No More Empty Fortune Cookies!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I'm So Excited!

Wanna know why? I'm the luckiest Fortune Cookie in the world right now. Work is going great, the boss is recognizing that I got skillz, school is going well, I have the love of my life by my side and now...I get to go to a super cool art class with one of my all time favorite bloggers, Real Live Lesbian!
Not only am I psyched about the class, but I'm especially excited to meet Real Live, in real life. I think she's one of the best bloggers I've come across in the blogosphere. She's genuine, honest, and intriguing in her writing, and she's a fabulous artist as well! I look forward to drawing much inspiration from such a talented person. I'm hoping a tad bit of her talent will rub off on me through osmosis.
The art class is a focus on releasing negativity through art. Oh boy! With the current political climate, the state of the world's economy, and the latest string of extra preachy, end of days, god's punishment themed emails I've received, I could certainly benefit from releasing some negativity! Hell, who wouldn't?

You wanna know what else I'm excited about? Wifester's mom. Rewind. Have I told yall what a terrific Mother in Law I have? If you've missed it, she's FANTASTIC. Words can not describe how lucky I feel to have such a loving, caring, intelligent, open, and accepting mother in law.
I've long admired her for her poetic artistry, and her ability to make the Wifester's knees shake with just one look (something I've yet to accomplish) but now, she's gone and started up a business to assist builders in building Green Buildings. See, she took this really hard test from LEED, The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). LEED is a third-party certification program and the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. LEED gives building owners and operators the tools they need to have an immediate and measurable impact on their buildings’ performance. LEED promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.
I'm really proud of her, and I think that she should be really proud of herself too. She's making an impact on our planet, by teaching others and helping others to build buildings that are more earth friendly. Now that, my friends, deserves some kudos, if you ask me.
I feel privilidged to have such inspiration in such close proximity to me these days.

What's going on in your world?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

WWC Then & Now
So I really didn't get a good chance to get very many photos for this week's WWC. Tink, asked for us to interpret, via our cameras, the words Then and Now. (Geez, Tink, are you trying to give me an aneurysm?) I decided I needed to dig into some archives to fulfill this weeks challenge.

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I ran into one of the Party Boys, who I used to roommate with, way back Then...
And here's the same Party Boy Now...
Here's me, way, way, way back Then

And a balance between Then and Now...

That's all I got for yah this week. If you wanna play along, go see Tink, she'll hook you up.

The words for next week are

Check back to see what we come up with!

Monday, October 27, 2008

This weekend was packed full o fun!
It started out on Friday with a fabulous Halloween party over at my friend's house. They live in the same neighborhood as us, so it was really nice to not have far to go to get home.
I was a fairy, and being a fairy, I had big purple wings.

I learned an invaluable lesson on Friday night. Fairy wings and jello shots don't mix. Actually, Fairy wings, jello shots, and a house full of candles, people, and drinks don't mix. Wifester was the Karate Kid, and I think she got the better deal. She wore extremely comfy clothes and flip flops all night. Oh well, I was super cute in my pink and purple multi-colored striped knee high socks. The other lesson I learned was never wear a wig when you plan on doing shots all night. I kept having to hold my wig, while slamming back a shot, only to end up with a sideways wig. Unfortunately, Wifester forgot her camera, so we were left to use cell phones to try to capture photos of ourselves, but as soon as the hostess sends me the photos she took, I'll be sure to post them!
Saturday was a day of recovery. Although the plan was to get up and hit the flea market, we ended up staying in and laying low all day. Which was perfectly fine with me. By Sunday morning, the alcohol had made it's way out of our systems and we were raring to go, so we headed on over to the flea market and spent hours there. Then we headed downtown to catch the Zombie Walk. Yup, you heard me right. The Zombie WALK!! We were surrounded by the undead in the middle of the So-Bro District of downtown Nashville! They gathered at Riverfront Park, and honestly, I was having a bit of trouble distinguishing some of the zombies from some of the park's transient residents. It was sinfully amusing to watch one poor woman, who kept trying to sleep off whatever it was that probably caused her to end up living in the park to begin with, as she was jolted awake by the realization that a zombie just passed by. She'd jump, sit upright, shake her head, then lay back down. A few minutes later, she'd catch a glimpse of another, and the bolt to upright, head-shake, frightened/confused look, followed by the inevitable nod off to oblivion that would soon follow again. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry for her.
I did see a zombie I know! My old roommate, one of the Party Boys! It was wonderful to see him and catch up and all that jazz. As zombies go, he looked great. I was glad Wifester got to meet him too. She's heard so many stories, and finally there was a face, undead as it was, to put with the tales. And we were able to reminisce and give each other confirmation that we are both in much better places today than we were back in those days. Always good to see an old friend.
Wifester did remember her camera for the Zombie Walk, here's some of what she captured:

