I sing the infrastructure blues
cause I just can’t get there from here
moving around the world’s damage
while I carry my own
gotta route around the damage
because I gotta see her
she’s just past that road closure
dying in the hospital
and now I must think of all the times
I coulda fixed it
so she would be dying at home
and not on the other end of that
I’ve had another great week at work; we’re doing a bunch of training for a new computer system and after Epicor’s Avante it’ll seem like roasting marshmallows and drinking beer.
And I got paid.
Gotta like that!
I descuzzed the kitchen surfaces (except the sink, Jeff got to it before I did) and now am contemplating the agony of getting on the floor and cleaning out the fridge, which smells like Something Dead, since bending knees and back does not suit me. I have had to learn how to step down off the bus all over again; if I lead with my right foot I nearly collapse on the ground from the pain, so I have to remember it’s left foot first.
Jeff and I are very much enjoying Downton Abbey and recommend it.
Coming up – last episodes of Warehouse 13, the season ender for Justified, more Archer and hopefully more Rick & Morty. And Game of Thrones starts up again tomorrow night.
I need to transfer some music onto my phone to relieve the tedium of the bus ride, and also maybe some TED talks or books on tape. Apparently the Dunnett novels are all available but of course I haven’t found a free one.
I opened up the novel again and worked away at it for a bit last night. I’ve booked the Easter weekend to do nothing but write, but that’s two weekends away. Maybe I’ll even finish it; there’s a novella length single scene I have to write for close to the beginning of the book, and it’s going to be hopelessly and most soppily romantic, so I’ll have to really be in the mood.
Haven’t heard from Katie lately, but apparently she’s not throwing up constantly any more, so yay. She lost a lot of weight, poor lamb, and that is never good. It’s as well that we’re made of tough stuff.
I answered the door today to a couple of Xtian types wearing my screaming blue “I am on the side of the scientists’ t-shirt, which I acquired from a geekgrrl at Conflikt VI. Happy days! Declined their dead tree, have enough of my own thanks.
It has been more or less unremarked that the first climate change refugees left their Pacific Island this week. Very sad.
The global banana crop is about to fail due to a pathogen which has now been found on every continent. Also, sad.
Jeff and I are off to Thrifty’s once he wakes up.
I have been thinking about what I like in an actor.
A good actor works consistently and takes time off only when she must. She tries different roles and treats everything about herself as a component of performance. She can differentiate between the toxic pixie dusts of celebrity and notoriety, interviews graciously, is courteous to fans and professional with coworkers. She is judicious in her use of alcohol and drugs. She leaves her personal life out of her work unless it helps to bring snap to the performance, recognizes and honours excellence in others, never stops learning and protects those aspects of herself which make for great performances against all comers. She can take direction and make suggestions. She understands as much about the business of acting as she needs to. She takes every job seriously, even the fun ones. And the only time you hear about her when you aren’t actually watching her is when she’s promoting a role; she saves the interesting stuff for the screen and stays out of the fricking tabloids. A good actor is a working actor. A good actor balances knowing what she does best with working in a challenging role, knowing she might fail spectacularly. A good actor is too busy working to worry about the last blazing success or ignominious turkey.
Soup lunch today. I may bake something if I feel energetic enough.
I have decided that I am an Assam person, not a Darjeeling person. I may blend the two teas together; that’s pretty much how they make English breakfast tea anyway. Proper loose leaf tea is really a thing of beauty.
Were you aware that the global price of coffee is going to triple over the next five years? If you can bring yourself to stop drinking it except as a treat you’ll be doing the planet and your wallet a favour.
The California drought is going to end. Whether it will be enough to save the almond plantations is an open question.
my response to two of them
You fellas are adorable.
