did you know that in a capitalist society time is money

fic: Smile Even Though You’re Sad

title: smile even though you’re sad

genre: au/romance

word count: 2700

description: dan is the son of a rich man, unwillingly studying business in London who wanders into a gallery looking for some quiet, and instead finds the happy-go-lucky owner with a camera around his neck, the nicest smile he’s ever seen and a knack for knowing exactly what to say.

a/n: thought i’d post a little mid-week fic to perk you up if you need some, erm, perking…?

read on ao3 here if you prefer.

“They gave me the designer clothes, the trust fund and the private education and they told me to be happy.”

“And are you?”

The steel of Dan’s gaze softens. He ruffles his hair a little and a single curl still manages to dangle across his forehead.

“You know, Phil, you’re the first person to ask me that.”

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anonymous asked:

Okay so I freely admit my knowledge of history absolutely sucks so this will sound stupid but - is communism a good thing or a bad thing??? I'm asking because I see SOOOOOO many conflicting ideas coming from people and everyone ends up contradicting each other, it seems like tumblr is very pro-communism but at the same time there are people on here who are absolutely disgusted with tumblr's "pro-communism" ideas and at the same time people praise Karl Marx and I'm just confused sorry.

okay, thing is, you have to make two distinctions. there’s theoretical communism and applied-in-the-real-world communism, and when it comes to theoretical communism, one thing is marx (which is why marxism is a thing and stalinism is another) and another are other communists who interpreted his thought often for political reasons. now I once had replied to a post on the topic which I never posted to avoid extra wank but I have it in my drafts let me see if I can c/p it… yeah okay no but maybe I can reuse parts of it.

anyway: communism is originally marx’s theory/system. marx conceived it in a society that was ALREADY CAPITALIST and its entire idea was destroying the aforementioned capitalist society which was founded on inequality and exploiting workers (like if you read the capital, it has chapters dedicated to child labor and how horrible it is just to mention one). communism is a philosophical and economical THEORY which does indeed look good on paper, its problem is that at most you could make it viable in small communities because it implies that everyone must be on board with it to make it work, that corruption doesn’t exist, that people do automatically their best for the others and the community/collectivity and a lot of other things that literally can’t coexist when your problem is basic human nature. never mind that marx’s system was based entirely on the situation in industrialized nations during the second industrial revolution and it’s entirely tied in that historical timeframe and it doesn’t take reading the capital for that, and now we’ve gone past that. never mind that not all nations go through what the UK did during the second industrial revolution. we’re past the second industrial revolution. marx’s system is not viable in reality because not many places are in those same conditions. never mind that marx himself knew that perfectly - ie, there’s a part in the communist manifesto which goes:

We have seen above, that the first step in the revolution by the working class is to raise the proletariat to the position of ruling class to win the battle of democracy. The proletariat will use its political supremacy to wrest, by degree, all capital from the bourgeoisie, to centralise all instruments of production in the hands of the State, i.e., of the proletariat organised as the ruling class; and to increase the total productive forces as rapidly as possible. Of course, in the beginning, this cannot be effected except by means of despotic inroads on the rights of property, and on the conditions of bourgeois production; by means of measures, therefore, which appear economically insufficient and untenable, but which, in the course of the movement, outstrip themselves, necessitate further inroads upon the old social order, and are unavoidable as a means of entirely revolutionising the mode of production.

These measures will, of course, be different in different countries. Nevertheless, in most advanced countries, the following will be pretty generally applicable. (….) When, in the course of development, class distinctions have disappeared, and all production has been concentrated in the hands of a vast association of the whole nation, the public power will lose its political character.

Political power, properly so called, is merely the organised power of one class for oppressing another. If the proletariat during its contest with the bourgeoisie is compelled, by the force of circumstances, to organise itself as a class, if, by means of a revolution, it makes itself the ruling class, and, as such, sweeps away by force the old conditions of production, then it will, along with these conditions, have swept away the conditions for the existence of class antagonisms and of classes generally, and will thereby have abolished its own supremacy as a class. In place of the old bourgeois society, with its classes and class antagonisms, we shall have an association, in which the free development of each is the condition for the free development of all.

now, why did I bold exactly those parts? because the last one states that communism’s eventual target is everyone living in an equalitarian union, and the second is to show that according to marx communism could be a thing IN ADVANCED COUNTRIES. industrially.

and here we arrive to practiced communism which is our problem. because thing is, communism on paper is great - equality! no one is exploited! everyone contributes as they can how much they can! no classism! - but in practice, it has never been introduced in nations that were already capitalist. it’s mostly been countries that either had a strong agricultural/rural economy or came from centuries of dictatorships/monarchy, which means that regardless of how much communism is viable as a way of life or not, it wouldn’t and couldn’t have been applied there the way it was supposed to because those weren’t capitalist countries. you can’t have a communist society without capitalism first. period. and when you try to merge the two you have today’s china which is basically the worst of the two systems put together, never mind that if you look at mao’s CV, the cultural revolution and the likes it doesn’t sound to me that it’s the best way of life for everyone as marx put it. (and to add to that by the way, just the exploitation of workers in china that allows us to buy for ridiculous cheap from there is the most anti-communist thing anyone could ever conceive. and I’m just mentioning one thing.)

when **communism** has been implemented in both russia and china and everywhere else it was a thing, it was never a capitalist country. add that as I stated above in order for it to work it means EVERYONE IS ON BOARD and the people in charge don’t exploit it and you have a recipe for disaster, because if you look at it everywhere it was implemented, regardless of how much they might have started decently, it turned into a dictatorship not long later.

so this whole ‘shit happened in communist countries and people died but communism is still AMAZING’ topic is ridiculous because thing is, if one grasps the spirit, the entire point of communism as an utopian society (because that’s basically the outcome of that at the end of it) is having a society of equals where everyone contributes for what they can, there are no injustices like in capitalist society and your worth as a person isn’t put after your capacity to produce money for someone else. any so-called communist system calling itself communist and allowing people to die/oppressing its citizens/exploiting workers’ labor without allowing them to have unions/creating gulags/silencing disagreeing opinions is inherently a system that marx would have loathed because it goes against everything he wanted out of his vision. like, especially exploiting workers’ labor. that’s the reason why historically why most unions were communist/socialist when unions started being a thing. never mind that marx called for criticizing the status quo/people in power who exploited it, which should automatically suggest that most people who praise communist regimes aren’t really marxist.

(now we could also discuss over how both communism and capitalism taken in their purist form don’t benefit anyone except the people in power and so the best way is midway, because capitalism does have good aspects same as communism does, and actually the reason communism was groundbreaking in its historical moment was because it put attention on the need for equality and better working conditions when most poor people were exploited by the upper class. theoretical communism advocated a world where everyone contributes according to their own capacities and doesn’t end up sacrificing themselves on the altar of factory work, and that’s not what has happened until now in real life. taking the best from either system is what actually does work all things considered - counteracting 100% bonafide capitalism with 100% bonafide communism, which by the way can’t exist today, is fried air, as we say in italy.)

so, at this point the thing is: if you’re anti-communism meaning COMMUNISM THE WAY IT HAS BEEN IMPLEMENTED IN THE REAL WORLD then you have a point or ten because most times it has betrayed its own roots (really, marx would have been horrified at basically everything **communist** regimes have implemented) and it has been a tool of oppression/communist dictators have killed thousands of people same as their fascist counterparts and so on. at the same time, if you like marx then you like COMMUNISM AS A CONCEPT THE WAY IT WAS ORIGINALLY INTENDED, as in, you like the idea of a society where everyone is equal and not exploited as above. it’s two completely different things - personally I love the idea of communism as marx presented it but I know it’s not viable and I wouldn’t say that stalin or mao were amazing people TM just because they were **communist** (tbh today’s china is like the most un-marxist thing ever soooo). and at the same time I’ll feel free to praise marx to the heavens because he was a genius, came up with an amazing philosophical system which then started irl a lot of good things ie workers’ unions as above and gave the left an ideology to aspire to and because he didn’t advocate for genocide, while I absolutely loathe most applications of communism irl (and in most cases when communist ideals work out it’s in *socialist* countries, not communist ones).

we can also add that kids on tumblr being pro communism most of the time just read ‘communism = equality’ and think OMG AWESOME when they haven’t read marx or a history book so they don’t know what the fuck they’re talking about so let’s not even count them into the discussion. but never mind.

tldr: communism as a theory/political ideology the way it was conceived was a good thing and is still a good thing if you take the good parts from it (tbh the US could totally do with some more marxism especially when it comes to reviving workers’ unions, striking when you want things and the likes), never mind that in western countries that were under the US influence post WWII and in european countries pre-WWI communist parties were generally the ones protecting workers/their rights to strike and pushing for leftist policies along with the socialist ones. communism as an actually applied system in the real world is almost always a bad thing because it’s not what marx conceived, it betrays its own roots and I can only understand people who grew up under the ussr when it was a thing (or eastern europe) who loathe communism since a communist regime was what fucked their countries over. (that’s also valid for places like cambodia and NORTH KOREA I mean in theory north korea is *communist* but there’s literally nothing communist about NK.) we can argue about cuba for the next century or so since when it comes to it there’s pros and cons (ie: castro was a dictator? yes, not good, not communist. everyone getting free healthcare and instruction including curing people from other countries? yes, good, marx would have approved. and so on.), but even if you consider cuba the only place where it sort of worked (sort of, because if you ask people who flew cuba they certainly don’t agree and really it’s so complicated only people who studied the situation for years or live there could give an opinion), cuba has eleven million inhabitants and it’s not CHINA or the former USSR, which makes it fairly more manageable to govern. same as I said above: it maybe sort of POSSIBLY worked out not somewhat in a small country. in large countries it’s just not a thing you can reasonably conceive.

so: some people praise marx because marx said a lot of good things, but being uncritically pro-communist means ignoring that communism when implemented (successfully-ish or not) has caused a lot of harm and isn’t that much different from other regimes, and that what marx preached was good for his historical moment and time, not for us, because the second industrial revolution is that and gone. never mind that people who come from communist regimes that hurt their nations or were political dissenters have all rights to be anti-communist, since as stated when applied irl it’s not what marxism preaches. and that said if you praise marx then you should criticize all of the irl applications of communism because marx would balk at pretty much 99% of what *communist* countries ended up being. but like there’s a lot of good in what marx says and that’s why some people say they’re communists - because they like it as a concept and want to make reality what they can of it, not because they approve of stalinism.

hopefully it was clear. xD

anonymous asked:

How do you afford such an expensive telescope? You seem to have lots of free time so I assume you don't have a full time adult job. You said you have two kids and you live with your parents? Are you one of those man child guys who has rich parents who pay for everything while you read books and preach? Where are you going with your life? Do you ask? You don't stress about supporting a family I bet.

1) That telescope was roughly $340, and I purchased it over 6 years ago during the summer I was laid off from a job I carried for 4+ years in order to support my family and keep consistent with child support. That job demanded everything from me. Within the first year I ended up in the hospital hooked up to an IV and served as a guinea pig for several muscle relaxers and pain relievers, all due to stress induced diaphragmatic spasms. While my son (now 10) was a baby/toddler, I had to travel out of town at random, forfeiting time with my son. 

So, when I was laid off in a really shifty way by the company that took more from me than it gave, I thought I earned that telescope, a small gift to myself, which would give me so much more in return. 

I’m going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you haven’t been following this blog for too long. 

2) I work as an enrichment provider through my local library, where I serve as a “LEAP Into Science” teacher for an inner city after school program, 5 days a week. That former job I had 6 years ago reached out to me recently to manage a promotional campaign in Boston for 20 days, so I accepted the contract gig because it’ll provide me with more than my current job could in the same time frame; however, I’ll be sacrificing an entire month away from my kids. 

No, I don’t have a “full time adult” job yet. I had two jobs, but the other abruptly had to close down due to financial struggles. And after I return from Boston, I’ll be continuing my role with the after school program as a substitute wherever and whenever needed every day through the remainder of the school year. Then, I’ll be leading a science summer camp through the YMCA, as I did last year as well. Not a “big boy” job as you say, but that’s the double edged sword of wanting to keep ones dignity…sacrifice a more comfortable financial lifestyle for the benefit of others whose lives will be effected beyond ones own. 