for more zombies, check out Wifester's Flickr

Friday, October 24, 2008

Hooray for the YMCA

I'm so excited! I read yesterday that after long battles and much debate, as of January 2009, the YMCA is dropping it's family membership conditions, to now include anyone living at the same address. There is, of course, a backlash against the move. Many people are saying that the YMCA is "trying to cash in on the gay community and young people living together." But the YMCA says simply that they have looked closely at their mission statement and philosophy and feel that this is the proper course of action, at this time. Saying the change is for college roommates, seniors living together and grandparents raising children and that it is about making it more affordable for non-traditional families.

Kudos to you, YMCA for thinking proactively and taking steps to make membership more affordable to everyone. Period. No more discrimination. Now that's what I'm talking about.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

New Spaces and WWC

Shhh! Listen closely. Do you hear it? The sound of incessant bitching and moaning? No, it's not the presidential candidates, it's my team at work. The new boss-man made us move our desks closer to his office. You'd think the company removed the Flavia coffee station or something. Eh, I don't mind the move, really. I can still see out a window, I have a bigger cubicle, and hell, I still have a job. That's better than some have it, right?
So moving to a new space gave me opportunity to reorganize my stuff, which, if you know me, is a true task. Orginizational skills are something that I was not, shall we say, blessed with. Oh, I keep my work stuff pretty on track, but I always feel a bit scattered. I'm just not a very lineal thinker, I guess. I kinda like moving to a new space. I hate the packing and the unpacking, but the idea of a fresh new space to inhabit is exciting to me. Like a chance to start anew. Lets see what we can do with this one. Am I weird for that? I don't really care if I am. I'm relatively sure I'm weird for a lot of things. Enjoying new spaces would be least on the list.
Anywhoodle, today is Tuesday, and that means....
Stop! WWC Time!
Yes, kiddies, once again, Tink, over at Pickled Beef, proposed a perplexing perdiciment when she provided the words Plain and Adorned. I was up for the challenge, however, since Santa Clause has yet to bring that camera to the Wifester early, like I asked, I'm back to shooting WWC's with my phone. Forgive the poor quality for just a tad bit longer? Thanks! You guys are the bestest!
Here's my interpretation of Plain & Adorned:

Plain Desk

Adorned Desk

Plain Canvas
Adorned Canvas

The words for next week are:

Hope you play along!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Bradley Effect? and Voter Fraud with a Twist to the Right

There's been a lot of talk about the Bradley Effect. If you don't know what that is, it's the phenomenon of white voters saying they will vote for a black candidate, but when they get to the booth, they, for whatever reason, don't. I was talking about this with Wifester the other day, and I told her that I believe we're going to see something a bit opposite. I told her that my prediction is that many Republicans will actually never say out loud that they are voting for Obama, but when they get in the booth, and their conscience weighs on them, they'll vote Obama because they know in their heart of hearts that he is the best candidate available to choose from. Then Colin Powell endorsed Obama, and I started thinking, you know, maybe I'm onto something here. This morning, CBS' Bob Schieffer confirmed my suspicions. He made it clear that behind the scenes, Powell's words echoed the criticism of many Republicans, saying, "What Colin Powell said yesterday and why it was so riveting to hear him, he was saying aloud what a lot of Republicans are saying privately."
Watch the video here, at the Huffington Post.

