well, posting my silly guns from fallout definitely attracted the pro-gun, pro-capitalist side of the fandom and I wanna make clear that my #discourse is that Fallout is chicken shit about its own themes of capitalism bringing about intolerable living conditions before the Great War, the deaths, exploitation, and suffering of thousands of people. Hell, the unit of currency and thus of unbacked unregulated capitalism in the future after the War is literally called the ‘cap.’ And all the same stuff still exists– slavery, exploitation, fraud, etc. Just unveiled, without a guise of nationalism, the American Dream, or ‘better living.’

The things that would benefit real people and seed a better society aren’t the veneers of ‘civilization’ but its real foundation: public works, social support for those who cannot survive otherwise, education, potable water, sound housing, freely available and safe food, fair compensation for essential labor that serves the laborers. These things aren’t best served by a ‘free market.’ And one can argue that with total lack of law or regulation, the wasteland’s market is infinitely free.

It’s kind of a disservice that your player character, if you play them as ‘nice’ is framed as some kind of fairy godparent to the wasteland that brings people these things because they are charitable. In real life, charity from the wealthy is a terrible system for a society to depend on. Even if some amount of money or support is donated to charity, much much more is extracted from the very same population and kept as profit and capital and never returned. It’s disingenuous to revile “government hand-outs” when the welfare of the people is left up to basically whatever the wealthy might feel moved to ‘hand out’ themselves, or whatever a corporation strikes as an advantageous move.

And on the subject of guns, it’s pretty clear in game that because the mechanics of this game universe demand everyone be armed (as it’s. a game about correctly eliminating AI opponents and accumulating the value of what’s in their pockets. You can’t avoid that.) it’s not nessesarily a good thing. The people with the biggest guns now dominate, rather than everyone merely being ‘polite.’ There is no tyranny to theoretically rise up against anymore, the literal biggest guns took out all authority. Now people seek to reinstall themselves as the new largest authority, and arms are their method of doing that every time.

So that’s where I stand. Sorry if this poisons your callout post guns but I’m a lefty. My nonexistent video game sniper rifle is a lefty sniper rifle. I personally wouldn’t want to obtain anything like that in my real-world context, and I think it’s unnecessary for practically anyone in our society– including the government and police. Fallout’s cowardly about the value of life, or the significance of death, and trivializes your actions that impact both but that doesn’t mean I do.

(and from the american left: don’t give me that ‘but how can we rise up without guns!’ stuff on this post. That’s a discussion for another day. Unless you’re with the Black Panthers, the fantasy of rising up via firearms in the context of the USA is mainly a white person fantasy regardless if its from the right vs the ‘guvmint’ or from the left vs. ‘the boss.’ At the end when the dust clears every theoretical white socialist person to rise up would still be a majority white person in a position of situational power with a gun. Building a better, post-major-capitalism society is probably going to be way more complex than anybody’s video game fantasies where they are the hero shooting down the villains.)


(note: I’m not gonna talk about Trump mocking Serge Kovaleski primarily b/c Kovaleski does not ID as disabled and does not want to be used as a political talking point. Which is fair.  yes, it was awful. no, you don’t get brownie points for agreeing with me that it was awful. Disabled people have evolved to have thick skin, and a politician mocking us is not new or unsurprising. this list will deal with policy and specific issues facing the broader disability, autistic, d/Deaf//HoH, and neurodivergent communities.)

(other note: I generally use adjective-first language but I probably also used person-first language in here somewhere. I personally prefer to use the former for myself but I respect that other people in this community use different language.)

-the federal site for IDEA has been taken down

-all mentions of disability rights have been deleted from the website

-betsy devos had no idea what the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act was when asked and stated that standards for accommodations in education should be left up to the state (this is a TERRIBLE idea)

-if Obamacare is repealed, we have the most to lose. Most of us will not be able to afford medical expertise or treatment to maintain a basic quality of life. Some of us will die.

-he called one of his books Crippled America. Unironically. Ugh. 

-the january 2017 unemployment rate for nondisabled civilians was 4.9. For disabled civilians, it was 11.0. These numbers do not reflect the number of disabled individuals who work inadequate part time jobs, who are institutionalized, or have given up looking for work.

