Welcome to DU! The truly grassroots left-of-center political community where regular people, not algorithms, drive the discussions and set the standards. Join the community: Create a free account Support DU (and get rid of ads!): Become a Star Member Latest Breaking News General Discussion The DU Lounge All Forums Issue Forums Culture Forums Alliance Forums Region Forums Support Forums Help & Search


patrice's Journal
patrice's Journal
May 10, 2013

Agreed. period. AND I have been wondering if anyone would like to consider that Third -whatever in

an alternative light.

I understand that "the Third Way" is associated with the DLC and their main PR go tos, the Clintons, but the precept of a Third -whatever is something that I think we would benefit from giving more careful consideration, especially as regards differences amongst ourselves even as we try to be "one" in opposition to oppressors of all kinds.

The raison d'etre of a "third" anything is SYNTHESIS. One OR MORE , syntheses, between two elements, can happen in practically in-numerable ways, especially in highly complex situations, and the character of any given synthesis depends upon whom, precisely, is doing the synthesizing. This is why we associate too much corporate compliance and war support with the Third Way engendered by the DLC. Those involved in that deal-making, and how, therefore, the deals precisely were made, are the PRODUCT of the milieu in which they manifested themselves, so the Clintons/DLC are who they are and, to me, the real questions are about how the Left becomes enough of a force to affect synthesis(es) in a specifically Leftish way, how to discover what that Left-synthesis(es) could be and how, process-wise, to take a stand on that, especially since corporations, and hence corporate personhood, AFFECT LABOR, which could result in some deals that could reiterate the oppressors on better terms for some but not others.

Please understand that I'm NOT talking against Labor, just trying to point out their very special position in ALL of this and trying to be honest about various prejudices that are common, regardless of party labels; one of which prejudices is against socialism. I have it on relatively good academic authority (from a friend whose master's research on propaganda lead her to this conclusions) that co-incidental to this phase of the decline of Labor triggered by Nixon, courting and then double-crossing the big powerful rich unions, was an internal purge, inspired by Joe McCarthy, of anyone who had even a whiff of the Red Scare about them, which resulted in their abandonment of less powerful unions which unions included folks like the UMW, who were in turmoil at that time, and also Farm Workers who included amongst their ranks not only non-white ETHNIC groups and women claiming economic justice for less well-paid workers.

My point in bringing this up is that from the first of this latest schism here at DU, I have been worried about losing Labor's opportunity for the right to organize, the EFCA 2.0. I guess I'd have to say that I'd give up a LOT to see a Constitutional affirmation of the rights of ALL workers to organize, not just those with enough economic clout to do it and get away with it. To get there, to get to something like EFCA 2.0 and, thus, to call on unions about their own prejudices (of all kinds) we MUST synthesize something that is more functional for the Left than just "Let it all crash and burn and then we'll start over and presto-change-o authentic revolution will produce all of the solutions we need" (in god knows how many decades).

I'm saying that I think it is necessary to recognize the authentic NEED for a "third" something, a synthesis or syntheses, and then to take strategic measures to be an essential part of that definition in a way that actually works well enough that next-steps toward social and economic justice can manifest out of that relatively new set of relationships. Part of the problem in talking about this stuff is that tooooo often everyone wants to tell you that you are "unprincipled" when, in fact, in the throes of such a process the most real principles become stronger and draw people together. It's a MORE principled way of engaging the struggle than just balkanizing until the last man is left standing in the carnage talking about "starting over".

May 10, 2013

Perhaps too often our attention, when we say "Democratic Party", is focused TOO high up.

You have heard of the "inverted pyramid"?

To me, the revolution consists of one at a time relationships in which the people bring the message of freedom and integrity to one another. THAT kind of behavior is the real revolution.

So much, practically exclusive, focus on the tip of the power-structure is truly and profoundly just another iteration of the same mechanism that enslaved us in the first place.

I'm not saying to ignore the high up power positions, just that nothing is going to change until the people change themselves and live an active ongoing non-violent STRONG revolution together, all day, every day, amongst ourselves, let's not wait!, and fuck the "big hats", someday they will wake up and find themselves re-defined by us.

April 18, 2013

Bookmarking & Thanks!

April 15, 2013

Regarding other people's "principles", including those of BO:

Just because I/you don't perceive something (e.g. a "principle", whatever that is*), that does not mean that it isn't there.