I sure hope that this is a pattern we will see continue to repeat over and over again until Nov. 4th.

In other news, all the voter fraud allegations have turned up an arrest. The funny thing( if there is anything funny about voter fraud) is that it was a Republican, working for a Republican group who was arrested. According to the L.A. Times:

SACRAMENTO -- The owner of a firm that the California Republican Party hired to register tens of thousands of voters this year was arrested in Ontario over the weekend on suspicion of voter registration fraud.

State and local investigators allege that Mark Jacoby fraudulently registered himself to vote at a childhood California address where he no longer lives so he would appear to meet the legal requirement that all signature gatherers be eligible to vote in California. His firm, Young Political Majors, or YPM, collects petition signatures and registers voters in California and other states.

Jacoby's arrest by state investigators and the Ontario Police Department late Saturday came after dozens of voters said they were duped into registering as Republicans by people employed by YPM. The voters said YPM workers tricked them by saying they were signing a petition to toughen penalties against child molesters.

The firm was paid $7 to $12 for every Californian it registered as a member of the GOP.

Nice. So when you can't get people to register for your party, you lie, deceive and use trickery. Interesting methodology for the party that proclaims to be the party of morals and values.
When, oh when will the Green Party and the Libertarian Party move to the forefront leaving these Republicrats and Democrins in it's wake?

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Colin Powell endorses Obama!

calling him a "transformational figure." He listed several reasons for his choice, among them:
1. Obama's response to the economic crisis vs McCain's erratic response
2. Obama's ability to reach a broad spectrum of classes, races, and parties
3. Obama's rhetorical ability and his substance
4. Palin's lack of preparedness for the office
5. McCain's smears vs Obama's substance and rising above the smear tactics.
6. The danger of two more conservatives on SCOTUS
7. The attacks on Muslims, and that Obama is not a Muslim, but even if he were, the question we should be asking is , so what? One's religion does not dictate one's ability to be president of the United States.
I was especially happy to hear him mention that aspect, this is the same discussion I had with my father the other day. My father insists that Obama is a Muslim, and in fact is not African-American, but Arab-American and that in itself is in my father's mind, enough to disqualify Barack from being the president. I say that is an extremely racist view. Not to mention showing extreme religous predjudice.
As Obama rakes in the endorsements, from the left and the right alike, I hope those on the fence still take notice and really pay attention to the words of people like Colin Powell, who are highly respected and whos'e opinions and ideas are cherished by a spectrum of politicos across the world.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Habeas Is A Right

I read this over at Emptywheel this morning:

"A potentially explosive new court filing by the lawyers for Lakhdar Boumediene and five other Guantanamo detainees suggests that the Bush administration ordered the Bosnian government to arrest and hold the men after an exhaustive Bosnian investigation had found them innocent of any terrorism related activity and had ordered their release, in order to use them as props in Bush's January 2002 State of the Union speech.

The filing--"Lakhdar Boumediene, et al., Petitioners, v. George W. Bush, President of the United States, et al., Respondents, Petitioners' Public Traverse to the Government's Return to the Petition for Habeas Corpus"--lays out the case that the Bush administration threatened at the highest levels to withdraw diplomatic and military aid to the Balkan nation if Bosnia released the men, which its own three-month investigation had found innocent of any terrorism charges in the days leading up to Bush's January 2002 State of the Union.

