Thursday, August 30, 2012

disconnect

I recently had a disappointing discussion with a young biochemistry student from UW. At first glance, she seemed to be a person with whom I could have a very interesting discussion about the current state of science for profit, chemical companies owning the dominant agriculture businesses and patents, and the need for humans to consider themselves above the future of all other species.

I find sciences to be utterly breathtaking.  The things we have learned- the metropolises we have created- technology, satellites sending a photo from my phone in the kitchen to my laptop in the living room-  we are amazing.  Humanity has created awe inspiring feats through science and architecture- and despite the myopic quarterly profit motivated lack of ecological sustainability I am still proud to be of the species that figured out how to discern the elements, mass and state of matter on the moons orbiting a planet a billion miles away from us.  Brilliant!!  I look upon the city of Seattle from the ferry and am always impressed with her skyline- despite the "Qwest" tattooed on her ass.

So, as a proponent of the field, I felt that I was coming from a place of love of science when the topic turned to GMO's.

At first glance, she seemed to be a little rebellious, a free thinker with her piercings and funky hairdo.  I had heard her talk about gaming on a previous occasion, and assumed some level of geek ( I adore nerds, geeks- recently rediscovering my demographic was wonderful- I had forgotten for so many years how open minded and warm the envelope of the science fiction crowd - how could I have forgotten?)  She reminded me of myself in the 80's rockin' the Robert Smith hairdo and trying to tattoo a boy's name in my knee with a safety pin.

I was shocked when instead of having a thoughtful discussion about Monsanto and canola farmers, that instead, she repeated no less than seven times how GMO's area miracle and for the betterment of humanity.  She told me that creating cats in a petri dish which would not trigger a histamine reaction is a worth while task and that scientists are human and didn't mean to make the mistakes that have caused negative results in the field. She had never heard the name "Monsanto" and instead of listening to me, told me she could find that information on the internet and completely dismissed the part of the conversation where I could speak and be heard.  Every time I opened my mouth to explain my perspective or to support it with evidence, I was met with her louder voice, repeating the above statements, exactly in the same regurgitated manner as the first time.

I actually had to say to her that if I was interrupted another time with the same argument that I would discontinue the discussion, that it was in fact NOT a discussion at all, but rather a one sided argument in defense of something that did not exist because I had yet to open my mouth on the subject.

How could this be?

It started me thinking about myself at that age.  Long before I had a chance to go to college, I was pushed out of my family, so I had to go back a little farther to when I wasn't forced into survival mode. I was fighting for my right to have an opinion so much that the opinion I had was mostly a regurgitation of partisan politics.  By the time I was 16 though, I had shed the idea that political parties could define me, although I spent some time considering libertarian perspectives.

One of the things I have been curious about over the past year as I participated in social media for a "social movement" is- why the hell can't we pull support from young women?  Highschool and college aged women are over-represented in social media, as well as in the population, outnumbering men in a 54% to 46% ratio.  I have spent many hours pouring over statistics from many sources and was still completely perplexed.

Until I had this conversation.

It reminded me of a quote from an article I recently read- I referred to it in my previous post.

"Most women fight wars on two fronts;
one for whatever the putative topic is,
and one simply for the right to speak, to have ideas, to be acknowledged,
to be in possession of facts and truths, to have value, 
to be a human being"

So I have come to the conclusion that most women at this age (and indeed at any age) are struggling with a handicap- fighting to have an opinion as well as forming an educated opinion at the same time is difficult to say the least. I think it takes two or three times as long for women to be heard than for men.  

This theory was proven in a social laboratory at Westlake Park last night, when a man asked me what I thought about "the republican war on women". I began to tell him about how I believed it was subterfuge, it is the "hot topic" the politicians are using during this election in order to shock the mainstream into becoming distracted from the larger issues of the time- such as the complete unsustainability of our current global business practices and socioeconomic policies. I began to describe the current media has created an expectation of which the bar has been set by Jerry Springer and Reality TV.  

Another brilliant woman joined in the conversation and began to describe the current state of the democratic stance on women's issues and gave examples about how both parties support a culture which subjugates women and measures their contributions with dollars instead of by quality of productivity.

At this point, I began to notice that the man who had asked the opinion was now speaking with two other men and had completely stopped listening to us. I quietly pointed to the three men who initially had seemed sincerely interested about the topic. The other woman nodded her head knowingly as I shook mine in disbelief.

I raised my voice a bit and began talking about the general problem women have with being heard, and how even men who consider themselves to be feminists, or feminist allies have to do a lot of work studying and acknowledging their privilege, teaching themselves to come to the table without any firm opinions and spend a great deal of time listening.



Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Knowing What’s best for Poor People

I was up late one night and watched a comedic interview of Christian Lander discussing his book Whiter Shades of Pale and the previous book and blog Stuff White People Like.  I thought it was hilarious- mostly because it's true.  I think it would be more accurately called "Middle America likes", because there are plenty of other-than-white people who can fall within the construct of this very honest self-criticism.  But for the most part- his color chart is quite accurate.

