enough womyn leaders, war and intimidation could be banished forever! The mandate of the CIA would be transformed into Care In Action, representing a more feminine understanding of the world.

    Further, any questionable behaviors of womyn under patriarchal oppression should be understood in their proper contexts, as you do not blame a beaten dog for being vicious, neither can you blame womyn for reacting to male oppression.

    This is textbook 2nd Wave Feminism, and you should be appalled at the obvious smear campaign against Haspel .

  • Echospinner||

    So the new boss is a female. Gee, women in the spy business. Who woulda thunk it.

    I guess these same people never watched one of those sexist Bond movies. I always thought Moneypenny was the real boss the whole time. M was just a cover up to fool the bad guys.

  • Eddy||

    Ah, poor Echospinner, You were smart enough to figure out the true leadership of MI5, but you weren't smart enough to keep your knowledge to yourself.

    It's the Comfy Chair for you.

  • Eddy||

    Or basically the same penalties as unauthorized lighting of the grail beacon.

  • Eddy||

    Darn it, I need to sound more menacing, can someone get me a Central European accent and a cat?

  • Mickey Rat||

    So Moneypenny was sexually harassing Bond?

  • Sevo||

    Kinda late; is anyone here?
    I want to provide a graphic image of the people responsible for at least 100,000,000 early deaths in the 20th century. These are among the most evil people the world has ever seen. It is hard to believe such stupidity could result in such grief again, but here is a representative of them, 7:26:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VWe7IVgHkd4
    Yes, just like Feinstein, the kindly, ignorant, (powerful) grandmother, that miserable piece of crap is representative of the most absolute evil the world has found.
    She is convinced she is due something for nothing, as if that thing were somehow sitting there and Chavez found it and handed it to her before someone else got to it. Someone in her life didn't tell her you have to work for what you want. She, and her like, are the cause of the 20th century's greatest disasters and mass murders; she owns 100,000,000 deaths.
    Gramma, like Tony, turd, the Hihn-crowd, the asshole rev, the world would be a far better place if you had died long ago.
    You can lay the implosion of Venezuela on many doorsteps, but that abysmally ignorant view of economics powers the lot of it.
    Prolly get re-posted on morning links; know your enemy.

  • ||

    They voted for it. And they got a nice rude awakening.

    Ocasio-Cortez should be their leader.

    Take Tlaib with her.

  • ||

    "This approach should frustrate true progressives. It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them."

    Have a cocktail! A cock!?

  • Mickey Rat||

    Soave is getting a taste of the difference between progressives as they really are and the ones that exist in his head.

  • ||

    "It's not that the intersectional thinkers are necessarily wrong"

    Lol.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y9deT_iW6OA

    They're profoundly blinded by ideological nonsense. And they're cowards. And relentless bullies.

  • DenverJ||

    "This approach should frustrate true progressives. It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them."
    Why in god's name (Yahweh) would libertarians want to ally with progressives?

  • Eddy||

    Come on, let them hold the football one more time, this time the liberaltarian alliance is really going to happen!

  • Eddy||

    Maybe it's time to have more black people running these black sites. Enough with the cultural appropriation!

  • Eddy||

    "another stride towards progress"

    This nation used to be on the brink of a precipice, but since them we have taken a giant stride forward!

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    The video included in the tweet does mention at the end her involvement in torture. (Of course the sentence makes certain to mention both Trump and Bush and not Obama, so its reason for inclusion in the graphic may not have been to recognize Haspel's part in torture.)

  • steve walsh||

    So female Spooks are less Spooky? More civil and personal liberty friendly? I'm dubious on that.

  • Mickey Rat||

    "...transphobia exists,..."

    It is hard to take someone seriously who uses an Orwellian construction that makes dissent from one's ideology a mental disease.

    Also, progressives tend to be extremely shallow thinkers, as well as functionally sexist and racist. They love symbolism over substance. And for the past decade or so the progressives have been outright against universal civil liberties when civil liberties interfere with whatever their present cause is.

  • ||

    "...transphobia exists, and it's bad..."

    We know it's bad because Robby links to a politician telling us that it's embarrassing.

    Mealy-mouthed whining about the progressive-libertarian alliance followed by authoritative citation of a lefty politician, without any fact, as truth? Robby can fuck right the hell off with that shit.

  • Quo Usque Tandem||

    Good for the goose, not so much the gander.

  • ||

    Having been a federal contract worker during the Obama shutdown, they are exactly right. While the civil servants have a nice vacation with backpay, federal contract workers (who do most of the actual work) were not getting paid.