3) I moved back home to York, currently staying with my parents, yes. When my then fiance decided to move in a different direction and my then untreated PTSD was too overwhelming for her, my parents offered their support, and I’m extremely grateful. I took the opportunity to attempt bettering myself by getting insurance, setting up a new doctor, and committing myself to an SSRI, which I’ve been on for over a year, with dramatically positive results. Still, I’m torn and tugged upon, where one day I’m attempting positivity and elation to be alive; and the others, I’m anchored to not so healthy thoughts about everything and anything. It’s been a difficult battle to, courtesy of Paxil, become aware of how influential and disruptive and self sabotaging PTSD is, and the governance its had on my life. This first year has been a significant step forward but there’s more work to be done. 

4) I do have two children, who both live with their mothers, and I have them on the weekends. My “free time” is dedicated to them. When I’m not with them, I would hardly call it “free time”…more, distracting my mind from self loathing and defeat…time. Thus, Tumblr has been and will always be a healthy and safe space for me. 

5) No, I’m not a “man-child” who has their parents pay for everything while I “read books and preach”. Rather, I’m a complex human with complex problems just as everyone; and my parents have helped where and when they can. My mother is a physical therapist and my father owns his own tile installation business (no employees, just him). Wouldn’t call them “rich” by any means whatsoever. I’ve made more money than my mom throughout the years, and my father is busier than he’s ever been with work.

My love for reading is twofold: I read to further my education, broaden and diversify my perspective, and to escape. As far as “preaching” goes, I’m curious as to what you think a sermon of mine would entail…

Environmental protection/policy and human stewardship of the ecosystem?

The imperative of human spaceflight on our civilization and culture as a means to further preserve life and mature our species? 

Promote scientific literacy as a vaccination against ignorance and fear? 

Support resistance against hate, racism, stereotypes, fascism and an oligarchical capitalist society?  

Advocate for humanism and mental health awareness? 

6) I stress less about supporting my family now than I did before Paxil, that’s for sure. But I stress every day about supporting my family. However, Landen is taken care of well over at his mother’s place; and Huxley just the same. My children are loved, and have forged very close and genuine relationships and connections with me, for which I’m proud of, as a father. Nothing about my situation is ideal or convenient to me, no matter how well it seems to “work out” week by week. I still miss my children all the time when I’m not with them. It’s painful. 

7) Where am I going with my life? Do I ask? Of course I ask. And I have plans. But I also have idiosyncrasies and failings of human error that prevent me from pursuing everything I wish, along with significant financial woes. So much has happened over the last year, let alone the last 2.5 years. While I have this time here at my parents’ place, I’ve accepted that this is the port of call by which I must gain my bearings and chart a new course. 

“I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way.”  – Carl Sandburg

All of the above aside, I must say, I find it absolutely bewildering that an individual like yourself would take the time out of whatever kind of life you are living to compartmentalize and project so much bitterness and hate and contempt that you’d actually feel good about yourself sending me a message like this. Like, actually hitting “send” and thinking to yourself, “yeah…I made a good decision today.” 

I’ve genuinely and honestly shared with you a bit of my life, no matter how undeserving I felt you were to have it shared with. That being said, I ask that you politely go fuck yourself, and never message me again.

Money Pots and Prosperity Boxes.

Developing meaningful relationship with money.

*Put this together on a Thursday, during the Waxing to Full moon. Alterntively, Thursday sun rise to high noon works too, when the clockhand is going upwards on the clock (Thanks Mama Starr for this trick).*


Things you will need:

1. A suitable container (see below), something earth and made of more organic materials preferably like wood or clay.

2. A Lodestone, Master Root, Alraune etc. Properly gathered and prepared.

3. Money Drawing Powder and oil (see below for a simple recipe)

4. Change and bills from your wallet. 

5. Rum/Whiskey.

6. Holy Water/Agua Florida etc. 

7. Paper and pen.

8. Prayer and white tea lights (cleansed and blessed/prayed over).

9. Cigar/sage bundle/cigarello/smoke blend and pipe etc.


To bless a cash box, or a money pot in more rootwork terms, with a lodestone or Master Root or some other spirit filled curio that corresponds to wealth and power. 

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anonymous asked:

Tips on getting out of the habit of procrastination and getting shit done?

Firstly:

understand that at the end of the day, the most vital part of all this is accepting that you just have to sit down and fucking do it

I do have more tips but like… to get that out of the way it really does come down to just fucking doing it. And I know it isn’t easy – trust me, I know what it’s like to have absolutely zero motivation and to be so apathetic that I can’t even bring myself to do the simplest of tasks, and honestly I still have those days even now. But not as many of them. And it’s more hours than days now.

  • the thing is, it’s so much easier to stay motivated when you start seeing positive effects, but you can’t get those positive effects until you start doing stuff.
  • so like, start small.
  • (and i mean really small. start by like idk, making sure you brush your teeth twice a day or do the laundry once a week or write 100 words a day or read five pages of a book or something)
  • (idk what your mental state is but seriously, there’s no such thing as Too Small)
  • you will be so surprised at the positive effect that these small things will have once you start seeing results

Seriously, I thought it all sounded like some of that “um have you tried yoga to cure your crippling depression sweaty :)” bullshit at first but it deadass worked. It really is a lot about changing your frame of mind.

  • because it’s so easy to stay in one place like… it’s scarily easy
  • and once you’re stuck in that place it’s difficult to get moving because getting something moving is always the hardest part you know
  • did you know most of us possess the strength to easily push a car at some speed along a flat road
  • it’s just getting the wheels turning in the first place that’s practically impossible 
  • so like tl;dr getting started is the hardest part
  • literally
  • even keeping yourself going on hard days will be easier than initially getting over the urge to do nothing

…which is actually a good thing, because you’ll remember how difficult it was and you’ll say to yourself “wow, is skipping writing 100 words today really worth the week of effort it’s going to take to rev my motivation back up?”. The answer is no. What’s in motion stays in motion, and all that.

So say you get this out of the way. How do you keep going? I’ve found all the following help a ton.

keep a bullet journal oh my god

It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Some of the ones on here are so beautiful but like… that’s not my style tbh. Mine is purely practical, rather than both practical and creative. I’ve made it my own, but its primary focus is to keep track of things and hold me accountable.*

(*more on that later)

I have a simple spread. Each day has its own box and I jot things in that box that I need to do or remember, like…

  • the hours I’ve worked
  • fics i’m writing and how many words i need to write that day
  • errands that need to be run
  • bills that need to be paid
  • how many pages of a book i need to read
  • even stuff like setting aside an hour to queue posts or answer asks

I also have a weekly goals list to keep my daily goals moving in the right direction. It has all helped tremendously.

  • it’s so much easier to stay motivated when you have a set goal
  • honestly break things down into manageable chunks and go at them with a plan
  • things also seem less intimidated when they’re broken down into tiny chunks written in sparkly gel pen just saying

Related to this…

hold yourself accountable

To an extent. Setting unrealistic goals and beating yourself up for not making them = not good. Setting realistic goals and beating yourself up for being lazy and just not bothering when you know you could have done better is called self discipline. A decent amount of shame over your laziness is healthy. It’ll stop you from doing it again.

In the same vein, you can hold yourself accountable for making your goals. Reward yourself! Have a break! Have a day off if you can! Laze around and say to yourself hey, I deserve this, because I did all of this today!

  • the main thing is getting this balance right
  • @me a year ago no you can’t do one (1) thing on your list and then use that to justify doing nothing for the rest of the week ok
  • you will get it right eventually though
  • generally once you get the shame balance right

Bullet journals are good for this accountability stuff too.

  • it feels really good to tick off boxes
  • plus a visual record of your achievements is very encouraging
  • it also highlights what you have trouble committing to or focusing on
  • which is always good to know

It’s very good to know, actually, so you can do this:

balance work with play

My bullet journal isn’t full of tasks I don’t want to do. It would be a really depressing list otherwise, and not motivating at all. So I have fun things in there as well. I have stories I want to work on. I have books I want to read. I have trips pencilled in in a way I can cross off, like “go to Edinburgh” or “get the train to London”.

  • in this capitalist society this might be a controversial opinion but
  • you are still productive when you’re working on personal projects
  • productivity doesn’t strictly mean making money, or doing “proper” things like homework or chores or work
  • (even though that’s all stuff you should be including too)
  • your hobbies and passions are important
  • you are being productive if you spend a day reading about a passion
  • you are being productive if you spend a day writing
  • you are being productive if you spend a day in bed finally finishing that book you’ve been meaning to read for a while
  • seriously please remember this
  • just because it doesn’t seem “useful” or provide any financial gain doesn’t mean you’re not being productive
  • self-improvement is productive!!
  • doing things you enjoy is productive!!
  • so long as you’re doing something, you’re being productive!!

Learning this (and accepting it) was perhaps one of the best things I did for my productivity. There’s a lot of internalised shame, I think, that comes from doing things society tells us is “pointless” or “just” a hobby. Compared to school or work, it doesn’t seem “real”. While understanding your priorities is important, everything that has an impact on your life isn’t pointless or “just” anything. Yes, some days you’re going to want to read or write over studying for that final or going in for your shift, but that’s where the self-discipline will kick in. You’re not selling yourself out for understanding priorities. That’s called being a productive adult. And anyway, once you get the hang of this, you’ll have the energy and motivation to balance both.

And finally:

go at your own pace.

Please. There’s no rush. It took me a long time to get to the point where I was lucky enough that I could follow these steps and have them stick. I understand not all of you will be in the same place. I understand that for some of you, reading this will make you feel even more dejected. Please try not to feel that way. Remember what I said first of all: start small. There is no task that is too small. It’s all a starting point, and even if you only do that one thing, that’s one more thing than yesterday. You’re being productive. You’re getting shit done.

now for the tl;dr

Because this really did get long.

  • learn and accept that you’re going to have to force through a lot of “ugh I really don’t want to do this” to get things started
  • I really recommend keeping a bullet journal or at least some kind of to do list
  • kick your own ass if you have to (you will have to)
  • reward yourself too
  • balance things you enjoy with Actual Boring Adult Tasks
  • understand and accept that capitalism equates productivity with making money and this is bullshit and not true
  • remember everything you care about is important and worth devoting time to
  • go at your own pace
Lauren's Interview with Nylon- Women's March

“We’re all here, and our voices matter, and we outnumber you”


Fifth Harmony’s Lauren Jauregui sums up her decision to take part in D.C.’s historic Women’s March on Washington neatly: “I need to walk what I talk, you know?”

Talk, she does. At 20 years old, Jauregui is quickly becoming one of the most politically outspoken stars on the map, and can speak to everything from the crusade against Planned Parenthood to music industry sexism. In October, the Cuban-American came out as bisexual via an open letter to Trump voters that was scathing, to say the least. And on Saturday, she joined an impressive list of celebrities who took part in protest marches across the country and the world.

Though Jauregui admits the Women’s March marks her first trip to the nation’s capital for a protest, she says her interest in women’s rights issues sparked while attending an all-girls high school in Miami, Florida.

There, “it was instilled in me to be a confident and courageous woman,” the singer explains. “Every single girl that I went to school with is so inspirational and so powerful and so driven and so unafraid. I think that’s something we all need to instill in each other.”

To Jauregui, this also means ensuring that women of all backgrounds and experiences are included in an intersectional feminist movement. As a young woman who is a member of the LGBT community and belongs to an immigrant family, she jokes that she falls into “three categories” of minority.

It’s a diversity of life experience that extends to the rest of Fifth Harmony’s girl-power group as well. “We’re four women who are completely different ethnicities, completely different body types, completely different walks of life and opinions,” Jauregui says.

We caught up with Jauregui just after her arrival in D.C. to talk about her “overwhelming” experience at the march, the feminism stigma, and the power of millenials to make the next generation count. Watch Fifth Harmony’s performance at the People’s Choice Awards last week below, and scroll through for our Q&A with Jauregui.

Who and what are you marching for? I’m marching for human rights in general, because the upcoming administration has clearly made a statement about who they support and what kind of regime they intend to instill. I’m marching for women, I’m marching for the LGBT community, I’m marching for immigrants. I happen to fall into all three categories [laughs], so I’m marching for myself at the end of the day and for my family and my friends. And for whoever else deserves it. What were you feeling during the march? Over-fucking-whelmed. Present, aware, peaceful, and ready to go. The most amazing thing I’ve ever experienced in my entire life. I can’t believe that I witnessed the history that I did.