#62 Knowing What's Best for Poor People excerpt:


It is a poorly guarded secret that, deep down, white people believe if given money and education that all poor people would be EXACTLY like them. In fact, the only reason that poor people make the choices they do is because they have not been given the means to make the right choices and care about the right things.


...A great way to make white people feel good is to tell them about situations where poor people changed how they were doing things because they were given the ‘whiter’ option. 


“Back in my old town, people used to shop at Wal*Mart and then this non-profit organization came in and set up a special farmers co-op so that we could buy more local produce, and within two weeks the Wal*Mart shut down and we elected our first Democratic representative in 40 years.” White people will first ask which non-profit and are they hiring? After that, they will be filled with euphoria and will invite you to more parties to tell this story to their friends, so that they can feel great.
~~~~~~~~~~


The basic subcontext of this highly accurate  observation that the majority of Middle America simply does not accept the fact that in a capitalist profit driven society, there will always be poverty.  As long as we live in a plutocracy a significant percentage of the population (primarily due to race, disability, gender, orientation or simply being born within it) are given a value based on economic income rather than contribution to community outcome, there will inevitably be significant suffering of lower stratus. 


What Cristian Lander is referring to is called Privilege.  You don't have to be a white male to have it, but if you are, you do.  The problem with privilege is that you can't tell when you have it.  Normal is relative. White privilege, male privilege, social privilege, economic privilege, heterosexual privilege, cisgender privilege, education privilege (let me know if I left anything out) are all rampant~ even though the middle has convinced itself that racism and sexism is fixed, women are allowed to be CEO's now... "some of my best friends are black"... "all I have to do to make my life work is open a muffin shop or become a photographer" lifetime-movies-for-women-load-of-crap shoveled from the "just keep shopping, everything is fine" network. "Calling me a racist or sexist is 'reverse racism' or 'reverse sexism'. ignorance.





Everything is not fine.  


"Welfare" is a loan, not a handout.


There are 5-6 empty houses for every homeless person in the USA according to US Census Bureau and National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty.


33% of the male homeless population are veterans


Federal Housing submerged policies benefit the people who need it the least... This is in direct conflict with how the welfare state should work...  The majority of the money gets spent on policies for homeowners...


I have recently advertised for a house share with child care light housework and cooking as barter.  I have fibromyalgia.  I can't do these things alone, but when my daughter helps, we can cook and do dishes and laundry and maybe sweep up a bit~ together we can work almost like a "normal person".

I asked for specific things, from a specific place in Kitsap County WA.  I posted in facebook and craigslist.  Here's what I got: 


everything but what I asked for.

I got advice.  I got advice from relatives I never hear from and complete strangers.  I got replies to my ads asking me to pay more than I clearly stated I can afford, and job offers I am unable to execute.  I went around in circles with very many people who assume they know better, have more information, have access to more resources.  

Let me explain something.  I am not a wallflower, helpless, or playing the victim.  I am not ignorant.  I have a simple need and I asked for help.

I have been to every single housing authority, county resources, YWCA, outreach, soup kitchen, Salvation Army, Department of Social Services, Emergency Housing, Emergency Shelter that exists in this area as well as in King county.

There is no help for a person who is not able to adhere to time limits and casework program which was clearly not designed for disabled people. If I was an able bodied person, I would have a job I love and be with people and surroundings I adore. I miss working. I often thought "I can't believe I am getting paid to dead-head pansies". (Love you. <3 <3)



So while I thank you for your efforts, your intentions and the fact that you care- because I know you do...

Please stop "explaining things"  to me.