Faced with the threats of the withdrawal of aid and that if it released the men, the White House would order NATO troops to detain them, Bosnia transferred the men under duress to the custody of the US government in January 2002. Ten days later, Bush used sixteen words to warn Americans that, in "cooperation" with the Bosnian government, it had captured terrorists who had planned to bomb the US embassy in Sarajevo: "Our soldiers, working with the Bosnian government, seized terrorists who were plotting to bomb our embassy," Bush told the nation.

But, six years later, the detainees' petition says, after the US Supreme Court has sided with the detainees and ordered the US to give the detainees habeas corpus rights, the Bush administration has failed to repeat the embassy plot charges that Bush used in his State of the Union address, or to produce credible evidence of why the men should be held as enemy combatants."

click here for the full transcript of the petition.

Perry Ferrell, of Jane's Addiction, sang "Idiots Rule" , on the "Nothing's Shocking" album, and both those phrases and the lyrics seem to emerge as the Bush/Cheney anthem. After eight years of destroying the very fabric of our nation with their crimes against humanity, failure to adhere to international treaties, and overt dismissal of NATO regulations, the only shock to me will be if they are ever actually held accountable for any of their many impressionable crimes.
Bush has actually violated several US laws including:

Friday, October 17, 2008

Steal Back Your Vote!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

My thoughts on the debate

Was anyone else stricken, as I was, by McCain's calloused words, what with his obscure voter fraud allegations and odd connotation between his and Obama’s race with that of Kennedy and Goldwater’s? Seriously, it gave me shivers. In case you missed it, here, let me share the moment with you:

SCHIEFFER: All right. We're going to move to another question and the topic is leadership in this campaign. Both of you pledged to take the high road in this campaign yet it has turned very nasty.
Senator Obama, your campaign has used words like "erratic," "out of touch," "lie," "angry," "losing his bearings" to describe Senator McCain.
Senator McCain, your commercials have included words like "disrespectful," "dangerous," "dishonorable," "he lied." Your running mate said he "palled around with terrorists."
Are each of you tonight willing to sit at this table and say to each other's face what your campaigns and the people in your campaigns have said about each other?
And, Senator McCain, you're first.
MCCAIN: Well, this has been a tough campaign. It's been a very tough campaign. And I know from my experience in many campaigns that, if Senator Obama had asked -- responded to my urgent request to sit down, and do town hall meetings, and come before the American people, we could have done at least 10 of them by now.

When Senator Obama was first asked, he said, "Any place, any time," the way Barry Goldwater and Jack Kennedy agreed to do, before the intervention of the tragedy at Dallas. So I think the tone of this campaign could have been very different.

And the fact is, it's gotten pretty tough. And I regret some of the negative aspects of both campaigns. But the fact is that it has taken many turns which I think are unacceptable.”
So if Obama had responded to McCain’s urgent requests…then the McCain campaign would not have called Obama a terrorist? They would not have perpetuated this lie to people who they know are frightened and under-informed and without resources to repudiate or disprove through thorough and accurate fact checking? They would have stopped their supporters at their rallies and said “No, that’s not acceptable, we won’t tolerate it” the very moment someone yelled “Kill him!” after Obama’s name was mentioned? Really? Cause I’m having a bit of a hard time believing that.

