nwhiker: (Default)
Ugh. As if we didn't have a zillion reasons to hate him, but the blatant stupidity and cruelty of Trump's actions on DACA are just... beyond the pale.

Let's assume that you want to throw the book at illegal immigrants. I do think that is ill-advised, but there is some minor justification in that "they broke the law!". Though, again, I think we need them, so legalization is a better long term plan.

But.

The so-called Dreamers. They came here as children. Children. They were not responsible for being here. They did nothing wrong, and if the data on them as a group is anything to go by, they are doing a lot of things right, as adults, and young adults.

This is flat out stupid and ridiculous. Continue DACA or, even better, give it up, and just grant them US citizenship.

The man truly is putrid scum, and Jeff Sessions is no better.

OMG

21 Aug 2017 22:05
nwhiker: (Default)
That was the most amazing thing I've seen in my life.

Plus ideal eclipse viewing for introverts: Dh, the kids, and me, and.... nobody anywhere near us.
nwhiker: (Default)
I.Want.Rain.

I am so fucking done with this horrid weather. I want grey skies and beautiful, cool WET rain.

And clean air along with it.

(No, I don't like summer, and the smoke from the BC wildfires is making it exponentially worse.)
nwhiker: (Default)
At this point, liberals are acting like idiots, going on and on about how many people the Senate bill is likely to kill, who is going to lose health insurance and probably die, how much more dangerous it will be a woman giving, how having a disability shouldn't be death sentence etc.

But here is the thing that they are eliding.

Those deaths? ARE A FEATURE OF THE BILL NOT A BUG.

Survival of the... fittest, the richest, the strongest, the male-ist.

The rest of us? Eh. Who cares?

The whole plan of attach of pointing out how many people will be hurt by the bill is wasted time and effort. The Republicans don't care. The rest of us have no power.
nwhiker: (Default)
Jeff Sessions testimony in shorter format:



I mean, really? He lied, stonewalled, and pretended not to remember. If his memory is that bad, he needs Alzheimer's care, not an AG position.

Comey is scum, who cheated to get Trump elected, but he is not a liar. Sessions, OTOH, is.
nwhiker: (Default)
I bought an iRobot Roomba a few weeks back. This was a second try with Roombas, the one I had many years ago was.... ok, but a pain in the butt, didn't really clean all that well, got stuck routinely etc. But I figured that hey, a decade later, and from Costco with their excellent return policy, gotta try again.

So we did.

AC set it up last Saturday, I hadn't had time, and set it roaming the house.

The cat ignored the Roomba. Linnea, however, finds it totally freaking and hates.

We knew we'd have to name it, and tossed around a few ideas. In totally sexist fashion, I was planning on a male name.

I was cooking. And the Roomba came and tried to get around my feet. And failed. And tried again. And failed again. And wandered off a few feet and then... came back, with a vengeance (or so it seemed to me), resolute and intent on getting to the area behind my feet.

And so named herself. Elizabeth. Because she persisted.
nwhiker: (Default)
Ultimately, the South did have the right idea.

Of course, goes without saying etc, for the wrong reasons, since theirs were based on abhorrent beliefs about slavery and the humanity of, umm, humans.

But where they were right was in what they decided to do.

When it became apparent to them that The Other Side no longer shared (*) their basic beliefs, that the other side no longer held the same tenets as to what the fundamentals of society and civilization should be, they opted for out. They decided to leave a county that no longer held to their ideals (repeating: their ideals were despicable.) (*)If the rest of the country ever agreed with those ideals or just went along to form the United States is something I'm sure those of you who once took US history know, but that I don't. The point holds that the North was no longer willing to stand by and allow the abomination of slavery to continue.

We're at the same crossroads as the South. Half the county, maybe even more, no longer holds the same fundamental beliefs. The other side is so blinded by hate of the non-deserving other that they will vote to deny said other health care, access to food, education (looking at you, Betsy DeVos), the fundamental right to their own bodily autonomy, and freedom from oppression and fear .

