put your war clothes on

After a basically funky month, I am tired.  Work has been busy and bananas, as I lost an employee today, after the most bizarre manner of resignation I have yet observed.  Not that I have the most experience.  Anyway, I had to travel for work, and ended up in New Orleans during the week before Mardi Gras.  That’s actually kinda fun.  And I got beads.

went for work - came home with beads.

Got sick on the plane ride home and it lasted through the beginning of the week.  Really, I’m still occasionally coughing now, so I suppose it’s lingering.  Anyway – because I needed so much sleep at the beginning of the week I was completely behind on my Blacking It Up/AfterBlack listening this week (I’m still not done).  So a lot of news got to me in a short period of time.

And apparently it broke me.

In fact, I’m not altogether sure I wasn’t already broken earlier this year when my idiot friend proclaimed on FB that she doesn’t believe in Civil Rights legislation.  But then there were 20 GOP debates, Newt dogwhistling everything, Santorum considered an actual real candidate, Arizona’s taking text books away from children, Texas wants to end affirmative action, and mother-effing Virginia literally wants to institute state-sanctioned rape in order to limit abortions.  Yeah.  Trans-vaginal ultrasounds involve the insertion of a wand into a woman’s vagina.  There is no medical requirement that this (by definition) invasive procedure be performed prior to abortion.  It is simply a law the VA state legislature wants to mandate for any woman planning to get an abortion in the state.  Regardless of whether the woman wants the intrusion.

Coerced vaginal insertions = rape.

Just so you know.

This war on women isn’t even underground anymore.  It’s freaking blatant as anything.

The racism hasn’t calmed down either, though.  Some doofus called Whitney a stupid n-word, and two different racist videos from doofus high school students have been in the news this week.  Not to mention the Linsanity business.

Newt’s moonbase is actually starting to sound good, right about now.  Cuz Earth has too much crazy to be sustainable.  Speaking of sustainable – I almost forgot about the Cult of the Green Dragon.  Sigh.

Thanks to TWIBIU for keeping me informed.  This was kind of a depressing news week, though…maybe next week I’ll eat candy and dream about unicorns or something.

silver spoon

 I am not rich and I am not poor.  (The silver bars on the left are not mine.)  I am blessed.  Those silver bars on the left allowed me to visit my sister last month after a business trip.

I’ve been watching the Occupy Wall Street protests with interest for the last month or so.  Watching, because one of the blessings I have is a job.  And also I live in Podunk, population 3 people who would be into OWS and 30,000 who would just go on about their day and call the OWSers dirty hippies.  (I know, I know – excuses, excuses, right? but seriously.  Podunk is GOP-land.)

My idiot friend believes that the OWSers are arbitrary in their anger against the 1%, considering that even the 99% here in the US still have more than 90% of the rest of the world.  I believe that argument is a derail of the flavor: “stuff is worse other places, so you should be happy you’re not there, and fix those things first before you complain about here.”

Meanwhile, a website called slaveryfootprint.org can tell you how much slave labor contributes to your normal daily life.  Take a quiz and find out “how many slaves work for you” (my # is 46).  Except there’s no tangible way to free them.  Apparently, you can download an app on your phone and then email companies that use slave labor to express your displeasure.  There’s really no easy answer on this one.  There is so much that we use here that at some point had human rights violations attached, it’s quite difficult to handle untainted material.

So even though it was a derail, my idiot friend has a bit of a point.  OWS isn’t wrong.  But we need a parallel, global OWS.  The haves are continually putting their humanity above that of the have-nots.  I do this myself.  How many times does my lazy behind not do something for someone/some group simply because I don’t want to get off my keister?  or come up off a couple dollars, a bit of time, and some elbow grease?

I’ll admit that because of my privilege, my favorite way to help out is to just throw money at a cause.  It’s something I can do with minimal effort, and it generally does make a difference.  Sometimes I find it to be the more sensible response, as the economy of my flight to some poverty stricken area for a week versus me donating the price of that plane ticket.  This is why I disagree with short mission trips to the Global South.  Sure, folks get a glimpse into life somewhere else, but they don’t get much done, and they spend a gajillion dollars to end up building a hut, when that money could’ve built a whole hospital, and given people jobs.

