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Profile Information

Gender: Female
Home country: USA
Member since: Sat Oct 17, 2015, 10:59 AM
Number of posts: 2,450

About Me

Progressive in the Midwest, a transplant from both coasts, homesick for the eastern one. Traipsing the line between calling it like I see it and knowing when to keep my thoughts to myself. *note: I slip a lot.

Journal Archives

Help me find a lost thread

Last night I was too tired to respond to an interesting thread and now I cannot find it anywhere.

The OP asked what DUers do when they are not on DU.

Can anyone point me to it?


Stores Open and Closed on T'giving

Consider supporting companies that value their employees' family time during the holidays.

Open - Walmart (figures ) and Best Buy - see link for more

Closed Costco and Lowes - see link for more

Bonus - REI will be closed on Black Friday to let employees spend time outdoors.


MoveOn.org Pres Forum tmw - Bernie and O'Malley

Hey there,

I just RSVP'd to watch MoveOn.org's 2016 Presidential Forum on Tuesday.

Are you interested in signing up too? We could watch together.

Here's the link to RSVP:


Got some bad news today

God, I hate this.

First though, I'm relatively new as a DU member DU and been mostly lurking for a while now. My pets are my world so it seemed natural to join this group.

Our 19 year old cats (litter mates) are sick. One has a thyroid problem that is mostly under control for now, with meds. The other one, who has always been the hardier of the two, very healthy and strong, gave us a scare last week with dehydration and a (very) distended abdomen. There was too much fluid to see much on an X-ray so she went in for an ultrasound this morning. She has cancer.

At the moment we are numb but we know that at their age, we are very lucky.

I really hate this place we are in. We've been through pet loss before but these two have been with us for so long - it's unreal to me.

Must read diary from Daily Kos


angel d shares her perspective. Here's a snippet:

What I am about to write is going to resonate with some of us and others of us will scoff and resist at some of the concepts contained within. Life has given me a lot to think about – and be thankful about – and admittedly, I am on a bit of a cosmic tear. But I hope that this essay is read with the same spirit within which it was written, and what that “spirit” is, I will leave for you to decide, but just know that this essay is decidedly very “spiritual.”

Bernie Sanders is waking people up to their own political power. He is not empowering us, but rather he is helping us to remember that as individuals, and as expressions of a higher, collective consciousness, we have the power to make change, and to make a difference. He is using the political platform for his message, but his message crosses all of our collective belief constructs and speaks to the very nature of our humanity.

He is waking us up to the fact that, politically and by extension, across all aspects of our lives, we do not have to accept lesser evillism any longer, that just because something is the status quo, does not mean it has to remain so. The status quo is what it is – until it’s not. And the only way to change it is to simply change it.

He is reminding all of us that we have the power to change our society, that we have the power to change the way elections are run, and he is waking us up to the fact that we have the power to reclaim the democratic process and take it out of the hands of money and put it back where it belongs: political power and democracy belongs to We The People. It does not belong to money.

Only We The People have the power to change things, but because of our entrenched belief systems, we believe we can not. Instead of realizing that each moment is a separate moment containing infinite potential, we believe that each moment is simply a linear extension of the one that came before it, and therefore, at worst, nothing will ever change, nothing can ever change even if it could, we are told that any change must be gradual. It must be incremental, we must be willing to compromise what we know to be true and right if we really want to change. But I call BS on that notion. If nothing changes, it is because we believe that it can’t change, not because change, itself, is not possible.

Getting To The Core of it All

AntoniaMax at DK gets right to the heart of it all. Beautiful analysis:

Watching the news these days makes me physically ill, and I’m sure I am not the only one.

We on the Left look at people like Donald Trump and feel that his “let’s make them wear labels” approach to the Syrian refugee crisis is so obviously appalling, that all we have to do is point at it and people will see him for the fascist that he is. The problem is, that while conservatives have spent the last 50 years dominating the public debate, we have failed to make the case for basic human equality.

In part, this is because we believe in basic human equality so deeply in the core of our beings, that we can’t fathom why we would have to defend it to any sentient human being. It should be obvious. But it is not.

In fact, conservatives have been making such a strong case for inequality, for so long, that it has seeped into our thinking as a country in ways we don’t even realize. The reason the Right can slip seamlessly into outright fascism is that our entire public debate is already perilously close to that edge.

Some time ago the American Left stopped talking about “equality” and started talking about “opportunity”. This, in retrospect, was a really bad idea. Opportunity is part of the frame of “meritocracy”, which is nice in comparison to say, “oligarchy”. Meritocracy is focused on what makes us different, and how we can provide some manner of fairness in a world where people are not all the same.

In doing so, we fell into a conservative trap. They deliberately confuse being equal with being identical. We, when challenged with the fact that people differ, just bailed out on equality like the big fat chickens we are in the face of the slightest hint of criticism.

According to George Lakoff’s models of conservative and progressive worldviews, conservatives genuinely believe that people are not equal. Conservatives believe in a hierarchy where God outranks Man, Men outrank Women, Humans outrank Nature, White People outrank People of Color, Christians outrank Non-Christians, Bosses outrank Workers, Police outrank Civilians, American outrank Foreigners and so on.

Focusing on “opportunity” narrows the agenda of the public debate and leaves out of the frame, the entire discussion of what people in a society owe each other by mere virtue of being human.

Here’s just one example:

In the “opportunity frame”, the public debate is about how Unions are an obstacle to “fair” or merit based job advancement.

In the “equality frame”, the public debate is about what every person who works deserves in terms of fair compensation, safety, rights, and so on.