By "We" right now, I mean blue states. Yes, there are pockets of resistance in a sea of red (Austin, Ann Arbor, Madison...), but at this point, red states have decided collectively that they loooove hate too much and want to be free to hate pridefully more than they want to see their follow citizens fed, healthy, educated, and able to fully participate in society.

We no longer even share a common belief in fucking science. There isn't much to be gained in discussions with people who think scientists are lying, don't know what they're talking about, and really, to use a favourite Asimov quote of mine, we've gotten to this point: Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'

So maybe it is time to start talking about parting ways. The West Coast, the Northeast, Minnesota and Illinois, maybe as one country, maybe as several, but it's time to start thinking of whether we are better together or apart.

At this point, I would vote in favour of "apart". I don't see the point is trying to persuade states who voted for, and continue to support and approve of Trump and the obstructionist Republicans that our ideas are better and grounded in reality. That they help people, even the people who vote against them.

The states that voted against an agenda that would help everyone are, in general, the taker states, the ones that take more from the same federal government that they are trying to weaken. The blue states give more in taxes than we take back, and in return, we get to be governed by a bunch of incompetent hateful mouth breathers that the "takers" voted it. This is a ridiculous situation, and one that should not continue.

It's time to go, West Coast people. Let Iowa and Mississippi and Wisconsin and Michigan and Louisiana and Florida and the rest of them wallow in their hatred. Take our marbles and see what we can do when we're not being dragged down by states who oppose progress and deny reality.
nwhiker: (Default)
Life being what it is, I'm all about catchall posts that just get me writing. I like writing.

-- Annoyed: Linnea is supposed to be back for a mandatory! band camp a week before school starts. The reason? The band serves at the pleasure of the GD fucking football team and being in band = being in marching band. I'm not a fan of marching band, I detest football and don't really want my kid to associate in any way with that brain-killing brutality that claims to be a sport. She's upset, because mandatory. I'm pissed because how the fuck do they put something mandatory the week before school starts and not tell you at registation? (*) But here's the worse part: we're supposed to be on vacation that week. Our plans (only vaguely set from a reservation standpoint, but well set from an internal planning on what we scheduled when for the rest of the summer) start with a trip to Bend on Aug 21 for the eclipse, and then move southward from there. Because of the eclipse whose timing or location I cannot change, :-), we are rather stuck going on vacation from the 21st to the 31st. (*) We only found out because the high school band booster club came to the Middle School for the last concert, and handed out information on the "music camp".

-- Again, I despise marching band. And football.

-- 30 people for a bbq on Sunday. I think I'm planning too much food. Alas, suspecting that we're going to be eating leftovers for the rest of the summer will not stop me from making too much food.

-- Tomorrow will be the 12 anniversary of my dad's death. I don't want to talk about it.

-- James Comey is a fuck up and I hope he rots in hell. He fucking did everything he could to get Trump elected, and pretends to be all high-minded about that, and then acts OMG shocked that Trump is a pos scumbucket. That said, despite him being an unethical hack, I don't think he's a liar. He wins the credibility contest. The hearings were interesting yesterday. Of course nothing will come of it because no matter what Trump did/does the Republicans don't care, they've got all the power. It's all just an academic exercise. That said, I still have a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that we have no legal or constitutional recourse for a crooked election.

-- Britain. Yowsa on May and her electoral fuck up. I wish we had a parliamentary system.

-- This tweet is just too cute. Alas, I can't figure out how to properly embed tweets on dreamwidth, so I'm just posting a photo.



Kitty pawpads as teddy bears



-- Posting this now, may add to it later.
nwhiker: (Default)
This is well worth the 19 minutes to watch it.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/xuCn8ux2gbs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
nwhiker: (Default)
The feeling that dominates my world right now is the pure, burning hatred I feel for the GOP after their passage of the AHCA.

I wish them death, after unrelenting pain. And I'd spit in their faces.

I cannot even fathom the cruelty of these people. I'd say they are animals, but most animals treat their basic grouping better.

Pure evil, pure unmitigated evil.
nwhiker: (Default)
It kinda blows my mind that at the end of the 8 years of Trump's two terms (yes, he will be re-elected), we will probably have a 7-2 conservative majority in the Supreme Court.
nwhiker: (sunset)
I posted a bit over a year ago about an online friend getting real-life published.

