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Profile Information

Name: Hunter
Gender: Male
Current location: California
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 22,575

About Me

I'm a very dangerous fellow when I don't know what I'm doing.

Journal Archives

Angry teenage girls frequently use their words...

... and sometimes a parent or teacher thinks it would much easier on everyone if they just punched a hole in the wall or threw a wastebasket.

I know I have.

The difficult part isn't telling people what they "should" do; anyone can do that since everyone has opinions how to best get along in this world. The difficult part is simply listening, even as you are being eviscerated by angry words.

Privileged white males in the U.S.A. have a bad habit of telling everyone else what they "should" do. Cops in the U.S.A. are even worse.

If I was emperor of this nation I'd fire three-quarters of the cops and completely disarm three-quarters of those remaining. Let them solve problems with their words, and leave the weapons to those few saintly individuals who would sooner take a bullet than kill someone.

My dad always made me fix the damage I did as a teen...

... I learned some valuable skills along the way.

I later got jobs fixing up crappy student housing that had been abused by other angry and lost young people.

However this turns out in rough Baltimore, it's probably not going to end up creating jobs or educational opportunities in the local community. The repair and cleanup work will go to well-connected outsiders, just as the police jobs do, emphasizing once again to the people of the community that the more powerful "polite" society considers them both useless and dangerous.

Fuck polite.

"Please, sir, may I have another bowl of your shit?"

There's plenty of work to be done in the U.S.A.. If the private sector cannot provide good jobs for people, our governments must. And if government wants to know what kind of work and what kind of educational opportunities a community desperately needs, then the experts are the people who actually live in a community, not some self-righteous asshole living in an entirely different universe, fully insulated from many rougher realities of life.

I'm a Socialist and my economics are radical.

I understand our current economic system very well, thank you, and I abhor it.

What our economists today call "productivity" and "profit" is directly proportional to the damage we are doing to both earth's natural environment and the human spirit.

Large transfers of money should only occur with a focus on potential benefits for ALL PEOPLE and then only to projects that are sustainable and improve the overall environment for our own descendants, and the descendants of the other sentient life forms we share this planet with.

I've got no problem with private property or private investment, but I do think taxes ought to be steeply progressive on both income and wealth, such that it's impossible for an uber-wealthy class of people to arise; a class of people capable of buying and otherwise corrupting democratically elected government.

If there was such a thing as a "reasonable" fundamentalist Christian...

... and she didn't approve of Planet Fitness or it's policies, she would have left the place quietly and never returned.

And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet. -- Matthew 10:14

Instead she's out there on the street corner like a hooker for God, flashing her goods, and loudly trumpeting her "Christian" values to all who pass by.

My father-in-law was a medic. He told the Navy flat out he'd never shoot anyone.

He wouldn't hold a gun.

He missed out on active duty in Korea by strange fortune. Instead they used him in atomic bomb experiments. He's one of the few people I've met who has witnessed atomic bomb explosions up close and once walked into ground zero while things were still on fire. Afterwards, him and all the guys he was with discarded their clothing and scrubbed the fallout off themselves until the radiation detectors said they were "safe." It wasn't a safe level for many people. My father-in-law was lucky.

My dad's eyes weren't good, so the Army made him a clerk. He'd probably have been a M.A.S.H. "Radar" sort of character if they'd sent him to Korea. He's an artist and a lover and a gardener among his many talents, not a warrior.

My dad's dad was an Army Air Force officer in World War II. He was obsessed with airplanes, in what we now know as an "autistic spectrum" kind of way. He wanted to fly, really really very badly, but his physical coordination and sense of balance were not adequate. He was a bit of a klutz. Hell, I can say it now, many years after his passing, he was frightened by bicycles. How do those things stay up? He couldn't do the math in his head fast enough. But otherwise he was very gifted with mechanical things.

He was later one of the many engineers who worked on the Apollo Project. Somewhere in his military service he'd acquired a familiarity with titanium. My grandfather never ever talked about his military service, I think some of it may have been dirty and abhorrent, but I got my enthusiasm for science and engineering and space exploration from him. His contributions to the moon landing were his proudest achievement.

My mom's dad was a Conscientious Objector during World War II. My mom's family were religious dissidents and pacifists, which is why they left Europe in the 1800's and ran as fast as they could into America's Wild West, later to find themselves in the heart of Mormon country, where they could make a living raising cattle, procuring booze, and mediating unseemly disputes between Mormons, very, very discreetly. The U.S.A. military gave my mom's dad a choice: prison or building Liberty and Victory ships. He chose to build ships. During the war he once got beaten bloody by the cops for protesting the Japanese Internment. They were taking away his neighbors.

My mom has a friend who was coincidently protected by a Mormon family. They "bought" the family's California property and invited them to work for them in Utah. When the war was over they "sold" the property back to the Japanese family, honest dealings all around, all profit to the original Japanese owners, enough to get them back on their feet again. Unfortunately that was not the norm in such dealings. Many very valuable Pacific Coast properties were lost to Japanese-American families by false promises.