By narrowing our focus to “opportunity” we have allowed to focus to fall on how we differ, not what we have in common.

As the “Left” we are supposed to believe that what makes us the same, far outweighs what makes us different.

Ironically, our constitution is all about what makes us the same.

The right to equal treatment before the law is central to our society, yet we as a society have failed to deliver this for all people of color, and particularly our African American brothers and sisters.

We are guilty of letting this bedrock of fundamental human rights slide, perhaps because we don’t want to believe it is really as bad as it is, or because we don’t know what can be done to fix it, or because we think it is an individual and not an institutional problem, or because we assume that police actually have the right to intimidate people as part of their jobs. For whatever reason, we f*ed up.


While we all know violence by officers of the law is wrong, what we are missing is that the violation of human rights starts way before that.

Again, according to Lakoff’s models, conservatives believe that morality is adhering to your place in the hierarchy. Therefore civilians should behave as subordinates to police. The failure of people to “subordinate” themselves, is seen as immoral, and justifies use of any means necessary to put people “back in their place”.

If we fight for equality, we can make the case that the entire strategy of intimidation practiced by law enforcement should be stopped. That police should be trained to deal with every human they encounter, whether a person at a traffic stop or a suspected criminal, as an equal. Or better yet, treat everyone they encounter as they would want their mother treated in that same situation.

The question shouldn’t be, “did this person deserve to be beaten/shot/humiliated?” as the discussion often is about cases of violence by police against civilians, but “does anybody ever deserve to be beaten/shot/humiliated?” The answer is no.

The debate should be about service, empathy, mutual respect, de-escalation, and so on.

Human beings should be treated with respect and treated like they are innocent until proven guilty. Black people are human beings, therefore… Logic 101.

But for many conservatives, black people apparently don’t qualify for full “human being” status. Apparently neither do women.

If you ask any conservative about who has the right to tell them what they can or can’t do with their body, you will get fairly absolute answers about keeping the government’s hands off, and individual liberty, and freedom. But when it comes to women? All those rights go straight out the window.

How? Because for many conservatives, women, like minorities, don’t rank as fully human, they just don’t “matter” as much.

Hierarchy for some people leads to a paternalistic attitude, “we want to help/protect them” usually accompanied by “we know better what’s right for them”.

But for others, hierarchy leads to dehumanization. Dehumanization removes empathy from the equation.

If you can put people in a box and label that box sub-human, you are then free to exclude them from the category “human being” and in doing so allow everything from violation of their civil rights to outright murder.

One step further down the road from dehumanization, is demonization, which attempts to justify this horrible behavior.

All they have to do is associate Syrians or Muslims with terrorists, and it’s your duty to protect “us” from “them”, and if you fail to do so, we will crucify you with our SuperPAC’s hundreds of millions in attack ads.

The only way to fight creeping fascism, fear mongering, violations of the basic human rights of blacks, women, immigrants or anyone, is to grow some guts, start talking about “equality” and not stop.

We have to bring back the debate to what we all have in common, to basic human rights, to basic human decency, to empathy for our fellow human beings, no matter what religion they practice or what country they come from.

That means welcoming refugees.

That means criminal justice system reform.

That means a living wage and quality health care for all.

That means reproductive rights.

That means immigration reform.

That means taking basic progressive stands, which by the way, the majority of the American public support, and fighting for them like they are central to our beliefs as a country, not scampering away from them as though they were as far out on the Left end of the spectrum as Fox news claims they are.

That means addressing the American public in general and saying, it is no longer good enough for you to stand by and let the political people fight your battles for you. A line has been crossed. You need to get in the game. Because if you don’t, “it” could happen here.


Bernie on BET livestream tomorrow (Saturday)

Don't forget, tune in at 1 EST.


A call from DK for Bernie supporters

In every poll I have seen, Senator Sanders is stuck between 20 — 35%. Kos refers to this as Bernie’s ceiling and I suspect Kos is right unless something dramatic changes that. The debates, while beneficial for Bernie, have not changed the tenor of the race.

So, we are roughly (I’m too lazy to actually look a calendar right now) 90 days out from the primaries. What could change Bernie Sanders standing in the polls dramatically enough to give him a chance?

There are only three things that can do so in my estimation:

1. Massive outreach to people of color. I’m encountering this daily down here in Texas; African-Americans and Latinos all ask the same thing: “Who is Bernie Sanders?” It is no accident that his campaign staff in Texas are Latino. And it is no accident that they are explicitly telling volunteers — we have to reach out to people of color.

2. A vast number of person to person conversations addressing questions, concerns and needs of Democratic primary voters. Here in Texas, the first round will involve 850,000 contacts. That’s got to be completed in early December so we can start the next round.

3. Finally, and most importantly, a GOTV (Get Out The Vote) effort that surpasses what Obama achieved in 2008 and 2012.
What do all these things have in common?


If you do not volunteer, recruit other volunteers, and spend about two to six hours a week working on the Bernie Sanders campaign, we cannot win. It’s that simple.

Click here for more, links included.


Worth a read


Thought this worth sharing, Black Panthers and BLM

It's likely many of you have already seen this but if not ...

Comparing the 1960s and 1970s Black Panther Party and today’s Black Lives Matter movement reveals parallels and progress.

Stanley Nelson’s recently released film The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution juxtaposes the party’s justice movement against the Black Lives Matter protest campaign.

Conceived about 50 years apart, both Black Lives Matter and the Black Panther Party for Self Defense galvanized frustration with police brutality against black people in the US.

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