That means either it isn't there or I/you lack the perceptual faculties to identify it (which include, amongst other things, data), or I/you are making a mistake, or lying, about it, or some combination of the these; in any case it's a null set, indeterminate.

Honesty compels me to admit this is the truth about me/you and, because it is true, I, personally, am also compelled to hypothesize about those who do claim the ability to read my mind, and/or those of others, including BO's, so well as to characterize what is there in judgemental terms, that is, so well as to go as far as telling others what is or isn't in someone's mind in absolutist and, most often, negative terms. Beware of those who tell you what other people think, I don't like that experience, no matter whom is the object of that kind of gossip; that's a reaction I acquired as a born and bred Tweener and from teaching. Such persons either:

1. have data-->information that they are not sharing for agendas that they are also not sharing;
2. don't know and/or don't know and/or care that they don't know;
3. are biased in what they do claim to "know";
4. are something that would meet some people's definition of "God".

Not that I expect it to really matter to anyone but me, but all I need to deal with 1-4 above is the honest recognition that these are the probabilities that inher in y/our situation.

TO ME, refusal to recognize those probabilities sets off ALL of the alarms for ALL that those who call themselves "the Left" claim to be struggling against and abusive language, directed at ANYONE, only makes those alarms, and one or the other of their associated probabilities sketched in 1-4 above, STRONGER, especially in the face of doctrinaire authority of ANY kind that tries to tell me things are simpler than I know, in factual experience, that they are.

Perhaps you recognize this reaction to what amounts to de facto coercion? or, at least at minimum, what could be hypocrisy?

Just as I do not answer questions when I feel bias will not result in an honest hearing of what I am trying to say, I do not expect you to answer my questions either, so, by all means, ignore this post if you FREELY choose to do so. If I/you are not free, that is my motive in writing this. Freedom is too precious to make blind assumptions about it, especially around ANY kind of "authority", so . . .

I do think it is a valuable thing to at least get the questions out there, for anyone who is trying to discover some truth of their own, not just whatever we are handed by others, because this particular dynamic and all that is associated with it, such as, *self-fulfilling prophecy and correspondence bias (a.k.a. fundamental attribution error), to name just a couple of relatively valid and reliable dimensions of social psychology, IS part of what oppresses us ALL **, so if I/you don't recognize my/our own slavery, we're only going to repeat the SAME OLD MISTAKES until it's too late, if it isn't already.

** for philosophical (i.e. principles that are the result of the love of wisdom) background on this statement, please refer to Paolo Freire, especially his book Pedagogy of the Oppressed, wherein he cautions ALL of us about how the way we live has caused each of us to internalize the oppressor. Anyone who refuses to recognize that probability is either mistaken, or something else is going on. This is why authentic revolution, begins and ends for everyone with what Freire calls the "praxis" of honest self-critique. I am willing to go there. Are you? That's YOUR choice, but, whatever YOU (not someone else) decide, do not expect me to not do what I honestly think I need to do to free myself and, hence, possibly, others.


FOUR fingers!!!!

April 12, 2013

Ron Paul, "Death is a tribute to our liberty." Chomsky laughs at & then DESTROYS Libertarians.

In this video clip, Noam Chomsky describes Libertarian "savagery" and their "... extreme advocate of total tyranny, power given into the hands of private UNACCOUNTABLE tyrannies, even worse than state tyrannies, because even (in state tyrannies) the public still has somekind of role."

March 18, 2013

None of which justifies the dysfunctions that we are seeing. Some FEW idiots propose to take the gun

s away and your cohort's response is madly hysterical abandon, extreme over-reaction to extreme over-reaction, and because you have already decided, without anything much more than ANONYMOUS and likely dishonest say-so, apparently, that the take the guns away minority will succeed to some extent (and, btw, we are to assume whatever degree thereof, whether quite tiny or more widely affecting gun owners, it's ALL the same huge travesty of everyone's rights), that justifies whole hog maxed out weapons ownership and threats of violence, ostensibly toward the government, but quite possibly, under the dire circumstances that all of you predict, more likely also coercing local citizenry to mind their political ps and qs or lose their jobs, or not get that contract, or see "friendships" end, or not get hired, or . . . . any of the myriad other forms of fascistic political extortion that ARE possible by means of threats.