    My problem with the shutdown is that it's an utter waste of money. The civil servants are getting paid, and we aren't getting the benefits of their working. It's a lose-lose situation.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Robby was pretty soave and deboner up to the "some on the left" eructation. There is absolutely no advantage to libertarian writers framing discourse in terms that meant nothing political to Americans before Hoover's reelection campaign. The earliest use of wingnut equivocations comes from British articles blaming "the left" for backing Gandhi's 1930 March to the Sea to collect salt without paying excise taxes. A 1928 specimen in a US paper again discusses British and Canadian sources flinging about these Civil War-era malapropisms. But the things were only picked up by Republicans in desperate scrabbling efforts to save the Prohibitionist Administration that pummeled the economy to death with tax laws. Save it from what? From the repeal plank the tiny Liberal Party wrote, which was copied by the Democrats to win the elections of 1932, 36, 40, 44 and 48. Oh yes. Republicans tried to bring back prohibition just as they try to bring back Dixiecrat abortion laws. So, Grrrlz running the CIA? Why not?

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    You know what other high government position is a feminist triumph...

  • loki||

    " It certainly frustrates libertarians who would occasionally like to ally with them."

    Well, maybe. And then only long enough to get laid.

  • Lester224||

    The CIA being run entirely by women at top levels is neither good nor bad. If you think the CIA is bad then whatever leadership it has is bad. For most of it's history the top levels of the CIA were 100% men.

  • AD-RtR/OS!||

    So, there are some good men then.

  • CharlieInCO||

    Robbie, it isn't true: Propublica retracted the story. I'd link it if Reason allowed links.

  • Uncle Jay||

    Progressives should run our intelligence communities.
    They know how to share information with such wonderful, progressive, tolerant and open countries like Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Russia and the PRC.
    After all, to share is to care.

  • AD-RtR/OS!||

    When better torturers are needed, they'll be found within the ranks of Feminists.

  • TJJ2000||

    Great! Now the CIA is entirely run by the statistically and scientifically proven majority of emotional-responding minded individuals. No wonder the U.S. has become entirely wrapped up and ran on 'isms', 'feelings', 'jealousy', 'cattiness', spiteful and shallow emotional 'triggers'.

    AND; No, I'm not sexist just because I say something everyone ALREADY knows (yes, even women) but are too indoctrinated by propaganda to speak up about the truth of the matter which is VERY FEW Women have the ability to lead with honorable courage.

  • vek||

    Right?

    I mean the one upshot is that almost all women who make it to high positions in the world ARE the freakish anomalies that act very masculine. They still have their chickish tendencies though, and that is scary.

    Biology is real people. Everybody knows this in their hearts and in their heads... Denying it because it is trendy to do so will not change reality. I won't bend on this shit when it comes up in conversation. I know too many facts to shoot idiots down who claim men and women are the same.

  • Social Justice is neither||

    Sorry Robby, but the fact that you see the tactics and ideas of the modern marxist left as something you want to ally with kinda means you're not libertarian no matter who you work for. Even when they come upon the correct problem their solutions are so collectivist and odious that anyone with a working brain should be running to the hills.

  • T. Busse||

    90% of what the CIA actually does is control the media as a defense propaganda apparatus. Intelligence gathering and covert action is almost identical to journalism and PR if you really think about it. The CIA should be named the Central News Bureau. It trains its "spies" (=most journalists and editors) at Fuller Seminary in Pasadena and in an evangelical place in Boston-hiding in plain sight. It's probably infected "reason" as well, given the timidity of the editors-Richard, Especially. We had an agent I ferreted out at the Libertarian party here in SF. I kept noticing the ineffectiveness and disruption caused by this person's charm and eventually confronted the person. You really have to call it out and keep the pressure on the dislogic. The sad thing is Libertarians are deeply patriotic and share so much with agents. The CIA fetishizes "credibility" and overthinks things (which is why the get it so wrong so often) - it's really arrogant, and they won't take responsibility. Same with people in sales, my sister, and kindergartners. How can we debate their actions if we don't know what they are and they withhold critical facts via control of the press?

  • Presskh||

    Sexism is obviously rampant at the CIA. They need more training in combatting it, along with more internal programs mentoring men and facilitating their upward mobility.

  • vek||

    This is scary... Trump should replace her with an old white dude who is more qualified, since there are probably 1,000 to one men/women with the proper qualifications.

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