I bought her book, Runtime, reviewed on goodreads, but apparently forgot to post that here:


The story was excellent, and for all it's a novella, the main character especially was well described. You never really feel sorry for the Marmeg because you know she's going to get back up and do what she needs to do, her resilience was one of the best parts of the book, and felt very real to me. She was a kick ass character with a race to win! The race part was exciting and the description of the Sierras in winter and the main character's reaction too them was very real.

Where this book shone? In the world building. S.B. Divya created a world that reflects some of the deeper cultural divides we currently face, and treats them lightly but with assurance. She touches on ethics, and on the personal cost of ethics, especially for someone who has everything to lose by acting in an ethical manner. This world is a world of bioengineering, and profound social prejudice, of cybernetics and new gender identity. You get a strong sense of this world through the story itself, not through long paragraphs explaining this that, and something more, so the world building is seamless, part of the story, but never THE story.

I really liked the book, and I hope Marmeg's story isn't over yet! However, even if it is, I do hope that the author will revisit this world and set other stories there. It seems like an interesting place, and I'd like to know more about it.



And, guess what? OMG, this is exciting!

Nebula Award nominees were out yesterday and look here:



I am SO excited for her!

So go read it if you already haven't! :-)
nwhiker: (sunset)



The last one made me cry.

I know 2016 hasn't statistically been worse than any other year, but maybe because of my age, and thus the age of my idols, it's hitting harder. Plus Trump.

ETA: the tweet formatting isn't working, sigh.
nwhiker: (Auturmn at Cottage Lake)
It's not the world order, just the US, though of course the world will bear the consequences of our choices, and for that, I am sorry.

I'd like to say that this will be a coherently written post, but it will not. It will be thoughts and fears, linked by one common thread: yes, it has in fact come to this. A new world order, a nation divided, or, if you prefer, we're stuck on a journey to hell in a basket of deplorables.

And deplorable they are. They are haters, they are racists and bigots, misogynist and petty small minded gun fondling putrid scum. Most of them are stupid. Most of them are white. They represent the worst of the United States, indeed they represent the worst of humanity, and there are more of them than there are of us. Or at least more strategically placed them than us.

We underestimate hate. We always do, over and over, as humans. We underestimated it in Europe in the 1930s, in the Middle East, during the genocide in Rwanda, more benignly from a human-life cost, in Brexit.

We need to give up the fiction that Wisconsin, and Michigan are "blue states". They are not, they have not been for at least a decade, electing Republicans to state-wide offices, and in the case of WI, failing to recall a law-breaking right-wing governor. They are red states, inhabited by bigoted, racist, sexist, envious, stupid people.

There is no country divided. There are a few states with large enough liberal population centers to "hold", but we are less and less. The West Coast. Parts of the NE, though clearly not Pennsylvania. We are not divided, instead, this slim band of land on the west of the Western coastal states I live on is now an anomaly, a very small component in a nation of haters, as are the states of the northeast.

We will look back ten years from now, and John Roberts will be called a liberal, and Alito a moderate. Think about that, too. Perspectives will shift, and like Nixon and the Clean Water Act, we will marvel that a Republican appointed such progressive judges.

Single party rule is our future in both the short, and the long term. There are no checks and balances left in this country. Trump's worst ideas, backed up a House of Representatives with no morals or decency, no regard for the poor, women, minorities, the environment, a Senate there to rubber-stamp any judge, no matter how radical, Trump can scrounge up from the bottom of the tea (party) barrel. Judges who will fight to unite Church and State, who will fight for control of women's reproductive choices, of judges will will further decimate the voter's act, who will rule against minorities and immigrants. Judges who will push us towards a white Christian theocracy facade hiding the kleptocracy behind.

Sanders would not have done any better. He might have connected with some of the white "disaffected" jerks, but I don't think he could ever appeal to their slimy core. And he did not connect with minorities. His coalition would have been different, but not any bigger. The problem is not Clinton or Sanders or Biden, had he chosen to run. It is that core of hatred, that cold hard pure cruelty that has replaced any human decency that half the country might have once had.