Do you know what self-fulfilling prophecy is? Your expectations shape reality. It amounts to this, re gun-ownership, if you depend solely upon your gun to make you safe, when a threat actually materializes, when someone else(s) with a gun(s) eventually shows up, it's too late. You're not safe. You have already shaped reality by how you define it in such severely limited and violent terms and your safety was long gone before your own situation actually got around to revealing that fact to you.

Personally, I'm willing to live with your over-simplification of everything into guns, IF you don't coerce others about it, but not only is that highly unlikely, but also in light of all of the ignored (on the average) responsibilities of citizens to the commonweal, that is, responsibilities to so many OTHER very different aspects of what makes people authentically safe that are left completely to beg in favor of threats and violence, I do wonder why you so desperately want something that fails so completely to keep you safe.

I'm a tolerant person, but my tolerance is coerced by your weapons. There isn't much I can do about that so I'll live with it. But I think you fiddle with your guns while "Rome" burns and then use the "burning" as further justification to ignore and actively cop-out on, OTHER responsibilities and to fiddle even more and more and more. It's a circular, completely self-referential, culture.

And if/when it all comes crashing down, we'll hear "I told you so"s from those who couldn't do anything but pass the buck to others and are, thus, part of the cause of the destruction, a mistaken part that was never under any threat to begin with, a cohort that justifies vast injustices on the basis of a propagandized mistakes about threat to your gun ownership, but a very different kind of part nonetheless, because unlike other problematic causes, such as those that I myself and others contribute, more or less un-wittingly, any of the other non-gun problems that you are responsible for, and which add up to threats to your own safety, are perpetrated by your answer to everything, the point of a gun.

BTW, I'd be glad to hear how your social and economic justice activism is comensurate with or exceeds your gun activism, so I await you to enlighten me.

March 14, 2013

Wondering what effect 12% may be having upon some atitude$$$$$$$ toward Catholics:


From Catholics for Choice:

According to the Catholic Health Association (CHA), the trade association representing Catholic health care institutions throughout the US, there are 611 Catholic hospitals, representing approximately 12% of all hospitals nationwide.

It's a relatively good bet that you can follow the dollar to explain so very much, especially in the almost completely fungible culture of the internet, where negativity has such a low, widely accessible threshold, compared to positivity, and one could at least hypothetically consider whether, in a national "health" "care" environment, the value of certain classes of negativity could increase.

Not, of course, that critique isn't valid, but more that variations and exceptions, which are, of course, ALSO allowable, are interesting, especially when those variations and exceptions are claimed as the exclusive property of those doing the judging and who also happen to be encouraging others to engage in same (as long as they conform to the "right" attitude toward those who are judged).

One of the most reliable research outcomes in psychology shows how people rarely know accurately what they will do in adverse circumstances. You probably have heard of Stanley Milgram, but there are several others showing the same class of phenomena that can be compared to events such as Argentina's Dirty War. These behavioral phenomena include a strong tendency toward error in ascribing causes to other people's failures compared to ones own: "they did bad because they are a bad person" vs. "I did bad because the situation made it unavoidable, and, btw, my bad isn't really bad."

The judgers ALWAYS get the benefit of the doubt, their own shortcoming assumed to be "insignificant", while the mistakes of others damning. WHATEVER other label judgers wear (and that could be *A*N*Y* of the many many many labels there are), they're always better than ___________________________ (the poor, homosexuals, convicts, women, Black Americans, Catholics, whatever suits the politically correct mode of the moment . . . ). That's the beauty of this particular hate; it works for any set of labels anyone wants to use.

Not only do people usually not know what they'd actually do under big dire circumstances, the criteria that others are held to, ever so conveniently do not apply in the same way to, say, small things that the judges could easily change in their own behaviors and attitudes, small easily changed behaviors that would add up are always a "lesser" crime than blanket condemnations of vast groups of others whom the judgers have never met.

None of us should be shocked by the growth of private prisons. I'm thinking we will never change that.

Maybe you can understand why it scares me that what we are seeing so very very often comes, not only from those whom we justifiably resist, but ALSO from those who claim the social and economic justice high ground of this country.