When John McCain claimed that Barack Obama and ACORN were "perpetrating one of the greatest frauds in voter history in this country, maybe destroying the fabric of democracy" I laughed. Folks, this is an absurd claim. In the first place, any time you have thousands of employees, someone’s gonna be a slacker. That’s why there’s supervisors who check those registrations. That’s how the fake names were found. No false voter was registered. Voter fraud would only occur had the vote been cast. ACORN helped deter that. The fraud was not perpetrated by ACORN, it was committed AGAINST ACORN. McCain forgot to mention how many of those people who were found to be turning in false names were registered Republicans, and members of the Young Republicans. Hmmmm….that’s interesting, if you ask me.
McCain knows full well that bad registrations are simply worthless. They will never translate into actual votes! In addition, he knows full well that preventing people from exercising their right to vote is the real problem, and that his own party is employing such cynical abuses in Democratic precincts in swing states, by purging them off the records, disenfranchising them. In 2000 and 2004 both, it was proportionally a much higher number of Democrats than Republicans who were purged.
His claims have one most certainly transparent goal, however, and that is to plant the myth that Obama is stealing this election. Absurd. Funny, but absurd. We know what stolen elections look like, we saw 2000 and 2004, Florida, Ohio...ring a bell?
The other spine shivering experience I had during this debate was when McCain used the air quotes when talking about women’s health concerns in relation to pregnancy and abortion when the topic of Roe vs Wade came up. McCain says that he believes Roe vs Wade was a mistake, and he would like to see all abortion, even in the case of the mother’s life being at risk from the pregnancy. Imagine you are a 25 year old newlywed, with have a heart condition that you were born with. And you’ve been a good girl and been on birth control to prevent yourself from getting pregnant, because your physician says carrying a baby most likely would be too much strain on your weak little heart and kill you. A month or two ago, you got sick with bronchitis and were prescribed some antibiotics. Antibiotics make the pill less effective. Suddenly, you find yourself pregnant. The physicians all tell you that this pregnancy will cause you to have cardiac arrest and both you and the baby will most likely perish before the birth is successfully completed. John McCain says too damned bad. You’ll just have to buck up and do the best you can for as long as you can, and hopefully, you’ll live. Best case scenario? You’ll be on bedrest and they will induce labor as early as possible, causing the baby to be born before it’s fully developed, putting it at risk for lifelong health conditions, and you may still die from the stress of the delivery.
Maybe John McCain should use air quotes when he talks to my friend from a few years back, who suffered an ectopic pregnancy. That's when the egg implants itself in your fallopian tubes. It can kill you by rupturing your tube and causing you to hemorrhage. Abortion is the only treatment for this situation. She most definitely did not want to abort, her and her husband had tried and tried to get pregnant for nearly a year. But what else is one to do when the baby will not survive and you will die if you don't abort?

Honestly, I'm sick from from it all. I wish we could just start all over with a fresh new cast in Washington.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

For the Dogs & the much missed WWC!

Saturday, Wifester and I took the Sunny-dog and met up with our friends L & N (and their 3 pooches, Reba the doberman, Wiskey the pit-bull mix, and Cha-Cha, the chihuahua ) at the doggie park. It was great fun, but in watching the pups wrestle around and mingle with all the others, promptly and sometimes obsessively sniffing butts, I was struck with the thought that I am certainly grateful that we don't have the same social graces as our K9 counterparts. At least most of us don't.
It was an exciting day and the Sunny-dog is still recovering her energy. She actually left the comfort and protection of Wifester and I and played a bit this time. I call that progress. We'll take every little bit of progress we can muster. The last time we took her there, she sat between the two of us shivering the whole time. Afraid to go play with anyone. This time, she made friends and took it upon herself to be mama-hen to a couple of really cute little puppies that were rambumctious and awfully sweet. If I could have fit them in my pockets, and snuck out without their parent's seeing, they'd of both come home with me, let there be no doube in your mind.
And it got me to thinking. Sunny needs a puppy at home to play with. She really does. I think she'd love to play mama to a little puppy! And besides that, she'll teach the pup all she knows and who better to learn from than the best dog in the world?
I know, I know...I'm just practicing my pitch for Wifester, you understand. If I bat my eyelashes a lot, and say it extra sweetly, it just might work. I'll keep you posted.
On to the WWC!
It's been three weeks since I've participated in the Weekly Words Challenge!( Brought to us by the soon to be married, Tink, of Pickled Beef) If you want to join the WWC posse' go see her, she'll get you in the saddle.
I'm such a slacker. Sorry for the inconsistency and lack of commitment. If you could see the flow charts I'm being asked to make for this horrendous programing class, you'd understand.
This week's words are Me & Them.