I feel like a lot of people felt so alone with this new administration coming in, and they felt so betrayed. This whole entire experience is a clear indication of the fact that… we are the popular vote. This is us, out here marching. All around the world, women united, and men united, and humans alike united, and we’re not going to tolerate this. We’re not going to tolerate a fascist regime, and we’re not going to tolerate you telling us that we’re not important. Because we’re all here, and our voices matter, and we outnumber you.

How did the march alter your perspective?
I’ve spent so much time in my head and in my notes and in my journals about how much pain this world is in and how upset I am that nobody cares. Going out there today and seeing how many people really care, how many people are so down to use their voices, how many people are willing to fight tooth and nail… it was just beautiful. I was so emotional at so many points. I cried so many times. This is democracy. We are democracy.

What was the crowd like?
It was the most incredible, humbling experience to be in the presence of so many humans who were so willing to come together. When I was there, we were trying to get to the bathroom and then trying to get back into the crowd, and it was absolutely impossible because it was so packed, and there was this woman who was in a wheelchair. We were trying to get up onto the ledge, and she was like, “use my wheelchair! Come on!” She literally let us use her as a stepping stool. It was crazy. Everyone was so helpful, helping each other out.

Do you think public figures like yourself have an added responsibility to be politically outspoken?
I think that in the entertainment industry particularly, people usually get into this business because they’re trying to just be the distraction for people. But for me, I don’t see the power in having a voice, and a voice that so many more people listen to than an average… I don’t feel right having that and not using it for the sake of educating. That’s why I think I was born and given this platform to begin with. I hate attention, I hate all of that kind of shit. But I think God gave me this voice for this purpose—to use it for the sake of uniting people and making sure that everyone knows that it’s okay to use your voice. You can be a young woman, and it’s okay to use your voice. You can be as strong as you want.

Growing up in Miami, you went to an all-girls school. How did that influence the woman you are today?
Honestly, I’ve been very blessed that I was able to go through Carrollton [School of the Sacred Heart]. I attribute everything that I feel and all of the passion that I have to that school. It’s an all-girls school, and it was instilled in me to be a confident and courageous woman. “Women of courage and confidence” was the slogan, essentially, of our school. I’m just so grateful because every single teacher I encountered, all of the administration, everyone involved, men and women alike, were there for the purpose of growth of each individual girl. And each individual girl was told how special she was and how much she could influence the world. I’m literally crying thinking about it [laughs]. Every single girl that I went to school with is so inspirational and so powerful and so driven and so unafraid. I think that’s something we all need to instill in each other.

The rise of Fifth Harmony is often framed as the return of the girl group. Why do you think your music resonates with so many young girls?
Some of our songs are empowering, but I feel like more so than our music, it’s who we are. We’re four women who are completely different ethnicities, completely different body types, completely different walks of life and opinions, and you can see that when you watch an interview, when you meet us. We have an energy about us that’s so unique and so intense, and it’s because of how much power we have in us as individuals, being confident, harnessing that power, and wanting to share that with other women. I feel like a lot of women hang on to our message, and it empowers them.

Have you always been so confident in your womanhood?
I’m really lucky, because I have a mother and a grandmother who always instilled my power in me, always, from the day I was born. And my father, too. My parents never made me feel like I couldn’t do something because I was a girl, ever. It didn’t matter what I wanted to do. My father supported me 1,000 percent, all the way, and never told me, “you can’t do that because you’re a girl.” And on top of that, the school that I went to, and the power I was given with my education. I’m really lucky, I got only power handed to me, and I made use of it, and I only want to share that.

What place do you think young people have in politics?
I think the youth is the movement. I think we are the ones who are starting this revolution, and we’re the ones who are going to see it carry through and be the ones to implement it. I think we’re in a really amazing time right now of consciousness awakening, the internet and all the connections we have to each other. All the young people involved right now, on the internet, seeing the injustice and having it there in front of their faces, it’s making them passionate and it’s making them aware. All the little kids I’ve ever talked to—little, little kids, like eight years old—they know what’s up. They’re like, “What’s going on? How is Trump president?” The fact that kids can differentiate that… I think the power’s in the youth.

You wrote in your open letter for Billboard that feminism needs “a lot of work.” How can we fix that?
I think the whole stigma of the word feminism is such a problem. The only reason that anyone has an aversion to it is because it includes the word “fem,” even though it’s an all-inclusive term. I think that aversion in general is the reason why we need [feminism]. If the word “feminism” bothers you, there’s a reason why it bothers you, and only because it involves women. The issue at the end of the day that feminism fights for is equality, men and women alike. Because men also have their own stigmas that they have to follow, and stereotypes they have to follow that are detrimental to their mental health. That’s something that happens to all of us, something we’re all experiencing. By harnessing that freedom, we’re saying, “no, I want to embrace this term because it means that I get to be free.”

Are you surprised by Donald Trump’s success?
I would say I’m surprised, but I also know there is a lot of hatred in the heart of the country. It’s kind of the basis on which [the U.S.] was built, essentially, because it was built on slavery—slaves were the ones who built it. I feel like people are really empowered by money, and that’s all that [Trump] offered, essentially, besides all of the other detrimental things he said. The only people who are able to look past that are people who value the economy over human rights. That exists because money is all-powerful in this society, it’s a capitalist society, so a lot of people feel like they have no option but to progress only economically.

Do you have any thoughts on the effort to defund Planned Parenthood?
Just how important it is to recognize how they are responsible for so much more than abortion. That actually, abortion only takes up three percent of what they do, and everything else is just about female health and reproductive health, and making sure that women have a safe place that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg to get the medical attention that they need. People are dismissing a foundation that genuinely helps millions and millions of women across the nation for the sake of, just, myth.

Would you ever consider going into politics as a profession?
I think if I do anything political, it would be activism. I don’t believe in our government, currently. I don’t believe in the way that things are going. I wouldn’t want to be involved bureaucratically, I’d want to be more activism.

Is there anything you want to say to fellow marchers? I love you, and we’re together. Let’s make some changes.

anonymous asked:

Please tell all you know about Henry Dana. Who is this man? The people need to find out.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow Dana (1881-1950) was the second grandchild of the poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.  His parents were Longfellow’s second youngest child, Edith, and Richard Henry Dana III.  Edith and Richard actually had lots of kids.

He’s the one with his hand on his hip, clearly destined for far more fabulous things than this Sound of Music kid lineup.

Harry grew up to cause his family (not to mention polite society at large) a whole lot of trouble.  In a world where Boston Brahmins were expected to be heterosexual, Protestant, capitalists in favor of the US’s involvement in World War I, Harry was………..exactly none of those things.

Harry Dana was really, really gay.  And an atheist.  And he kind of loved the Soviet Union a lot in its early days.  And he got fired from his professor job at Columbia because he was telling his students not to enlist in WWI.

Also the boy had nudes.  Multiple.  More than one nude.  Some of them artistic side-butt, others, well, the uncropped version of this promotional image from the Longfellow House Facebook page.

You can…figure out the rest, I think.

Harry was just really, really cool.  He knew he was a rich guy, and he tried to use his fortune for good.  He threw all sorts of money and resources at the Scottsboro Boys’ defense, for one thing, and he did a lot of work for labor-related causes.  The fact that the Longfellow House is so beautifully preserved and has so much STUFF in its archives is due in part to Harry’s work as an historian, cataloging and caring for generations of stuff (with the noteworthy exception of much of his uncle Erny Longfellow’s stuff–Erny disowned Harry and his older brother Richard IV for their far-left politics).

Sexuality-wise, Harry was, again, really really really gay.  Like, during his time in Europe up to the start of WWI, we know that he was with some of the same guys that Oscar Wilde had been with.  He was also a sort of gay guidance counselor for questioning/angsting Harvard kids, since he lived just a few blocks away.  He’d tell them they were okay, that there wasn’t anything wrong with them.  There was that time where he didn’t get the right message when he was having dinner with a guy and said he’d be right back, then came downstairs in nothing but a robe.  The guy was like “?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!” and he was like “sh IT FUC CK I’MSORRY i”m so rry I will be back with pants fuck this is embarrassing”.  That was awkward, and while he was extremely sexually available to the students, I mostly admire the fact that he was just willing to be there for these young people.

He was out and proud in the first half of the 20th century, and for the life of me, I don’t know how he did it.  He was utterly unapologetic about every aspect of who he was, and in everything I’ve read about him he just…

He seems so unafraid.

Harry’s life honestly wasn’t all happy, as you can imagine from him being out and proud in the first half of the 20th century.  And being a leftist of some variety during that same period in American history.  His relationships with his Uncle Erny and his father were pretty bad, mostly due to his politics but his sexuality probably entered into it, too.  He dealt with being fired, with being blacklisted, with being blackmailed and threatened, with the Longfellow House board of directors trying to throw him out of his own home.  He was too far left for much of the LGBT community at the time, and the communists he tried to work with sneeringly called him “Mrs. Dana.”  Harry suffered a nervous breakdown in the 1940s.  He made it through, but he didn’t last much longer than that.  McCarthyism would have destroyed him a few years later, anyway.  He was the last member of the Longfellow family to live in the house, and it’s been a museum pretty much ever since.

Wow, this got long, haha.  I have a lot of feelings about this guy.

Howdy!

Are you interested in learning a new language? Need something translated to/from Portuguese? Looking for something to read that suits your particular interests, or someone to edit your writing? Do you have money to spend in those things? If the answer is yes, pal, do I have good news for you!

As a modern man trying to have it all, I am qualified to help you with literally all of that! I can teach you Portuguese, and I can translate things, too. I’m also a writer and an editor! And guess what? I need money! In a capitalist society when someone has a skill and needs money they usually lend that skill to someone who needs it and has money, and that’s the world we live in, so here I am, being a capitalist pig. Because a boy’s gotta eat, you know, and Ramen doesn’t pay for itself.

Frequently Asqued Questions:

But couldn’t I learn a language on my own? Well, yeah. I did. But it’s hard and it takes years! Wouldn’t you rather have someone tailor lessons specifically to your needs?
But can’t I just use Google Translate? Yes, but you see, language is a living, breathing thing, that needs love and attention. Language is art, and a software can’t replace an artist.
But couldn’t I just look for new reading material on AO3? You could, but it wouldn’t be specifically tailored to your tastes and needs, now would it? Yeah, it’s a coffee shop au, but is it a coffee shop au with a robot alien barista and a cute werewolf kindergarden teacher in glasses and five colors in his hair? I didn’t think so.
But couldn’t I just edit my own work? Who has the time for that? I mean, I do, because I have nothing going on in my life, but you got better things to do! Go watch that cat video, or party, or eat ice-cream, or whatever it is kids do nowadays. Let me worry about all that pesky editing.
Local? We don’t live anywhere near each other! Well, physically, yes. But, as a child of the Internet, I am, and always will be, local to our cyber community, you know? It’s just a matter of perspective.

So, if you’re interested in supporting your local gay wordsmith, you can contact me through the ask box or the IM feature, right from the comfort of your very own Tumblr dot com! Pricing goes as follows:

Payment happens through PayPal, and everything happens over the internet, with no need for any kind of human contact. Neat, right? 

Regardless, I hope you have a fantastic day. Thank you, and I look forward to doing business with you.

With Love, 
Your Local Gay Wordsmith.

anonymous asked:

if you're open for taking questions, what do you think is the reason for why college keeps getting more and more expensive? i can't make sense of all the different theories and statistics.

Answering questions on this website is my favourite thing. It’s taking the time to do it that’s a bit tough, but if you can stay patient, I’ll get around to it eventually.

Overall, the biggest factor is the usefulness of debt to the ruling class and the consequent encouragement of it under Neoliberalism. Ideologically, there are two layers to Neoliberalism. The first is the stated one, that Capitalism is the only efficient way to structure human society, and the second is the hidden one, that Neoliberalism’s policies actually entrench obedience to the ruling class within people’s lives. In the case of university debt, turning things into markets and making people pay for more and more services is supposed to make them more efficient. It’s commonly stated that order evolves out of the chaos of humans pursuing their own interest, one that’s more efficient than if these humans had been told what to do in an effort to carry out the same goal. Capitalists implement these policies because they believe that they will make university cheaper or give better education or a combination of the two. In actuality, however, all this does is saddle students with debt, and debt is one of the most anti-revolutionary tools in existence. It’s ingrained in people’s heads that debts must be paid no matter what, even if they cause harm to the payer. I will work my measly dead-end job if it means the repo man won’t take away what little I have. A society in debt will rarely revolt, and when it does, its first thought will be to getting rid of the debt and not how to transform society so that debt never happens again. Having the most well-educated in society in debt before they even begin is a boon to the ruling class, even if it’s not a boon to actual economic growth.

