Justin Trudeau approved the Kinder Morgan pipeline which will run from Canadian oil sands to the Pacific Ocean. The pipeline, which will put Tsleil Waututh First Nations tribal land at risk of oil spills and contamination, undermines every false promise made by Justin Trudeau to put the environment and the safety of FN people first. Trudeau is literally just a liar who has done nothing but break his most important promises to Canadians and further marginalize already marginalized people
Over the past four years, the Unist'ot'en clan of the Wet’suwet’en nation have literally built a strategy to keep three proposed oil and gas pipelines from crossing their land. Concerned about the environmental damage a leak could cause on land they’ve never given up, they’ve constructed a protection camp to block pipeline companies. As opposition to the development of Alberta’s tar sands and to fracking projects grows across Canada, with First Nations communities on the front lines, the Unist'ot'en camp is an example of resistance that everyone is watching.
Donald Trump is so spectacularly horrible that it’s hard to look away – especially now that he’s discovered bombs. But precisely because everyone’s staring gape-mouthed in his direction, other world leaders are able to get away with almost anything. Don’t believe me? Look one country north, at Justin Trudeau.
Look all you want, in fact – he sure is cute, the planet’s only sovereign leader who appears to have recently quit a boy band. And he’s mastered so beautifully the politics of inclusion: compassionate to immigrants, insistent on including women at every level of government. Give him great credit where it’s deserved: in lots of ways he’s the anti-Trump, and it’s no wonder Canadians swooned when he took over.
But when it comes to the defining issue of our day, climate change, he’s a brother to the old orange guy in Washington.
Not rhetorically: Trudeau says all the right things, over and over. He’s got no Scott Pruitts in his cabinet: everyone who works for him says the right things. Indeed, they specialize in getting others to say them too – it was Canadian diplomats, and the country’s environment minister, Catherine McKenna, who pushed at the Paris climate talks for a tougher-than-expected goal: holding the planet’s rise in temperature to 1.5C (2.7F).
But those words are meaningless if you keep digging up more carbon and selling it to people to burn, and that’s exactly what Trudeau is doing. He’s hard at work pushing for new pipelines through Canada and the US to carry yet more oil out of Alberta’s tar sands, which is one of the greatest climate disasters on the planet.
Last month, speaking at a Houston petroleum industry gathering, he got a standing ovation from the oilmen for saying: “No country would find 173bn barrels of oil in the ground and just leave them there.”
Yes, 173bn barrels is indeed the estimate for recoverable oil in the tar sands. So let’s do some math. If Canada digs up that oil and sells it to people to burn, it will produce, according to the math whizzes at Oil Change International, 30% of the carbon necessary to take us past the 1.5C target that Canada helped set in Paris.
That is to say, Canada, which represents one half of 1% of the planet’s population, is claiming the right to sell the oil that will use up a third of the earth’s remaining carbon budget. Trump is a creep and a danger and unpleasant to look at, but at least he’s not a stunning hypocrite.
hi i stim because of ocd, to calm me down and stop self destructive compulsions, but i've run into a problem with a lot of stims that have repetitive movements become compulsions (which kinda defeats the purpose of using them) so i wants wondering if you had any suggestions for stims that aren't repetitive? sorry for bothering you
Anon, you’re not bothering me at all. This is a toughquestion, but I am so very glad you asked it. Truly, thank you so very much for this ask. This is absolutely a conversation I think we the community need to have. I know I have my own pain-related issues with repetitive movements, and it’s important that we examine and discuss all the reasons for which repetitive movements might be an issue so that all stimmers are included in the conversation. So I very much appreciate asks like this that broaden my own horizons on problems stimmers might face, even if I can’t solve them.
The truth is, and it’s something I run up against a lot, is that most stim toys inherently involve repetitive movement. Sometimes these movements are broader or can be varied somewhat (think twisting a Tangle and tossing a bean bag) but sometimes there is absolutely no variation in how one can use it (spinners, fidget cubes). Most toys are designed to give sensory awareness without being a distraction, and part of how they do that is in repetitive movement: doing the same movements over and over gives sensory feedback without becoming the primary focus of our actions. This is everything from stroking a plush toy over and over to squeezing a make up sponge!