Anyway, the plight of others doesn’t eliminate the current situation in our own country: a growing dichotomy between the ruling 1% and the working 99%.  If you start looking at charts and graphs about when the disparity really took off, they all point to the early 80s – and Reagan.  And yet, we currently have GOP candidates who revere Reagan, but are actually much further to the right than he was.

I’d like to be a little more clear on what I can do to stop contributing to what I do not want to support, without losing my job.  I hope that’s the next phase.  Because what are you going to do with a bunch of guilty people?  Other than desensitize them to it so they can enjoy Thanksgiving whole-heartedly.

Because compared to some, I really was born with a silver spoon in my mouth.  And I should do what I can for those who have no spoons.

 

 

officially old: what do I do with G+?

So.  I’m not actually an early adopter.  I like technotoys and all, and even though the longer I think about it, the more I’m convinced that Google = Skynet, I got one of my friends to hook me up with a G+ invite.  I’m not totally behind the curve here, but far enough behind that I don’t have a lot of friends that are on, and I’m not really sure what I’m supposed to be doing.

My most favorite thing so far is that folks from BIU and Racialicious are on there, and I can follow them without doing Twitter.  Because yeah.  I also don’t do Twitter.  I do not all the way understand Twitter, either, actually.  I get the following part.  I don’t get the conversation part.  I’m still not sure how that happens.  And I don’t think I have time for it anyway.  Honestly, I don’t understand how all these people can have jobs and have time for all this social media!  Unless.  Well.  There are a lot of unemployed people these days.

See, I must be crazy old, because I freaking LOVE del.icio.us (just delicious now).  I love getting to just outline some relevant text in an  article that someone should totally read, and then addressing it to that person, and sending it off.  I get to keep a copy to know what I’ve sent.  With add-ons on Chrome and Firefox I can just hit a button to tag something.  It’s easy and functional.  And a dinosaur.  (And in the midst of writing this I just delicious’ed [yes, it is now a verb] 2 articles to the R and 2 to my mom.)  But really, who wants to send an email link every time they come across an article that they want someone to read?  And who wants to receive that email?  Nobody.  Not me anyway.  Delicious me, sucker.

In other news, I recently involved myself in a political discussion on FB.  Which I don’t normally do.  The post was just so inflammatory to me though:

oh this is the kind of fight i can get behind. Go Cantor! Go Boehner. DO NOT CAVE. If the president won’t bend (whether on principle or bc he’s trying to keep his left base happy) on spending cuts then FORCE the debt ceiling freeze. Then he will have no choice but to prod his party to cut spending or default. And he’s surely not stupid enough to default.

I was apparently in just the right place to HAVE to respond.  I knew I’d get whacked, but I had to. And I did get whacked, but not by my friend, by her husband.  Which I’m not into simply because he doesn’t know me. At all. Anyway, my point is that this whole debt ceiling mess is grating on my last everloving nerve.  I realize governing isn’t as clear as it seems to us folks in the peanut gallery, BUT!  Can we not get it together?

the stone on 'Secession Hill'

I live in Podunk, SC.  Nestled between the seat of secession and a town that hosts a store actually named The Redneck Shop (Google it if you must).  Nearly every white person I meet around here is a staunch Republican.  And yet many of them see the need for compromise to work things out.  To be clear, the Tea Party has South Carolina by the nipples, but there are still reasonable people (of the Republican persuasion) here.  If we can have them here, how did none of them end up in DC?!?  Why is Boehner so beholder to the TPers that he can’t even lean toward reality?

Eh.  I don’t know.  I wish the President wasn’t so centrist, because then we might actually end up in the middle.   But now, he’s so centrist, and wanting to work with everyone, he’s leaning further and further right.  It’s like he keeps capitulating and the GOP is like – “that’s right, we’re not caving on ANYTHING”.  But they should be held responsible for holding up progress and gumming up the works, and somehow that’s not happening.

SO frustrating.  Especially since I live in Podunk, SC.  We all know the score here in South Carolina.  The Dems here vote party lines whenever we can and it makes no difference.  It’s spitting in the wind.  And I don’t know what it’s like other places, but here?  It’s mostly because there are so many poor and middle class white people here who would rather miss out themselves than see the gov’t do something to help poor/middle class brown people.  You can tell when it comes from that kind of place.  Because the arguments have HUGE holes.  Something like. “Yeah, but you know, State’s Rights!”  Or just a pure bootstraps argument.  I’m tired of it.  I try to stay out of it, but CNN is on blast in our work breakroom 24/7.  It is very uncomfortable to be the only brown person at the table during some of their topics.