Of course, this is only the why, not the how. For that, there’s a wide array of works on the matter, citing all manner of statistics, only a few of which played more than an minor role. I’m going to go with the ones I know were important. The first is the increasing role of economists as experts of everything that isn’t economics since WW2.

Back in the day, if you were an economist, you didn’t do much in the way of actual practical work. Most of the time, the government would hire somebody who had actually done the job to do planning for another one. When the Great Depression and WW2 came around, that all changed. The US government hired economists to figure out how to get everything going again, how to set the country on a war footing, and how the world would work afterwards (see for instance the negotiations between John Maynard Keynes and Harry Dexter White to establish the IMF and World Bank, in which numerous economists were enlisted to put their ideas into actionable plans). By the time the war ended, most had gotten used to their jobs as independent analysts and began starting up think tanks that did the same work on contract for the government. They were trusted by government figures, and soon became trusted by corporate and academic figures as well by making themselves useful to them in various ways. Soon, they were doing work in nearly every subject. Neoliberals jumped into the University of Chicago’s law department and then spread to the law departments of numerous other universities like a contagion. They claimed that corruption could only occur under the state, and any other transaction was under the purview of the all-powerful market that destroyed corruption. Academic managers worked under their advice, and economists were often appointed to head up universities directly, like Larry Summers at Harvard, Hugo Sonnenschein at U Chicago, Harold Shapiro at Princeton, or Richard Levin at Yale. They allowed the commercialization of all areas of the university. Drug companies could pay academics in the medical field to falsify research and then point to research done by people from the best universities in the business to sell their products. Banks could get economists to put their names on all manner of absurd derivatives and claim that they were safe enough to sell to pension funds as AAA-rated. And sports, god, sports. That discussion could go on for hours. Yves Smith goes a bit more in-depth about the process here

So of course all these economists were telling the government things like, it’s better to have student loans given out by private institutions rather than the government, because then they can work their magic and make everything so much more efficient. The only thing was, these lenders needed a bit of a push to lessen the risk to them, so the government said it would guarantee the loans, meaning the lender gets paid whether the student can pay or not. Consequently, a bank has a financial interest in lending to as many people as possible. Numerous lawsuits have been filed over the years over the amount of kickback money that travels between universities and banks to promote loans amongst students. Both groups knew they’d make a killing by financializing the entire process, so they did. This is the sort of corruption Neoliberals say can’t exist, because it doesn’t make sense in their theories. 

Guaranteeing loans rather than providing them also moves them off the books of cash-strapped governments, especially at the state level. Part of the Neoliberal onslaught was to lower taxes on the financial sector. Drops in capital gains and higher levels of income taxes meant that these governments needed to cut spending fast in order to maintain their bond ratings. Forcing the user to make payments is the point of the Friedmanite slogan “There’s no such thing as a free lunch”. It’s the idea of the tragedy of the commons, that if I don’t have to pay for something, I’m going to abuse it to the greatest degree I can. Thus, it was seen as perfectly fine for governments to stop funding poorer students as an easy way to cut costs, even a good thing, because it ensured they wouldn’t abuse it to take all sorts of useless degrees.

There’s also the Neoliberal-managed destruction of manufacturing jobs and the race to the bottom in wages. With the opening of the Third World to offshoring, especially through the Neoliberal ascendancy in China, US manufacturers resolved to break labour unions by moving high paying jobs that only required high school educations out of the country. They taught American workers that solidarity was pointless, that they couldn’t save their places of work, and that their only chance to fulfill the aspirational aspect of Capitalism was to act in their self-interest by going to a newly commercialized college. In part, this was a conscious strategy to maintain America’s dominance in the world. By forcing its workers to become the most educated workforce on the planet, but also ensuring they didn’t take less commercially useful educational paths, America could maintain its economic dominance over everybody else by making sure the manufacturing workers it did keep were the most productive in the world on the basis of massive R&D expenditures. The problem is, when demand for something increases, so does price, so that fueled the rise in education costs to some degree.

A little is from bloated administrations, but that mostly comes up because there’s lots of retired academics with pensions that need to be paid, and lots more needs to be spent on healthcare nowadays with rising costs there. Most of the big wage increases stem from the previously mentioned corruption, where people are getting paid out the ass to do side work for corporations. 

Simple solution? Nationalize it, streamline it under a single federal bureaucracy, and make it free for everybody with the costs paid out of taxes on future earnings and productivity gains. Problem is, this nets banks no money and gets nobody mired in debt, so it’s unlikely to happen. There’s also the issue that we don’t want it to look like Germany or China, where not doing well on certain tests gets you shunted into career paths whether you like it or not.

There’s also the question of whether student loans will end up going the same route as the subprime fiasco of 2007. The idea is, there’s no penalties for giving out loans that won’t be paid back, but these still go on banks’ balances as positive values. Especially with the wild securitization that goes on nowadays, these loans are going to be packaged in tranches and sold to other investors as risk-free. At some point, there’ll be so many that go delinquent that they’ll bring down banks, and then we’ll be in a recession again. I think there’s a good chance this happens, but only as part of another financial meltdown, with the failure of other income streams forcing the failure of student loans as well and contributing to the mess. Once again, another effect caused by Neoliberalism taking the upside of having an innovative, dynamic Capitalism with the downside of having massive destruction of wealth every decade.

anonymous asked:

what are your thoughts on min wage policy? like a link to someone else's blog post or author or something will suffice if its a hassle to explain for what is probably the 25.3th time

nah i dont think ive ever actually explained my thoughts on minimum wage ever since i quit clinging to the sort of conservative bullshit about how it doesnt actually do anything, so this would be the first time. 

anyway, i think its important to point out the very real situation that exists right now (in america in particular, although surely elsewhere) where the minimum wage is well below where it should be, as inflation has pushed the real value down.

as you can see, $7.25 (the current federal minimum wage) was really worth about $.75 MORE in 2009 when the current minimum wage was set. since then, inflation has caused minimum wage workers to gradually lose money, eventually about $.75 per hour. if we were to adjust for inflation, the current minimum wage, based on the 2009 number, should be $8.00. 

but the 2009 number, which was certainly not properly adjusted for inflation, is still off the mark, as the highest minimum wage ever was back in 1968, when it was raised to $1.60, which today is worth almost $11 (the BLS inflation calculator puts it at about $10.88). knowing this, minimum wage workers, and even people that work slightly above the minimum wage, have been slowly robbed over the years, currently about $3.63 per hour.

none of this is really new or revolutionary. left-liberals have been saying this sort of thing for years, and every now and then it results in a meager minimum wage increase so that the centre-left parties get a bit of a boost in the polls or whatever. its more about politics (and business) than actually helping the workers out. 

where minimum wage becomes useful to marxists is when its understood in relation to capital. in his 1865 speech, which has since been published as “value, price, and profit”, marx says,

“A general rise in the rate of wages would result in a fall of the general rate of profit, but, broadly speaking, not affect the prices of commodities.”

this means that by increasing the minimum wage, you are forcing the capitalist to push more of their capital toward labor, resulting in a (temporary) decline in the rate and volume of profit. 

the common conservative argument against this is that the businesses would have to make up for the loss of profit by raising prices and/or letting workers go. while talking up the harm a minimum wage increase would do to capitalists, they conveniently ignore the effects it has on workers. one, of the many immediate effects, would be that a higher wage means an ability to consume [purchase] more. if anything, this would have a positive effect on businesses. more sales means a higher rate of production and a higher rate of production means the necessity for more workers. if taken into account, any workers that were let go could then be immediately rehired. any prices that were raised, would be general (the price of every commodity will not go up by the same amount that your wage did. a minimum wage jump from $7.25 to $10.00 will not bring the price of every item on wal-marts shelves up by $2.75), and would more than likely fall with increased competition. 

all of these things taken into consideration, business would be better off NOT firing workers, since they would need those workers (and possibly more) almost immediately as production must necessarily increase and it often costs a good deal of money to hire new workers anyway, so most capitalists would recognize that they would actually save money by doing “business as usual”, and keeping things going as they were, knowing that they’ll be able to raise their profits soon enough. 

another thing about a minimum wage increase that would be good for business is the effect it would have on the psychology of workers. in many ways, when people are able to meet their needs, they perform better. they aren’t as distracted in the workplace by outside stress, and so productivity often increases. the increase in minimum wage also often justifies an increase in the intensity of labor, so profits do not take as big of a hit, or even a hit at all, potentially creating an increase in profit. 

in this way, conservatives are right that the market would essentially stay the same, but only from the business standpoint, which is of course the side of the economy that they serve, so they have little interest in consumer politics, and absolutely none in labor politics. to the working class, this wage increase allows for a bit of breathing room, which is much needed, but can also be used against us, as it relieves some of the burden of capitalist society, leaving many workers with the idea that capitalism can work in their interests if they just vote for the party that pretends to care about labor the most. 

the marxist standpoint often recognizes the uselessness of reformism by itself, but that is not to say that we dont acknowledge that certain reforms are potentially more revolutionary than others. many marxists would, for example, cling to trotsky’s transitional program, which was a list of demands that were supposed to unite the working class in a struggle to achieve them, eventually leaving workers disillusioned with capitalism and realizing that the entirety of the program could only be achieved through socialist revolution. a positive effect would also be that as demands were met, the working class would grow more powerful and recognize that power, rather than shrinking under the pressure of the bourgeoisie. even if demands weren’t met, many workers would just be that more unwilling to compromise with the ruling class that denied them those things, and would become more and more revolutionary. this sort of thinking is a large part of socialist alternative’s platform, and they aren’t just settling for a $10 wage, but fighting for a $15 wage, which just goes to show that they are setting the bar much higher than many workers are forced to accept, and they are actively struggling for its realization. if you look up in seattle, where the majority of this work is being done by kshama sawant and other members of the organization, you’re seeing a lot of local businesses that are actually supporting the wage increase. funnily enough, you’re also seeing conservatives point to certain businesses closing down, trying to prove the logic of their position, but reporters from think-progress (among others) have been refuting these statements. 

a similar standpoint, and certainly one that was more prevalent in marx’s time, was that those things could be achieved through unions, and that certainly was the case in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, as workers banded together and grew more and more militant, but many of the things achieved in those days were undone or suppressed by neoliberalism, especially after the height of the cold war. sadly, unions aren’t nearly what they used to be, so this isn’t nearly as possible at the moment, but you’re starting to see a collective push away from the politics of neoliberalism with things like OWS and the many anti-austerity protests that are happening all over the world, which suggests the possibility of a more progressive (and militant) generation that may be willing to return to unionization, or perhaps come up with entirely new ideas of how to struggle against capital. 

it is important, however, as ive already stated, to recognize this struggle as an ongoing one that is good for labor, but also for capital, and acknowledge that this will keep on going for a long time if our goals are only short-term and we focus solely on the minimum wage, letting left-liberals occasionally speak for us every few years when the inflation becomes too much to where it even starts to hurt profits. as marx says in his conclusion of “value, price, and profit”,

At the same time, and quite apart from the general servitude involved in the wages system, the working class ought not to exaggerate to themselves the ultimate working of these everyday struggles. They ought not to forget that they are fighting with effects, but not with the causes of those effects; that they are retarding the downward movement, but not changing its direction; that they are applying palliatives, not curing the malady. They ought, therefore, not to be exclusively absorbed in these unavoidable guerilla fights incessantly springing up from the never ceasing encroachments of capital or changes of the market. They ought to understand that, with all the miseries it imposes upon them, the present system simultaneously engenders the material conditions and the social forms necessary for an economical reconstruction of society. Instead of the conservative motto: “A fair day’s wage for a fair day’s work!” they ought to inscribe on their banner the revolutionary watchword: “Abolition of the wages system!“

151124 “An Eric - Starry Night”, a Fan’s thoughts on the Shinhwa’s Leader

Note: A little hesitant to translate this as it’s mostly a thought of a fan and it does not represent how Eric feels or what he thinks about Shinhwa and himself.  That said, it does give insight of how it feels as a fan.