-the US still has not signed the UN documents about the rights of People with Disabilities. 

-Justices like Justice Kennedy have historically been swing votes on cases involving disabilities. Justices like Scalia have not. Potential Supreme Court Justice Gorsuch has a very ugly disability rights record, which includes defending a college that fired a professor undergoing chemo when she requested to give her lectures over skype (there was a flu going around on campus and being there would put the staff member in danger due to her suppressed immune system)

-By the time he was elected, Donald Trump had already dealt with at least eight lawsuits concerning lack of basic accessibility (ramps, braille) on his properties

-the Supreme Court case legalizing the sterilization of potentially disabled people without their consent (Buck v. Bell) has never been overturned and has been cited as a legal precedence in a lower court as recently as 2001.

-the Judge Rotenburg Center is still using painful electric shocks on disabled students as punishment, despite the FDA advising them to stop more than two years ago.

-similarly, many disabled people are not  paid federal minimum wage b/c section 14c of the “Fair Labor Standards Act” is still on the books and so hundreds of thousands of disabled peoples’ wages are “proportional” to their productivity (compared to an abled worker). Goodwill is one of the most famous companies that exploits this loophole.

-the already gutted SSDI program is even more at risk-Trump has spoken about emulating the British reforms for their disability program. Off the top of my head, I can think of nine or ten different people who died as a result of the recent “fit to work” assessments and bedroom requirements in the UK.

-disabled people depend on the Department of Justice’s civil rights division to enforce the ADA and protect us from blatant discrimination. Trump has already proven that he does not care about the funding or effectiveness of the department, and is willing to destabilize it to forward his political goals. 

-Donald Trump is anti-vax and is complacent to that movement’s violent and intolerable rhetoric surrounding autistic and other neurodivergent individuals

-Sessions called disabled children protected by federal laws (like IDEA) “the single most irritating problem for teachers throughout America today”. In this same statement, he stated that he did not “remember hearing of gun shootings prior to 1975 when Congress began telling ten percent of our students [they] are not responsible” (the IDEA was passed in 1975, improving the way disabled children were treated at public schools)

-the new administration’s refusal to address fatal police brutality is also an issue of disability rights, given that around half of victims shot by police officers are disabled or neurodivergent. (like eric garner, who had asthma) 

In case this list didn’t clue you in: the disabled community is scared. We don’t know what to expect from the next four years, we still haven’t come close to equality, and we are usually left to fight our battles alone. That’s why I’m asking whoever reads this to stand with the disability community against ableism and against policies that will kill us. People have done a great job in the past few weeks of expressing solidarity with muslims, immigrants, refugees, latinx people, LGBT people, and black people. And, honestly, that’s great. Thank you and please keep doing it. But also be aware that disabled people are one of the most vulnerable demographics right now, and be aware that we’re also one of the most ignored. We are made invisible by the media and by society too easily. Please, you have to see us and you have to stand with us. 

Looking back on history, it’s impossible not to notice that people with disabilities don’t fare well in authoritarian regimes. Please help us make this time different.

I had two white girls get in my face, demanding to know if I was wearing clothing from a sweatshop.

I was at a circus protest. A circus protest. It wasn’t even a slaughterhouse or anti-meat protest. Nothing to do with labor or products. It was a protest against putting animals in cages and chains, and they still attempted to use oppressed workers as a defense mechanism.

Not to mention the girls were probably wearing sweatshop-made clothing themselves, unless they were privileged enough to be able to afford fair trade labor clothing (not all of us can). I mean, they certainly had enough money to watch wild animals be paraded out like clowns for their entertainment, so I hope they used that money to support fair labor products at the very least since they seemed so passionate about it.

My point is, it doesn’t matter what you protest, or how you protest. People will use any excuse to continue to exploit animals, and they will happily use the plight of marginalized human beings to do so.

anonymous asked:

DO you agree with William MacAskill's argument that effective altruists should avoid buying Fair Trade goods?

As far as I’m familiar with it, yes. 