Anyway.  I’m still not clear on G+.  Ideas?  =)

friday wrap-up: crappy news week

I’ve been battling strep this week, and I’m winning now – so that’s good.  I actually had no idea because the last time I had it [when i was a kid] I was miserable with a fever and all.  This week was just gargling salt water and drinking tea – no fever, etc.  But what a week of disaster and craziness!

Don’t talk about the weather.  It might hear you.  Not to mention the fact that CA and GA are still dealing with fallout from last week’s fires, floods, and mudslides.

We’re all totally over Kanye now – which is good – but it seems Hollywood/the Entertainment industry decided to give Spanky and the gang their own DiscoveryChannel style ‘women-hating’ week. [trigger warning]

There was leftover Mackenzie-furor from last week, as people are still trying to process what she called a “consensual relationship”.  [I don’t get it either. With a clear pattern of abuse/steady supply of drugs, how is there *ever* a “consensual relationship between one who has power and one who does not. ]

Then there was the Roman Polanski mess – which still has me pissed.  More because of all the misplaced support from people I used to have a lot more respect for like Whoopi.  How is drugging and raping a child made better cuz it happened ‘a long time ago’? Especially when the perp has said this?!?!

Then I happened upon this article about Elizabeth Smart’s ordeal, and I was almost in tears at her description of endless rape she endured.

All this awfulness and we can’t even get a public option on the table…bad guys won in the news this week.

Please don’t be depressed though.  The people in Rio de Janeiro are having a party – rejoice with them for the first Olympics in South America.

no shortage of handbaskets

Ummmm…have people been taking crazy pills across the country?  Or is this the real Obama effect – he causes most of America to go stark, raving, …you know.

Last year, people were writing songs for him, making signs all over the world, turning his speeches into musical rallying cries.  This year, other people are calling him a racist, fascist, socialist – showing up to protest with loaded semiautomatic weapons.

I’m just not getting it.  He’s just a man.  Trying to be the POTUS.  Vilified and reified by turns, he still seems to be doing better than that last guy.

I don’t really have more to say than everyone else who has commented on this other than the fact that this is starting to scare me.  I’m not clear on the agenda of the rabid Obama opponents, but it seems like they are rabidly against brown people just on g.p.

see what other folks are saying:

@ Racialicious

@ Shakesville

@ The Root

So yeah, there’s some serious race-based crap hitting the fan right now, but let’s not forget that most of it is ostensibly because of the whole healthcare debate:

Getting less, indeed.

So, I know what the destination is – I’m just not sure which handbasket we’re riding in.

almost, doesn’t count?

falling-moneyThanks to Liss, I had to watch a bit of the American Idol final auditions to keep my heart from palpitating.

See, for some reason, I am not appreciating all the townhall meetings.  All the talk about stimulus, with action still not forthcoming – blowing up into a battle between the Left and Right.  Lots of ways to spend money, not so many ways to *make* money.  The talking is actually really annoying, and I’ve passed the point of being disgusted with the folks who are supposed to be representing us and acting in our interests.

The longer I live, the more it becomes clear that we are all the same.  None of us has ever come this way before.  Some of us are better at learning from others and others’ mistakes, but most of the time we’re all just making it up as we go.

When you figure out that we’re all just making this up, you realize how much more important it is for those people in positions of responsibility to learn as much as they can about whatever it is they’re responsible for.  We have to be diligent, because we are actually running things.  That is a scary thought sometimes.

So check it out:

According to Kanjorski, on September 18, 2008 the Fed tried to “stem the tide” by pumping money into the financial system but it didn’t work and decided instead to announce an immediate increase in deposit insurance to $250,000 per account to stop the panic.

Said Kanjorski: “If they had not done that, their estimation is that by 2 p.m. that afternoon, $5.5 trillion would have been drawn out of the money market system of the U.S., would have collapsed the entire economy of the U.S., and within 24 hours the world economy would have collapsed. It would have been the end of our economic system and our political system as we know it.

::shudder::