Monday, October 13, 2008

Columbus Day Celebration? Think Again...

I'm just gonna re-post this, because it says it all, quite brilliantly, and my fingers are still a little burnt, so typing is somewhat painful.

By Thom Hartmann

If you fly over the country of Haiti on the island of Hispaniola, the island on which Columbus landed, it looks like somebody took a blowtorch and burned away anything green. Even the ocean around the port capital of Port au Prince is choked for miles with the brown of human sewage and eroded topsoil. From the air, it looks like a lava flow spilling out into the sea.
The history of this small island is, in many ways, a microcosm for what's happening in the whole world.

When Columbus first landed on Hispaniola in 1492, virtually the entire island was covered by lush forest. The Taino "Indians" who loved there had an apparently idyllic life prior to Columbus, from the reports left to us by literate members of Columbus's crew such as Miguel Cuneo.

When Columbus and his crew arrived on their second visit to Hispaniola, however, they took captive about two thousand local villagers who had come out to greet them. Cuneo wrote: "When our caravels… where to leave for Spain, we gathered…one thousand six hundred male and female persons of those Indians, and these we embarked in our caravels on February 17, 1495…For those who remained, we let it be known (to the Spaniards who manned the island's fort) in the vicinity that anyone who wanted to take some of them could do so, to the amount desired, which was done."

Cuneo further notes that he himself took a beautiful teenage Carib girl as his personal slave, a gift from Columbus himself, but that when he attempted to have sex with her, she "resisted with all her strength." So, in his own words, he "thrashed her mercilessly and raped her."

While Columbus once referred to the Taino Indians as cannibals, a story made up by Columbus - which is to this day still taught in some US schools - to help justify his slaughter and enslavement of these people. He wrote to the Spanish monarchs in 1493: "It is possible, with the name of the Holy Trinity, to sell all the slaves which it is possible to sell…Here there are so many of these slaves, and also brazilwood, that although they are living things they are as good as gold…"

Columbus and his men also used the Taino as sex slaves: it was a common reward for Columbus' men for him to present them with local women to rape. As he began exporting Taino as slaves to other parts of the world, the sex-slave trade became an important part of the business, as Columbus wrote to a friend in 1500: "A hundred castellanoes (a Spanish coin) are as easily obtained for a woman as for a farm, and it is very general and there are plenty of dealers who go about looking for girls; those from nine to ten (years old) are now in demand."

However, the Taino turned out not to be particularly good workers in the plantations that the Spaniards and later the French established on Hispaniola: they resented their lands and children being taken, and attempted to fight back against the invaders. Since the Taino where obviously standing in the way of Spain's progress, Columbus sought to impose discipline on them. For even a minor offense, an Indian's nose or ear was cut off, se he could go back to his village to impress the people with the brutality the Spanish were capable of. Columbus attacked them with dogs, skewered them with pikes, and shot them.

Eventually, life for the Taino became so unbearable that, as Pedro de Cordoba wrote to King Ferdinand in a 1517 letter, "As a result of the sufferings and hard labor they endured, the Indians choose and have chosen suicide. Occasionally a hundred have committed mass suicide. The women, exhausted by labor, have shunned conception and childbirth… Many, when pregnant, have taken something to abort and have aborted. Others after delivery have killed their children with their own hands, so as not to leave them in such oppressive slavery."

Eventually, Columbus and later his brother Bartholomew Columbus who he left in charge of the island, simply resorted to wiping out the Taino altogether. Prior to Columbus' arrival, some scholars place the population of Haiti/Hispaniola (now at 16 million) at around 1.5 to 3 million people. By 1496, it was down to 1.1 million, according to a census done by Bartholomew Columbus. By 1516, the indigenous population was 12,000, and according to Las Casas (who were there) by 1542 fewer than 200 natives were alive. By 1555, every single one was dead.
This wasn't just the story of Hispaniola; the same has been done to indigenous peoples worldwide. Slavery, apartheid, and the entire concept of conservative Darwinian Economics, have been used to justify continued suffering by masses of human beings.