What some fans may perceive as a “pity” toward the load of responsibilities Eric carries as well as scarifying his own time (yes the company doesn’t stop running even if they’re not in the smack of a comeback) & materials things for Shinhwa & Shinhwa company but does Eric feel that way?

There’re time we wish Eric to prioritize his own activities a little more, has a drama/movie every year like he used to before there is Shinhwa Company.  BUT, more than 10 years ago, the moment he said this to Bulsae PD back in 2004 at the height of fame & popularity, he had chosen which path he’s going to walk.  He did not just talk the talk but he walked the walk didn’t he? When one accomplish what he or she set out to do, isn’t that a great accomplishment already?

Once Eric was asked to define “success”, his answer was “Success starts with balance and satisfaction with your own life” - 2013 People Inside

Fame, popularity obviously are not on Eric’s book.  Different people have different goals and things they set out to seek. As long as they achieve what they look for, it’s all that matters isn’t it?  As for material things, we are not worry for Eric.  Not showing it off isn’t not having.  If he’s in no rush of making money with his solo activities, isn’t it a good sign he’s not in any financial stress? (or so we hope 😃).  Any way, here’s the post!




Note: “Hyogi” is a nickname that Korean fans use to refer to cute & endearing side of Eric.  It’s a wordplay from “Hyuk” of Mun Jung Hyuk.


Tonight is the night I can’t stop thinking about Eric, especially after talking about Shinhwa and their trademark issue.

During the concert, Kim Dong Wan said,

“Eric contributed a great deal of help during the trademark trial.”

Seeing how he even went ahead to solve problems related to financial issues, it hits me hard that great responsibilities follow great strength.

Great responsibilities follow great strength, and great money follows great responsibilities.

Obviously, what I’m trying to focus on right now is not the money. However, I know far too well that money is the best thing in this world and what Eric did is an amazing, yet uneasy choice to make, especially in this capitalist society in which endless accumulation of wealth underlies.

Eric is someone who just walks around smiling like a baboo.

Even though I go all like, “My baby, my baby, my precious Hyogi” and treat him like a prince, I can’t help but to think that somethings that Eric does make him seem so unfamiliar.

But obviously, in a good way.

It’s not like I’m the one who gave birth to him, but whenever I read stories related to Eric’s responsibilities, I don’t know why I always get these overwhelming emotions as if my own kid went around doing good deeds.

Was it on Radio Star? Eric said that the only reason why he was chosen as the leader was solely because he’s the oldest..

If someone who’s anything but the confronting type was given the leader position, I wonder who will compensate for the weight of responsibility Eric bears alone.

I wonder if elderly mothers feel this way whenever they watch their sons from afar, carrying rice over their shoulders and heading to the city.

Feeling proud is another thing. As of right now, worries overlap worries and just pains my heart.

Seeing Eric walk around with a silly smile on his face, I die a little inside with cuteness overload. However, when I hear stories of Eric, and not the Hyogi that we all know of, sadness weighs down the heart of Hyogi’s mom – which is me.

I know that he is the one who takes on the company’s accountability and the responsibilities linked to the title, and that he’s keeping his sense of responsibility due to the incentive that comes back to him,

But I want to ask exactly how many people will take the responsibilities of the unwanted title others give them to carry.

Maybe this is why I’m so sad about him.

Who knows he could be weighing down his own shoulders voluntarily, even though it’s completely unnecessarily.

I know it’s wrong to discourage people about their responsibilities, but my point is that, who will make up for the amount of heavy load Eric is carrying?

Not just that, Eric is not the type of person who does good deeds and expects things in return. That is why my heart feels even more uncomfortable.

He doesn’t like fighting up for things,
He hates being superior.
For that, I feel double the sadness for him.

The audiences focus on characters who silently fulfill all their tasks in books, movies, and dramas, but that’s not the case in real life.

In work, do clumsy people who just works all day long grade up their position faster? That’s not true.

When Eric mentioned in Healing Camp that he chugged down a whole bottle of alcohol and called his dad, my heart was tearing apart.

That’s when my sadness and targeted anger came rushing in.

I wondered why such a big weight was given to this person.

Whenever I look at my adorable baby, sadness begins to burst out and overflow.

That is why you shouldn’t use the “Big oppa” word so easily.

At least, to me.

Not until you realize the heavy weight underneath the familiar “Big oppa” word.

I’m just so sad.

I’m so sad watching Eric, who does not know how to use cheats and tricks.

I’m so sad watching Eric, who’s always embracing all of the world’s responsibilities to himself.

Eric, who’s always putting himself in the backseat when in comes to Shinhwa.

Eric, who’s always carrying the weight that’s not his to carry and solving problems alone.

Eric, who’s always trying to handle things by himself.

While having a little conversation, something that 어썸봉 said the last time just straight-on nailed my heart.

“Eric is anything but the extravagant type who enjoys luxurious living. He saves money by shopping prudently at home… (online shopping). He must have earned heaps of money from all of the past activities, yet he resembles a Mom who never invest on herself and only saves money so that she can contribute to her kid’s marriage.” (Yet, he’s generous with the people he works with, like treating everyone to a $100 steak dinner in Hongkong).

It ached badly to read that.

Although I’m not fond of cheesy posts, the sadness in my heart was just too strong that it led me to do so.

He always have such a pretty smile on his face like this, but I wonder if his heart is darken with sadness.

I wonder if anybody is even aware of that.


I don’t have anything I can do for him, but all I know is that my little baby is the most beautiful person in this world. (Note: she doesn’t mean beautiful as the physical appearance but the inner beauty)


Though the lyrics doesn’t really have anything to do with this, this song just screamed “What’s on my mind”.  Listening to this track, I wrote this post in sadness and unknown anger while thinking, “What is inside of Eric’s head.”

Translation: EricMun.tumblr
Source: dkgk1024 @naver


The more I contemplate the present day vegan movement, the more I am struck by how bland and watered down and mediocre the whole thing is. Like, so many vegans do not see it as an offshoot of anti-capitalism, which it should be, but rather this weird commoditized moral superiority thing. Like, under our present day capitalist system, being a moral & ethical consumer is basically impossible. So why do so many vegans act as though their morals are superior to those who are not vegan? I mean, what is veganism in itself, as a diet/lifestyle, really doing to end the cruel treatment of animals? I mean, I guess by itself it’s simply a boycott, which I’m not saying isn’t an act of rebellion, but it’s probably the least valuable or effective kind of activism. It’s actively demonstrating that you do not support our present day animal agriculture system, but it’s bourgeois activism at best. Like, in order to be fully vegan, you have to be pretty privileged economically and health-wise. You’ve got to live somewhere with resources as well as have enough time to put in the dedication that a vegan lifestyle requires. Under capitalism, most people cannot do this and to enforce some sort of moral thing on these people could even be considered almost as unethical as the thing vegans claim to be fighting against.

When your activism still upholds classism and ableism, honestly, your activism is fucking useless. Like, I would rather live in a society where classism and ableism did not exist than a society, which was vegan but allowed for human lives to suffer instead. Like come on! I am not here for that fucking bourgeois activism.

For veganism to be a movement taken seriously, because right now, it definitely is not, it needs to be a part of the whole “end exploitation for all living beings” type of activism. Which is why I’m vegan and I need to recognize that my ability to be vegan is because I am privileged. I am healthy, I have money, I have time and resources. I’m able to make this kind of ‘moral’ choice.

Also the present day animal agriculture system will not be stopped by a boycott. The revolution will not come out of bourgeois activism. FUCK NO.

I am all here for the liberation of humans and animals from labour! I am all fucking here for that but like, a lot of vegans are only for the liberation of ANIMALS from labour and!!! What the hell????? Um, no! If your ability to maintain a vegan lifestyle comes at the cost of already marginalized people then YOU ARE NOT RADICAL. You are not revolutionary. You are perpetuating the system that I want torn down and we are not on the same damn side here. I want everyone to be free from capitalism and I want no ones bodies commoditized and objectified and I want everyone to be free from labour!!!!

Also, a lot of vegans do this weird thing where they go, “TO EVERYONE WHO CAN GO VEGAN! GO VEGAN!!!!!”

And it’s like, yeah? But by saying that, you’re basically admitting that you don’t care that we live under a system which forces people to be complicit in animal cruelty. You want those who can go vegan to go vegan but like, that does NOTHING for those who cannot go vegan, the already marginalized people who need the activism way more than privileged people. You are admitting you will do nothing to fix the system that oppresses those people by only targeting your activism towards people privileged enough to participate in your watered down bourgeois bullshit. I mean, by all means, go vegan! I love being vegan and I would never stop for anything, but please do not act as though those who benefit from the system are really going to change anything unless they’re a part of the bigger picture, ya know?

Veganism as a diet/lifestyle does not see the big picture. I cannot stand when I see a photo on tumblr or instagram or wherever of some vegan meal with the caption “cruelty free!!!” Like. oKAY. LeTs PreTenD that those PEOPLE who grew the grains you eat don’t experience cruelty, let’s pretend that the people who packaged the food are not treated cruelly, let’s fuckin pretend you are actually saving the goddamn world. LET’S PRETEND THAT MEAL DIDN’T COST UPWARDS OF $20.

Reminder: capitalism repurposes radical thought in order to exploit those who want to make a difference. Trust me, if veganism were really radical, capitalism would never allow it. This is why only those who benefit from the system are allowed to participate in this kind of activism. Because their activism will never seek to abolish the system from which they benefit. The only way to end this exploitation is to abolish the system in which exploitation is required in order for it to exist.

anonymous asked:

"Hurt us so bad we can’t stand to be present in our bodies. " The body I changed through transition IS my body. I live in it, I fought hard for it. Like you, we want to live in our skin with integrity, and you act like we're selfish/delusional. We fight for transition because doctors told us we were "just mentally ill" for decades, and used that to justify making a lot of us suffer with what we were born with. MOST people think "changing your body" is undesirable/deviant on principle.

Of course your body doesn’t stop being your body if you transition or otherwise change it. It’s always going to be your body no matter what. I was referring to not feeling present in one’s body as one of the distinctive experiences of being dysphoric and saying that this can be caused by trauma and sexism. 

I know from firsthand experience that transitioning can relieve dysphoria but I don’t think that it’s only treatment or the best one. Both times I took t, it made me feel significantly more present and connected in my body. So much so that I came to believe I must have a biological condition. Eventually though, I found other ways to be present in my body and these methods brought me more peace and healing, more than I actually realized was possible. I had found some relief and happiness taking t but nothing like I’ve found accepting myself as female. For years I didn’t believe I could ever accept my body as is and didn’t even think of her as female. I was shocked by how good I felt when I finally accepted myself as a woman because that possibility had been unthinkable for so long.

A lot of trans people like to talk about gatekeeping and how bad it was in the past but I personally haven’t met a single trans person who had a hard time accessing transition as long as they had the financial resources. I lived in a major city were the local LGBT clinic would give out hormones at a significant discount so anyone one who wanted them could afford them. I’ve heard of other clinics that give them out for free. It took me all of two therapy sessions to get my letter the first time I started and I just had to tell my provider I wanted to go back on to get it the second time. It has only gotten easier to get hormones over time. Over the last ten years I’ve watched more and more people transition at younger and younger ages. This is becoming an established market and as long as this demand remains high and continues to grow, I see no signs of our capitalistic society cutting off the flow. 

I see very little threat of doctors trying to restrict who transitions because, like I pointed out in my last post, I don’t see why they’d really want to. They may have been more conservative in the past when transitioning was more stigmatized but now that the trans movement has become a celebrated cause among progressives, they can sell their products and look like good liberals at the same time. They have more incentive to stifle criticism of transition than to stop people from doing it. There now many professionals whose careers are based on providing counseling, hormones and surgeries to dysphoric people. Why would they want to decrease their consumer base? I don’t see the medical industry in general as being out to actually help people. In the end it’s just another industry trying to make as much money as possible. 

And while we’re on the subject, there are multiple billion-dollar industries devoted to changing the form and appearance of people’s bodies, ranging from dieting, working out, tattoos and piercing, cosmetic surgery, and make-up. It’s a lot easier to find people with modified bodies than people without so in that way I’d say trans people are pretty normal overall. Sure, plenty of people freak out about how other people change their bodies but chances are they’ve changed their own at some point in their life.

