commented on I'm Triggered By Your Triggers
Thanks Danielle; very cogent. A lot of material discussed in college classrooms is traumatic and brings up painful emotions; not only stories of rape and personal violence, but the holocaust, atomic bombing, factory farming, current events in Syria, the history of American slavery, genocide of Native Americans... We desperately need adults to learn about history and live in the real world that arises in the context of that history. Slapping "trigger" warnings on stories related to personal abuse begs the question; what about the big picture? If you can't read about bulimia or domestic violence, how do you deal with information about Hiroshima or Sand Creek or our prison system? People need to get appropriate support, and classroom cultures need to include supportive relationships and human acknowledgement that yes, this shit is hard to take, and yes, we all need to know about it.
commented on Fifteen Years Left Before Machines Outsmart You
Unless the rising oceans and increasingly violent storms smash the servers to bits. Techno-triumphalism ignores chemistry, physics, history, and human nature. We inhabit a brief moment of fancy machines. Enjoy it while it lasts.
commented on Seattle Schools Hates Joy and Happiness, Refuses to Close for Super Bowl Parade
Schools are for everyone and should remain open. Parents who want their kids to join in a personally meaningful event should do that. Many parents, of course, will be at work without the option of attending this parade. The point of sport fandom (like other kinds) is mainly the pleasure of group/tribal bonding. Not everyone wants to or is able to join in, but I hope you'all enjoy your party.
commented on "I Need Some Pretty Things"
View of the city from the parking lot of St. Mark's cathedral on capitol hill.
The Arboretum; winter garden NOW, rhododendron alley in the late spring, by the ship canal in the fall.
Island Quilter (Vashon Is.) on a gray day; over 7000 bolts of quilting fabric in amazing varieties: batik, Japanese-shiny-gold, old-fashioned little flowers, psychedelic whales, etc.
The walk west from Ballard Locks to Golden Gardens, views of water/city/eagles/trees.
commented on Capitalist Car Production Will Solve Nothing
Mudede got it exactly right. The embodied energy in the new car is far more than the car will "save" in its lifetime, compared to an old small car -- the latter might burn a bit more gas per mile, but the energy to build it has already been expended. The energy cost of the car is mostly in the car itself, rather than the gas/electricity to run it. The same is true for phones & laptops, etc.
Most of us have great difficulty perceiving the embodied energy in our buildings, gadgets, clothes, food. Marketing products as "green" further obscures this reality.
commented on Don't Worry, They Hired a Black Lady
Feminist Thoughts of Ryan Gosling is the funniest thing ever made for the intertubes. And you Make Things with Yarn! Oh, joy. I'm amazed that the staff of the Stranger had the wit to hire you. A good omen for the new year.
Nov 27, 2013
commented on Allow Me to Ruin Your Thanksgiving...
It is horrifying. The widespread use of Roundup Ready corn leads directly to the widespread use of Roundup/glyphosate, which leads directly to the loss of weed species like milkweed, which pollinators depend on. Much of the Midwest, the great Mississippi watershed, has been turned into a food desert for insects -- which means no butterflies, no bees, no birds. The president is deep in with Monsanto, and we just saw how far Monsanto and other chem. companies will go to prevent consumers from becoming aware of what we are eating, which wld be necessary if we were to change what we eat. So, on account of our human population, our reliance on chemical agriculture, energy appetite, the demands we place on the earth to produce not only the bare necessities but ample junk food, computers, and new clothes -- we are creating the sixth great extinction. Monarchs. Southern Resident Orcas. and many other species, not all charismatic megafauna, are going down.
This is the wicked problem that we face. It's global as well as local. We are all implicated, no matter how bad we feel about the monarchs or how frantically we call the president or sign petitions. (This MacBook took a lot of resources to produce.) How we respond to this wicked problem is going to determine whether humans will be able to live decent or half-decent lives on earth in a couple of generations. So far, we're not doing well.
Is the culture of the internet -- comments, arguments, click-on petitions, shopping, gossip, and porn -- helping humanity come to terms with this crisis? Or distracting us from it? How about the culture of the Slog and the Stranger?
It's a lot easier to read about other people's sex lives than to deal with the crisis coming at us. I often wish this publication was more in touch with that reality.
Oct 30, 2013
commented on No on 522: Label GMOs, But Not This Way
To quote a local organic farmer: If GE foods offered anything that was useful to consumers, corporations would DEMAND the right to label it prominently on the front. But they can only sell GE food by concealing its origins. People have many good reasons to choose non-GE foods, including health, environment, economy, social justice, seed preservation, farmer protection, spiritual values, and just plain orneryness. We have the right to know what we are eating.
Prediction: after 522 passes by a few thousand votes, Monsanto et al will file a lawsuit against it by November 15.