Democrats, and the "liberal elite" are hated, and perhaps since the nineties, we've been painted as "not real Americans". We should not, they think, have a say in this country, because we have beliefs that are larger than guns, god, and whatever pablum they've been fed this month. The other issue, and also the part of the reason that Sanders wouldn't have done any better, is the profound resentment those people harbor. There is a new economy and it's based on brains. And they lack them. Sanders, like Clinton, liberals in general represent that forward looking society of the future, based on technology, open to the world, and embracing science. They're too stupid to participate in that society, so they'll break it instead, and they've elected a person to do that.

And that lack of belief in science and technology as solution to the very real problems our planet faces could, in fact, be the final straw that finally tips us over into environmental disaster. We're close now. We'll be there.

Over the past decade and more, my effort and money has been going to protect women, and women's reproductive choices. That is not, however, where Trump will do the worse damage. That is the environment, and the public lands of the west. The push towards giving control of those lands to the states will be accelerated and I expect that to happen. States will not have the resources to manage those lands, and I expect we will see privatization and selling off of the more valuable ones, as well as destruction in the form of "resource management" in the others. Cliven Bundy and his ilk have won.

I am done, today, in a way I never have before. I can't cry, I have no tears. I have no real idea of what do to next. My heart breaks at the realization that the best thing I can do for my children is to tell them to get the fuck out of this country, and to help them do that. I hate the thought, but how do you reconcile bringing up children to be kind, compassionate human beings, forward thinking, accepting of differences and of "others" and then telling them to live in a country build on hate?

Hate wins. We often forget it, willfully blind perhaps, but hate always wins.
nwhiker: (heart)
As a country, we are delusional. To the point that it is truly harming us, because it allows for people not to see the real issues, and instead focus on the strawmen erected by the 1%.

See: these (interactive) polling results from CNN: What it takes to get ahead

The world may be flat these days, but the path to success differs around the globe. In some countries, education and hard work are enough. In others, connections and bribes play a big role. Pew Research surveyed people and asked them which factors are absolutely necessary to get ahead in their nation.


73% of Americans think it takes hard work to get ahead, and only 18% think that belonging to a wealthy family is necessary.

It is to weep.

I won't even address the fact that only 14% of us think that being a man is necessary. But then again, I also won't address Satya Nadella's inane comments about oh hai, women, good karma is NOT asking for a raise and waiting for it to come to you!

We are truly screwed if such a small percentage of our population has realised that, at this time in history, the decks has been totally dealt against us, and that being born into wealth is truly the only mostly reliable path to it.

We so love the execeptions, the teen mom who goes on to Harvard (most are stuck in poverty, never able to move up in the world), the African American man who gets an education and ends up in a position of wealth and power despite a childhood in abject poverty, the proverbial immigrant off the boat with no money who ends up building an empire. They make good stories, wonderful (I'm sure) novels, but they don't make for good social policy, and that is what we do here. We make -or rather we allow the powerful to make- decisions and choices for our nation that name being exceptionally bright, driven, and lucky (fex) the expected median.
nwhiker: (peo-vangogh)
So those small-minded little assholes shut down government. Which was their goal all along. As someone said elsewhere: this is a feature, not a bug. They want to destroy government, not just shrink it.

In two weeks, the United States of America will not have voted to raise the dept ceiling, and Obama will either have to let the US be in default, yeah, not going to happen, or bypass them, which will, to say the least, enrage their pea-brained little maniacs. They will then start impeachment proceedings.

I expect that any Dem elected as long as the Tea Party is in power will also face impeachment charges. They decided when Clinton was elected that no democrat was really elected and that, by definition, Democrats are usurping the power that legitimately belongs to a Republican. Will always, should always legitimately belong to a Republican.

There is no longer, for many people, the concept of a legitimately elected Democratic official. The end result of this being repeated over and over, I think, is a vague perception in the country that, well, really, Republicans are the Real Americans, and Democrats... who?

They cemented this perception by impeaching Clinton, taking away Gore's victory, and now by denying Obama, well, anything, and possibly impeaching him later.