When trans people care about having access to transition so much that they disregard those who’ve been harmed by it, yeah, they are being selfish.  Putting your desires ahead of other people’s well-being is selfish.  It’s perfectly possible to work for having access to transition and acknowledge it’s not the only way to deal with dysphoria and that sometimes people are harmed by transition. Instead, a lot of trans people  work to silence any criticism of transition and any alternative explanations for dysphoria or how to treat it. I would consider insisting, as many trans people do, that transition is the only true way to treat dysphoria as silencing and erasing other treatment options. 

I have been personally hurt by trans culture and discourse and so have other women I know. I was a part of the trans community for most of my adult life and now I’m reflecting on my time there and how it affected me and the decisions I ended up making. And what I’ve been realizing is that a lot of the prevailing ideas hurt me.  In some cases I could probably go back and find the books or the websites where I first picked those ideas up. I can name some of the people who influenced me.  A lot of what I was encouraged to think by trans discourse kept me trapped in my damage. It got in the way of me working through my trauma, it did not help me heal. My life has improved a lot since I start thinking about and interpreting my reality outside of a trans framework.

You can talk all you want about how transitioning helped you and I can talk about how it hurt me and how the trans community and medical establishment are implicated in harming me and other women. I may have decided to take t but I would’ve never had access to it without a clinic willing to provide me with a prescription and take my money. I wouldn’t have interpreted my feelings as proving I was trans and needed to change my body without trans culture and community influencing my perceptions. And, just so as not to forget the root cause, I would have never felt dissociated from my body, would never have felt like I couldn’t really be female or a woman, would never have acted out my hatred of myself as a woman and a lesbian on my body if I hadn’t grown up in a violent, mindfucking, life-hating patriarchy. 

How The Replicator Destroys The Federation And Leads To Humanity Becoming A Slave Race to the Vulcans

This from your friend and mine, Professor Zach Feinstein (here’s his Star Wars / Empire brought down by economics email!).  I would like to thank him for showing me the respect of referencing episodes by season and broadcast number, knowing that I clearly have all episodes memorized in this manner.  Here we go.  His words, my sassy picture captions!


Statement 1: Replicators exist and are widely available to any human (i.e., not just Starfleet officers or the wealthy).

Gimme, oh, some chicken, three glasses, and a bottle of brown.  Corked, please.

Evidence: We can justify this statement since: 1. according to TNG Ep. 1x26: money has become obsolete [so idea of “wealthy” no longer can exist in the traditional sense] and humans no longer care for materialism [so assuming “wealth” means access to a replicator is inconsistent with Picard’s comments as it can only provide material objects]; 2. if only military officers had access then humanity would live in a fascist regime, which (for the moment) let us assume is false.  

Further, while never depicted within canon (to the best of my knowledge), we can further justify wide-spread replicator adoption since the first could just be used to replicate new replicators (and thus an exponential growth of replicators could be manufactured) thus supply and demand would make the value of a single replicator essentially worthless from a capitalistic standpoint once they were being sold.  

The only other reason why some humans might not have access to a replicator is due to the power requirements.  Having a single replicator would require immense amounts of energy (e = mc^2), but it is rarely remarked on the energy needs.  In Voyager there were replicator rations at times, but even with an energy crisis the replicators were able to still function when necessary.  This implies that under normal circumstances, and particularly in a stationary habitat such as a planet, unlimited and free energy (or close enough for all practical purposes) energy is available.


Statement 2: Assuming wide-spread replicator use, humans lose economic incentives to work or join Starfleet (save for a select few).

In this image, we see Picard feeling a little… blue.

Evidence: There are many jobs that people would volunteer to do for enjoyment or adventure.  However, for every Starfleet captain there are hundreds of junior officers who are worried about their prospects at a promotion (see e.g. TNG Ep. 7x15) or those that are actually stuck in a path with no chance for promotion (TNG Ep. 6x15).  In an economic system someone would stay in a job they don’t enjoy or feel they are underutilized for compensation.  But free energy/necessities mean that compensation is unnecessary.  So at the first hindrance most people would resign.  This would especially be true for the service jobs that remain.  Yes people would want to travel through space, but the ships must be maintained which requires specialized skills and knowledge.  So each ship needs an engineering section, and the rest of the “crew” just has a pleasure cruise?  That would be a very unstable relationship and would quickly lead to mutiny.


Statement 3: Assuming wide-spread replicator use, Vulcans would not lose the incentives to work.

What does that thing Spock messed with even do.  Why does it kill everyone if you take the lid off.  Why did we build one into our engineering meeting room.

Evidence: “The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.”  So while optimal for the individual to be content with the necessities, it is optimal for society if everyone continues to contribute.


Statement 4: Vulcans advise humanity on issues of galactic importance. 

This is an “I’m gonna tell you what to do” face if I’ve ever seen one.

Evidence: As noted on Memory Alpha: “The Vulcans eventually became Earth’s "big brothers” in a way, advising Earth officials on how to proceed into the galaxy.“ Additionally, the rulers of humanity would recognize the useful analytical skills of the Vulcans thus employing them as advisors.


Conclusion: Vulcans manipulate humanity into becoming a slave race.

And it’s probably all Janeway’s fault.

Evidence: Given the evidence stated above, we will assume Statements 1-4 are true.   Humans lack economic incentives to do any kind of work.  They are left with just one kind of incentive: the hope for power.  This is an unstable system though since, as mentioned in Statement 2, the moment an obstacle would be placed in front of advancement, the person would almost invariably choose to resign.  However, since replicators would have been introduced slowly (as the technology matured), this would not be an immediate shock to the system, allowing for the prior system to perpetuate itself to some degree.  But once wide-spread replicator technology is introduced it would create massive unemployment and instability (which seemingly does not occur as it is never depicted or referenced).  This implies that there is an element of "bread and circuses” going on to keep the political system in place.  This can only last for so long as the “best and brightest” may also be contented thus leading to suboptimal outcomes.  

“See, what I did here was, I put in a picture from the episode with the same name as the words Zach used.” - Me in my acceptance speech for my future Best Tumblr Presentation Of An Email You Didn’t Write award

The Vulcan advisers (Statement 4) would keep trying to advise as best they can (Statement 3 + assumption the Vulcan race is benevolent towards humanity).  But at what point do the humans stop making the decisions and start passing all decisions off to the advisers to begin with.  And with many of the best and brightest not making it to the top ranks of society because they are contented already (Statement 2), those that are at the top may not have the wherewithal to handle it.  And what leader who has tough choices not “pass the buck” in case it goes wrong?  So Vulcans would be making the big decisions for humanity.  And humans are still desiring to join Starfleet in apparently massive numbers, so something broke the incentives argument (Statement 2).  This means Vulcans have found a way to bypass human economic rationality, which means they either are a master race to humanity or just well positioned to be one if they ever chose to do so.  

It may sound like humans could take decisions back from Vulcans and return to the strictly advisory role as before.  However, likely the new generation coming up the ranks would look to the Vulcans as always having had that power.  It is why power once taken is rarely given back freely.

Live long and prosper.  It’s more profitable for us that way.

Additionally, just to point out a suspicious piece of information that is not strong on its own, but powerful with the rest of the argument provided: Vulcans began strongly prioritizing science over Starfleet beginning in the 23rd century.  This happens to be the exact point when replicator technology was first being introduced in industrial settings (and thus beginning the economic arguments above).  The logical Vulcans would clearly have noticed where this was going and performed the soft coup to keep humanity “stable” but also provide benefit for Vulcans (give the dangerous and undesirable jobs to humans and leave Vulcans the positions of prestige: diplomats, scientists, webcomic artists, etc).  This suggests that humanity has been enslaved already, but just doesn’t realize it. 

Really Quite Frankly: This blog will continue to call out those who act irresponsibly.

(Once again with apologies to Stephen A. Smith)

This afternoon, as I was browsing the posts of some of our esteemed comrades here on tumblr, I saw, much to my chagrin, that our comrades were once again discussing That One User.

Why, followers? Why? Why do you dare ask?

Do you think that we want to talk about them? Do you think I do?

Do you know how starving I am to talk about good stuff that is happening in the realm of social justice? How starving I am to talk about the season premiere of My Little Pony that is just over 24 hours away? How starving I am to talk about anything that’s fun loving or about fighting the good fight?

Do you have any idea how desperately I’ve wanted to talk about this stuff for almost a year now?


But unfortunately, I haven’t had much of an opportunity to do so.

If it wasn’t That One User, it was That One Reviewer.

If it wasn’t That One Reviewer, it was Dragondicks.

If it wasn’t Dragondicks, it was Ted Anderson.

If it wasn’t Ted Anderson, it was Anita Sarkeesian, Zoe Quinn, Brianna Wu, or John McIntosh.

Hell, it wasn’t even just individuals it was entire groups!

If it wasn’t DWM, it was the MLP hate dumb.

If it wasn’t the hate dumb, it was the fan dumb.

If it wasn’t the fan dumb, it was SJW’s.

If it wasn’t SJW’s it was anti-Gamergate.

If it wasn’t anti-Gamergate, it was Cracked.

If it wasn’t Cracked, it was the SU fan dumb.

If it wasn’t the SU fan dumb, it was tumblr feminists (although one could argue they could basically fit into any of the above categories).


And that brings us to today. That One User announced in a post (which I will not be linking to here as I do not wish to give them any more attention than they’ve already gotten) that they were re entering the Social Justice scene. They also went on to say that they were not going to have anything to do with MLP G4 or its fandom.

Now I want to give them the benefit of the doubt. I really, honestly do. I’m a guy who believes in second chances, I believe that America is the land of second chances. But based on what we’ve seen from this person…let’s just say that right now I’d be inclined to trust Fox News or MSNBC more than them.

But I’m a guy who believes in fairness. And so, as policy on this blog, I will not be talking about them unless they do something that warrants me to talk about them.


But there will be those who still wonder why I’m doing it. Especially after all the times this person was discussed by this blog and others at various points over the past year.

And these people ask us.

Why are you talking about this person?”

Why are you talking about this internet critic?”

Why are you talking about people that hate <internet subculture name here>?”

Why aren’t you talking about good stuff that’s happening in social justice?”

Well you know why? Because we don’t have a choice!

You haven’t given us much of a choice!


It would be one thing if we just sat here and talked about That One User on a constant basis, even when they hadn’t done anything worth discussing.

But I just gave you a list of people and groups that have been discussed at this blog and others over the past year. One after the other. The timing of it, good lord!

You can’t help but find yourself asking “How does this keep happening? This onslaught of ignorance.”

What the hell is going on?

That’s what you find yourself asking.


Tumblr has a big time image problem. So much that Yahoo is losing money on its investment, and it’s considered a more hostile environment than 4chan.

And it needs to be said that we can’t taint all, or even most, of the users here in such a negative light.

This is the internet. The Vocal Minority trope exists for a reason. I understand that, and I understand that the majority of feminists and social justice advocates and members of fandoms and even members of this very site are honest, decent, law-abiding citizens who do not need, nor deserve, to be tainted and painted in this light.

We have to appreciate and understand that there is no single sociopolitical philosophy or fandom or website or organization or race or gender or religion that is to blame for the actions of a few idiots.

The majority is not to blame for the actions of the foolish few who are either oblivious or irresponsible enough to think that they can get away with such behavior.


But followers, the reason I’m posting this missive is because, if you listen to some of the people on this and other websites, me and my esteemed comrades are somehow the bad guys.

“Helios is a rape apologist.”

takashi0 and slagarthefox are neckbeards.”

tenaflyviper, vikinglumberjack and some of our female comrades are some of the most derogatory names that women can be called.”


All because we have the temerity, the unmitigated gall, to point out that the arguments that they repeat from folks like That One User are completely and totally wrong.

That arguments like “bronies are pedophiles” or that “men are taught to rape” or that even statistics like the “wage gap” and “1 in 5 women are raped” are based on misconceptions at best, or are outright fabrications at worse.

And if those arguments and statistics are wrong, and yet they continue to be preached as the honest to God truth of the matter, what kind of effect do you think that’s going to have on society as a whole?

How can you look at people who are looking for any kind of justification for their own hatreds and bigotries and prejudices, and think that such blatant misinformation is not going to have an effect on them?

Or what about those who are already being ridiculed? Kids like Michael Morones or Grayson Bruce, kids who were bullied by those very same individuals, and resulted in the former trying to take his own life. This has most likely resulted in Michael Morones being permanently brain damaged at the age of 11 years old.