Dr. Jack Forbes, Professor of Native American Studies at the University of California at Davis and author of the brilliant book "Columbus and Other Cannibals," uses the Native American word wétiko (pronounced WET-ee-ko) to describe the collection of beliefs that would produce behavior like that of Columbus. Wétiko literally means "cannibal," and Forbes uses it quite intentionally to describe these standards of culture: we "eat" (consume) other humans by destroying them, destroying their lands, taking their natural resources, and consuming their life-force by enslaving them either physically or economically. The story of Columbus and the Taino is just one example.

We live in a culture that includes the principle that if somebody else has something we need, and they won't give it to us, and we have the means to kill them to get it, it's not unreasonable to go get it, using whatever force we need to.

In the United States, the first "Indian war" in New England was the "Pequot War of 1636," in which colonists surrounded the largest of the Pequot villages, set it afire as the sun began to rise, and then performed their duty: they shot everybody-men, women, children, and the elderly-who tried to escape. As Puritan colonist William Bradford described the scene: "It was a fearful sight to see them thus frying in the fire and the streams of blood quenching the same, and horrible was the stink and scent thereof; but the victory seemed a sweet sacrifice, and they [the colonists] gave praise therof to God, who had wrought so wonderfully..."

The Narragansetts, up to that point "friends" of the colonists, were so shocked by this example of European-style warfare that they refused further alliances with the whites. Captain John Underhill ridiculed the Narragansetts for their unwillingness to engage in genocide, saying Narragansett wars with other tribes were "more for pastime, than to conquer and subdue enemies."

In that, Underhill was correct: the Narragansett form of war, like that of most indigenous Older Culture peoples, and almost all Native American tribes, does not have extermination of the opponent as a goal. After all, neighbors are necessary to trade with, to maintain a strong gene pool through intermarriage, and to insure cultural diversity. Most tribes wouldn't even want the lands of others, because they would have concerns about violating or entering the sacred or spirit-filled areas of the other tribes. Even the killing of "enemies" is not most often the goal of tribal "wars": It's most often to fight to some pre-determined measure of "victory" such as seizing a staff, crossing a particular line, or the first wounding or surrender of the opponent.

This wétiko type of theft and warfare is practiced daily by farmers and ranchers worldwide against wolves, coyotes, insects, animals and trees of the rainforest; and against indigenous tribes living in the jungles and rainforests. It is our way of life. It comes out of our foundational cultural notions. So it should not surprise us that with the doubling of the world's population over the past 37 years has come an explosion of violence and brutality, and as the United States runs low on oil, we are now fighting wars in oil-rich parts of the world.

That is, after all, our history, which we celebrate on Columbus Day. It need not be our future.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Friday, October 10, 2008

Crispy Cookies & The Blame Game

First, I'll start out by saying I'm sorry for such sporadic posting lately. My new class is atrocious and I'm struggling to maintain my GPA.
On top of that, there has been turmoil at work; my boss was fired without warning. She was a good boss. No, let me reiterate, a GREAT boss. Probably one of the best bosses I've ever worked for in my life. It was shocking, and scary. My company is closely related to the financial industry, and with all the shit hitting the fan, I expected us to have some fall out, but...
Anyways, on top of that, I was assured that my position was safe, in fact, I was asked to take on some extra responsibilities and am now being trained on some new software and will be doing a different part of the job, in addition to my current stack of stuff. I don't mind the extras, it tells me that they see me as capable and competent. It's just been, well, hectic.
The icing on the cake is last night, as I prepared to cook dinner for the Wifester and myself, I did the stupidest thing. No, I didn't cast an early vote for McCain. OK, so I did the penultimate intelligent thing. Here, let me show you what I mean:

