Everywhere in our lives, we get the chance to choose.
Go down any supermarket aisle - you'll find an incredible selection of milk.
You can get whole milk, 2% milk, low-fat milk or skim milk. Organic milk, and milk with extra Vitamin D.
There's flavored milk— chocolate, strawberry or vanilla - and it doesn't even taste like milk.
They even make milk for people who can't drink milk.
Shouldn't parents have that kind of choice in schools?
Aside from including vanilla as one of the off-flavor milks, the racial coding is pretty clear.* The best milk, the milk of true Americans, is white like them. Can't you see orderly classrooms of Caucasian children with shiny white teeth and well brushed hair, raising their hands eagerly to answer questions about math and science? None of that flavored stuff for them! Isn't this a crazy sort of separate-but-unequal metaphor? Not wanting to mix your milks into some sort of mess? Coming from Jeb Bush, who I am sure is not a racially prejudiced person, this speech is remarkable. I can't believe he wrote it himself.
I think the party has abandoned all principles and now cares only about getting Romney in the White House. Since it is well known that Romney has 0% of the African-American vote, they have decided to pander to their racist base. Asian-Americans don't even count in this equation, since from the Republican point of view they barely exist, except as a model minority that doesn't cause any problems and can't influence the election either way. I guess they have also written off Latinos.
How whiter than white, brighter than bright, the conventioneers were. I'm white myself, mostly, and admit to having been in a lot of all white, or mostly all white, situations in my life. But I did not claim that there were black people present on those occasions. Clint Eastwood brought invisible Obama up to the stage to exchange insults, and the white crowd, with no sense of how this would play on national television, roared its approval. A delegate from Alabama assured Amy Goodman that there were a lot of blacks there from his state (alternates), and yet not a black person was in sight. Now that's deluded! Those magical blacks, who can be present yet invisible! Amazing!
Karl Rove, the master of meanness, is now back in charge of the Republican message. Democracy Now caught him schmoozing in a sky box with billionaire David Koch, who is bankrolling the party to the tune of millions.**
Democracy Now wins the prize for its coverage of the Republican convention. Amy Goodman was down there with her mike, asking questions and getting several illuminating interviews. I made the mistake of live streaming DN in the early a.m. and am now very tired. Oh well, it was certainly worth it. If you have loads of time, watch the entire two hours of Friday programming. I'm glad I did, because now I really understand the nature of this campaign and how it's playing out on the Republican side.
Of course these delegates did not know who Amy Goodman was, or they would not have been so forthcoming or even let her get as close to Koch as she did. Her relative anonymity, combined with her skill and persistence as an interviewer, provided several moments of illumination.
She describes the convention arena as "cavernous." So a lot was going on that demanded the alertness of reporters and photographers on the scene. Being there live must have been quite different from what viewers saw in their homes, a different quality of experience. By getting out on the floor and highlighting certain events that were not on the main stage, the Democracy Now crew created a coherent counter-narrative to the official Republican one. This is an art.
I think the press has been doing a great job of covering this convention. I'm getting what feels to me like a real inside look at the workings of the party. It's exclusive. It's white. It's loud. It's mean spirited. It's out of control.
New arrival on Twitter: Invisible Obama!!!
Did I just get invisible credit for taking out Bin Laden?
What a fool I have been. Of course a person like me should be a Republican! I'm white, my social security is assured, I have, with my husband, a lot of property and other assets, my husband, still working, makes good money, and although we do pay out more than we would like to in federal and other taxes we have no debts. We wouldn't mind paying less for taxes than we do, though, because a buck is a buck and better in my pocket than the government's.
I'm in no danger of pregnancy at my age! But if women get pregnant and have babies why, exactly, is that my concern? They didn't have to have them. (This is my true Republican position: only the rabid base is anti-abortion. I say that it's foolish for any woman to have a baby and expect me to help her support it.)
I certainly can't be bothered about how other people take care of their
kids or the schools they go to. My kids are grown up. Why, then, should I
have to pay to educate the children of other people? I don't have anything in common with young people and kids these days anyhow and don't care what happens to them as long as they don't bother me. Unless they will work for me for what I consider to be reasonable wages.
Anyway, Why should I care about people who have not had the luck, brains, or whatever it takes to get to my station in life? Haven't I proven through my advantageous position that I am among the deserving? A little respect here!
I am feeling so much better already. My mood is lifting, the guilt is going away. Who cares, when I shop, what conditions the goods I buy were manufactured under, where they were manufactured, where the raw materials came from and what wages the workers who made the items were paid? If it's what I want and the price is right, that's all I need to know or care about.
