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Gender: Female
Hometown: Wisconsin
Current location: Tejas
Member since: Thu Jan 17, 2008, 12:44 PM
Number of posts: 31,869

About Me

The most violent element in society is ignorance. Emma Goldman

Journal Archives

#TBT Elizabeth Warren -

Elizabeth Warren
Thursday, May 29 at 5:59pm ·

I started working when I was nine. The family across the street had a new baby, the new baby had colic, and I was in business. For 35 cents an hour, I would've rocked that baby all night long

But still, like air, I'll rise -

Some of these losses are so hard. My heart hurts. Safe passage, sister:

Still I Rise

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history's shame
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

Maya Angelou

A society so militarized

that it must control the message of it's war-mongering and how people react to it. I have been mulling this over as I look at my Facebook Feed this weekend and read the posts from various parties about how we must recognize our "memorial" day weekend. Some folks are telling me our dead must be honored - and only our dead (italicized no less - they are very particular about how to celebrate the holiday). Some are saying it is a time to remember all of our military. Some are more concerned that everyone enjoy the 3-day weekend (especially if they have something to sell you at 20% off and free shipping). What a giant clusterf*ck. So, I did some searching to find out where these memes are coming from. I haven't been very successful in that regard, but I did find an oped piece that I can at least relate to -

Posted: May 26, 2014

Please Stop Sharing This Memorial Day Shaming Meme:

Facebook users are all probably familiar with this popular meme, which reads “Memorial Day, in case you thought it was National BBQ Day,” (Or some variation thereof.)

This Memorial Day meme has been popping up across social media and spreading like wildfire this year, and it is (I suspect) part of a larger sanctimonious trend on sharing sites. Before, it wasn’t really considered polite to be so rudely critical of a person’s individual regard of Memorial Day, or how they celebrate it.

That’s one of the many reasons I’d like to see this “in case you thought it was National BBQ Day” image disappear off Facebook, and there are a few more ...

< snip >

... However, there’s a thing with using tragedy to impress a point. A cheap shot at Memorial Day celebrations serves no one because it doesn’t do any work to actually help or honor veterans or fallen soldiers.

It’s slacktivism at its worst, because it seeks to provoke guilt while actually doing nothing. If you feel so strongly about Memorial Day not being National Barbecue Day, then ask a veteran about their service.

Thank a veteran for their service. Thank every veteran you spot, friend or not yet acquainted, for their sacrifices and work. (Our government sure as hell isn’t doing anything close to it.)


Fight for veteran’s benefits. Do all in your power to make sure the elected officials who represent you do a good job of serving the men and women in uniform who serve the entire nation ...

Read entire article here: http://www.inquisitr.com/1268086/memorial-day-in-case-you-thought/#9BqTIoBmxS8Wuc4I.99

Feed the Poor (graphic)

Proof that misogyny kills -

I am going to post this article in here, as I don't think this is just a feminist or anti-gun article. Rather, it speaks to an entirely sick society in which the economic system (capitalism) only reinforces misogyny and violence.

Elliot Rodger's California shooting spree: further proof that misogyny kills
Attributing the deaths of six people and wounding of several others in Isla Vista to 'a madman' ignores a stark truth about our society
Jessica Valenti, theguardian.com, Saturday 24 May 2014 21.44 EDT

We should know this by now, but it bears repeating: misogyny kills.

On Friday night, a man – identified by police as Elliot Rodgers – allegedly seeking "retribution" against women whom he said sexually rejected him went on a killing spree in Isla Vista, California, killing six people and sending seven more to the hospital with serious gunshot injuries. Three of the bodies were reportedly removed from Rodger's apartment.

Before the mass murder he allegedly committed, 22-year-old Rodger – also said to have been killed Friday night – made several YouTube videos complaining that he was a virgin and that beautiful women wouldn't pay attention to him. In one, he calmly outlined how he would "slaughter every single spoiled, stuck-up, blond slut I see".

According to his family, Rodger was seeking psychiatric treatment. But to dismiss this as a case of a lone "madman" would be a mistake.

It not only stigmatizes the mentally ill – who are much more likely to be victims of violence than perpetrators of it – but glosses over the role that misogyny and gun culture play (and just how foreseeable violence like this is) in a sexist society ...

Much more here: http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/may/24/elliot-rodgers-california-shooting-mental-health-misogyny

The Master's House Is Burning

The Master's House Is Burning: bell hooks, Cornel West and the Tyranny of Neoliberalism
Monday, 19 May 2014 13:26 By Rev. Osagyefo Sekou, Truthout | Op-Ed

The black blogosphere's outrage over bell hooks calling Beyoncé a terrorist is reminiscent of the outrage over Cornel West's critique of President Obama. In both instances, contemporary black intellectuals have taken to the interwebs to express their utter disgust and have deemed West and hooks outdated. What is at stake in the younger generation's critique is not simply a question of age, but rather is fundamentally a question of ideology. The vast majority of intellectuals of our time are proponents of the neoliberal project - privatization, individualism, and a full on acceptance of capitalist logic. Race, sexuality and gender are critical aspects of their work, yet there an outright refusal to say neoliberalism and capitalism are bad. Neoliberal capitalism feeds on discrimination and alienation. The system is not broken. It is ontologically flawed and working just fine. Contemporary black intellectuals strive for a non-sexist, non-homo and -trans-phobic, and non-racist seat at the table versus a construction of a new table. While breaking the back of various discriminations is crucial, it is insufficient in the face of global capital's incorporation of historically othered persons who aspire to neoliberalism into the imperial project. To this end, individuals who have made it to the table are to be celebrated because they have achieved the Lacanian nightmare - masked as the American dream ...