~~~~~~~~~~ 
"Most women fight wars on two fronts, one for whatever the putative topic is 
and one simply for the right to speak, to have ideas, to be acknowledged to be in possession of facts and truths, to have value, to be a human being." 
~~~~~~~~~~





recommended reading:
Chicago's Quiet Home Liberation Front
US Has One of the Highest Child Poverty Rates in the Developed World
Get Educated: What is Domestic Violence?
Making the Rent on Minimum Wage




photocredit


I hurt all over today.  I traveled 2 days in a row, and one of them I was bending to the ground.


I cried a couple of times.  Sometimes the pain can be overwhelming.  ~not so much the severity, but rather the duration.  

Mostly it's in my hips, legs, neck and right shoulder.  
Fingers are cramping up.  Hurts to type.  Hurts to mouse.
Hurts to sit on my sore butt.
Have to go out again tomorrow, the steps on and off the bus are rough.  I won't be able to bring groceries "home"(less).


Friday, August 17, 2012

Disheartening News for the GOP

Welfare (TANF) is not a "hand-out".

E and I receive "welfare" benefits from the State of Washington.
Our Child support is "captured" for repayment.

There are very many misconceptions about this.  Just as there are about Social Security being an "entitlement".  Actually, social security is paid for by an individual, their spouse and their employer, not handed out by our "benevolent" government.


This statement is almost correct.  The non- custodial parent is not "repaying" the State, since the child support is a debt owed to the child and the custodial parent.  In reality, even though the State "captures" the non- custodial parent's payment to Child Support Services (CPS), the custodial parent and the child are re-paying the debt to the State with their child support payments.

Every month that E's father pays child support, I get a statement of how it has "been dispersed" and applied to the overall debt of both back-pay of child support, back-pay of TANF or medical bills, and my favorite:  $25.00 fee for processing the state issued US Bank  [US Bank is the single largest financer of the coal mountaintop removal mining industry in the U.S. atop their complicity housing crisis and corporate accountability issuesdebit card with no money on it.  Yep, I pay them $25.00 per year so I have the privilege of handing over child support money to re-pay TANF.  Let me say that another way.  CPS and US bank charge me $25.00 for a debit card with NO MONEY on it.

So while folks are complaining about how many crack addicted baby making machines are out there stealing your hard earned money, some of us are actually educated about the FACTS instead of regurgitating some dried up party line used to cover up the FACT that something close to 60% of the country's budget is subsidizing private armies and weapons manufacturers, not to mention the "corporate" welfare that makes the business tax rate between half and 1/4 the rate that individuals pay- sometimes not even paying any taxes at all.

If Microsoft paid Taxes in the State of Washington- where their actual headquarters are, there would be NO school funding deficits.  Instead, they have their "official" headquarters in Nevada  in order to avoid such payments- but privately fund charter school agendas in the WA political system.  I heard Starbucks does the same thing~ but I can't seem to find any evidence to support this.

But I digress.

I highly recommend trying to survive on my (welfare)  budget.  Feel free to contact me for the details if you are interested.  It would change your mind about how "welfare recipients are living the high-life" on your dime.

*note to self- get a better picture of this document.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

I wish for an insult that means the same thing as "douche" without being derogatory to vaginas.

This is just a flitting request as I sit here thinking about my former room mate.



photo courtesy of:
douche gifts

no, Romney was not my room mate, I just found this google image search result to be amusing.

[deletedtext]

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

[deleted text]


I have never responded physically or verbally to any of this.  I have simply reported it and recorded some of it.  I have not spoken more than 4 sentences to this man since February 2012, the first time I reported but did not make records of this kind of treatment.

5-25-12 witness account
5-30-12 witness account
5-31-12 witness account
6-3-12 REC0016.WAV 
6-4-12 REC0018.WAV 
6-6-12 REC0020.WAV  (includes audio consent to be recorded)
6-7-12 REC001.WAV
6-7-12 REC003.WAV
6-8-12 thru 6-30-12 witness account
7-3-12 witness account
7-5-12 witness account
7-30-12 witness account


Monday, August 6, 2012

Today I am missing my comrades who are having a meeting in Fremont.  I really wish I was there, I know it would brighten my spirits.  I hope when I do get there I will be able to have some face time.

It makes me furious that another person could have such an effect on my life.  In fact, I'm quite furious at Barbara for being complicit in the lies and even with Gene for being a good man doing nothing so that evil can prevail.

I suppose it's all rather ambiguous and difficult to understand without context.  I have started to transcribe some of the audio files here though it is barely scratching the surface of the (almost daily) abuse.  I would be able to withstand this behavior and even school the perpetrator were it not for the fact that I am trying to raise a daughter and there is no way I will teach her that such undeserved male privilege and verbal assault is in any way acceptable.  The lack of healthy role models in her life is appalling.  I look forward to the day we are no longer shackled by this abject poverty which has left us little choice but to depend on the extended familial relations.

But yes, tonight I am furious with Barbara.  Her facade of blind devotion to her relative perpetrator of domestic violence is disgusting.  I am beginning to understand her part in the dysfunction and responsibility for inciting violent reactions for the various members in her family she accuses of being unreasonable simply because of the fact that she assumes that for some reason I have done things to "provoke" a violent reaction.

Thank God/dess/less for AJ and Maddie.  Blessed be this small family.

Off now to do some work in the car while it's cool.  I can pack a lot of crap in there.

Love to the Hales.

Friday, August 3, 2012

levothyroxine
no cyclobenzaprine
only 1 vicadin left, I will save it for a bad day, maybe the trip over to seattle.

Right hip is tight and painful
right shoulder pinches
front of my thighs are tender and sore
slight headache
shoulders tight and sore
low back aches and pinches with movement
neck muscles are exhausted and I can't keep my head up all day

They're gone. Blessed be and best of luck. You are missed.

Moved some things into the storage unit today. Tucker was really helpful and let me complain about his mom and brother being awful and broken, damaging E and myself to the point at which we have to leave to be homeless on couches around the sound.

It will be nice to get the fuck out of town. I wish we never had to come back.
I got mail that is suggesting I may not get ssi/ssd
It says they would like to get some payment up front since the judges have been consistently conservative lately.

I am exhausted and can't deal with that info right now. I want a nap.

We are at Kelly's son's house crashing on their couch. I am full or anger today.

Despite the dysfunction, this family has done more for me than my own family.  All of the extended relations really are loyal to each other. I really wish I could switch bodies with them so they could see what it's like to be in mine. It hurts.  I'm thinking a freaky friday is in order.

Tuck called before 8 and we lamented some more.