It's no secret around here that I am disappointed in what calls itself "the Left". I was not like this before 2008. I keep trying to get over it, but what I see returns and returns, so I keep having to put my hope away, after-all, it is my own fault. It IS my error in assuming it's more widely identified, than it actually is, that one's critique of others is justified ONLY to the full extent that it is honestly and equally applied to one's self. If "they" fail at "big" difficult things, then certainly one's own "small" easy failures are significant too and if that's NOT what we are doing here, then I have no idea what the all of the bother is about, because learning is not a priority and without learning, there is no authentic revolution. Just more of the $$$$$$$$ame, wearing whatever the hot label$$$$$ are.

Pardon me, while I despair for justice.

To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.
March 13, 2013

Just thinking about the wake of Disaster Capitalism across the globe, being seeded with assault

weapons that fall into the hands of people who know next to nothing about what is happening to them, with others who aren't so ignorant in their midst.

I know I am supposed to hate drones and I do hate what drones do; these kinds of UNREGULATED PRIVATE gun markets put drones in a different light for me and, to be honest, I have to say to what calls itself "the Left" that if it's possible to tolerate relatively late abortions, then it's also possible to tolerate valid efforts to stabilize (*IF* stability is possible) places where people are suffering and dying because of chaos or outright anarchy ruled by gun-lords. Oh god, I can hear the screams from "the Left" now: "neo-con koolaid" "blue pill" - or - "red pill" (I get them mixed up), "machine wars" "matrix muppet" etc. etc. etc., but authentic intellectual freedom, and courage in the face of authentic reality, are part of being an authentic Liberal.

I yield any validity there is to those matrix concerns; they are authentically my concerns too! But "the Left" often fails to mention a quintessentially determinative factor, a passive and disengaged populace, so . . . . Additionally, I am also thinking about how the War on Iraq came to be out of avoident ignorance. Certainly, there is an enabling factor that made all of Iraq Group's lies work, an enabling factor that nurtured the hate and fear of Islam, that motivated all of the blind ignorance and that enabling factor is the passive dis-engagement, authoritarian bound, irresponsible slave-mentality, infantile, fatalistic, cop-out to the plausibly deniable - people of the USA.

Drones or no drones, not much stands a chance of succeeding in ending War Capitalism without a change in some/most/all of the demographic traits I listed here and others besides. And discussions of NDAA that leave this enabling fact out are more about politics than they are into changing what brought the NDAA into being in the first place and will continue to do so in one form or another, until many many more Americans finally start proactively accepting their adult responsibilities for informed and actively developing citizenship.

. . . . so much else that we concern ourselves with are symptoms, not root causes, and one way to free people to actually look at root-causes, instead of mutually assured issue/symptom destruction, would be to focus on universally stable basics: Public Education; Public Media (including the ethersphere); Public Health Care; Public "retirement"/Social Security; Public Transportation; Public, Private, Public-Private Housing; Public Campaign Finance.

March 9, 2013

I'd swap "smoke" breaks, only, for flex time that I manage for longer & shorter days of my choice

in a couple or more weeks @ month . . . . ,

because I'm busy doing other stuff, in my community, in the city in which I had my first apartment of my own.


Kansas City Arts' Renaissance!

- Blackhouse Jazz Collective (big basey complex sound) at the Paragraph Gallery, NW of Power & Light, KC, MO.

- near the Library District downtown and part of the city's gallery community around KC's new Performing Arts Center,
and downtown,


March 2013 Composers Showcase

- many instruments, base trombones and many saxaphones, and other instruments, and a great drummer, and keyboards and clarinets and trombones and brass of all kinds.

- in collaboration with The Nelson Atkins collection of ancient things as the composers' themes.

- proud of my town and its many communities!

- and its support of artists'.

- I heart my city.

March 7, 2013

Regarding a foundation for talking about pro- and anti- drone positions:

(And because the thread I was replying in got locked)

**IF** dead innocent people is the fundamental problem, BOTH sides of the question should identify how many dead innocent people is too high a price to pay for being wrong in one's position on the issue.

I know the criteria of "innocent" is a variable (should it be a criteria at all? and, if so, who defines it and how?), which I'm treating like a constant here, but I'm just using that assumption as a starting point, along with another assumption, that being, that the fundamental problem IS innocent dead people, whether those innocent dead people are killed by authentic situational threats or by drones, so that is, the problem is not limited to only innocent dead people who are killed by drones, nor to innocent people who are killed by situational threats.