The argument I’m familiar with is basically: getting certified as Fair Trade is really expensive and requires ability to navigate administrative procedures in the United States and United Kingdom, which means that your company can only do it with an English-speaking legal team; the very poorest places in the world can therefore pretty much never get certified Fair Trade, whatever their labor practices, so in practice buying Fair Trade is buying from somewhere wealthy enough to comply and demonstrate compliance instead of from the poorest people in the world. 

And it costs a lot more; if you want to use the difference in money between the cost of cheap clothes and food and the cost of Fair Trade clothes and food to fight poverty and exploitation, you’d do better buying the cheap clothes and food and sending the difference to poor people. 

That said, I worry a little bit that some people will be like ‘I don’t buy Fair Trade goods because it’s not effective altruism’ and, you know, not actually do other things instead. Instead of ‘effective altruists should avoid buying Fair Trade goods’ I would phrase it as ‘effective altruists should focus their time and money on ways of improving the world that work better than buying Fair Trade goods’, and that I agree with without reservation.

Much like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, the falsely cloaked Working Families Flexibility Act (H.R. 1180/S. 801) would hurt, not help, working women and families. The Working Families Flexibility Act, a true misnomer if ever there was one, would in reality ensure that workers have less time, less flexibility and less money.

This anti-family proposal would force workers to spend more time away from their families in exchange for possibly getting to spend time later with their families. Under this proposal, the employer, not the employee, would determine when earned comp time can be used.

In other words, a low-wage working mother could be forced to work 50 hours one week during Spring Break when her children are off from school, and in exchange for that overtime work get 10 hours off another week when they are back in school. This may be flexibility for the employer, but it would cost the employee extra money for child care, less money in overtime earnings and less time with her family.

Low-wage workers frequently have to rely on their overtime earnings to make ends meet.

Employers currently steal billions of dollars annually from workers in unpaid overtime compensation. This proposal would make this problem even worse, because it would become easier for employers to avoid overtime compensation obligations. Although the bill provides the right to sue in court, low-wage workers lack the resources necessary to engage in costly and protracted litigation, and rightly fear retaliation or losing their jobs.

The bill would also allow employers to “cash out” an employee’s comp time over 80 hours or discontinue the comp time program altogether. This means an employee’s carefully crafted plan to bank time for a child’s birth or surgery could be thwarted by an employer’s decision to cash out the employee’s time or end the program. Under this proposal, there are also no protections for employees to receive the value of their earned comp time if their employer goes out of business or goes bankrupt.

Finally, workers already have some flexibility because of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Currently, employers can and some do allow employees to rearrange their schedules to fit in a school recital or doctor’s appointment. Employees who work a lot of overtime and don’t need more money can already be allowed to take unpaid days off.

I keep seeing the sentiment that “I prefer open hatred to liberal ‘allies’ who want their feelings taken care of.”

I’m just going to speak for myself here, in the context of the problems I deal with.

I vastly prefer liberal “allies” who want their feelings taken care of to open hatred.

On the one hand: people who want me to do some free emotional labor for them sometimes.

On the other hand: people who literally want me exiled, rounded up and stuck in a death camp, forcibly sterilized, or just plain murdered.

I can do the emotional labor. It’s not fair, but emotional labor is rarely fair and, frankly, I’m pretty okay at doing uncompensated emotional labor. It’s a skill. I have that skill.

I can’t do the other thing. Dying is not a skill.


Two days ago, via the truly horrible facebook “memory” function, I was reminded of a client who stiffed me $250 for work I had done for him. This was four years ago. In those days, we were very broke, chronically underemployed, and I had lost one of my better paying gigs to an unpaid intern. We were teetering on the brink of disaster, and I was trying to make money by hustling with my art for the first time. 

I found a craigslist ad looking for someone to design a family crest. How exciting, I thought, a chance to design something that also interests me personally. I contacted the original poster, and over the course of several emails settled on a price, and I proceeded to work out a draft, get approval from the client, and execute the final design. I was stupid back then, and inexperienced, so I sent him a file of the final design with no watermark (albeit smaller than the 600dpi file he requested - I thought I was being savvy, that he’d surely pay me to get the full size file. Ha.) and awaited his response.