And why clean my own house? Do my own cooking? Why take care of my own yard? I can find people to do that very cheaply. I could eat out all the time if I wanted to, It's easily affordable for me. The price of food may go up, but I hardly notice that; it is not a big part of my budget. Cleaning people, yard people, waitpersons, service people of all sorts: they should be delighted to work to make life easy and comfortable for me.
You have to keep an eye on them, though, since they get out of hand so easily. You can't trust anyone these days. That's why we need good policing of crime and protection of my property. There are charities that can look after the hopeless and helpless, so I don't have to.They shouldn't have to steal to get by.
Of course it's too bad that some people are poor. They should work harder. They need to get jobs instead of sitting around thinking they can be on easy street like me.
It took me a while to figure this out. I had an inkling, but this interview with an Abraham Lincoln look-alike delegate confirms it. Drunk or drugged women are fair game. They are the same as prostitutes; that is, by putting themselves in a vulnerable position they are asking for it. This is a belief that goes way way back. I'm now reading a 1913 novel, The Lodger, by Marie Belloc Lowndes, wherein the rape-murder victims of a serial killer are described as "inebriated" at the time of their victimization. The equation of drunkenness and prostitution is clear; I think in this novel this was used as a euphemism for prostitute. Forever we have made a distinction between good women, who behave themselves and deserve protection, and bad women who get what they deserve. The burden of proof is always on the woman and is sky high for women of color on that score.
These are not new ideas but sincerely held beliefs on the part of many, and they are slow to change, because they have such a long pedigree. Honoring the fetus is newer, however. And seeing little fetal feet on Abe Lincoln's lapel is laughable.
Now I can go back to reading and planning for our trip to Peru. Thinking about all those museums in Lima and the great food I intend to eat there. Those seem to be the two main things to do in that city. Our friend Mary has done a fine job of planning this trip. She is good at figuring out schedules, not a one to play it as it lays, which is probably good at our age. There was a time when we would take off into the blue, but that's for the young, I think.
All four of us have a lot of interests in common, too, especially wanting to look at art, pottery, ruins and such. And hiking, as much as our bodies will permit, around Cuzco and Titicaca. And seeing the southern sky!
Mary's husband Jim is intent on fishing in Lake Titicaca. I'm wondering how we're going to do with the altitude. We have pills from the doc that are supposed to help, but I intend to take it very slow.We have really been working on our fitness.
How fortunate we are, to be sure, to be embarking shortly on such a fine adventure at our ages! I'm the oldest at 73 and Jim the youngest, only 60.
I once wrote a piece about how few American
war dead there are as a result of Afghanistan and Iraq in comparison to
previous engagements of this size. A huge part of this reduction is due
to amazing advances in battlefield medicine, and a big part of that is
getting someone to a hospital as fast as possible. The Pentagon is
incredible at doing that, at undertaking these kinds of logistical
operations. The result is that more people survive horrible injuries
that would have killed them before.
The story of the crisis is similar. When
they say, “It could have been much worse,” it is true. That’s not
bullshit. It really could have been the Great Depression; genuine mass
panic and misery on a similar scale. The technocrats, the elites, did
stop that. But now we have this body politic that, instead of being
dead, has a horrible disfiguring wound.
I'm hearing something a little different from everyday punditry here. He's saying that we have been badly wounded in this country but thanks to modern methods of care have survived after a fashion.
He also says we need to tax carbon emissions. People need incentives to stop using so much energy. We had the money to put in solar hot water and electricity, and it will all be paid off soon. We are looking at years of free energy after that. It would not be accurate to say we have a small carbon footprint, however. No one who flies can make that claim. Our condo in Seattle is small and very energy efficient, though. And considering how well we live, we don't consume much energy. Many people use more energy than we do and have a low standard of living. And here's the key: get people to a high standard of living that does not involve using enormous amounts of non-renewable resources.
And stop practically giving away energy in the form of tax breaks for retired people who could well afford to pay full price for their energy needs but get low rates because they have "no income." That is a scam that I just heard about that retired Californians in places like Palm Springs can take advantage of. If they are good at hiding their assets, they can game the system while others struggle to meet basic requirements for existence and get blamed for taking food stamps and unemployment.
Problems, problems. I dropped my Kindle reader and killed it and am being forced to read actual books! I don't like the Fire for reading; it's too bright. We just ordered a new Kindle, and I'm hoping it gets here soon!
Also, the capchas on some blogs have gotten so hard to read that I can't get my comments through.