This is not going to get better. I doubt we will take up arms as happened in the Civil War, but this country is divided in a way not seen since then, and I don't see a path forward for us.

[ETA] I do not deny that there is certainly an element of racism in their approach to Obama. Can a OMG BLACK MAN be legitimate? Of course not. But I think that is just part of it, that is provides an even better excuse in the back of whatever little minds these scum might have. I think the concept of a Democrat as a legitimately elected official is what is under attack.

[More ETA] Charlie Pierce nails in a terrifying piece: The Reign Of Morons Is Here.
nwhiker: (heart)
OMG. Laughing in a horrified manner, or horrified in an amused manner at this one.

Puting under a cut because of images... )
nwhiker: (heart)
I've posted this before, but feel the need to post it again. A holiday that makes a good portion of the people it's supposed to celebrate feel bad isn't a great holiday in my book. Every year I try to decide which I hate worse, Mother's Day or Valentine's Day and I come up blank. I think I loathe them both equally.

[...]

But can I just state that I still detest Mother's Day?

I feel so guilty about that. I don't enjoy the attention, or the whole freaking concept of it. It's so not me. I just... don't get it.

I mean, I love my kids, I love being their mother, but Mother's Day? Bzzzt!

I think part of it is that it is a day that is made to celebrate one facet of some women's identity, to the exclusion of all others. And people will be out there today, a tear in their eye, talking about mother's and mother's work and never EVER freaking mentioning that all the while we glorify this mythical mother, we cut funding for the real mothers, make it harder for them to get the help they need. We make motherhood a punishment for having sex. We refuse to acknowledge lesbian mothers as families, by not letting them get married. Mothers have fewer opportunities in the workplace, we mock them with the 'mom-' (mom-hair, mom-car, mom-jeans, mom-whatever) construct, and contrast "regular" moms with MILFs (dear god, how I hate that), and Britain's "yummy mummies" (I hate that even more).

So yeah, Happy Mother's Day to all those of you who did it right, who are straight, and married, and wealthy enough to not need any type of government aid. Because when we say Happy Mother's Day, we mean them, not the lesbians, the poor, the single. Bah.

Motherhood is a reality for many of us, but it's not a requirement for being a woman, a contributing member of society, and I'm sorry that it seems like this is the only facet of womanhood that gets celebrated.

However... Happy Mother's Day to Everyone who wants to lay claim to the day for whatever reason, kids, cats, dogs, nieblings, whatever, whomever.
nwhiker: (Default)
We were in the performing arts center. There was a short performance/final for some of the kids taking music classes, as well as a very nice computer show of art work.

Perry was in world drumming this quarter -he loved it- so his class performed, which was pretty cool.

There was the 5/6th grade choir, and the flamenco class (a PE credit, but a few brave volunteers came to grace the Fine Arts department's event) danced, and a few of the various orchestras did short pieces. A nice school event.

There were some people next to me chatting with some people behind me. The conversation got a bit general and a few people who were not involved in the initial conversation joined in. Including me.

There was some confusion as to if R74 had passed, since last they'd checked, the Seattle Times still had it in the "too close to call" column.

Because it's their 19th anniversary in Dec and they'd like to get married then. Or the weekend after.

And I was able to tell them that the opponents had conceded it was going to pass, and that the Seattle Times had called it passed. Even if all the votes won't be counted for a while (we're at 76% now. Even Florida is doing better). One other women confirmed my information.

So they will be able to get married. As one said to the other, "For better, for worse, and you know all the worse by now."

And of the 8 people on that little group, 5 of whom didn't know the others more than by sight, from what I can tell, 7 of us were crying. Dh managed not to, but he took my hand and squeezed it, and smiled.
nwhiker: (Default)
Remember a few years back, it was SHARK ATTACKS?!

Well, the story of this summer is going to be FLESH EATING BACTERIA!

Yeah, I know, they've done it before, but they have a personable, very beautiful young woman fighting the disease right now, and another beautiful slightly older woman doing the same, I saw both stories on CNN and I fully expect more to come as we move towards summer.

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