Ah, feel the burn? I sure as hell did!
Let me tell you about it. See, we have a stove with a wonky burner, in which I mean, the coiley-eye part tends to pop out of the socket thingy and wobble, making it awkward to cook on. It truly drives me nuts. So being somewhat hurried, as I was last night, I turned the burner on, turned my back on the stove and grabbed a pan, turned back around and then noticed that the burner was lopsided, and promptly reached down to plug it firmly into place...That's when I heard the sound of me, being cooked! Immediately after that, the synapses had aparently fired enough to signals to finally tell me "This HURTS LIKE HELL!" I peeled my hand off of the burner and commenced to littering the kitchen with expletatives that would make Andrew Dice Clay blush. These are the times that I'm most appreciative to be married to a nurse.
So here I sit, hunting and pecking, like a keyboard novice. Fingers throbbing. I need a flat top stove. Or a gas range.
Yeah. So on to what has me ranting today...
I was reading an article from the Boston Globe, about how the Republicans are trying to pin voter fraud cases on Obama. It discusses the ACORN group saying that they have come under fire for irregularities in at least eight states, including Nevada, where voter cards for the starting lineup of the Dallas Cowboys were turned in to local election officials. They also say that McCain's campaign" has been trumpeting links between the organization and Obama dating back 13 years". The link? When Obama was a lawyer, in private practice in 1995, he and two other lawyers from his firm represented ACORN in a successful suit that forced the state of Illinois to comply with a federal law that made it easier to register to vote.

Never did they mention that on four occasions in the past when ACORN was accused of voter fraud, there were 300 persons registered as Republican voters posing as ACORN employees across the country turning in obviously falsified voter registration cards bearing such names as "Jive Turkey" and "Colonel Sanders". They also neglected to inform their readers that in battleground states, thousands of registrations are being purged for no legitimate reason. The majority of which, were the registrations of Democrats.
The truly sickening partg is that these people are throwing up Red Flags and claiming acts of sabotage that were actually conducted by themselves, then trying to place blame on someone else. It doesn't surprise me though. Just makes me want to puke.
And everytime I hear this Ayers connection talk? I want to yell, "but McCain's Veep is sleeping with a member of an anti-American seperatist party who wants to secede from the United States and who's motto is "Alaska First" and Sarah Palin herself, spoke at and welcomed this group earlier this year. Telling them what a great job they were doing". But that's never brought up. She's the one with America's best interest at heart. Sure.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The National Debt is too Big for it's Britches?

Recall in September 2000, during President Clinton’s last year in office, the National Debt Clock had the reverse problem. It was shut down because “it started ticking in the opposite direction, shaving off roughly $30 a second.”

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Great Schlep

The Great Schlep aims to have Jewish grandchildren visit their grandparents in Florida, educate them about Obama, and therefore swing the crucial Florida vote in his favor. Don’t have grandparents in Florida? Not Jewish? No problem! You can still become a schlepper and make change happen in 2008, simply by talking to your relatives about Obama.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

I've Gone Pink!

Thanks to Reb, who told me about going pink for the month of October, in honor of breast cancer month, I've decided to follow suit and do the same. I guess we've all been touched by someone in our lives who has suffered this terrible illness, and we all wish we could have spared them the pain, suffering, and fear that they faced. 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. ONE in EIGHT.
I'm not a research scientist, and I am no chemist, so working with what I can, the only thing left for me to do to help fight this killer of women is to promote education and treatment. I firmly believe that well informed people make much better decisions and are less susceptible to physical ailments and are more apt to seek medical treatment sooner than those who are inadequately informed. When breast cancer is found early, the 5-year survival rate is 98%. That's huge!

The National Breast Cancer Foundation has a great tool for helping you set up an early detection plan.

Here's an interesting Podcast on the subject of how politics affect cancer.

And here's some info. on breast cancer screening and genetic screening.

I hope you'll check it out, and possibly consider going PINK this month too!