Days passed. No word. Ten days later I sent him an email, cautiously probing but optimistic that it was nothing more than a standard delay. Ten more days pass. At this point our bills are coming due, our groceries are running out and we had budgeted for that $250 to get us through to the next (meagre) paycheck. I send another email. Nothing.

Instead of having $250 to use for food and electricity, we had nothing. It was a horrible feeling, desperately searching at the last possible minute for ANY extra funds we could throw at the sisyphus-like hill that was our financial situation in those days. I’ll never forget the sting, the slow realization that I had been scammed for my hard work and would see nothing in return for my labor, and on top of that, we had to quickly figure out a way to keep the lights on because the $250 was meant for that.

In time, I moved on. I became smarter and learned how to ask for what I was worth and require security before embarking on new jobs for new clients. I met wonderful clients who really respected the value of an artist’s labor and paid me fairly for the work I did for them. I’m grateful for these clients, because they showed me that not everyone wants to exploit creative labor.

But I never forgot that client, never really let go of the anger, the helpless rage and desperation of needing, NEEDING SO BADLY to be paid for the work I did, and simply being dropped and given no answer whatsoever. 

I stayed silent, though, as so many wronged artists do. So often we do work for free, or for horribly reduced fees because the perception of the world is that simply because we love art, it is not “work.” When we are exploited, straight up ROBBED by people who decide our creative output is free for them to take, we diminish ourselves as artists, craftspeople, LABORERS. When I saw that post come up, all the feelings I had back in 2012 came back to me. I’m grateful that now $250 does not make or break me, but nevertheless I was moved to speak out because of the realization that four years’ worth of artists may have been screwed over by this guy and I won’t stand for it anymore.

Let me tell you something: ART IS LABOR. No matter how you parse it - creating a WORK of art TAKES WORK and anyone who believes you don’t deserve fair compensation for your labor is exploitative and should be exposed to the creative community as such. Sean Ironstag stole from me, and refuses to acknowledge this fact. I believe the record shows I completed my end of the agreement, and it falls to him to correct this.

Don’t let your work be undervalued, discounted, or stolen by people who don’t respect the work it takes to become a competent artist. Stand up for yourself, and for the artists around you who KNOW what the struggle is like. Please share this!


Organizations Call Out Ivanka Trump Brand Over Labor Scandal
The White House has said all questions should be directed to Trump's brand—which continues to remain silent.
By Aria Bendix

Following news that two labor activists went missing and another was arrested after investigating a Chinese company that produces Ivanka Trump shoes, numerous organizations have called for the president’s daughter to address the situation. “Ivanka’s brand should immediately cease its work with this supplier, and the Trump administration should reverse its current course and confront China on its human rights abuses,” Adrienne Watson, a spokeswoman for the Democratic National Committee, said in a Wednesday statement. “For years, Ivanka Trump has ignored public reports of awful labor conditions at a factory that makes her shoes. Now, she must decide whether she can ignore the Chinese government’s apparent attempt to silence an investigation into those worker abuses.”

Indeed, this isn’t the first time the Ivanka Trump brand has been embroiled in a labor scandal. In April, an inspection by the Fair Labor Association found that workers in a Chinese knitting factory that makes clothing for the brand were being underpaid, receiving just $62 weekly for up to 60 hours of work, or a little more than a dollar per hour. All together, the factory was found to be in violation of two dozen international labor standards.

Still reading the Metafilter emotional labor thread (every time I get to the end there are 200 new comments to load) and one thing that has become clear is just why the ‘handsome bearded Chis Evans lumberjack who built you a rustic-yet-airy cabin and sheared the wool for the sweater he knit you’ appeals so very much. 

The imaginary hyper-competent forest hermit/fireman/henley wearer who coincidentally looks exactly like Channing Tatum is a man who anticipates and meets your needs. He knows your feelings matter, because he knows his feelings matter. He appreciates the work you do in building your relationship with him, and returns it in kind, in addition to the work he does in chopping large quantities of firewood.

When we light our Mountain Lodge candles, we are envisioning men whose commitment to carrying a fair share of emotional labor equals (or even surpasses) their dedication to proper beard maintenance. These fictional Richard Armitages and Idris Elbas have work-roughened hands from their long day sweating over a hot bandsaw or angle grinder or whatever, yes, but the attractive-yet-functional furniture we imagine them building is mere synechdoche for the attractive-yet-functional relationships we imagine them capable of sustaining.