When the first peoples came to Turtle Island, there was nobody to conquer. (Although the megafauna, were they still around and sentient, might object most strenuously to that categorization). They spread out, established territories, and sure, fought among themselves as people do when displaced by climate change and natural disaster, but they established collective lands and for the most part respected those lands with natural boundaries and traded like mad. (Although modern Haidas laugh and say that their name comes from the other tribes yelling Hide Us! when they saw those fricking war canoes….) The notion of federation was borrowed and improved upon (arguably, but not by me) and codified by the descendants of the people who kicked the Haudenosaunee off their lands by right of conquest. Except that they made treaties and broke them for convenience, for racism, in the name of the conqueror god, & for capitalism.
In the end the land will reclaim the settlers. Without collective care of the land we’re all going to die horribly as capitalism dirties and endangers every creature now alive. Private property rights are a wonderful idea, but they are unenforceable and serve crony capitalism by atomizing opposition. Those rights will be less and less enforceable as time goes by unless you bare your ass to whoever controls the legal (or otherwise) monopoly on the use of force.
When your government can rain death down on you unopposed from 20000 feet up if you annoy the people at the joysticks, I hope your spirited defense of property rights shields you and your children.
I belong to a collective of like minded people who are working our way back to food safety and security, as well as shared land. When I’m done I’ll be working less than 30 hours a week to feed myself and our animals, have the comfort and security of family and friends around me, I’ll have access to light and power and musical instruments, and private property rights will be ideological road kill on a highway long since grown over by bushes and weeds. Using scare tactics about shared land, rather than educating yourself about where it exists and where it is working (because you’re right about it not working, often, but do not really understand why, and shoot yourself in the foot by not seeing where it IS working), is in my view inertia masking fear. Private property is for people who already have something and are FRIGHTENED of losing it.
But like fiat currency, marriage traditions, organized religion and tailgate parties, private property is a social convention, not an absolute right, pace Bastiat and all of his heirs. My only absolute right is my person and the tools of my trade or trades, and they are not rights I may individually enforce. Everything else re property is a stake through the heart of my connectedness to other people, which can, and should trump my right to sit on any dunghill, be it shit or gold, and crow that I am wiser and better, for I have something to lose, and need never think of who died or was injured for me to acquire it. The concentration camp you threaten liberals with is in your own minds. Free yourselves, humans, with whom I share the immense and shameful legacy of conquest and genocide! You are looters and do not seem aware of it, do not seem equipped to even consider it as possible, and may not be able to admit that the violence of your scorn betrays the weakness of your position.
And of course I don’t expect to be on the side of any government, local or otherwise, at any point in the future, but I’ll leave the fighting and dying for land to others, and try merely to keep planting food and saving seed and tending those weaker than I. When I have finished shedding this crust of goods and have nothing but my instruments and seed bags, I will stop being a looter myself, at long last. A thing is what it is, and not something else, as a wise man once said.
My investment counselor sent me something today “Here’s two economic indicators showing it’s time to buy!” Bogus indicators. Here’s what I wrote back.
I’m not convinced. The markets in China and Brazil have fallen off, there are signs of an ugly power struggle coming to light in China, the euro-zone crisis is nowhere close to being resolved, and we’re close to historic highs for food prices in a large number of flashpoint countries including large chunks of the Arab world, already experiencing a lot of turbulence. Traditionally when the food price index bumps above 215 you may have food riots, and above 240 you’re pretty much guaranteed of food riots. All of this will bring a steady feed of turmoil to the markets so that every bump up on good economic news out of the States will be levelled off by bad news somewhere else as the markets are looking for excuses to be timid, not brave.
Our government is getting into a pissing match with Iran as a proxy to the US, and that is going to direct state sponsored terrorism to Canada within the next couple of years.
Unless Global Security has some investments for me in retirement homes, food coops and hacker spaces, I’m going to sit it out. I may also buy land, but I haven’t figured out where.