Do you really think that the attitudes and vitriol that was being spread and preached by people like That One User had nothing to do with what happened to them?


Now I am no expert on gender studies by any means. I am not an aficionado when it comes to things like gender roles.

But I am a man who believes in fairness and equality for everyone.

And I’m not only fearful of the kind of impact that this vitriol can have on our society, but I’m ashamed and disgusted by it.

And it especially enrages me that these few have tainted so many.

And because I believe in fairness, and I believe in fighting for those who cannot fight for themselves, I feel obligated to speak up on it. And so do our esteemed comrades.


Yet we got a whole bunch of people out there that get offended when we talk about this stuff. They don’t hear that we’re trying to emphasize that this behavior is wrong. They don’t hear that it’s based on arguments and beliefs that are false. And they don’t hear us when we say that the actions of the few are tainting the good deeds of so many who are not ignorant and stupid and oblivious to all this stuff, and know how to act responsibly.

They don’t hear any of that.

I remember when we blasted folks in the DWM camp for threatening people that were fans of APM or who just disagreed with That One User. By the way these threats included trying to get the husband of vikinglumberjack DEPORTED. We’re seeing the same thing now, with people who are against Gamergate sending threats to people who DO support Gamergate.

These people are like “What’s wrong with that? They were in the wrong to begin with! They probably sent threats as well, I heard about it on tumblr so it must be true! We’re not actually trying to harm them. We’re just trying to scare them so they stop oppressing women and minorities with their privilege and patriarchy!”

It’s the same justification we see here on tumblr from people that advocate shoplifting. They say “What’s wrong with shoplifting? The capitalist system has cheated us! There’s no way we can afford basic essentials! We need to do this to survive!”

The commonality here is that in both cases, these people are ignoring the fact that what they are doing is still illegal. It violates state and federal laws. And as a result, it can compromise your livelihood, just like That One User who, from my understanding, did face legal repercussions for what they tried to do.

But far be it from Helios to bring that up, right?


Listen, folks. Laws exist for a reason. They’re there to be followed. You break them, there is a price that you pay.

There are plenty of families who are in courtrooms right now that are crying over the transgressions of their loved ones who end up going to jail. Does that get them out of jail?

I ask this to all you sjw’s out there. Do you think that playing the “feels” card would get you out of jail?

Do you think that your tears, your sorrow, your misery would convince a judge to let you off the hook?

Would it give you any solace at all to cry, and ask, and beg the courts for mercy?

Do you really think that would work for you?

And if you don’t think it would work in the court of law, why would you think it would work in the court of public opinion? Which is even more fickle and arbitrary, I might add.

And when you behave in a foolish manner, and you do it in under the guise of “feminism” or “social justice” do you really think that your actions are not going to reflect negatively on your peers?


Over the course of almost one year, the people and groups I listed above said and did some of the most ridiculous stuff that I’ve ever seen. And each and every one of them were called out on it.


And yet…


tenaflyviper , takashi0, slagarthefox, hugobertington, vikinglumberjack, poniesforparents, equestria-faily, and countless others were attacked. Hell even I, Helios, on occasion, was attacked.


All because we’re pointing out how the arguments and in some cases the general behavior of those listed was wrong. Because we were pointing out how the actions of the few taint the many. And even though the actions of the few shouldn’t taint the many, the fact is that they will, so we have to be sure to call these people out when they do it, so that it doesn’t taint the majority.

We were not trying to attack any particular fandom or website or philosophy as a whole, we were just trying to call out the people that were acting like idiots.


And WE’RE the villains?


That’s some of the most ridiculous stuff I’ve ever seen, or heard.


I don’t happen to believe that you get to act in a foolish or even lawless fashion, and you shouldn’t pay a price. I don’t happen to believe that punishment and vitriol should only be designated for people of a particular gender, race, or sexual orientation.

This is about fairness. This is about what’s right. This is about what’s righteous.

There are some things that the listed individuals and groups have done that cannot be justified.

And now I’m going to be perhaps as open and honest as I’ve ever been on this blog.


I wish that none of them had ever done anything wrong.


I wish that Pinkiepony had never tried to start a crusade over a comic she had little understanding of and, in the end, was far tamer than what she herself had drawn.

I wish JesuOtaku had never made those caustic and scathing comments to those fans, including her own.

I wish Dragondicks had never tried to twist the message of Lauren Faust’s creations before trying to profit off of them.

I wish Ted Anderson had never endorsed Dragondicks’ message, or put her OC in a comic.

I wish Anita Sarkeesian had never written the flimsiest masters thesis in history, or that she and Johnathan McIntosh had at least done some actual research for their videos.

I wish Zoe Quinn had never slept with those journalists, and that she and Brianna Wu had actually made games that were decent.

I wish DWM never happened, that those people never got up in arms over a comic that was properly labeled and never showed anything explicit.

I wish the brony hate dumb hadn’t done things like make up stories about sexual harassment and child abduction at various conventions.

I wish the brony fan dumb had never done the many things that gave bronies a bad name to begin with.

I wish the SJW’s never got offended over every single thing on the planet.

I wish anti-Gamergate wasn’t just a reactionary response to Gamergate and was actually interested in discussing and debating the role of women in games, as well as the corruption and influence of “gaming journalism.”

I wish Cracked never posted those articles that may as well have come straight from tumblr.

I wish the SU fan dumb never freaked out over the possibility of men watching their show to the point that the show’s creators told them to knock it off.

I wish the tumblr feminist had never twisted the definition of feminism into a grotesque parody.

I wish that none of those people and groups had done any of the things that got them on my radar.


But the truth of the matter is that they did something. And the things they did, in my opinion, were wrong. And when someone does something foolish, then we, as users of the internet, have every right to call them out on it.


Also keep this in mind.

People make mistakes all the time. But rarely is the behavior that we saw from those listed, a mistake. It’s usually an intentional act.

And it’s in defiance of what’s decent.

What’s honest.

What’s right.

And when people don’t know how to act, no matter what your race, gender, orientation, religion, or cultural background is, then they’ve got to be called out on it.


A perfect example is the Steven Universe fandom. There is some disgraceful stuff going on there. And I believe that, in no way, does it represent the fandom or show as a whole. But it’s happening now.

And take it from me, the way you stomp that out, is by making sure that the people acting in a foolish manner are called out on it.

That’s what happened to the Brony fandom this past year or so. That’s when we saw that the vitriol being directed at us was being justified by the actions of the foolish few, and we said “enough is enough.”

And not only did we make sure to take steps to improve our general image overall, but we made sure that those who were acting foolish were called out.


That’s how we cleaned up our image.

That’s how we contained drama to the occasional fan wank.

That’s how we got back to enjoying the show.

That’s how we got back to having fun.

That’s how we created an environment that people don’t mind their kids being a part of.

It’s then that your fandom/website/movement should be celebrated, as well as all the good it does. It’s then that we all get to enjoy the wonderful creative environment that is the internet, the way it was meant to be enjoyed.


I would love to go to my MLP blog, and talk about Season 5. I’m dying to talk about how exited I am for the premiere, as well as all the things I’m looking forward to this season.

I’d love to go to my regular blog and talk about how in just 3 weeks I will be graduating with a degree from the University of Michigan.

I can’t wait to talk about Michigan’s football team, and how excited for them that I am, and not just because Jim Harbaugh is now the coach.

I’d love to talk about the Half Life 2: Update mod, which really just updates the lighting of the game, but it still adds a nice level of polish to one of the greatest games of all time.

I’d love to talk about how in just a few months, a spacecraft that was launched nearly 10 years ago will fly past Pluto for the first time.

I’d love to talk about all of this stuff, I want to talk about it right here right now.


But do I want to do so at the expense of ignoring what is transpiring right before our very eyes?


Now before I wrap this up, let me make this clear.

In no way do I mean to imply that this is just a problem that is central to a particular gender, or race, or religion, or even fandom. Because this is not just a “feminist” thing, or a “brony” thing, or a “gamer” thing, or even a “man” thing.

Because we know it’s not. This is a societal thing.

The difference is, in no other aspect of society is the Vocal Minority more prevalent than the internet.

And when the most visible amongst us engage in the kind of behavior that jeopardizes their image, and in some cases their livelihood..

…well, I think we see that we live in a society that, even for no other reason than a cautionary measure, will ultimately look with a raised eyebrow and wonder “who else is capable of such things.”

And when they can attach faces with a certain pigmentation, or gender, or some arbitrary label like “fandom”, and declare that “there must be a pattern here”, it can ultimately be to that group’s detriment.

And on the internet, and especially on this website, if it’s to one of our detriments, then it’s to all of our detriments.


And this needs to be said, so damn it I’m saying it.


All of us need to be on our P’s and Q’s.

All of us have to strive to do the right thing.

All of us have to be willing to call it as we see it, when it comes to what we’re really seeing.

And if it happens to be in our own house? So be it.

Because when your house is dirty, who the hell are you to tell someone else to clean their house up?

That’s just the way the world works.


Deal with it.

anonymous asked:

I am curious about the political environment of always human. They seem to be living in a near utopian society.

Something like The Nordic Model.

Note that this is a post-scarcity society, thanks to machines, and it is also a society in which many jobs have completely vanished, also thanks to machines.

Most jobs are available in science/technology/medicine and performance/entertainment/ design/creative fields, as these jobs require human ingenuity. There are also jobs in tourism/hospitality/etc. as people like going to restaurants and eating meals that an actual human prepared, or having an actual human tour guide show them around a new and exciting place.

So with the more limited availability of jobs and the increased availability of resources thanks to machines that can do jobs with minimal effort, it’s unrealistic to expect everyone to be able to get a job. So the government will give everyone a living wage to cover the basic costs of living.

But this is still a capitalist society and if you want to buy cool things (like wings! or boobs that a doctor hasn’t said are medically required! or a holiday to Mars!) you will need to make money somehow. This could mean getting a job, or it could mean studying at university and getting additional funds from the government, or it could mean convincing the government that you’re doing something culturally important or creative and getting funds from them to continue doing this (many naturalist communes get funding from the government because they’re seen as culturally important.)

A few more notes on the political environment - you can see, from background shots, that apart from a few parks and a couple of university buildings, there’s very little greenery in Kaku City. Also Sunati’s mum thinks that a person shouldn’t change their skin colour, so presumably she still thinks that racism is a thing. And it’s considered reasonable that a corporation (rather than a government) might buy a station on a moon around Saturn and build a private colony there.

Make of these things what you will :)

Anonymous said to alwayshumancomic:How rare is Egan’s syndrome?

Maybe 1 in 10,000 people? Maybe rarer?

Rare enough that Sunati didn’t know it was a thing before the start of the comic.

Anonymous said to alwayshumancomic:How do schools realize if a student is actually themself if they show up one day looking very differently?

Lenses and fingerprints. Everyone wears a Lens at school (and most of the time) as both virtual reality and augmented reality would be used in classes. If a person changes their appearance, their Lens will still identify them (like an ID card) and can display an AR notification so nobody is confused.

Also, you may have noticed that next to most doors in the comic there are small rectangles - these are fingerprint scanners. People scan their fingerprints to do everything from turning on lights to paying for a meal, and this serves as the secondary form of ID (because, of course, people can not wear their Lens or wear someone else’s Lens, etc.)

Of course, fingerprints are also fallible because of mods, but this is very very illegal and not something schools are worried about. If police needed to identify someone who might have changed their fingerprints, they’ll do a blood test and look for specific DNA markers in parts of the code that have so far proven to be impossible to change without killing the subject. (Probably. I am not a biologist and may be lying to you!)

And more asks under the cut because whoops this is getting long.

Keep reading

diethion-deactivated20170111  asked:

Andrew Ryan = Walt Disney, minus the death/child manipulation (more or less amirite)

OK LEMME JUST TELL YOU A LITTLE SOMETHING ABOUT HOW ANDREW RYAN IS WALT DISNEY AND TRUST ME WHEN I SAY THAT THIS IS THE SHORT UNEDITED VERSION WITH NO CITED SOURCES I’M PRETTY SURE I COULD WRITE A WHOLE BOOK ABOUT THIS

Many have compared the character Andrew Ryan to Ayn Rand— an obvious choice given that Bioshock was written essentially to parody the the work of Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged. This isn’t the only similarity drawn throughout the game however. Ken Levine wanted to take the platform of gaming and use it to make points beyond simple questions of right or wrong. With this in mind, it is easy to notice that there are decided similarities between the main antagonist of Bioshock— Andrew Ryan— and one of the most celebrated men in American History— Walt Disney. Not only is this not an accident, but Levine’s choice in making the comparison shows us that history is truly only what we make of it.