Should It Be Legal to Pay Disabled Workers Subminimum Wages?

Lawren Barber-Wood. December 9, 2016.

I. Section 14© and Who It Affects

In America, the current minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. Most states, though, have higher minimum wages, like Alaska, where the minimum wage is $9.75 an hour. Most American workers are paid whichever wage is higher where they live, but there are some exceptions; minors, waitstaff, and disabled workers can all legally be paid below minimum wage. Minors can only be paid below minimum wage for ninety days, though, and waitstaff can only be paid subminimum wages if they’re tipped. Even then, there are limitations on this; “if an employee’s tips plus cash wages do not add up to at least minimum wage… the employer is required to [pay enough to] make the employee whole” (Simpson).  In regards to disabled workers, on the other hand, there is no limit to how low they can be paid or for how long they can be paid these low wages. This is because of a seventy-five year old addition to the Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA, called Section 14©.

Keep reading

7 Tips on How to be Fashionably Responsible

Love fashion AND want to do all you can for the environment? This Wednesday, our stylish friend Myriam, Founder of Eco Fashion Week, talks about 7 things you can do to be more fashionably responsible. Take it away Myriam!

1. Ask yourself: “Do I really need it?”

Most of our purchases are impulsive. You will often surprise yourself by answering “no” to the question.

2. Be curious and be informed.

Ask the salesperson in store questions, read labels (where is it made? what is it made of?), follow eco fashion-focused blogs like Ecouterre, Eco-salon, or Tree Hugger.

3. Be proud of bringing your re-usable shopping bags, even if it is in a high-end store.

Does your t-shirt need to be wrapped in a paper with a ribbon, in a box, in a fancy bag with even more paper? There is totally a prestige factor to it, but what happens to all of this after? Re-use? Recycle? Garbage? Being “eco” is not only with your actions, but with your attitude as well.

4. Wear your clothes!

There is no wrong in wearing the same pair of pants or sweater twice or even three times in a week. Be creative and style those differently. Take a minute and look at your closet right now. How many things have you only worn once, or never? Once you are done going through your closet, DONATE!

5. Buy quality.

If you really must buy, make sure your clothes have long lifespans. The higher the quality, the longer the life. Basic and classic pieces should always be part of your wardrobe. Look for well-made clothes with high-end fabrics and materials, and timeless patterns. If you shop this way, you will wear your clothes over and over again without getting tired of them.

6. Take the leap and try second hand clothing.

If you buy around 10 clothing items per month, try to get at least 1 out of 10 of them used. You can find stylish used pieces from vintage and thrift stores. Better yet, exchange clothes with other fashionable friends (it’s free!), or have a fashion swap event. Stop being scared of wearing second hand clothing; there is nothing to fear. Start with accessories, like a purse or a belt, and see how you feel; you’ll start to notice how people compliment you for your fashionably responsible finds..  

7. Find your own “Eco Recipe”.

There are many ways of being fashionably responsible, and we do not have the same personal, human and financial resources. Find what fits you and commit to improve every year. Between second hand clothing, local manufacturing, organic or recycled material, fair labor, upcycling… you have many options. It’s simpler than you think, and guess what, it feels amazing to take action and be the change!

This guest post lovingly crafted for you by:
Myriam L.
Founder of Eco Fashion Week

(photos from Giphy 1/2/3/4/5/6/7)

Did you know organic and eco fashion labels live on Wantering? Take for example, Greg Lauren, Ralph Lauren’s nephew that creates stylish fashion pieces with military-motif from vintage materials. Check out his work now!

Even men who think you’re smart think you’re not quite as smart as them. Not quite as experienced as them. Haven’t really thought it out like they have. Haven’t applied logic like they have.

Men think women are refugees in the political/intellectual landscape. They think they hold all the power and we have to apply for recognition constantly. Get your opinions approved by a Man today.

Don’t let men forget existing as a woman is political in and of itself. Demand a fair compensation for your labor. The only man you owe anything to is the one you create.