To be GOVERNED is to be watched, inspected, spied upon, directed, law-driven, numbered, regulated, enrolled, indoctrinated, preached at, controlled, checked, estimated, valued, censured, commanded, by creatures who have neither the right nor the wisdom nor the virtue to do so. To be GOVERNED is to be at every operation, at every transaction noted, registered, counted, taxed, stamped, measured, numbered, assessed, licensed, authorized, admonished, prevented, forbidden, reformed, corrected, punished. It is, under pretext of public utility, and in the name of the general interest, to be place[d] under contribution, drilled, fleeced, exploited, monopolized, extorted from, squeezed, hoaxed, robbed; then, at the slightest resistance, the first word of complaint, to be repressed, fined, vilified, harassed, hunted down, abused, clubbed, disarmed, bound, choked, imprisoned, judged, condemned, shot, deported, sacrificed, sold, betrayed; and to crown all, mocked, ridiculed, derided, outraged, dishonored. That is government; that is its justice; that is its morality.
The world’s present industrial civilization is handicapped by the coexistence of two universal, overlapping, and incompatible intellectual systems: the accumulated knowledge of the last four centuries of the properties and interrelationships of matter and energy; and the associated monetary culture which has evolved from folkways of prehistoric origin.
The first of these two systems has been responsible for the spectacular rise, principally during the last two centuries, of the present industrial system and is essential for its continuance. The second, an inheritance from the prescientific past, operates by rules of its own having little in common with those of the matter-energy system. Nevertheless, the monetary system, by means of a loose coupling, exercises a general control over the matter-energy system upon which it is superimposed.
Despite their inherent incompatibilities, these two systems during the last two centuries have had one fundamental characteristic in common, namely exponential growth, which has made a reasonably stable coexistence possible. But, for various reasons, it is impossible for the matter-energy system to sustain exponential growth for more than a few tens of doublings, and this phase is by now almost over. The monetary system has no such constraints, and according to one of its most fundamental rules, it must continue to grow by compound interest.
I watched the helicopter video of the assault on the Oakland OWS folks Gas. Un fracking believable. And oh look. http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/citydesk/2011/10/26/oakland-police-love-kittens-teargas/
So instead of showing the veteran who was injured by the assault by the police on peaceful protesters, they show an Oakland cop petting a kitten. If you see the video, you will be amazed and appalled.
Not impressed, Mister Mass Media. Not one whit.
Care package for the demo. 2 blankies, including a hand made quilt donated mOm; batteries, a drum and a penny whistle and an egg shaker; two pairs of socks, a complete rain outfit men’s medium, a yoga mat, reusable tie wraps, a metal portable desk with paper, a granola bar, a nice name tag, and some other little things.
Brilliant day of sunshine! Jeff’s coming too.
Alan Grayson: Now let me tell you what they’re talking about. They’re complaining about the fact that Wall Street wrecked the economy three years ago and nobody’s held responsible for that. Not a single person has been indicted or convicted for destroying twenty percent of our national net worth accumulated over the course of two centuries. They’re upset about the fact that Wall Street have iron control over the economic policies of this country, and that one party is a wholly owned subsidiary of Wall Street and the other party caters to them as well. That’s the real truth of the matter, as you said before. And…
PJ O’Rourke: Get the man a bongo drum, they’ve found their spokesman!
Alan Grayson: If I…
PJ O’Rourke: Get your shoes off, get a bongo drum, forget where to go to the bathroom, and it’s yours.
Alan Grayson: If I am the spokesman for all the people who think we should not have 24 million people in this country who can’t find a full time job, that we should not have 50 million people who can’t see a doctor when they’re sick, that we shouldn’t have 47 million people of this country who need government help in order to feed themselves, and we shouldn’t have 15 million families who owe more on their mortgage than the value of their home, okay, I’ll be that spokesman.
I always thought that PJ O’Rourke was a very amiable fascist.
The thing about higher chordates is how we can look similar.
Jesus! Potentially toxic extremophile fungus in the dishwasher?
I keep finding reasons to want to go to Chicago.
I didn’t much like the article, but I enjoyed the illustration of proto writing.
Jesus! That’s a big statue.