... While the presence of Beyoncé and Obama in the public discourse has generated some positive images and racist and sexist backlash to boot, their mode of being helps to sustain the white patriarchal capitalist system. The gravity of black intellectual life that West and hooks subscribe to privileges a sustained critique of the entire system.

Unlike hooks and West, Obama, Beyoncé, and most younger black intellectuals believe that the system is a good system that only needs to provide greater access to the historically othered. Thus there is a rush to defend the black embodiments of neoliberalism - Obama and Beyoncé. The radical black feminist and womanist tradition sheds light on the racist and sexist formulations inside and outside the black community and keeps its eye on the system writ large. However, the neoliberal disposition directs its fever-pitched critique at the blatant racist and sexist actions of individuals while it is unable to articulate the ways in which Beyoncé and Obama undermine the very possibility of anti-neoliberal discourse ...


... As Audré Lourde so eloquently wrote - a now often-quoted refrain - "The Master's Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master's House." Neoliberalism is the master's house and tool. It limits discursive space, subjugates radicality and seduces the othered into defending its existence ...

Much more here: http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/23792-the-masters-house-is-burning-bell-hooks-cornel-west-and-the-tyranny-of-neoliberalism

Frack Till You Drop

Frack Till You Drop
BY Cole Stangler, Rebecca Burns and Mike Elk
Friday, May 23, 2014, 7:00 am

This month, the AFL-CIO unveiled its annual “Death on the Job” report, which highlights the often-overlooked toll of workplace accidents and fatalities. This year’s biggest takeaway: the dangerous—and deadly—consequences of America’s fracking-fueled oil and gas boom.

In recent years, deaths in the oil and natural gas industry have seen an especially sharp rise. The toll jumped by a stunning 23 percent in 2012 alone. This trend dates back to 2008, when horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” ushered in a new wave of oil and gas drilling across the nation. Fracking “boom towns” in states like North Dakota and Wyoming, rich in the kinds of shale formations that frackers lust after for their oil and gas deposits, have in turn seen a wave of industry-related accidents and health problems.

“The escalating fatalities and injuries in the oil and gas extraction industry demand intensive and comprehensive intervention,” the AFL-CIO’s report reads. “Without action, the workplace fatality crisis in this industry only will get worse as production intensifies and expands.”

Oil and natural gas industry workers regularly face hazards such as burns and exposure to toxic substances, which can lead to serious injuries or even death. But there’s reason to believe that fracking workers face further dangers, the long-term consequences of which may not yet have even begun to manifest fully ...

More here: http://inthesetimes.com/working/entry/16720/frack_till_you_drop

#TBT Elizabeth Warren -

I love these.

Here is today's:

Elizabeth Warren
Liked · Thursday, May 22 at 1:15pm

Amelia & I were buddies and went everywhere together. I wanted everything in the world for her. #tbt

Elizabeth Warren Leads Progressive Charge

Elizabeth Warren Leads Progressive Charge, but Has GOP Admirers Too

By Niels Lesniewski and Bridget Bowman
Posted at 5 a.m. on May 19, 2014

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

“What reaction do you usually expect from banks?” Sen. Elizabeth Warren asked a reporter last week.

It was classic Warren. Appearing at a news conference with fellow Democrats and D.C.-area college students to roll out legislation she spearheaded that would let borrowers refinance student loans, the Massachusetts Democrat dismissed a question about financial institutions losing profits from older, high-interest loans.

“There’s a real question here. Does Congress work for the rich and the powerful, for those who can hire armies of lobbyists and lawyers, or does Congress work for the rest of America?” Warren asked. “We believe the rest of America should get a fair shot at an affordable education.”

The Democratic senator is well known for her populist criticism of big banks, and the financial services sector more generally, as well as for being the driving force behind the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. And she’s raised her profile with a tour for her recently-released book “A Fighting Chance,” during which she’s been greeted by largely adoring audiences and no shortage of calls for her to seek the Democratic nomination for the presidency in 2016.

Her national profile makes her a natural to lead Democratic efforts to rally their progressive base — like with the student loan bill — but her status as a star on the left doesn’t seem to have hampered her ability to work with GOP senators under the Dome ...

Much more here: http://blogs.rollcall.com/wgdb/elizabeth-warren-leads-progressive-banner-but-has-gop-admirers-too/


White Collar Blues: An Interview with Nikil Saval
by Jake Blumgart

Even at a time of low pay and degraded working conditions, meritocratic notions surrounding white collar work are hard to dispel.

Many Americans spend an ungodly amount of their lives in an office. They spend more time with their colleagues than their friends and family. And unlike the office jobs of yore, today’s white-collared masses are not rewarded with pensions or job protections. Instead, like the blue-collar economy, the professional workforce is beset by the same forces of precarity, wage stagnation, and terrible benefits.

N+1 editor Nikil Saval’s new book Cubed: A Secret History of the Workplace, takes a look at the history of white collar working conditions, their promise of social mobility, and the office dweller’s strange place in America’s class structure. “No other workplace, no matter how degraded, has been such a constant source of hope about the future of work and the guarantee of a stable, respectable life,” he writes.

In the nineteenth century office, workers held an awkward position between the forces of labor and capital, often siding with the latter despite periodic upsurges in organizing. The office worker was, according to Saval, a symbol of reaction during the Red Scare following World War I, in much the same way “hardhats” were popularly considered the embodiment of backlash in the early 1970s.

Saval has worked in a few publishing houses, but now toils in the freelance trenches. Cubed is his first book ...

More here - https://www.jacobinmag.com/2014/05/white-collar-blues-an-interview-with-nikil-saval/

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