My parents raised me and all my siblings as pacifists. When the war in Vietnam ended we were all thoroughly Quaker, and I was not yet quite old enough to be drafted. Had I been, I'm pretty sure they'd have bought me safe passage to someplace beyond the U.S.A. draft boards' reach.

So long as I'm here, it's okay.

I've been on the internet a long time. I always wear protection.

But I'm so geekishly cool, I probably don't need it.

News is bad for you.

News is bad for your health. It leads to fear and aggression, and hinders your creativity and ability to think deeply. The solution? Stop consuming it altogether

Rolf Dobelli
Friday 12 April 2013 15.00 EDT


In the past few decades, the fortunate among us have recognised the hazards of living with an overabundance of food (obesity, diabetes) and have started to change our diets. But most of us do not yet understand that news is to the mind what sugar is to the body. News is easy to digest. The media feeds us small bites of trivial matter, tidbits that don't really concern our lives and don't require thinking. That's why we experience almost no saturation. Unlike reading books and long magazine articles (which require thinking), we can swallow limitless quantities of news flashes, which are bright-coloured candies for the mind. Today, we have reached the same point in relation to information that we faced 20 years ago in regard to food. We are beginning to recognise how toxic news can be.

I quit television altogether, and I only read the local paper. I've been much happier, and I don't feel disconnected at all.

Seeing the television and mass media generated storms blowing through DU gives me a greater awareness of how much news is pure propaganda, fog, and utter bullshit.

Hillary's emails? Please...

I think everyone should be considered shareholders in overall economy.

We all ought to be "trust fund" kids, even if it's just a small safe studio apartment, good food, free education, appropriate medical care, and a few generous mugs of beer or glasses of wine with dinner, or cannabis deserts.

Build mindless robots to do the crappiest most dangerous jobs, and make certain every human job pays beyond any "living wage" and is a satisfying job worth doing.

Internal refugee migration within the U.S.A. does not have a positive history.

I live in a place in a place in California where a few of the roads have family names.

My least favorite ancestors and their relatives were intolerant of "white trash" and Okies. Even my fairly tolerant grandfather freaked out when I decided to marry, in his words, "a Mexican girl." He did not attend our Big Catholic Wedding. Much to his credit he got over that, but I'm still a little suspicious he'd suffered some small stroke and forgotten whiteness made any difference to his Wild West pseudo-WASP family honor.

Like he should talk, he had Irish Catholic ancestors too, and my artist dad had married a Catholic heretic/dissident, corrupted from her dreams of being a celibate nun to becoming someone who liked to have much wild unprotected sex and many babies.

As a ten year old I knew how to change a diaper. Not me nor any one of my siblings had babies before we were certain we could support them. My "choose life" mom always offered to support our babies if by some accident we had them, but thoughts of having more siblings in the household, biological random genetic combinations or otherwise, just more diapers to change, greatly inhibited us. Just think of the diaper pail and embrace birth control. That stinky diaper pail is much scarier than any confession to God's man on earth, condoms, pills, or even slight friction at the pharmacy counter. I own these pills and condoms, I own my sexuality.

Very fortunately for me, my WASP ancestors got beaten down hard in the Great Depression. The worst of them are long dead. The more flexible among them, my most direct ancestors, learned a little humility.

They'd owned large chunks of San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego, but they lost it all playing highly leveraged money games.

I'm a very lucky human being. I might have been Mitt Romney insufferable as a wealthy autistic spectrum trust fund kid.

Instead I've experienced the glory of being an indigent U.S. American kid living in a French public park, and a few years later, as a semi-homeless dude living in my car.

Life is an adventure that kills us all eventually. What we can celebrate here on earth are the stories.

You can't eat gold.

But it's an excellent conductor of heat and electricity, makes pretty jewelry, and is also a superb lower toxicity heavy metal for making ammunition.

If it was up to me I'd outlaw all forms of ammunition but plastic, steel, copper, silver, and gold. (I've been boycotting lead ammunition since I was a kid. It's bad for vultures, condors, and many other birds. Vultures and condors are among my favorite animals; they are humorous and playful birds, even though their food preferences are a little unappetizing. Condors and vultures will eat things our most disgusting dogs wouldn't roll in.)

Police departments would only be allowed to use gold and plastic ammunition. Cops caught with any other sort of ammunition, even at the firing range, would face a mandatory five year prison sentences, preferably sharing a cell with someone from a community they've abused.

A pleasant consequence of these regulations would be that all the rotten police departments would never have any metal ammunition as it would be stolen by rotten cops, and the more honest police departments would be reluctant to spray off multiple rounds of expensive gold bullets in situations that really didn't demand it. Even here in the trigger-happy U.S.A., such demanding situations are incredibly rare, no more than zero, one, or two annually, against bad guys who are very clearly and indisputably bad.
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