Please note that I do not have OCD, just some pain-related aversion to repetitive movement, so everything here is offered by someone trying to think outside their own experience. Suggestions made by stimmers with OCD will be more than welcome because you can do a far better job of helping our anon than I can.
So. How do we get that sensory feedback with a minimum of repetition?
My first thought: kinetic sand. Especially if you get yourself a tray and tools with which to play with it - moulds, cookie cutters, pottery tools. This isn’t about replicating sand cutting videos; this is just about playing with the sand, more akin to how children approach it. Because you can do many things with the sand (shaping, dribbling, cutting, moulding) my hope is that you can alternate these things enough that none of them get repetitive. I know that kinetic sand, for this reason, is my absolute go-to stim for when my pain is severe.
Similarly, playdough and dough. The object here isn’t to sit with a ball in your hands and squish it over and over; the object here is to actively play with it. Build houses, animals, shapes. Look up images of things online and see if you can reproduce them. Approach it more like a craft than a stim - that the making is relaxing (I know I find crafting very good for getting out of my own head) and engrossing, but also something you can vary each time.
Since it crossed my mind that you could play with scenteddoughs, as a way to make these even more stimmy, I also want to highlight scented things in general for stimming. In your own space, or with the permission of those around you, you can burn essential oils in an oil burner, or put a couple of drops of oil on a scarf/clothing/blanket/plush toy. This might help you relax and calm without introducing any repetitive movements at all. I find most oils moderately relaxing, but lavender is very good for this, and can be blended well with many other oils (lavender and sweet orange is a favourite combination of mine). I’m always running a candle burner while at my desk.
You might also turn this into pressure stimming with weighted items, namely weighted blankets and lap pads. There’s nothing much here with which to fidget, but the pressure/weight of the item might calm and relax you. It doesn’t work for everyone, which is why I recommend trying a DIY lap weight first (a pillowcase stuffed with rice) but it does work for many stimmers. These things can all be scented, too, with essential oils or (if you’re not planning to wash the item) dried lavender heads and other dried, aromatic herbs stuffed inside the pad/blanket.
Candles made me think that I used to light a candle at my desk and have it burn while I’m working, just for the sight of the flickering flame. Humans have a long history with fire - our ancestors gathered around the campfire at night to work and tell stories - and I think there’s something in our collective unconscious attracted positively to light and movement in this way. So, light-up stim toys. I’m thinking colour-changing lights or lava lamps (professional or DIY) as they don’t require any repetitive movements at all, but if you can handle shaking a jar a few times, you might like to also consider glitter jars and balls. Glitter batons require a lot of twisting back and forth, so I wouldn’t try these, but a jar might work. I made the DIY Orbeez lamp using a flickering LED candle - the flickering did bother me, but you might really like it!
(This is outside the scope of this blog - we’re about toys, and I don’t pursue non-toy stims because of GIFs, games and videos triggering seizures and sensory overload - but Tumblr is full of visual and auditory stimming videos, GIFs, games and clips. You might find these a better alternative for you than toys if the clicking/scrolling of a mouse isn’t a problem. There’s a directory for stim blogs here, most of them covering visual stims. Please note that I recognise at least one stim-discourser on that list, although their blog is marked as containing discourse, so I’m not sure how safe that directory is for ace and aro stimmers who are tired of having their validity debated in stim spaces.)
If anyone has better suggestions (especially if you’re a stimmer with OCD) please comment away and I will gladly update this post. I’m going to have a think myself, anon, over the next few days, and pay attention to the toys I use and how I use them. So I’m not quite done with this one yet; I want to look at the fidget toys I use and see which ones are least repetitive and how they’re repetitive, and see if I can glean any useful observations from that.
I hope some of this helps you, anon, but thank you, so much, for this ask. I think this is a really important thing to talk about.
Personally I really
like brush-like items for stimming, such as the Tactile Tiger Brush (by
Sensory University) and the silicone sponge (available at cooking stores
and on amazon). There a multiple ways to play with them, and you can
get a lot of tactile feedback without much movement.
Thank you for your comment, truly, but thank you even more for letting me know that brush exists. Something meant for chewing and brushing! Want!