So, there are assumptions about 2 sets of variables in my thinking:
- Any innocent dead people;
- Killed either by authentic contextual threats or by drones
, because if innocent dead people are the fundamental problem, we can't say it's okay for them to be killed by one means and not the other. It doesn't work to say it's okay for innocent people to be killed by situational threats, but not by drones, NOR, does it work to assume that it's not okay for innocent people to be killed by situational threats, but it is okay for them to be killed by drones. Neither position, pro- nor anti- drones, can claim Plausible Deniability when it comes to innocent dead people, when it suits their own position and then blame the other position for dead innocent people when that suits their own position.

With those sets of assumptions identified:

Those who say there is enough of a threat to others that drones are a tactical option in dealing with those threats, should say, under two hypothetical conditions, 1. if they are correct in their assessment of those threats & 2. if they are incorrect in their assessment of those threats: HOW MANY INNOCENT DEAD PEOPLE ARE TOO MANY to justify the drone option position under each of those sets of conditions, threats positive, and threats negative. We might assume that to the drone option group, under condition 1., the acceptable number of innocent dead people, killed by drones, should be LESS than how many innocents would die from the positively identified threat, NOT higher. More below about the drone option group and condition 2.

Those who say there is no threat to others, so drones should not be a tactical option, don't need to say how many dead innocent people are acceptable if they are correct in their assessment of threats = negative, because that number of acceptable dead people is already 0. However, those who say there is no threat, so drones should not be a tactical option, do need to address hypothetical condition 2. and tell us HOW MANY INNOCENT DEAD PEOPLE ARE TOO MANY to justify the anti-drone position if they are incorrect in their threats=negative assessment. This would be: if they are incorrect in their assessments of threats, how many innocent people would it be acceptable to die as a result of the threats that the anti-drone option group misidentifies, compared to how many innocent people would die were drones an option in dealing with those same threats.

My point here is that **IF** dead innocent people are the fundamental criteria for both the pro-drone and the anti-drone positions (and there aren't other un-declared agendas under the table, things like political base building, propaganda, and the struggles of U.S. and/or Other economic partisans), then BOTH sides need to address that criteria and compare their counts of potential innocent dead people, with the objective being, given the correct assessment of threats (either threats-positive or threats-negative and prohibiting threats-null/indeterminate), 0 or the fewest dead innocent people possible.

Part of the problem in doing that is that each side should do their analysis independently, so they can't just under bid one another in the POLITICAL context of a given situation, and they need also to at least share their methodologies relative to their conclusions. This last requirement may be the deal breaker, because if dead innocent people are not the authentic FUNDAMENTAL criteria for both the pro-drone and he anti-drone positions, if there are, instead, other criteria for pro- and anti- drone agendas that are not on the table, no matter which position is being covert, or obviously if it's both positions, they cannot be forthcoming about the respective methodologies for their assessments of threats relative to numbers of dead innocent people.

Which possibility brings me to the definition of threats, another assumption that we aren't talking about as we struggle over the politics of this issue. I am not aware that the anti-drone position admits that there is any risk of innocent people dying because there was no one to protect them, let alone defining what the threats are and from whom. Given the strength of American arms sales, both government and private, differences between the pro- and the anti- drone positions' respective definitions of what constitutes a threat, especially in private "Fast and Furious" assault weapons markets, is something we should be talking about relative to assessments of threats to innocent people. I cannot accept that there is no risk and, yet, as far as I know, that's what we are supposed to believe from the anti-drone position, or if there is a risk, anyone who dies from that risk those deaths are acceptable as long as there are no drones. Why is that?

S. 2205 - The Second Amendment Sovereignty Act of 2012 - http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022193033 was introduced in the 112th Congress and is currently sponsored by Jerry Moran of Kansas. This bill has been aggressively supported by Rand Paul. It is a Grover Norquist style oath/NRA threat for Senators to prevent U.S. participation in U.N. arms control treaties with other countries around the world. These would be the kinds of treaties that control the flow of private assault weapons sales into some of the world most troubled places. Personally, I need the anti-drone position to demonstrate that innocent people dying because of assault weapons is just as un-acceptable to them as innocent people dying because of drones.

Profile Information

Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 47,992
Latest Discussions»patrice's Journal