Levine starts at the beginning of both their lives, showing that both Ryan and Disney rose from practically nothing. The mentality that accompanies this rise to power is one of a very high self worth— and a very low respect for those who they see as clinging to the tails of those who have risen higher. This is by no means to say that they believe that the bourgeois in any way deserve what they have— only that a self made man is the best that a person can be. Ryan arrived in America as a poor Russian immigrant, Disney was unable to attend school until he was eight years old. In spite of these shortcomings, these men both worked their way up to becoming the business moguls that they (within their own universes) are famous for.

Along with this pride for self-achievement, and the honour that they saw accompanying it, goes a certain distaste for those who they saw as looters or parasites. Though Walt was not one to use that word, he was very opposed to communism. He not only founded an anti-communist society, but he actually named names during the red scare. Ryan’s dislike for communism ended up costing him some of his fiercely protected morals. His need to eradicate the “parasite,” as Levine termed it, led to his decision to take away certain freedoms from The People. Although even he condemned his actions, he saw it as the necessary thing to do, to keep the people safe from those who would cheat to get ahead.

Another similarity, of course, is the interest they both had in furthering industry. Both Disney and Ryan invested a great deal of time and money into things not necessarily relating to their field. Disney has been known for funding special scientific projects, and Ryan had his Best and Brightest club in order to keep tabs on the scientific community. Disney may not have built a city under the ocean in order to create his personal heaven, but there are a rather well known series of parks throughout the world that serve as shrines to his creations and ideals. Things like Epcot and the Carousel of Progress are great examples of the way that Disney’s interest and involvement in social and scientific progress still live on today.

It would be easy to go on listing similarities between the two, but there’s more to Ken Levine’s choice to make these similarities than that. In Bioshock, he takes a person that we, as Americans, consider one of the greatest American Innovators of all time…. and essentially transforms him into a villain without changing anything but the point of view. Just because our Rapture hasn’t fallen, because Disneyland is still a fully working model, doesn’t mean that the mindset of this man that we worship so thoroughly wasn’t just the same as the man we might call a villain. Rather, they were both of them idealistic. Ryan’s ideals were such that he could be considered either wicked… or very naive. Disney may have housed the same ideas, but he never used them to secede from the world in quite the way that Ryan did. In different circumstances, they would have been exactly the same.

So why is it that we see one person as a hero and one as a villain? Not only did Levine create a character identical to a man that is still practically worshipped by the greater part of the world, he made that character the villain. Perhaps the answer lies purely in time. Disney didn’t live to see his creations fail. His company flourished— still flourishes, so that sense of bitterness which is all we are allowed in the glimpse of Andrew Ryan in Bioshock never had to take seed within his heart.

In the end, what separates the two is how their stories are told. Disney is still very much a saint, while Ryan is condemned, when, in fact, they two shared the same capitalist, anti-altruistic ideals. Were Walt Disney in Ryan’s shoes, it’s very likely that he would have handed his son the golf club and given him the same orders. A world in which either of them lacked control was no world in which they would want to live. In this regard, Ken Levine has done a masterful job of storytelling. He took a hero and made him a villain, purely by changing the environment in which he was placed. Though at heart they two might be the same, Levine’s audience is forced to see this Randian idealism as evil, however much they might inadvertently worship it outside of the game. When it comes down to it, the only difference between the two men is the way in which their stories are told.

Before I end this post, I’d like to leave you with a few visual similarities between the two men.

(and unfortunately, I can’t find the video online but.. the last time I was at Disney, I saw a video where Walt was calling his wife to let her know that not only would he not be home for dinner tonight, he probably wouldn’t see her until the world’s fair. And all I could think of was this )

Interview: Jack Fallows

Today we’re joined by Jack Fallows.  Jack is an amazingly talented visual artist.  They were inspired by comics and it shows in their technique.  Their pictures are quite unique and interesting to study.  My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

When I was a kid I used to draw really detailed pictures of aliens fighting monsters with super hi-tech weapons and equipment. There were blood and guts everywhere, and somewhere in the background I’d draw the thing that was really bothering me – someone or something at school, usually. Or I’d draw a comic about a kid who had the ability to turn invisible, or to control things with their mind. My art has pretty much just been that mixture of catharsis, revenge fantasy and faint aspiration towards something better over and over again in all kinds of different iterations. But I think I’ve made progress in so far as what I want to say feels like it has a little more foreground in the things I make now, and I’m not quite as petty, and the aspirations aren’t always unrealistic and have helped open some really useful real-world conversations with people. It’s a really amazing coping mechanism that I think everyone has and should look into. The end results are often besides the point after a while.

What inspires you?

Meeting other artists who are interested in art as a fundamentally human thing. Artists who know art is most needed in exactly the places it’s often made unavailable. Artists who have enough perspective to see that their development in their field and the voice they have been able to shape with autonomy and passion is, in fact, a massive privilege. Artists who know that to be professional still just means to serve a slightly different function in a capitalist society ruled by the same rich, white people that rule everything. Artists who are inviting conversation and community and inclusion in their work, not making rehashed statement pieces, or working towards commercial success or pontificating blindly from a tower too high for anyone to hear aside from those who share their platform. Artists who see no point in a circle of people sitting in a room together, passing a message from ear to ear. I’ve had the incredible fortune of meeting many such artists, especially in the last couple of years. They’ve taught me a lot and I’m really grateful to them for being such total babes. These people and other friends inspire me to be a better person, and making more art is how I go about it. 

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

Reading the Beano and Spiderman got me into comics from the point I could read onwards, and I always made comics alongside reading them. That’s one habit I’ve never broken, I’m proud to say. Listening to REM as a kid made me want to sing and write music. I had my first hit as a 10 year old when I sang and did a dance routine to a song I wrote about myself in the school yard for a few days until everyone got bored of watching. That sense of rejection is probably what spearheaded my increasingly narcissistic musical career. And writing has always been part-and-parcel of making up stories, which is how I would do it at school when I couldn’t draw comics. ‘Have you always wanted to be an artist?’ is an interestingly complicated question. I’m not sure exactly what ‘being an artist’ really means but when it comes to making art, the only sense of longing I tend to have is one to cure myself in some way. Entertaining the idea of being a full-time freelancer is always on and off and I’ve done a little of that too. But that’s a money and time issue and has nothing to do with the art itself (aside from the disconnect between what you want to say and what you’re being paid to say). I can say I’ve always had an intense relationship with art, for whatever that’s worth. Even when I haven’t been as active myself, I’ll still be questing for it. And even when I’m bored with everything, my own work and others’, it’s such an intense boredom I end up having an existential crisis and questioning the meaning of my life. The need for art may have been left undiscovered if not for my privilege (my Dad having enough to buy me new comics on the weekend, my parents and school generally being supportive enough of my art to help me improve etc.) and I’d probably have fallen through the cracks in the same way many members of the community I grew up in did, had I not been so privileged. Art literally saved my life and continues to, regularly. That’s what keeps me interested in my field. 

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

I draw myself a lot but that’s a fairly easy one to spot. Mostly I try to be as upfront as possible these days but I did do this whole comic series called The Big Bang (nothing to do with that piece of shit show that laugh-tracked an acephobic joke (and before it reached us in the UK)) which was very much about hiding things in the background and being subtle enough with the art so that people would be forced to go back and double check stuff. But it all felt really phony after a while. I put out three issues and had the script ready to go for the fourth and final part before I threw the towel in on it. I like to draw in symbols used by political movements I support as background detail in my comics sometimes but it’s not typically integral to the story, just aesthetic afterthought.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

You’re in a unique position to start challenging the bullshit you’ll be taught about art in school while it’s happening to you, and to grow stronger in its adversity; seize that. Make exactly what you need to make in order to connect with those you feel estranged from, or those you want to call in or those you want to support, celebrate or protect. Ignore everything and everyone else forever. Your art is your own, it deserves to take up space like everyone else’s. Grades are meaningless, many people’s perspectives will also be meaningless to you. 

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m panromantic demisexual. My attraction to others rarely has anything to do with gender but certain learned, gendered behaviours do feel threatening and uncomfortable for me. The attraction is always firstly an interest in a person, minus the hypothetical prospect of sex, and most often that’s where it remains. Where I have felt sexually attracted to others, it has been an extension of an already existing intimacy with them. One night stands or we-ought-to-because-it’s-the-third-date type sexual narratives have left me feeling very alienated and empty in the past. Beginning to throw away the performative elements of my life has given me perspective and helped me listen to what I really want, which is different for everyone. Should note here that I totally support (and include in ‘everyone’) people having as many one-night stands or following as many socio-sexual codes as they like, so long as it’s consensual. Having labels like these just helps me feel grounded when being true to myself becomes an isolating experience. It’s a nice reminder you have a community scattered around out there.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

I’ve mostly just encountered flippancy or the kind of no-questions-asked acceptance that someone who wants to appear accepting of everyone always gives, while simultaneously waving away your problems like you won’t find any with them. Which hardly sound like problems at all but when you’re trying to open a dialogue with people, it can feel really frustrating. The best reactions I’ve had are the ones where people have asked really blunt and problematically phrased questions because at least there’s somewhere to go from there. That’s a person who has put themself in a position to learn and grow, whatever their intention might have been when they started reacting to my work. I also entirely acknowledge my failing as an artist to stimulate these questions (probably 90% of the problem). But there are always going to be people too far gone down the rabbit hole of heteronormative propaganda to have meaningful conversations with. We just have to hope some other learning opportunity forces its way into their life and steers them back towards the light. When you’re that buried and polarised, you’re not ready to digest anything new, you’re just ready to fight. I’m learning to recognise that in the different audiences to which I’ve brought my work, and separating out the places where there’s fuel for my practice and the ones that would just extinguish the flame a little bit.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

Definitely the whole trauma / haven’t-met-the-right-person-yet narrative; it’s like a disease with certain people that they always know your life better than you. I’m not saying I don’t give people cause to think I’m delusional but when it comes to matters of the self, there is literally no one in a position to decide what you are except you. I even put out a zine on abuse, asexuality and agender identity so I could draw the links between them and show they are not in a cause-and-effect reactionary relationship to one another. Any of the hate and disrespect that faces queer folks is so frustratingly transparent. When someone says anything that could fall under the category of ‘coming out’, we need to see it as the act of compassion that it is. People just can’t see you’re reaching out to them, trying to share an intimate part of yourself with them, a part you want to nurse into full health while the world batters it to bits. Whether it’s in the form of art or music or a conversation over coffee. If you just listen and ask questions, you’ll discover new and amazing dimensions to the people around you; there’s no cause to be scared or angry about that, no matter how much you’ve been socialised to think so. Honest! 

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

Remember labels are just new language. While we grow up as a species and learn new things about each other and ourselves, we feel the need to create words so we can communicate more effectively and build communities and systems of support to help us with things that make us feel alone. Whether or not you’ve found a word you think describes you is kind of irrelevant – there will be people out there who feel like you, and you’ll find them in the most diverse set of places. A word will pop up eventually, but meanwhile the world gets to know you in 3D and that’s really cool. It would be great if the others who share your orientation were all just like you, and into all the same things you are, and hung out where you like to hang out, or worked where you work or went to your school. But more likely they’ll just be people who you have as much chance of getting along with as a random stranger you brush past when you step off the train. You don’t have to be around other ace-spectrum folks to feel safe and loved, feeling like that starts with loving and accepting the things that have made you feel different up until now, and celebrating them. If you find a word you can add to a bio or use as a conversation starter along the way then that’s obviously great but it’s far from essential. You’re great, you’re irreplaceable and the way you appreciate the people around you is just as valuable as anyone else’s. If you meet someone who disagrees they just aren’t paying attention.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

I have a Tumblr: http://jackfallows.tumblr.com, which has links to my art, music and ace awareness stuff. My friend CJ puts out my print work at Black Lodge Press http://blacklodgepress.etsy.com – or if you’re into swaps, send me an e-mail: jack@jackfallows.com or come find me at a comic con or a show in the UK and we’ll hang out! <3

Thank you so much, Jack, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.